John Parker Lead Pastor
After attending college at Taylor University, John worked in student ministry for several years while preparing for the dream of one day starting a church. John and his wife Brandy, along with God’s grace and some close friends, founded Summit in 2001.
As Summit’s Lead Pastor, John has a strong desire to see people filled with purpose and direction. To this end, he leads this staff as we walk out God’s vision for Summit. His chief responsibilities include developing strategy, building biblically functioning communities through solidifying the foundational structures of various ministries, shepherding staff and congregants, implementing vision, and generally equipping both staff and volunteers for ministry. John leads in developing our partnerships in Africa and stewards our 15% that Summit leverages toward ministry outside Summit’s walls.
John and his wife Brandy have been married since August 1999. Their greatest joy is raising their children, adopted from Ethiopia: Mulunesh, Sinkenesh, Archike, Samuel, Abush, and Aschalew.
Have a question for John? Contact his Administrative Assistant, Lauren Gaines.
Jeff Kern Organizational Development Pastor
A business graduate from the University of Michigan, Jeff spent many years working in the marketplace before entering into full time ministry, and he brings over 27 years of business and vocational leadership experience to the team. Jeff began working with a grassroots missions organization of only 23 staff members, for which he eventually served as president until 2004. His extensive business and leadership development background provided the perfect recipe for growth, as they expanded to nearly 600 staff, operating in over 23 different countries. It was through this organization that Jeff found himself at Purdue University in 1989, facilitating a church plant there. It was there that he met his wife, Jill.
A few years later, now with their four children, Stephanie, Katie, Kimberly and Michael, Jeff’s family moved here to Orlando in 2001.
As Summit’s Organizational Development Pastor, Jeff’s responsibilities include helping to equip staff to better utilize their God-given talents and passions, and cultivating leadership from within both the staff and congregation alike. Jeff finds his greatest sense of vocational satisfaction is in increasing the capacity of leaders, and of the organizations in which they serve.
Have a question for Jeff? Contact him.
Andy Simonds Worship Pastor
Andy began playing piano when he was 4 years old at the behest of his mother. However, he didn’t learn to love it until he was in high school and discovered the craft of songwriting. At this point, music became a creative outlet which would develop into a career path.
In December of 1998, Andy graduated from Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, and began working in worship as a part of the team at Northland, A Church Distributed. After three years of musical training at Northland, he accepted an opportunity out west with a developing entertainment company. Although it was a wonderful opportunity, it ultimately only helped to clarify his desire to be in vocational ministry.
Andy’s primary responsibility at Summit is the planning and implementation of the Sunday morning worship services. He works hand in hand with the pastoral staff to ensure continuity between the sermon and the rest of the elements of the service. Andy desires to see the church be relevant not only in its message, but in the means used to communicate that message.
Andy and his wife, Ashley, were happily wed right here at Summit, in 2008. They have two adorable children, Janie and Finn.
Have a question for Andy? Contact him.
Jim Keller Teaching Minister
Long-time Summit partner Jim Keller is a published author, popular speaker, and the founder of Charis Counseling Center. A graduate of the University of Toledo, Jim received his Master of Education degree in marriage and family therapy at Springfield College in Springfield, Massachusetts. He’s a former Campus Crusade for Christ staff member and spent more than 25 years in campus ministry in Minnesota, Massachusetts, and Florida.
As the first member of Summit’s Teaching Team, Jim’s most noted responsibility is delivering the message to the congregation through various sermon series during the year, a role he shares with Zach Van Dyke. Spiritual and mental preparation for each message begins a week in advance and culminates with his fifth service on Sunday evening—this in addition to managing his counseling practice and squeezing in a tennis game or two to stay healthy.
Jim and his wonderful wife, Renee (who reviews his sermons every week), have two children, Beth and Chris, and four grandchildren they adore (and maybe spoil a little).
Have a question for Jim? Contact him.
Zach Van Dyke Teaching Minister
Zach was told from the time he was young that he would be a pastor one day. After attending Florida State and then moving to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career, through circumstances only God could ordain, he surrendered to God’s call to ministry.
As youth pastor at Orangewood Church in Maitland for six years, Zach shared with teenagers the concepts of grace shown through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. He’s also been mentored by Steve Brown as part of the Key Life Network, which features biblical teaching through radio broadcasts, seminars, publications, and podcasts. If Zach’s voice sounds familiar, it may be that you’ve heard him on the radio—he frequents the weekend show Steve Brown Etc. as a guest teacher.
As a member of Summit’s Teaching Team, Zach shares teaching responsibilities with Jim Keller, delivering the message to the congregation through various sermon series during the year. Zach and his wife, Kelly, have three awesome kids, Oliver, Atticus, and Alice.
Have a question for Zach? Contact him.
Garry Abbott Lake Mary Campus Minister | Multi-site Development Minister
Born and raised in Southern Indiana, Garry Abbott and his family moved here to Florida in December of 2007, and began attending Summit just 3 days later. Prior to their arrival, they’d been “attending” the church digitally via podcast and website resources for some time.
As the Multi-site Development Minister, Garry is responsible for the formation and oversight of new Summit multi-site campuses—a fitting partnership, as it was through God’s innovative use of technology that he and his family first became participants within Summit Church. Responsibilities include leading teams through the initial formation process, carrying out Summit’s vision, and training and equipping leaders at each new campus. He is most excited about working to establish new places within the Summit community where more people can know that they are part of God’s plan and purpose for restoration, regardless of where they live.
Garry graduated from Ball State University with a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture. He completed a number of missionary directed electives, and is currently attending Asbury Theological Seminary in the Master of Divinity program. Garry asserts that his primary ministry is his family, which he describes as “the closest and most intimate relationship God has blessed me with, and to which he desires me to dedicate myself most fully.” Garry and his wife Abbie were married in 2001 and are the proud parents of Caleb and Eden.
Have a question for Garry? Contact him.
Eddie Kaufholz Herndon Campus Minister
Eddie grew up in Seminole, Florida and received his undergrad in family, youth, and community science from the University of Florida and his master’s degree in counseling at Asbury Theological Seminary.
At Summit, he is serving as a minister at the Herndon campus. He is passionate about helping people find the best care either in or outside of the Herndon campus. He will also be working to place people in Summit Connect groups, start new groups, equip leadership of these groups, and develop curriculum. He believes that Connect groups are where we truly embody what church is and live out what it means to learn, serve, and worship together.
He and his wife, Brianne, met serving in Young Life together at the University of Florida and married in 2005. She is the person he respects most in the world. When he is not spending time with his wife, you can find Eddie traveling, exploring the outdoors, cheering on the Gators or enjoying great food and coffee.
Eddie gets to be a dad to two very sweet girls, Eve (born in 2011, came home from Ethiopia in 2012) and Lucy (born in 2012). Additionally, he has a dog who dances with him on command—no joke.
Have a question for Eddie? Contact him.
Sam Arocho Waterford Campus Minister
Sam grew up in Woonsocket, Rhode Island, the youngest of five children. He graduated from UCF with a BA in marketing, and is currently pursuing his MBA. Sam began attending Summit in June of 2009 and quickly jumped in by leading the jobSERVE initiative.
As Waterford Campus Minister, Sam is responsible for carrying out the vision of Summit at the Waterford campus. This includes leading all the ministries and volunteers at Summit Waterford, helping people connect in Christ-centered community, and pastoral care.
Sam and his wife, Carolina, were married on December 6th, 2003. They have two sons, Samuel David and Matthew Alexander. When not working, Sam enjoys spending time with his wife and boys. He is an avid fan of all sports.
Have a question for Sam? Contact him.
Bill Behr 33rd Street Campus Minister
Born and raised in Winter Park, Bill graduated from Florida State University (Go Noles!). He is currently attending Asbury Seminary and working on his Master of Theology. He has been a partner at Summit since 2008 and is a familiar face on the Herndon Campus’ First Impressions team. Prior to joining the Summit staff, he owned his own tile and stone company for 14 years.
As Campus Minister for Summit at 33rd Street, Bill helps coordinate the worship services and mentorship program for Summit’s jail multi-site. He is passionate about sharing the love of Christ with the men at 33rd Street and inviting them to discover how change is possible through Jesus.
When not working, Bill enjoys being active outdoors. Activities include fishing, hiking, golfing, and working in the garden. He also considers himself an amateur handyman and really enjoys breaking things and then fixing the things he breaks.
Have a question for Bill? Contact him.
O.J. Aldrich Herndon Student Ministries Director
O.J. grew up in Bradenton, FL, and graduated from UF (GO GATORS!!!) with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration.
O.J. brings almost twenty years of experience in student ministry to Summit through Young Life and Young Life Capernaum. As Herndon Student Ministries Director, O.J. is responsible for all of Summit Students (Surge for middle school and The Edge for high school) at the Herndon campus, as well as working directly with high school students. He is passionate about seeing the vision of Summit lived out in the lives of middle and high school students.
O.J. and his amazing wife Rachael have been married since 2005. They have two daughters and a dog, Farley (named after the illustrious Chris Farley). When not working, O.J. loves hanging out with his daughters, going to the beach with his family, playing guitar, watching movies, reading, traveling, and spending time with Eddie Kaufholz, his BFF.
Have a question for O.J.? Contact him.
Abbie Abbott 33rd Street Ministry Coordinator
Abbie grew up in Southern Indiana—born and raised a Hoosier! She graduated from Ball State University in Muncie, IN, with a degree in elementary education with a fine arts concentration and educational dance minor. Abbie, husband Garry, and two amazing kids, Caleb and Eden, moved to Florida on January 1st, 2008, and began attending Summit the following Sunday, where they quickly got plugged in. They attended their first niceSERVE and Partnership Class, fell in love with God’s vision for the church, and have been active members of the Summit community ever since.
Abbie came on staff in August 2013. She works closely with the 33rd Street staff and dedicated team of volunteers, coordinating the many ways Summit is involved in ministry at the 33rd Street Jail, including volunteer training, mentorship programs, reGROUP, and weekly worship services.
Abbie’s hobbies include playing the harp and piano, singing, dancing, reading, eating chocolate, being outdoors (preferably the beach!), and spending time with her wonderful family.
Have a question for Abbie? Contact her.
Tracy Beeson Multi-site Children's Ministry Director
In August of 2003, Tracy moved to Orlando from West Palm Beach to attend UCF. By February of the next year, she was calling Summit home. The very first service she attended at Summit was enough to get her excited about the work God was doing here. For three years, she found any way she could to get involved—whether that meant cleaning toilets, painting walls, or playing with kids. The latter of the three is what eventually brought her into a staff position at Summit. With a degree in psychology and years of experience working with middle and high school students, Tracy understands the importance of letting kids know that they matter to God, and that they can make a difference in the world around them.
Tracy’s responsibilities include equipping each of the campuses to have the best Children’s Ministry possible, launching new Children’s Ministries at each of Summit’s multi-sites, and acting as the Lake Mary Children’s Ministry Director. She organizes and equips people to serve on Sunday mornings, and constantly cultivates new ways to communicate to our children that they are a vital part of the body of Christ. In her spare time, Tracy is an avid runner with two marathons under her belt.
Have a question for Tracy? Contact her.
Ashley Blahnik Student Ministries Administrator
Ashley has been a familiar face around Summit since 2006, and if you attend the Waterford campus you’ve probably enjoyed her soulful singing leading worship in the band Kinfolk alongside her husband, Matt. She also serves on the Media Team, taking photos for events like niceSERVE and Beach Baptism. Ashley joined the staff as Student Ministries Admin in December 2013.
Originally from a small town in northwest Indiana (where Friday night football is a really big deal and she knew the name of all 90 students she graduated with), Ashley moved to Orlando after high school simply for a new experience. She and Matt have been married since 2009 and have two sweet girls, Emery and Reese, who both have a mild donut obsession. Ashley loves photography, DIY crafts and projects, and baking.
Have a question for Ashley? Contact her.
Nathan Boyett Missions Coordinator
Nathan grew up in South Florida and moved to Orlando in 2007 to attend UCF. He graduated in 2012 with a degree in industrial engineering. After hearing about Summit from several different people, Nathan looked it up on the Internet one Saturday night and has been coming ever since! He started volunteering in the Resource Center, and later became Summit’s Financial and Information Management Intern. In May 2012, Nathan joined the staff full-time as Missions Coordinator, which includes both missions-related and financial duties. His responsibilities include bookkeeping, maintaining church donor records, tracking pledges and donations, missions planning, coordinating and tracking support for mission teams, developing and maintaining ministry partnerships, and maintaining the missions budget.
When he’s not working at Summit, Nathan enjoys reading, surfing, fishing, and watching football. He is also starting an organization to raise support for the Children’s Ministry of a church in San José, Costa Rica.
Have a question for Nathan? Contact him.
Tiffanie Brunson Communications Administrator
Tiffanie began attending Summit in 2008. After completing an Internship in the summer of 2011, she quickly joined the staff. As Communications Administrator, Tiffanie facilitates and maintains day-to-day operations in the Communications Department. This includes a number of responsibilities, such as printing promotional material for campuses, setting up lobby displays, keeping track of our social media sites (Twitter, Facebook, etc.), and coordinating volunteer teams.
Tiffanie was born in Orlando and is a student at UCF, studying art and communications. She enjoys baking delicious treats, bike rides, music, meeting new people, and trying out new recipes. She also really loves traveling and spending time with her family.
Have a question for Tiffanie? Contact her.
Dave Burleson Waterford Worship Coordinator
Dave moved to Orlando from Stuart, FL, to attend UCF. After receiving a master’s degree in interactive entertainment, he had a brief stint working on a variety of gaming titles at Electronic Arts before taking on the role of Waterford Worship Coordinator.
As Waterford Worship Coordinator, Dave is responsible for overseeing the worship elements of service at Summit Waterford, working with the bands to ensure consistency and creativity in the worship services, and managing worship volunteers.
Dave and his wife Ana started attending Summit in 2007 and were married in late 2008. In December of 2010 they had their first child, a baby boy named Jonah. When not working, Dave enjoys writing songs and playing basketball. He may be best known for playing the ukelele at Summit’s Beach Baptisms.
Have a question for Dave? Contact him.
Kim Clark Herndon High School Coordinator
Kim grew up right here in Oviedo, FL, with her parents and younger brother Chris. She and her brother are best friends who are close in age and like to pass themselves off as twins—and most people believe it! Kim is a hospitality management grad from University of Central Florida and discovered through Young Life how much she loves student ministry.
After five years attending Summit, Kim joined the staff in June 2013. As the High School Coordinator, she organizes The Edge every week, cares for her volunteer leaders, and has the privilege of developing relationships with high school girls and showing them the love of Christ.
Kim is also an avid movie-watcher who loves attempting to play the guitar and eating large amounts of sugary sweets!
Have a question for Kim? Contact her.
Elizabeth Cronlund Herndon Community Engagement Coordinator
Elizabeth was born near Chicago, but spent her early childhood in the Philippines. By middle school, her family had returned to the U.S. and landed in Panama City, FL. Elizabeth studied psychology and classics at UF and was active in Asian American Leadership Development. She later transferred to UCF to certify in non-profit management after taking a few years off to work in federal disaster relief. She began attending Summit in 2006 through sermon CDs sent from her sister and via podcast while doing fieldwork following Hurricane Katrina.
As Herndon Community Engagement Manager, it is Elizabeth’s responsibility to cultivate the vision and mission of Summit Church through active service ministries, implementation of niceSERVE and jobSERVE at Herndon, collaboration with Community/Nonprofit Partners, and outreach to targeted communities.
Elizabeth met her husband, Luke, through friends at Summit and were married in April 2013. Their mutual nerdy quirkiness drew them together. Elizabeth is passionate about service and loves movies, big band swing and jazz, live music, the Gators, dancing, martial arts, exploring new places, disappearing into book world, and clever word combinations. She is also a sci-fi aficionado.
Have a question for Elizabeth? Contact her.
Rebekah Crosby Editor & Content Coordinator
Rebekah is a Florida native and grew up in Orlando in a family of five girls. Not long after they were married, Rebekah and her husband, Dan, relocated to Plymouth, MA. After four years in New England and welcoming a little girl into their family, they felt God telling them it was time to return to Orlando. On their first Sunday back in town, they visited Summit and knew that they were right where they needed to be.
A 2003 journalism grad from University of Central Florida, Rebekah has 10 years of experience as a copy editor. In April 2012 she came on staff as part of the Communications team, writing and editing print pieces for worship services and the information booth, blogs, e-letters, and web content. As Managing Editor of SUMMIT MAGAZINE, Rebekah coordinates a team of volunteer writers, editors, and photographers, ensuring that deadlines are met and preparing the magazine for print.
Rebekah enjoys reading, writing, and taking lots and lots of photos. Most of all, she loves spending time with her two favorite people—Dan and their spunky daughter, Evelyn.
Have a question for Rebekah? Contact her.
Lindsey Cornett Elementary Small Group Coordinator
Lindsey is originally from New Port Richey, Florida, where she lived with her parents, two younger sisters, and grandma, until moving to Gainesville to attend University of Florida. She grew up in a family of loud New Yorkers, but married into a family of southern sweet-tea drinkers—a fun combination! Lindsey graduated in 2010 with a degree in elementary education, married her husband, Evan, and moved to Orlando, where she began attending Summit. They quickly plugged in with Marriage Prep class, joined a Connect group, and never looked back.
As the Elementary Small Groups Coordinator, Lindsey helps ensure that K-5th graders are pointed towards Christ by engaging with God’s Word and building relationships with their small group leaders. She is passionate about helping kids understand that their thoughts, beliefs, and actions matter to God and the people around them.
A former elementary school teacher, Lindsey loves to read children’s books, along with scrapbooking and playing board games. She’s also a big fan of Atlanta Braves baseball and the Florida Gators.
Have a question for Lindsey? Contact her.
Will Dickinson Summit Connect Coordinator
Born in Birmingham, Alabama, Will moved to central Florida at the age of 5 and has lived in the area since then. He graduated from Rollins College in 2001 with a bachelor’s degree in music and a minor in business administration. Will made Summit his church home in the summer of 2006, and became increasingly more involved as a volunteer on the Worship Team, as a reGROUP leader, and as an intern for the Resource Center. As Summit Connect Coordinator, his primary responsibility is to make joining a Connect group as easy as possible by coordinating Group Day and managing groups online, as well as to give leaders tools to serve their groups via the Resource Center. He also performs administrative and operational duties for the Marriage Prep Class and reGROUP, and is a writer and editor for SUMMIT MAGAZINE.
Will is an avid college football fan (Roll Tide!), and his hobbies include playing and going to see live music, playing trivia, cooking, reading, and writing.
Have a question for Will? Contact him.
Adrienne Evans Controller
Adrienne was born in Orlando and has lived here all her life. She attended Summit for the first time on Easter in 2009 after being invited by a co-worker, started volunteering with the First Impressions team, and then became part of the “going local” group who launched the Waterford Campus. At Waterford, Adrienne loves serving in Base Camp, loving on sweet babies and getting to know the wonderful group of ladies she serves with each week.
Adrienne graduated from UCF in 2001 with a BS in Accounting, and then earned her Master of Science in accounting in 2011. She joined the Summit staff in June 2012 as Controller. Her job includes for all accounting functions, preparing financial statements, assisting with the annual budget process, and managing the annual audit.
Most of Adrienne’s hobbies revolve around the lives of her three kids, daughter Jordan and sons Owen and John. Adrienne loves playing all kinds of sports with her active little ones, taking summer trips to the beach, and reading (when she has the time!).
Have a question for Adrienne? Contact her.
Melissa Forbes Herndon Elementary Productions Coordinator
Melissa grew up in Dallas, but because she’s lived in Orlando since age 10, considers herself a native. She loves Central Florida and considers it a gift that she gets to live here! Melissa went to Rollins College for her undergraduate (English) and master’s (liberal studies) degrees.
As the Elementary Productions Coordinator, Melissa schedules the volunteers, edits the scripts, sets up the room, makes props, and helps ensure that Foothills (K-5th) kids experience God through singing, dancing, and hearing a Bible teaching.
When she’s not working with elementary schoolers, Melissa looks for any opportunity to be outdoors, especially biking, running, and picnicking. She also loves reading (her favorites are British literature and children’s books), traveling, and crossword puzzles—but her all-time favorite activity is hanging out with her husband and their family.
Have a question for Melissa? Contact her.
Lauren Gaines Administrative Assistant
Lauren may have been born and raised in Winter Park, but she’s done lots of living outside of Central Florida, including five years in Long Beach, California, four months in Florence, Italy, and five years in Tallahassee (Go Noles!). She loves to travel—her adventures include Tuscany and Paris, and she hopes to visit Tanzania someday!
As an only child, Lauren loves having lots of friends to call family. She began attending Summit in 2011 after years of hearing about it from friends, and quickly became involved with reGROUP and niceSERVE—and was baptized at Beach Baptism in April 2012!
Lauren earned her undergrad in psychology and performance management and her master’s degree in instructional design systems from FSU, and she joined the Summit staff in June 2012 as Administrative Assistant to Lead Pastor John Parker. In her free time, Lauren loves to read, travel, tinker at learning to speak fluent Italian, practice and teach yoga, and spend time with her French bulldog, Ollie.
Have a question for Lauren? Contact her.
Tiffany Goad Communications Coordinator
Tiffany began attending Summit in August of 2008. She moved to Orlando from New Port Richey to attend UCF, where she graduated with a bachelor’s in event management.
As Summit’s Communications Coordinator, Tiffany is in charge of creating weekly promotional materials, such as the bulletin and Strategic Concerns, and creates content for the Summit website and blog sites. She is also the liaison between the Communications Department and the Waterford Campus.
Tiffany enjoys crafts, art, music, reading, and being outdoors. She loves spending time with her wonderful friends and family.
Have a question for Tiffany? Contact her.
Jessica Gomez Children’s Ministry Curriculum Coordinator
Jessica is from Fort Myers but has lived in Orlando since 2001, when she moved here to attend UCF. She has an undergraduate degree in biology and an MA in science education. She taught middle school life science for four years prior to coming on staff. She and her husband, David, have been at Summit for about five years. She loves working with kids in Base Camp.
As the Children’s Ministry Curriculum Coordinator, Jessica is responsible for editing curriculum, purchasing and distributing curriculum and supplies to all campuses, and determining the best learning environments and curriculum activities for different campuses and age groups.
When Jessica isn’t in Base Camp showing kids how much God loves them, she enjoys traveling to new places, reading, watching movies, and going to Sea World. Jessica and her husband have an adorable little boy named Ezra. They also have a Chihuahua named Ricky.
Have a question for Jessica? Contact her.
Logan Haag Technical Director
Logan was born in New Mexico but moved to Colorado in high school, where he met his wife, Amanda. The two were married in 2004 and have five awesome kids: Caiden, Rylan, Kellen, Toben, and Brennen. The family found Summit back in 2010 after they moved to Florida so Logan could attend Full Sail University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in show production. They quickly became part of the Summit Waterford community (then meeting at Lawton Chiles Elementary) and have been plugged in ever since.
Logan joined the staff in March 2013 as Summit’s Technical Director and is responsible for capturing the sermon video on Thursday evenings for use at our multi-site campuses, providing training and support for our tech volunteers, and maintaining technical consistency in production elements of Summit services across all campuses.
With five young kids there’s not much time for hobbies, but in his free time Logan enjoys backpacking, biking, snowboarding, going to the beach with his family, and riding his motorcycle.
Have a question for Logan? Contact him.
Doris Herrero Waterford Children's Ministry Director
Doris was born in Puerto Rico and spent her elementary years in North Carolina. She moved to Orlando while in middle school and has been here ever since. She went to UCF to pursue her bachelor’s in nursing, but God had a different plan for her life, hence the reason she’s on staff at Summit. Doris met her husband, Javier when she was 11 years old and 9 years later the two married in 2001.
As Waterford Children’s Ministry Director, Doris is responsible for overseeing all of Base Camp at Summit Waterford. This includes training and equipping volunteers to help kids understand that they matter to God.
Doris and Javier have been incredibly blessed with three amazing kids. They enjoy Soccer Saturdays as a family and love going to theme parks. They’ve been attending Summit since the summer of 2008 and love being involved in Children’s Ministry. Javier is affectionately known as the “guy who plays all those instruments” in the Caretakers band.
Have a question for Doris? Contact her.
Brian Hogan Media Coordinator
Brian grew up in northern Illinois, where he was surrounded with cornfields and snow. He graduated from Columbia College Chicago in 2004 and moved to Orlando for a job opportunity in video production. The humidity and vast orange groves of Florida have been quite the change of scenery.
Brian’s role at Summit as our Media Coordinator has him working alongside many other ministries within the church that relate to media implementation. He is great at motion graphic design, video editing, and other things involving moving pictures.
In his spare time he basically likes to do anything that falls under the category of “Keepin’ It Real.”
Have a question for Brian? Contact him.
Jill Kern Herndon Preschool Ministry Coordinator
Jill Kern grew up in a blessed military family, as her father was an Army chaplain. She graduated from Purdue University with a communications degree. She has volunteered in Base Camp at Summit in different capacities, from teacher to First Impressions. She strongly believes in the vision of Summit and wants to help wherever she can be most effective. Currently, she is helping coordinate the Preschool Ministry at the Herndon campus. She organizes volunteers, distributes curriculum, and serves families by supporting parents in reaching the hearts of their children for Christ.
Jill has been married to her wonderful husband, Jeff, since 1988. They have three daughters, a son, and a son-in-law who she says brighten and expand her world every day. She enjoys time with family and friends, eating outside, and photography. She can’t think of a better place to be than Indiana in the fall when the maple trees are at their peak.
Have a question for Jill? Contact her.
Kate Land Waterford Productions Coordinator
Katie first attended Summit in 2009 and jumped right in, volunteering as a Storyteller in Base Camp at the Herndon campus. Katie, her uncle, and her parents (who drive from Ocala to attend Summit!) were baptized at a Beach Baptism not long after that, and Summit has been her home ever since! When the Waterford campus opened, Katie “went local” and joined Waterford’s Base Camp volunteer team, helping out at Large Group and participating in BCL. She loves working in Base Camp and was excited to join the staff in August 2012 as Waterford Productions Coordinator.
Katie was born in Boca Raton, grew up in Ocala, and moved to Orlando in 2008 to attend UCF. She graduated in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in creative writing and a double minor in film and theatre. Her hobbies include singing, acting, writing screenplays, and playing with her cat, Simba.
Have a question for Katie? Contact her.
Mercedes Langdon Bookkeeper // First Impressions Administrator
Mercedes, who has been attending Summit since 2008, grew up in San Diego and graduated from UCF with a degree in economics. After a yearlong internship with the Community Engagement and Benevolence departments, Mercedes joined the staff full-time in May 2013 as Bookkeep and First Impressions Administrator. Her roles include helping to keep the office running smoothly throughout the week, processing tithes, bookkeeping, and working with the First Impressions team.
When she’s not at Summit, Mercedes loves visiting her family in Washington, D.C.—especially during the winter when it’s snowing—and checking out the Museum of Natural History. She also enjoys kayaking, yoga, and every restaurant in Winter Park.
Have a question for Mercedes? Contact her.
Kristy-Lee Lawley Communications Director
A communications graduate from the University of Central Florida, Kristy-Lee spent her immediate post-college years working as a graphic artist for WESH-TV, an affiliate of NBC. It was during this endeavor that she realized her love for print media and design. Kristy came on staff when Summit was in its earliest stages, providing a wonderful combination of both pure talent and a dogged work ethic. It is under her care and direction that the Communications Department has grown to include multiple staff, providing quarterly SUMMIT MAGAZINEs, weekly e-letters, a revamped website, and a following of partners in the Twitter online community.
Kristy’s primary responsibilities include being the the Editorial/ Art Director for SUMMIT MAGAZINE, giving art direction for sermon series and all print media, web upkeep, and keeping the congregation informed through mailers and e-letters. Kristy loves brainstorming with the creative team for new and innovative ways to diffuse information into the Summit community through both fun and effective forums. In her spare time, Kristy can be found adventuring at theme parks with her husband Rob and their adorable baby girl, Emma-Kate.
Have a question for Kristy? Contact her.
Joel LeGros Lead Audio Engineer
Born in Lafayette, Louisiana, Joel moved to Florida at the age of 5. Joel studied at FAU completing a dual major in commercial music and music performance before marrying his beautiful wife, Elaina. The pair moved to Orlando to continue their education at UCF, where Joel is currently working toward a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering.
At Summit, Joel helps to keep a consistent level of sound quality for the worship services. He does this by training audio engineers at Summit. In addition, his responsibilities include technical problem-solving and equipment servicing, weekly worship setup, and the mixing and facilitation of Summit’s weekly worship CD.
In his spare time, Joel likes to go fishing, spend time with his wife, and work in his home recording studio.
Have a question for Joel? Contact him.
Jennifer Limontes Waterford Ministry Coordinator
Jenny was born in Miami, Florida and moved to Orlando after graduating from the Univeristy of Florida. GO GATORS!! She has a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in early childhood/special education and was a teacher for more than seven years. She has attended Summit since 2009 and has served as a summer Intern and volunteered with Base Camp and the First Impressions team.
As the Waterford Ministry Coordinator, Jenny’s role is to create a weloming and friendly environment for everyone worshiping at Summit. This includes working with volunteer teams and coordinating events such as Newcomer’s Review and Group Day.
Jenny is quite the fan of our local theme parks. Her favorite rides are Space Mountain and the Carousel of Progress. She loves anything related to ’90s pop culture, and can be frequently found driving around Orlando with ’N Sync blasting on her stereo.
Have a question for Jenny? Contact her.
Brendan May Stage Manager
Brendan was born and raised right here in Orlando (Altamonte Springs, to be specific). He attended UCF and received his BA in history in December 2011. In 2007, he went on academic hiatus to pursue his dream of becoming a police officer. After serving as a patrol officer in Maitland, FL for six months, Brendan realized the Lord was leading him out of the profession. Since that time, he’s been honing his chops on the bass guitar and completing school. Brendan began attending Summit Church since 2005 and absolutely loves it here. He has volunteered in just about every department (and is the bassist in several Summit bands). To be a part of the staff is a dream come true for him.
As Stage Manager, Brendan is responsible for keeping all of Summit’s technological/worship equipment organized and in its place, as well as overseeing sound engineers and tech volunteers. He strives to be the best steward he can be over the resources the Lord has blessed Summit with.
When not working, Brendan loves spending time with his beautiful wife Anna, playing the bass guitar, listening to Motown records, getting lost in books, and learning tons of obscure historical information. He also loves walking, training, and just sitting with his dog, Nellee.
Have a question for Brendan? Contact him.
Deanna McLellan Herndon Children's Ministry Director
Originally from Atlanta, Deanna made it to Orlando to attend UCF. She graduated in 2006 with her degree in elementary education. She’s been teaching kindergarten and first grade ever since. Deanna started attending Summit in 2007 and quickly began volunteering with Stepping Stones at the Herndon campus. Her heart for children has made Deanna a wonderful addition to the Base Camp team.
As Herndon Children’s Ministry Director, Deanna is in charge of ministry leadership and oversight for Base Camp, Base Camp First Impressions, leading and casting vision for volunteers, and overseeing communication to parents. She loves working with the volunteers each week and showing kids how much they are loved by God.
Deanna and her husband, Adam, were married in March 2010. She enjoys playing bocce ball in the park, being crafty, eating cupcakes, reading, and trying new recipes.
Have a question for Deanna? Contact her.
Jessica Meyer First Impressions Director
Jessica is a UCF marketing graduate and Summit’s First Impressions Director. Jessica oversees all of the volunteer teams at Summit Herndon, including First Impressions, Coffee Baristas, Prayer Team, and Resource Center. She welcomes and introduces guests to Summit at the Newcomer’s Review. Jessica also loves helping people plug into volunteering at Summit by using their God-given talents and abilities.
Jessica and her husband, Andrew, met right here at Summit, where she has been a partner since 2004. In 2011, their family grew with the addition of their adorable little boy, Benjamin. You can usually find Jessica cooking, playing board games, going to SeaWorld with Benjamin and Andrew, trying new restaurants, or shopping for stationery. Jessica spent two years working in the hospitality industry before joining the Summit staff in 2008.
Have a question for Jessica? Contact her.
Darling Murray Herndon BCL Coordinator
After being born in New York, Darling was raised here in Orlando, Florida. In the summer of 2007 she attended the Focus on the Family Institute and graduated from The University of Central Florida in 2009 with a degree in exceptional education.
Her responsibilities at Summit include overseeing Summit’s family production Base Camp Live!, which involves everything from editing scripts, working with the Base Camp staff and volunteers, and finding new and creative ways to help families grow together.
When Darling isn’t at Summit she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, watching Magic games, and acting silly whenever she can.
Have a question for Darling? Contact her.
Michael Murray BCL Content Coordinator
Michael began serving at Summit in early 2009 and has loved every moment of it. After serving as a summer intern, he felt a strong call from God to end his career as a graduate student (he was pursuing a master’s degree in Theatre at UCF) and join the Summit team full-time… so he did!
As BCL Content Coordinator, Michael’s responsibilities include overseeing, writing, and coordinating the writing of Base Camp Live! scripts among all campuses. He works with the BCL Coordinator of each campus to help them implement scripts at their campus, along with planning and writing special events such as the BCL Christmas Production and summer programming (like musicals!). He also writes about BCL for the Summit blogs.
Michael loves steak, listening to music (especially show tunes!), working out, watching basketball, and spending time with his family, friends, and Summit community. He also loves going to lunch with John Parker, who he considers to be the coolest man alive.
Have a question for Michael? Contact him.
Kailey Newkirk HR Administrator
A history major from Pennsylvania, Kailey found her church home here at Summit in the fall of 2006. In addition to her primary role of Human Resources Administrator, Kailey assists with the reGROUP Ministry, training leaders and sponsors as well as team teaching the large group portion with Jack. Prior to moving to Orlando, Kailey was a high school history teacher in PA, and spent three years serving with a para-church ministry called Campus Life, a facet of Youth for Christ geared toward reaching un-churched teens.
Kailey met and married her exceptionally tall husband Robert here at Summit Church in August of 2012, and the two now live near Waterford and hope to have medium-sized babies. Kailey’s favorite thing is being married to Robert—but aside from that, she loves reading, writing, juggling, shooting pool, putting things in list form, Balderdash, and shamelessly doting on their German Shepherd, Ramses.
Have a question for Kailey? Contact her.
Ben O'Riordan Waterford Tech Coordinator
Originally from Tallahassee, Ben, a talented guitar player, moved to the Orlando area after high school to attend college and wound up touring with a band for four years. He ultimately returned to Orlando to study business administration, married his wife, Alicia, and began giving guitar lessons (he has about 25 students!). Ben also works as a guitarist for corporate events.
Ben first got plugged in at Summit when he and Alicia went through the Marriage Prep class, and he later came on staff part-time in 2012. Ben’s passion for music fits perfectly with his role as Tech Coordinator at the Waterford campus, where he helps with stage setup, musical arrangements, and charts. He also plays guitar in a couple of Summit worship bands.
When he’s not playing in one band or another, Ben loves sports (everything Florida State) and spending time with Alicia and their two sweet little girls, Olivia and Claire.
Have a question for Ben? Contact him.
Josh Pearson Lake Mary Worship Coordinator
Born in Chattanooga, TN, Josh spent his childhood years in Louisville, KY. Josh’s love of music began at an early age when his dad, a pastor and worship leader, taught him how to play guitar during his middle school years. Josh soon found himself leading worship at various churches and church events. After attending Moody Bible Institute for a while, he signed a record deal and began touring with the band Nevertheless as the lead singer/songwriter.
Josh was first introduced to Summit by Amy (who would later become his wife) in 2002. They tied the knot here at Summit in August of 2007 and spent their first two years as a married couple in Tennessee. They moved back to Orlando at the end of 2009 and quickly plugged into Summit again.
As Lake Mary Worship Coordinator, Josh’s primary responsibilities include leading worship, playing with different bands, and assisting the worship staff in putting the many pieces of the puzzle in place throughout the week. When he isn’t working, you’ll usually find Josh reading (The Alphabet of Grace by Frederick Buechner, Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis, The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway, Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller, and The Return of the Prodigal Son by Henri Nouwen are five of his favorite books), exploring new places, or hanging out with his lovely wife and spastic Chiweenie (a mix between Chihuahua and Dachshund). Josh and Amy have two adorable kids, a son named Samuel Ellis and a daughter named Hadley Anne.
Have a question for Josh? Contact him.
Greg Perkins Creative Director
Greg, a Central Florida native, grew up in Maitland and has been part of the Summit family since 2011, when he became part of the worship team as guitar player. In July 2013, he joined the staff as Creative Director—a role that enables Greg to use not only his musical talents, but his artistic skills as well. In addition to planning and playing music for worship services, Greg works to maintain and grow Summit’s visual brand and artistic identity through multimedia projects, contributing to series branding, and working alongside the Communications department as a graphic designer.
You can usually find Greg with guitar in hand, cranking out new tunes—he’s been playing since he was 15. He also loves woodworking, a good game of bocce ball, and most of all, spending time with his wife, Reagan, and their cute and active little boy, Levi.
Have a question for Greg? Contact him.
Jeff Porter Facilities Director
Jeff grew up in Merritt Island (near Cocoa Beach) where he spent most of his time fishing and playing sports. Jeff and his wife, Alison, began attending Summit in 2006. Jeff volunteered as a handyman, and in December of 2011 joined the staff as the Facilities Director. Jeff graduated from UCF in 1999 with a BS in civil engineering and is a licensed professional engineer. He’s worked as a consulting engineer and land developer for the 13 years prior to coming on staff at Summit.
As Facilities Director, Jeff is responsible for the daily operation, use, and functionality of the church facilities. The role is chocked full of interesting tasks such as changing light bulbs, repairing drywall, coordinating volunteers, and making sure the spaces are accessible and comfortable for all services and events throughout the year. Jeff is excited to apply his professional experience to help with Summit’s building expansions, renovations, and multi-site planning and construction efforts.
Jeff and Alison have two daughters, Kendall and Kayden. Although Jeff still loves to fish, golf has become his second favorite past time, next to spending time with his beautiful family.
Have a question for Jeff? Contact him.
Teresa Pratt Multi-site Ministry Coordinator
After growing up outside of Clearwater, FL, Teresa moved to Orlando in order to study hospitality management at UCF. She was involved with Young Life, a high school ministry and enjoyed sharing Jesus with the students. Teresa started attending Summit in 2007 and was first attracted to the unique style of worship here. She even fell in love with one of our drummers, J.P, and they were married in February of 2011.
As the Multi-site Ministry Coordinator, Teresa’s role is to create a welcoming and friendly environment for everyone worshiping at Summit and to help them take their next steps toward Christ. She works alongside Garry Abbott in the preparation and launching of any new multi-site campus with hopes of creating space for new people to engage in Christ centered relationships here at Summit. Teresa helped launch the Lake Mary campus and currently coordinates all campus calendaring and events (niceSERVE, Group Day, Newcomer’s Review, etc.) and provides oversight of all host team volunteers.
While Teresa is not at Summit she enjoys cooking fancy dinners for her husband and friends, decorating her home (by season) and spending time with her Summit Connect Group.
Have a question for Teresa? Contact her.
Cory Quintard Herndon Worship Coordinator
After growing up in Jacksonville, Cory moved to Orlando to attend UCF.
Since he was 7, Cory has been playing musical instruments and has since figured out his love for writing his own music.
Cory serves as Summit’s Central Worship Manager. In addition to leading worship in multiple bands across Summit’s campuses (Volunteer, Nightbirds, and The Score, among others), Cory is responsible for providing central services support for the multi-site worship coordinators. Part of Cory’s role is to ensure consistency in the quality and implementation of services at all of Summit’s campuses. He also bridges the gap between Summit’s Teaching Team and the Summit Worship Department by distilling the content of the teaching into a cohesive service arch for all of Summit’s campuses.
When he isn’t being musical or volunteering at Summit he enjoys traveling and going to movies.
Have a question for Cory? Contact him.
Virginia Schultz Communications Manager
Virginia was born and raised in Miami, FL, where she lived until moving to Orlando in 2004 to go to University of Central Florida, attending on a track scholarship. She competed in track & field all four years of college, and earned her degree in hospitality management.
Virginia has been part of the Summit family since the Winter Park High School days and has served in many different areas: niceSERVE, Malawi trip, Base Camp, and First Impressions, to name a few. She joined the Summit staff in May 2012 as Communications Manager, and is responsible for all of the print material and signage for every ministry at Summit. Virginia talks with our graphic designers and print vendors to ensure we have the most accurate, attractive, relevant information possible.
In her free time, Virginia loves spending time with her family and husband, Patrick. They were married in August 2012 and love doing home DIY projects, bike riding, traveling, and watching reality TV.
Have a question for Virginia? Contact her.
Melanie Snavely Herndon Children's Ministry Evening Coordinator
Melanie was born and raised in Orlando and attended UCF, where she earned a degree in early childhood education. She and her husband began attending Summit a few years ago, and they instantly fell in love with the community here.
Melanie joined the staff in late 2013 as the Children’s Ministry Evening Coordinator for the Herndon campus, where she organizes volunteers for the evening services and childcare events, makes sure her volunteers know how appreciated they are, shares with Base Camp kids how much God loves them, leads team meetings for the Thursday and Sunday evening services, and makes sure classrooms and volunteers are prepped for Base Camp.
Melanie loves reading, being with friends and family, going to Disney whenever she can, and watching movies with a big bowl of popcorn (movie nights are her fave!).
Have a question for Melanie? Contact her.
Cody Stanley Waterford Student Ministry Coordinator
Cody was on a mission trip in Spain with his wife Amy when they were first introduced to Summit back in 2006. They met a group of Summit attendees there, decided to visit when they returned to Orlando, and made Summit their church home. The couple, who have known each other since elementary school (they shared the same bus route!), have two beautiful children, Judah and Hannah.
An Orlando native, Cody attended UCF, where he studied psychology and Judaic studies. He’s currently pursuing a Master of Divinity from Asbury Theological Seminary. Cody joined the Summit staff in the fall of 2012 as Student Ministry Coordinator at the Waterford campus, where he organizes student events, coordinates volunteers, and pours into the lives of our middle and high schoolers. When he’s not sharing Christ’s love with the students at Surge and The Edge, Cody enjoys working on motorcycles and old cars.
Have a question for Cody? Contact him.
Ryan Warner Middle School Minister
Ryan graduated from UCF in 2006, and has since received his master’s degree in youth ministry from Asbury Theological Seminary. As Summit’s Middle School Minister, Ryan’s responsibilities include leading the team of volunteers that pour themselves into the middle school ministry, investing in relationships with middle school students, teaching students about Christ’s love for them, and overseeing the vision and direction of Summit’s middle school ministry, Surge.
Ryan and his wife Katelyn have been attending Summit since 2004. When he is not at Summit, Ryan continues to wait for the Cubs to win a World Series and enjoys firing up the grill to create tasty meals for himself and his lovely bride.
Have a question for Ryan? Contact him.
Jack West reGROUP Director
After graduating from Stetson University in 1996, Jack joined his father in the family business right here in Orlando, where he was born and raised. Jack recognized his passion for ministry and authentic relationships, and knew that this would eventually become his vocation. After making his church home here at Summit, it was not long before he was asked to join the team in 2007 as the Summit Connect Director.
Jack’s primary responsibility is to implement and cast further vision for Summit’s community development initiative, Summit Connect, and the Summit Connect ministry, reGROUP. Jack finds tremendous joy in witnessing the way group life impacts the congregation, as they form authentic, Christ-centered community, seeking to grow and to encourage others.
In his spare time, you will often find Jack reading, surfing, running in the woods, swimming at the pool, or zipping around the outskirts of town on his bike. He enjoys just about every outdoor activity, completing 2 Ironman triathalons, and living by the motto: “Kill your television.”
Have a question for Jack? Contact him.
Brad Wiltfang IT Administrator
Originally from Waterloo, Iowa, Brad felt the calling into ministry not long after graduating high school. He followed that call, graduating from Bartlesville Wesleyan College in Oklahoma in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in pastoral ministry and going on to study technology in ministry at Asbury Theological Seminary. Brad started attending Summit during his first weekend in Orlando in February of 2004 and has been serving in various capacities ever since—everything from the coffee team, to running tech during worship services, to being a reGROUP leader.
In March of 2013, Brad joined the staff as IT Administrator. His many duties include assisting the staff with computer support, maintaining servers, and being the IT connection between our multi-site campuses. He loves working with and learning about technology, watching movies, and spending time with friends.
Have a questions for Brad? Contact him.
Mikaela Johnson Herndon Worship Intern
Mikaela was born in Virginia but lived in Hershey, PA, until she was 13, when her family relocated to Orlando. A middle child sandwiched between two brothers, Mikaela is a self-proclaimed nerd who loves to read. She’s currently working toward her AA at Seminole State College and plans to transfer to UCF to pursue a degree in international studies and journalism.
Part of the Summit family since 2010, Mikaela joined the staff in August 2013 as the Herndon Worship Intern. She’s a behind-the-scenes superstar when it comes to the Thursday and Sunday services at Herndon: designing slides for ProPresenter, creating service orders, books, and charts, and coordinating the Herndon volunteer Production team. She also helps out by coordinating worship for Summit Student Ministries’ weekly gatherings, including scheduling, set planning, and leading worship at The Edge on Wednesday nights.
Mikaela loves reading Jane Austen novels, listening to people with British accents, and playing, listening to, and writing music.
Have a question for Mikaela? Contact her.
Nicole Sweet Waterford Children’s Ministry Intern
Nicole is originally from Jacksonville and moved to Orlando to attend UCF (Go Knights!), where she is a psychology major. She started attending Summit in August 2011 and jumped right into serving at Base Camp, where she has formed wonderful relationships with the kids and their parents.
As Waterford’s Children’s Ministry Intern, Nicole is the 6 p.m. Base Camp Coordinator. She recruits and coordinates volunteers and makes sure they know how much they are appreciated, in addition to preparing classroom supplies, leading team meetings, and helping out wherever else she’s needed.
Nicole’s hobbies include reading, checking out new places to eat, and doing things outdoors. She also loves anything and everything about Christmas—music, movies, you name it!
Have a question for Nicole? Contact her.