When Emily and I first visited HCC, we found a congregation that loved Jesus, who were committed to living into the good news of the gospel, who longed to live according to Christ’s Word in Scripture, and loved one another as Christ has loved them. We are amazed at the providence of God that has called us back here to join HCC in its mission of sharing Jesus Christ with others and growing as his disciples.
Before HCC, I served as the Associate Pastor of Family Ministry at First Presbyterian Church of Ocean Springs, Mississippi from March of 2011 to March of 2019. I was able to use my gifts of developing Christ-centered community, inviting others to come and see Jesus in order to follow him wherever he leads.
I am a native of the Midwest, having grown up in St. Louis and Chicago, completing my BA in History at Calvin College in Grand Rapids. This will be my fourth time to live in Texas since undergrad: I was a youth director in San Antonio, 6th grade teacher in Brownsville, and then substitute taught in Coppell until God call us to Ocean Springs. I followed Christ’s call into ordained ministry in 2006 and graduated from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in 2009.
Emily is a native Texan, having grown up in Fort Worth and is a certified Occupational Therapist. All three of our children- Nathanael (10), Karis (8) and Clara (5) were born in Ocean Springs. They keep us busy with church and school activities, sports, and music lessons.
When I’m not at church or chasing our kids around, you can most likely find me on the golf course, a local coffee shop reading, maybe out for the occasional run, or at home baking and playing board games with the family.
I first visited Hackberry Creek church when I was a junior at Coppell High School and returned five years later when I was finishing up my student teaching semester here in the DFW area. I had never experienced such a true representation of a “church family” and that is what drew me back to HCC. From day one, I served on the worship team and I became the Children’s Music Director in 2015. After our long-time music director’s retirement, I took over as the Director of Music Ministry in April 2021. My goal is to build a team of lead worshippers and provide a multitude of musical opportunities for the HCC family that will bring them closer to the presence of God. Our goal is not to perform, but to praise!
In what free time I can scrounge up, I enjoy exercising, reading, watching movies, being outdoors, baking and cooking, and spending time with my husband, Donald, and daughters, Cayley and Isabel.
I met and married Patricia Royal in 1979 and in December celebrated our 43rd anniversary. We moved to Coppell in 1999 and have one daughter, Samantha 36 and one grand-dog, Gehrig 8 who live in Westminster, CO. We enjoy visiting and spending time with them in Colorado and the mountains many times a year.
I am presently semi-retired and enjoy traveling with my wife, playing golf (habitual high handicapper), riding around the country on my motorcycle (yes, it is a Harley-Davidson), photography and watching football (long suffering UT and the Cowboys).
Experience at HCC:
Our family joined the then Presbyterian Church at Hackberry Creek following the migration of folks from First Presbyterian Church in Irving, Texas in 1998. After HCC moved to its current location, I served for several years on the Property Team and then served two terms as a Deacon. I have been involved in Small Groups, a driver for Family Promise, volunteered and worked on the HCC Media Team and chaired the 2018 Security Team. After Dave Irvin retired, I took over as the HCC Media Team Coordinator. During the Covid-19 lockdown, I volunteered and eventually added Livestreaming Coordinator to my volunteering duties. I currently still coordinate the Media and Livestreaming activities for HCC. In June 2021, I was asked and accepted the part time paid role of Facilities Manager at HCC. It has been an active, busy and fulfilling time at Hackberry Creek Church.
I loved attending youth retreats in high school and later as an active member in campus ministry as an undergrad at The University of Louisiana at Lafayette. There I studied Fashion Merchandising, which eventually led me to Dallas due to the job market opportunities in corporate retail. After several years as a buyer’s assistant and later managing my own categories, I returned to school for a Master’s in Merchandising from The University of North Texas.
My husband and I started a family shortly after moving to the metroplex in 2003. We chose Coppell because we found our church “home” in St. Ann Catholic Parish, where we have been active members for the past sixteen years. My vocation as a mother to our two amazing children (now 8 and 14) has been the most wonderful and challenging mission of my life. Our family has been beyond blessed, allowing me to stay home with the kids and volunteer in a variety of ministries within the Dallas Diocese. I am excited to join the HCC staff and serve the church community as your new Administrative Assistant.
My husband, Josh, is less Texan than me, having moved across the country sixteen times before graduating high school. He currently works in audio/visual production and previously worked in real estate, banking, and finance. We have two children in middle school and high school named Audrey and John.
Prior to our time at Hackberry Creek Church, my family and I attended Park Cities Presbyterian Church for about fifteen years. I had the opportunity to serve as a nursery volunteer, Chancel Choir member and library assistant. Today I feel privileged serving at HCC as the Director of the Children’s Ministry.
In my spare time, I treasure spending time with family and friends. I find much joy playing piano and violin and attempting to play several other instruments. I love taking on new hobbies. However, my favorite activities include traveling, tennis, hiking, skiing, ice skating, swimming and reading.