The ERLC Leadership Network Council is a collection of SBC pastors and leaders who serve as an advisory council for the Network and receive intentional investment from the ERLC team. During their annual term, these council members enjoy equipping through conference calls and events while providing direction for the Network and occasional content for erlc.com.
From coast to coast, from mega church to country church, and from a variety of backgrounds, these pastors and leaders represent a cross section of evangelicalism in general and the SBC in particular. All Leadership Council members either currently are or have previously served in pastoral ministry.
A list of the council members for 2014 can be found here.
Corey Abney serves as the Lead Pastor of Florence Baptist Church in Florence, KY. He earned a Master of Divinity and Doctor of Philosophy Degrees from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is a past President of the Kentucky Baptist Convention Pastors’ Conference and currently serves as a trustee of Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. Corey and his wife, Christina, have four children.
“The ERLC team is leading the way concerning how to navigate the complex moral and ethical issues of our day. I am grateful for how they equip the church to be salt and light, and I'm excited to be a part of the Leadership Council.”
Jon Akin serves as Senior Pastor of Fairview Baptist Church in Lebanon, Tenn., and as adjunct professor for Southern Seminary. Previously, he served as a campus pastor at Highview Baptist Church in Louisville, Ky. He completed three degrees at Southern Seminary, including the Ph.D. in Old Testament. He is married to Ashley, and they have three children.
“I am excited for the opportunity to discuss gospel-centered cultural engagement with such great church leaders and thinkers.”
Mat Alexander serves as the Pastor of First Baptist Church Gadsden in Gadsden, AL. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Mobile and an M.Div. at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. He is also a big Auburn Tigers fan. Mat and his wife Whitney have two children.
“The ERLC is doing a great job of speaking prophetically to the pressing ethical issues of our day without being frantic or harsh in a time when this attitude is sorely needed. Their steel spines and soft hearts make me proud to be a part of the Leadership Council.”
Trevor Atwood serves as the Pastor of City Church in Murfreesboro, TN. He received his bachelor’s from MTSU in 1996 and met his wife, Keva, will attending there. After graduating, Trevor directed a non-profit community sports organization in Murfreesboro for seven years before moving his family to Raleigh-Durham where he earned his M.Div. from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary while pastoring college students and preparing to plant a church through the Summit Church in Durham, NC. Trevor and Keva have three boys.
“I am very encouraged by the direction of the ERLC towards a thoughtful and faithful engagement of culture. Additionally, the commitment to equipping the local church is something I want to be a part of.”
Bart Barber has served as the Pastor at First Baptist Church Farmersville since 1999. He has a B.A. from Baylor University in their University Scholars program, an M.Div. from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, and a Ph.D. in Church History also from Southwestern. He is married to Tracy. They have two children, Jim and Sarah.
“The ERLC is the vanguard organization in the Western Hemisphere in the advocacy for Christian ethics and religious liberty in the public square. Everyone benefits from that, and I'm excited to be a part of it.”
Grant Castleberry serves as the Executive Director of The Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, Student Life Coordinator for The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a Captain in the Marine Corps. He is an M.Div student in the School of Theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and received a BS from Texas A&M University. Grant his the husband to GraceAnna, father of two daughters, author, and former Head Yell Leader at Texas A&M.
“I am looking forward to meeting other great followers of Christ. I am also excited about learning from ERLC leaders more about how the Kingdom of Christ relates to all of life.”
Blake Chilton is the Lead Pastor of Declaration Church in Bryan, TX. He was born and raised in Bryan, TX and has a heart to see the city thrive. Blake served on staff at The Village Church in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for over eight years. He received a bachelor’s degree from Hardin Simmons University and a Master of Arts at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Blake married Sarah in 2002 and they have four children.
“I am very excited to learn more about engaging our culture with the love and truth of the Gospel and seeing the culture transformed by that. I am excited to see all of the many changes within Southern Baptist life in regards to how they engage culture as a denomination and are encouraging the SBC churches to do so as well.”
Dan Cho serves as College Co-Director at Antioch Baptist Church in Cambridge, MA and as a Southern Baptist Chaplain at Harvard University. After graduating from Harvard College, he became co-director of the Harvard campus group. Dan is also the Asia Director of The Veritas Forum, a ministry engaging universities around the world with the truth of Jesus Christ. He has earned masters degrees from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and Yale Divinity School, and lives in Cambridge with his wife Stephanie and two daughters.
“Given the challenges of a rapidly changing culture, the church must take seriously the responsibility to bring hope to the world by remaining faithful to the Gospel and a cross-bearing life. As it trains the church and its leaders, the ERLC is one of the most important institutions of our generation.”
Jed Coppenger serves as the lead pastor of Redemption City Church, a church plant in Franklin, Tenn. He has served in a number of pastoral roles in the past, both in the United States and around the world. He earned his B.S. in Business Administration from North Greenville University, his M.Div. from Southern Seminary, and is pursuing a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Southeastern Seminary. He’s married to Melanie and they have three children: Josiah, Susannah, and Judah.
“I love the ERLC because it is a courageous and winsome voice for the cause of Christ in a culture that is increasingly hostile to biblical truth. The cultural waters ahead show no sign of settling down, which is why I'm grateful for the ways the ERLC helps churches navigate these dangerous, ethical waters.”
Mike Cosper serves as the Pastor of Worship and Arts at Sojourn Community Church in Louisville, KY. He is the author of three books, a regular contributor to The Gospel Coalition, and has produced several albums of original music for Sojourn. Mike is married to Sarah, and they have two daughters.
“I'm thankful for the leadership of the ERLC. They are setting a pace for careful, nuanced cultural engagement, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to take part in the conversations.”
David Dykes serves as the Pastor of Green Acres Baptist Church in Tyler, TX. He is a graduate of Samford University, and he received his Master of Divinity degree and Doctor of Ministry degree from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Later, he received post-doctoral training at Cambridge University in England. Dr. Dykes has served as a trustee for The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, East Texas Baptist University, The University of Mobile, Baptist Child and Family Services, and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention. He is an author and has produced many helpful resources for creating healthy churches. Dr. Dykes is married to Cindy, and they have two married daughters and four grandchildren.
“The ERLC is on the cutting edge of moral and spiritual issues that constitute the battle for our culture's survival. In a culture that is decaying and dark, the need for salt and light has never been greater.”
Jordan is the Senior Pastor of Englewood Baptist Church in Jackson, Tennessee; a committed church community that has quickly become one of the fastest growing churches in Tennessee. Prior to moving to Jackson, Jordan served as the Teaching Pastor at Long Hollow Baptist Church in Hendersonville, Tennessee. He’s also written for Lifeway and in 2013, B&H published Jordan’s first book, Life Change. Jordan received his Bachelors degree in Biblical Studies from Dallas Baptist University and attended Seminary at both Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Luther Rice Seminary. Jordan is also an avid sports fan and outdoorsman. He enjoys hunting, fishing, golfing and spending time with his wife Audra and their two kids, Jailee and Asher.
“I believe the ERLC is on the cutting edge of leading change within our culture and within the Christian community, and I consider it a privilege to be on the council that will be spearheading these initiatives in the coming days.”
Jamus Edwards serves as the Pastor of Preaching and Vision at Pleasant Valley Community Church in Owensboro, KY. A native of Cadiz, Kentucky, Jamus attended Murray State University where he earned his bachelor’s degree. It was during his time at MSU where he met the love of his life, Annie Leigh. They were married in July of 2005 and have since had three children, and they plan to adopt from China. Jamus earned his M.Div. from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and is currently working on a Ph.D. in Leadership from SBTS.
“There has never been a better time to be a Southern Baptist, and one of the reasons for this is because of the incredible work being forged by the ERLC. I am thrilled at the opportunity to think and work alongside other leaders in engaging a culture that is in crisis - a culture that desperately needs the Gospel of Christ.”
Charles Fowler serves as the Senior Pastor of Germantown Baptist Church in Germantown, TN. He served for sixteen years at Union University in various capacities including Senior Vice President for University Relations, Executive Director of the Union University Foundation, LLC, and Professor of Christian Ministries and Education. While at Union, he also served as interim pastor in more than a dozen churches throughout the Mid-South. Dr. Fowler is originally from Corinth, MS. He is a graduate of Union University, Mississippi State University and New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. Charles and his wife Sandra have two daughters.
“While I am grateful for any ideas and ministry solutions that might surface through our conversations, I am primarily interested in discovering questions that I am not currently asking related to cultural and governmental trends. My desire is to use our time together to grow so that I can more effectively encourage and equip those I pastor to respond convictionally and compassionately for the purpose of developing a meaningful voice to speak to our community as changes occur.”
Mike Glenn serves as the Senior Pastor of Brentwood Baptist Church in Brentwood, TN. He is a graduate of Samford University and The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. Dr. Glenn was part of the founding group for Kairos, a ministry focused on young adults. He has served on the Executive Board of the Tennessee Baptist Convention, Board of Trustees of Belmont University, and the Board of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Dr. Glenn has also authored two books: In Real Time and The Gospel of Yes. He is the husband to Jeannie, a father of two twin boys.
“Having the opportunity to look at the hard questions that challenge our churches in our postmodern, post belief culture is a treasured gift for me.”
Mike Goeke serves as the Associate Pastor at First Baptist Church of San Francisco. Mike is a graduate of Baylor University and Texas Tech School of Law. He helped form Cross Power Ministries, a ministry that works with marriages impacted by same-sex attraction, while he was an associate pastor at Stonegate Fellowship in Midland, Texas. Mike is married to Stephanie, and they have three children.
“I believe that the ERLC is poised to have unprecedented influence in both the culture and the church. As a true believer in the ability to proclaim 100% truth with 100% grace, I am thrilled and honored to be a part of the Leadership Council.”
Andrew Hebert serves as the Lead Pastor of Taylor Memorial Baptist Church in Hobbs, NM. Previously, he served as pastor of churches in Texas and in the administration of Criswell College in Dallas, Texas. He has a B.A. in Biblical Studies and an M.A. in Ministry from Criswell College, conducted postgraduate research in New Testament at the University of Wales, and is in the doctoral program at The Southern Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. Andrew and his wife Amy have three children.
“One of the greatest benefits of being a Southern Baptist is having our interests represented in Washington, D.C., through the ERLC and the powerful voice of Dr. Russell Moore. Not only does he speak well for us, he speaks helpfully to us on the issues about which the church needs to be aware. His is a prophetic and compassionate voice that represents the church well.”
Kyle Hoover serves as the Lead Pastor/Elder at Charlottesville Community Church in Charlottesville, VA. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism and received his Masters of Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is married to Christine, and they have three boys.
“As the vectors of culture and the Bible continue to diverge, the ERLC does an amazing job of connecting the cross-cultural, timeless truths of the Gospel to our cultural reality. More and more, the ERLC is going to be a strong anchor for Christians who are rooted in the truth of the Bible while trying to reach and engage today's culture. I gladly tie my and my church's ship to this anchor.”
D.A. Horton serves as the Executive Director of ReachLife Ministries and the National Coordinator for Urban Student Missions at NAMB. For over 16 years D.A has used the medium of Rap Music as a tool to help educate the people of God on the precepts of Scripture and how to evangelize to the lost by presenting them with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. After earning his Bachelor’s Degree in Biblical Studies at Calvary Bible College, D.A. completed his Master’s Degree in Christian Studies from Calvary Theological Seminary. Currently, he is a pursuing a Ph.D. at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the author of G.O.S.P.E.L and DNA: Foundations of the Faith. He is married to Elicia, and they have two daughters and one son.
“I desire to provide conservative Evangelical ethnic minorities with a seat at the table of conversation. I want to serve as a door holder for those who come after me.”
Dean Inserra is the founding and senior pastor of City Church in Tallahassee, Fla. Dean has served as a Youth Minister in Tallahassee and regularly speaks at campus organizations at Florida State University. He has a degree in Biblical Studies from Liberty University and also attended The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He married Krissie in December of 2003. They have three children.
“I believe we have a missional mandate to take our faith to the intersection of Christian ethics and the public square, and nobody is more engaged in that effort than the ERLC.”
Steven M. Lee serves as the Lead Pastor of Redeemer City Church in Washington, D.C. He received a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Maryland in College Park, MD and a Th.M. in Pastoral Ministries and Counseling from Dallas Theological Seminary. Steven and his wife Tiffany have three children.
“The ERLC is important because I am able to 'learn how to navigate the increasing political and social climate of our day in a distinctly Christian way. I am also an ethnic minority and would like to be a bridge builder in my community in these areas.'”
Nathan Lino founded Northeast Houston Baptist Church in 2002 and has served as the Senior Pastor since that time. He earned degrees from Texas A&M University and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, NC and is currently in the final stages of a doctor of ministry at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. He and his wife, Nicole, have one son, Colton, and three daughters, Campbell, Cassidy and Chloe.
“The decline of biblical values in our country has never been as rapid as it is now. Our pastors and churches need the SBC's ethics agency as much as ever so we can stay informed and equipped on the front lines of battle. God has raised Russell Moore and his team for this crucial time.”
Fred Luter Jr. serves as senior pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans, LA. Beginning as a street preacher, he has spent his life serving New Orleans, even ministering as Hurricane Katrina devastated the city in 2005. In 2012, he was elected as the convention's first African American President and served in that role until 2014. He is married to Elizabeth, and they have two children.
“I have always been impressed with Russell Moore. He stepped in some big shoes when he was selected as President of the ERLC and has done an incredible job. I am excited about being on the ERLC Leadership Council because I will get a chance to learn from one of the best minds in the SBC, Russell Moore.”
Derrick Lynch serves as Senior Pastor of Blue Valley Baptist Church in Overland Park, KS. He has received a B.A. from Oklahoma Baptist University, a M.Div. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, and is completing a D.Min. degree from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. During his ministry, Lynch has served on the Executive Board of the Tennessee Baptist Convention, the Board of Directors for the Oklahoma Baptist University Alumni Association, and as a trustee of the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He and his wife Julie have two children.
“Participating on the ERLC Leadership Council is a tremendous opportunity for me and the church I lead to be equipped in areas of strategic cultural importance, enabling us to better engage our world with a message of grace and hope in Christ.”
Jeff Medders is the Lead Pastor of Redeemer Church in Tomball, TX. He is pursuing his M.Div at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and has a bachelor’s degree in Biblical Counseling and Biblical Studies from the College of Biblical Studies. Jeff is the husband to Natalie, father to Ivy and Oliver, and author.
“As I seek to be a faithful pastor, time and again, the ERLC is one of the most helpful, trusted, kind, and robustly convictional group of brothers and sisters on this side of the eschaton. I'm thrilled to be a part of the Leadership Council.”
Nick Moore serves as the Lead Pastor at Redemption Hill Baptist Church in Fisherville, KY. Nick has a B.A. in Biblical and Theological Studies from Boyce College, a M.Div from the School of Theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary where he is currently finishing up his Ph.D. in Old Testament Theology. He is the husband to Kyndra, and they have seven children.
“As a pastor, I regularly have front row seats to witness the carnage wrought by a lack of biblical thinking regarding ethical and moral issues. I am excited to support and be part of an organization that is committed to bringing the whole biblical witness to bear on the most pressing issues of our time.”
Nick Nye serves as the Lead Pastor of Veritas Community Church in Columbus, OH. Nick has a B.A. in Religion from Wright State University and a M. Div. from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Nick serves on the board of the Sojourn Network, a national church planting network built around common identities and DNA. He is married to Brittany, and they have four children.
“The church has often been silent or stale in our approach to issues of justice or cultural engagement. I want to grow and learn on how the identity we have been given in Christ Jesus moves us to engage our culture well.”
Chris Osborne has served as the Pastor of Central Baptist Church in College Station, TX since 1986. He has received degrees from Mississippi College and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Chris and his wife Peggy have two children and are grandparents.
“I love the new direction and pulse at the ERLC.”
Scott Patty is the founding pastor of Grace Community Church in Brentwood, TN. He received his undergraduate degree from Belmont University and his master’s from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Scott is married to Beth and has two married daughters, Emily and Hannah.
“The grace of God brings salvation and instructs us to live godly lives in this present age. I am grateful that the ERLC is serving and encouraging Christians and churches to live our public lives in ways that bring the saving grace of God to people.”
Kevin Peck serves as the Lead Pastor at The Austin Stone Community Church in Austin, TX. Kevin plans, writes, teaches, and leads Austin Stone’s teams to strive with all of God’s energy to accomplish the mission He has set before them. He is a Ministry Grid Advisory Council Member. He received a BBA at Texas A&M, a M.Div. at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a D.Min. at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
“I am excited about the ERLC because of the way that is has consistently and faithfully influenced leaders inside of the Church, as well as the way that is has portrayed to the watching world what it looks like to both hold closely to Biblical Doctrine and hold open the door of hope that is the Gospel. I have every reason to believe that it will continue doing both of these things in the future.”
Vance Pitman serves as the Senior Pastor of Hope Church in Las Vegas, NV. He is a City Catalyst for SEND Las Vegas and an Executive Board Member for LAUNCH, a national church planting network. He received a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Alabama and a M.Div. from Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary. He is married to Kristi, and they have four children.
“We are living in extremely complex and rapidly changing times. I am deeply thankful for the leadership of Dr. Moore and the ERLC to help us biblically understand and graciously engage in the midst of these times with the unchanging truth of God's Word.”
John Powell is the senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Hamlin, Texas. Previously, he served as director of admissions at Southern Seminary and discipleship pastor at Carlisle Avenue Baptist Church in Louisville, Ky. After graduating from Southwest Baptist University, he earned a M.Div from Southern Seminary. John and his wife, Katherine, have three children: Gunner, Bennett, and Ada Kate.
“The ERLC is speaking and equipping pastors to speak to the most crucial social issues of the day. I can't think of a more crucial time for this crucial voice.”
James Reamer is the Pastor of Renaissance Church in North Las Vegas, NV. James currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. He received a Business Management degree from California State University Dominguez Hills. He is married to Christa, and they have two children.
“For such a time as this, I believe the ERLC is positioned to speak relevantly and truthfully into a diverse post Christian American culture. This organization is a needed voice for our times. I'm excited to be involved with the council because I believe in the mission of ERLC, and I greatly respect Russell Moore and the ERLC staff.”
Larry Robertson serves as the Pastor of Hilldale Baptist Church in Clarksville, TN. Prior to serving as the President of the Tennessee Baptist Convention, Dr. Robertson served as the State Evangelism Specialist for the Tennessee Baptist Convention. Dr. Robertson graduated from Blue Mountain College with a Bachelor of Arts and received a M.Div. and Ph.D. in Evangelism from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He is married to Beth, and they have two daughters.
“With such a rapidly changing and complex culture, never has the work and mission of the ERLC been more important than today. We need such a clear voice for justice and righteousness.”
Juan Sanchez was converted to Christ in 1983 at the age of 17. In 2005, Juan joined the staff of High Pointe Baptist Church to serve as preaching pastor and elder. Juan earned an undergraduate degree in Music from the University of Florida as well as a Masters of Divinity and a Masters in Theology from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. He is currently completing his Doctorate of Philosophy degree from the same institution. In addition, he is a council member of The Gospel Coalition and trains pastors in Eastern Europe and Latin America. Juan and his wife have five daughters and one son-in-law.
Robbie Seay serves as Worship Pastor & elder at Bayou City Fellowship in Houston,Tx. Robbie is a songwriter, recording artist and record producer. His latest release, “Psalms LP”, is 14 Psalms set to new music. He attended Baylor University and serves on the Baylor Church Music Advisory Board. He & his wife Liz have been married for 16 years and have 5 children.
“ERLC leads with boldness and humility facing daunting issues with the Gospel and grace of Jesus. I'm grateful to be around men who are seeking to love, serve and take a stand in the name of Jesus.”
Kevin Smith serves as assistant professor of preaching at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and as Teaching Pastor at Highview Baptist Church in Louisville, Ky. Before moving to Highview, Kevin served as pastor for Watson Memorial Baptist Church for eight years. He is currently a Ph. D. candidate. In 2006, he became the first African-American ever elected Vice President of the Kentucky Baptist Convention. Kevin and his wife Patricia have been married for 21 years and have five children.
Rob Turner serves as the Teaching Team Lead Pastor of Apex Community Church in Kettering, OH. He is married to Angela, and they have four children. Rob received a B.A. from Northern Kentucky University and a M.Div. from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
“I believe the ERLC has a unique opportunity at such a morally ambiguous time to display the clear supremacy of Christ. My desire to serve on the Leadership Council is fueled by the Gospel and the implications of that Gospel upon a broken and hurting world.”
Kevin Ueckert serves as the Senior Pastor of South Side Baptist Church in Abilene, TX. He received a BBA from Texas A&M, a M.Div. at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and currently pursuing a D.Min. in Expository Preaching from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is married to Lynlee, and they have three children.
“I am excited about serving on the Leadership Council because I believe that this experience will equip me to be a better pastor and leader in my local church. I am also excited about this opportunity because it will enable me to be a better ambassador for this incredibly relevant and important SBC entity.”
Hershael W. York serves as the Victor and Louise Lester Professor of Christian Preaching at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. Before joining the faculty of Southern Seminary, Dr. York led the congregation of Ashland Avenue Baptist Church in Lexington, KY. Since coming to Southern, Dr. York has authored two books on speaking and preaching, has been featured in Preaching Today as one of the best preachers in North America, has spoken at the International Congress on preaching, and has served as the President of the Kentucky Baptist Convention. He is currently the pastor of Buck Run Baptist Church in Frankfort, KY and frequently ministers in Brazil and Romania. He has also served as pastor of First Baptist Church of Marion, Arkansas, and served as Chancellor of Lexington Baptist College. He received a B.A. and M.A. from the University of Kentucky and a M.Div. and Ph.D. from Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the husband to Tanya, father to two boys, and a grandfather.
“No organization is poised to lead Southern Baptist churches to have a gospel impact on every segment of society like the ERLC.”
Afshin Ziafat currently serves as the Lead Pastor of Providence Church in Frisco, TX. For twelve years, Afshin served as an evangelist and itinerant speaker based out of Dallas. He serves on the Board of Directors for Vertical Ministries at Baylor University in Waco, TX. Afshin graduated from The University of Texas with a Bachelors of Arts in History and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary with a M.Div. He has written many articles and is a contributor for The Gospel Project. He also travels into the Middle East regularly to train Iranian pastors. He is married to Meredith.
“I am honored to serve with such great church leaders as we think through addressing social issues of our time. I am excited to learn from Dr. Moore and these great leaders.”