Brandon Richardson is one of the lead pastors at Slate Church in Waterloo. He spends most of his free time with his wife Emma and his two kids, Kenzie and Theo. If he’s not with them, he’s most likely out on the country roads cycling. Brandon’s biggest passion is seeing Canada grow into the calling that God has placed on this nation.
God used Melissa’s passion for missions and traveling to serve overseas with ELIC for 1 year in East Asia as an English teacher at a college, ministering to students, teachers, and the local community. She is now working full-time as the Missions Mobilization Coordinator for OMF Canada. She is passionate about missions discipleship and getting people excited to be part of God’s mission both locally and globally. She also loves adventure and the outdoors and is an avid traveler, rock climber, and boulderer.
As a man who battles mental illness himself, Mark Stromenberg is passionate about communicating hope and help to the one-fifth of Canadians who will struggle with a mental illness, and to those who have a friend or family member that is hurting. Through his own experiences, professional education, and scripture, Mark seeks to bring Jesus’ light of hope to those struggling with depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts in a way that is holistic and practical.
Mark lives in Guelph, Ontario, with his wife, Ashley, and has worked with Youth ForChrist/Youth Unlimited since 2010. You can learn more about his ministry at www.strombomb.com
Kait Tompkins is just your average Dutch-Canadian girl turned youth and family pastor. Kait is passionate about seeing youth encounter God in their everyday lives and feels called to help youth own their true identity in Christ so they can live a life of confidence, hope, and adventure! Currently residing in North York with her husband Dave and serving on staff at Upper Room Community Church in Vaughan, this city-dweller is a creation-junkie at heart. During her down time, nothing makes her happier than spending time outdoors sipping on strong coffee, reading a good book and chatting about life with Jesus and her friends. She is also loves all things related to food, art, music and board games.
Reverend Lisa Pak is CBS’ Regional Director for the Ontario and Nunavut Region.
Lisa is an ordained minister of the Korean Association of Independent Churches and Missions (KAICAM) and the Korean Presbyterian Churches Abroad (KPCA) with a Master of Divinity and a Master of Biblical Language from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts. She has extensive ministry experience in large congregations in South Korea, Singapore, and Canada. As well, Lisa has established deep relationships with the Asian, Indian, and Russian communities throughout her years of ministry. She is passionate about missions, the diaspora communities and mobilizing young people to bring the Gospel to all nations and people groups, domestic and abroad.
Jason is one of the hosts of the Alpha Youth Series and a pastor at his home church, Christian Life Assembly in Langley, British Columbia. He works with Alpha to build resources that serve the local church. Jason and Rachael have three kids: Hudson, Mary, and Millie. He loves preaching about Jesus, eating chocolate chip cookies and posting pictures of his kids on Instagram. Jason does a weekly podcast called Hidden City that you can find on iTunes.
If you want to find out more about him, you can find him on Instagram: @jasonaballard
For Alpha: @alphacourse
Ronnie Faisst is faith, ambition, and innovation. His journey to the top of the freestyle motocross world began in Mays Landing, New Jersey. Faisst grew up riding with a boyhood friend at the age of eight and quickly fell in love with the freedom he experienced when riding a motorcycle. Taking a gamble on making his passion a career, Faisst went pro at the age of 18, racing the 125 Outdoor Nationals and East Coast Supercross Series. His passion fueled his desire to succeed as it still does today.
Two years later Faisst would make another bold move as he relocated to southern California, the mecca of the motocross community. It was here that he began building relationships with industry giants and filmmakers and began laying the groundwork for what would become one of the biggest action sports of all time, freestyle motocross.
In the summer of 2016, while making beats and running out of acapella samples from other songs, AC.jR started making original music and getting close friends to rap/ sing over his beats. During that summer his friend, BradyJames, featured on a track and people started to take note of their combined talent.
Over a year later, they are still producing their own originals that provide a unique sound experience unparalleled in the music industry.
Three studio releases in and KB is at his creative zenith. For years, the Tampa native has been something of an outlier in hip-hop, firmly placing a thumbprint on the game while invoking the power of spiritual conviction. His lyricism is impassioned and astute, and he won’t be bent against his will. Given his commanding presence and consistent output, it comes as no surprise that the world has taken notice. The track “100” from the EP of the same name, took home the Dove Award for Rap/Hip-Hop Song of the Year in 2014. And his last LP, 2015’s Tomorrow We Live, garnered both critical and commercial acclaim, earning a Stellar Award nomination for Rap/Hip-Hop Gospel CD of the Year and debuting on the Billboard charts as the No.1 Christian Album and the No. 4 Rap Album overall.
KB is redefining what rebellion truly means. Today We Rebel, his third full-length album with Reach Records, is an exercise in zeal and imagination. No-frills, no filler. Just raw, uncut transparency through and through. KB follows his artistic impulses to great effect, lending his take on terms that are dominating the cultural conversation.
Adelaide is new band from Burlington that started in December of 2016. The four members that make up the band are Dan Taylor, Ben Rudy, Adam Peters, and Matt Reynolds.
The writing process for these young lads began in the fall, and it wasn’t long before the band had a small handful of songs that they were willing to share. Now, Adelaide is prepared to step onto the scene in full force with catchy, performance driven songs.
Adelaide has played legendary venues around southern Ontario. Some examples are Lee’s Palace, The Opera House, Club Absinthe, Horseshoe Tavern, and the list goes on!
Adelaide is currently recording their first single (coming soon), and their debut EP.
When you see them, whether at their shows or walking around town, be sure to say hello and introduce yourself because they love meeting all sorts of new people.
From everyone at Adelaide, WE’RE STOKED to see you at one of our shows!
Founded in 2012 by Jared Groenewegen (GREW-nu-wagon) with the mantra that believers are all children of God who have been rescued from sin and death, which is where the name was born from.
Jared started the band when he graduated from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia with a degree in Worship and Music Studies. He believes that one of the best ways to connect with people is through music and entertainment, and therefore started the band as a way to connect with people.
Jared not only performs with All Rescued Children, but he also does stand-up comedy, opening for such comics as Steve Geyer, Matt Falk, and Leeland Klassen.
All Rescued Children’s goal is to meet people where they are, and bring them the light of Christ. The band strives to be Spirit sensitive in their performances and follows the Spirit’s guidance to reach the hearts of the audience.
In 2014, Jared produced two songs, “Bless the Lord” and “Children of God,” in 2014.
All Rescued Children’s first release in 2017 was “Let It Go” – April 17, 2017, recorded at Wallsdown Studio in Owen Sound, produced by GI Holm. It is receiving national radio airplay across Canada.
Mark serves as the District Youth Ministries Director. He is married to Jenni and is father to Samuel, Abigail, Moriah and Julia. He is a veteran of over two decades of youth ministry and is an experienced pastor, mentor and teacher. His passions include leadership development, specifically pouring into the leaders he serves, preaching and family life. Mark loves adventure, both the kind you create and the kind that God invites you into to share.
Husband to Dawn, and father of Bennett and Zoe, Brett and his family make their home in Ajax, Ontario where Brett leads and directs Worlds Apart, a charity focused on empowering individuals to re-align their lives with Biblical core values often muddled by media but central to Christian living.
Brett was a teacher with the Toronto District School Board for 10 years before moving into speaking full-time back in 2005. Brett has a Masters degree in Evangelism and Leadership from Wheaton Grad School in Chicago and is also a graduate of the Arrow Leadership Program. He and his family are members of C4 Church in Ajax since 2004.
Tim Teakle is with Alpha Canada’s Youth Department. His role involves partnering with churches, ministries and organizations to work towards the dream of Alpha Youth, which is that every student in Canada would have a chance to hear the Good News about Jesus! Before working for Alpha, was a youth pastor for 10 years, and has been involved in youth ministry for over 15 years. Tim and his beautiful wife Carolyn have 3 kids, 2 fish, and a cat named Yoda.
Nick Pegg is a speaker, creator, and founder of Hashtag Hope. He had spent the last three years creating an online outreach that seeks to create conversations about mental health. He has travelled across North America speaking and trying to connect with people who are hurting and searching for hope.
Emily is passionate about seeing God’s Kingdom built here on Earth, seeing lives restored to relationship with Jesus, and believes that God is calling His Church to rise in prominence and influence here in Canada.
Emily is a graduate of South Eastern University in Florida, and currently works alongside her Husband, Matt to lead Lift Church at Brock University.
Sarah Roessner is a speaker and co-founder of Hashtag Hope. She has spent the last few years developing and creating content about self-worth and understanding pain. She is passionate about people knowing they are valuable & loved.
Globe trotting producer, film scoring, DJ Andy Hunter plays hardball when it comes to living out dreams. A versatile veteran of the industry, Hunter has plotted a course thus far littered with glittering peaks of success that all started with one giant monumental track from his first release; ‘Exodus’ was the album and ‘Go’ was the single.
Andy has since released three EP’s and three solo albums, all biblical in proportions characterized by an eclectic mix of glacial beats, orchestral arrangements, electro design and hooky melodies.
Andy’s portfolio is indeed impressive with his work appearing on Hollywood films such as The Matrix reloaded and Tomb Raider 2 aswell as American TV comedy program, ‘Ugly Betty’, ABC’s hit series ‘Alias’ and a handful of video games, including SSX 3, Enter The Matrix, Black Hawk Down, Lumines Mobile, Need for Speed: Underground, Burnout Revenge and Forza Motorsport 2.
Ryan Ries is the co-founder of The Whosoevers Movement, a non-profit organization that delivers a purpose driven message and empowers students to make positive choices no matter the circumstances. Ryan speaks at public high schools and tours around the world. He also teaches weekly at Calvary Chapel Golden Springs and his 1-hour talk radio show, Live with Ryan Ries, is heard nationwide. Ryan’s hope is to inspire people to stand together and make a difference.
Music, Art, and Skateboarding influenced the Southern California native at a young age. Prior to The Whosoevers, Ryan spent a decade as the Director of Skate & Music Marketing for internationally known brands, C1RCA Footwear, Forum Snowboards,
Special Blend & Foursquare Outerwear. In 2000, he managed one of the top skateboard teams in the world and with a network of friends, helped bring the underground skate & music scene together to create “Skate Jam 2000” the first and largest festival style contest of its kind. As Ryan grew further in his career,he found himself regularly turning to drugs and alcohol. Despite watching too many friends die from substance abuse Ryan’s addiction worsened. In 2008, while traveling with the C1RCA Footwear skateboard team he overdosed and almost died in Costa Rica. Three days later he gave his life to God in Panama City, at that moment he underwent what he describes as a life-changing transformation.
Today, Ryan continues to work in the skateboard and music industry connecting The Whosoevers Movement to many different types of people and professions. The Whosoevers mission is simple – we deliver a purpose driven message to high school students and encourage them to make positive choices no matter the circumstances. What started in 2009 as a local effort has ignited a global shift reaching millions of people worldwide. We are a movement of Whosoevers leading the way to reflect Christ in culture.
Danny’s message inspires people to be passionate about Christ and the call to build His kingdom. Taking the gospel to some of the most unreached parts of the world is at the heart of his work. Whether unsaved, seeking, or believers looking for the next level, he has something for them all. Combining humor and depth, Danny’s ability to bring Scripture to life moves listeners to a deeper love for God and a commitment to reach the world around them.
As a wild youth, Danny was radically saved when he met Christ at 17. While on the run in a stolen car, he stumbled upon a book that introduced him to the Savior. He has never been the same. Since then his journey through ministry has included 7 years of camp ministry, 10 years as a worship leader in Canada, the US, and New Zealand, 3 years as the Youth Pastor of an 850 student school, and 4 years as a national spokesman for World Vision.
Now having been called to plant churches around the world with ‘I Am Second’, Danny is a sought after speaker at men’s events, breakfasts, churches, schools, retreats, conferences, and concerts as well as makes regular appearances on radio and television. He speaks to all ages and inspires them to get involved in building God’s kingdom.
He has shared the stage with Tony Campolo, Josh McDowell, Newsboys, Skillet, Seventh Day Slumber, Tree 63, SuperChick, Thousand Foot Krutch, Kutless, The City Harmonic, and has made appearances on It’s a New Day, The Miracle Channel, Full Circle, and more.
Danny lives in Manitoba and attends New Life Church with Naomi his wife of 20 years and their two children Ethan (17) and Samara (15).
For Canadian Worship Leader & Songwriter Brooke Nicholls, the key to weathering different seasons of life is all about shifting your perspective. The first time Brooke felt this kind of shift was in 2015. Seven years into a pop music career; three independent records and many missed successes later, Brooke began looking backward, at all of the heartache and disappointment, and saw very clearly the hand of God guiding her each step of the way – and so she wrote.
What came out of that season was Brooke’s debut Worship/Inspirational album – ‘Found In You’ (rel. Dec 5, 2016). The songs on ‘Found In You’ were milestones of how God had been working in her life, bringing her through tough seasons and helping her find hope and healing. What she didn’t know was how those songs would connect. God began opening doors for Brooke to share her songs and in the year that followed the release of ‘Found In You’ Brooke was able to travel across Canada, playing a total of 97 times in 2017, opening for acts like MercyMe, NewSong, The City Harmonic, Love & The Outcome and Dan Bremnes. The album’s lead single ‘Home’ charted Top 10 at Canadian Christian Radio and went Number 1 at the largest Christian Radio Station in Canada. 2017 culminated in Brooke being nominated for New Artist of the Year and Female Vocalist of the Year at the Canadian Gospel Music Awards.
Mike Miller pastored Shiloh Youth for over 10 years and founded Shiloh University Church a ministry focused on young adults meeting on campuses in the heart of Halifax Nova Scotia. Known for its strong culture of inclusion, preaching and passionate worship it reaches hundreds of college students weekly.
Mike and his wife Nancy and their two children, Joshua and Mattie transitioned from being the student pastors at Rock Church in June 2015 and Mike now travels full time preaching and teaching.
Trip Lee is an author, teacher, hip-hop artist, and thought leader. A pastor in Atlanta, he regularly preaches and teaches at Christian conferences and events, and has performed his music for thousands of listeners around the world.
In his first book, The Good Life, Lee points to the abundant life available only in Christ – a life beyond anything the world can offer. His second book, Rise, calls a younger generation not to wait to follow God, but to get up and live now.
As a hip-hop artist, Lee’s music has received critical acclaim, while reaching a large and growing audience. He’s won a Stellar award and been nominated for several Dove Awards. His last three albums have debuted at #1 on the Billboard Gospel charts, and his most recent album, Rise, debuted at #2 on the Billboard Rap charts and #16 on the Billboard 200.
Trip’s deepest desire in his writing, teaching, and performing is to declare the goodness and glory of Jesus Christ.