Pastor Bio Example

Jeff Hill – Senior Pastor

Jeff and his wife Jeanne are both graduates of Evangel University in Springfield, MO. Jeff’s degree is in Biblical Studies; Jeanne’s is in Accounting. They have five children: Zach, Makenzie, Brianna, Elijah & Ethan.

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Get to know Pastor Jeff

Hobbies: Spending time with family and grilling

Favorite Music: My favorite genres are Worship and Smooth Jazz. My favorite artists are Elevation and Gateway Worship, Euge Groove and Wayman Tisdale.

Favorite Restaurant: Agave Grill

Favorite Sports Teams: Chicago Bulls

Dream Vacation: European River Cruise


James Weaver – Founding Pastor

James planted the church in October 1990. He and his wife, Susan, are both graduates of Baylor University in Waco, TX. Susan works as an editor for Hy-Vee Corporation. They have two grown children: Taylor Anne, who teaches at Urbandale Middle school; and Austin, who serves as College pastor at New Hope.

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Get to know Pastor Weaver

Favorite Music: Sixties pop music and classic sounding country, but my very favorite is any Christian genre with the exception of rap, which in my opinion is not music at all. I also love Christmas music all year-long.

Hobbies: My hobby is spending as much time with people as I can. I love hanging out with people no matter what we are doing. Well, as long as I am not cold or wet.

Favorite Restaurant: Bravo, Biaggi’s, Agave, but my very favorite is Texas Roadhouse.

Favorite Sports Teams: I cheer for Baylor University in all college sports and I follow the Yankees, Lakers, and Packers.

Dream Vacation: My dream vacation is to travel from city to city to watch professional baseball, and visiting every Major League’s home stadium, eating hotdogs and drinking Coca-cola with peanuts.


Brian Smith – Executive Pastor

Brian is a graduate of Rockford Masters Commission in Rockford, IL. His wife Jamie graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in Elementary Education. They both enjoy spending time with their family. They have three children: Ethan, Kayla & Blake.

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Get to know Pastor Brian

Hobbies: Playing sports, being outside, spending time with my family

Favorite Music: Mat Kearney, NEEDTOBREATHE, Hillsong, NF, GAWVI

Favorite Restaurant: Chick-Fil-A, Agave, Tasty Tacos

Favorite Sports Teams: Iowa Hawkeyes, Chicago Cubs, Kansas City Chiefs

Dream Vacation: It’s a three-way tie between an African Safari, the Bahamas, or a cruise to somewhere warm!


Brett Hendrickson – Music & Creative Arts Pastor

Brett and his wife Julie are both graduates of Evangel University in Springfield, MO, where they earned degrees in Music Education. Julie currently teaches middle school music for the Johnston School District. They have three children: Drew, Joshua & Lauren.

Get to know Pastor Brett

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Hobbies: I enjoy hunting with my boys, golf, volleyball, family movie nights, singing with my wife, playing guitar and piano

Favorite Music: Gateway, Hillsong, Tenth Avenue North, Mercy Me, and Bing Crosby

Favorite Restaurant: Iowa Machine Shed, Cheesecake Factory, Tasty Tacos, and Jethro’s BBQ

Favorite Sports Teams: Nebraska Corn Huskers

Dream Vacation: Tuscany, Italy


Carey Huffman – Discipleship Pastor

Carey majored in Bible and Theology at North Central University and helped start New Hope in 1990. Over the years he has served as an evangelist, youth pastor, outreach team leader, ministry consultant and resource developer for the A/G National Resource Center. Carey came back on New Hope staff in 2018. His wife Lorri is the accounting director for Hamilton’s Funeral Homes. They have one daughter, Elliana, who is pursuing a Master’s degree in biomedical sciences at Iowa State.

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Get to know Pastor Carey

Hobbies / Interests: I’m into sports of all sorts (I’d rather play than watch), wrestling, tennis, outdoor activities, hiking, archery, collecting gemstones, painting, singing and writing.

Favorite Music: You might be surprised. Having performed most genres at one time or another, I can appreciate a wide variety of styles, though I prefer jazz, blues and even a little classic rock (if appropriately themed). I like instrumental stuff that I can worship to or sing with.

Favorite Restaurants: I like Jethro’s, Sam & Louie’s, almost anything Italian, and my wife’s kitchen (I’ll get hubby points if she bothers to read this). But a good bowl of home-cooked chili is fine with me.

Favorite Sports Teams: I gave up on the Vikings years ago the Rams up and moved on me after I left Missouri, and I was with the Cardinals until Warner retired. Now my nephews are trying to get me to go with the Chiefs. I’m a sports fan without a sports team, if that makes sense.

Dream Vacation: I love places where mountains and water meet. I’ve traveled all over the world and through most states, and love to drive everywhere I can. One of my favorite treks is down the Pacific coast highway.


Austin Weaver – College-Age

Austin graduated from North Central University in Minneapolis, MN with a degree in Pastoral Studies. Austin was born and raised in Urbandale and has a passion to see the city revolutionized by God’s love. His heart is to reach college students because they are the future church and community. Austin and his wife Elizabeth have three children.

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Get to know Pastor Austin

Hobbies: Playing/Watching Sports (particularly golf and slow pitch softball), Hunting, Fishing, Camping/Outdoors, Guitar, Friends, Road trips, anything where I am out being active

Favorite Music: All music except for rap or screamo. To mention a few favorites—Hillsong, Jesus Culture, Chris Tomlin, Jack Johnson, Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, NEEDTOBREATHE

Favorite Restaurant: Fogo de Chao. It is an all-you-can-eat Brazilian Steakhouse. Pricey, but you are satisfied for a week after.

Favorite Sports Teams: I am an avid New York Yankees fan, I root for both Baylor University and the Iowa Hawkeyes. I have no loyalties in the NBA or NFL. I do, however, root against every Boston team (Sox, Patriots, Celtics, Bruins)

Dream Vacation: My dream vacation would be to go to some country in Africa to do missions work and then do a safari where I would get to see wild life and enjoy the outdoors.


Luke Spangrud – Youth (High School)

Luke is a graduate of North Central University in Minneapolis, MN with a degree in Youth Development. Luke was born and raised in Lakeville, MN with his two brothers and one sister. Luke loves the energy and passion of senior high students and wants to see that passion and energy being used to serve Christ. His wife Jenna is a nurse.

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Get to know Pastor Luke

Hobbies: Hunting, playing sports, watching the Gophers beat the Hawkeyes

Favorite Music:  Hillsong Young and Free, Lecrae

Favorite Restaurant: Chipotle

Favorite Sports Teams:  Minnesota Golden Gophers, Wild, Timberwolves, Duke basketball

Dream Vacation: New Zealand, Madagascar, the moon


Zach Hill – NH Youth (Middle School)

Zach is a graduate of North Central University in Minneapolis, MN with a degree in Youth Development. His wife Meryn is studying secondary education and has a heart for inner city schools. Zach grew up in Urbandale as a pastor’s kid at New Hope. He sees middle school as a crucial time to reach students for the Kingdom.

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Get to know Pastor Zach

Hobbies: Basketball, Softball, Disc Golf, Camping, Hunting, anything outside

Music: NEEDTOBREATHE, Lecrae, Andy Mineo, Trip Lee, Hillsong Young and Free, Jack Johnson

Favorite Restaurant: Tsing Tsao, Zombie Burger

Sports Teams: Chicago Bulls, New York Yankees, Detroit Lions, Team USA

Dream Vacation: US Virgin Islands


Cortney Ostrander – Elementary Pastor

Cortney graduated from North Central University in Minneapolis, MN with degrees in Children’s Ministry and Intercultural Studies. She is originally from Zion, IL. She and her husband Mark have two children, Audra and Wyatt.

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Get to know Pastor Cortney

Hobbies: Crafting and being outside

Favorite Music: Acoustic worship, Kids worship

Favorite Restaurant: Chick-fil-A all the way!


Anna Flanders – Early Childhood Pastor

Anna graduated from North Central University in Minneapolis, MN with a degree in Children and Family Ministries. She and her husband Josh were married in December of 2017 and came to New Hope in January 2018.
They are expecting their first baby in May of 2019.

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Get to know Pastor Anna

Hobbies: I enjoy crafting, thrift shopping, visiting new coffee shops and gardening.

Favorite Music: Christian and Country Music

Favorite Restaurant: I like the Waterfront Market, B-Bops Drive-Thru and custard from Culvers.

Favorite Sports Team: I’m from Wisconsin, so Green Bay Packers.

Dream Vacation: Traveling around Italy and Greece or spending time down in the Caribbean Islands.


Gary Walter – Assistant Pastor

Gary is loved and admired for his prayer ministry, spiritual wisdom, and his gift of teaching. Gary is a credentialed minister with the Assemblies of God and has recently retired as a full-time project manager for The Baker Group, a local mechanical contractor. He and his wife Rhonda have four grown children and three grandchildren.

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Get to know Pastor Gary

Hobbies: In-depth Bible study, golf, camping and relaxing in our travel trailer

Favorite Music: Almost anything by Dallas Holm, Evie, Andre Crouch, Harvest and the Imperials

Favorite Restaurant: The Latin King (Chicken Spiedini), and any kind of Mexican food

Favorite Sports Teams: I am a life-long Iowa Hawkeyes, Green Bay Packers and Detroit Tigers fan.

Dream Vacation: A self-guided month-long trip back to Israel, perhaps also leading a group there


Don Hawkins – Assistant Pastor

Don is a graduate of Central Bible College in Springfield, MO. Pastor Hawkins has been in ministry over 40 years, serving as senior pastor in Iowa, Minnesota and West Virginia. He and his wife Carolyn have been married since 1968. They have two grown children and one granddaughter.

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Get to know Pastor Hawkins

Hobbies: I enjoy playing golf, biking, lifting weights, reading, and traveling.

Favorite Music: Russell Watson, Ronnie McDowell, and the Gathers.

Favorite Restaurant: Bravo Cucina and any great steak house.

Favorite Sports Teams: Iowa Hawkeyes and West Virginia University.

Dream Vacation: Maui or Scotland