2017 NDEM Conference Presenters
Rev. Aaron Soto
Aaron Soto is the Lead Pastor of Apostolic Truth Church in Appleton, Wisconsin. He graduated from Indiana Bible College in 1994. Reverend Soto was a Youth Pastor in Des Moines, Iowa for three years, and served as Wisconsin District Youth President for six years. He is also the pastor of Life Point, a new and growing church in Hortonville, Wisconsin. Aaron and his wife, Heather have been blessed with three incredible children: Blake, Breylin, and Bryson. He is a self-proclaimed foodie who enjoys reading and traveling. He has a particular affinity towards disc golf and tennis.
Rev. Ron Libby
Pastor Ron Libby was born August 3, 1950, and grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA. On February 18th, 1974, they launched a new church plant in Gaithersburg/Rockville, Maryland with their two children, Sean and Joy. From 1974 to the present, Pastor Libby has served as: Sunday School Secretary, Sunday School Director, Home Missions Director, District Presbyter, District Superintendent and Regional North East Executive Presbyter. Through these elected services, and while continuing to pastor a growing and vibrant church, Pastor Libby felt and saw the need to establish a place of safety and comfort for ministers and their wives. This program he aptly named, “Points of Refuge”, and was created to give “Care to the Caregiver”.
His character, vision and self-sacrifice has proven to be beyond measure. Pastor Libby has a love and sensitivity for all cultures, including the Deaf. Truly, he is a man driven by a passion for God.
His character, vision and self-sacrifice has proven to be beyond measure. Pastor Libby has a love and sensitivity for all cultures, including the Deaf. Truly, he is a man driven by a passion for God.
Rev. Royce Andrus
Pastor Royce Andrus, received his call into the ministry at the age of eighteen during the Louisiana Youth Camp in 1967. Together, he and his wife Glenda began a journey which led them to the East Coast where, in 1971, they held their first services at a Kiwanis Center in Milford, Delaware. Pastor Andrus attended Texas Bible College and graduated from Twin Cities University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology. Recently, he earned his Doctorate’s Degree in Theology from St. Thomas Christian University. He has served the United Pentecostal Church as: Youth President, Home Missions Director, Regional Director of Home Missions, District Presbyter, and currently as District Superintendent of the NJ/DE district. He was recently presented with a certificate of honor for 40 years of service as an official of the United Pentecostal Church International. In the year of 2000, under the vision and direction of Pastor and Sister Andrus, the church purchased 72 acres of land which was developed for the purpose of paying for a future sanctuary. Pastor Andrus served as the general contractor for the new facility, giving countless hours to the construction of the 1500 seat auditorium. On Easter Sunday, April 16th, 2017, Lighthouse held its grand opening. The sanctuary was filled with many members, construction workers, city and government officials. We saw God's harvest fill the sanctuary built with prayer and sacrifice - Glory to God for the things He has done. Pastor Andrus envisions Lighthouse as a "Revival Center" hosting many conferences and conventions. He envisions the 2017 National Deaf Ministry Conference as a launching pad of revival for the deaf around the world!
Glenda Joyce Brock Andrus enjoyed a rich southern, Pentecostal heritage growing up in Bogalusa, Louisiana. Leaving family and friends and moving to the East Coast, Glenda and her husband Royce learned what it was like to start a home missions work at a small Kiwanis Center in Milford, Delaware. Most of all they learned to trust God throughout their journey. Glenda graduated with a bachelor's degree in Education. Over the last 46 years, she has served in many facets of administration for both the church and Lighthouse Star Academy. In addition to teaching parenting classes, she maintains a lady’s motivational ministry group, and teaches at various seminars and conferences. As a speaker, counselor, and author, Glenda has devoted her life to prayer as well as many outreach efforts. Glenda gives honor to God for the beautiful edifice the Lighthouse congregation moved into in March of 2017. The greatest gifts of her life are her husband Royce and her children: Three daughters, Shiloh Andrus, Angela and her husband Tim Carrington, Cherie and her husband, Greg Makosky, her son Joel and his wife, Shenae Andrus and her grandchildren, Benjamin and Maiyah Carrington as well as Gregory and Garrison Makosky. For more resources, blogs, and books, visit www.glendaandrus.com.
Rev. Joel Andrus
Joel Andrus lives in Milford, DE with his wife, Shenae, where he serves as associate pastor of Lighthouse. Joel holds a bachelor's degree from Wilmington University in Behavioral Science. He served as NJ/DE Youth Secretary for six years and in 2015, was elected NJ/DE Youth President. Joel Andrus is a gospel music artist having performed on national and international stages. Singing since he was a child, Joel has shared the stage with many gospel notables, such as Marvin Sapp, Hezekiah Walker, Kim Berrell, Deitrick Haddon, and his gift is celebrated across musical genres. Along with music and the ministry at Lighthouse, Joel has worked extensively in support of missions and has traveled to 23 countries over the last 10 years working with churches, orphanages, and schools, sharing the love of God through music and the Word.
Shenae Andrus lives in Milford, DE with her husband, Pastor Joel Andrus, and their fur-baby, Behr. She studied at Urshan College in St. Louis and graduated with her B.S. in Sociology from Florida State University. Passionate about ministering to other young women, she founded Apostolic Girl ministries in 2007 and has since been the keynote speaker at numerous Ladies Conferences and events both nationally and internationally. A writer, published music artist, and creative mind, Shenae continues taking Shenae Andrus Ministries forward into new venues, providing resources for Christian women.
Shiloh Joy Andrus has a Masters in Christian Leadership and Human Services from Liberty University and a Doctorates in Higher Educational Leadership and Innovation from Wilmington University. She is known to many as a prolific writer, a gifted musician, and a dynamic speaker. Through personal experience, education, and career opportunities she became a specialist in resilience theory and emotional intelligence training. On this topic, she has written a dissertation, university curriculum and spoken at conferences both at home and abroad sharing her story with individuals from many backgrounds and faiths. In her down time, Shiloh loves to read and play the piano. She currently lives in Delaware where she works as a professor and program coordinator at Wilmington University. Her greatest "heart" and energy is given to Lighthouse where she serves as the administrative assistant to the pastor, academy of arts director, and lead musician among various other ministries.
Cynthia Miller, PhD
Cynthia Miller is an Assistant Professor of Practical Theology at the Urshan Graduate School of Theology. She has a B.A.S.Sc., from Thomas Edison State College in 1998. M.S. Counseling, from Philadelphis Biblical University in 2000. Ph.D. Pastoral Care & Counseling from Liberty University 2015
Rev. Donald Hanscom
Donald David Hanscom has pastored twice in the Ontario District (1968-1972/1990-1996). He and his family served as missionaries for the United Pentecostal Church International in Pakistan/Sri Lanka/Hong Kong (1972-1990). Most recent he has served the UPCI as the National Multicultural Ministries Director from 1996 to Present. His burden is to reach every culture and every language group now living in the U.S. and Canada.
Rev. Brocc Chavis
Brocc Chavis is the Multicultural Ministries Director-Elect. He and his wife, Randi, have 4 children and are currently endeavoring to adopt a baby boy. He left a successful career in the finance industry to Pastor full-time. Brocc has served the fellowship as a District Youth President (2007-2013), Pastor (2009-2015), Evangelist (2015-current), and as Director of Apostolic Youth Corps (2014-current). His mission is to assist our fellowship in evangelizing every culture in North America.
Rev. Ernie & Sherry Murillo
Reverend Ernie Murillo has been our Deaf Evangelism Ministry Coordinator for the UPCI since 1995. He was born in Mexico and lost his hearing when he was two years old due to a high fever. His family moved from Mexico to Texas, and then to Riverside, California. Ernie graduated from California School for the Deaf in Riverside, and then worked in the printing industry until he retired. In 1994, he received his ministerial license and has been obeying the voice of God to make a difference in the world.
Rev. Wesley Swanson
Wesley Swanson is a Deaf minister who also works as a vocational Rehabilitation counselor for the state of Texas. He pastors a deaf congregation—First Church Deaf Outreach Church—in Pearland, Texas, evangelizes, and serves as the South Regional Representative for Deaf Evangelism in the U.S. Wesley coordinates our Educational department to train leaders of Deaf ministry. Wesley has been involved in Deaf ministry since 1986.
Rev. Jan Epitacio
Jan Epitacio is a deaf preacher who was born to a hearing family in the Philippines in 1981. God led his family to move to Guam and then led them to the United States in 1990 where he attended California School for the Deaf in Fremont. He also attended Laney College where he received his Certification in Construction Technology. He received the infilling of the Holy Spirit in July 2003. In 2010 he was appointed as UPCI DEM Western Regional Representative. Jan continues to teach Bible studies and preach in his local community. He is currently married to his beautiful bride Robin and God has blessed them with wonderful children.
Rev. Meloy Richmond
Reverend Meloy Richmond was born deaf as a result of German measles; He attended Louisiana School for the Deaf in Baton Rouge and graduated in 1979. During 1979-1980, he attended North Central Bible College in Minneapolis, MN. Later he transferred to Delta College in Baton Rouge, LA where he received his AA in Engineering and graduated in 1982. Rev. Richmond is an ordained minister preaching the gospel and the truth of His Word. He pastors a deaf congregation at New Destiny Deaf Church near Jackson, MS. Many people, hearing and deaf, have been touched by his ministry. He and his beautiful wife have two children and 6 beautiful grandchildren.
Rev. Don & Patricia Swann
Donald Swann was born deaf in 1958. In 1981 he was baptized in Jesus name and in 1982 he received the baptism of the Holy Ghost. He married the love of his life Patricia the very next year. He has been involved in Deaf ministry since 1996. He was the assistant pastor to Rev. Larry Beardsley in Phenix City Alabama for about 14 years until he felt the call to pastor the Deaf. In 2015 he became a UPCI licensed minister and this past January 2017 he started the first UPC Deaf Church in the state of Alabama.
Rev. Kenneth Rowan
Kenneth Rowan and his wife Theresa are both children of Pentecostal ministers. His father, Kenneth Rowan Sr., pastors a church in Council Bluff, Iowa. Kenneth Rowan began as an evangelist at the age of 21 for the first 11 years of his ministry. Then he felt a call to Hays KS to build a church. In September of 2007 God called him to Lakewood, CO where he is currently pastoring. He has many visions for Turning Point Rocky Mnt Church, he sees a full slate of activities for youth, adults, monthly kids church, youth rallies, and eventually building a Bible college and Christian school. God has been blessing and giving them what they need to be a light in a dark world.
Rev. Chris Miller
Christopher Miller was born and lived in Houston, Texas. He attended and graduated from Texas Bible College. In 1996, Chris met the love of his life, Susanne Gratto, they were married in June 5, 1999. In 2006 then felt they should move to Nova Scotia in Canada. God has blessed Chris and Susanne with two beautiful children. Chris has taken on the role as pastor of the Deaf at Calvary Tabernacle in Halifax, Nova Scotia. In 2009 Chris and Susanne started a conference for the Deaf out of the Halifax church. Since it's conception they were able to expand the Deaf Ministry Conference to Mission Point church in Saint John, New Brunswick. In 2014, Chris was appointed to as the Canadian Regional Representative for Deaf Ministry in Canada. Chris served one year term as Sunday School Secretary Nova Scotia District.
Rev. Marietta Patchin
Marietta Patchin served as the South Eastern Regional area for the United Pentecostal Church International (UPCI) for 15 years until Oct 2015. She is presently the Deaf Ministry Coordinator for the Florida District and in her local church. Marietta was employed by Space Coast Center for Independent Living as the Coordinator of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services for over 15 years. She has been very active in both the Deaf community and the Deaf ministry for 37 years as an advocate. She established a Prison Ministry to Deaf inmates in Daytona Beach Tomoka Correctional Center in 2002 which is still ongoing today. She is currently the liaison for NDE to the Christian Prison Fellowship (CPF) promoting ministry to the Deaf inmates. Marietta has developed a DVD packet for CPF to be used for Deaf inmates nationwide. She is now retired and full time minister for the Deaf which is her heart beat. She is the mother of 3 boys, and proud grandmother to eight awesome grandchildren.
Paula D. Browning (RID CSC and NIC Advanced, NAD IV, EIPA 4.7) has an eclectic professional background. Interpreting over 40 years, she has worked in venues such as Salk Institute, Deaf West Theatre, SERID, CAL-Ed, Alabama Interpreter Metamorphosis, and Alabama’s Mental Health Interpreter Training, as well as in educational, community, legal, mental health, and video relay. Paula has presented workshops nationwide since 1982; has been a mentor/trainer in CSUN, Mississippi, Troy University, Georgia Perimeter College’s “Boot Camp,” and in the Video Outreach Mentorship Program through PEPNet’s WROCC. Recently she was published by the release of her DVD “Personal or Professional: The Ethics Conundrum.” Quarterly workshops have been hosted by her company, Interpreter Guild LLC, in Ocean Springs, MS, bringing in presenters from all over the United States and encompassing participants from Louisiana to Florida to Tennessee. Paula also has a one-woman show of stories from her 40+ years interacting with Deaf-World and interpreting. For more information on workshops and interpreting resources, go to www.Interpreter-Guild.com.
Kim Parks is a CODA (Child of Deaf Adults), holds national certification (RID CI/CT & EIPA K-12) and has been professionally interpreting since 1990. She graduated in May 2015 with a Bachelor’s degree in Occupational Studies and plans to pursue her Master’s Degree in the near future. Kim works full-time in the school system and part-time for a Video Relay Service. Her husband, Aaron, was born deaf, and together they coordinate the Deaf Ministry and teach Bible Studies at Cornerstone Church in Portage, Michigan. Kim has taught various interpreter and Deaf ministry related workshops since 2000 throughout the country. She shares her husband’s vision to be instrumental in sharing the Gospel to the Deaf Community.
Kim Hathaway is an educational interpreter from Florida. She was raised in Gainesville,Fl where she was exposed to the Deaf culture at a young age. At the age of 15, Kim became involved in the Deaf ministry at her church where she learned ASL and began interpreting. Kim continued her passion for Deaf Culture and ASL as a Deaf Education major at Converse College in South Carolina while working at South Carolina School for the Deaf in the elementary school dorms. Kim has been working with the Deaf ministry for more than 10 years. She has recently passed the EIPA.
Teresa Killingsworth works as an Educational Interpreter for the public-school system in the state of New Jersey. She has interpreted in a variety of school settings from pre-k—12 to higher education over the past 22 years. Teresa not only interprets educationally, but for a variety of community events, as a Free Lance interpreter; but her passion is interpreting for her church in Wrightstown, NJ. Teresa spends much of her free time involved in the Deaf Community…attending Deaf fellowships, training those interested in starting a Deaf Ministry or just wanting to learn sign language. She is the UPCI Deaf Evangelism coordinator for NJ and truly enjoys working with churches trying to begin Deaf Ministry. She has been involved in Deaf Ministry for nearly twenty-four years. 1993 was at Teresa's first National Deaf Conference and her life was changed forever. During that conference, in St Louis, MO, her life was impacted in such a way that she wanted to deepen her understanding of American Sign Language and Deaf Culture. This led her to attend the Interpreter Training Program at Camden County College in Blackwood, NJ.
Linda Libby lives in Germantown, Maryland with her husband Ron, Bishop to Christian Life Center. They accepted the call of ministry and moved to Gaithersburg in 1974. Through the years, Linda has had an ongoing interest and burden in Deaf ministry. A few years ago when Deaf started attending Christian Life Center, Linda decided she needed to take some classes to be able to communicate with the Deaf parishioners. One class led to another, Linda graduated from an ITP program at CCBC (Community College of Baltimore County). She is now working and honing her skills with several agencies in the Washington DC area. Linda also volunteers as an SSP with the DeafBlind Camp of Maryland and continues to make that an annual part of her summer.
Kris Mandley currently serves as the Deaf Ministry Coordinator of the Illinois District. For the past 15 years, she has worked in public schools as an educational interpreter, having completed the Interpreter Training Program at Harper College, Paletine, IL. She previously helped launch the Deaf ministry in Wisconsin, stepping in to help the fledgling ministry get its wings, and served as the coordinator for 4 years before relocating to the Chicago area. She and her husband, Keith, serve on the pastoral staff at the UPC in Bartlett, IL. They have 3 adult children and two grand kids, a grand dog, and a lush bucket garden.
Davena Burns-Peters has been actively involved in the Deaf community since the young age of 5 years old. While growing up in and around the Deaf community and with many interpreters in her life she developed a strong interest in the language of ASL and the interpreting process. Now with more than 27 years of a wide variety of interpreting experience, she has always been partial to stage interpreting and the educational setting. Davena’s academic path has led her to the completion of an AA in interpreting and the completion of an Interpreter Training Program. She has also completed her BA and MA level work in the field of education. She has been teaching informally since 1992. She has been teaching American Sign Language courses for the past 11-12 years and currently holds the position of full time faculty member at San Bernardino Valley College in San Bernardino, CA. and teaches American Sign Language courses levels 1-4. She also teaches Intro to Interpreting and Video Relay Interpreting courses. She also continues to pursue presenting at various conferences. She believes strongly in the fact that one of the best ways to improve yourself and your own skills is to teach.
Nancy is the Assistant Director for Disability Support Services at East Carolina University, North Carolina's third largest University with over 28,000 students. She began her interpreting career at ECU in the early 1990's when she completed a minor in Sign Language Studies and a Bachelor of Science in Rehabilitation Services. From there Nancy worked for the NC Vocational Rehabilitation office in Greenville, NC with a deaf case load. She passed her RID-CT certification in the fall of 2005 and worked as a freelance interpreter and Sign Language Instructor until January of 2007 when she accepted a full time position at ECU. For the past 10 years Nancy has worked in the post-secondary education system interpreting for a variety of students engaged in undergraduate, graduate and doctoral studies. She is the proud mother of two and happily married for almost 28 years.
Sharon Burns has been actively involved in the Deaf Community since she first met Ernie Murillo in 1974. After being saved Bro. Murillo continued to teach his beautiful language. After learning from him for about a year she applied and was hired at Riverside Community College where she remained for 27 years as one of their full time interpreters. She also did freelance interpreting in her spare time and in 1982 received her NAD/RID certification. She went on to receive her life time Teaching Credential in designated subject of Sign Language. She has taught at Copper Mountain Community College, Riverside Community College and also at Palo Verde College in Blythe CA. She is also presently a staff Interpreter at California State University, while doing her favorite freelance work of interpreting on cruise ships. Deaf Ministry continues to be her passion.
Rev. Charles Smith
Rev. Charles Smith has worked in youth and children’s ministry for over thirty years. After moving to Maryland in 1970 to teach Physical, Earth and Biological sciences for Montgomery County Public schools, he became one of the founding members of Christian Life Center then located in Rockville, MD. During his time at CLC he served as Youth Pastor, Sunday School Teacher, Director of Children’s Church and Children’s Pastor. He has also served as MD/DC District Sunday Secretary with Sunday School Directors Rev. Robert Eaby and Rev. Thomas Cobb. From 2002 to 2010, he was elected and served as the MD/DC Sunday School Director. During this time, he preached and ministered to many children in Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey and Pennsylvania at numerous Children’s Summer Camps and Children’s Holy Ghost Rallies. He currently serves as Senior Associate Pastor of Christian Life Center, Ijamsville, Md.