Walter Jackson 
Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church, Winter Park, FL

Thank you to Walter Jackson and the whole team at FB-Winter Park for hosting RENOVATE!

As a Senior Pastor, Dr. Walter Jackson has seen God use His people to turn around four churches in Tennessee, Alabama and Florida. His RENOVATE BREAKOUT SESSION: SAVING FIRST BAPTIST2 will equip you to personalize “The Courageous Want To” found in the 23rd Psalm. This breakout will also drive you to go rescue God’s people using the illustration of Saving Private Ryan. Whether your church needs to stop its decline, restart its growth or somewhere in between; his breakouts will encourage you to help your church grow again for the glory of God.

Jason Cooper
Lead Pastor, Church at Oak Level, Ocoee, FL

Jason embraced God’s call to begin a revitalization effort at Oak Level in order to restore Jesus’ mission to the church.  The church began to take steps to refocus on the community surrounding the Ocoee campus.  In the first three years of Jason’s tenure at Oak Level Baptist Church, more people who had placed their faith in Jesus were baptized than had been baptized in the ten years leading up to his arrival put together.  It has been a remarkable turnaround.

Chris Irving
Lead Pastor, First Baptist Church of Gonzales, TX
Rural Revitalization Specialist

Chris served as a youth pastor in several churches throughout Texas and has pastored two other churches in the rural settings of Texas. He led a small rural church to revitalization and is currently involved in the revitalization process of First Baptist Gonzales. Chris will be leading the following breakouts:

  • Biblical Foundations of Leadership
  • Leadership Development in the Rural Church
  • Leadership & the Seven Churches of Revelation
  • Rebuilding the People of God

Drew Cheyney
Youth Pastor, Element Church, Wintzville, MO

Drew has been developing and leading student movements of hundreds for 8+ years. He is a National Conference Speaker and Student Ministry Strategist who currently resides in Wintzville, MO with his wife, Meagan,  and daughter. Drew is a frequent writer on revitalizing a church through youth ministry. Currently, Drew writes the Youth Ministers Feature Column for the Church Revitalizer magazine.

  • How To Stay Sane & Centered in Youth Ministry Without Quitting
  • 4 Areas of Focus that will Produce You Greater Results in Youth Ministry

David LemaDavid Lema
Leader, Renovate En Espanol 
Southeastern States Consultant

David Lema brings to the Renovate Group not only the experience as a pastor practitioner, he furthers brings to this partnership solid academic credentials as a professor for the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. David has a deep and time-honored commitment to educating Hispanic leaders for the work and ministry of the local church. 

Ron Smith
Lead Pastor, WaterStone Church, Orlando, FL

Ron has served as a Pastor for over twenty years, revitalizing churches in the Southeast, Midwest and West Coast.  Ron has developed the small church, the stuck church and the mega church.   Ron is known for passionate, biblical preaching and visionary leadership.  Ron serves as CO-Leader of the Church Revitalization Assistance Team with Tom Cheyney helping churches and leaders in the greater Orlando area. Ron is the author of Churches Gone Wild.

Gerald BrownGerald Brown
Lead Pastor, LifeWay Community Church, Sanford, FL

From humble beginnings in their apartment with just a few members to now 17 years later, Both Gerald & his wife Amy have an unquenchable excitement and love for people of all ages. Their hearts beat for the life change that happens when people meet God and begin to experience His incredible love and mercy.

Jason BrittJason Britt
Lead pastor of Bethlehem Church

Jason and his wife Nan have served at the church since April of 2011. They have 3 children (Carson, Claire, and Caleb) and live in Winder, Ga. He comes from a family of ministry as both his father and brother are pastors as well. Jason loves teaching the Scriptures and leading Bethlehem Church to take new territory for the kingdom as they are strategically placed in one of the fastest growing areas in Metro Atlanta.

Estelle Myers
Church & School Administrator for Miami Baptist Church

Estelle recently completed her DMin in Leadership Studies and acts as an Adjunct Professor for Indiana Wesleyan University in their Global Studies program. She is the wife of a pastor for the last 36 years, and has herself been on staff at various churches and schools throughout the same period of time. She is currently the Church and School Administrator for Miami Baptist Church, where she has served for the last 15 years. Her latest missions endeavors include Haiti, Cuba, and South Africa.

Bill Hegedus
Family Pastor, Bethlehem Church, Bethlehem, GA

Bill Hegedus has over 15 years experience ministering to kids and families and currently serves as the Family Pastor of Bethlehem Church. His heart and passion is to help kids understand and live out a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  Often described as a big kid himself, Bill uses laughter and innovation to do ministry in an exciting and memorable way kids enjoy.

Terry Rials
Senior Pastor, Crestview Baptist Church, Oklahoma City, OK

Dr. Terry Rials has been in Christian Ministry for twenty-nine years, the last twenty-five as the Senior Pastor of the Crestview Baptist Church of Oklahoma City. He is a graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University (B.A., Applied Ministries), Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas (M.Div.BL), and earned his doctorate (D.Min.) from Midwestern Baptist Theological in Church Revitalization. His dissertation project involved training pastors in the principles of revival and revitalization by equipping them to begin a revitalization project in their churches.

Jim Grant 
Lead Pastor, Heartland Baptist Church, Alton, IL

Jim Grant is a seasoned pastor of 20 years. His ministry has been exclusively in the revitalization of declining churches. He is a 25 years Air Force veteran. His travels have equipped him to speak distinctively to various church models and ministries. He received his doctorate in Church Revitalization from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. Grant is a conference speaker and innovator of church revitalization practices; sharing in United States and Canada. He is married to Kathy, they have 6 grandchildren. Blog:

Amber Irving
Bible Teacher and Blogger 

Amber is a Bible teacher, blogger, children’s minister, pastor's wife and mom of six. She seeks to encourage women and children to dig deep into Scripture and walk more closely with God each day.  She enjoys plugging in to all of the ministry opportunities of First Baptist Church of Gonzales, Texas, where her husband, Dr. Chris Irving is senior pastor.

Steve SmithSteve Smith
Founder of ChurchEquippers Ministries

Steve has been involved in strategic church planting movements for 30 years. He is a strategic thinker, a relational networker, a mentor and coach to pastors and young leaders. Steve is the author of several books including The Key to Deep Change and The Increasing Capacity Guidebook. Born in Virginia, Steve is has been married for 40 years to his wife, Shirley, they have 4 children and 4 grandchildren. Their home base is in central Florida.

Paul Smith
Lead Pastor, Life Church, Mandeville, LA

Paul is a leader, visionary, and teacher. He is a sought after conference speaker, Bible Teacher, and motivational presenter. He has traveled all over the Americas, North, South, and Central, teaching, preaching, and strategizing with church planters, ministers, and leaders of denominations.

Rob Myers
Lead Pastor, Miami Baptist Church

 Rob has been the Senior Pastor of Miami Baptist Church for fifteen years. The turn around church is located in a multi-lingual community located on the main east-west corridor Miami Dade county in south Florida. Rob has been in ministry for more than 39 years and has been in church planting and pastoral leadership for 36 of those years. He is adjunct professor of Indiana Wesleyan University and President of Baptist World Charities. 

Mike Atherton
Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church of O'Fallon, MO
Western States Consultant

Mike has served as a Senior Pastor for more than 15 years. Leading a church in a church merger, he has learned firsthand the challenges of a revitalizer. Mike is the author of The Revitalized Church. Mike leads a Mentored Master of Divinity program at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary and is the past President of the Colorado Baptist Convention.

Steve Sells
President of Operation Transformation

Steve Sells is the President and CEO of Operation Transformation a church revitalization ministry in Salisbury, North Carolina. Steve has served in North Carolina and Georgia as a local church pastor for 31 years and a Director of Missions for 12 years. He has led numerous revitalization conferences and projects. Dr. Sells is the co-author of the book “With Greater Power.” The ministry of Operation Transformation seeks to help churches of all sizes experience new health and growth.