Our Staff

The Brethren Church National Office Staff team seeks to Mobilize existing congregations and Multiply new ones in keeping with the vision and values of the Brethren Church. Additionally they coordinate strategic relationships with twelve Global Partner countries in North America, South America, Asia, and Europe.  Together, they exist to serve the mission of the church, and encourage each local congregation to be in conversation with them about how to impact their communities.


 Executive Director - Steven Cole 

Steven Cole is a native of Texas and has spent time in New Mexico, Georgia, and most recently, Northern California where he was the pastor of Northgate Community Brethren Church in Manteca. As the Executive Director of The Brethren Church, Steven works to communicate the vision and diverse story of our denomination. He is a 2007 graduate of Bethel Seminary with a Masters of Arts degree in Transformational Leadership and is currently working on his Doctor of Ministry degree at Ashland Theological Seminary. His wife Beth and he have been married since 2001 and are the parents of Maggie and Patrick. Steven is an avid golfer and rarely turns down an invitation to play. Contact Steven  ext.1006

Paula StricklandOffice Coordinator - Paula Strickland

Paula Strickland is the Office Coordinator at the Brethren Church National Office. She and her husband, Ed will celebrate 20 years of marriage in December. They have 3 kids, Naomi & Hanna live at home, Zack has moved to the Columbus area.  Paula and her family are involved in ministry at Park Street. Paula attended Ashland University where she pursued a degree in public communication. Contact Paula  ext. 1001

 Bill LudwigMissioChurch National Coordinator - Bill Ludwig

Bill Ludwig is a 2006 graduate from Ashland Theological Seminary with a  Masters of Divinity and a 2003 graduate from University of Akron where he was a double major in Psychology and Sociology. He has worked at The Brethren Church National Office as The Church Planting Coordinator since June of 2006. Bill is involved personally in planting churches in Northeast Ohio and providing leadership development, coaching and mentoring for church planters around the U.S. and Canada. He and his wife, Jennifer, have been married for over seventeen years and together they are the proud parents of two teenage children who he claims to be the best humans he knows. In his moments of freedom he enjoys anything outdoors, especially fishing and backpacking.  Contact Bill  ext. 1003

Gary DiehlMobilize National Coordinator - Gary Diehl

Gary Diehl serves the as the Mobilize National Coordinator. He loves helping pastors, leaders, teams and congregations ask and answer the right questions based on their specific circumstances and unique context of ministry. As a member of First Brethren of North Georgetown, he has been a teacher, choir director, worship leader, moderator, financial secretary, deacon and a coach and leader of teams, task forces and boards. Gary had 30+ years of experience in a business setting before joining the national office staff, and earned his B.A. in business from Malone University. He also serves churches outside the Brethren context as a lead consultant and coach with Living Stones Associates. He and his wife Nancy have four children and four grandchildren.  Contact Gary  ext. 1002

Operations Manager - Tony Van Duyne

Tony Van Duyne has worked at the National Office since 2005 and now serves as Operations Manager. He is involved with the campus ministry on the campus of Ashland University and attends Five Stones Community Church since its beginning in 2003. Tony and his wife Jillian have been married for 10 years and have one son and one daughter. Tony is a graduate of Ashland University (2005) with a degree in Business Administration.  Contact Tony  ext. 1007

 

Brethren Leadership Development National Coordinator - Ryan Smith

Ryan Smith is the Coordinator for Brethren Leadership Development, a role he has served in since 2013. A former youth pastor with the Nappanee First Brethren Church, Ryan has a heart to help guide people to greater Kingdom impact. Ryan is a 2010 graduate of Huntington University, with a MA in Youth Ministry and a 1999 graduate from Malone University, with a BA in Diversified Ministries. Ryan and his wife Lindsay (Brandon), along with their daughter Lily, live in Nappanee Indiana, where they are actively involved in leading a GSE church plant, called  White Stone. In his free time, Ryan enjoys Geocaching, grilling, Minecraft, & being with friends. Contact Ryan  ext. 1004

 

Scott SodenBrethren Global Partners Coordinator - Scott Soden

Scott serves as the  Associate Pastor at the Cheyenne Brethren Church in Cheyenne, Wyoming and has been an ordained Elder in the Brethren Church since 2010. Scott has AAS in Business Management from Laramie County Community College and two certificates in Entrepreneurial Studies. Scott is currently pursuing his BA in Business Administration from Colorado Christian University. Scott and his wife Barbara have been married for 22 years and have three amazing kids. David, Katryna, and Victoria. Scott spends his free time connecting with people. He often invites friends over for dinner and loves cooking and grilling outside. Scott is passionate about science fiction especially Star Trek and loves the Comic Strip Calvin and Hobbes. He is an avid learner, always reading books on leadership, business, ministry, and missions looking to explore the new frontier while bringing people together from around the world. Contact Scott, or call ext. 1005

 

Patrick SpragueNational Communications Director - Patrick Sprague

Patrick began full-time ministry over 12 years ago and has served as a worship leader, creative arts director, and operations pastor, as well as helping plant a church in Utah. Most recently, Patrick worked as Content Director in a marketing agency. He's a strategic leader and has a deep passion for empowering the local church. Patrick and his wife Leah, along with their daughters Andi and Amelia live in Ashland, Ohio, and attend Park Street Brethren Church. Contact Patrick or call ext. 1005