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Pastor David Holt

Senior Pastor & Founder

Dr. David Holt has been married to Dede since 1985, and they have four children and four grandchildren. He has been a pastor for over thirty five years. David has earned degrees from the University of Georgia (BBA; 1983), Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (MDiv and ThM, 1990) and Trinity International University (DMN, 2005).

 

Pastor David served as a college pastor for four years at Grace Church, Eden Prairie, Minnesota; the Senior Pastor for seventeen years at the First Evangelical Free Church, Onalaska, Wisconsin; and the Pastor of Discipleship for four years at Watkinsville First Baptist Church, Watkinsville, GA.  He is the author of six books: Meeting You Where You Are, Pastoring with Passion, Serving with Passion, Well Done, God Does What?, and Grow Up: A Discipleship Manual for Following Jesus. His life verse is Galatians 2:20: "I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me" (ESV). 

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Shanon Hayes

Connections Pastor & Home Groups Director

Pastor Shanon Hayes has been happily married to Cathy since 1989.  They have two sons Will and Samuel.  Shanon was ordained in 1997, and has served in various ministries for over thirty seven years.  Prior to coming to Living Hope Church, in 2013, Shanon served as the senior pastor for seventeen years throughout Georgia.  

Pastor Shanon attended Tennessee Temple University and Covington Seminary and Bible College.  Pastored at Maple Grove Baptist Church in Chatsworth, Georgia; the Pastor at Broad River Baptist Church in Eastanollee, Georgia; the Pastor of Joy Baptist Church in Hull, Georgia.  

Shanon has served as an elder at Living Hope Church since 2014.

Dustin Sosebee

Worship Pastor

In 2022, Dustin joined the Living Hope team to serve as worship pastor. He and his wife Kristen also serve as the worship directors of the campus ministry UGA Wesley. Dustin and Kristen met while studying music at UGA. They happily married in 2011 and have three boys Rooks, Elias, and Jude. Dustin received his MDiv in 2018 from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. His heart is for the people of God to take up their role as worshippers of the one true God. “For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.” (Hab 2:14) Thank you Jesus!

Pastor William Mansfield has been married to his wife Krysta since 2017 and they have three children. He has earned degrees from Kennesaw State University (2016) and Asbury Theological Seminary (2022) where he completed the Masters of Divinity program. William was ordained in 2011 and has ministered in various contexts since then. He is passionate about discipling students in their walks with God, and answering any crazy questions they can come up with. William is a theology nerd, musician, bbq enthusiast, and outdoor adventurer who loves hunting, fishing, archery, and anything to do with bonfires and Jesus. 

William Mansfield

Youth-College Pastor

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Cathy Hayes

Children's Ministry Coordinator

Church Office and Communication Administrator

Cathy Hayes has been happily married to Shanon since 1989 and they have two sons, Will and Samuel. Cathy works full-time at Living Hope.  Cathy has a passion for serving children and their families, and has joyfully served in Children’s Ministry for over 20 years.  Family adventures, reading, and cooking are some of Cathy‘s favorite hobbies.  One of her favorite Bible verses is Deuteronomy 31:8 “And the Lord, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed.”

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Rich and Mary Suplita

Apologist and Outreach Directors

Rich is a native of West Virginia and a graduate of WVU and the UGA (Ph.D. in Neuroscience, 2005). Mary Kathryn hails from North Carolina and graduated from NCSU before completing her master's at Appalachian State. 

 

Rich and Mary Kathryn were born again in their early 40’s, spending several years as close friends before marrying in 2017. They have powerful testimonies of God changing the heart of a former atheist professor (Rich) and a person who was distracted by the ever-elusive “American Dream” (Mary Kathryn). They have four children: Annabel, Lydia, Ben  and Lola. 

 

The Suplitas’ heartcry is to carry the gospel to the frontlines of spiritual warfare on university campuses, outside of abortion clinics, and “to the highways and hedges” throughout the southeast. 

Angela Patterson

Director of Prayer Ministry and Director of Women's Ministry

Angela is a wife, a mother, a grandmother, and an intercessor. She came to LHC in 2018 where the Holy Spirit radically transformed her walk with the Lord. She has a heart for intercessory prayer, for women’s ministry, and for seeing others find their own journey to worship and to intimacy with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. She has authored two books and loves to write and to share truth.  She was married to her husband, Danny T. “Dino”, for 40 years before his home going in May of 2024. They have 7 adult children. Angela spent twenty-nine years home educating their children. They also have 11 beautiful grandchildren. One of Angela’s favorite verses is Psalm 89:1 “I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever: with my mouth will I make known thy faithfulness to all generations.”

Dustin Butler

Director of Men's Ministry

Dustin and his wife Lori have been married since 2008 and they have 2 amazing kids, Caden and Kirsten! He graduated from college with a bachelor's degree in Biology and a minor in Chemistry with intentions to pursue medical school. Instead, Dustin was ultimately led by the Lord to go on staff with a worldwide missions organization called the Navigators, whom he served with for 18 years. In 2024, the Lord led he and his wife to transition from the Navigators to begin serving with a new missions organization called Oaks International.  In addition to serving with Oaks, in the summer of 2021 he came on staff with Living Hope part-time to oversee men’s ministry and discipleship ministries. He and his family love Living Hope and are passionate about seeing "laborers" (Matt. 9) for God's Kingdom of all ages raised up whom God will use to transform the world through generational discipleship and evangelism.

Phyllis Steinborn

Director of Celebrate Recovery

Phyllis serves as Living Hope’s Celebrate Recovery Director. She has been involved with CR for over 8 years. This is a program that helps folks recover from life’s hurts, habits, and hang-ups that are keeping them from coming closer to Christ.  

Phyllis loves the Lord, has a heart to minister God’s healing to others and to serve this community. She founded Athens Master’s Academy of Fine Arts and for 3 years served as director.  In addition, she served on the Executive Board for Athens Area March of Dimes and was their Special Events Coordinator for 8 years. She also served 3 years as co-chair for one of the Clarke County’s Citizen Panel Review Boards.

Phyllis attended Jacksonville State University and Auburn University in Alabama where she majored in Interior Design with a minor in Home Economics.  She was married to her husband, Mike, for 36 years before his passing in 2021. They were foster parents for 11 years and cared for 51 children. Phyllis has one daughter, Eva.

Steve Pierce

Director of Missions

Steve currently serves as the East Georgia Area Team Lead for Perspectives USA. Steve has been joyfully married to Kathy since 1986 and both serve on the prayer team as well as the mission team. He caught the "mission bug" on his trip to Oaxaca, Mexico and is passionate about sharing God’s heart and desire for people of all nations, tongues, and cultures to worship Him and be part of His family and Kingdom. Steve is also committed to helping members of the Body of Christ understand the variety of ways they can participate with God in that work and in identifying their best role in His plan.

Since that first mission trip, Steve and Kathy have been to Brazil, El Salvador, and Jordan. Steve previously served in the US Air Force and as a pastor in a small Georgia church. In their free time he and Kathy enjoy spending time with friends and family, traveling, exploring waterfalls, cooking, and reading.

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Judy Childs

Director of Strategic Placement and Leadership Support

Judy is married to her beloved husband, Mark, of 40 years. They are parents to Christa and Josh, in-laws to Allan and Hannah, and grandparents to their “grand-loves”, Hallie Grace and Maddie Brooke, and Everleigh Rose.  Judy is a life-long learner, educator and educational administrator. She received her B.S.Ed. from Georgia Southern University, her M.Ed. from UGA, and her Ed.S from Lincoln Memorial University. Her life’s mission is to daily live out Jesus’ greatest commandment; to “love the Lord and to love others” (Matthew 22:37-39), living by the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). Judy loves leading mission trips, reading, hanging out with family and friends and being outdoors whenever she can.

Emily Caldwell

Assistant to Children's Ministry Coordinator

Emily started helping in children’s ministry as a young lady.  She helped lead church camps, VBS, and growing up she spent most of her summers travelling all over Georgia spreading God's word.  Emily is from Tallapoosa in west Georgia.  She has been attending Living Hope since 2021.  She started volunteering in the Living Hope KIDS Children's Ministry in 2021, and in 2022 God opened the door for her to join the part-time staff at Living Hope.  One of Emily's favorite Bible verses is Psalm 51:10 “Create in me a pure heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.”  Emily faithfully prays this over the children and wants to see the children live out the life that God has planned for each one.   

Matt Rice

Director of Technical Ministries

Matt was born and raised in the Athens area and has served Christ since a young age. This has included several missions trips throughout the years as well as assisting with various youth and men's ministries. He and his wife, Cindy, have been attending Living Hope Church since 2022. In addition to leading the Tech Team at Living Hope, he is also active in the Noblemen ministry and is passionate about serving others through discipleship. Matt is an outdoor enthusiast and enjoys hunting, fishing, and camping. One of his favorite verses is "And I have been a constant example of how you can help those in need by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive"  .’ (Acts 20:35 NLT)

Stephanie Gibson

Administrative Assistant to Pastor David

Stephanie was raised in southeastern Kentucky before moving to Athens in 2018.  Beginning in 2020, God used Living Hope to lead her out of a lifestyle of legalism and religion and into a loving and intimate relationship with Him. She has a heart for serving others, discipleship, and helping others walk out of religion and into a relationship with Christ. She received a Bachelor of Arts in English (2017) from Union College in Barbourville, KY, and so loves to help others develop and strengthen their writing skills. She also loves reading, cooking, her dog, and listening to music. Her life-verse is Jeremiah 29:11: “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’” (NIV).

Richard Mata

Technical Ministries Assistant

Richard, an IT graduate from Nkumba University, was raised in Kampala, Uganda. He relocated to the United States in 2013 and has been happily married to Stella since January 2023. Richard has made a significant impact by initiating live streaming of Sunday services in 2014. This forward-thinking move has enabled Living Hope Church to extend its reach globally, spreading the good news of our Lord Jesus Christ to people around the world. Richard's innovative approach to technology has played a pivotal role in enhancing the church's outreach efforts and fostering a broader sense of community. He loves traveling and doing charity work. His life verse is 2 Corinthians 5:17 (ESV): "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”

BODY OF ELDERS

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Pastor David Holt

Senior Pastor & Founder

Dr. David Holt has been married to Dede for 35 years and they have four children and 3 grandchildren.  He has been a pastor for over 30 years. David has earned degrees from the University of Georgia (BBA; 1983), Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (MDiv and ThM, 1990) and Trinity International University (DMN, 2005).

 

Pastor David served as a college pastor for four years at Grace Church, Eden Prairie, Minnesota; the Senior Pastor for 17 years at the First Evangelical Free Church, Onalaska, Wisconsin; and the Pastor of Discipleship at Watkinsville First Baptist for four years.  He is the author of five books: “Meeting You Where You Are,” “Pastoring with Passion,” "Serving with Passion," "Well Done," and "God Does What?"

Shanon Hayes

Shanon is married to Cathy and they have two sons – William, Liberty University graduate, and Samuel, Emmanuel College graduate, and a "daughter in love" Grace.  Shanon was previously a pastor in Chatsworth, GA, Eastanollee, GA, and Hull, GA. Shanon attended Tennessee Temple and Covington Theological Seminary. Currently, Shanon and his wife Cathy both serve on the staff at Living Hope.  Shanon loves spending time with his best friend Cathy and their sons at the beach, or on the farm, and serving the Lord together.

Robert Sekandi

Robert was born and raised in Kampala, Uganda, and graduated from Makerere University of Uganda, with a degree in Business Administration majoring in Accounting. He has been married to Dr Juliet Sekandi for 14 years. They have five girls and one son.

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David Russell

David and Kim have been married since 1988 and have 5 children and 2 grandchildren. David has been retired from the University of Georgia since 2021 and is now fulltime owner/operator of Russell and Sons Farm in Colbert. Kim has a Bachelor's of Business Administration from the University of Georgia and a Masters of Art in Teaching from Piedmont College. Kim is a retired teacher from the Clarke County School System. In addition to serving as an Elder,  David serves in the Living Hope intercessory prayer ministry. Kim serves in the Living Hope Women of Courage and the Intercessory Prayer ministry. They are passionate about praying for Living Hope and its members.

David and Kim enjoy spending time with their children and grandchildren living life on the farm gardening, tending the cattle and enjoying God's great outdoors.

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Lucius Malcolm

Lucius and Jennifer have been married since 1987 and have 3 children and 7 grandchildren. Lucius has a bachelors degree of Music from FSU and Jennifer a bachelor of Science & Education degree from Valdosta State University and a Masters in Career Counseling at UGA. Lucius ended up as a Chartered Financial Consultant when he retired and he and his wife, Jennifer continue to help families to budget and handle their finances properly in the body of Christ. His passion is discipling men for Christ and then watching them disciple others. He remains active in the music ministry at Living Hope Church as an assistant to Pastor Sosebee and a member of the Praise Team. 

Scott Swain

Scott and his wife, Susan, have been married for 27 years.  They have fraternal twins, Landyn (son), and Londyn (daughter) who are about to enter high school.  Scott and Susan graduated from Lee University, Scott with B.S. Pre-Med, 1997 and MAT, 2000 and Susan with B.S. in Early Childhood Education, 1996.  He is a public school teacher of 22 years and during this time, he has coached tennis, golf and cross country and was a FCA huddle coach.  Moving to Athens in 2007, he pastored youth at a local church for five years.  Scott enjoys spending time with his family, hiking, camping and being outdoors.  He also enjoys pouring into the next generation of believers helping them see their full potential in the Lord.

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Ralph Motsinger Adv. Elder

Ralph has been married to Lavon for 61 years, has 2 sons, 5 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. He has a doctorate in Plant Pathology from Auburn. He was on the faculty at Univ. of Maryland, Auburn Univ., L.S.U.; College of Agriculture, Malaysia, & UGA. He and Lavon were missionaries to Honduras for 5 years.

February 25, 2024 we lost one of the Godliest men in our church, Ralph Motsinger. Ralph served as an Elder, and he and Lavon have led a home group for years. Their marriage was a shining example of love and devotion. If you needed love, hospitality and wisdom, just spend time with the Motsingers.

Ralph's obituary is available at Lord and Stephens, 

https://www.lordandstephens.com/obituary/DrRalph-Motsinger

Jeff Paulk Adv. Elder

 Jeff has been married to Jan since 1982 and has two married sons, Ben and Nicole and Wil and Meghan, and a Granddaughter, Evie (2). Jeff was an F-16 and F-15 Instructor pilot in the USAF for 24 years and retired as a Colonel. He played on the 1980 UGA National Championship football team and was the head football coach of the State Champion, Johnson Ferry Christian Academy in 2015. He currently works for BGI, Inc as an F-35 Subject Matter Expert and Senior Operational Analyst.

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