CVC Staff

Inviting People to New Life in Christ

Chad Allen

Lead Pastor

Chad is the Lead Pastor of Cuyahoga Valley Church. Born and raised in California, he made the decision to follow Christ as a teenager. Feeling a call to ministry right out of high school, he served 20 years as Youth Pastor in Oakdale, California. He then answered God’s call to be “re-deployed” to Cleveland in 2010 and has joined the Lord’s work to reach and restore Northeast Ohio with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He is celebrating 30 years of ministry. Chad holds a BS in Religious Studies and a Masters in Theological Studies from Liberty University. Chad and his wife, Rica, married in 1993, have been blessed to grow their family through adoption, including one son, Cruz, and two daughters, Isabelle and Faith. Chad enjoys traveling to new places and trying new experiences with his family. You’ll often see him on a motorcycle, at the golf course, movie theater, gun range, racquetball court, or hiking in the Metroparks, usually with a family member or friend.

Brian Howell

Invite Pastor

Brian oversees all areas of ministry at CVC, including CVCKids, CVCYouth, Community Life, Worship Arts, and Missions. He holds a BA in Music and Business from Anderson University (Indiana). Brian surrendered his heart to Christ while a junior in college. After 14 years traveling the world as a musical director and keyboardist for several Christian artists, he is passionate about serving Christ at CVC. Brian is married to Jennifer, and they have 3 teenage daughters – Emily, Meg, and Sophie. Brian loves biking, reading, and great music.

Gregg Jacobsen

Pastor of Administration

Born and raised in Cleveland, Gregg spent 22 years in business before joining the staff at CVC in 1999. He has a passion to use his pastoral and administrative gifts to help reach more people for Christ. Gregg holds a B.S. degree in Administration from St. Louis University, and a Master’s degree in management from Case Western Reserve University.  He is married to Michele (Wagner), a Christian singer-songwriter. They have one son, Chris, who is pursuing a calling in ministry, and is married to Whitney. Favorite things to do are spending time with close friends, sailing, cooking and enjoying a Dr. Pepper.

Rick Duncan

Founding Pastor, Teacher, and Leadership Development

Rick and his wife, Maryanne, relocated to Northeast Ohio to pursue their passion to plant a new church that would reach the unchurched, planting CVC in 1987. He continues his role at CVC through regular teaching, as well as leadership development. He also serves with the North American Mission Board’s Send Network as a Certified Professional Trainer. Rick holds a BA in Religious Studies from Vanderbilt University, and his Masters of Divinity from Mid-America Seminary. He and Maryanne were married in 1976, and have three grown sons, a daughter-in-law, and two grandsons. Some of Rick’s favorite things are reading, using fountain pens, sharing what’s he’s learning to help others take their best next step, taking short vacation trips with his family (including the grandkids!), watching Vanderbilt baseball (where he played for 4 years), enjoying fall in Cleveland, and seeking to live in light of truths in Romans 8.

Rick Eimers

Serve Pastor

If you want to get involved serving at CVC, in the community locally, or even globally, Pastor Rick will be the one we’d encourage you to talk to to because he’s our Serve Pastor! He has a heart to see people using their gifts for the Kingdom. He’s the creative, visionary type, so he’s often coming up with lots of ideas for helping people use their gifts for the Kingdom in ways that match their passion and gift sets. He graduated from Clarks Summit University with a BA in Youth Ministry and Bible as well as an MA from Cairn University in Christian Counseling. He loves his dazzling wife Brooke, and his children Charlotte, Sami and Jordan. Pastor Rick rocks the health food life and is an unapologetic yard sale aficionado.

Becca Ferguson

Director of Community Life // Women's Ministry

In her role as the Women’s Ministry Director, Becca works to oversee the equipping, discipleship, and development of women at CVC. She is passionate about helping women come to know the Lord more deeply by growing in knowledge of and confidence in His Word. Becca holds a BA in Public Relations from the University of South Carolina and a Master of Divinity from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. She and her husband Luke have been married since 2017. Becca enjoys exploring new places and trying new foods with Luke. She also loves reading, hiking, and meeting up with friends over coffee!

Nate Green

Worship Pastor

Nate serves as the Worship Pastor at Cuyahoga Valley Church. He sees the importance of meeting together as a church and proclaiming the excellencies of Him who called us out of darkness into light is vital to worshiping God in spirit and truth (1 Peter 2:9, John 4:24). Nate has a BA in Evangelism and Discipleship from Moody Bible Institute, and he speaks Spanish fluently. He has served the Lord in various ministries since young adulthood and has been part of the Worship Arts Ministry since 2008. Nate and his wife, Meagan, have 6 (wonderful) children. Drinking coffee and hunting are two of his favorite activities.

Denise Petek

CVCKids Minister

Denise led her first children’s ministry at 18, and has loved ministering to children and their families for almost 40 years. Her 18 years with CVC have allowed her to pursue her passion of encouraging parents to spiritually lead their children, and to make church a place children love to come. Kids at CVC know Denise for minions, cartwheels, Bible storytelling, and a certain “stupid human trick” you’ll have to ask them about! Denise has been married to Tom for 32 years, and they have been blessed with four adult children, two daughters-in-law, and six grandchildren.

Dale Piscura

Pastor of Men’s Discipleship

Dale serves as a Pastor, joining the CVC staff in 2000. He has served in several ministry areas over the years and has been part of CVC since 1987, where he currently leads the Men’s Ministry. Dale holds a Master’s Degree in Biblical Counseling from Liberty University. His early career was spent teaching and coaching in the Solon Public Schools for over 25 years before entering ministry-full time. He enjoys hiking, biking for pleasure, par 3 golf, and is a die-hard Cleveland Indians fan. He is a lifelong learner and a devoted follower of Jesus. A native Clevelander, Dale and his wife Jackie were married in 1976 and have 4 adult sons: Josh, Dave, Steve and Mark. They also have 5 grandchildren and too many cats.

Dean Siley

Pastor of Community Life, Care & Connections

Dean came to CVC when he joined the young adult team in January, 2004. In his current role as Pastor of Community Life, Care & Connections, he provides overall leadership to LifeGroups, Care, Benevolence, Membership, Baptism, and New Believers. His passion is to develop leaders and challenge them to use their gifts to glorify God and build a unified community that is spiritually, physically, and mentally healthy. He and his wife, Susan, were married in 2006 and enjoy being the parents of 4 children. In his spare time, you’ll find Dean on the towpath or in the MetroParks, contemplating social interactions and behaviors, along with practicing new counseling techniques on friends. Dean holds a Master of Arts in Clinical Counseling from Ashland Theological Seminary (2012) and a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies from Kent State University (2002).

Joe Valenti

Equip Pastor

Joe Valenti leads the Equip Team which comprises the staff and volunteers and lead the various ministries directly related to spiritual growth and community (kids, youth, young adults, men’s & women’s ministry, and Generous Life). Joe is also one of the primary members of our preaching team. Joe has served at CVC for over 18 years preaching, leading worship, and leading Next Generation ministries. Joe and his wife Linda met at CVC and enjoy laughing, boating, and hanging out with their two kids – Grace and Logan. Joe holds an MA in Theology and enjoys reading, fishing, hunting, good BBQ, country music, adventures, and live theater. More at joevalenti.me.

Pam Campisi

Custodian

Pam serves on the custodian team. She’s married to Tom (1976) and the mother of 3 sons—Christopher, Todd, and Nicholas. Grandmother of 6 grandsons and 1 granddaughter. Her heart is to serve whenever and wherever He calls her.  Pam is involved in the ministry of prayer and offering the hope in Christ to walk free from addiction, Hope Over Heroin.

Naomi Deva

Social Media Strategist

Naomi is the Social Media Strategist at CVC, who manages the CVC social media Facebook and Instagram pages while also producing the photography and videography used for CVC marketing. She is passionate about the creative arts and wishes to use these passions for God’s glory. Naomi is currently working towards achieving a Business Management Degree with a concentration in Small Business Management at Cuyahoga Community College. She and her husband Alex have been married since November of 2019. Naomi is also a professional photographer on the side and enjoys helping others cherish special moments in their lives through photographs. Naomi enjoys caring for her numerous plants, thrift shopping, catching up with friends over coffee, and visiting new restaurants, bookstores, and cafes.

Ryan Duncan

Custodian

Ryan is a custodian at Cuyahoga Valley Church. He helps keep the building clean, set up and tear down for events, and locks the building at night, among other tasks. One of the things he’s accomplished is learning to use the carpet cleaner. He has two brothers, Alan and Evan, and two nephews, Ethan and Caleb, who he enjoys spending time with. He also likes to go to the movies with his family and friends.

Gina Flower

Serve Department Assistant

Gina assists in managing the operations of the Serve Department under the direct supervision of the Pastor of Serve. This includes managing the administrative tasks pertaining to CVCGO, The Big 10 Ministry Partners, Regional & Global trips, Serve In opportunities, Church Plants, Community Engagement and Disaster Relief. Gina’s favorite thing to do is to spend time with her family, especially outdoors in the sunshine. Her happy place is Marco Island, Florida so it makes sense that her favorite week of every year is the week they spend all together on the beach. They consider Marco Island their “home away from home”. Gina has been attending CVC for 26 years and has 3 adult children, DJ, Allie & Julia and son-in-law, Seth.

Jeff Ford

Technical Assistant – CVCKids

Jeff joined the team in 2016 and is responsible for the technical needs of CVCKids, including coordinating sound, video and lighting for “blast!” productions, Night to Shine and Sports Camp events, as well as technical support in children’s classrooms. He also produces video and animation for the children’s ministry and occasionally for the weekend services. He has been producing video for 20+ years. He has a Bachelor of Science in Multidisciplinary Studies (Computer Science, Religion) and a Masters degree in Religious Education, both from Liberty University.

Jeff has been married to his wife Leigh Ann since 1993 and they are the proud parents of six kids: Nathan (1994), Hannah (1995), Libby (1997), Rachel (1999), Aaron (2001), and Jacob (2006).

Kelly Garcia

Pastoral Assistant of Care, Community and Invite/Reception Manager

Kelly Garcia is the Pastoral Assistant for Care, Connections & Invite as well as the Reception Manager at Cuyahoga Valley Church. In this role, she works in many areas to serve the members and attenders of CVC. Kelly has also been an Occupational Therapist for over 25 years. As an OT, she has traveled the country writing protocols for ICU and developing Occupational Therapy Assistant programs for accreditation. She is a single Mom of 11 year-old twins.

Patty Highlander

Childcare Coordinator, CVCKids

Patty, known as “Ms. Patty” to the kids, is the Childcare Coordinator at CVC. She worked as a preschool teacher for 10 years before joining the CVC staff. She truly loves teaching children about how much God loves them. She is also a nanny for a CVC family. Patty has been married for 37 years to her husband, Don, and God has blessed them with 4 children. Ryan, Justin, and Tyler all of whom are married and starting families of their own; and a daughter, Sarah, who is a junior at Ohio University. They have 2 grandchildren Lorelai and Grant, and another on the way to join their family soon. She also loves spending time with her dog, walks in the Metroparks, and time with her girlfriends.

Jack Hopkins

Assistant Director of Ministry, CVCYouth

Jack works with CVCYouth middle and high school students at CVC, and those within the surrounding schools. His main responsibilities include production for events, video media, as well as outreach to the area schools. He enjoys leading worship and building relationships with any and all people around him. Jack holds a marketing degree from the University of Toledo (2020). You can often find Jack playing frisbee, riding a long board, playing games with friends, or learning a new instrument. Jack is recently married to his beautiful wife Emma.

Steve James

Technical Arts Director

Steve joined the CVC family in 2019. He oversees the audiovisual infrastructure, technical needs of various events, and awesome volunteers on the technical arts team. Steve graduated from Full Sail University (2007) with a degree in show production. He is an audio engineer at heart, having always loved the energy and excitement of live music and events. When Steve isn’t behind a computer screen or audio console, he can be found tinkering, riding his Triumph, trying new foods with his wife, Nicolle, (who he loves more than his motorcycle), or relaxing to music with a slow, grooving tempo that matches his laid-back personality well.

Lorrie Kaczmarek

Receptionist/Administrative Assistant

Lorrie serves as a receptionist/administrative assistant at CVC and performs routine operations of our office to provide informational support.  Lorrie’s ministry includes being a friendly, welcoming servant to all who call and visit CVC. She serves on the CVC Altar Prayer Team, as well as on a Prayer Team for CVCYouth and CVCKids.  Lorrie and her dearly beloved late husband, Norman, have three wonderful adult children — Cheryl, Martin and David.  Lorrie also has seven precious grandchildren.

Kristy Klasa

Executive Team Project Manager

Kristy is the Executive Team Project Manager, joining our team in 2015. A native Clevelander, Kristy holds a BA in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Counseling, both from Liberty University. After spending some time working as a professional counselor, she became increasingly drawn toward ministry because it allowed her to unapologetically point people toward a relationship with Jesus Christ. She also wanted to concentrate on the administrative side of ministry. Her role at CVC allows her to do both. She loves the multi-faceted nature of her role. She serves in CVC Worship Arts in the Choir and on the vocal team. She loves music and spending time with her family.

Lauren Meyer

Youth Ministry Director

Lauren plans and executes all events in CVCYouth while creating easy on-ramps for students in 6th-12th grade to be discipled to become more like Jesus. Lauren served as an intern at CVCYouth in 2016, but was hired on as the Director of Discipleship and Events in June, 2018. Lauren has a B.S. and M.A. in counseling from Clarks Summit University. Lauren loves Cleveland and takes every opportunity to go exploring with her husband, Austin. The two never intended to stay in Cleveland long but the 216 has quickly become home to them.

Dahlia Orth

Project Manager // Equip Team

Dahlia Orth serves as a volunteer staff member at CVC. She is a business owner who specializes in project management and administrative processes. Dahlia uses these gifts and skills to help the Equip Team execute on key priorities and major projects. Dahlia moved to Cleveland in 2014 to be an intern with CVCYouth while completing her master’s degree. Soon after she completed her degree, she joined the staff at CVC, working in a variety of roles before starting her business and taking it full time in 2019. She has also been a CVCYouth leader for 8 years and is passionate about seeing students come to know Christ. Dahlia has a B.S in Sports and Health Science and a M.A in Organizational Leadership from Clarks Summit University.

Jackie Praskavich

Accounting and Human Services Manager

Jackie serves as our Accounting and Human Services Manager at CVC, responsible for ensuring that resources provided by God’s people are used for His glory. She has a BA in Accounting from Cleveland State University, and more than 30 years of accounting experience as a CPA. She is married to her husband, Dan (1985), and they have two adult sons, Chris and Anthony. Jackie loves the beach, and the sound of the waves – it is her happy place.

Lisa Richardson

Pastoral Assistant, Next Gen

Lisa assists the CVCYouth staff in planning events, working on lead measure data, and with girls’ LifeGroups in Collide. She holds a degree in Educational Ministries from Clark’s Summit University (2020). If she is not working, you will find her drinking coffee, watching Disney+ or hanging with friends. Originally from Orlando, Florida, she is the youngest of 4 children, and an Aunt to three beautiful nieces.

Darlene Sawyer

Financial Assistant

Darlene has served as CVC’s Financial Assistant since 2005. Darlene studied at Akron University. She has a heart for hospitality and serving others. “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace” (1 Peter 4:10). Darlene has three grown children: Jennifer, Lauren, and Thomas.

Traci Schimpf

Pastoral Assistant, LifeGroup Connector

Traci is a Pastoral Assistant to the Community Life Team, and the LifeGroup Connector for CVC, joining the Cuyahoga Valley Church staff in 2017, where they have been members for 15 years. She is a 1993 graduate of Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication. She enjoys serving others behind the scenes, and is thankful for the opportunity to help people find meaningful relationships with other believers through LifeGroups. She and her husband Matt live in Brecksville and have two children, Madelyn and Luke, and recently have become empty nesters. Traci participates in Momtourage as a Mentor Mom, and her favorite hobby is playing competitive tennis.

Tony Scialabba

Young Adult Director

Tony has the privilege of working with the Young Adults at CVC. His aim as the Young Adult Director is to walk alongside, equip, and launch young adults into the harvest fields of Northeast Ohio and beyond. Tony has an MA in Intercultural Studies from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a BA in Christian Ministry from Trinity International University. His family served in Southeast Asia for over a decade focused on church planting among an unreached people group. Tony enjoys time with family, going on outdoor adventures, and reading good books. He enjoys coffee, drums, and good conversations. He is married to Kalyn, and Dad to 4 children: Selah, Kadence, Eden, and Thomas.

Raquel Schors

Director of Blast!, CVCKids

Raquel Schors began attending CVC long ago as a second grader in 1990. She was an active participant in the children’s ministry, so when she graduated from Cleveland State University with a degree in Music Education in 2005, she gladly took a job on the CVCKids’ staff as the Director of blast!, our CVCKids production for families. Although Raquel works in a variety of capacities to help the children of CVC live new, her main responsibilities include overseeing blast! and managing the preschool curriculum. She is passionate about teaching, cooking, children’s books, old homes, and her own, wonderful children, Oscar and Frankie.

Mike Slago

Custodian

Mike performs custodial and maintenance duties based on facility and ministry needs, relying on Christ to accomplish them. Mike attended Arizona State School of Social Work, specializing in juvenile rehabilitation. He formerly worked in the aerospace industry, and was the lead carpenter for log home company Badger Brothers. He is a gifted craftsman. Mike is supported and loved by 3 Christian sisters and his Mom.

Pete Trybus

Facility Manager

Pete Trybus joined the CVC staff as our Facility Manager in March, 2022. Pete manages the facility and grounds for both the Broadview Heights and the Brunswick Campuses. He oversees the team that does custodial work, facility maintenance, lawn care, building needs, and supports other ministries. Pete says that graduating from Marine Corps boot camp was a very proud moment in his life, and that he is proud of defending this country. Pete’s family moved to America from Poland when he was a toddler, and he quickly learned about hard work. Outside of work, Pete enjoys sitting by a fire, spending time with family, and listening to music. Pete is married to Tonya, and they have three children: Zach, Nathan, and Nicole.

Laurie Weiser

Facilities Coordinator

Laurie is a 1997 graduate of Baldwin-Wallace College and has a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications.  She joined the Cuyahoga Valley Church staff in 2015 and enjoys serving the CVC body by working at the Information Center.  She also coordinates facility usage for the many groups and events here on campus and facilitates “Meet CVC” where she welcomes new guests and helps orient them to CVC.  She has been attending CVC for over 10 years and participates in MOMtourage as a Mentor Mom and enjoys walking through life with her LifeGroup.  She lives in North Royalton with her husband Dave and their three daughters Abbey, Hailey & Whitney.

Elders

CVC Elders

Chad Allen | Doug Back | Chip Bell |
Ted Chase | Ron Dick | Larry Domzalski |
Eric Mendheim | Sola Oshunniyi |

For questions or comments for the CVC Elder Team, click here.