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

Executive Pastor of Ministries

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

Executive 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.

Joshua Stone

Campus Pastor

Josh and his team are working to launch a campus of CVC in the Strongsville/Brunswick area. Josh loves to see people come to faith in Jesus and go public with their faith through baptism. Josh holds Bachelor’s and Masters of Divinity degrees from Liberty University, a Masters of Theology from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and is currently completing his PhD from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Josh and his wife Deborah have three young children: Judah, Rebecca, and Hannah. He is an outdoorsman, a reader, and loves to spend time with his family.

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 shrimp and grits, books by C.S. Lewis, 60’s music, the beach, baseball, fall in Cleveland, and Romans chapter 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.

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

CVCYouth Pastor

Joe Valenti is the pastor of CVCYouth – our ministry to middle school and high school students. Joe has served at CVC for over 15 years preaching, leading worship, and caring for the students of CVCYouth. Joe and his wife Linda met at CVC and enjoy laughing, boating, watching The Voice, 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.

Jennifer Bond

Serve In Coordinator

As the Serve In Coordinator, Jennifer comes alongside CVC ministries and creatively seeks out wonderful volunteers to help with our various needs and events. She has been able to work with a variety of ministries and nonprofits. One of her most memorable and meaningful positions was working with a foster and adoption nonprofit. She was able to pray over the files of the little ones who needed a loving placement and love on sweet babies who would occasionally come into the office. She loves spending time with her family, reading, drinking good coffee and painting furniture. Jennifer has a wonderful husband, Daniel, and two littles: Asher (6 years old) and Grace (4 years old.)

Stacie Brandt

Global Serve Coordintor

Stacie was born and raised in Iowa. She has her Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education from Clarks Summit University. After completing her degree Stacie came to CVC as an intern in the Youth and Missions department in order to learn more about ministry. Stacie now serves as the Global Serve Coordinator and volunteers with CVCYouth as a lifegroup leader. Stacie loves to serve and help out wherever she can. She is passionate about mentoring students as they make their faith their own. If not at church, Stacie can be found in a coffee shop, with friends playing board games, or at home doing something crafty and enjoying a good action movie.

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.

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.

Melissa Erikson

Technical Arts Assistant

Melissa Erikson serves at CVC as their Videographer/Media Specialist. Since 2007, God has been leading her on a journey of bringing Him the glory through visual storytelling, and it is a daily joy getting to share about God’s faithfulness to those around us through videos, photos, and social media. When not behind the lens or computer, Melissa can be found trail running, reading anything and everything, hanging out with her cats, or spending time with friends. She happily embraces being the “cool aunt” and friend to all high schoolers at CVCYouth.

 

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).

Jeannie Hasman

IT Project Manager

Planning and coordinating the technology needs of CVC, Jeannie has been serving CVC since 2008. With decades of working in IT outside of the church, it has been a pleasure to bring her gift for planning and implementing technology for our attenders and staff. When not working with technology, she is working on home renovations and enjoying the company of her husband and four adult children.

Ron Hebebrand

Custodian

Ron is member of the custodial team at CVC. He is a state-certified electrician, recently retiring after 47 years working in that field. He leads a LifeGroup of men weekly, and is the Bass section leader in the CVC Worship Choir. He and his wife Kim have been married 45 years, and have 2 daughters and 4 grandchildren. They believe James 1:27, and effort to make it a part of their everyday life.

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.

Kristen Hopkins

Local Serve Coordinator

As Local Serve Coordinator, Kristen is blessed to support and serve our Big 10 partners, church plants and Appalachia ministry. She is hopeful to encourage and facilitate the entire CVC family to get involved with local missions. She has enjoyed being a part of different local and global ministries over the years, including being a Women’s Ministry Director and a Pastor’s Wife. Currently, Kristen and her husband Mike are working with CVCyouth as lifegroup leaders. Kristen is blessed to be married to Mike for over 25 years and is a passionate Mom to six children ages 23 to 13.

Helen Hren

Receptionist

Helen was born and raised in the Cleveland area. She has a Bachelors in Science in Law Enforcement Administration from Kent State University, was Safety & Security Director for 2 Sears Stores for 15 years. Helen Married to Myron & we have lived in Seven Hills since 1991. In 2008, she heard the gospel at CVC on Easter, was baptized that summer, then they became members of CVC. She likes serving behind the scenes to help others.

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 six precious grandchildren —  Kyle, Jade, twins Sophia and Gabriella, Lucas, and Gabby Grace.  She is looking forward to the arrival of her 7th grandchild, little baby boy Kaczmarek, in December.

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.

Grant Koehler

Custodian

Dianne Leers-Valek

Administrative Assistant, CVCKids

Dianne serves as Administrative Assistant in our CVCKids area, a position she has held since 2007. You will often see her registering kids at our foyer check-in area, where she loves to meet new families and guests. She is a native Clevelander, and graduated from Normandy High School, also attending Cuyahoga Community College. Dianne is married to Tim, and has two adult children, Pat and Kellie. She enjoys spending time with family, traveling, writing, and reading.

Kevin Lorow

Worship Arts Assistant / Associate Director of Young Adult Discipleship and Events

Kevin is the Worship Arts Assistant, assisting in the planning and preparation, as well as regularly leading worship at CVC. Kevin graduated in 2016 from Clark’s Summit University with a BA in Youth Pastoral Studies. He married his wife, Carolyn, in 2018. Kevin loves spending time in his chair with a cup of coffee and a good book, particularly ones written by his favorite author, J.R.R. Tolkien. You can also often find him playing any one of a number of classic Nintendo games. He’s also a dog lover, baseball fanatic, and loves to discuss the theology of worship.

Lauren Meyer

Director of Youth Discipleship and Events

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.

Jackie Piscura

Women’s Ministry Interim Director

Jackie Piscura serves as Women’s Ministry Interim Director as of August, 2019. She is responsible for oversight and direction of Women’s Life Groups. A native Clevelander, Jackie is a retired Medical/Surgical/ICU Nurse. She married Dale Piscura, CVC Pastor of Men’s Discipleship, in 1976, and they have 4 adult sons and 5 grandchildren – finally some girls! Jackie is passionate about pursuing God in His Word and in prayer. She also enjoys reading, hiking, spending time with grandchildren, new-found drawing skills, and making things beautiful.

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.

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.

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

Facility Manager

Mike coordinates, delegates, and 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.

Greta Smith

Pastoral Assistant, Care and Connections

Greta serves as the Pastoral Assistant of the Care and Connections Ministry, and has served on staff since 2002. You’ll hear from her when you express an interest in baptism, membership, or our special- interest LifeGroups. She co-leads CVC’s GriefShare group, and has a heart for those who are hurting due to the loss of a loved one. In her spare time, you’ll find Greta in her kitchen whipping up something gluten-free, hiking in the area’s MetroParks, or digging in her container gardens. She lives in Strongsville with her husband, Kent and their two chocolate Siamese cats, Coco and Chip.

Laurie Weiser

Receptionist / 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.

Jenni Wolfenbarger

Special Needs Coordinator

Jenni joined the CVC staff in 2017 after a career in Physical Therapy in the school setting. She serves in the indispensABLE Special Needs Ministry with individuals various disabilities and medical conditions from children to adults. Jenni enjoys creating sensory-friendly and accessible environments, and has assisted other local churches to do the same. As a Mom to children with disabilities, Jenni is passionate about helping special needs families thrive. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Sciences and Master’s of Public Health in Program Planning and Development. Jenni enjoys reading, good coffee and spending time with her husband Eric and six children: Emilia, Jakob, Kofi, Joy, Eve and Josie.

Elders

CVC Elders

Chad Allen
Doug Back
Chip Bell
Tim Brooks
Ted Chase
Ron Dick
Larry Domzalski
Eric Mendheim
Duane Myatt