Assistant to Church Services Support Team
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Demetra Bennett serves as an assistant to the church services support team, ensuring initiatives and events effectively meet the needs of BCM/D churches.
A native of Illinois, Bennett grew up in a Christian home and went to church regularly. With four children in her family, getting some alone time with her mom was special, and it was during one of those times that God spoke to Bennett’s heart.
“My mother led me to the Lord while out walking one summer night to get an Italian Ice. I was about six or seven at the time,” she said. It was a process though. Her mother, on their fun outing, began sharing about what it would be like if we all knew Jesus and would be saved from sin and one day go to heaven. Demetra had heard the Scriptures throughout her life but thought the message was for adults. Later she prayed, telling God she wanted to be saved and to go to heaven one day. She followed it up by walking down an aisle during a Sunday service to make a public profession, and she was baptized a few years later.
After high school, Bennett earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from Illinois State University and then a Master of Business Administration from the University of Illinois. In the past, she has worked in insurance, automotive, and financial fields. Most recently she worked in a staff support position with Anne Arundel County Public Schools, and she served as a church bookkeeper for more than 17 years.
In addition to her current professional role, Bennett ministers as a pastor’s wife. Her husband, Marty Bennett, is the senior pastor of Life Connection Church in Severn, Maryland. She also works 15 hours per week at Life Connection as a bookkeeper, and she serves on the church’s hospitality team, praise teams, and children’s ministry. She and Marty enjoy their family. They have three children — an adult son and two teenagers.
“It gives me joy to have the opportunity to serve in an organization that was so instrumental in helping our church become rooted and established,” she said. “I know first-hand the valuable church support provided by the BCM/D, and I can attest to the consistent wisdom, encouragement, and accountability that is so generously given to those churches within the organization.”
Children's Ministry & VBS Consultant
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Kris Buckman joined the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware as the children’s ministry and VBS consultant.
A Maryland native, she has been a member of Tri-County Baptist Church in Damascus, Maryland, for over 17 years. She has taught Sunday school for children of all ages, directed VBS, planned and coordinated special events, served as AWANA Commander, traveled with kids to summer camp, and, as she says, “cleaned up lots of glitter over the years!” She has also worked with June at children’s ministry events, leading breakout sessions.
As a child, Buckman attended Mt. Airy Baptist Church with her family for more than 15 years. She made a profession of faith in Christ as a child while at a Backyard Kids Club and was baptized as a young teen. She graduated from the University of Baltimore with a degree in communications.
While filling in as a preschool Sunday School teacher when her oldest son, Ben, was two, she realized that God was calling her to children’s ministry.
Looking ahead, Buckman says one of her emphases will be encouraging children’s leaders to help parents to disciple their children.
“A lot of parents know they need to disciple their children at home, but they don’t know how — many don’t know where to start,” Buckman says. She wants to provide encouragement and resources in that area.
She also wants to continue to bring children’s ministry leaders together to meet and to encourage and learn from each other. “We’re all doing the same jobs for the same purpose,” she says. “We can share ideas, learn to go to each other, and bounce ideas off one another.”
Buckman says she loves event planning for kids — VBS, Trunk or Treats, and other fun events where children will hear the Gospel and have opportunities to choose to follow Jesus.
She and Todd, her husband of 22 years, are both lifelong residents of Mt. Airy and have two sons, Ben, 17, and Jake, 12. In her spare time, she enjoys reading and vacationing with her family. She also has a passion for writing children’s ministry curriculum.
Church Planting Catalyst
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James Choi, as church planting catalyst for the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware, will assist with coaching and training church planters. Like his predecessor, Robert Kim, who retired in 2016, Choi also seeks to develop strong relationships with the convention’s Asian churches.
Choi has been a member at Capitol Hill Baptist Church, Washington, D.C., since 2015, when he participated in a pastoral internship under Dr. Mark Dever, president of 9Marks Ministry. Through it, he gained a “robust ecclesiology” and an appreciation for building healthy biblical churches and raising up leaders for the next generation, particularly in the Asian-American church.
For over 7 years, Choi served as an associate pastor, primarily ministering to English-speaking second generation Korean-Americans at Global Mission Church in Silver Spring, Md., after serving churches in Texas in worship and youth ministry.
Ordained as Southern Baptist minister in November 2011 at Global Mission Church, Choi holds a master of divinity degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and a bachelor of arts degree in political science from the University of Florida, Gainesville. He is pursuing a doctor of ministry degree at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, focused on researching and developing a helpful resource for next generation pastors to help establish healthy churches.
He and his wife, Jeri, have two children.
State Director of Evangelism
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Mark Dooley assumed the role of state director of evangelism, effective Jan. 1. In that role, he leads the efforts of BCM/D’s church services team and encourage evangelistic fruitfulness among more than 500 congregations.
Dooley brings over 34 years of ministerial and pastoral experience to the position. In addition to his ministry as pastor of Leonardtown Baptist Church, he served several terms on the BCM/D General Mission Board (GMB) and is a past GMB president. Recently, Dooley served on the Southern Baptist Convention committee on nominations. On the associational level, he served on several committees with the Potomac Baptist Association.
“Having served in BCM/D responsibilities in the past and seeing the good work the staff does, I’m excited to be a part of that and to be able to further that ministry full-time,” Dooley said. “I’m really looking forward to getting to know the pastors and their churches and helping them meet their needs.”
He is a graduate of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, earning a Master of Divinity. He and his wife Karen have four children: Hannah (27), Alex (25), Matthew (23), and Rachel (20).
Sr. Staff Accountant
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Denise DuBois serves with the Baptist Convention as senior staff accountant. She prepares payroll for both the BCM/D and Skycroft Conference Center and does the accounting for Skycroft and general ledger accounting for the BCM/D. She also ensures church planters get paid on a monthly basis by analyzing the funds received from NAMB.
Prior to her current full-time ministry, Denise served as store manager, and later as part-time accountant, for Skycroft. In years past, she was an assistant controller for a large real estate company located in Washington, D.C.
In 1988, Denise married Doug DuBois, BCM/D’s state director of evangelism and executive director of Skycroft Conference Center and later they had their daughter, Danielle. The family moved to Skycroft in 1996 when Doug was hired as the assistant resident manager.
Doug and Denise now live in Dagsboro, Del. In her spare time, when possible, Denise heads to the shoreline. “I love the beach and would spend all my time there if I could,” she said.
Evangelism and Pastoral Connection Consultant
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John Gauger, former pastor of First Baptist Church, Perryville, serves on the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware’s Church Services team as an interim Church Services consultant in the area of evangelism and pastoral connection.
In this role, Gauger visits and connects with senior pastors throughout the BCM/D and will assist congregations in strengthening their capacities and effectiveness in reaching their communities with the Gospel.
Gauger and his wife, Linda, have served together in ministry for 40 years, 27 of which were at FBC, Perryville, where “a high percentage of those we have seen trust Christ have grown to faithfully serve the Lord,” Gauger said at his retirement.
“We have seen a number become pastors, pastors’ wives, missionaries, and one campus missionary.”
Under Gauger’s pastoral leadership, the church ministered in four countries, developing especially close connections with churches in Mexico and West Africa in addition to several local missions efforts, including a Celebrate Recovery ministry, annual block parties, and various ministries of compassion. They also partner with their local middle school and even with church plants in Baltimore.
Send City Missionary, Baltimore
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Dan Hyun, pastor of The Village Church in the Hampden neighborhood of Baltimore, as a church planting catalyst for the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware, will assist with coaching and training church planters.
Hyun was raised in the greater Philadelphia area, receiving degrees in speech communication from Penn State University and a master of divinity degree and a doctor of ministry degree in urban missiology at Biblical Theological Seminary.
In 2008, he was privileged to lead a team of 11 from Grace Life Church, Baltimore, to start The Village Church “with dreams of making God famous through a diverse and multicultural expression of the Kingdom of God.”
“We didn’t start off with everything that a successful church plant should have but God has been so faithful,” shared Hyun. “Even through all the ups and downs, we’ve seen God move in mighty ways.”
Accordingly, Hyun hopes his experiences will help the next generations of church planters as they seek to reach their communities for Christ.
An avid writer, Hyun regularly shares his thoughts at LifewayPastors.com. Speaking also is a passion for Hyun, as he leads others on issues including leadership, urban ministry, justice, and church planting. In particular, he founded and directs an annual Ethnos Conference to lead the Church in conversations about multicultural mission and reconciliation.
He and his wife, Judie, have two daughters.
Women’s Ministry Consultant/Woman’s Missionary Union (WMU) Executive Director
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Melody Knox serves in a dual role for the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware. As the church strengthening specialist for women, her role is to encourage, equip and engage women by encouraging women to pray, grow as disciples and use their gifts in advancing the Kingdom. She is responsible for assisting women’s ministry leaders in offering Bible studies and events that will lead the women in their churches to a deeper understanding of God’s Word.
As the Maryland/Delaware Woman’s Missionary Union (WMU) Executive Director, Melody encourages churches to live a missional lifestyle. She is responsible for having materials for Annie Armstrong and Lottie Moon offerings mailed to BCM/D churches. She is also responsible for the annual Women on Ministry Retreat, Mother/Daughter Camp and Girls Camp held at Camp Wo-Me-To. Melody is also available to share information on human trafficking, which is escalating in our area. Ultimately, Melody’s goal is for all women to leave a godly legacy for those who come behind them.
She has been a federal employee for 24 years and is currently a program management specialist at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, in its Graduate School.
She and her husband David, have been married for 28 years and have one son, a Marine, and a daughter, who is presently employed with Johns Hopkins Hospital. She also has three adorable grandchildren. In her leisure time, Melody enjoys reading, exercising and spending time encouraging women in all walks of life.
Melody is available to meet with pastors and church leadership or to share at your church about women’s ministries.
Church Services Consultant
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Randy Millwood serves Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware churches in church strengthening, including an emphasis on leaders’ soul care, strategic disciple-making, small groups, and the Awaken church revitalization process. Randy brings to churches opportunities for spiritual depth, honest evaluation, and soothing encouragement. He also helps pastors slow down long enough to truly hear the voice of God.
In addition to his ministries with the BCM/D, Randy serves as a professional spiritual leadership coach with Blackaby Ministries, a Doctor of Ministry field mentor and adjunct faculty for various seminaries, including Gateway (formerly Golden Gate), New Orleans and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminaries. He also serves on the faculty for the fully on-line Rockbridge Seminary.
Randy has served in some form of ministry for over 40 years in church roles from founding pastor to bus pastor and everything in between. He has also worked with LifeWay Christian Resources and was on faculty with New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary for eleven years before beginning his ministry at the BCM/D.
In 2012, Randy published his first book, “To Love and To Cherish from This Day Forward: A Portrait of a Healthy Church,” and a related Church Health assessment instrument, “A Portrait of a Healthy Church.” In addition, he has contributed articles to several magazines and journals, hosts a blog site (www.simplymillwood.com), and has written and presented several academic papers.
Randy and his wife, Adele, were high school sweethearts. They have two sons, seven grandchildren, and a beloved Corgi named Elly May.
He is available to meet with pastors and church leaders to discuss areas regarding church strengthening.
Director of Baptist Student Ministry University of Maryland, College Park
Jessica Senasack serves as collegiate minister at the University of Maryland/College Park.
Jessica explained that through Baptist Collegiate Ministries, students become part of a community of college students who seek Jesus through worship, discipleship, evangelism, service, and mission.
“I love college ministry because college is the time when students first get to make their faith their own. Their family is no longer there to take them to church, so they have to decide if following Jesus is really what they want to do. It is awesome to watch them figure this out and then see them find their role in the Kingdom. One of the main goals of our ministry is to help college students discover their gifts and passions so that when they graduate they already know how God wants to use them for His glory.”
Jessica grew up in Baldwin, Md., and attended Long Green Baptist Church. She attended college at the University of Maryland where she studied math and was actively involved in campus ministry. Upon graduating she became a semester missionary through the North American Mission Board (NAMB) working with Baptist Campus Ministries at Anne Arundel Community College, where she later continued serving for four years. She was then offered the position as Baptist Collegiate Minister at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she has been since June 2007.
Jessica has been married to her husband, Andy, since July 2007. He works as an auto mechanic. “We spend a lot of our time hanging out with college students and fixing cars for people, but when we do have free time we enjoy going out for a good meal, relaxing while watching TV, hanging out with friends, and playing with our two crazy black labs.”
Bulletin Blurb: Jessica Senasack serves as Baptist Collegiate Minister at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she has served since 2007. She previously served as semester missionary through the North American Mission Board (NAMB) working with Baptist Campus Ministries at Anne Arundel Community College, where she later continued serving for four years.
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Dr. Kevin Smith leads the staff of the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware. He has experience as a pastor, chaplain, church planter, conference speaker, and short-term missionary. He has studied at Hampton University, the Church of God Theological Seminary, and The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, subsequently serving on Southern’s faculty for over a decade. In 2015, while serving the Highview Baptist Church in Louisville (KY), he was elected president of the Kentucky Baptist Convention. Kevin and his wife, Patricia, have three adult children and two great-nephews. His hobbies include whatever sports his kids were playing and riding his Harley-Davidson motorcycle. His ministry is animated by Jesus’ prayer for the unity of His followers in John 17.
Associate Executive Director
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Tom serves as the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware’s associate executive director, through whom all staff is accountable to the executive director. A licensed CPA in the state of Maryland, Tom directs, supervises, and coordinates the finance, accounting, and budgeting operations of the BCM/D. He also serves the staff as human resource director and manages corporate insurance coverage. Tom leads the Baptist Foundation of Maryland/Delaware as director, also serving as treasurer, managing its church loan program.
He has a passion for the church and routinely provides various types of training to local churches about ministers’ taxes, budgeting, establishing effective internal financial controls, and financial stewardship.
Tom and his wife, Shelley, have been married for over 25 years and have three sons, JT, Jake, and Jimmy, a child with autism. This journey has sparked a passion within Tom to assist our churches in the area of effective special needs ministry.
In his spare time, Tom enjoys sports, especially pro and college football. He loves his beloved Minnesota Vikings and Maryland Terrapins and enjoys a few fall Saturday afternoons enjoying Terrapin football games as a season ticket holder. He also enjoys participating in events that raise awareness for special needs causes such as walks for autism. And every once in a while, he will fire up his Xbox and take a little time to himself to play a video game!
Tom is available to consult with pastors and church leaders regarding finances, investing, and stewardship.
Church Services Consultant, Community Engagement Consultant
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Ellen Udovich serves as a consultant for Community Engagement, helping to exponentially amplify the impact of evangelism ministries in Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware churches through evangelism training, disaster preparedness, coaching and support. She enjoys teaching Christians to be “on mission” in their daily lives, living by example, and using everyday opportunities to show the love of to those around them.
Prior to ministering with the BCM/D, Ellen served with the Baltimore Baptist Association as director of church and community ministries, supervising the Baltimore Baptist Port ministry; summer sports evangelism clinics, and Canton Baptist Center. She also recruited and oversaw mission teams and volunteers serving in Baltimore.
She was born on Maryland’s lower Eastern Shore but she and her husband, Charlie, have lived in Baltimore for over 30 years where they enjoy exploring the city. Ellen also enjoys urban gardening and has helped others start gardens in the city.
Ellen, who holds a Master of Divinity degree and a Master of Social Work degree from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, is available to meet with pastors and church leaders to discuss ways to help your church be “on mission,” and to develop and/or improve your evangelism strategies.
Collegiate Ministry Consultant; Director of Baptist Student Ministry, University of Delaware
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Nathaniel Walters serves as Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware (BCM/D) Collegiate Ministry Consultant, and as the director of Baptist Student Ministry at the University of Delaware.
As the BCM/D Collegiate Ministry Consultant, Walters assists campus ministers throughout Maryland and Delaware, and he helps start and strengthen other collegiate ministries in the region. He also partners with campus ministers on a regional and national level as they encourage one another, seeking to minister to the ever-changing demographic of college students in America.
Serving as the director of Baptist Student Ministry at the University of Delaware, Walters meets with and oversees the student leadership team, teaches Tuesday night large group, manages the ministry house and residents on campus, disciples students, plans and coordinates retreats and events, and plots the vision for BSM in the future.
“College is a turning point for many people, for better or for worse, and I’m excited to have an influence on the lives of students both at Delaware and throughout the state. “
Finance Office Coordinator
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Iris joined the convention in August 2001. Prior to that time she was an assistant project manager for a real estate developer in Baltimore City who specialized in community development, mixed-use and specialty projects, as well as shopping centers and retail stores.
Originally from North Little Rock, Ark., she taught elementary school in Arkansas and fourth grade at St. Martin’s Lutheran School in Annapolis, Md., before moving to Canada. Upon returning to Maryland, she ran a desktop publishing business out of her home for ten years providing services to several large corporations.
She married her high school sweetheart, Ken, who after 35 years left his professional career as a CFO and turn-around specialist to attend The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary where he received a M.Div. in Theology. He is currently pastoring Boulevard Christian Church in Essex. The Whites have three grown children, Kenny, Lisa, and Laura, and twelve grandchildren (including four adopted grandchildren from Colombia, South America).
In her spare time, Iris enjoys being a pastor’s wife and serving the Essex community and being with her family.