Fellowship of Evangelical Churches
1420 Kerrway Ct.
Fort Wayne, IN 46805
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone – (260) 423-3649
Fax – (260) 420-1905
FEC Office Staff
Rocky Rocholl – President
Scott Wagoner – National Church Planting
Tom Bennardo – Pastoral Development & Western U.S. Church Multiplication
Jay Nickless – Church Planting Field Coordinator
Hal Lehman – International Church Planting
Nate Zimmerman – Administrative Director
Sloane Paris – Executive Assistant
Lauren Voss – Administrative Assistant
National Church Planting Director
Pastoral Development & Western U.S. Church Multiplication
Tom Bennardo is a native of Brooklyn, New York who has lived on both coasts and various places in-between. In 35 years of ministry he has served as a staff pastor, youth pastor, church planter, and senior pastor. Tom holds a B.A. and M.Div. from Grace College & Theological Seminary in Winona Lake, Indiana, and a Doctorate in Church Leadership and Ecclesiology from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois. After 21+ years as founder and lead pastor of Life Community Church, an FEC church in Hilliard, Ohio, Tom joined the staff of FEC in 2017 as Director of Pastoral Development & Western U.S. Church Multiplication. Now residing on the west coast, his role is multi-faceted: expanding FEC’s presence west of the Rocky Mountains, providing pastoral support, and equipping young leaders in their theological development. Tom and his wife Marcia have been married 32 years, and have two daughters.
Church Planting Field Coordinator
Jay and Shelly Nickless have served Pine Hills Church since January 2015 leading the Multiplication Initiative. During his ministry Jay has coached, mentored and equipped several individuals by assisting them in planting new churches. PHC has seen LifeGate (Denver), Pine Hills Kendallville, Pine Hills The City, The Well (Indianapolis), Graceway Church (Auburn) either launched or in the preparation phase during the past three years. Jay has transitioned to the Fellowship of Evangelical Churches (FEC) ministry staff as of April 3rd and joined their Church Planting Team as the Church Planting Field Coordinator. “Church planting is the most effective way to reach people for the Gospel, and evangelism is the primary reason I am involved in church-planting,” Jay shares. Jay will continue to give leadership and oversight to Pine Hills Church Multiplication Initiative with about 15-20 hours per week. Pine Hills Church is thrilled to share Jay’s church planting leadership skills and abilities with the FEC Resource Center.
International Church Planting Director
Hal Lehman, a farm boy from Berne IN, has lived his life investing in international ministry through various avenues. Hal and his wife Suzie, married 33 years with three grown children & one granddaughter, both came to Christ through local FEC churches (Hal in Berne, IN and Suzie in Archbold, OH). Their family served several years with FEC in the Dominican Republic providing Leadership Training and Child Education Development as well as in Indonesia as a pilot/mechanic family with Mission Aviation Fellowship. Hal joined the FEC home office team in 2002 and in 2011 became FEC’s International Multiplication Director while also directing FEC’s Basque Initiative. He consistently seeks new cross-cultural opportunities that God may open for FEC, and desires to resource local FEC churches seeking international involvement. “I am extremely encouraged by FEC’s unwavering desire to multiply churches throughout the world as well as the many local FEC churches seeking to expand their cross-cultural impact.”
E. Nathan Zimmerman
Nate Zimmerman, born and raised within FEC at Brookside Church, joined the FEC team in 2015 as the Administrative Director. As a Taylor University graduate, Nate entered the family financial business and began to learn the trade. “I enjoyed working with my family, certain aspects of the business, and understood the concepts; but I did not enjoy sales,” Nate shares, “As I value family and loyalty, I stayed engaged. If I could say it this way, FEC is an answer to a prayer I didn’t pray. My dad gave me his blessing to pursue this position—otherwise, I would not have considered it out of loyalty to him.” Nate handles the financials of FEC and acts as back office support to missionaries and planters, handles social media and marketing, as well as web development and leadership programs. “I seek to be the glue of the office—to notice the gaps and fill them in,” Nate says, “I’m thrilled to go to work, and be a small part of what God is doing through our churches; I’m thriving in a way I was not before joining FEC.” Nate is passionate about his family, his church, his work, and his team. God provided in all the ways Nate needed, and then some. He looks forward to the exciting new ventures facing FEC and how God will continue to use him in the years ahead.
“God answered a prayer I didn’t even pray.” Sloane Paris was raised within FEC at Brookside Church. She attended Purdue University, and majored in Hospitality and Tourism Management. Her focus quickly shifted to climbing the corporate ladder and after graduation, Sloane landed her dream job working for a prestigious golf club in Washington D.C. “I had everything I wanted at my fingertips, and I loved it.” Sloane eventually learned, however, that what had seemed like her dream swiftly became a never-ending pursuit of contentment. “I knew I needed to get out of there because I was becoming something I was not. When you have everything, you don’t have to rely on God for anything, and that’s a dangerous place to be.” Over time, God stirred Sloane’s heart to move back to Indiana to pursue a new direction. Through a course of events, Sloane became the Executive Assistant at the FEC Resource Center. “I remember growing up and all I wanted to do was work in a church; now I work for more than sixty church congregations. God knows the desire of our hearts even when we don’t know our own desires.” Sloane is now putting her gifts and talents to use working a job that she never saw in her future. “I’m the happiest and most content I’ve ever been in my professional life.” Sloane is an excellent addition to the team and looks forward to the future God has for her at FEC.
“FEC is exactly the type of organization I hoped to be a part of someday,” Lauren shares. She was raised in the small town of Auburn in the heart of northeast Indiana. Lauren attended Indiana Wesleyan University where she received her bachelor’s degree in Addictions Counseling. “I started off in pre-med, but one day, it really hit me that I wanted to deal more with issues of the heart.” Lauren has a deep desire to disciple youth for the sake of the Gospel and has been able to do this through the avenues of coaching high school basketball for her alma mater, Lakewood Park Christian School, as well as through serving in various youth groups. She is passionate about helping youth—especially young women—to develop their relationships with Christ and to deepen their knowledge of Him. “I was privileged with many people that spoke truth into my life as I was young, and I know that my character development was greatly impacted as a result. I want to be a part of that spiritual development in the next generation. One way I can do that is by serving the local church; working for FEC allows me to do that.” Lauren has attended Pine Hills Church for the last few years, and has grown to love FEC as a result. She considers herself greatly blessed to have joined the staff of FEC in January 2017 as Administrative Assistant. Lauren and her husband Tim were recently married in September of 2016 and reside in Fort Wayne.
Christian Service Foundation President
Christian Service Foundation
“God brought me to FEC at a time in my life when I needed it the most.” Linda Burton, a Fort Wayne native, considers herself to be both privileged and blessed to be a part of the FEC team. After many years at Raytheon followed by a short season at a local bank, Linda was extremely thankful to join the Christian Service Foundation (CSF) part-time, an affiliate of the Fellowship of Evangelical Churches. Linda’s background in accounting greatly aided her as she transitioned into her new role at CSF in handling various accounts. “I feel that I am able to use my analytical nature in this position, and it fits me well,” Linda shares. When Linda needed to move into full-time work, FEC had an opening, and Linda was able to fill in the gap, working part-time for CSF and part-time for FEC. “God orchestrated the perfect scenario at just the right time. In a season when I needed “family” and an encouraging atmosphere, God provided abundantly through an organization I already loved.” Linda lends accounting assistance to Nate Zimmerman, the Administrative Director, in a variety of accounting responsibilities and some special projects. “I love that my position with FEC provides a variety of tasks and also has given me the opportunity to serve God alongside people that I consider to be like family.” Linda has attended Pine Hills Church for four years, and greatly enjoys time with her two daughters, Alex and Sarafina.