John and Kristin Ragsdale have been married and in ministry together since 1993. They have two wonderful sons, Evan and Davis. After being on pastoral staff in Austin, TX, for 9 years, they moved to Nashville to launch John Ragsdale Ministries – an international itinerant ministry.
In 2010, they felt God leading them to plant a church. After much prayer, extensive research, and many confirmations, it became obvious that God was leading them to plant in Nashville. On May 18, 2010, they met in their home with a few friends and family to explore this new endeavor; and out of this gathering, The Hills Nashville began. The Hills officially launched January 22, 2012.
Connect with them: @johnrags / @kristinragsdale.
Ron Smith has been married to Michelle for almost 30 years. Together they have 3 incredible children, Chase, Cole and Carley. Ron is a sales and marketing consultant and business owner who assists companies develop marketing plans and raise funding. His clients include, or have included, Veggie Tales, Simon & Schuster, Bristol Development and others. His Publishing company has published more than 500 titles since 1999 and his management company manages world class magician Justin Flom and The Hills own, CAIN.
For years Pastors John and Kristin have planned with Ron and Michelle how they could work together and in mid 2019 they found a way. Ron joined the staff as a consultant to oversee Development and Strategic Planning. He has headed up the Legacy Campaign fundraising initiative and oversees several areas of development. In addition Ron and Michelle lead Small Groups
To reach Ron, e-mail email@example.com.
Casey is a single foster + adoptive mom, who has dedicated her life to the local church. She has worked in ministry in some aspect since the age of 15, which is when she truly fell in love with Jesus + his people. She was part of launching The Hills in 2012 as a recent college graduate and has served in leadership in nearly every area of our church. After years of church planting + working at a family of start up companies in sports + entertainment, she made the switch to full time ministry in 2015.
In 2016, she became a foster mom to McKenzi and adopted her in 2019. She continues to foster, having more than 18 children in her home over the course of four years.
She currently oversees our Executive Administration + Outreach, and is in the process of launching a nonprofit to serve children + families involved in foster care.
To contact Casey, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jared Johnson serves as The Hills' Gatherings Pastor. He oversees the various Hills Teams that make The Hills' Sunday Gatherings Spirit-filled and life-giving experiences. Jared also oversees Hills Groups, and he has a passion for helping others find enriching community. Along with his wife Madison, Jared became part of The Hills family in May of 2017 and was ordained into ministry in August of 2018. This year, after hearing a call from God, Jared left his career as a mechanical engineer and joined The Hills' pastoral staff.
To contact Jared, email email@example.com.
Camila serves as the Executive Administrator + Director of Hills Teams. Camila previously worked as a project manager in supply chain management and while serving the community at her former company, she felt a call to invest in Kingdom work. She loves her home country of Colombia and also loves international travel.
To contact Camila, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jordan Hicks serves as the Next Generation Pastor at The Hills. He and his wife Jennifer became members of The Hills in 2013 and immediately started serving as a part of the Hills Kids team. Jordan became the leader of our children's ministry in 2016, then God moved on him to leave his career as a physical therapist and focus on full time ministry. He completed ministry training with Destiny Leadership Institute, and joined the staff as the Next Generation Pastor in July of 2019. He also oversees our Growth Track.
Jordan and Jennifer have one daughter, Lucy and another child due in August 2020.
Zoë Morris moved to Nashville in 2014 to study Vocal Performance at Belmont University and to begin her career in Christian Music. She began leading worship at her home church in Connecticut when she was 15, and began writing music around the same time.
Leading worship at camps, retreats, worship nights, and a handful of churches in the Nashville and Connecticut areas over the years, she found her home at The Hills in September 2019. She currently serves as our Worship Coordinator and believes that, no matter what, He is always worthy of our praise and adoration.
Justin Herrera Serves as our New Venue Construction Liaison. With more than 10 years of construction management experience in both commercial and residential construction, he has been a great asset to our New Venue purchase and construction process.
Justin was born and raised in Southern CA, where he graduated from The University of California, Irvine. Upon graduation, he worked for his father’s general contracting firm where he served as an Operations Manager. In 2017, Justin moved to Nashville for work + followed God’s lead to plant roots here instead of returning to California as he had originally planned. He began attending The Hills and volunteering in many areas with a focus on the new venue. He also recommitted his life to the Lord in July 2018 and was baptized again. Justin also serves as part of our High School Hills Youth team + on the Video Production team.
To contact Justin, email email@example.com.
Austin Peckham serves as the Media Director. He has extensive experience as a music video director as well as managing social media for Fortune 500 companies. He and his wife Emily, along with their two goldendoodles, Rhett and Morris reside in Franklin.
Zach serves as our Graphics + Live Stream Director. He has served in various roles in the Church from Youth Pastor, Worship Pastor, Creative Director and Campus Pastor.
Zach also spent some time working for the Outdoor Channel producing & directing various TV Shows.
Zach is passionate about bringing the art of storytelling into every environment. He is married to his high-school sweetheart, Claire, and together they have 6 children.
Derrick and Kesha have been married for 18 years and celebrate their wedding anniversary on Christmas Day. They have three beautiful children Emerick, Aliyah and Yasmin.
After residing as native Memphians their entire lives, Derrick and Kesha realized God had a plan for them elsewhere. With a combined total of over 35 years’ experience in Human Resources, they relocated to Franklin, TN in 2015 to focus on their careers. Derrick holds a Master’s Degree in Leadership and Kesha a Master’s Degree in Human Resources. A few months later, they were led to The Hills Nashville and have been planted ever since.
Derrick and Kesha currently serve as leaders of the Prayer Ministry Team. They also serve on the Hosting and Next Steps Team as well. Derrick and Kesha have a passion for serving in the House of God, while mentoring married and engaged couples through their semester Group meetings.
When they are not ministering and serving others, they love to travel back to their hometown of Memphis and spending time sightseeing.
Derrick and Kesha are devoted believers of 1 Peter 4:10, in which our Heavenly Father calls on His children to serve with purpose and stewardship for His Kingdom.
Sam Chappell serves on our oversight board.
With extensive experience during his thirty year career, Sam has advised numerous companies and Christian ministries on their M&A and business development activities in media and entertainment. He currently serves as an advisor for a private equity fund focused on the acquisition of music rights. Sam also operates Chappell Entertainment, a management company focused on nurturing established and unknown talent in music and print media.
Sam also served on the Board of Trustees at Mid America Bible College and on the Board of Directors for Liberty Christian School.
Sam’s great passions revolve around helping others find their destiny. He believes that our destiny creates our legacy, and he is determined to help everyone he encounters build their vision for themselves and their families.
Pastor Phil Brassfield serves on our Oversight board and serves as a pastor to our pastors.
For more than twenty five years, Phil and Cathy Brassfield have served the Lord in various ministry capacities. Phil was called by God at a young age to develop Leaders. And he has been, for many years, a trailblazer and designer of innovative and nontraditional ministry and educational concepts. He has served in almost every position imaginable in the local church, including Senior Pastor, and in a variety of executive positions with three different non-traditional Christian Colleges whose primary focus was equipping leaders in partnership with the local church. As the Lord continued to develop him as a Leader, He eventually brought into clear focus Phil’s life, vision and mission. That vision would prove to be Destiny Ministries.
As a seminar and conference speaker, Phil addresses relevant issues confronting leaders in both the religious and secular arenas. His message of grace, hope, and love, coupled with keen insight into life’s fundamental issues, has offered a light of God’s direction to many on their journey through life.
Dr. Mike Hayes serves on our Oversight Board.
Dr. Mike Hayes is a reconciler. His life and ministry is characterized by connecting people in life-giving relationship with God and each other. He is a uniter – catalyzing racial reconciliation and healing for more than 40 years. As the Founding Pastor of Covenant Church, he pioneered a ministry that exemplifies covenant relationships. Flourishing in diversity, with more than 100 nations represented, Covenant Church has become a leading voice for unity and a model for transcultural, multigenerational, and multiethnic ministry.
Dr. Mike Hayes currently serves as President of Churches In Covenant, a global network of churches and ministries united to bless the nations. In January of 2017, Dr. Hayes launched a new initiative focused on bringing hope and restoration to our nation. The Center for National Renewal, in Washington D.C., is a Christian, interdenominational, non-partisan organization who seeks to catalyze ideas and influencers for the work of national renewal. As a hub of intercession, education, reconciliation and influence, the Center for National Renewal serves to collaborate with local and national leaders to heal the deep divide in our land.
Dr. Mike Hayes along with his wife, Kathy, has embarked on a new journey. Leveraging decades of ministry and a wealth of influence, to see an unprecedented time of refreshing and renewal sweep across our nation and the world.
Tom Lowe is the senior pastor of Christ Church, a vibrant, diverse body of believers committed to serving people, developing leaders and impacting succeeding generations.