Celebration Church Tri-Cities Team
Celebration Church Tri-Cities is blessed to have a team of laborers who are truly dedicated to Christ and accomplishing His will. This is who they are and how to reach them.
Robert F. Russell, PhD
Robert Russell serves as the Lead Pastor of Celebration Church. He has been a part of Celebration for 20 years. Robert previously served as a full-time professor at Emory & Henry College and adjunct professor at King College. Years ago Robert also worked in the Financial Division of Eastman Chemical Company in Kingsport.
Robert’s academic background includes earning a BA from Emory & Henry College, MBA from The Darden School at the University of Virginia, MA and MDiv from Luther Rice Seminary, and PhD from Regent University. He was also a CPA and CMA.
Robert is married to Michelle Anne Russell, who leads the Worship Arts Ministry at Celebration Church. They have three children: David, Abbie, and Jonathan who is married to Michelle Ruth Russell. He enjoys running, cycling, snow skiing, and all types of fishing.
Bruce and his wife, Lenora, have been married since 1988. They have two beautiful daughters, Morgan and Jamie. Bruce truly believes that God brought his family to Celebration Church and into this position of ministry. He received his bachelor's degree in Organizational Management from Tusculum College in 2001.
Bruce's prayer is that God will continue to lead and empower this body of Christ as we strive to utilize our time, talents, and financial resources in a way that honors God and enriches our walk with Jesus Christ. He enjoys bicycling, camping, and just generally playing with his family and friends
Administrative Assistant & Facility Scheduler
Susan grew up in Henderson, NC and has been married to her husband, Brad, since 1984. They moved to Kingsport over 20 years ago to work in ministry. She began working at Celebration Church in the main office as an Administrative Assistant in 2006 and has recently added the responsibilities as facilities scheduler. She enjoys communicating and connecting people so that visions and plans can come together. Her desire is to be used by God in ways that will show others the love He has for them. This will bring them into true worship with Him!
Susan loves spending time with her hubby, sunflowers and butterflies, and making people smile!! She believes God is who He says He is, Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life and the Holy Spirit is the true Comforter!! What else can a girl ask for!!
Sheila Sproles has spent most of her life in Christian ministry. As a musician and speaker, she has been involved in women's ministry for many years, and has also led mission trips to Kenya and South Africa. Sheila recently retired from a full-time corporate job and now has the opportunity to devote time to working in the office at Celebration. Sheila is married to Steve, and has three grown children and seven grandchildren. Her life verse is James 1:25, "But whosoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it - not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it - they will be blessed in what they do."
Melinda is a life-long resident of Kingsport, who has attended Celebration for nearly 20 years. She has served for many years on the women's ministry team and on the Board of Delegates as the women's ministry team representative. Melinda recently retired from a forty-year career in the insurance industry, before beginning her second career as a part-time administrative assistant in the church office. Her "go-to" verse is Philippians 4:6-7, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hears and your minds in Christ Jesus." She feels this verse can speak to many situations in life, and never fails to provide the comfort it promises
Children's Ministry Director
Sandy is the Children’s Ministry Director at Celebration Church. She is married to her high school sweetheart, Teddy, and has two grown sons, Wade and Camen, in addition to two dogs, Copper and Toby. Sandy has a Bachelors degree in Social Work from the University of Tennessee and has worked with kids for over 20 years. She loves Jesus, her family, kids, and dogs!
Children & Youth Events Coordinator
Maggie has attended Celebration Church for the past fifteen years. She graduated from Liberty University in 2018 with a degree in Adventure Leadership and Outdoor Ministry, as well as a minor in Photography. Camp ministry is one of her passions, as she feels that camps are a place where students can encounter Jesus in an impactful, life-changing way. Maggie enjoys photography, hiking, and dancing (she teaches in the Worship Arts Ministry at Celebration as well). Above all, she strives to serve her King, as He is all she needs.
Providing and maintaining user friendly facilities to enhance the purposes of Celebration ministry, Tim and his gang keep everything around Celebration clean and working smoothly.
Young Adult & Youth Pastor
Jonathan Meo and his wife, Taylor, are the blessed parents of two boys, Jadon and Bohdan. Jonathan is a graduate of both King College and Regent University. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Bible and Religion, as well as a Masters in Divinity. He has led worship, playing both piano and guitar, since his teenage years in New York. Jonathan loves to teach and preach the truth of the gospel to our generation. Having started as an intern in our Children's Ministry, Jonathan has spent the last 10 years at Celebration, working with students from elementary thru college. He currently oversees both our Youth Ministry and Incurrent services.
Youth Ministries Coordinator
Taylor is the administrative assistant for Incurrent and Celebration Youth Ministry. Married to Jon Meo and Mama to their sweet boys, Jadon and Bohdan. She has worked alongside her husband in ministry for 14 years and is also a photographer and graphic designer.
Community Groups Coordinator
Small groups are extremely important in a large church, and Sandy does a great job of getting people together for study, service or fun. Sandy and Dave were married in 1977 and completed Bible college together. Dave is presently involved in prison ministry and Sandy in facilitating the interaction of small groups. Sandy has worked in this area for thirteen years. Her heart is to help people connect for spiritual transformation and authentic community. Her passion is to see small groups expand and multiply as a dynamic force for discipleship. Contact Sandy if you desire to be in a small group or to start a small group.
Men's Ministry Coordinator
Mark Mullins has lived in Kingsport with his wife, Melissa, for 32 years and they have attended Celebration Church for 10 years. Mark is a manager for Pavewell Paving and also works to provide affordable housing for those in need through Habitat for Humanity. Melissa works for Eastman Chemical Company and they have one daughter, Brianna, who recently graduated as a Doctor of Physical Therapy. She is soon to be married and lives in Chattanooga. His vision is for men to see the real need for developing a deep relationship with Jesus Christ and to recognize the importance of their role in family, church and society as God intended, not as how they are portrayed in today’s culture.
Middle School Pastor
Ken Thompson has been serving as the Middle School Director with Celebration Church over the past four years. Ken and his wife, Sarah, moved from the state of the mighty Florida Gators (chomp, chomp) five years ago with their seven children. He has a passion to show his family and the students of Celebration how Great God’s love is for them and how His GRACE is overflowing. Ken loves spending time with his family and when he is not serving at the church, you can usually find him coaching one or more of his children on the sports field or court.
Tammy loves serving as the Nursery Coordinator for Celebration Church! She couldn't do it without her personable hubby, Tony, and the three fantastic day coordinators: Hannah Voudrie on Wednesdays, Stacia Moody on Saturdays, and Helen Sharp on Sundays!
Besides being married to Tony since 1985, Tammy is the blessed mom of their four sons: Micah, Zachary, Seth, and Noah. The most precious relationship in her life, however, is the one she has had with Jesus Christ since 1970.
Tammy has been a home educator since 1993, which includes teaching writing classes to many homeschooled students over the years. While a former student of ETSU and Appalachian Bible College, Tammy's greatest education has been being a mom and life itself. She also enjoys: moderating several communication networks, writing a future novel and occasional articles, gardening, canning and freezing food for her family, cooking/baking, reading, working out at the YMCA, walking, hiking, and snow skiing. Her greatest desire is to obey God and to "love the Lord with all her heart, soul, mind, and strength . . . and her neighbor as herself."
Real Life Minister
Della's hope is for all to have a relationship with Christ and to be continually growing in that relationship. Della serves as the Real Life Minister and as a member of the Leadership team. She is a graduate of ETSU, and Emmanuel Christian Seminary (M. Div and D. Min). Della, Ken and Brandon became a family in 1986 when she and Ken were married and are blessed with Kate who became a part of the family in 2019 when she and Brandon married. Della's past times are physical activity, things that are challenging, cooking, learning, reading, creating, and writing.
Real Life Ministries Coordinator
Ginger serves as the Real Life Ministries coordinator. She is the staff connection for leaders within Real Life and the leader of Celebration Friends and Whole Life Healing. She has served in ministry since 2006 when she began teaching in Worship Arts. She retired her dance shoes in 2012 and began working in Celebrating Freedom which was the recovery ministry at Celebration. She transitioned into Real Life in the 2017 and feels blessed to be part of a growing ministry. She loves watching God work and reveal himself in His wondrous ways.
Ginger is a licensed behavior therapist and has spent many years working with families and children in the Tri-Cities. She is married to Mark and they stay very busy raising their 2 daughters, Ruby and Olive. She loves to exercise, spent time outdoors, read (when she can stay awake), and just enjoy the presence of family and friends.
Family Ministry Consultant
Hettie is married to Celebration's Worship Pastor, Louis Brittz. They have three children: a teen, a college student, and a newlywed. Hettie is a contracted Family Ministry Consultant. She presents parenting and marriage counseling workshops and training, and believes all relationships can become life-giving!
Single Adult Ministry & Church-Wide Event Coordinator
Phyllis is the coordinator for Large Events and Singles Ministries at Celebration Church. She has a heart for service and strives to do her utmost to bring the finest events that are exceptionally fun but also inspirational for those who attend.
Phyllis felt spiritually drawn to Celebration one day while she was driving by the church. She began attending Celebration and then Divorce Recovery in 2004. Phyllis met her husband while serving, side by side, as part of the Singles Leadership team. They married in November 2007 and she continues to co-lead the Celebration Singles group along with her husband, Gary. They also co-facilitate the Divorce Recovery Group. Phyllis is a vital part of Celebration and has a heart of love and empathy for Single Adults of all ages. Phyllis has two sons, two beautiful daughter-in-laws and four adorable grandchildren.
Rylan has attended Celebration for as long as he can remember. He has always loved the Tech booth and over the last few years has truly felt called to serve at Celebration. He worked on the Tech Team for several years beginning with lyrics and as of March, 2018, he came on staff as the Technical Director. He is attending North East State for a Degree in Entertainment Technologies with a focus on Audio Engineering and hopes to be used in a way that lets people see and hear the gospel as best as possible.
Leigh serves as Women's Minister to Celebration Church. Leigh has a passion for ministry and a gift for helping individuals find a place of belonging and service, both in the community and in the church. She loves to see people have fun and experience the true hope that only comes from Jesus Christ. God's Word is the authority and His Spirit is the teacher as Leigh leads women on a delightful journey of seeking, finding, and growing in Christ.
In her spare time, she enjoys spending time at the local YMCA in Group Ex Classes and spending quality time with her family & friends, traveling and seeing new sites. Leigh is married to Jamie and is the "Uber Driver" and mommy to two very active kids, Aubrey and Greyson.
Louis hails from Pretoria, South Africa and has been a happy Tennessean since December, 2017. He left a career in the law to pursue God's calling to music ministry in 1994, when he started writing, recording, producing, and performing worship music full-time. On a ministry tour to the USA in 2004, he discovered the Celebration Church community and felt right at home. Many years and several visits later, he joined the CCTRI team of musicians full time as our worship pastor. He is married to Hettie and is father to Idalise, Pero, and Simone'. They love exploring God's purposes for the Tri-Cities.
Worship Arts Minister
Michelle is our Worship Arts Minister, married to Celebration's Lead Pastor, Robert Russell, and they have 3 children. When the Dance/Worship Arts Ministry began in 2003, Michelle was excited to get her feet tapping again for Jesus. She has taught dance for over 20 years and continues to learn joyful ways to express her gratitude to the Lord for all that He has done for her.
Worship Arts provides her with constant joy and challenges as she serves in this incredible ministry and witnesses the Holy Spirit transform our staff, students and their families.
Michelle says most important thing about her is that Jesus is the love of her life. She feels close to Him when she plays her flute in worship and when she dances. She has a longing to teach others the joy of worshiping Him in Spirit and in truth. Music, dance, art and drama are very important in her life for communicating with God, displaying His creativity, sharing Jesus with others, expressing joy & pain, fighting spiritual battles, serving others, connecting with other believers and staying physically strong. Michelle also works as a Music Therapist, working with Alzheimer’s patients in an assisted living center. She loves being able to share her love of music, dance, and Jesus with people all ages and watching as God transforms people.