Christar U.S. Director
Dr. R. Stephen Coffey
Steve began work with Christar in 1989. He and his wife, Beth, initially served among North African immigrants in France. In 2001, they returned to the U.S. for Steve to lead the Christar Church Planting Division. He became Director of Christar U.S. in 2011. Before serving with Christar, Steve and Beth worked for a year in a humanitarian project in the Red Sea hills of Sudan among the Beja people. Steve’s education includes an undergraduate degree in history education from Liberty University, a Master of Divinity from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary (emphasis in cross-cultural ministry) and Doctor of Strategic Leadership from Regent University (emphasis in organizational leadership).
Christar U.S. Board of Trustees
Dr. Jeff Adams, Chairman
Jeff is senior pastor of Graceway in Kansas City, a multicultural, multiethnic, multilingual, multi-generational fellowship, one of the most diverse in America. Other fellowships have been planted in the Kansas City metropolitan area during his more than 30-year tenure, with a combined attendance of over 6,000 people. During this time over 80 cross-cultural workers have been sent nationally and internationally.
Previously, Jeff was a senior pastor in San Salvador, El Salvador. He saw the fellowship grow from 400 to over 1,200 with related works and ministries reaching another 3,000 weekly during the nation’s civil war. He assisted in establishing the first international Salvadoran sending mission agency in 1983. Jeff also served previously in Costa Rica and Nicaragua. He holds a Master of Sacred Literature and a Ph.D. from Trinity Theological Seminary.
Jeff was voted chairman of the U.S. Board at the September 2009 board meeting. He is also on the Christar International Board as well as serving on additional advisory boards, and does consulting work with other agencies.
Mr. Mike Busch
Upon graduating from Texas A&M University with a degree in accounting, Mike continued his education by earning marks as a CPA and a Certified Financial Planner. Mike is the owner of Vogel Financial Advisors, an independent registered investment advisory firm that holds the distinction of being designated “best” in both of D Magazine’s financial categories: Top Wealth Managers and Best Financial Planners. He is past chairman of the Dallas/Fort Worth Financial Planning Association and has also served at the national level as a member of the Financial Planning Association’s Board of Directors.
Mr. Keith Carlson
Keith serves as general counsel for Christar, and his been on the Board since 1984. He has extensive experience in international legal work and general corporate law. Keith received his bachelor’s and law degrees from the University of Michigan.
Rev. Brian Gross
Brian has been in vocational youth ministry for over 20 years, first in the Northeast and now in Texas. Brian earned a Master of Theology from Dallas Theological Seminary, where he found and cultivated his love for historical theology.
Mr. Will Heath
Will’s ministry and professional experiences have afforded him front-row access to succession plans at various stages of development and implementation in churches, parachurch ministries, nonprofits and businesses. Will now leads Auxano’s initiative to help ministries understand how to effectively navigate seasons of leadership transition. He began serving on the Board of Trustees for Christar in 2014.
Mr. Carl Jaedicke
Carl is a fundraising consultant for nonprofit organizations and institutions of higher learning and also helps individuals and organizations design and implement giving programs that meet their philanthropic objectives. Prior to consulting, Carl was employed for 32 years by the Texas A&M Foundation. He served as chief development officer for the College of Engineering, vice president for college programs and vice president for principal gifts. Before entering the development field, he held positions in engineering and finance in the electric power industry.
Carl holds an engineering degree from Texas A&M and an MBA from Indiana University. He has served on the Board of Trustees since 2012.
Mrs. Elizabeth Jones
Elizabeth and her husband lived in a Muslim country and served with Christar for 12 years, loving and sharing the gospel with their neighbors. They then relocated to Dallas. In 2017, Elizabeth left an 11-year career at an architectural firm. She now volunteers with local refugees and enjoys encouraging the women the Lord brings into her life.
Elizabeth participated on the Christar Women’s Advisory Council for six years and then began serving on Christar’s Board of Trustees in 2018. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in biology from Cornell University and a Certificate of Graduate Studies from Dallas Theological Seminary.
Mr. Eric M’Barine
Born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya, Eric is a radio frequency engineer by profession, with a career spanning 20 years in the telecommunication industry. He has also served on the board of charitable organizations in the U.S. as well as of telecommunications and energy startups in sub-Saharan Africa. Eric graduated from the University of North Texas in 1997 and received an Master of Science in Information Technology from the same school in 2001.
Dr. Marvin Newell
Marvin is Senior Vice President of Missio Nexus, a network of evangelical mission agencies, churches and training centers in North America with which Christar is affiliated. Previously he served as a missionary for 15 years in Indonesia, a mission administrator, a professor of missions at Moody Theological Seminary and a director of a missions association.
Marv is the author of several missions-related books, including the newest: Crossing Cultures in Scriptures: Biblical Principles for Missions Practice. He also serves on the Christar International Board.
Mrs. Ruth Nystrom
Ruth is part owner and office manager for Nystrom Business Sales. She holds a diploma in music composition from Moody Bible Institute. Ruth has been active in missions through the years by housing missionaries on furlough, providing respite for missionaries in need of restoration and rest and being involved with young women in a discipleship capacity.
Dr. Greg Parsons
Greg is the director of global connections of Frontier Ventures (formerly the U.S. Center for World Mission) in Pasadena, California, where he has served since 1982. Greg is Chancellor and Ralph D. Winter Associate Professor of Intercultural Studies as well as a member of the Board of William Carey International University. He also teaches in the Perspectives on the World Christian Movement course and serves on the board of Missio Nexus.
Greg graduated from San Jose State University in 1978 and from Dallas Theological Seminary in 1982, earning a Master of Theology in Christian education. He earned a Ph.D. from the University of Wales on the life and missiology of Ralph D. Winter. In addition to service on the Christar U.S. Board, Greg currently serves as chairman of the Christar International Board.
H. Eugene Williams III
Eugene Williams brings over 30 years of leadership, administration and operational experience, both in industry and cross-cultural ministry, to the board of directors. Currently, he is Global Director of Logistics for Accuray, Inc., a global manufacturer of radiation oncology capital equipment. Previously, he served internationally in a ministry leadership capacity with Trans World Radio in Latin American and Asia Pacific. He also has lived and worked in industry in Asia and Europe. Eugene holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Moody Bible Institute and a Master of Business Administration.
Dr. Samuel Barkat
Sam is the Executive Director of the Institute for Collaborative Engagement. In that capacity he works with national and international organizations and institutions. He has served as provost of Nyack College, NY and as vice president and Director of Multi-Ethnic Ministries of InterVarsity.
A native of Sialkot, Pakistan, Sam has taught Urdu in a language school in Pakistan and has trained cross-cultural workers. He is a graduate of Tennessee Temple College and received a Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Tennessee. He has been involved in higher education for 35 years including teaching psychology at King’s College. Sam is a licensed psychologist and also serves on the Christar International Board.
Mr. Scott Holbrook
Scott is the president/CEO of Avant Ministries. He is also employed as an adjunct professor at a local community college where he has taught for 32 years. He has been chairman of the CrossGlobal Link Business Administration Committee for 21 years, sits on the Board of Missio Nexus and also served as a member of the ECFA Standards Committee for six years. Scott is a Certified Public Accountant, has been a registered stockbroker and was formerly a licensed real estate agent. Scott received a Bachelor of Arts in economics in 1977 and an MBA in 1981 from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He also attended the University of Missouri at Kansas City, where he studied accounting.
Rev. Peter J. Hwang
Born in South Korea, Peter serves as the senior pastor of the First Korean Baptist Church of Philadelphia, which he founded in 1979. He has also served as an officer in various positions, including president, in the Council of Korean Southern Baptist Churches in America, a denomination of over 800 churches. In addition, he is president of the Friendship Council of U.S.A. and has served on the board of numerous organizations. Peter received his Master of Divinity from Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Dr. C. Gordon Olson
Gordon has been a friend of Christar for many years. He ministered in various capacities in Pakistan, including founding the Pakistan Fellowship of Evangelical Students, and was active as a preacher/teacher with the Pakistan Brethren Assemblies. After overseas service, Gordon worked for 23 years as a professor of missions, theology and Bible at Northeastern Bible College and for three years as academic dean. He has also pastored several churches in the northern New Jersey and Brooklyn areas.
Gordon has a Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering, and worked in the engineering field while attending Dallas Theological Seminary. He earned his Master of Theology from the seminary in 1955, and in 1988, earned a Master of Divinity from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. For 10 years, Gordon was a Bible answer man for a family radio station, WFME, in the New York area. His textbook, What in the World is God Doing? is the standard introduction to missions textbook on over 100 seminary and Bible college campuses.