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Our Leadership
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Dr. Jeff Elliot, Senior Pastor

Although Jeff grew up in a Christian home near Chicago, he was an atheist until his senior year of high school. He became convinced of the reality of God, but was still not converted to Christianity. During his sophomore year at Wake Forest, God showed Jeff his inability to fix himself and gave him realization of the hope to be found in Jesus Christ as his Savior and Lord. He received an M.Div at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia. He and his wife, Margaret, moved to northern Virginia where he served as an intern at McLean Presbyterian Church. After 19 years of serving at First Presbyterian and Pear Orchard Presbyterian in Jackson, Mississippi, Jeff arrived at New Covenant in 2009. (While in Jackson, he earned a D.Min at Reformed Theological Seminary.) Jeff is an avid sports fan and especially loves watching Chicago teams.

Rev. Tim Dryden, Associate Pastor

Tim and his wife, Deana, have 5 adult children, Mathias, Miriam, Micah, Wade, and Emma, and one grandchild. They landed in Virginia Beach in 2013, and love being here! Tim was a pharmaceutical sales rep for years, then met his wife through their work with a touring Christian ballet company. Deana was a professional ballerina for many years, and Tim worked as a youth pastor and assistant pastor for 12 years before moving to Tidewater. Tim earned his M.Div at Reformed Theological Seminary. The Drydens love the Lord, love people, and love to laugh.

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Bill Pon 2

Bill Pon, Facilities and Grounds Manager

Bill and his wife, Barb, met at New Covenant and have been attending for over 20 years. Bill has served as New Covenant's facilities manager since 2005, and Barb has been the church's secretary since 1997. Bill is an avid golfer and runner, singer and comedian. Bill and Barb enjoy being involved with New Covenant's Missions Team, Choir, Nursery, Men's & Women's ministries, and one of New Covenant's community groups.

Barb Pon, Church Administrator

Barb grew up on a small farm in Thief River Falls, MN. She graduated from Bemidji State University in 1976 with a secondary teaching degree in English / German. She moved to Virginia in 1988 after working as an administrative assistant with a security contractor at the Zion, IL nuclear plant. She was part of a para-church discipleship ministry for a few years before coming to New Covenant in 1992. She has served as the church secretary since 1997. One thing she always tells people who call to ask about the church is that God’s Word is faithfully preached here. For fun and relaxation Barb enjoys reading books by Janette Oke and working in her garden at home and at church. She also loves to lead a Saturday afternoon Bible study and to meet new people at church.

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Meet Our Elders

You can email our session here

Kevin Berlin

Jeff Brauch

Jeff and his wife and best friend, Becky, were married in 1987 and have 4 adult children and four grandchildren. They began attending New Covenant in 1994 when they moved to Virginia Beach from Wauwatosa, Wisconsin. Jeff is a professor at Regent University School of Law, and Becky serves as New Covenant's event coordinator and a full-time grandma. Jeff loves history, travel, and the Green Bay Packers - not necessarily in that order.

Eric DeGroff

Eric and his wife, Debbie, have been married for 30 years and have four children. They're both natives of Kansas City, Kansas. Eric is a law professor at Regent, and Debbie is a homemaker and also works at Christ Covenant Preschool during the school year. She took on the difficult but rewarding task of homeschooling their four children through high school. The DeGroffs have been attending NCPC for nine years, and Eric has served as an elder for four years. He enjoys spending time with his family and sports of all varieties -- watching and participating -- especially delighting in Kansas University beating up on other college basketball teams.

Bob Essmann

Bob and his wife, Cheryl, were brought to Virginia 30 years ago from St. Louis, Missouri as newlyweds while he served active duty in the Navy. Since then, they've raised four daughters, gained sons-in-law, and added grandchildren to the family. The Essmanns became members of New Covenant in 1991. When they are not busy spending time with family, cooking, or watching St. Louis Cardinals baseball, Cheryl is a preschool teacher and vision therapist, and Bob is a Navy civilian at the Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek.

Kurt Nelson

Kurt and his wife, Joanne, were married in 1989 and have three adopted children, all grown adults now. He is originally from Villa Park, IL near Chicago, and Joanne is from Meriden, CT. Kurt spent 24 years in the Navy as a submarine officer and engineering duty officer before retiring from the service in 2001. He continues to serve as a business development director at Q.E.D. Systems in Virginia Beach. He and Joanne have been attending New Covenant since 1998 and they enjoy learning more about the Lord, discipling others, spending time with their two grandchildren, and hosting one of the New Covenant community groups at our home.

Rich Papworth

Rich and his wife, Beth are both retired Navy. They have one grown son. Born in Las Vegas and graduating from Southern Cal, Rich earned a CPA following his years in the Navy, working as the business manager of Norfolk Christian School until his retirement. He and Beth have been heavily involved at NCPC since they first visited in 2013. He volunteers as a discipler at the Virginia Beach jail and serves in many roles at New Covenant.

Meet Our Deacons

You can email our diaconate here

Andrew Leech (Chairman)

Andrew Leech is a native of Virginia Beach and has three daughters. He began attending New Covenant in 1979. After graduating from Virginia Tech in 1986, he joined the U.S. Navy, skipped the job part, and just enjoyed the adventure. After retiring, Andrew spent 11 years in Pittsburgh working for the Naval Nuclear Laboratory and is presently working at the Lab’s field office in Norfolk Naval Shipyard. And, he likes to point out that he is not Mark, and is not married to Murlene.

Ian Cath

Ian and his wife, Peggy, have three sons and one beautiful granddaughter. The Navy brought them to Virginia Beach in 1985. Ian is a native Michigander who grew up in Northern Virginia, and Peggy is from Glen Burnie, MD. Ian works as a military contractor in modeling and simulation, and Peggy is a homemaker who also enjoys volunteer work. They have been attending and serving NCPC for about 25 years. They enjoy spending time with family and friends and especially love spending time with their granddaughter. They have loved all of their years in the New Covenant family.