Leadership

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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 children, Emma, Wade, Micah, Miriam, and Mathias - ranging from 15 to 27 years old. 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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Josh Escamilla, Worship and Youth Director

Josh grew up in Raleigh, NC and graduated from Lees-McRae college in western NC. He came to Virginia Beach in 2017 with the Coast Guard and was thankful to join New Covenant's church family. He leads the worship team and youth ministry, and is studying music at Virginia Wesleyan University. He is excited, thankful, and humbled for the opportunity to serve God and the church in new ways and to connect with the larger body of Christ through these ministries.

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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


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 and Joanne have been attending New Covenant for 19 years and they enjoy learning more about the Lord and hosting one of the New Covenant community groups, made up mostly of young families.


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.


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. Eric has served as an elder for four years, and they host one of the New Covenant community groups at their home. 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.


Blair Allen

Blair and his wife, Melinda, grew up in the PCA denomination, and greatly appreciate the doctrinal and theological teaching that they have enjoyed from an early age. They both graduated from Covenant College in 1990 and Blair received his master's degree in film studies from Regent University in 1992. Blair is a video producer currently working for NASA, and Melinda works as a Latin teacher at Veritas Collegiate Academy. They have three children, and have attended New Covenant since 2001. Lamentations 3:22-23


Jeff Brauch

Jeff and his wife and best friend, Becky, were married in 1987 and have 4 adult children and three 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.


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.


Kevin Berlin

More information to come.

Meet Our Deacons

You can email our diaconate here


Andrew Leech

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.

*Andrew is the chair of the Diaconate


Ken Westcott

Ken and his wife, Ann, are Ohio State graduates and have been married for 23 years. They both came to know the Lord as their Savior while at New Covenant, and have been attending for over 20 years. Ken is a Developmental Optometrist and has a thriving, Christ-centered practice in Chesapeake, where his wife Ann serves as the accountant and financial manager. Ken enjoys woodworking, and they both enjoy gardening and serving struggling learners and those with special needs. They have two children, Adam and Rebecca, and a cat named P-Dawg.


Ben Titter

Ben Titter grew up near Milwaukee, WI, and moved to Virginia Beach in 2008 to attend Regent University School of Law and the Robertson School of Government. He started attending New Covenant in 2009 and Jennifer, who grew up in the church and is now his wife, convinced Ben to stick around. He and Jennifer are also involved in the Nursery ministry and teaching Sunday School. During the week, Ben is an attorney with a local public housing agency.


Clay Johnson

Clay and his wife, Kate, started attending New Covenant shortly after they arrived in Virginia Beach in 2010. Clay serves in the Navy and has been blessed by not having to PCS for 4 tours in a row! Kate works digitally in the home and has served faithfully at NCPC in a number of roles. Both Clay and Kate are from Texas, and all three of their young kids claim Texas heritage as well despite being born in either Virginia or India. Clay's youngest child was internationally adopted from India, and his whole family has a passion for adoption of all kinds.


Tim Martin

Tim Martin and his wife, Mikala have been married since 1992, have three children and two grandchildren. Tim has been a Christian for more than 43 years. Both he and Mikala are U.S. Army veterans, their son-in-law Connor is an Air Force linguist and their son Jacob is an Army intelligence analyst. They have a special place in their hearts for the U.S. military and military families. Their eldest son, Aaron, died when he was 6 months old, and that has shaped their growth a great deal as well as greatly informed their ongoing testimony. Tim’s day-to-day job is as a network engineer for CBN. Tim says he struggles day to day with letting the Spirit lead him, rather than trying to direct the Spirit on where he wants to go but continues to grow with the help of God and his church family.


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.


Nathaniel Longjohn

Nathaniel was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA. He attended Grove City College and received his B.A. in Biblical and Religious Studies in 2018. He met his wife Deanna while studying at GCC. They started attending New Covenant Presbyterian Church in October of 2018, shortly after moving to Hampton Roads. He is currently working in Academic Advising at Regent University. He is involved in the Youth Ministry at New Covenant and likes to spend his free time spending time with his family and surfing.


Bill Pon

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.


Josh Escamilla

Josh grew up in Raleigh, NC and graduated from Lees-McRae college in western NC. He came to Virginia Beach in 2017 with the Coast Guard and was thankful to join New Covenant's church family. He leads the worship team and youth ministry, and is studying music at Virginia Wesleyan University. He is excited, thankful, and humbled for the opportunity to serve God and the church in new ways and to connect with the larger body of Christ through these ministries.