Meet Our Team

Find information on the key team members that serve at each of our two campuses. 

  • Pastor Darrell Koop

    Lead PAstor

    Howdy! It’s an honor to be the pastor of this great church. Niki and I moved to Williamson County in 2000 to start this church in our living room. We have three kids: Kaleb, Noel, and Danielle. I’m an Aggie (class of 1990) and later went to seminary at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary for a Master of Divinity with Biblical languages. I love turtles and landscaping. Niki is a physical therapist. 

    I hope to meet you in person on Sunday!

  • Brian shanklin

    Rotating Pastor

    I am a teaching pastor and I travel and speak at both campuses. My father was a pastor and I was definitely the prodigal son. I promised to never be a pastor, and tried doing life my way, but God had different plans. I have a passion for God, God’s Word, learning, and teaching His Word and His Truth with others. God has truly blessed me with an amazing wife, Jennifer, and 4 great, yet a little crazy, kids. I am a fulltime HVAC contractor in my real life and the greatest ministry is the day to day life we share with others. We would love for you to join us at Upwards Church where Jesus is King and Lord of Lords, God’s Word and Truth is spoken and shared, and the people are real, not fake! Hope to see you soon!!

  • Lewis Alexander

    Rotating Pastor



    pwards Church! I grew up on a small Central Texas farm with chickens, pigs, goats, cows, rabbits, horses, raccoons, dogs and cats. I never imagined that I would be living part time in Central America on the beach, commuting monthly to work and church. For work, I get paid to teach people how to love each other! As a volunteer, I get to teach people how to love the Lord, His Word, His people and His Mission. Please join me on Sunday mornings at one of our 2 locations.

  • Michael arce

    Spanish pastor

    It’s a privilege to be the pastor for the Spanish-speaking community. My wife Yvonne and I came to Texas with our children Widamys and Michael in 2003 through the United States Army. I love encouraging people to live up to their God given purpose. I also enjoy traveling to learn about other countries and cultures. We would love to have you join us during our Sunday service or our en Espanol connect group!

  • Alcoholics anonymous


    Join us on Wednesdays at our Jarrell campus from 8:00 PM to 9:00 PM for our AA recovery group meeting. Find hope, healing, support, and growth.

Jarrell Campus Leaders



    I am married to my best friend, Charlie. We have 2 daughters, 4 grandsons, 3 dogs, and many goats. Church has always been an essential part of our family life. I joined the Children’s Ministry Team when we first joined the church. I feel called to share the love of Jesus and God’s word with our children. I became the Children’s Minister in 2013. My favorite scripture is Proverbs 22:6. We have an awesome church family and hope you will join us for worship.

  • paula Neal

    Worship Administrator

    I love serving with our worship team and leading others to worship. If you have a musical, vocal or technical talent, please contact me to join our Worship Team! 


    Upwards Preschool Director (Jarrell) & YOUTH minister

    I attended Anderson University to study Christian Ministries in 2006. Since then, I have been involved with youth in one way or another, both as a minister, with young life and even coaching sports teams. As a wife and mother of three, I feel so strongly that God has called me to this particular area to lead a preschool ministry as well as a youth group to minister our children in knowing Christ. Please contact me for more information on our Jarrell Campus preschool or youth group!



    My husband and I began repairing and maintaining our church building to serve God with the gifts He gave us. We have three children and enjoy helping with the Children’s Ministry also. If you’re a handy person and would like to help keep our facility maintained, please contact us.

  • jennifer gadison

    outreach Ministry

    I love reaching out to others in our community, serving them, and inviting them to know Jesus! If you would like to join me in our local outreach ministry, please contact me!

  • PHIL sybert

    Safety team Ministry

    It is important to me to keep our church family safe while we are serving others and worshipping God! If you are interested in joining our Safety Team, please contact me.

  • Gary Gadison

    Landscaping Ministry

    I’m married to Jennifer, and we have four wonderful children and a lovely granddaughter. Following my military career in the U.S. Marines, my family returned to Central Texas. I’m involved in the Landscaping Ministry at Upwards Church. I feel that a first impression is everything, and I strive daily to ensure that God's house and all what we've been blessed with is always presentable. If you would like to be part of our team, please let me know.

  • Will Mackin, Sr.

    Greeting Ministry

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  • Mark Garcia

    Connection Center Ministry

    My wife Bea and I found Upwards Jarrell in 2021. We love the family atmosphere and are grateful for the opportunity to serve. I worked in the Healthcare field in various roles for 19 years (most recently as a Physical Therapist Assistant), before venturing out to serve my community as a fitness coach. We have 4 dogs now, and hope to have as many as 5 kids, God willing! I serve as the Connection Center Ministry Leader & Couples Connect Group Leader. Please let me know if you'd like to greet or assist our guests at the Jarrell Campus!