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OUR STAFF

Liz Bentz

Volunteer Coordinator

As volunteer coordinator for Crossroads, Liz manages the schedules and workloads of the over 150 volunteers that serve at the home office each week. From stuffing envelopes to reviewing lessons, the Crossroads operations center runs smoothly and efficiently, and Liz attributes it to the volunteers’ dedication and belief in the ministry. When she does get time away, she loves spending it with her family and four grandchildren or taking cruises to someplace warm, where you can do as little or as much as you like and still see new parts of the world.

Liz Bentz

Volunteer Coordinator

Isaac Bowman

Graphic Designer

Isaac graduated from Kalamazoo Valley Community College with a degree in graphic design. After spending a few years doing freelance work, he interned with Crossroads in the graphic design department. He is now a permanent employee, designing print materials and curating the Crossroads art gallery. Isaac enjoys running, traveling, music, woodworking and spending time with his family (he has eleven siblings!).

Isaac Bowman

Graphic Designer

Catie Brumels

Operations Assistant

Catie is an operations assistant for Crossroads. In other words, she makes sure that everything that needs to get done around the office, gets done. She and her husband Luke were married in July 2017 just before Catie started at Crossroads. They love spending time together outdoors. Top of their list for outdoor activities are hiking the Manistee River Trail, exploring the lesser known trails of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park and hanging out and cooking around a campfire. Catie has even backpacked the entire Camino De Santiago that reaches from the boarder of France to the Spanish coast. She also loves art, sewing and baking and their dog Stoney. She and Luke have a baby coming soon (July of 2018)!

Catie Brumels

Operations Assistant

Amy Cain

Writer/Editor

Amy has been working at Crossroads since 2014 and currently serves as a copy editor and writer in the communications department. She enjoys the opportunity to use both her eye for detail and her creative side to help tell stories of Crossroads students. Hearing stories of lives being changed by the power of God is her favorite part of the ministry. In her spare time, Amy loves performing, whether acting on stage at a local theatre or singing solos at church. She and her husband enjoy singing and acting, attending performances together and playing games with friends.

Amy Cain

Writer/Editor

Elisse Drooger Cuevas

Spanish Coordinator

Elisse was born and raised in Mexico, but ever since she was young, she found the United States fascinating and worked on practicing her English all the time (which explains her little accent). When she was nineteen, she decided to come to Michigan to study music, because she loved (and still loves) to sing, but she ended up graduating from Cornerstone University with a degree in communications. She also married a country boy, which means she gets to stay here for good. She considers becoming part of the Crossroads team to be one of the biggest blessings yet from God.

Elisse Drooger Cuevas

Spanish Coordinator

Doug Cupery

Church Mobilization Director

Doug joined Crossroads in 2017 after working for several years at Ridge Point Community Church as the local missions pastor and leader of the church’s jail ministry. He also spent several years at 70 x 7 Life Recovery, working with former prisoners returning to their communities. Before that, he worked as a paramedic and registered nurse. As church mobilization director, Doug has a passion for engaging and equipping the church to care for prisoners around the world.

Doug Cupery

Church Mobilization Director

JR DeGroot

Operations Director

With a BA in business and accounting from Calvin College and 30 years of business experience, JR lives for financials, budgets, forecasts—anything that can live in a spreadsheet. Before coming to Crossroads in 2015 as the operations director, he worked for 23 years in the private corrections industry, managing finances and operations of multiple facilities across the country. He has been married to his wife, Laura, for 30 years and has twin daughters, who are both Calvin grads. He’s a native of Chicago, but grew up in Colorado, where he developed a passion for the Rockies, Broncos and University of Colorado Buffaloes.

JR DeGroot

Director of Operations
and Finance

Mackenzie Gregg

Operations Coordinator

Mackenzie first connected with Crossroads as a volunteer in fifth grade. Now she serves as an operations coordinator and is in charge of producing all of the lessons and documents the ministry prints in-house and organizing the volunteers and staff to get it done. She also serves as part of the volunteer support team. She is blown away by how God uses such a small staff and a large number of volunteers with the same vision to reach prisoners across the world. In her spare time, she and her husband Justin can be found renovating their 100-year-old farmhouse, where they live with their two dogs: Howie, a redbone coonhound, and Simba, a husky, labrador and golden retriever mix.

Mackenzie Gregg

Operations Coordinator

Dave Gilman

Vice President of Advancement

Dave leads Crossroads’s marketing, communications and fundraising efforts. He’s worked with nonprofit ministries for eighteen years and loves to see people’s hearts embrace great needs as they find the joy of generous giving. Dave also serves as adjunct faculty at Cornerstone University. Dave and his wife have four kids, in every stage. His extracurricular activities include listening to music of every sort, thinking about sailing and working on his 90 year old house.

Dave Gilman

Vice President of Advancement

Rick Harper

Operations Assistant

Over the past 33 years, Rick has pastored four churches and was a professor of practical ministries at a Christian college. Before joining the staff, Rick volunteered for three years at Crossroads Prison Ministries and continues to be a mentor. Rick and his wife Elizabeth have been married 42 years, have three married children and ten grandchildren. The Harpers enjoy their involvement in lay ministries at their local church, family time and a good Pittsburgh Steelers football game!

Rick Harper

Operations Assistant

Kyle Hoogewerf

Visual Brand Coordinator

Kyle has been with Crossroads for a little over two years. In that time, he has served in a multitude of capacities, from photographer to videographer to level one in-house tech support. He currently serves as the head of the graphic design team at Crossroads, which utilizes all of his four computer- and design-related degrees. When he is not helping Crossroads communicate its message online and in print, Kyle keeps himself busy wandering through VR (virtual reality) and immersing himself in a variety of different hobbies: electronics, puzzles, comics, graphic novels and painting miniatures. Kyle loves working at Crossroads because there are so many stories of hurt and pain in the world, and he enjoys being part of a team that is doing something about that every day.

Kyle Hoogewerf

Visual Brand Coordinator

Alicia Janowski

Curriculum Development Coordinator

Alicia is part of the curriculum development team here at Crossroads. Originally from Canada, Alicia is now a proud permanent resident of the United States. While completing an MA in educational ministries at Calvin Seminary, she met her husband, Mark, who is finishing his MDiv while serving as a chaplain for the Michigan Army National Guard. For the first time in 20 years, Alicia is not in school and is learning to fill her free time. She loves playing the piano, doing art projects and exercising. Alicia and Mark love to hike, watch movies and dream of traveling the world.

Alicia Janowski

Curriculum Development Coordinator

Joni Jessup

Church Mobilization Coordinator

Joni graduated from Western Michigan University with a master’s degree in counseling, but after a brief stint working for a school district, she ended up in the world of property management for almost twenty-five years. The call to serve never went away, so Joni took a leap of faith and started seeking other career possibilities. That search led her to Habitat for Humanity of Kent County, where she worked on the volunteer services team for nine years, and then to Family Promise of Grand Rapids. During those years, Joni gained a tremendous amount of respect for the impact that volunteers have on the lives of others. She has a passion for working with volunteers, and the love, commitment and dedication of volunteers never ceases to amaze her! When not at work, Joni enjoys reading, gardening and time with family and friends, especially when it involves playing cards or board games. She is very excited to be part of the Crossroads team!

Joni Jessup

Church Mobilization Coordinator

Jennifer Kimball

Lead Operations Coordinator

Jennifer has a degree in organizational leadership from Southeastern University, so it’s no surprise that she is one of the operations coordinators at Crossroads and also serves as part of the volunteer support team. Born in East Lansing, Jennifer is a sports fanatic and openly confesses she “bleeds green.” If there is a Michigan State game on, especially football or basketball, she’ll be watching. She also loves to travel. She once saw the Apostle Paul’s jail cell in Philippi and she dreams of going to Australia someday. Crossroads has an extension site there, so maybe we can line something up?

Jennifer Kimball

Lead Operations Coordinator

Aaron Mueller

Communications Director

Aaron is a recovering journalist. He spent seven years as a reporter/editor/photographer/designer at several different newspapers in Michigan. A passionate storyteller, Aaron continues to share people’s stories as the communications director for Crossroads. He leads the communications team, which produces newsletters, promotional material, training documents and curriculum for the ministry. He is also a pastoral intern at his church, a coffee nerd (he has nine brewing methods at home), a wannabe ping pong master, a husband and a dad. He can die happy now that his Cubs have won the World Series.

Aaron Mueller

Communications Director

Dara Nykamp

Curriculum Development Director

A Holland native and Hope College grad, Dara brings several years of nondenominational curriculum writing experience to Crossroads with a background steeped in the Reformed tradition. She has degrees from Wayne State Law and Western Theological Seminary. She has worked as an assistant prosecutor, assisted in teaching Hebrew and is a writer by trade. She can typically be found helping out at a local theater, canvassing for a cause, mountain biking, tracking down the world’s best cheeseburger or hanging out with Tonks (her cat). She loves helping people have important conversations about God and life and enjoys using her skills and expertise to direct Crossroads’s curriculum.

Dara Nykamp

Curriculum Development Director

Amy Olivares

International Coordinator

Amy has a heart for the Hispanic and migrant community in the US, which motivated her to complete an MA in Latin American literature and linguistics from Western Michigan University. Formerly a Spanish language teacher, she now serves as the international coordinator at Crossroads. Amy loves learning to cook foods from other cultures and learning to speak different languages. She also enjoys traveling and dancing. If she has free time, she often spends it swimming or reading. Amy is excited to serve and watch God move in and through Crossroads as we remember those who are in prison as though we were there with them.

Amy Olivares

International Coordinator

Meckenzie Rookus

Operations Assistant

As the Crossroads receptionist, Kenzie opens nearly ALL the mail at Crossroads. That means that she touches almost all of the over 800,000 pieces of mail that come into the office each year. When she’s not greeting people with a smile at the front desk, Kenzie loves swing dancing, searching out the best coffee house environments in Grand Rapids and road-tripping across the United States. You can’t beat music, friends and just going where the road takes you!

Meckenzie Rookus

Operations Assistant

Bernice Roshak

Lead Student Activities Coordinator

Bernice has worked at Crossroads for 16 years, currently serving as the student activities coordinator. She has been connected to Crossroads since she was a child, when she remembers coming home at her nightly curfew to find her mother reviewing Crossroads lessons. One of her favorite things about her job is reading student testimonies of how studying God’s Word with Crossroads has changed their lives. When not working, Bernice enjoys watching football with her family (Go Blue! Go Pack Go!) or reading one of her 400-plus books in her personal library.

Bernice Roshak

Lead Student Activities Coordinator

Eunice Schippers

Accountant

Eunice is grateful for the opportunity she has had to work in the financial/accounting department of Crossroads for 17 years. Her family includes her husband of 36 years, four children and their spouses and nine precious grandchildren. Some of her interests include crafting, biking, traveling and bargain hunting. As part of the Crossroads team, Eunice loves to see how Christ uses the church, prayer partners, donors and staff to share the Good News with those who are forgotten by society.

Eunice Schippers

Accountant

Malorie VanWeelden

Executive Assistant

A proud Canadian, Malorie joined Crossroads in 2017 from the “True North, strong and free,” with a degree in international development from Redeemer University in Ontario. Currently working on a master’s degree in international affairs, Malorie has a passion for systemic and structural change in justice and human rights systems around the world. Having felt called to ministry for as long as she can remember, Malorie is so excited to join Crossroads as an executive assistant and looks forward to serving through her love for organization, strategic planning and development. In her free time, Malorie loves to camp, cook, spend time with friends, talk about God and the deep questions of life, travel and play football (what she calls real football, not “American” football).

Malorie VanWeelden

Executive Assistant

Sharon VanWieren

Student Activities Coordinator

Sharon has a degree in sociology from Calvin College. She began as a volunteer for Crossroads in 2002 and was offered a part-time job shortly after that. One of her favorite parts of her job is reading student testimonies. Sharon and her husband have two grown children and three adorable grandchildren. When not at work, Sharon enjoys singing in the church choir and going on church mission trips. She also is part of the Moms in Prayer group that visits women in the Kent County Jail weekly.

Sharon VanWieren

Student Activities Coordinator

Cynthia Williams

International Director

Cynthia serves as the director of international ministries at Crossroads. Her experience of living in many countries around the world allows her to bring to her role both a cross-cultural understanding and a heart for taking Christ’s love and Gospel across borders and behind walls. Cynthia enjoys exploring out-of-the-way places, learning new languages, eating ethnic food and making friends around the globe. She currently lives in Sweden with her husband, and they have three grown children and one grandchild in the United States, whom they miss very much.

Cynthia Williams

International Director

Alaina Zwiernikowski

Operations Coordinator

Alaina is an operations coordinator at Crossroads. She came to Crossroads after working in the medical field. Alaina enjoys helping others, so her position at Crossroads is a great fit for her, as it allows her to help mentors and students on their journeys in relationship with one another and with God. In her free time, Alaina likes being active—skiing, running and paddle boarding. Alaina’s evenings are spent with her husband and their 7-month-old puppy, Basil.

Alaina Zwiernikowski

Operations Coordinator