New staff announced in Connectional Ministries
June 27, 2023
Three new staff will be joining the Connectional Ministries Team in Summer 2023.
Rev. Dr. LaKeeyna Cooper will start July 1, 2023 as Director of Missional Engagement. Cooper served most recently as Director of Missions & Program Engagement for the General Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. Cooper received a Master of Divinity from Duke Divinity and a Doctor of Ministry from the Proctor School of Theology.
Rev. JoAnn Batteiger will start August 1, 2023 as Assistant Director of Missional Engagement. Batteiger served most recently as Director of Student Ministries at Herndon UMC in Herndon. Batteiger received a Master of Divinity from the Candler School of Theology. She was commissioned as a provisional deacon at the 2023 Virginia Annual Conference session.
Rev. Hannah Bryn will start July 1, 2023 as the Assistant Director of Discipleship and Congregational Vitality. Bryn served most recently as the Associate Pastor at Discovery UMC in Richmond. Bryn received a Master of Arts in Christian Practice from Duke Divinity School. She was ordained as a deacon at the 2022 North Carolina Annual Conference session.
Rev. Dr. Jonathan Page, Director of Connectional Ministries for Innovation and Creativity, shared about the new staff, “I’m excited to welcome LaKeeyna, JoAnn, and Hannah to our Connectional Ministries team. Each of these leaders brings a vital combination of grounded experience, fresh perspective, and strong leadership that will be a blessing to the Virginia Annual Conference and the entire United Methodist connection.”
The Director of Advocacy position will be reviewed and reopened to potential candidates in the near future.
Bishop Sue Haupert-Johnson and the Virginia Annual Conference Common Table announced plans for a reorganization in the conference Connectional Ministries Office in a previous April 5, 2023 communication.
In the reorganization, the current offices of Learning, Influencing, and Serving will become the offices of Missional Engagement, under the leadership of the Director of Missional Engagement and the Office of Discipleship and Congregational Vitality under the leadership of Mr. Dwayne Stinson, Director of Connectional Ministries for Discipleship and Congregational Vitality. Mr. Stinson and Rev. Dr. Jonathan Page, Director of Connectional Ministries for Innovation and Creativity, will share the role of Director of Connectional Ministries. Dr. Page will ensure that innovation is part of all areas of the ministry Connectional Ministries supports.