Staff

Michael Keller

Pastor

Michael Keller has been a part of Redeemer life and ministry from its inception in 1989. Married for over 15 years, his wife Sara and daughters Lucy and Kate have attended the West Side congregation with him for eight years before planting Redeemer Lincoln Square. Michael attended NYC public school for both elementary and middle school, then attended​ The Stony Brook School for high school, and graduated from Vanderbilt University, where he double majored in Psychology and History. Michael worked at New Life church in Queens before he attended Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, receiving both an M.Div and a Th.M in Apologetics. Following seminary Michael joined the staff of Citylife Presbyterian Church in Boston for five years where he was the Pastor of Community Life. Sara, at the same time, earned her Ed.M. at Harvard University. Upon returning to New York City, Michael and Sara started and established the college ministry City Campus Ministry (​Reformed University Fellowship). ​ Michael is currently enrolled in a Ph.D. program at the Free University of Amsterdam in Computational Linguistics applied to Historical Theology. His dissertation is currently being reviewed. Sara is currently enrolled at Columbia University to get an MS as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner.

Chuck Armstrong

Pastoral Resident

Chuck, who studied journalism at Kansas State University, worked in the radio and music industry for the last decade. In 2015, he joined the inaugural cohort of Reformed Theological Seminary's NYC campus, and has since graduated with his M.A. in Biblical Studies. He came on-staff with Redeemer in September 2016, serving as Pastoral Resident for the Redeemer Lincoln Square congregation. In his role, Chuck works with all of the Community Groups that call Lincoln Square their home, helps oversee the church's membership process, and assists Michael in pastoral care. Through the pastoral residency program—a direct result of the Rise campaign—he continues to go through various educational and developmental experiences that will better equip and train him for pastoral ministry in the city, including the City Ministry Year training with Redeemer City to City. Chuck lives on the Upper West Side with his wife Celine—who is expecting their first child in January 2017—and their cockapoo, Sassy.

Jenni Bounds

Children's Ministry Director

Jenni Bounds grew up in a small town in the mountains of northern Idaho. After graduating with a degree in voice performance from Furman University, she moved to NYC (and the UWS). She intended to stay for only 6 weeks—but that was over 18 years ago! She’s worked steadily as an actress, singer and model in theatre, film and TV, and as a makeup artist in between. Jenni has been an active part of Redeemer since moving to the city, and even met her husband, Brent, in a Redeemer Community Group. When she's not chasing after their three sons, Griffin, Wyatt and Sawyer, she's an avid half-marathoner, event planner and tennis player. As our Children’s Ministry Director, Jenni helps foster an environment in which parents, families, youth and young professionals desire to share in the lives of young children and teach them about the gospel. “I love gathering people into community and connecting to others,” says Jenni. “My role on the LSQ team is to gather people into Children’s Ministry and connect them to some of the youngest members or our larger Redeemer community. How cool is that?” Jenni's favorite Upper West Side restaurant: “The Mermaid Inn—their fish tacos are the BEST!”

Tarina Corelli

Ministry Director

Tarina is a Richmond, Virginia native who made her way to the Big Apple after graduating with a Marketing Management degree from Virginia Tech (Go Hokies!). She began attending Redeemer immediately upon moving to NYC to start her career in advertising. After three years of account management at DDB New York, she decided it was time for a change and transitioned to working at Redeemer full-time. Tarina met her husband, Jeff, through Redeemer and they now live on the Upper West Side. In her spare time, Tarina enjoys scouting new thrift shops around the city and catching up with friends over a cup of coffee.

Iain Coston

Children's Minsitry Sunday Operations Coordinator

Iain is a native of San Francisco, California where he grew up rooting for the (San Francisco) Giants, 49ers, and Warriors (yes, even before the Warriors were good). After moving to New York City in 2015, Iain immediately began attending Redeemer. By August of that year he had found one of his favorite jobs – working the Children's Ministry front desk at Redeemer WS. Iain worked with Redeemer West Side Children's Ministry for two years before joining the Redeemer LSQ team in April 2017. He has loved working with and getting to know our LSQ Kids and families. When he's not reading Aristotle or learning about business cycles, you can find him at a local diner attempting to find the best omelette in the area.

Jennifer Depner

Ministry Coordinator

Jennifer spent her first 25 years across the 3 western provinces in Canada before meeting her Seattle-native husband, Edwin, and moving to the US. They lived in Seattle for 4 years before taking off on a year-long adventure sabbatical. When they arrived in NYC they were still on their sabbatical, but after learning about the Rise Campaign on their first day in New York, they began to feel a strong tug on their hearts to stay and be a part of what Redeemer is doing in the City. They have been putting down roots ever since. Jennifer has a diverse career background. She is trained in Esthetics and worked in a resort spa for 5 years before working as a Community Support Worker for a Health Canada pilot-project for youth experiencing psychosocial consequences due to substance use. She also has a decade of ministry experience, most prominently as the Coordinator for Voltage, Saskatchewan’s largest chem-free New Year’s Eve party for teens. Jennifer and Edwin live in Williamsburg, and love to spend time exploring the city, cooking and interacting with engaging stories, whether that is with friends, movies, books or the person sitting next to them on the subway.

Brooke Schasteen-Smith

Operations and Volunteer Manager

Born and raised in Tennessee, Brooke grew up in the South, but currently resides in New York City where this amazing city has stolen her heart. Aside from living in TN and NYC, she also lived in Mississippi where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Child Life Therapy from Mississippi State University. After graduation, she began her career as a counselor at an agency in Knoxville. After counseling students on extremely diverse topics she made a difficult decision to completely change her career path to working in the media industry at Scripps Networks Interactive. Most recently Brooke was in charge of developing, marketing, and executing promotions for HGTV, Food Network, and Travel Channel. After four years at Scripps Brooke decided to make another career change and join our team at Redeemer LSQ. Brooke helped us in the beginning stages of LSQ as she served on our launch team. She is now the leader for all of our Sunday Service and Operations teams. Aside from working, Brooke enjoys volunteering with Hope for New York as a mentor to high school students, running in Central Park, seeking out new adventures and traveling both internationally and domestically.

Jon Werking

Director of Worship and Arts

I was born and grew up in upstate NY (upper Hudson Valley) and came to NYC in the late 80’s to pursue a career in music. I've been involved in Redeemer's music ministry for over 25 years and it's been one of the great blessings of my life. I’m married to Rhoda and together we have five kids ranging in age from 9 to 23. As the Director of Worship and Arts, I regularly choose, arrange, orchestrate, and perform music that exhorts and blesses the believer while at the same time engages the visitor/seeker. Hobbies I enjoy are reading, bike riding, and sports of all kinds. A unique fact about myself is that I was born with an extra thumb on my right hand which forced me to become left-handed.