Meet Our 2024 Speaker & Track Leaders

On Friday Night before our main session begins, the students will watch a quick video from our track leaders explaining their tracks this year! After the video, they will have the opportunity to sign up for 3 different tracks. This way they are able to choose topics that are relatable and applicable to them! Our hope is that you'll take the information below to your students BEFORE Discover Conference so they can start praying about which tracks they would like to be a part of. Keep in mind, some tracks will have a limit of how many students can attend, due to the size of the room. We have indicated below how many tracks will be available for that particular topic. As leaders, we know this might get a little tricky for you. We will have our staff in each track room to help students, but we would like you as leaders to try and go where you feel you are most needed as well. You know your students better than we do!

  • Derry Prenkert

    Main Session Speaker & Track Leader

    Discover a little about DerryDerry has 25 years of youth ministry experience in the local church. 23 years of that time was spent at one church, and 2.3 years at the other. He has experienced the joys of longevity and the power of diving in for a short assignment at a church in need of a transitional leader. He has also faced the challenges,  pains, and pitfalls that come with pouring his life into the next generation and those who invest in them. Derry hosts a podcast for youth ministers called “My Third Decade In Youth Ministry,” and has authored numerous resources through Download Youth Ministry. He married his college sweetheart in 2000. They have 4 kids - 1 in state adoption, 1 interstate adoption, 1 international adoption, and one biological. He is a Chicago Cubs and Indianapolis Colts fan, and loves all things Disney Parks.

    Derry is a rockstar and will not only be bringing our Main Session messages, but he will be leading two tracks during Discover. The first track is just for graduating Seniors! We know this can be an exciting, scary, often unknown time in your life and Derry hopes to encourage and guide you as you think through your next steps and what your faith will look like after high school. This track will be available during Track #1.

    Derry's other track is just for... YOUTH LEADERS! That's right! You get a track just for you! We'll take care of your students while they are in their final track. If you feel you would benefit from sitting down with Derry while he encourages, supports, and helps you minister from a healthy place - please do so! This track will be offered on Sunday during Track #3.

  • Dan Hamrick
    "Discovering God Through His Word"

    Discover a little about Dan: Dan has been part of the Discover Conference team since its inception in 2017 and has been working with students for over 20 years. For 17+ years Dan served on staff at Colonial Woods Missionary Church and just recently took a position at Granger Community Church in Granger, IN where he serves as the Director of Family Ministries.  Dan is passionate about teaching students about Jesus and helping them take their next steps towards Christ.  Dan and his wife Stephanie have 3 kids: Nicole who is a freshman at Bethel University, Taylor who is a Senior in High School, and Wilson who is in 3rd grade.

    Track DetailsHave you ever been on a Church Trip and your Youth Pastor says we are going to take the next 30-60 minutes for everybody to do devotions and you have no idea what to do or where to begin?  Or maybe you have been wanting to dive into God’s Word but you don’t know how or where to start.  This track is a great place to start.  Not only are we going to learn how to Discover God through His Word, we are going to take time to actually practice what we are learning.  Utilizing the S.O.A.P. Method, we are going to learn how to study God’s Word so that we can apply it to our lives.

    Target Audience: Dan's track will be offered during Tracks 1, 2, and 3. The target audience is for students who are new to Discover Conference. 
  • Bailey Horn
    "So...What is ministry anyways?"

    Discover a little about BaileyBailey is a father (Emery) and husband (Aden). He is the lead pastor at Sturgis Evangelical Church, a new Missionary Church. He has worked with many churches around the church in church planting, teaching, and equipping. His passion is to see the Church reach the unreached and send the saints to do God’s work in communities.

    Track Details: This track is all about learning about ministry. We will discuss how to get into ministry. We will discuss how to find out what sort of ministry you may be called to. We will talk about the thing's colleges can’t teach you about ministry. More than anything, this track’s goal is to increase character, competence, AND call.

    Target Audience: Bailey's track will be offered one time - during Track #3. The target audience is anyone who feels a call to ministry or anyone who wonders what a pastor really does.

  • Andrea Miller

    "Discovering God through Prayer"

    Discover a little about Andrea: Andrea has been leading in youth ministry since 2017 and loves what Discover Conference is all about! She has a passion for empowering middle school and high school students to grow in their walk with Jesus and thrive in the gifts God has given them. You’ll typically find her with coffee, with friends, or at home watching football or Gilmore Girls while she paints her nails. Andrea and her husband Nate live in Bluffton, IN, where Nate works as a YouTuber and Andrea serves as the Middle School Youth Pastor at Hope Missionary Church since 2020. 

    Track Details: What is prayer anyway? What do we pray for? Is it a one-sided conversation, or only words that we say over our food to hopefully make it taste better or before a big game or test? This track will dive deeper into prayer and give you a way to pray that you can personalize and take home with you. Prayer shouldn’t be boring, so join us as we learn a model of prayer from God’s word, spend time in prayer, and discover more of who God is as we intentionally spend time with Him. 

    Target Audience: Andrea's track will be available during Track #1. This track is beneficial for anyone who has questions about prayer- what is prayer, how to pray, what to pray, etc. You can be new to faith or simply need a space to pause and pray in a different way in your walk with Jesus.

  • Katie Johnson

    "Middle School...Will I survive it?"

    Discover a little about KatieKatie Johnson is the director of the 6th-8th grade student ministry at Colonial Woods Church. Originally from Indiana, “Go Colts”, she has lived in Port Huron for the last 10 years. Middle schoolers are her people, and she absolutely loves working with them! Katie also loves sports (both watching and playing), hanging out with her family and friends, tacos, and Diet Pepsi! She recently got engaged and is planning on getting married in 2024. 

    Track Details: Are you in middle school? Do you have questions about how to survive it? Well, this is the track for you! We will be talking about many things that middle schoolers experience daily and what the Bible has to say about how to handle them! 

    Katie's track will be available during Track #1. This track's target audience is pretty obvious- middle schoolers (students in 6th-8th grade!)

  • Tim Matteson

    "Laws, Lists, and Love"

    Discover a little about TimI’ve been teaching a Bible class at my church for more than 25 years.  It’s really simple: the class chooses a book of the Bible and we study that book verse by verse for as long as it takes.  It’s hard, sometimes it gets a little dry, but it never fails to teach and amaze us.  Each time we dive into the Old Testament we’re blown away by a new discovery of ancient culture and history, of words with powerful meanings; we always find a God who is gracious, loving, and passionate.  And we always find something very, very relevant.

    Track Details: Why bother with the Old Testament when we’re living under grace?  Isn’t it just a bunch of laws and Jewish history?  It’s easy to look at the Old Testament as a dusty account of wars, legislation, and a grouchy God who liked to smack people down when they screwed up.  But is it possible that we’re missing out?  Is it possible that we could study the Old Testament and *not* end up with lists of dos and don’ts or a bunch of uncomfortable topics swept under the rug?  Maybe it’s possible to study the Old Testament and find the same loving and gracious God we see in the New Testament…

    Target Audience:  is for anyone who is curious or confused about the Old Testament. This will be offered during Track #3.

  • Women in Ministry Panel

    Can women do anything a man can do? Should women only be allowed to do certain jobs at a church? In the world? Is Taylor Swift more famous than Travis Kelce? Often the phrase "women in ministry" is surrounded by debates and controversy. Join Pastor Norm Dial as our host and a panel of women who are serving in various areas of ministry as we talk about what it means to be a "Woman in Ministry" in a biblical and God-honoring way. 

    Target Audience: This track is open for anyone and will only be offered during Track #2.

  • Chris Lehane (and members of the Worship Band aka LeBand)

    "How to Worship a King"

    Discover a little about Chris: "Chris has served in ministry for over 20 years in Northern Indiana focused in Student, Young Adult and Worship ministries. Chris is an experienced worship leader having led worship in numerous church, camp, conference and retreat settings but loves leading worship with students the most.  He currently serves as the Worship Pastor at Wakarusa Missionary Church and has served as a part of the Discover Conference team since it started in 2017.  As a worship leader his heart's desire is to help people connect and experience God in a real and authentic way through worship. He and his wife, Rose, have four daughters: Jordyn, Kara, Madilyn & Taylor."  

    Track Details: What is worship anyway? How do we worship? Is it just singing songs? Why is it important in the life of Christ Follower? How does it help us go deeper in our relationship with Christ? In this track we’ll explore what the Bible says about worship, the part we play in worship, ways we can worship and more.  We’ll also have a short time of Q & A with some of the worship team members. 

    Target Audience: Open to Middle School & High School Students interested in better understanding worship or who are interested or involved in leading worship at their church and in their youth group. Available during Track #2.
  • Jeremy and Mindie Tice

    "Evangelism with Kingdom Perspective"

    Discover a little about Jeremy & MindieJeremy and Mindie are in their 23rd year of serving as missionaries with World Partners. They have lived in Guinea, Senegal, France, and Germany and are now serving as the Missionaries in Residence at Bethel University. They have three children- two sons attending Bethel and a nine year old daughter. Jeremy and Mindie are excited to work with Missionary Church youth, helping them hear and answer the call to reach the ends of the Earth.

    Track DetailsHave you ever struggled to figure out how to share Jesus with your friends? Have you ever wondered how Jesus can use you right now? This track will give some fresh Biblical perspective on Jesus as King and our role as citizens in His Kingdom. This track will give you practical ways to live this out and opportunity to practice how to do it. 

    Target Audience: This track would be best for those who are interested in learning more about living for the King in His Kingdom now and making truth available to their peers. Available during all tracks.

  • Pat Puglisi

    "I want to be an Influencer"

    Discover a little about PatPat has been a part of the Discover Conference team for a number of years.  He has a passion for students and a desire to connect with the next generation of the Church.  He has been working with students for over 25 years and still has a great passion to inspire young people.  In his own journey of following Jesus he has learned how vital relationships are to our own growth and the growth of others.  Pat enjoys looking at practical ways we can share the hope of Jesus with others, no matter their walk of life.  

    Track DetailsJoin us for a conversation around how we can inspire others to consider and follow Jesus. Jesus modeled discipleship through relationships. We will explore how the reach of our influence will depend greatly on our relationships.  We will look at practical ways to build relationships, broaden our sphere of influence, and inspire others to join in following Jesus. 

    Target Audience of Track: Those who wonder how to build relationships and use their  influence to help others find and follow Jesus. Available during all tracks.