Pastoral staff

Ed Kendrick

Lead Pastor

Ed Kendrick, Lead Pastor, began Heartland in 2002 after graduating that same year from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary with his Masters Degree in Divinity. In 2015, Ed completed his Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) degree, also from Southeastern Seminary. Prior to attending seminary and starting Heartland Church, Ed spent twenty years as a bank executive and served in various civic positions including Mayor for the City of Fort Meade, Florida.

Ed has been married to his wife, Nancy, since 1978. They have one daughter, Lauren, and two grandchildren, Colton and Kenzie.

Through Ed’s leadership, Heartland has grown from just 14 people in 2002 to more than 2,500 who call Heartland home today. His true passion is to see people come to know Jesus Christ as their personal Savior and to grow in their relationship with Him until they themselves are reaching others for Christ.

Ed’s hobbies include fishing, woodworking, and spending time in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina.

Colossians 1:17 is Ed’s life verse: “He is before all things and in Him all things hold together.”

 

Danny Moosbrugger

Executive Pastor

Danny Moosbrugger has served as Heartland’s Executive Pastor since May 2013.

Married to Bobbi, they have two adult children, Lori and Bryan, who are both married and live in Central Florida. They are not quite empty nesters – Hank still lives at home. He is black and chrome and weighs about 1,000 lbs when full of gas – their beloved Harley Davidson!

Danny’s education includes a B.A. in Biblical Studies from Florida Baptist College, a Master of Divinity with a minor in Counseling at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership from Regent University. Past positions held include Law Enforcement Officer, Student Pastor, Minister of Music, Senior Pastor, Church Administrator, and administrative positions at both Southeastern and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminaries.

Danny’s hobbies include motorcycle riding and reading. He enjoys all styles of Christian music!

Danny has a passion for helping others experience success through the accomplishment of their goals, and dreams, and when their “Ah-Ha” moments are realized and acted upon. He strives to lead others to an understanding of life through a biblical viewpoint.

 

Chad Dedmon

Family Life Pastor

Chad Dedmon stepped into the role of Family Life Pastor in August 2022.

Pastor Chad and his family began attending Heartland in June 2013 and became part of Heartland’s Student Ministry in August 2014. In April 2018, he was ordained in the ministry at Heartland Church and came on staff full time as student pastor. Chad subsequently completed his Master of Divinity at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in December 2020. In his current role his focus is on discipleship and families. 

Chad’s favorite verse is John 17:4: “I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.” He tries to live by this every day. Chad is married to Meagan, and they have two sons, Declan and Orin. The whole family are big supporters of the Liverpool Football Club!

 

Ricky Holder

PASTOR OF MISSIONS & LOGISTICS

Pastor Ricky joined the Heartland staff in 2020. A graduate of The Baptist College of Florida and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Ricky holds a BA in Missions and an MA in Christian Studies. He is currently pursuing a Doctor of Ministry in Christian Leadership from SEBTS. He and his wife, PJ, met and were married in 2009 while in college together. They have four children, Jason, Anthony, Rachel, and Ryann. The Holder family loves spending their spare time at Disney World.

Pastor Ricky has been serving in churches since 2007 and was ordained to Gospel Ministry in 2012. He has served in churches in Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina. Pastor Ricky has always had a passion for reaching the nations and has worked with ministries in Central America, Europe, Africa, and the United States. 

Pastor Ricky’s favorite verse is 2 Timothy 2:2 which says, “And what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also.” His goal in ministry is to equip others to share their faith boldly and share it often so that one day every tribe, tongue, and nation will worship Jesus.

 

David Nava

Heartland Espańol Pastor

David Nava is Pastor of Heartland’s Spanish congregation; Heartland Español. He and his wife, Triana, joined Heartland in 2021. They have been married for 27 years, and have two amazing kids, David Daniel and Grace Elizabeth.

He grew up in a Christian home in Maracaibo, Venezuela. At the age of 9, he came to know Jesus; which changed his life forever. He went on to earn certifications and degrees in “Pastoral and Missions” at the Ebenezer Bible Institute in San Cristóbal, a Bachelor’s degree in Theology at the “Centro Educativo Nacional de Teología Superior Milenium” (CENTESUM) in Maracaibo, and a Master’s in Pastoral Theology at the “Unidad Pedagógica Experimental  Libertador” (UPEL) in Maracaibo.

Pastor David is very passionate about teaching the Word of God and his favorite verse is 1 Peter 2:2 “Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation“.

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David Nava es el Pastor del Ministerio de Heartland Español. Ha plantado y pastoreado este ministerio en español desde 2021. Creció en un hogar Cristiano y a los 9 años tuvo un encuentro con Jesús que marcó su vida para siempre. En su niñes junto con sus padres, sirvieron en su iglesia local ministrando en sus alrededores. En su juventud participó y también ayudó a dirigir algunos grupos de jóvenes. Antes de llegar a los Estados Unidos hace unos años, supervisó varios ministerios en la Primera Iglesia Bautista en Maracaibo, Venezuela.

El pastor David obtuvo su educación y títulos en su país natal de Venezuela. Obtuvo su Maestría en Teología Pastoral en la UPEL de Maracaibo.

Para David su versículo favorito es 1 Pedro 2:2 “Desead, como a niño recién nacidos, la leche espiritual no adulterada, para que por ella crezcáis para la salvación”, David es un fiel vigilante de la palabra de verdad y muy apasionado a enseñar la sana doctrina y verdadera Palabra de Dios.

David y su esposa Triana han estado casados durante 27 años y tienen dos hijos, David Daniel y Grace Elizabeth.

High School Pastor

Robby Gross

High School Pastor

Robby Gross is the newest pastor at Heartland, starting in June 2023.

Robby and his wife Amelia, a native Floridian, were married in 2016, and have two young daughters, Micah and Malia, as well as their dog Ivey. Robby was born and raised in East Tennessee and is a graduate of the University of Tennessee. He was ordained into the ministry in 2016 and completed his master’s degree from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary that same year. He has a great desire to see the hearts and minds of students to be transformed by the Gospel.

During the fall, Robby will be heard whistling Rocky Top while watching the Tennessee Volunteers play on Saturdays. He also enjoys playing music, cycling, and cooking. Robby’s life verse is Colossians 3:23, “Whatever you do, work heartily as for the Lord and not for men.”

Doyle Eldridge

Children’s Pastor

Doyle Eldridge has been Heartland’s Children’s Pastor since January 2011. He was ordained into the Gospel ministry in April 1982 after graduating from Tennessee Temple University in Chattanooga, Tennessee in 1981 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Christian Ministries. Doyle has served at other churches in Alabama, Tennessee and Florida prior to coming on board with Heartland.

Doyle’s favorite Bible verse is Matthew 5:16: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” He has a passion to let his light shine for Jesus and to teach children to do the same. Doyle has been starting and leading Awana Clubs since 1989. He has personally started five Awana Clubs in Polk County and has also trained those from other churches to lead their own Awana programs.

Married to the love of his life, Toni, together they have five children and nine grandchildren. A fan of both the Tampa Bay Rays and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, you can often hear Doyle talk about the ups and downs of these teams.

 

FACILITIES, TECHNOLOGY & MEDIA PASTOR

Gary Grubbs

FACILITIES, Technology & Media Pastor

Florida born and raised, Gary has literally grown up in the church, having sat under the piano as his mother played for choir rehearsal each week. He began leading music in his home church in 1988 and shortly after, began to feel God’s call on his life to enter full-time ministry. In the Spring of 1994, Gary, along with his wife and young son made the move to Graceville, Florida to attend the Baptist College of Florida, where he received a B.A. in Music.

Upon graduation in 1997, he returned to Florida to take a full-time music ministry position at FBC Fort Meade. There he met Ed Kendrick, and the two quickly formed a strong friendship. Their desire to serve God and their shared vision for church planting began the birth of Heartland Church. Gary and Ed opened the doors to Heartland’s first service in the summer of 2002. Since that time Gary has served in various staff roles – Worship Pastor, Executive Pastor, and currently Technology, Media & Facilities Pastor.

Married to Stacey since 1987, they have two children, James and Jenna. They are also the proud grandparents of Ellis Gibson and Lucy Rae! Gary enjoys traveling to the Smoky Mountains, boating, and spending time with his family.

 

Mike White

Creative Arts Pastor

Mike White, Heartland’s Creative Arts Pastor, has been leading worship for 26 years. His passion is to see people making an authentic connection with God while finding freedom in a moving musical experience.

The passage of scripture that best defines his heart for worship is John 4:23: “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.”

He enjoys Sunday drives in his Jeep, playing his Taylor acoustic guitar, attending concerts from up-and-coming bands, playing tennis and basketball, and drinking kiwi-strawberry Vitamin waters. Mike’s favorite sporting teams are the Boston Red Sox and the Florida Gators. He also enjoys listening to Bethel Music, Hillsong United, U2, Switchfoot and Queen.

Mike is married to his high school sweetheart, Lizbeth. They have two children, Tabitha and Kari. Mike believes this life-affirming proverb: “In a world of compliments and criticisms, be sure the voice of God defines you.”

 

Administrative & Support staff

Kyle Lloyd

Communications Director

Kyle, along with his wife Stacy and youngest child Helene, come to us from New Mexico, though their Kansas roots run deep. Their two oldest children are happily married and still call Kansas home. Kyle served as Digital Media Director in Kansas at his local church for 8 years before taking on the role of Media & Communications Director for a church in New Mexico for 5 and a half years.

With a degree in Graphic Communications and Digital Media from Pittsburg State University, Kyle has used his talents to serve the Lord in ministry. He has also worked with major companies in the Kansas City area, including the prestigious Kaufman Foundation. His directing and video editing work has earned multiple awards in various film festivals around the country.

At Heartland, Kyle strives to point people to Jesus through his creativity, words, and actions. He lives by Joshua 24:15, ‘As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord,’ instilling this commitment in his family. Inspired by Ephesians 4:1, he aims to live a life worthy of his calling.

With his friendly nature and unwavering dedication, Kyle is a valuable member of our team at Heartland.

 

Alec Ledger

Digital Media Specialiist

Since 2010, Alec Ledger has called Heartland Church home. He quickly became involved in the tech and worship teams and has worked on staff since 2012. During that time, his role has grown and evolved, and he now serves as Video & Digital Media Specialist. On a weekly basis, Alec manages created video content, social media accounts, and photography teams. He also assists in planning and programming different elements of Heartland worship services, such as lighting, media, and creative worship elements.

Alec currently attends Southeastern University and is in the final stages of pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Worship Ministry. He has a passion for worship and creativity, and for working with technical teams and seeing these areas of ministries grow!

Alec’s favorite verse is James 1:17 – ‘Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.’

Ms. Bobbi

Bobbi Moosbrugger

Event Coordinator

Bobbi Moosbrugger began attending Heartland in May 2013 and became a staff member on February 1, 2014 as Hospitality/Event Director. She is married to Danny and they have two children, Bryan and Lori.

Bobbi had the great privilege of learning the gift of hospitality under the mentoring and teaching of Dr. Dorothy Patterson, the wife of the former President of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Using these “gifts,” she has served as Director of Hospitality at Southeastern Seminary, Southwestern Seminary, and Truett McConnell College. While at Truett, Bobbi also acted as the head cheerleading coach for five years.

In addition to planning Heartland’s various events, Bobbi also enjoys hosting events and entertaining in her own home. Her other passions include decorating, making crafts, creating centerpieces and uniquely setting the tables for events and banquets, riding with her husband on his Harley, and watching cheerleading. Bobbi’s favorite “cheer team” is Bartow High School – where her daughter is the cheerleading coach. Japanese is the food she enjoys most!

Proverbs 3:5-6 is Bobbi’s favorite passage: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths.”

 

Robin Murphy

Executive Assistant

Robin Murphy, Executive Assistant, became a Heartland staff member in 2008 after years of volunteer service in Heartland’s office. She has been married to her husband, John, since 1988. Prior to working at Heartland, Robin was involved in the banking and real estate industry.

Growing up in a Christian home, Robin became a Christ-follower at a young age. She moved to Florida from Michigan in 1985 and continues to be a big fan and supporter of the University of Michigan football team—Go Blue! She also loves to participate in and watch many other types of sports.

Robin and John have been active Heartland members since the church’s start in 2002. Throughout the years, together they have served in many ministry areas including HeartGroups, Guest Services, leading the college-age students, and offering pre-marriage coaching for couples who are preparing to get married.

In Robin’s free time, she enjoys hiking, visiting family members, traveling, crafting, and decorating and repurposing items for use in her home.

Robin’s desire is to be a true servant not only at Heartland but also in her “everyday encounters” with people. Colossians 3:23 says, “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men …”

 

Tina Gonzales

Administrative Assistant of Finances

A native Floridian born and raised in Winter Haven, Tina Gonzales loves her home and has a heart to see God’s glory fall on this region. She dedicated her life to Christ at a young age and is passionate about seeing people’s lives changed for the better.

Having worked as a preschool teacher for 10+ years, Tina made a huge impact in the lives of many families and children. She has a heart for missions where she has made several mission trips to orphanages across the globe.

In addition to her weekday duties, Tina serves on Heartland’s Media & Tech Team. She is happy to call Heartland her “home church” and is excited to see what God will accomplish through her employment and service here.

 

Sonia Martinez

Database Manager

Sonia Martinez joined our staff full-time in August 2017 to become our Database Manager. Prior to her current role here at Heartland, she has served and worked in various roles within our Children’s, Discipleship and Heartland Español Ministries. She loves serving in our Student Ministry and encouraging our students to strengthen their relationship with the Lord, to be in His Word and share her passion for serving with them.

 

Originally from Brooklyn, NY, Sonia and her family moved from New York to Florida in the summer of 2004. In 2007, they decided to make Winter Haven their permanent home and in early 2010 they found their church home when she and her family started attending Heartland. Sonia and her husband Robert have been married since October 2002 and have a daughter, Gabby. As a family they enjoy spending time together, traveling, going to Disney and trying out new and interesting places to eat wherever they go.
 
Sonia’s favorite bible verse is Deuteronomy 6:6-7: And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.

Waylon Slabach

Assistant to the Children’s Pastor

Waylon and his wife Candice, along with their four children have attended Heartland since 2019. Waylon grew up in the church in Plant City. After graduating from Durant High School, he attended Ouachita Baptist University where he played football and majored in Mass Communications and Biblical Studies. In 2012, he started to pursue a master’s degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. After his first year, he was blessed with the opportunity to serve as a missionary and university teacher in East Asia. While overseas, he completed a Master’s degree in Missiology at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Once returning to the US, Waylon served as University Minister at a church near Oklahoma State University. In 2017, they relocated back home to Florida.

Waylon’s favorite verse is Romans 10:14 “How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?”

 

SMALLVILLE (PRESCHOOL) DIRECTOR

Teesa Howell

Smallville (Preschool) Director

Teesa has been attending Heartland Church since 2014. She began coming to Heartland because of a children’s event that Heartland sponsored and she brought her daughter Madelyn to this event. She loved it so much that they immediately made Heartland their home church.

They joined Heartland in 2015 and Teesa immediately signed up to serve in Heartland kids in the nursery program. She has served there for 8 years, and for the last 2 years she has served as the nursery coordinator. She also serves on the Awana ministry team as the 1st grade Director, and she is the 1st grade Director for VBS.

Teesa’s husband Kirk serves on the safety team, and is the lead once a month. She states that her goal here at Heartland is to bring glory and honor to our Lord and Savior and be a shining light in our children’s ministry.

 

Backstage Director

Blake Gardner

Backstage (Elementary) Director

Blake has been attending Heartland Church since 2008. He immediately got involved in both Children and Student Ministry. While attending Heartland, Blake met his wife Brittany tying the knot in 2019. In August of 2022 they welcomed their daughter Adelay.

While Blake’s official staff positions have changed and his responsibilities have grown through the years, the heart and compassion he has for working and serving in any area remains the same!

Blake’s favorite verse is 2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”

Blake enjoys spending most of his time with his wife and daughter, visiting zoos and parks. Blake’s passion is to continue to teach youth to grow closer to Christ and train them to be good stewards. Blake feels that he has been called to full-time ministry, with a goal of obtaining his masters degree.

 

Facilities

Dawn Anderson

Facilities

Dawn is originally from Wisconsin, but has been living in Florida for 21 years. She is involved in the areas of VBS, decorating, stage design, and wherever needed. Her favorite verse is Psalm 51:10 – “Create in me a pure heart and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”