Meet our leadership
Got questions for the lead team at Compassion Germantown? Contact us here.
Derrick Gardner - Lead Pastor
Derrick Gardner, born in Africa to missionary parents, graduated high school in NASCAR country, Kannapolis NC. Attended college in Royston Georgia, and served in the USAF for 8 years, 5 of those in Alaska. Pastored in SC and TN for close to 30 years. And if you think than was enough of a journey, ministry has taken him to Hawaii, Mexico, Costa Rica, Dominque Republic, and did we mention India and many more! He married a South Carolina girl, ‘because they are the best in the world', has a son and daughter, and is blessed to have 4 gorgeous grand-daughters. And how did all this happen? Because he learned early
on . . .
“That prayer is not preparation for the battle…prayer is the battle.” - Derrick Gardner
Sam Norfleet - Worship Director
Sam Norfleet was born in San Luis Obispo California, moved east to a small town called Delta Colorado during High School years and there discovered his passion to lead and minister through Worship Music. He attended college at Evangel University and graduated with his Bachelors in Music Technology in 2013. While in school, he led worship for Evangel’s chapels as well as volunteering at local churches, youth groups and special prayer/worship events. His wife Heidi and 2 year-old son Peter, moved to Tennessee to be part of Compassion Germantown in the spring of 2019 and Heidi will be teaching Mathematics at Briarcrest Christian School starting in the fall.
Hobbies: writing, recording and listening to music, cooking, carpentry, building guitar pedals.
"Music is the language of the soul, but pizza is the fuel for the stomach." - Sam Norfleet
Janice Warren - Kids Director
Janice Warren grew up in Pennsylvania in a close knit Mennonite community. She was one of 11 children. She has lived in Maryland, Texas and now Tennessee. Janice is married to Ron. She has three sons, (Jon, Jeff and Chris) three daughter-in-laws, (Tiffany, Kiri and Tanja) and four grandchildren (Joshua, Lucas, Julia and Aiden). While serving on staff at Padre Island Baptist Church and attending Howard Payne University Janice was called to Children’s Ministry. She has been serving in Children’s Ministry for 20+ years. Her favorite thing to do to relax is Spin classes at the Y.
"Kids are the best part of my job!" - Janice Warren
Gwyn Harper - Operations Director
Gwyn Harper was born in Georgia, but raised in Tennessee. In 2015, she began interning for Compassion Church at the Germantown location and not long after was hired in March of 2016. In continuing to follow the plans God has for her on Leap Year of 2020 she got married to a wonderful man Justin. They have two wonderful cats, Little John and Tigger! Hobbies: Georgia Bulldog and Memphis Redbirds fanatic, wanderlust to broken countries that need Jesus.
"Ice Cream is Cheaper than Therapy" - Gwyn Johnson
John Brancato - cGroup/Facility Director
John Brancato was born in Pennsylvania but grew up in Mexico City, Mexico. He returned to the United States to attend Loyola University in New Orleans, LA. After 4 years in the US Army, he spent 13 years in the corporate world and then 12 years as a business owner. After a few years of business consulting John found his real passion of helping and ministering to men for God’s kingdom purposes. John moved from Fort Worth, Texas in 2019 with his wife Lisa. They have 6 adult children and one grandchild. In their “spare time” they are building their homestead, Covenant Hill, in North Mississippi. John is also very active at the Hope center. A facility for men dedicated to their recovery and discipleship in Jesus Christ. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord God is with you wherever you go. “- God (Josua 1:9 NKJV)
Jennifer Carruego Connections Director
Jennifer Carruego - Born in Atlanta Georgia but raised in Puerto Rico. Married to Chris for 18 years. His family is from Argentina. Have 2 kids Christian and Sebastian Have been living in Tennessee since 2015 and have been part of the church since then. From the first day that we visited the church we have always felt like family. One of my passions in life is to make sure that everyone that walks through the doors of the church feels the same and finds a connection and their purpose through Christ. Its incredible to witness how God can transform lives! Hobbies: soccer and karate mom! Love running around with the boy's extra curriculum activities! Favorite bible verse: "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the lord, plans of welfare and not for evil" Jeremiah 29:11