Minuteman Disaster Response is driven by a highly talented group of leaders who selflessly give of themselves to serve communities impacted by disasters. This group of individuals is subject matter experts in their respective areas, and we are grateful to have their commitment to our organization.
– Staff –
MATT PAYNEExecutive Director - Matt got involved with Minuteman because he felt a need to serve others in their time of need while building relationships with like-minded individuals in an atmosphere of service and adventure. Some of the most rewarding experiences he’s had on deployment have come from listening to a survivor's story, learning about them as a person, and allowing the opportunity to begin the healing process. Matt believes if looking for a place to volunteer your time to serve those impacted by natural disaster, Minuteman is a great place to do it.
The training is top-notch and the people who serve are some of the best around.Matt and his wife Kari have one daughter, Anna, and one son, Jared. When not serving with Minuteman he likes to spend time riding bikes, fishing and getting involved with mission work in Mexico. Contact
ERIC BURKESDirector of Operations - Eric learned about Minuteman’s mission during a demonstration at a local church. When he learned the quality training they provided, he knew it was the right organization for him. Eric says Minuteman is designed for people who have a desire to serve others. He knows this first-hand from his deployment to Kingsland, Texas, where helped people return to their homes following the severe flooding there.
“Minuteman offers a knowledgeable and structured environment in which anyone can make a difference.”Eric is a husband and father of two, and home inspector by trade. He and his family enjoy the great outdoors, riding four-wheelers, and skiing whenever they can. Contact
Director of Operations
TIMOTHY ADAMSDirector of Member Success - Timothy first became involved with Minuteman after creating a short documentary about the organization in college in 2018. After finishing college, Timothy joined as a volunteer shortly after focusing on capturing the devastation and coming together of volunteers through photography and videography.
“Minuteman is changing lives in the wake of destruction. Join up and get to work!.”Timothy is married, to his wife Elizabeth, and spends his free time cooking, working at his church as an audio engineer, and volunteering online as a video editor. Contact
Director of Member Success
CARLA EVERETTAdministrative Assistant - Carla's husband, Scott, had been involved with MDR for years before she joined the team. After experiencing the excellent work that Minuteman does for those in need, Carla joined the Gala Committee and soon after, became a part of the staff team as an Administrative Assistant.
“It truly is more blessed to give than receive and so satisfying to serve with a community of people doing something for the greater good.”Carla is a mom to 3 kids, with 2 sons in college and her daughter in high school. She enjoys time with her family and dogs, as we ll as exercising and being outdoors. Contact
– Leadership Team –
Founding Member - Paul is a founder of Minuteman, and has remained a highly active member since its inception. While delivering donated goods to Joplin following the 2011 tornado there, he was moved by the struggles suffered by victims and the high demands encountered by first responders. He recognized there was room for prepared volunteers to help in the immediate hours following such disasters. He has seen the dreams of Minuteman fulfilled and exceeded, witnessing strong growth in the team’s membership and breadth of capabilities. Asked why other people should participate with Minuteman, his reply is simple and direct:
“It is very rewarding to help those in need.”That’s the core of the opportunity Minuteman presents and provides. Paul has been involved in Missions ministry for 40 years. He also started a commercial construction company that is 40-years strong, and now run by one of his sons. He sees the parallel successes of those endeavors as no mere coincidence. Paul is blessed by his vivacious wife, Judy, and plenty of grandchildren. Contact
ANDREW MEAIRSInterim Dir. of Response Operations Member Since 2017 - Andrew was introduced to Minuteman through a conversation with a team member he met at church. With a background in both military and law enforcement, Andrew already had a strong history of service. Minuteman provides him an opportunity to satisfy that drive while maintaining his full-time job. He says his reward is helping ‘bring life’ back to a community that has suffered devastation.
“I was extremely impressed with the attitudes of the volunteers and their deep desire to do whatever possible to bring comfort to those in need using their different skill sets.”Andrew owns a property inspection business and enjoys spending his free time with family at the lake. Contact
Interim Director of Response Operations
KEVIN MECHLERDirector of Relief Operations
Member Since 2017 - Kevin believes strongly in putting compassion into action. He was first drawn to Minuteman because, when disasters occur, Minuteman presented an opportunity to give more than money alone; it offered him a way to put his hands and abilities to use. Today, he remains an active member because he sees how Minuteman, working at disaster sites, makes a meaningful difference in the lives of those in need.
“The members I first met and the ones I’ve served with all have a ‘take-care-of-the-customer-first’ mentality. We get it done!”He also appreciates the varying levels of participation and training from which volunteers may choose, accommodating the ‘weekend warriors’ as well as those who wish to train with Minuteman in specialized disciplines. Kevin cherishes his roles as husband and father. He’s grateful for his career as a pilot, and enjoys physical exercise such as mountain biking, skiing, SCUBA and with persuasion, golf. Contact
Director of Relief Operations
JEFF SPELMANDeputy Director of Relief Operations
Member Since 2018 - With a passion to serve others in the aftermath of a disaster, Minuteman provided Jeff with an outlet to volunteer. For Jeff, it has been a pleasure working with a growing organization that holds high standards of professionalism while also building deep, trusting relationships with other team members. The most rewarding experience for Jeff has been witnessing the positive impact of his service on those who have been affected by natural disasters. Scott believes Minuteman is the right organization for any individual looking for something truly unique, exciting, and hands-on.
If you have a heart for service and do not mind getting a little dirty, stepping into the gap to provide what others cannot or will not is following the Golden Rule. .Contact
Deputy Director of Relief Operations
RYAN CHAPMANLogistics Coordinator
Member Since 2014 - Ryan knew he wanted to be part of something bigger than himself, and after meeting so many individuals who have been affected by natural disaster, he eventually found Minuteman. Through MDR, Ryan has formed deeply meaningful relationships and is proud of the way he and his team members come together to bring hope and love to those affected by natural disaster. Through MDR, Ryan is proud of how they’ve been able to change and impact lives.
The heart to serve always shines through with each and everyone associated with MDR.Ryan is a Construction Manager for a large home builder in the DFW. He is married with a wife and two little ones, aged 1 and 5. Ryan is a former baseball player and coach, as well as an avid craftsman. Contact
Church Partnership Member Since 2017 Having lived through a tornado in 1999 and participated in relief efforts through church groups in years after, Russell wanted to get involved with a group that was organized and had the same vision that he did in serving those affected by disasters. The most rewarding experience he’s had was serving during the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, and seeing how truly grateful the people were.
Our organization puts people in the most effective position to serve those affected by disasters through training, equipment and excellent leadership.Russell is the Area Sales Manager/Loan Officer for Bay Equity Home Loans in Frisco, Texas. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, reading, and being near the water. Contact
Sawyer Coordinator Member Since 2019 - Brian was introduced to Minuteman by a fellow member and friend in 2019, and immediately joined. Shortly there after in 2020, Brian deployed with a team to West Monroe, LA in response to the devastating Easter Sunday Tornados. He reflects back on his first deployment by telling others that at the end of a hard day’s work, the impact left on the survivors' lives is extremely rewarding.
This is a great place to use ones' abilities to help others.Brian has been married for over 20 years, with 4 children, and enjoys woodworking to build sets for his children's stage productions. Contact
Member Since 2011 - Grateful for being one of the four men who founded Minuteman after responding to Joplin, Missouri’s EF5 tornado, Michael found an avenue to express his passion to serve those affected by disasters. For Michael, the training offered by Minuteman is not only in-depth and professional, but filled with heart, compassion and desire to effectively deploy in the midst of crisis.
“We offer an incredible “on-ramp” training for any individual -- even with little or no experience.“Michael is honored to serve as the Pastor of his local church in McKinney, Texas. He also enjoys cycling, reading, mission trips to Mexico, and Friday night pizza and movies with his wife and three children. Contact
MARK NAMEYMembership Coordinator
Member Since 2017 - After retirement, Mark had his sights set on becoming an EMT. However when he discovered MDR, he found a more relaxed, flexible way to provide support to those in need. Mark enjoys every opportunity to talk and pray with those affected by natural disaster. Working with MDR has provided Mark with an immense personal satisfaction that comes from giving back and and helping others.
MDR will challenge you in learning a variety of emergency response techniques.Mark has been married for 31 years and has two beautiful daughters. He is a retired electrical engineer after 33 years working for Raytheon in the field of electro-optical sensors development. He is also the Outreach Director for over 25 ministries at St. Gabriel the Archangel Catholic Community. Contact
STAN SHERWOODField Communications Coordinator
Member Since 2016 - Stan learned of Minuteman Disaster Response while his church was looking for ways to aid those suffering after a natural disaster. After attending a meeting and learning more about MDR, the concept of the rapid response team was especially appealing to him. From the start, joining MDR has been a very rewarding opportunity for Stan to make a difference in the lives of natural disaster victims, and even more rewarding to aid the first responders and families that have suffered in the same disaster.
MDR is a great team of God-loving people who I'm honored to work with.When not assisting with Minuteman, Stan enjoys spending time with his wife or working at the company he’s co-owned for more than 23 years. Stan has two married sons and a daughter who's soon to be married. Contact
Field Communications Coordinator
WILLIAM "BILL" SOMMERSMaintenance Coordinator
Member Since 2017 - After retiring from the McKinney Post Office, Bill was looking for a way to "pay it back" with the free time he had on his hands. When he learned about Minuteman Disaster Response he thought that it would be a perfect fit for him. Bill recounted his early days with MDR by saying that the group is full of incredible individuals that come together for a common goal.
It is difficult to describe the feeling of satisfaction that I get after helping families that have been traumatized by disasters. Although we can’t solve all of their problems, we definitely make a difference.Bill leads the maintenance team for MDR, but when he's not fixing, repairing, or jerry-rigging equipment he's busy raising his dwarf goats with his wife Alisha, of 27 years. Contact
sUAS Coordinator Member Since 2017 - Michael has been a drone enthusiast as long as he can recall, but even with his fascination and impressive skills, he always wanted to use his knowledge for a better cause. After teaching several drone courses inside of MDR, Michael took the position of the sUAS Coordinator.
“MDR is truly a great organization with many like-minded people who have a passion for helping people.”Michael, a Cisco Systems employee, spends his time biking, hiking, camping, and honey-do's/DIY projects for his wife around the house. He is the proud father of his son, who is an Eagle Scout, and daughter, an SFA graduate and talented voalist. Contact
BILL WERNERGear Coordinator Member Since 2017 - Bill retired from Texas Instruments as an Electrical Engineer, and was able to substantially increase his level of participation in several community service organizations, providing support for those that have likely just experienced the most devastating day of their lives.
MDR is a well-rounded group of highly motivated volunteers with an exceptional dedication to helping others.Bill spends his free time pursuing his interests in amateur radio, mountain climbing, marine aquariums and drone operations. Contact
– District Coordinators –
GREG STORYFt. Worth, TX District Coordinator - Greg was introduced to Minuteman via his fellow church friends who were longstanding members of the organization, and was amazed by the desire of strangers to join together and help those in need. Being a retired meteorologist, Greg found that serving in the OPS Center would be monumental to the team's success in storm tracking.
“We certainly need more volunteers, and I look forward to working along side you. And trust me, the work Minuteman does is rewarding. The gratitude shown by those we assist is not soon forgotten.”Greg spends his free time with his wife, Dawn, three children, and three grandchildren. He regularly volunteers at his local church and is an avid Texas Rangers Fan. Contact
Ft. Worth, TX District Coordinator
JAMES KENNEDYDenton, TX District Coordinator - James had always wanted to find a way to serve others in his area when he stumbled across MDR. Being able to volunteer and be amongst nature while doing so was a huge reason for him joining the team. He says that being amongst like-minded individuals has been a huge reward to his experience.
“These are people who have had their lives turned upside down and can see no way to get things right side up again, then we show up and the gratitude and the love in their eyes are worth every bit of stink and sweat and pain we might have to put up with.”Contact
Denton, TX District Coordinator
JASON HEIMMcKinney, TX District Coordinator - After traveling to Little Axe, OK, in 2013 to help with tornado cleanup, Jason felt God was calling him to partake in assisting others in a bigger way. Soon after, he joined Minuteman and quickly became a Rapid Response Team Member.
“In 1 Peter 4:10 we are told 'As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace….'”Jason is a Senior Inside Salesmen for Wave Electronics, who spends his days away from work with his wife or playing golf and mountain biking. Contact
McKinney, TX District Coordinator
KRISTI COOPERDallas, TX District Coordinator - Kristi joined MDR in 2017 through her church, Gateway, after searching for ways to serve her community. She notes how rewarding it is to be the hands and feet of Christ, deploying in times of need.
“MDR is very organized, offers top-notch training, is well run, and is a respected community partner.”Kristi is a Church Success Partner with Ministry Brands and spends her free time at Lake Texoma with her husband, two children, and one grandchild. Contact
Dallas, TX District Coordinator
RANDY ROGANBirmingham, AL District Coordinator - Randy became a member of Minuteman after volunteering through his local church. After getting home from his trip, he immediately became a member and began his training. He has often said that the most rewarding experience as a team member is to encourage and pray with homeowners who have often lost everything.
“We go to help and encourage those in great need, but usually we are the ones who get the blessing as we work with these individuals and families.”Randy works with technology for Public Sectors but spends most of his time with his true passion; being a worship team leader at his church. Contact
Birmingham, AL District Coordinator
WILLIAM (W.A.) DEVORETulsa, OK District Coordinator - W.A. joined the Minuteman team in 2019 after witnessing first-hand disaster strike and the flood of volunteers that had come to assist residents impacted. Quickly following his joining of the organization, W.A. was placed as the District Coordinator for Tulsa, OK.
“Anyone that wants to help people and enjoys working with other volunteers should join MDR”W.A. is retired from the oil industry and enjoys spending time with his wife, Arlynaa, and family. Contact
Tulsa, OK District Coordinator