staff briefs

Get to know some of the people that serve at Desperation Church.

  • Jon petersen

    Pastor of Ministries & Business Administration

    Jon has been in ministry since 1993 and came on staff here at Desperation Church in July, 2008. At DC, he is the Pastor of Ministries and Business Administration. His main responsibilities are to manage most of the ministries and volunteers of the church. He also oversees various other daily operations, events and ministries, and works alongside DC's Administrative Board.

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  • Bil Brown

    Lead Pastor & Intergalactic Superhero

    Bil has been with Desperation Church from its very beginning in 1995 and served on the admin board, elder board and in many other roles and areas as a volunteer. Bil served on staff as the Worship/Creativity Pastor for 7 years before becoming DC’s Lead Pastor in 2014.

    He believes that every person is uniquely made with a God-given purpose for their lives. Bil has a passion for equipping, connecting, and empowering others to realize their full potential as servants in God's Kingdom. He teaches from a Hebraic perspective and seeks to help others learn and to better understand the depth of God’s word and how it connects with the lives of every follower of Jesus.

    Bil likes to have fun and tries to bring the creativity and wonder of God into all aspects of his life.

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  • Valerie Brown

    Church Secretary & Office Administrator

    Valerie has been a part of the Desperation Church family since the very beginning. She has served on the Admin Board, worked in kid’s ministries and currently serves on the Women’s Council. Valerie is the church’s secretary and office administrator. She came on staff in September of 2011 and is the first point of contact when a person calls or stops by the church office.

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    DC Student Ministries Administrator

    People look up to Zach – partly because he’s taller than most of us – but also because he is passionate about Jesus and people. He believes community is the key to discipleship and that’s why you’ll always find him connecting and serving with others. When he’s not hanging with our students at The Point, Zach is usually hanging with his wife Beth and their 4 kidlets or dreaming up ways to make musical noises.



    DC Children's Ministry Administrator

    Beth loves kids. How do we know? She has her own set of 4! Beth’s love for children, however, goes far beyond her own tribe. She is passionate about helping all children discover who God created them to be, and being able to encourage and teach them along their journeys. She does this through scheduling, training and coordinating the hub of activity known as The DC Kid’s Ministry. When Beth isn’t working with kids, she helps her husband Zach with Student Ministries at The Point.


  • Ashley hurlbert

    Church Treasurer

    Ashley is Desperation Church’s Treasurer. She works hard to keep everything organized in the financial department. When she’s not balancing books, she’s pouring into the lives of teenagers as a youth ministry volunteer with her husband Josh.



Bil Brown

Lead Pastor & Intergalactic Superhero

Pastor Bil Brown never thought in a million years that he would be called “Pastor.” He grew up as one of 8 kids in a Christian home full of musicians. He always imagined himself playing music, making artwork, or coming up with crazy ways to make people happy (perhaps as a Radio DJ, toy maker or the guy that delivers the lottery checks) little did he know that God’s plan was to combine all of these things into the coolest job ever.

Bil got his degree in Art from William Jewell College. After graduating in 1994, he worked for some of the top web design companies in Kansas City on accounts for Lee Jeans, Sprint and Disney. He’s also done freelance design work for bands like P.O.D. and Blindside. (And by the way, they are for real and very nice guys).

Bil has also played in a few bands along the way starting on bass with his family’s country gospel band Sweet Spirit. During college he founded DigHayZoose with some friends to play music about God that they liked because there wasn’t much out there at the time. He’s always been a behind the scenes guy when it came to music. He played bass (and occasionally drums) for years on the worship team at Desperation Church before being asked to lead in an emergency. Slowly God began to work and give him opportunities to lead after that.

When he’s not working, creating or drawing on something, Bil hangs out with his lovely wife Valerie and their 4 awesome kidlets (Isaac, Isabelle, Lily and Olivia) He says: “I am lucky enough to live with and be loved by the coolest person I've ever met. Somehow I tricked her into marrying me. My kids amaze me all the time and remind me of how blessed I am to have them in my life. They are the best examples of passion, energy, excitement and wonder.”

Bil’s passion is helping others awaken to the unique gifts and creativity that God has placed inside of them. If you hang around him long enough, you'll probably hear him talk about how "everything is worship", "the creativity that God placed in each of us" or that "God made us for love." In fact, he's all about LOVE and tries to practice at it whenever he can. His goal is to become the best lover of God, husband, father, pastor of peoples and creative worshipper he can be. This will be considered a success when he is the same guy every place he goes, whether alone, at home with family or with others. He has been described as a "hug dealer" and is a big believer in the power of hugs.

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jon petersen

Pastor of Ministries & Business Administration

Jon is a Missouri transplant from the state of Texas. He graduated from Evangel University in Springfield, MO in 1991 with a degree in History and Secondary Education. After teaching school for a short time at an alternative school, he felt a calling to youth ministry. He has been in ministry since 1993 as a youth pastor, young adult pastor and associate pastor of several churches in Texas and here in Kansas City. The Petersen family has been attending Desperation Church since January, 2006 and Jon came on staff in July, 2008. He and his wife Stacey have two awesome kids, Ayanna and Jeriah. Stacey grew up in the Kansas City area and works for Southwest Airlines. Jon loves hanging out with his awesome family, cheering for the Minnesota Vikings and rocking out to 80's Christian hard rock group, Stryper.

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