Interdependent leadership

At Summit Church we practice what is referred to as an “Interdependent Leadership” model. Simply defined, God gives the gift of leadership to the Church and calls a plurality of elders with complimentary abilities and functions to serve Him collectively to equip God’s people to carry out His purposes in the world (Ephesians 4:11-12). The primary metaphor to describe the New Testament Church is the “body” comprised of individual members serving as differing parts (I Corinthians 12:8-27) with Jesus Christ as the only appointed “Head” of His “body”.

Furthermore we see the model of leadership established in the very nature of our Triune God; (1 Corinthians 12:4-7) three distinct persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) with three distinct roles, acting in complete interdependence with one another. Interdependent Leadership is not only biblically grounded in God’s design for His body, and modeled by His very nature, but it also emphasizes the “heart” that God desires for His leadership (Mathew 20:20-28).

Currently, Summit has seven directing elders, each having a variety of complimentary functions and gifts, who lead together under the authority and headship of Jesus Christ. No one man has more authority than the other, but instead, each mutually submits to and empowers the others to lead where they are most gifted. This provides a high level of accountability, cultivates humility and trust, and gives confidence to the body to know that the elders must collectively be convinced of God’s will for the church before acting.

We realize our structure of not having one primary leader is not normative. However we believe that Interdependent Leadership, collectively leading out God’s mission for His Church, can more completely mobilize and disciple the body to carry out its destiny in the world.



Terry Carlton

Easley Pastor / Elder | Contact


Kyle Estepp

Cherrydale Pastor / Elder | Contact


Josh Keels

Duncan/Lyman/Wellford Pastor / Elder | Contact


Jason Malone

Mauldin Pastor / Elder | Contact


Jim Geyer

Administrative Pastor / Elder | Contact


Kip Kelly

Executive Pastor / Elder | Contact

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Shane McKenzie

Elder | Contact

Remington Brooks

Elder | Contact

Pastors & Staff


Grayson Cato

Worship Ministry Pastor | Contact


Kyle Cayton

Spartanburg Pastor | Contact


Nathan Forrest

Family Discipleship Pastor | Contact


Brandon Gray

Creative Communication Director | Contact


Cam Hill

Cherrydale Pastor | Contact

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Beth Mcdonald

Administrative Assistant | Contact


Campus Directors



  • Doug McDonald - Worship Ministry | Contact

  • Trista Carlton - Summit Kids | Contact

  • Drew Anderson - Student Ministry | Contact

  • Kim Penland - Information Team | Contact