People

National Staff

National Director
Zach Szmara

Zach Szmara is the National Director of Immigrant Connection.  He has been a Department of Justice accredited legal representative since 2014 and has served over 2200 immigrants from 100+ nations in the 7 years he has led his local Immigrant Connection site.  He also serves as the pastor of The Bridge Community Church – a multilingual, multicultural, multiethnic church in Logansport, Indiana.  He has spoken nationally on the topic of immigration, diaspora, multi-cultural/multi-ethnic diversity, and holistic outreach to immigrants and refugees.  He is married to Lyndy, a special education administrator, and they have one son, Isaac.

Director of Development
Adam Lipscomb

Adam Lipscomb is the Director of Development for Immigrant Connection. He has spoken and written about immigration, anti-racism, racial and ethnic diversity and urban ministry. His has served on the boards of three nonprofits, all in the arena of housing and homelessness. He started City Life Church, a multi-cultural/multi-ethnic, core-neighborhood church, in Grand Rapids, MI. He was a co-lead pastor there, alongside his wife, Christy, for 15 years. They have two sons, Jude and Elijah.

Assistant to the Directors
Courtney Peñaranda

Courtney Peñaranda is the Assistant to the Directors and also serves as the Launch Coach for Immigrant Connection. She has worked with international students through both collegiate student affairs and ESL programs. Courtney has also worked as a legal assistant in a local Immigrant Connection office as well as an immigration law firm. She is married to Luigi Peñaranda and they have 3 children, Mateo, Sofia, and Elena.

Board of Directors

Dr. Jo Anne Lyon
Founder
World Hope
David Drury
Chief of Staff
The Wesleyan Church
Adam Estle
VP of Field and Constituencies
National Immigration Forum
Dr. Andrea Summers
Campus Pastor and Dean of Spiritual Formation
Indiana Wesleyan University
Courtney Tudi
Immigration Attorney
Janelle Vernon
Executive Director of Communication and Administration
The Wesleyan Church
Jim Lyon
General Director
Church of God Ministries
Dr. Joanne Solis Walker
Associate Professor of Practical Theology
Northwest Nazarene University
Dr. Luigi Peñaranda
Associate Professor of Global Leadership and Latino/Latina Christian Studies
Wesley Seminary
Omar Haedo
President and CEO
ELAN Insurance Group