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Pastor Mark A. McDaniel

Dr. Mark McDaniel was born on Bitburg Air Base, Germany and raised in a military family. After his father’s retirement from the United States Air Force, Mark was raised in Austin, Texas, graduating from David Crockett High School in 1983. Between his junior and senior year of high school, Mark received his call to full-time Christian service. That November, Mark entered active-duty service with the Air Force as a Chaplain Assistant and served for nine years at Zweibruecken Air Base, Germany and Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota where he was licensed for Christian Ministry. After OPERATION DESERT STORM, Mark left active duty and became an enlisted reserve Chaplain Assistant assigned to Strategic Command at Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska where he served for three years. Mark began his Masters of Divinity at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in the fall of 1995 and graduated in 1998. During this period Mark was commissioned an Air Force Officer and served as a Chaplain Candidate. Upon graduation from Seminary, Mark reappointed as a reserve Chaplain and served until his retirement after 37 years of total service in early 2021. During his time as a chaplain, Mark deployed during OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM to Balad Air Base, Iraq in 2005. He also completed his Doctor of Ministry at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary writing his dissertation on chaplain ministry during combat operations. During this same period Mark taught at the Junior High and High School level from 1999-2001 at Faith Christian High School and at the undergraduate and graduate level at the Arlington Baptist University until 2020. 

Mark has served in various ministry capacities before becoming pastor at New Hope Community Church. He served as Associate Pastor at the Southwest Baptist Church in Austin, Texas from 1995-1996 where he was ordained for Christian Ministry; Worship Leader and Assistant Pastor at the Landmark Baptist Church in Kennedale, Texas from 1996-2005; College Ministry Assistant at the Pleasantview Baptist Church in Arlington Texas from 2005-2006; Interim Pastor at the Life and Liberty Church in Fort Worth, Texas from 2006-2007; and Chairman of the Board for A Place of Hope, Africa from 2007-2016.

Mark is married to the former Brandi Longino from Arlington Texas. They have been married since 1997. In 2006, they adopted two beautiful daughters, Grace and Hannah. They currently reside in Arlington, Texas.

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Associate Pastor for Worship Ben Polley

Ben was born and raised in the DFW area. He grew up in a musical family with 6 younger siblings. His mother, being a professional pianist, started teaching him music at the age of 5 years old. At the age of 6, he gave his life to Christ. When he reached middle school, he started playing the trombone. He proceeded to attain the highest scores in solo competitions each year, as well as making TPSMEA All State Band all four years of highschool. Throughout the rest of his highschool years, he volunteered as a band assistant at TAFA. In 8th grade, he began playing piano for his student worship team. In his sophomore year of highschool he began to help lead student worship at Wedgwood Baptist Church. He would continue to serve there until asked to serve in the worship ministry of Travis Avenue Baptist Church in 2018. After graduating, he began his studies of music composition and worship ministry at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He has played with musical groups, churches, and universities across the DFW area. He is currently playing with Maxwell Hall Jazz Ensemble and serving as the trombonist for the Texas State Guard Brass Quintet. In his spare time Ben enjoys spending time outside, with friends, working on projects, reading, and playing music.

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