The small staff team (assisted by some key volunteers) help to facilitate the activities of the network. However network members are actively involved in planning of most events and forums.
John Baxter-Brown, or JBB as he is usually known, has previously worked as consultant to the World Council of Churches (on evangelism), World Vision International (on Church Partnerships) and Compassion International (on children and youth in mission). In addition to his role with Global Connections, he serves as Senior Advisor in Evangelism for the Theological Commission of the World Evangelical Alliance and occasionally lectures in mission and evangelism at universities and colleges. Throughout his ministry, JBB has worked in evangelism, youth and children’s work, theological education and training, and ecumenism, at local church through to global levels. He has edited and authored numerous books, chapters, journals and articles. He is married with two teenage daughters and two dogs and lives in Wiltshire.
Born and raised a proud Yorkshireman, Andy moved down to Coventry in 1996 to study Physiotherapy at university, where two of the most remarkable and wonderful things happened. First and foremost, he came to know God in a personal way and then he met his now wife Gillian. In the 21 years they have been married, God has blessed Andy and Gillian with two wonderful boys. His move to Global Connections comes after working in the NHS for the last 21 years, initially as a physio and, for the last 12 years, in operational management and leadership. In his downtime, Andy enjoys going to the gym, playing bass, reading and spending time at his allotment or just generally being outside and active with his family.
Originally from Belfast, Jo has worked among the Maasai in Kenya and in London with AIM International as their Youth & Student worker. She now lives in Birmingham and is a member of St. John’s Church, Harborne. She has been happily married to Mark since September 2006 and has become a student of football and cricket as a result. Both Jo and Mark enjoy keeping fit and eating out and are also closely involved with Isubilo, an HIV & AIDS ministry based in Zambia. They also run City Pastors in Birmingham, an inter-church project serving the night-time economy. Jo is responsible for production of CV’s major publications, involvement in some of the major UK Christian events and supporting joint mission agency initiatives including GOfest, which she Chairs. She is also Chair of the Short-Term Mission Forum and ECM Britain (from Dec 14) and is a governor of Redcliffe College.
Sandy joined the staff of Global Connections in January 2009, having returned from five years at St. Andrew's School Turi in Kenya. Prior to this she worked in the voluntary sector in the UK - with special interest in good practice in the management of volunteers - and was on the administrative staff of IFES and churches in Exeter and Warwick. Sandy's role at Global Connections is to coordinate much of the vocational activities, resources and services of Christian Vocations, as well as overseeing HR, and involvement with the International HR, TCK, and Member Care Forums. As a member of Myton Church in Warwick she is involved with young adults and women’s ministry. Sandy is married to Andrew and they have three adult sons. Sandy loves walking, reading, watching films, singing in a local choir, and live performances of Shakespeare plays.
Based in Belfast Tim takes the lead in promoting and developing the work of MAP (Mission Action Partnership), a partnership of mission agencies and churches in Northern Ireland. Before becoming MAP Coordinator Tim worked in local government for 11 years. He has always been passionate about mission and has a background of involvement in mission activities as a member of Emmanuel Church in Lurgan. Tim is married to Andrea and they have three young sons. He enjoys travelling, reading, music, movies and most sports – he is big a Man United fan!
Jill is originally from Scotland but has lived in Northern Ireland for the past 20 years. She spent 8 years working as a partner in mission with the Presbyterian Church of East Africa in Kenya, teaching, running a library and providing hospitality. She is married to Uel and has three children, born in Kenya, and one grandchild. Jill has spent the last 12 years working for EMBRACE NI, encouraging local churches to engage with migrant people. She is interested in exploring new expressions of mission and in her free time enjoys family, fresh air, conversations over coffee, reading and creative writing.
Eileen has recently joined Global Connections as PA to the Chief Operating Officer, having worked for various trade associations and professional institutes, including most recently the Association of Christian Counsellors. Eileen has attended Coventry Vineyard since 2009, serving in the catering team and various children’s work, and, more recently, a local parish church that works with displaced refugees. Her interests include arts and crafts, and she also sings in a ladies’ barbershop chorus. She is married and has two adult children.
After an encounter with God at the age of 16, Annie later went on to study a degree in Theology at The University of Nottingham where she developed a passion for mission. Having spent some time working as a ballet teacher in India, Annie returned to the UK and joined Global Connections as PA to the Operations Director in 2014, stepping into the role of Mission in the UK Coordinator later in 2018. Annie is the Worship Director for her local church and together with her husband Sam she serves as a Key Leader. Together they share a heart for the Indian community and lead short-term mission trips overseas. Annie’s other loves include exercise, books, a good steak, the outdoors, and a flat white.
After a few years of globe-trotting and various jobs, Sophia moved from her hometown Reading in 2014 to put her passion into practice studying sport at Coventry University. There she attended Hillfields Church Coventry where her love for God and ministry grew. After graduating she worked full-time for the church for two years and is still there three days a week, where her work involves the pastoral care of teenagers and students. Sophia joined the Global Connections team part-time in 2019 and wants to carry on serving God in full-time ministry, wherever that will be. She continues to pursue her love of sports and travelling and spends much of her free time writing fiction, baking brownies and playing the piano.
Kate spent her teenage years helping out at events for the short-term mission charity that her father ran. Her heart for the developing world grew throughout this time and she signed up to spend part of her gap year working in an orphanage in Uganda. After graduating university, Kate landed her first marketing job working for an international children’s charity. At the same time Kate also worked for her local church and co-presented on a Christian community radio station. Kate has since worked for a global company and it was the marketing experience she gained here that prepared her with the skills she needed for her role at Global Connections, a position she started in September 2019. Outside of work Kate leads the Media Team and is a Key Leader at her local church. She and her husband Steve also look after trainee guide dogs in the evenings and at weekends.
Born and raised in London, Raphene moved to Coventry in 2015 to study at the University of Warwick, where she graduated with a BA in Politics and International Studies in 2019. She has since embarked on a year out in ministry, and currently serves as an intern at her church in Leamington Spa. There she is involved in various areas of church life including, amongst other things, serving in the student’s, children’s and women’s ministries, and providing administrative support as part of the staff team. Raphene joined Global Connections in October 2019 as an Administration Assistant, where she provides support in the ministry of Christian Vocations. In her spare time, Raphene enjoys walking and cycling in rural settings, getting stuck into a good TV series, and cooking (and eating) new recipes with friends and family.