meet the team

sbtc church planting team

  • Chuy Avila

    Church Planting Associate

    Chuy Avila serves as a Church Planting Associate and catalyst for the DFW area.

    Chuy is tasked with networking with pastors to call out planters from their churches, facilitating training for new planters and supervising current planters.

  • Jason Lankford

    Church Planting Associate

    Jason Lankford serves as a Church Planting Associate and strategist. He is tasked with networking with SBTC churches to develop partnerships. He also works with and trains new church plants.

    Jason has served in various areas of ministry overseas and most recently, as a church planter in Alaska.

    Jason is married to Caroline and they have three boys.

  • Doug Hixson

    Director of Missions & Church Planting

    Doug Hixson serves as the Director of Missions & Church Planting for the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. Doug started with the SBTC in 2017.

    Doug has served in ministry for 28 years as youth pastor, senior pastor and most recently as a church planter in South Dakota. Doug’s church plant in South Dakota also planted three churches in the region.

    Doug is married to Dana and they have two children — Benjamin and Adyson.

  • Carmela Mechling

    Ministry Assistant

    Carmela Mechling serves as a Ministry Assistant.

    Carmela manages the church planter application system, church planter monthly reports, church plant, people-group missionary and intern funding/projections, demographic reports, coordinates church planter orientations and basic trainings.

  • Gayla Harris

    Ministry Assistant

    Gayla Harris serves as a Ministry Assistant.

    Gayla manages Reach Houston, Reach Austin, Reach El Paso, Reach the Rio Grande Valley and other mobilization partnerships, Reach Texas offerings and the annual Church Planter retreat.