Staff and Leadership

Matt Ryniker

Senior Pastor

portrait of Matt

Matt came from San Antonio to Austin to study mathematics at the University of Texas. Matt taught high school math for AISD until he became a full-time pastor at Hope Chapel in 2010. He earned a Masters in Biblical Studies from Reformed Theological Seminary. His interests are Biblical languages and sparring at Lions Krav Maga. He and his wife Mandy have five kids and are an active foster family.

Evan Ott

Assistant Pastor

portrait of Evan

Evan arrived in Austin in 2011 when he started his freshman year at UT Austin. A native of Dallas, he grew up in the United Methodist Church and grew serious about his faith while studying physics and computer science in college. In early 2017, he and then-girlfriend Melody visited Hope Chapel and quickly knew that this is where they wanted to stay. They started serving the Sr. High later that year, got married in 2018, and, in 2019, Evan stepped into his current role discipling Hope’s soon-to-be adults. Evan became Assistant Pastor in 2021, and completed his PhD in statistics at UT Austin in 2022.

Wes Neely

Assistant Pastor/Middle School and Senior High Youth Minister

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Wes was born in 1994 and raised in Austin. He grew up in a small Bible church in South Austin until he and his wife, Bethany, moved to Hope Chapel in 2018. Wes started working with the middle schoolers in 2019. He enjoys his time playing any and all sorts of games and coming up with new adventures for the middle schoolers to participate in.

Andy Combs

Director of Worship Ministries

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Andy was born and raised in Austin, Texas and has been connected to Hope Chapel worship since Debbie Dorman encouraged him to play at church in Junior High.

Andy says that the worship that goes out from Hope Chapel is precious to the Lord and an honor to help facilitate!

Andy and his wife Sarah operate a lawn and landscape service in South Austin where they raise their 5 kids and 12 chickens.

Hala Tompkins

Director of Children's Ministries

portrait of Hala

Hala El-Swaify Tompkins was born to an Egyptian dad and an American mom in Honolulu, Hawaii where she grew up on the most beautiful beaches in the world. She became a Christian when she was 13 and has never looked back. She and her husband Glenn have four wonderful sons, three amazing daughters-in-law, five beautiful granddaughters and two grandsons who are the joy of their lives. Hala graduated from UT Austin and has lived all over the world. She enjoys teaching children and coaching parents at Hope Chapel to raise their children to know and love the Lord Jesus.

Cecilia Proeger

Global Operations Pastor

portrait of Ceci

Cecilia Proeger has 3 beautiful kids and 1 amazing husband. They have been on an adventure with Jesus since their wedding day in 2002, which has taken them to live in California for one brief year, and Cape Town, South Africa for 3.5 years. Now back in Texas, God is using Cecilia to encourage others to go to the ends of the earth!

Mandy Ryniker

Coordinator of Foster Adoptive Ministries (FAM)

portrait of Mandy

Mandy joined Hope Chapel in 2005 where in a college Bible study she met Matt Ryniker & the rest is history! She works part time as a Labor & Delivery Nurse and is a full time mom to her five kids. Matt & Mandy have been licensed foster parents since 2019. One of Mandy’s greatest desires is to see Christ glorified through families.

As Foster Adoptive Ministry Coordinator, Mandy is committed to encouraging and equipping Christ’s church to care for the orphan & for vulnerable families in our community.

Joe Friedman

Men's Ministry Director

portrait of Joe

Joe is a native of Shreveport, LA. He graduated Jesuit High School, and studied for two years at the University of Southwestern Louisiana in Lafayette.  In 1974 he felt a call to join a professional Christian drama ministry called the Covenant Players. He married his wife Nance in 1978 while ministering in the UK and Ireland. Their travels with the Covenant Players took them all over the world: Joe served in Guatemala and Mexico, and together they travelled the lower 48 United States, Canada and Western Europe.  After 35 years with the Covenant Players, Joe became a lay pastor in the United Methodist Church, serving two small churches in Portland, OR from 2005 to 2007. At that point, God moved him and Nance back to France where he served as a pastor for seven years. In January 2014, he and Nance moved back to Austin, TX, and joined Hope Chapel at that time.  Joe was ordained at Hope Chapel in summer 2019, having served the congregation in many different roles since 2014. Joe and Nance have a daughter, Hannah Joy, who lives in New York with her husband Alex and their son Jacob.

Lisette Espinosa

Women's Ministry Director

portrait of Lisette

Lisette is almost a native Texan. Born in NY but raised in and around ATX since age 5, she considers beautiful ATX her home. You might catch her talking about the good ole days when Round Rock and Cedar Park were “out of town.” She has been married to her handsome husband since 2005 and continues to enjoy the adventure. In 2010 they began their journey into parenthood and now have 2 wonderful children who remind them daily to be selfless. Lisette has passion to see women grow in their relationship with Christ and grow in inter-generational relationships with one another. She believes that God loves to see his daughters rally together in support of one another to further his kingdom.

Cosmo Raines

Bible Study Fellowship Group Leader

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Cosmo is a Serial Inventor and Entrepreneur who founded Spirit Gear LLC in 1996 and Hyper Wear Inc. in 2006. Cosmo has worked in various youth ministry roles in multiple churches over the years, but college students are close to his heart, as it was while in college that he encountered the Lord in new and amazing ways with the help of great leadership.  Cosmo hopes that the Lord will imbue him with the same abilities to challenge and encourage a new generation of Jesus-lovers.

Lindsie Harlan

Guest Welcome Director

portrait of Lindsie
Lindsie was born and raised in Austin, Texas. She’s a fifth generation Austinite! She graduated from A.N. McCallum High School in 2007, and from Lauterstein-Conway Massage School and Clinic in 2013. After a very long journey away from God, she now walks with Him and believes in the power of Jesus and in being a vessel of light and offering healing touch to people. Lindsie has been an active member of Hope Chapel since 2018.

Binyam Gebrehanna

Taizé Service Leader

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Binyam Gebrehanna is originally from Ethiopia, and came to the United States about 15 years ago. In 2014, he became a US citizen, and he also had the opportunity to attend college. He graduated from the Austin Graduate School of Theology in 2016 (which is now Lipscomb University). Currently, he attends Lipscomb University in the MDiv program. He started coming to Hope Chapel over ten years ago.