Pastor Dave was born in Chicago, Illinois, the youngest of four children. He attended public high school in the Chicago suburbs and attended university on an athletic scholarship. He graduated from Valparaiso University in Indiana where he was awarded a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. After University, he enlisted in the United States Army and he served in Viet Nam during the war; he received eight decorations for his service including the Bronze Star and the Army Commendation Medal.
After the Army, he attended the University of Arizona where he was awarded a Juris Doctorate. He later attended Northwestern University where he was awarded the degree of Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management. He practiced law in Chicago for many years as a partner in several law firms, including his own. His practice included litigation, business law, estate planning, and tax law. He has had several articles and a book published on an array of diverse subjects such as legal medicine, theology, and taxation.
On Mother’s Day, 1994, having heard the Gospel clearly presented, Pastor Dave prayed to receive Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. Immediately thereafter, he became involved in part-time ministry --- preaching and teaching at nursing homes, truck stops, jails, rescue missions, and churches. Following God’s call to pursue full time ministry, he enrolled at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, where he studied for over two years. He later completed additional coursework toward a Doctor of Ministry degree at Gordon-Conwell Seminary in Massachusetts.
In 1998, he accepted a call to become Senior Pastor and Elder of the Evangelical Free Church of China --- International Church in Hong Kong (“EFCC”). Pastor Dave served at EFCC for over ten years, during which time he became the first non-Chinese Pastor to be ordained in the Evangelical Free Church of China in its 120 year history.
As Senior Pastor at EFCC, he learned how to direct ministry in the context of an international church in Hong Kong. While there he also planned and helped implement an extensive mission program that involved members in proclaiming the Gospel in Hong Kong and eleven different countries in Asia.
Pastor Dave and his family returned to the United States in 2008. For the next ten years he practiced law full time and did ministry work part-time, including preaching, teaching, and counselling homeless men and women at the Pacific Garden Mission in Chicago. Pastor Dave and his wife are members of College Church in Wheaton, Illinois.
Pastor Dave returned to Hong Kong in July, 2018, and since then has been serving as Senior Pastor and Elder of Evangelical Community Church. Pastor Dave’s Sunday sermons are broadcast twice a week on television in Russia, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East under the auspices of Trinity Broadcasting Network --- Russia.
Pastor Dave’s preaching, teaching, and television ministries share a common objective, and that objective is set forth in what he considers to be his “job description”: (2 Timothy 4: 1 – 5) “I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfil your ministry.”
Pastor Dave and his wife, Theresa, have been married for 40 years and have two adult married children and one grandchild. Pastor Dave and Theresa both are Permanent Residents of Hong Kong and consider it their home, having raised their children there and having lived in six different neighbourhoods over the years.
Pastor Dave is the founder of Zeal for the Word Ministries, a podcast ministry that focuses on ministering to Jesus Christ’s church in Asia, especially among those being persecuted for their faith. Having lived in and done ministry throughout Asia in many different ministry contexts for over twelve years, he brings a special perspective to the problems facing Christians in Asia.