The staff at Mission Discovery is made up of passionate, generous people who have dedicated their lives to helping others. They minister by leading and organizing short-term mission trips for volunteers, and thousands are helped every year as a result!

Since 1991, our goal has been to provide volunteers with an immersive, transformational experience that leaves them changed forever. Whether it’s through an international or domestic mission trip, we hope you’ll come away from your time with us feeling like the person who has been given something great in return for your hard work and commitment towards serving others.

Every staff member is committed to making the name of Jesus known through our love and service. Every project coordinator with Mission Discovery raises funds so that we can keep costs low for mission trips here at home as well as abroad! Join them on a trip or donate today. Your resources will go towards bringing other people into God’s Kingdom through our mission trips.

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JIMMY RIVERA

President

I am a lover of life and all that God has to offer! My first Mission Discovery trip was as a participant with my church. I helped translate the Vacation Bible School for a week-long trip in Reynosa, Mexico. When I returned home I was convinced that pursuing work with MD full time was for me! That was in 1993. Today I coordinate trips for Mission Discovery, lead our Board of Directors and use my skills in finance and administration to oversee the dollars that flow through our organization each year. I’m married to Kyla and have three children who have all been a part of mission trips with Mission Discovery.

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MICHAEL KNEFF

Director of U.S. Projects

Michael served on his first mission trip with Mission Discovery when he was 13 years old. After that first trip, he kept serving with Mission Discovery until they finally offered him a job. He has served as a project coordinator for over 10 years; primarily in Guatemala and South Dakota. A love for travel and experiencing other cultures continues to motivate him to serve in parts of the U.S. and abroad. Michael graduated from East Tennessee State University with a degree in Computer Graphics, which he uses regularly to create many of Mission Discovery’s printed materials and graphics needs.

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COURTNEY CARRIGAN

HOLD the Children Director

Courtney went on her first mission trip with Mission Discovery to Reynosa, Mexico when she was 8 years old. She has a passion for orphan care and education advocacy. This resulted in Courtney becoming the Director of our HOLD the Children child sponsorship program. She oversees 12 schools throughout Haiti, Jamaica, and Guatemala totaling more than 2,500 students and an orphanage where 45 children reside. She leads our HOLD mission trips throughout Haiti as well as some Jamaica mission trips. If you’re interested in learning more about HOLD and our orphanage, please contact Courtney.

She can be reached at [email protected].  Courtney joined the staff of Mission Discovery in 2014 as one of our Project Coordinators; she transitioned into the role of Director of HOLD in the summer of 2018.  Courtney lives in her hometown of Nashville, TN.

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STEPHANIE COOK

Administrative Director

Stephanie has a passion for missions that has been fueled by trips throughout high school and college. Her previous mission trip opportunities include trips to Portugal, Costa Rica, Brazil, Mexico, the Bahamas, Jamaica, and several locations in the US. Outside of mission work, she enjoys scrapbooking, reading, and Zumba workouts! Her favorite way to pass the time is hanging out with her husband, Andy, and playing with her awesome kiddos, Luci, Reese and Bristol. After going on mission trips as a high school youth, a college student, and as an adult and experiencing the life change that comes with it, she was hooked! She is grateful that God has placed her here at Mission Discovery where she can use her organizational skills and still reach out to many people both domestically and internationally!

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CHERYL MILNES

Accounting Specialist

Cheryl Milnes has served with Mission Discovery since 2003 when she led a Mexico mission trip for the middle-school students of her church.   She has been on many Mission Discovery trips to Mexico, South Dakota, Jamaica and Haiti.  She has served on the board since 2009.

She met her husband, Dana, at Penn State University where she majored in Accounting and became a CPA.  She uses her CPA skills in helping small businesses and start-ups grow as well as advising non-profit companies.   She and her husband have served their church in the children, middle school, new member and adult ministries through the past 37 years of their marriage.

Cheryl and Dana currently live in Brookfield Wisconsin and are parents to 4 adult children and grandparents to three (soon to be four) grandchildren.  They enjoy traveling all across the nation visiting their children and their families.

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PAT PREGEL

Office Assistant

Many will recognize Pat from the hundreds she has fed in Mission Discovery kitchens in the U.S. and Mexico.  Pat and her husband Carl were introduced to Mission Discovery through a friend who needed help cooking for a Mission Discovery camp in Reynosa, Mexico.  Pat loved the experience of serving our teams week after week while Carl assisted teams as a contractor building hundreds of homes along the US/Mexico border.  Pat spends her spare time serving her church and serving on weekend spiritual retreats called Tres Dias.  At Mission Discovery Pat helps our staff with monthly mailings and assists in coordinating our fundraising events.