Warren is a native of greater Seattle. His journey has taken him all over the United States, but it is his heart for the Pacific Northwest that has drawn him back to Bellevue. He and his wife Leah have been married for 20 years and have two beautiful children. Warren has a passion for young people, families, and those who feel like they are on the outside looking in, and he strives to share a message filled with hope and inspiration: that a life devoted to Jesus is essential to joy, meaning, and purpose. 
In addition to ministry, Warren has a passion for snowboarding, tennis, fantasy football, the UW Huskies, and the Seattle Seahawks. Warren has twice served as the  President of the Eastgate Expounders Toastmasters Club and is the Seattle Area Director for Generation LINK. Warren also serves as a board member for the Pillar Network.  
Warren is also a trained Marital and Pre-Marital counselor who uses the Prepare-Enrich Assessment and Counseling tools. Leah is a supportive wife and a devoted mother, as well as a voice/piano instructor and the founder of MusiKids. Leah’s love for children and music has positively impacted families all across the country.


Zach VanWestrienen
Student Ministries Director & Pastoral Assistant
Zach leads our growing Student Ministry.  Zach brings creativity, excitement and excellence to our Student Ministry.  He also serves with our Worship team and feels called to Pastoral ministry.  Zach is a student at Northwest and working toward his Masters of Divinity.
Worship Leader
Robby has a great passion for Worship.  He loves to bring people into a deeper relationship with Jesus through the gateway of music.  In addition to leading worship at Essential Church, Robby is also the lead singer for Ascension Worship.  
Robby and his wife Mary are expecting their first child.  He works full time as a server on the Eastside.  
phoenix li
International Ministries and Missions Director
Phoenix and her husband JiLong joined Essential in 2015 and came on staff in 2016 to oversee our growing ministry to internationals.  Phoenix will also be coordinating our international mission trips/relationships as well as our ministry experiences in Othello, WA.  She also serves with Bridges International at Bellevue College.
Brock Hay
Brock is serving as a Generation LINK intern at Essential Church.  His passion is Student ministry and is currently serving with the Student Ministry, Collegiate ministry and Worship ministry as a part of a one year training and equipping experience.  Brock’s desire is to enter into Student Ministry.
Stephanie Parkins
Administrative Specialist
Stephanie oversees all administrative needs for Essential Church.  She is a devoted wife and mother, as well as an accomplished administrator in the public sector/higher education.  Stephanie recently served as the Seattle City Coordinator for the Priscilla Shirer Live conference.
Young Adult Director
Brendan leads a vibrant and growing young adult ministry at Essential and also serves on the worship team.  Brendan and his wife Katie are a loving couple that bring joy and energy to the Essential team.  He also works as the Volunteer Coordinator for Jubilee REACH.
Zach Whitlow
Zach is serving as a Generation LINK intern at Essential Church.  Zach leads our Collegiate ministry as well as heads up our Set Up team.  Zach is also serving in the Children’s ministry and Student ministry as a part of a one year training and equipping experience.