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The Reverend Clarence E. Stowers, Jr. was born on December 2, 1966 to Dr. Clarence (deceased) and Margaret Stowers, Sr. in Evanston, Illinois. He began his spiritual pilgrimage at Mars Hill under the leadership of Dr. Clarence E. Stowers, Sr. He accepted his call to preach the gospel in 1991 and was licensed and ordained at Mars Hill. In May of 1999, he succeeded his father as the pastor of the historic Mars Hill Baptist Church of Chicago. Mars Hill has experienced phenomenal ministry growth under his visionary pastoral leadership. Since his ministry there, more than 1500 souls have been saved and united with the church. In 2004, Mars Hill was awarded the Church Health Award from Rick Warren and Saddleback Church. Mars Hill is an innovative, multicultural, and soon-to-be multi-site church. With membership now exceeding 2200, it is one of the fastest growing churches in the Midwest. Pastor Stowers shares his life and ministry with his gifted wife, Lady Shauntai Stowers and three children, Myles, Joshua and Lauren.

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  • Education

    Northern Baptist Theological Seminary

    Master of Divinity, 2005

    Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

    Master of Arts - Urban Ministry, 1998

    University of Missouri-Columbia

    Master of Public Administration, 1991

    Jackson State University

    Bachelor of Science, 1989

    Shauntai Stowers is a native of Vicksburg, MS and a graduate of Jackson State University where she received her Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice. After graduating from JSU, she soon married the love of her life, Clarence E. Stowers, Jr., Senior Pastor of Mars Hill Baptist Church. She is also a graduate of Roosevelt University, where she received her Certification as a Paralegal. She is the proud mother of two talented and gifted sons, and one brilliant and beautiful daughter.

    Shauntai currently serves as the Director of the Life Development Children and Youth Ministry as well as the Director and Visionary of the Women of Worth Women’s Ministry of Mars Hill Baptist Church. She is an advocate for children’s education and helping women find their purpose in life.

    Growing up as a child having to be the primary caregiver to her mother who suffered from epilepsy, she gained a passion for healthcare although she followed in the footsteps of her grandfather in the legal field. That passion never left and today she serves as the Co-Chair of the First Ladies Health Initiaitive sponsored by Walgreens.

    It is her desire to make a difference in the lives of African Americans and Hispanics who are disproportunately affected by preventative illnesses and diseases that plague the city of Chicago.

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    Roosevelt University

    Lawyers Assistant Program - Civil Litigation, 1997

    Jackson State University

    Bachelor of Science, 1992

    Mary Taylor is a long time member of Mars Hill. She joined the ministry staff in 2005 as Chief of Staff. She is responsible for communicating with the Senior Pastor and partnering with the Mars Hill staff and ministry leaders to efficiently and effectively manage the day to day operations of the Mars Hill ministries.

    Prior to accepting the position as Chief of Staff, she worked in corporate America for Sears for 41 years. She retired in 2005 from her Management position in Sears’ Purchasing Department.

    Mary has one daughter; Petite and one granddaughter; Alyssa.

    Executive Assistant to Senior Pastor

    Sandra DeShazer

    Sandra DeShazer joined Mars Hill in 2000 and has been active in the Life Development Ministry since that time. She is a graduate of John Marshall High School, Triton Community College (Associate of Science Degree, 1988) and DePaul University where she received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in 1994, and her Master of Science Degree, in Public Service Management in 1999. She retired from AT&T in 2008 from a second level management position. Sandra is the mother of one great son and grandmother of 3 beautiful grandchildren. She currently serves as Executive Assistant to Pastor Clarence E. Stowers, Jr.

    Known for his dynamic, inspiring and anointed ministry, Travis Edwards is one of the newest and freshest singers, songwriters, & speakers, of this new age and time. He is also known as a popular worship leader.

    M. Travis Edwards’ musical journey began at an early age when he started singing in his youth choir at First Corithian M.B. Church. As a teenager, Travis’ vocal skills, directing and songwriting ability was evident, and it soon became clear that God was birthing something new within him.

    Shortly thereafter, Travis began working closely under the assistance of the “Pattie Labelle” of gospel; Angela Spivey. Travis watched and prayed as he consumed everything he could from this director, singer, and songwriter extraordinaire. This experience and knowledge afforded him many other opportunities and Travis sensed that God was moving him into the next phase of his ministry, and now he has become a powerhouse vocalist who leads thousands in worship at concerts, conferences, and churches.

    Travis has served a worship leader for some Chicago’s prominent churches; Rock of Ages, Pastor Marvin Whiley, Oakdale Covenant, Pastor Daryl Griffin, and St. Mark Cathedral, Pastor Willie Jordan. During his tenure at St. Mark Cathedral he worked closely with Minister Lonnie Hunter, Director of Hunter communications. He has also assisted Lonnie Hunter in several workshops teaching vocal techniques & training.

    Travis has done lead vocals for Malcolm Williams & Great Faith and William Stewart and VOPM. Written songs for Rosland Sanders, Malcolm Williams and currently writing on his freshman project; “Go beyond where you are” which is on the 2006 Pure Gospel compilation CD. Travis has appeared on the Total Living Network, “Inspirational Sound”, Sounds of Relief for Hurricane Katrina, and Singsation.

    Travis has done modeling for the GospelFlava magazine and also hosted a gospel show on AM 1390.

    Travis’ gift has allowed him to minister with many powerful ministries including; Albertina Walker, Canton Spirituals, Kurt Karr, Kim Burrell, Nancy Jackson, Ricky Dillard, Walt Whitman and a host of others within the Gospel and secular genres.

    Through fasting and praying Travis began his very own ministry of Travis Edwards & Products of Praise, out of Chicago, Illinois.

    Executive Assistant

    Ann Parker

    Ann Parker has been a member of Mars Hill since November 1963. She was a part of the Mars Hill administrative team during the tenure of Pastor Clarence E. Stowers, Sr. and now continues to provide support to Pastor Clarence E. Stowers, Jr.

    Ann worked full time for International Harvester/Komatsu Dress for 26 years and the Village of River Forest, Illinois for 14 years. She transitioned from the Village of River Forest, Illinois in May 2009 and has since fully retired.

    Ann loves to travel, visit different islands and spending time with family and friends.

    Rev. Tim Morris was born in the great city of Chicago, Illinois on the 8th of September, 1965.

    Rev. Morris was led to Christ by his parents, Deacon Julius Morris Jr. and Geneva Morris (both deceased) who were members of Mars Hill since his birth.

    Rev. Morris was licensed to preach in January 1996, under the leadership of Pastor Clarence E. Stowers, Sr. (deceased). He has served as Mars Hill's Staff since 2002, serves as an Associate Minister and he's currently the Director of Pastoral Care Ministry.

    As Director, he oversees Pastoral Care and Prayer. Additionally, his team provides coordination to ministries relating to those areas and provides pastoral counseling, hospital visits, funerals, weddings and directs a comprehensive ministry of Pastoral Care for all church members and regular attenders.

    The Pastoral Care Ministry Team ensures that every member is Touched, Loved, and Cared for (TLC).

    Rev. Morris shares his life with his beautiful wife, Katina and two wonderful children, Dejanae and Timothy Kaleb.


    Grand Canyon University

    Bachelor of Science 2012 - Applied Management / Biblical Studies

    Administrative Assistant to Pastoral Care

    Cindy Johnson

    Cindy Johnson has been a member of Mars Hill for 45 years. She is the mother of two and the grandmother of two. She has been a part of Mars Hill's Staff for over twelve years. She has served in ministry most of her life. She gets the most satisfaction in helping others. She truly feels that she's blessed to have been chosen to be a part of Mars Hill's Pastoral Care Ministry. It allows her to build relationships and serve God’s people. She is an avid book reader and have a soulful and powerful voice. Currently, she's doing studio voice over work.

    Director of Spiritual Formation

    Brenda Lee

    Brenda Lee is a native of Houston, Texas who made a career move to Chicago, IL from New Orleans, LA. After settling down in Oak Park, IL she immediately searched for and found a church home at Mars Hill Baptist Church where Clarence Stowers, Sr., was Pastor. This has been her only church home in Illinois since her arrival some 20+ years ago.

    A firm believer in the pursuit of purpose and balance in one’s life; Brenda Lee strives to keep the Spirit, Mind and Body strong by celebrating God’s presence, participating in activities that focus on growth & development and endeavoring to live a healthy lifestyle.

    A skilled athlete through-out high school, Brenda Lee pursued and obtained a full athletic scholarship from the University of Houston where she received a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Mass Communications. She also holds an MBA in Marketing.

    As Director of Spiritual Formation, she and her team strive to fulfill the purpose of “Moving People Towards Christlikeness”: transforming believers and non-believers into fully devoted followers of Christ by developing and executing programming that helps them embody the scripture: “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2, NIV)

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