Elders

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  • Bruce Clinard, Chair - Class of 2025

    I was born at Camp Lejeune Marine Corps Base in North Carolina. Since my father was a career Marine, I grew up on Marine bases all over the country including three years in Hawaii. I was blessed to meet my soul mate, Becky, while we were seniors in high school. We married in 1973 after I graduated from the University of North Carolina. Even though I now work for Texas Tech, I have to admit that my blood still runs Carolina Blue.


    While at Carolina, I earned a degree in Mathematics and a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force. Becky and I spent the next twenty years in the Air Force where I served as an Aircraft Maintenance Officer. Along the way we were blessed with two special daughters, Lisa and Megan.


    Having grown up as a Marine Corps brat and then spending twenty years in the Air Force, I had never lived any where more than 3-4 years. However, in 1986, the Air Force transferred us to Reese AFB in Lubbock, TX -- and we’ve never left. Also in 1986, Raintree became our family. We were honored and blessed to have Charles Carmen baptize Becky, Lisa and myself that same year. A few years later, I had the privilege of baptizing Megan myself. I can tell you there’s no better feeling for a father than that!


    I retired from the Air Force in 1993 and took a position at Texas Tech in the Northwest Texas Small Business Development Center where I assisted small businesses in the West Texas area. After 24 years, I recently retired from Texas Tech.


    As our girls were growing up, both Becky and I were very active in the Children’s and Youth Ministries. Becky also worked for a year as the Church Secretary. Over the years I have served the church in many different capacities including that of elder. One of my most enjoyable roles is as teacher for the Ambassador Class. They clearly taught me more than I taught them.


    My walk with the Lord has been slow in starting and far from perfect, but in spite of that He continues to bless me in immeasurable ways. Out of gratitude, my desire is to serve Him and His church in any way I can.

  • Jeremy Brown - Class of 2027

    I was born in Odessa, TX and consider Abilene, TX “home” having spent my formative years there. I can to Lubbock in 1995 to start my freshman year at Texas Tech University. Having grown up in the Independent Christian Church, I visited Raintree one Sunday. Roberta Carmen, wife of the Senior Minister at that time, found out I was a music major. She pointed up to where the choir sat (in the “old” building before the new gym and auditorium were built), and said, “Your seat is right up there.” And that was that. Anyone who knew Roberta knows you didn’t argue with her. 


    It is because of Raintree that I met my wife, Beth. It was Summer 1999 and I had just graduated from Tech. The church was going through some staffing changes and really didn’t have anyone to take the 4 high schooler to camp. Ron Betenbough, whom I was work for that summer, offered me my week’s salary if I would drive the kids to camp. Beth was attending Dallas Christian College and was a member of their camp team that summer. She spent roughly 10 weeks that summer going from church camp to church camp being a camp counselor. We were married 19 months to the day after we met! 


    About 5 months after we married, we moved from Lubbock to Houston so I could attend medical school. After 8 years in Houston, we returned to Lubbock. After visiting several other churches, we both agreed that Raintree felt like home and we have been members ever since. As of May 2023, I have been a member of Raintree for 20 years. Beth and I have welcomed 2 children into our home in the past 14 years, Eleanor in 2010, and Josiah in 2012. We are honored to accept this call to serve and give back to a church and congregation who have given so much to us!

  • Don Lytton - Class of 2028

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