Leadership Team

Josh Tanner

Lead Executive Pastor 

Josh Tanner is an inspirational leader who cultivates love-driven, passionate believers!  His vision is to equip and mobilize believers to become the most dynamic leaders in their city, state, nation, and throughout the world. His mission is to give every person in the great state of Alaska an opportunity to encounter the love of Jesus in this generation and the next!  Josh is a lifelong Alaskan, born and raised on the Kenai Peninsula. He enjoys the outdoors, fishing, rafting and snow-machining, sports, and doing almost anything with his family and friends!  Josh has served in church leadership for over 20 years at Unite Church.  Josh is married to his high school sweetheart, Joni for 26 years. Josh and Joni have 3 adult children and 3 still at home.  Josh currently serves as Lead Executive Pastor of Unite Church.

Joni Tanner


Joni’s greatest desire is to be who her Father created her to be and to be obedient to that in every season of her life. Her primary ministry for the past 25 years has been raising her 6 awesome kids, Caleb, Maggie, Judah, Titus, Justus, and Cherish. This “mothering” passion flows naturally into the relationships that she has with the body of Christ.  Joni serves as part of the Unite executive team which builds and develops a healthy thriving church culture.  Joni holds her Associate in Christian leadership from CLU and a certificate in Biblical Studies from TBI.  Joni majored in fine arts at UAA and is an accomplished painter. Her work has been featured in various local galleries and has won several national competitions.  Joni is an entrepreneur who owns and manages her real estate business called ‘Tent Makers’.  Joni is married to her best friend and high school sweetheart Josh Tanner.  They currently reside in Anchorage Alaska where they serve Jesus together as pastors at Unite Church.


Jim Strutz


Jim Strutz was born in Anchorage, AK in 1952.  He was a Bible student and an intern pastor at Abbott Loop Chapel. He later studied at, and received a Doctor of Ministry degree from Christian Life School of Theology and has taught in several Bible schools and Christian training centers.  Jim was ordained as a Bible teacher in 1978 and has operated in that function for over 40 years.  Jim has been married to his sweetheart, Janet, for 49 years and is the proud father to 3 adult children and 12 grandchildren.  They currently reside in Anchorage, Alaska and pastor a church in their home called ‘Just Watch’.

Rick Benjamin


Rick has a passion to teach the word of God.  His life verse is 2Corinthians 5:14-15, For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. Rick grew up in Anchorage Alaska and graduated from Robert Service High School in 1974. He holds a BA in Bible/New Testament Greek from Northwest College, and an MA in Social Science/Leadership Studies from Azusa Pacific University, CA.
Rick is an ordained pastor and served as a full-time minister at Abbott Loop Church from 1978 until 2008.  Rick served as the Sr. Pastor of Abbott Loop for 19 years before retiring from full-time church ministry.  Rick now serves as the Director of Organizational and Spiritual Wellness at Hope Community Resources in Anchorage AK.
Rick is very involved in Christian networking in his community.  He is a long-standing member of the Anchorage Evangelical Pastors Fellowship, Rotarian, Anchorage East Rotary, Interfaith Council of Anchorage, and the Anchorage Board of Ethics.
Rick and his wife Deloris have two adopted sons, David and Michael.  They are the proud grandparents of Tucker Benjamin. They currently reside in Anchorage Alaska.

Karen Fink


Karen Fink was led by God to move to Alaska in 1984.  She served faithfully in her local church, leading an evangelism movement that saw thousands come to Christ.  Called to preach the word of God with a prophetic emphasis, she has spoken in conferences and churches in Alaska, Mexico, and Ireland.  She also has served as a prophetic intercessor locally, in Alaska, the United States, Asia, and Europe for twenty years.  Her primary focus and call is to equip the Body of Christ through ‘Lifestyle Evangelism’.  Her heart is to prepare others to reach the harvest during the Spirit’s great outpouring.  Karen’s own ministry, ‘Arise Shine Kingdom Ministries’, is located in Anchorage, Alaska.  She also works on staff at Unite Church.

Leigh Sloan


Leigh Sloan has served the body of Christ in numerous leadership capacities over the past 25 years.  She holds a bachelor’s in Education and is certified in Gifted Education.  She is currently a homeschool educator who instructs both her own children and others.  Leigh is married to YouTube Influencer Jake Sloan and has three very uniquely gifted children: Ian, Jael, and Isaac.  Leigh hosts a podcast called ‘Brave Nation’ where she explores cultural topics that people are often afraid to discuss.  ‘Brave Nation’ also hosts regular events that equip people from every sphere to step into their God-given identity that significantly shifts the culture around them.  She also facilitates breakthroughs through coaching and consulting people, businesses, and organizations.
She is active in the Alaskan political sphere where she brings a kingdom perspective on radio/podcasts or through her writing.

Zach Neese


Zach Neese has been a worship pastor and teacher for more than 20 years. In addition to serving as the Pastor of Worship Development at Gateway Church for 14 years, he also directed the Christ for the Nations School of Worship and helped launch and teach the Worship Leadership programs at The King’s University. Zach has a Kingdom culture perspective of biblical worship ministry that transcends denominational and international lines, and he has trained worship leaders from all over the world.
Zach believes there is a difference between “leading worship” and pastoring people in the presence of God. His leadership reflects his passion for helping people develop vibrant, transformational, and world-changing relationships with Jesus. Zach currently serves as a pastor at Gateway Church, and he also travels internationally, training worship leaders and teaching worshipping churches.
Zach is a seasoned songwriter (“Living Water,” “The More I Seek You,” “Faithful God,” “Alabaster Jar”) as well as an accomplished author. His book, How to Worship a King, is used by worshipping churches and schools around the world to prepare their people, their students, and their worship teams to minister to God and to the world He loves.
Zach and his wife, Jen, live in Fort Worth, Texas, with their six bright, good-looking, and godly children: Simeon, Judah, Charis, Maggie, Nora, and Sam.