Staff & Board

STAFF

Karen Covell

Karen – Founding Director

Karen speaks and teaches around the country, challenging Christians to embrace the creative and business professionals in Hollywood with the love and compassion of Jesus, and she is a published co-author of two books: How to Talk About Jesus Without Freaking Out (The J Bomb) and The Day I Met God. Karen is also a producer and Co-Founder of JC Productions, an independent films and music production company. She has had extensive experience producing TV specials, documentaries and children’s programming, is developing a feature film and is an active member of the Producers Guild of America. Karen is a graduate of USC and is married to her best pal, Jim, a composer, and they have two sons: Christopher, a script reader and consultant and Cameron, who is an independent filmmaker.

Kelry

Kelry – Program Director

In addition to her work at HPN, Kelry is a ministry leader with DSM Hollywood (Dan Sherstad Ministries), and a professional web designer, and creative director. She is an avid prayer warrior, a worship leader alongside her husband (saxophonist/ singer/songwriter Timothy), and is a mother of two children. Kelry and Timothy made the decision to relocate to LA from Wisconsin in 2017. While visiting California for the first time, she and her husband were at the Griffith Observatory praying over the valley, and Timothy cried out to God saying “God, send revival here!” The Lord answered him, “That’s why I’m sending you.” Kelry’s desire is to see believers in Hollywood united with one heart, and for Holy Spirit-led revival to be unleashed in the media and entertainment industries.

Karen Covell

Karen – Founding Director

Karen speaks and teaches around the country, challenging Christians to embrace the creative and business professionals in Hollywood with the love and compassion of Jesus, and she is a published co-author of two books: How to Talk About Jesus Without Freaking Out (The J Bomb) and The Day I Met God. Karen is  also a producer and Co-Founder of JC Productions, an independent films and music production company. She has had extensive experience producing TV specials, documentaries and children’s programming, is developing a feature film and is an active member of the Producers Guild of America. Karen is a graduate of USC and is married to her best pal, Jim, a composer, and they have two sons: Christopher, a script reader and consultant and Cameron, who is an independent director.

Kelry

Kelry – Program Director

In addition to her work at HPN, Kelry is a ministry leader with DSM Hollywood (Dan Sherstad Ministries), and a professional web designer, and creative director. She is an avid prayer warrior, a worship leader alongside her husband (saxophonist/ singer/songwriter Timothy), and is a mother of two children. Kelry and Timothy made the decision to relocate to LA from Wisconsin in 2017. While visiting California for the first time, she and her husband were at the Griffith Observatory praying over the valley, and Timothy cried out to God saying “God, send revival here!” The Lord answered him, “That’s why I’m sending you.” Kelry’s desire is to see believers in Hollywood united with one heart, and for Holy Spirit-led revival to be unleashed in the media and entertainment industries.

Jasmine Tompkins

Jasmine – Office Administrator

Jasmine Tompkins worked as a product development engineer for five years before moving to Los Angeles in 2020 to pursue her lifelong passions in the entertainment industry. She is a singer/songwriter and actress and also enjoys writing and directing. Jasmine’s heart is to know God more and more and to love people well. She is so thrilled to be a part of the Hollywood Prayer Network team and to see God work in the most beautiful and unexpected ways through prayer and community in Hollywood. Email Jasmine with any questions about joining our upcoming prayer calls, scheduling a meetup, or to learn more about HPN!

Jasmine Tompkins

Jasmine – Office Administrator

Jasmine Tompkins worked as a product development engineer for five years before moving to Los Angeles in 2020 to pursue her lifelong passions in the entertainment industry. She is a singer/songwriter and actress and also enjoys writing and directing. Jasmine’s heart is to know God more and more and to love people well. She is so thrilled to be a part of the Hollywood Prayer Network team and to see God work in the most beautiful and unexpected ways through prayer and community in Hollywood. Email Jasmine with any questions about joining our upcoming prayer calls, scheduling a meetup, or to learn more about HPN!

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Tom Halleen

Faculty, Biola University

Tom is the former executive vice president of programming strategy, acquisitions and scheduling at AMC Networks, and is currently the founding dean of Biola’s School of Cinema and Media Arts. He brings a wise and experienced business voice to the table as he offers his rich knowledge of Hollywood from a business perspective. He is also in tune with the needs of today’s film students. Here is his full bio: https://www.biola.edu/directory/people/tom-halleen

Tom Halleen
Tom Halleen

Tom Halleen

Faculty, Biola University

Tom is the former executive vice president of programming strategy, acquisitions and scheduling at AMC Networks, and is currently the founding dean of Biola’s School of Cinema and Media Arts. He brings a wise and experienced business voice to the table as he offers his rich knowledge of Hollywood from a business perspective. He is also in tune with the needs of today’s film students. Here is his full bio: https://www.biola.edu/directory/people/tom-halleen

Merlinda Balmas

Warner Bros., 9t5 Work-Life Ministry

Merlinda works at Warner Bros. Theatrical Marketing and it was there where she felt God’s calling to start 9t5, a ministry whose purpose is to equip and encourage Christians in their God-given roles to function with a Kingdom mindset and win their sphere of influence for Christ. She is also the Co-Director of Hollywood Prayer Network’s Hollywood Chapter and the President of Open Table Outreach (OTO), an organization that serves the homeless communities in Long Beach and Hollywood.

Merlinda Balmas

Warner Bros., 9t5 Work-Life Ministry

Merlinda works at Warner Bros. Theatrical Marketing and it was there where she felt God’s calling to start 9t5, a ministry whose purpose is to equip and encourage Christians in their God-given roles to function with a Kingdom mindset and win their sphere of influence for Christ. She is also the Co-Director of Hollywood Prayer Network’s Hollywood Chapter and the President of Open Table Outreach (OTO), an organization that serves the homeless communities in Long Beach and Hollywood.

Dean Batali

Television writer, showrunner

Dean Batali is a television writer who worked on “That 70s Show” for seven years, serving as an executive producer for the show’s final season. He wrote for the initial two seasons of “Buffy, The Vampire Slayer” and has written for “Duckman,” “The Half-Hour News Hour,” and “The Adventures of Pete and Pete.” Most recently he was the executive producer and showrunner for two seasons on the Hallmark Channel’s “Good Witch.” Dean co-authored the book “Watching TV Religiously” and was featured in the book “Faith in the Halls of Power.”

Dean Batali

Television writer, showrunner

Dean Batali is a television writer who worked on “That 70s Show” for seven years, serving as an executive producer for the show’s final season. He wrote for the initial two seasons of “Buffy, The Vampire Slayer” and has written for “Duckman,” “The Half-Hour News Hour,” and “The Adventures of Pete and Pete.” Most recently he was the executive producer and showrunner for two seasons on the Hallmark Channel’s “Good Witch.” Dean co-authored the book “Watching TV Religiously” and was featured in the book “Faith in the Halls of Power.”

Dr. Naima Lett

Pastor, producer

Dr. Naima Lett is an award-winning actor, producer, speaker and co-pastor with husband Kevin of Hope in the Hills, a diverse church plant in Beverly Hills. As Dallas Seminary’s first Master in Media & Communications and BIOLA’s first female Doctor in Preaching, she loves helping young leaders find their purpose and follow their dreams while deepening their faith.

Dr. Naima Lett

Pastor, producer

Dr. Naima Lett is an award-winning actor, producer, speaker and co-pastor with husband Kevin of Hope in the Hills, a diverse church plant in Beverly Hills. As Dallas Seminary’s first Master in Media & Communications and BIOLA’s first female Doctor in Preaching, she loves helping young leaders find their purpose and follow their dreams while deepening their faith.

BOARD OF REFERENCE

    • Phil Cooke – Founder & CEO, Cooke Media Group

    • Kathleen Cooke – Founding Partner & VP, Cooke Media Group

    • Karen Leonard – Social Worker

    • Jim Leonard – Pastor, Cornerstone Church Los Angeles

    • Brannon Shortt – Pastor, Saddleback Church

    • Ryan Bethea – Digital Marketing Consultant