Our Team

Freedom to Lead International® is supported by people like you who want to see the multiplication of healthy churches, that are led by Christ-centered leaders among storycentric communities around the world.

Rick Sessoms


Rick has been a missionary, pastor, educator, and mission executive. He holds a Master of Divinity, Doctor of Ministry, and a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership. He has provided organizational consulting and leadership coaching throughout Asia, Africa, the Americas, and Europe. Rick and his wife Tina have two grown children and live in North Carolina.

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Chip DeWitt

Director for Development

Chip has been a pastor, educator, fundraiser and attorney. He holds a Master of Divinity and a Juris Doctorate. Chip has helped numerous organizations, both secular and Christian, in the field of development for over 22 years. He and his wife, Margy, have three grown children and live in Raleigh, NC.

John Blausey

Director of Operations

For over ten years John was the CEO/President of a small web development firm in Fort Worth, TX. John is a graduate of Toccoa Falls College with a degree in Biblical Studies and has completed 5 Ironman races. He and his wife Laura have three children and live in North Carolina.

Michelle Sessoms

Communications Director

Michelle has been a missionary, educator, cross-cultural trainer, administrator, and writer. She holds a Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies. Michelle has spent significant time living in East Africa, Central Asia, and Southeast Asia. After a decade being involved in campus ministry at universities across China, she now resides in North Carolina.

Margy DeWitt

Finance Administrator

Margy has a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting. She is excited to come alongside the rest of the FTL team as they equip storycentric Christians worldwide for leadership in the church. At an early age, Margy felt the Lord’s call on her life to combine her love for Him with her passion for missions and business. Her work at FTL enables her to combine all three. Margy is married to Chip DeWitt, who is on the FTL Board. They have three grown sons.

José and France-Lise Oliveira

West Africa Program Facilitators

José Oliveira was born in the Cape Verde Islands, and grew up in Senegal, West Africa. He studied theology in France and missiology in the USA. He has served as a pastor and as Director of United World Mission in Senegal.

France-Lise was born and raised in Guadeloupe. Jose and France-Lise met in France and were married. In 1997, they co-founded and led Mission Inter Senegal, a holistic church planting agency, for fifteen years. With over three decades of ministry experience, the Oliveiras are now focused on developing and encouraging leaders as well as counseling and matrimonial coaching throughout West Africa. The Oliveiras have three children and three grandchildren.

Doug Anthony

Storycentric Arts Partner

Doug led worship ministries in local churches for 25  years. He holds a Bachelors of Music Degree, a Masters of Music in Music History and Ethnomusicology and a PhD in Ethnomusicology. In addition to his church and community service Doug  coached churches and church leaders around the world to become strategically missional in their use of music. Doug and Mary Lu have three adult sons and now live in Garner, North Carolina.

Mary Lu Anthony

Storycentric Arts Partner

Mary Lu served with her husband, Doug, leading worship ministries for over 25 years. She holds a Bachelor of Sacred Music degree, is Licensed & Consecrated with the Christian and Missionary Alliance and is a lifetime Nationally Certified Teacher of Music. Mary Lu also operated a private piano studio for 28 years and she is the pianist and the Assistant Musical Theater Director for the Elida school district. She has served served on the executive boards at the district and state levels of Ohio Music Teachers Association for the past 18 years. Together with Doug, they have led and coached churches and church leaders around the world to become strategically missional in their use of music. Mary Lu and Doug have three adult sons and now live in Garner, North Carolina.

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Contact Us

P.O. Box 3
Cary, NC 27512