Chris Highfill

Lead Pastor

Jacob Matthews

Next Generation Pastor

Rob Salyer

GraceKids Ministry Director

Shelly Temm

GraceKids Development / Training Director

Patty Taylor

Administrative Assistant


Chris Highfill - Lead Pastor

Chris Highfill is a graduate of Southwest Baptist University with a degree in church ministries. Prior to church planting, Chris worked in youth ministry for 14 years; 13 of those at the same church. Chris is also the founder of The Link Camp, a two week summer camp for middle and high school students. Under Chris’s leadership, the camp grew from 80 to 800 students in four years.

Chris serves as first vice chairman of the O’Fallon Chamber of Commerce and the Saint Charles County Vision Leadership program. He is also Regional Director of Church Planting for Converge Mid America.

Chris met his wife Sarah while in college and they have been married since 2003. They have three children; Ella, Jack and Alle. His sermons are thoughtful and inspiring (and injected with humor) and relate The Bible and Jesus’ love for us to everyday life.


Jacob Matthews - Next Generation Pastor

Jacob serves as the Next Generation Pastor here at Grace River. He is a recent graduate of Baptist Bible College in Springfield, Missouri where he earned his B.S. in Intercultural Studies. He is passionate about helping others find and follow Jesus, as well as seeing people take the next step in their walk with Christ.

Jacob was recently married to his wife, Hannah, who is also excited to partner alongside of the mission at Grace River Church.


Rob Salyer - Children’s Director

Rob graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. He has been the Director and co-owner of Leaps and Bounds pediatric therapy center since 2005. Rob has served on the boards of The Greater St. Louis Prayer Breakfast, Teen Challenge of St. Louis, and Tres Dias of St. Louis. Rob has a passion for teaching and leadership. He loves using humor, silliness, and engaging games to share God’s love and grace with kids.

Rob has been married to his wife, Carrie, since 2000 and they have two children, Gavin and Mia.


Shelly Temm - GraceKids Development and Training Director

Shelly graduated from Lindenwood with a Bachelor degree in Elementary Education.  She has enjoyed teaching in the education field since 1998.  She most recently taught 4th Grade at Trinity Christian Academy and in the Fort Zumwalt School District. Shelly is passionate about building relationships with students and parents so they can grow in their relationship with Jesus.

Shelly has been married to her husband, Brad, since 2000.  They enjoy doing home improvements and anything outdoors.  They have 3 children: Carter, Mya, and Lydia.


Patty Taylor - Administrative Assistant

Patty graduated from Southwest Missouri State University in Springfield, MO with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Systems. She held positions as a Manager and also Project Manager for several large corporations in the St. Louis area for 30+ years, and retired in 2016.

Patty has been married to her husband Mark, since 1997, and they have two children, Alyssa and Brendan, both in college.  Patty’s family enjoys spending time at the Lake of the Ozarks.