Counseling Ministry at GateWay Bible Church



Life. It can be
The Branches counselors would like to come alongside and support you in facing such times; to grow in Him and ‘bear much fruit.’


Branches Ministry offers licensed clinical counseling, pastoral counseling and certified life coaching.  All our services are client-focused, relationship based, and supportive of personal growth and change which reflects God’s will and the Biblical base at GBC.

Christian Life Coaching

places specific emphasis on forward focus; discovering personal goals and taking action towards goal fulfillment. Clients partner with their certified coach for encouragement, action planning, and accountability.  It is a partnership, which can evolve into an ongoing relationship tailored to meet client needs.

Pastoral Counseling

at Branches extends available resources to the church community and is similar to what is provided by  any of the regular Pastoral staff at Gateway.

Clinical and Pastoral Counseling

services at Branches provide short-term assessment and counseling. Like coaching, this may help clients to discover and reach specific goals. Counseling is also designed to identify areas for deeper consideration or exploration. When such exploration is ongoing our counselors are qualified and able to offer that support or make suitable referrals to other appropriate professionals.








Ron Taylor

Pastoral Counselor and Coach-in-Training
Ron has served in Christian ministry for 40+ years as either a pastor in church settings, or in directing camps and retreats in camp settings.  He currently serves part-time at Mount Hermon Christian Camps.   Ron loves outdoor adventures, connecting with people from all walks of life, and assisting people to sort through the many factors affecting our circumstances and decisions in our lives in order to move forward with their dreams and goals.  As a Pastoral Counselor he seeks to walk alongside those who struggle toward gaining hope and strength through Jesus Christ.



Deborah Hertzler-Walters

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Deborah is a highly skilled clinician with over 30 years of experience working and teaching in the United States and Great Britain.  A Gottman-certified relational therapist, Deborah has been working with couples, individuals and families of all ages with major life transitions, conflict resolution, recovery from trauma, anger management, stress, anxieties, panic attacks, attention deficits, depressions, pain associated with medical conditions and she is EMDR certified.  Deborah is an Associate Professor of Psychology at Simpson University and an Adjunct Professor of Psychology at Palo Alto University.  She has been a Critical Incident Debriefing Clinical Director in Monterey, San Bonito and Santa Cruz Counties.  She and her husband Ken attend Twin Lakes Church, and are the proud parents of two adult sons, a daughter and son-in-law. They are joyously celebrating the recent birth of their second granddaughter.



Jo Romaniello

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Jo has gathered over 30 years of experience as a clinical counselor, supervisor, facilitator/trainer and educator in private practice, educational, or church settings. She serves as a mission consultant and adjunct professor for Pacific Islands University in Guam. Jo is an active member and trainer for the Red Cross disaster mental health team and is a facilitator working with military families. Jo and her husband share a love of music and serve together on the worship team at GBC. They also enjoy the unconditional love of two cats and a Chihuahua named Meshach.



Ron Marsh

Certified Life and Leadership Coach

Ron has over 20 years of ministry leadership experience in both small and large churches and has been coaching since 2004. As a coach, he has spent over 3000 hours walking alongside others, helping them live fully for Christ with purpose and passion. He is a Certified Christian Coach and Coach Trainer, a presenter of workshops on spiritual gifts, destiny discovery, stages in leadership formation, and more. He is the founder of LeaderMorph and Purpose Filled Ministries….and is currently serving at GBC as a class/workshop facilitator.



Allen Hankla

Pastoral Counselor

Allen has served 30 + years in Santa Cruz as a Clinical / Pastoral Counselor working with Families, Marriages, Children, and Individuals, who are wrestling with a wide variety of personal and interpersonal issues. He provides a safe and private place for you to explore and discover creative solutions to life’s challenges and personal dilemmas.
In addition to his counseling practice he conducts and organizes workshops and seminars on marriage enrichment, positive parenting, conflict resolution, making friends with loss and grief, and other common and practical life experiences.








  • Qualified Christian clinical counseling with trained professionals for adolescents, adults, individuals, couples, and groups.
  • Two free sessions to members of GateWay Bible Church or Baymonte Christian School.
  • Options to continue counseling on a sliding fee-for-service scale, or
  • Referral to a qualified counselor.
  • Group sessions and training seminars offered on a periodic basis.
  • Certified Christian coaching to encourage personal growth and accountability in discovering and fulfilling your God-given destiny.

We are here for you