At Hope Alive our purpose is to point people to Jesus!

Photo Credit:  Peter Hellberg

Tommy Cota, Senior Pastor

In Tommy’s young teenage years he started drinking alcohol, using drugs and hanging out on the streets in the city of Artesia, CA.  The life he was living led him into more darkness and ultimately 5 1/2 years of prison time in the California state prison system.  It was during this time that his wife, Diana, began praying for him, and soon after his release in January of 2000 he surrendered his life to Jesus Christ on June 11, 2000.  Tommy was so excited to live his life for the Lord that he enrolled in Calvary Chapel’s School of Ministry, and after graduating in 2004 he was brought on staff as an assistant pastor at Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa.  In February of 2014 Tommy took another step of faith when he began Hope Alive Church.  His heart is to reach the people of Santa Ana with the message of hope that is found in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Tommy and several other Pastors are featured in the movie The Neighborhood. For more information visit:

Tommy and his wife Diana have been married since 1990 and have three children, Tommy Jr., Isabella, and Jacquelyn.  Tommy and Diana’s daughter Isabella is married to Caleb Jackson and are grandparents to a beautiful little girl Ellie.  As a family, one of their favorite things to do is hang out, fellowship and laugh with other family members and friends and talk about Jesus—usually with lots of food and coffee.

If you'd like to connect with pastor Tommy please feel free to email him.

Photo Credit:  dimnikolov

Gabriel Nieves, Assistant Pastor

Gabriel Nieves was born and raised in the City of Santa Ana. At the age of 14 he joined a local gang and began living a life style of darkness that included drugs, alcohol, and violence. He was in an out of prison for a period of 7 years and was on a road that led to destruction.

On December 31, 2001 he was involved in a gang shooting and was arrested shortly there after. He soon realized the seriousness of his crime and found himself in the Orange County Jail fighting a life sentence. After a month of being incarcerated he was approached by a born again believer in Jesus Christ, that shared the love of God through the Gospel with him. So in that jail cell he rededicated his life back Jesus.

He was incarcerated for three years, but he used that time to dive deeper into Gods word and began to grow spiritually. After several miraculous events, He was release from prison!

Gabriel now serves at Hope Alive and has a desire to reach those that are living the lifestyle he once was a prisoner of, if you would like to find out more about Gabriel and his music visit

George Martinez, Pastoral Intern

My life can be summed up with one song, Amazing Grace! Born and raised in Santa Ana, at a very young age I was exposed to the street lifestyle of gangs,drugs and crime. Never realizing that those choices would put me on a path of bondage, heartache, and eventually many years in prison. But, what the devil meant for evil God used for good. It was there that He found me at my worst on March 14th, 2000 broken and without hope and He saved me. Since then my life has never been the same! I am so grateful and humbled that He has chosen to use my life as a message of his love and grace, a message I now have the privilege of taking back into the prisons…. Only God can work like that!! He gives beauty for ashes, grace for guilt, and blessings for brokenness. I’m so privileged to serve the Lord and His people along side the loving brothers and sisters at Hope Alive. God loves you too, and if He can change me and use a man like me, He can change you and use you too! Romans 5:20


Sipriano Trujillo, Youth Ministry Director


Valentine & Erica Garcia, Children's Ministry Director