BRIEFLY DESCRIBE YOUR JOB RESPONSIBILITIES: I am responsible for preparing the Sanctuary Choir for leading Worship in our traditional service. We rehearse each week on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 until 7:45pm. I have the joy of directing the Sanctuary Choir each Sunday morning as they sing a Choral Introit, Anthem and Benediction. I also lead the congregation in congregational singing each Sunday. I attend a worship planning meeting each week with Rev. Holly and Rev. Martin and then the full staff meeting which follows. I select the anthems, introits, and any music the choir sings each week, working to support the spoken word and scripture. I also have the pleasure of selecting music for our Christmas presentation and our annual Lessons and Carol Service.
WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND? I hold both a Bachelor of Music Education and a Master of Music Education from Murray State University. In addition, I have 30 hours above my Master’s with an emphasis in Choral Music Education. I taught choral music in two high schools in Paducah, KY for 18 years. During that time, I took my students to Europe on five concert tours. During one tour, we sang mass at the Vatican. In addition, the group made their Carnegie Hall solo debut in March of 2010. I have been involved in Church Music for over 45 years. I was the organist/music associate at Paducah First Baptist Church for 18 years, before becoming their Director of Music for another 6 years. In 2008, I took 50 members of the First Baptist Church choir to Romania for a week. Each night, we sang during their 4-hour church services and during the day, we did mission work. I also served as Director of Music for the Broadway United Methodist Church Paducah KY for 6 years before relocating here in Birmingham area in fall of 2018. In 2011, I was named the inaugural Outstanding Alum in Fine Arts at Murray State University. In addition, in 1999, I was named Outstanding High School Choral Director for Kentucky. That same year, I was named by the Music Educators National Conference as one of the top High School Choral Directors in the nation.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF YOUR JOB? I very much enjoy preparing the choir each week for worship. Being able to take a piece of music and bringing it to life is very exciting. The relationship that develops with the choir is a very special one for me. Being able to share good times and more difficult times with each other as a church and choir family is important. Finding music that enhances the scripture and message each week is very rewarding and can be challenging at times.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR FAMILY: Debbie and I have one daughter Nicole, who is married and has three children. Debbie and I are both retired educators and moved here from Paducah, Kentucky, where we were life-long residents. Our son-in-law was transferred here to his company’s corporate office, so we relocated here to be close to our grandchildren. I have one brother that lives in Kentucky and my mother resides in the same town as my brother.
FAVORITE THING TO DO AWAY FROM WORK? We love spending time with our three grandchildren and spending time on the beach enjoying the sun! The fact that our beach trip travel time has been cut in half is an added pleasure of residing in Pelham.