Here at PUMC we have a wonderful staff working together in ministry for God and our church.
- Ministers: All the members of the Church.
- Pastors: Dan Hurlbert (senior pastor), Misty Howick (associate pastor) and Patti Blackwood
- Music Ministry: Jacob Gilbert (Director of Music Ministries) and Janet Moore (pianist)
- Office Staff: Gena Soileau (office manager), Kathie Mitchell (publisher), and Carol DeFore (office assistant)
- Pastoral Assistant (caregiving): Leigh Downing
- Custodian: Larry Keeter
Pastor Dan Hurlbert, Senior Pastor
We welcome Rev. Dan Hurlbert as our new senior pastor effective July 1, 2016. Dan comes to us from the Tempe First United Methodist Church on the campus of ASU where he has served for the last four years.
Dan’s first ministerial appointment was as the associate pastor at Prescott United Methodist church where he was responsible for the youth ministry and started the church’s Saturday evening service. Dan is overjoyed and humbled to be returning to Prescott and is looking forward to helping the church live into her next steps in ministry to the community and world. Known as a powerful story teller and thought provoking Biblically based preacher. Dan is passionate about helping each child of God achieve her or his potential. Dan enjoys teaching the Bible to people of all ages, making people laugh, and mentoring people into ministry. He believes that every single person is of value in the Kingdom of God and he believes his actions should tell that story more than his words.
Pastor Misty Howick, Associate Pastor
Misty Howick was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona and still enjoys tracking monsoon storms and the beautiful sunsets Arizona has to offer.
Misty received her Masters of Divinity degree at Drew Theological School in New Jersey, where she focused on camping and retreat ministries and had her eyes opened to social justice issues.
Misty and her husband Jeff lived in Japan for 4 years. She learned the arts of Ikebana (flower arranging), tea ceremony, pottery and origami while she was there. Misty has two wonderful, light-filled children Airi, her daughter, (whose name means love and community) loves to climb, draw, dance and can be seen monkeying on the handrails in church. Aki, her son, (whose name means autumn stars) loves cooking with Mama, telling stories and collecting rocks.
“I am drawn to interfaith collaboration in our community. It takes a village to support everyone. The stronger our village, the stronger we each are individually. I believe this is part of what Jesus tries to teach us about the Kingdom of God.”
Reverend Patti Blackwood, Minister of Congregational Care
Patti received a Master of Divinity from Claremont School of Theology in 2010. At Annual Conference in June of 2017, Patti was ordained as a Deacon in full connection in the United Methodist Church. As the Minister of Congregational Care, Patti serves the congregation and the community in areas of grief care. Soon after her graduation from seminary, Patti established an adult grief group and continues to facilitate grief groups that minister to church and community members. She is a certified grief counselor. She oversees the Stephen Ministry Program at PUMC and facilitates a weekly Women’s Bible Study. In the community, Patti helps facilitate Heart Song, a children’s bereavement program; volunteers as a chaplain at YRMC; and is a chaplain at a local hospice. Patti and her husband, Dan, lived in Phoenix and attended First UMC, Phoenix, for twenty-three years before moving to Prescott in 1999. During their years in Phoenix, she worked as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner for Maricopa County. She retired from nursing when they moved to Prescott. She then worked in retail until her call to ministry. Patti and Dan have a married daughter and a fourteen-year-old grandson who also live in Prescott.
Jacob Gilbert, Director of Music Ministries
Jacob Gilbert grew up in the mountains of North Carolina in the town of Andrews. He enjoyed playing sports throughout high school, but his biggest passion was music. Growing up in a Baptist church, he was involved with the Praise and Worship team, but also played the piano and organ as a substitute and sang in the choir. He attended several honors choirs on the local, regional, state, national, and continental levels
Jacob attended the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education. While attending college, he worked as the Choral Scholar at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church where his love of church music developed even further.
While he is not making music, Jacob enjoys hiking and camping, riding his motorcycle, and spending time with friends and family. He is very excited to be a member of the PUMC family!
Janet Moore, Church Accompanist
Janet Moore comes to us from Seattle, WA, where she lived for the last 30 years. Her native home is Silver City, New Mexico, where she earned her B.A. in Music Education with a piano and voice concentrate at Western New Mexico University, and then an M.A. from the University in New Mexico in Albuquerque with a piano concentrate. Janet has taught music from pre-school (Kindermusic) through college (University of New Mexico), has taught in public schools all ages at one time or at the other from kindergarten through high school, and has maintained a studio of piano students everywhere she has lived.
After becoming a Methodist in 1983 Janet was the Music Director at Farmington, New Mexico, Renton and Bellevue, Washington, as well as an Education Director at Seattle First United Methodist. She attended the Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University in Dallas two summers and got mid-way through a Masters in Church Music at Seattle Pacific University.
Janet has two grown children, Bryant and Chrissy, who live in California and Washington respectively. Moving back to the Southwest has been a dream of Janet’s for many years and she is delighted to be close to her mother and two sisters who live nearby. She looks forward to working and worshiping with the friendly congregation here at Prescott UMC.
Kathie Mitchell, Publisher
Her job focuses on preparation of the various publications – i.e., the weekly Reminder, monthly Preview, ads promoting the church that appear in the Daily Courier on Thursdays, etc. – and as such is a vital cog in the operation of the office staff.
That new face shining in our PUMC’s office complex belongs to Kathie Mitchell, who is a native-born Los Angeleno (a made-up term denoting her Los Angeles birthplace), but who has long since morphed into an Arizona sisterhood relationship. Yes, she confirms, “I’m a ‘Valley girl’ who grew up in California but have lived most of my life in Arizona,” which spans more than four decades, in that her arrival in the state came about in 1974.
Family-wise, Kathie and her husband Ron are the parents of a daughter, Karrie, in Tucson, and a son, Ryan, in Gilbert (Arizona reigns!), along with a granddaughter in Tucson. Kathie and Ron relocated to Prescott in 2012,
Gena Soileau, (pronounced “swallow”), Office Manager
Gena and her husband Jim moved to Prescott from Escondido, CA in July, 2011. Jim’s retirement from Northrop Grumman brought them to Prescott where they’ve quickly become a part of our community. Gena enjoys singing and being involved in our choirs and Gospel Band.
They both grew up in Slidell, Louisiana (just outside of New Orleans) and have known each other since grade school. They have one son, Bradley, who lives in La Mesa, California with his wife, Renee and their daughter, Leyla.
Having worked in administration for over 35 years, Gena definitely honed the skills she needs for her Office Manager position here at PUMC. Not only does she multi-task and organize the front office, she works closely with our pastors and staff, all our various committees and just about anyone who walks through our front doors. She has an infectious smile, a fun-loving and caring personality and a Louisiana accent that isn’t heard very often in this neck of the woods.
As Gena & Jim like to say, “Even though our roots are from Louisiana, we truly feel this is home.”
Carol DeFore, Office Assistant
Carol, a native of Kansas City, MO is a graduate of the University of Kansas in Lawrence, where she earned her degree in English education and performed graduate work in guidance counseling. She moved to Prescott four years ago from the seaside community of Marina del Rey in Los Angeles County, where she was active in commercial real estate industry, with her focus on leasing suites in high-rise office buildings in West Los Angeles.
Among the activities she enjoys outside her PUMC workplace are singing with the Prescott Chorale and spending time with her "little sister" from the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program.
Leigh Downing, Pastoral Assistant
Leigh Downing had been on staff as a Pastoral Assistant several years ago and states that she “is delighted to be serving the church again in this capacity.” For the past six years, she served as a Hospice Chaplain, earned a Specialty Certificate in Palliative Care Chaplaincy and became a Certified Master Chaplain through the American Board for Certification in Homeland Security. She volunteers as a Palliative Care Chaplain at Yavapai Regional Medical Center.
Leigh and her husband Sam moved to Prescott in 1988 and have been members of PUMC almost as long! They both play in the church's Gospel Band on Saturday evenings. Sam is a physician and serves at Yavapai Regional Medical Center as the Director of Outpatient Palliative Care Medicine. Leigh and Sam are very proud of their two adult children; Jeff and his wife live in Denver, Colorado and Kate is living in Portland, Oregon.
Larry Keeler, Custodian
Larry is originally from San Diego, California. He has 2 grown daughters, Sarah and Sheelah and a teenage son, Jacob. He and his wife, Helen, have been married 17 years and live in Paulden. For 10 years Larry was a commercial tuna fisherman and traveled all over the world. He previously owned a plumbing business for 14 years in Yuma, Arizona prior to moving to the Chino Valley area. So as you can see, Larry is not afraid of hard work.
Larry enjoys playing and coaching softball, loves the outdoors and has been camping and visiting the Prescott area for the past 10 years. We are very happy to have Larry as a part of our church staff.