August 13, 2023
Seonwoo Lee Associate to Ridgewood UMC
Seonwoo Lee was born and raised in South Korea. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Methodist Theological University in Seoul, South Korea, and is currently pursuing a Master of Divinity at Drew Theological School. Seonwoo has experience in various areas of ministry, including education, media, and worship ministry. He taught children of all ages for six years in South Korea. He served as youth director at Woodbridge UMC for two years. He is passionate about preaching the gospel, educating the next generation, leading the praise team, and connecting with the community. He hopes we will love one another through them as God loves us all. He is married to his beautiful wife, Hayoung Lee.
Leslie Houseworth Fields to Christ Church UMC - Patterson
Reverend Leslie Houseworth was raised in Stone Mountain, Georgia. She has served churches in Georgia, South Carolina, New York, and New Jersey. Rev. Houseworth received her Bachelor of Arts in English Education from South Carolina State University. She earned the Master of Education in Administration and Supervision from Clemson University. After working as a high school English teacher, Rev. Houseworth enrolled in the Master of Divinity program at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology. Rev. Houseworth loves to serve. She also enjoys traveling, reading, and spending time with her children, Chloe and CJ.
May 14, 2023
Justin Spano to Augusta - Frankford Plains
Justin Spano first felt called to ministry at 5 years old. After joining The UMC of Lake Hopatcong in 2015, Justin became a certified lay servant. He has served there through preaching, children’s sermons, and worship assistant; and he has preached at other Skylands District churches, including serving monthly for the past year at First UMC in Dover, NJ. Justin is passionate about encouraging hope and leading people in growing as a community, engaging with the Bible, and prayer. He is currently a Master of Divinity student at Drew Theological School. Justin has an older brother and younger sister.
Ernie Williams to Budtown UMC
My life has been shaped by the church from the time I acknowledged God’s claim on my life. My preaching has been Word-based. Much of my ministry has been an attempt to take seriously what it means to be church. Pastoral care flows from both the Biblical mandate and the relational nature of the church community. Because God’s mission matters, the church always reaches beyond itself to share good news and serve both community and world. God is Love and Jesus Christ is God’s gift to us. That is why disciples of Jesus are committed to advancing the cause of love, and sharing grace as we work together to bring in God’s Kingdom of peace with justice!
Richard Romaro to Crosswicks UMC in addition to Trinity UMC in Bordentown
Rev. Dr. Richard Romero is currently serving Trinity UMC in Bordentown. He has led United Methodist churches since 2014. Dr. Romero is a former adjunct professor at Esperanza College and Eastern University. He received his BA from Montclair State University and MDiv., and doctorate from Drew University. Richard trained with the National Plan for Hispanic Ministry and Community Development/Church for All People. He is a Circuit Elder and a contributor to the Breakthrough series. Richard is a fully trained coach and has served the District and GNJ on conference committees, including DCOM, CRR, CCYM, PTF, and CFPAS.
Brenda Sclafford to St. Matthews UMC in Delair
Brenda Sclafford has a strong passion for the spiritual growth of persons of all ages through biblical knowledge and healthy relationships. Brenda enjoys spending quality time with family and friends and loves to travel. After twenty-seven years, Brenda retired as a Regional Services Consultant from Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., in March 2022. She is presently a Palmer Theological Seminary student pursuing a Master of Divinity degree. Brenda resides in Sicklerville, New Jersey, with her husband, Rev. Harry B. Sclafford, III.
Anson Wilson Atlantic City Circuit: Asbury UMC, Hamilton Memorial UMC and Venice Park UMC
Anson, a person of faith, believes that the Gospel is transformative; it can change individuals, communities and the world for the better. A demonstrated leader, he serves as a UMC Pastor of two churches, he also serves on the Greater New Jersey Board of Higher Education and Campus Ministries. He has led youth ministry in two United Methodist Churches and was leader for campus ministry at NJIT, Rutgers-Newark and Essex County College. An experienced worship leader and musician, he has served multiple churches for over ten years. In addition to playing the piano, guitar, and drums, he is a vocalist. Having a passion for business, economic empowerment, and education, Anson holds Bachelor Science in Finance from New Jersey Institute of Technology. Anson also has a Master of Divinity from Drew School of Theology.
Deanna Braithwaite-Mays ASSOCIATE Atlantic City Circuit: Asbury UMC, Hamilton Memorial UMC and Venice Park UMC
DeAnna Brathwaite Mays was born and raised in Atlantic City, New Jersey. She earned an undergraduate degree in Psychology from the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey (now Stockton University) and a Master of Divinity from Palmer Theological Seminary. DeAnna has worked as a Legal Assistant for the last 23 years. She has a heart for helping others and is passionate about youth ministry. DeAnna is devoted to her first ministry, her husband Anthony and daughter Kameryn. A self-proclaimed “foodie”, DeAnna enjoys visiting different restaurants and all things chocolate! She also enjoys reading. Her guiding scripture is 2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, of love and a sound mind”.
Danny Clark appointed to Pinelands UMC
Danny is a life long methodist from NJ. He grew up in Burlington County. Danny has been active in church leadership since he was sixteen. His time as a church leader has included being in choirs, youth leadership, preaching, and teaching Bible Study and Sunday School. He has also served in administrative council positions. Danny is enthusiastic about preaching and worship, Bible study and pastoral care. His wife of 17-year Robyn is also a pastor and has a nearby 2-point charge. Danny is an avid Marvel fan and loves to read. He also loves to spend time in God’s creation.
May 7, 2023
Dave Carber to Aldine UMC
Dave and his wife Cass have seven children and fourteen grandchildren. Dave does paint-by-number and jigsaw puzzles in his spare time. He is retired from managing a screen-printing business founded by his parents. Dave has attended Course of Study, has a BS degree in Biblical Studies and an MDiv from Palmer Seminary.
Dave was a youth leader in his home church for several years and led an evening worship service there. His first assignment was Asbury UMC in Swainton in 2009 and four months later was Assigned to Port Elizabeth UMC. In 2014 Dave moved to the merged charge of the Pinelands UMC in the Mullica River area.
James Murray to Broad Street UMC in Burlington
James was born and raised in Ormond Beach, Florida and nurtured in the Christian faith by his hometown United Methodist Church. He studied Economics at the University of Florida, planning to go to Law School, but heard God’s call towards ordained ministry within the UMC. After interning at his home church, he attended Duke Divinity School, where he received his Master of Divinity and met his wife, Katarina. After graduating, James served alongside his wife as an associate pastor at Jesse Lee Memorial UMC in Ridgefield, CT, after which James served as a chaplain resident at Danbury Hospital and as a hospice chaplain for Vitas Healthcare. James and Katarina spend their time with their joyful 2-year-old, Zooey, and loving dog, Sørine.
Kris Hansen to Califon UMC
Kris Hansen is a licensed local pastor who previously served in multiple leadership roles as a lifelong lay person. She was a Certified Lay Servant, Stephen Ministry Leader, and a member of the pastoral team regularly leading worship. Hansen is passionate about UMW/UWIF’s focus, and her heart is with all people seeking to know God’s love and grace. Her call to Methodist ministry is rooted in John Wesley’s understanding of prevenient, justifying, and sanctifying grace, supported by the Wesleyan Quadrilateral with a primary focus on Scripture. Hansen is a widow, mother, mother-in-law, and “Grammy” to her “rays of sunshine.” She has over 42 years of experience in the telecommunications Industry, and she now dedicates her life to pastoral ministry.
Andy Reif to Millville - Cumberland UMC and Port Elizabeth UMC
Andrew is a retired law enforcement professional who spent twenty of his twenty five years of service in various management positions. A life long Cumberland County resident, Andrew has a deep understanding of the needs of the community. A heart for the homeless and the food insecure, Andrew serves as the executive director of the Trinity First Hope Center located in Millville NJ.
Married to his high school sweetheart for more than forty years they have eight children and two grandchildren.
April 30th, 2023
Roeline Ramirez to Kenilworth - IGNITE
Roeline Ramirez’s passion for serving God started at 12 when she taught younger kids during Vacation Bible School. After that, she volunteered in various ministries at Obando Central UMC in the Philippines. She continued serving in New Jersey with her husband and children. As a faith leader, Roeline ministers to all ages through preaching, prayer, and teaching. She’s involved in children and youth ministries at Trinity UMC in Jersey City and First UMC in Union City. She is taking her Master of Divinity at Drew Theological School. Roeline loves writing poems and creating digital worship materials in her free time.
Henriella Griffin as Associate to Meadowlands Church Circuit
Henriella Charles Griffin was born in Limbe Haiti, November 5th from devoted late father, Pastor Vitey Charles and First Lady Jeanne Odernier. She is the ninth of ten children. She began her seminary journey by attending Juvenat College at the age of 19 years. She continued her studies in The United States of America, attending Kean University, and Drew University; Graduating with honors. She is mother to five loving children, and grand-mother of five children as well. Currently she advises foreigners in acclimation to overcoming the pressures of immigration. Her favorite past time is spending time with her grand-children.
Peggy Holder to Kearny - Grace in addition to Kearny - Calvary and Belleville - Wesley
Peggy’s devotion to kingdom-building and the belief in the care and wholeness of God’s people motivates her passion for God and the ministry! As a Basic Lay Servants’ instructor in the Meadowlands District, Lay Servants are encouraged to be faithful-creative workers for Christ. She serves at Calvary (Kearny) and Wesley (Belleville). Born in Barbados, she is a proud alumna (graduate) of Kingsborough and Baruch Colleges of the City University of NY and Drew Theological Seminary where she graduated with a Master of Divinity. Peggy is also the Director of Administration and Accounting for a non-for-profit in NYC. Along with being a die-hard Knicks fan, her two other greatest joys are her daughter Alexis and nephew Zachary.
Sung Woo Kim appointed to Lifegate UMC - Somers Point and Korean UMC of Southern New Jersey - Egg Harbor Township
Sungwoo Kim has served the Korean Methodist Church for over 10 years as a youth ministry pastor and associate pastor. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Methodist Theological University in Seoul, South Korea and is currently pursuing a Master of Divinity at Drew Theological School. Sungwoo was ordained by the Korea Methodist Church in 2017 and has experience in various areas of ministry including youth and adult ministry planning and design, as well as parish responsibilities. He is passionate about preaching and sharing encouraging messages, believing that the gospel can bring hope to life. Sungwoo also believes that through worship, serving, and love, people can become true disciples of Christ. He is married to his wife, Youngeun, and they have a daughter named Goeun.
Israel Gwatana to East Pennsauken UMC and Pennsauken UMC
My name is Israel Gwatana, born and raised in Nigeria. A graduate of ECWA Theological Seminary in Jos, Nigeria, and currently rounding up my MA in theological studies at Princeton Seminary. My wife’s name is Blessing, and we are blessed to have a beautiful daughter named Kulana. I love serving God’s people and have a strong desire to preach God’s Word. I love playing soccer and basketball.
Douglas Rea to Newfield - First UMC
Pastor Doug is a retired Elder (July 2019) who has served the former SNJAC and the GNJAC for 23 years. Through his ministry he has connected local churches to their communities by opening food pantries, moving worship outdoors into public areas (beachside, parks), and holding community based events. Pastor Doug’s passion is for preaching which he engages with imagination and joy. Developing sermon series is one of his favorite pastoral tasks. Pastor Doug has served as an NCD coach, Clergy and Candidacy Mentor, Police Chaplain, and as a Board member of Camps and Conferences. Pastor Doug is and his wife Lisa will be married 49 years this August. They have two grown children and three grandchildren.
Shirley Goodman to Clarksboro - Evangelical UMC
Shirley is a retired elder in the Church of the Nazarene, having served in Vineland, NJ, Philadelphia PA, and West Chester, PA. For five years she was Urban Missions Director for Philadelphia and Camden counties. Most recently, she served as interim preaching pastor at the Bel Air, then Rising Sun, churches in Maryland. Before ministry, Shirley owned and operated a sales and customer service training and consulting business. She holds a B.A. in Organizational Management and an M.A. in Organizational Leadership from Eastern University. Shirley and her husband Ron have three children, five grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.
I Charles Gates to Quinton UMC and Hancock's Bridge UMC
As an ordained elder in the Church of the Nazarene, Dr. Gates served as pastor, missionary and associate professor over the past 45 years. Dr. Gates has made his mission to mentor, disciple and develop leaders who have gone into fulltime Christian service. He has served as pastor for more than 35 years and 10 years as a missionary to the Republic of South Africa. He has a passion for lifelong learning and has focused on continuing his education throughout his career. He is a churchman who believes that the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Holiness message is the most relevant message for our world today.
April 23, 2023
Dongkue Jee appointed to Mendham (in addition to his existing appointment to Morristown Korean UMC)
Dongkue Jee was born and raised in South Korea. He holds an M.Div from Methodist Theological School in South Korea, as well as a Master of Church Ministries from Perkins School of Theology in Dallas, Texas. He is currently serving at Morristown Korean UMC and will continue to do so in his new appointment. Dongkue is passionate about preaching, teaching, and nurturing ministries. He and his wife Jooree have two sons, Moses and Phillip. In his free time, he enjoys playing tennis and spending time with family and friends.
Yong-il Lee appointed to Lyndhurst UMC (in addition to Livingston Korean UMC)
Rev. Lee Yong-il was ordained in the Korean Methodist Church at its Seoul Annual Conference in April 2018. Prior to his arrival to the United States, he served as an intern pastor and assistant pastor for youth and young adults at Sangdong Korean Methodist Church for seven years. After immigrating to the United States, he was appointed to Livingston Korean UMC in 2021, where he has been ministering to the members with love. The church members deeply value family, and LKUMC has grown despite the pandemic. In his free time, he enjoys woodworking and car repair, and occasionally participates in marathons. He happily shares his life with his beloved wife, Kelly, and their one-year-old child, Hesed.
Daekyung Ko appointed as co-pastor to Green Village UMC through Mosaic Ministries
Daekyung Ko, a native of South Korea, is currently pursuing his M.Div at Drew Theological School in New Jersey, driven by a lifelong passion for ministry and a deep-rooted desire to make a positive impact on the world. Daekyung’s family spent eight years in the Philippines from 1997 to 2005, dedicating themselves to serving those in need through medical treatment, education, and building churches. Daekyung served as a youth pastor, army assistant chaplain, and media intern at ChungDong First Methodist Church in Korea from 2014 to 2022. Through God’s boundless grace and love, Daekyung is called to support and care for the community, using digital ministry and pastoral care to spread the love of Jesus and transform lives. Daekyung’s ultimate goal is to be a bridge of love and healing, shining a light on God’s unconditional love and inspiring others to join in creating a better, more loving world.
Jacqualine Chipongo appointed as Associate Pastor to Park UMC through Mosaic Ministries
My name is Jacqualine Chipongo. I am from Zimbabwe. I am currently in my second year of my M. Div at Drew University. I worked in the education sector for ten years and have experience with children from Elementary to High school. In Zimbabwe, I worked with Non Governmental organizations to identify and provide help to the vulnerable children from the community I was teaching. I was also a guidance and counseling teacher. My passion is to preach and teach the word of God so that it can reach the youngest child. I love working with children because they give me an opportunity to keep my level of energy high. I am married to Innocent Tsungu and we have three children; Nigel Tatenda Tsungu (13), Chantell Ropafadzo Tsungu (11), and Nicole Anotidaishe Tsungu (5).
Nehemiah Thompson appointed to Neshanic UMC in Branchburg
Retired elder and member of greater New Jersey annual conference. Born and raised in India and appointed to serve in the United Methodist Church in the year 1982 at Troy Annual Conference and the credentials recognized by Troy conference and later transferred to former Northern New Jersey Annual conference. Served two churches in Troy conference and 4 churches in greater New Jersey. Married to Sheela Thompson and they have three children, Nithin, Nisha and Pravin. Nehemiah conducts a home for destitute children and orphans in India and visits that home twice a year.
David Kim appointed to Farmingdale UMC West Farms and Asbury Park UMC in Ballard
David Kim is a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ called to pastoral ministry and an MDiv student at Princeton Theological Seminary. He prays that it is Christ working in him as he begins his journey of pastoral ministry. David longs to witness people love and worship God as they come into communion with the Living Christ. In fear and trembling, David is ready to boldly spread the good news of Christ risen to all. Although he is just beginning his pastoral ministry, David praises the Lord for all He will do with David for the good of all who love the Lord.
David Lehmkuhl appointed to Barryville UMC
As a youth of the 60’s, David was impressed seeing clergy on the front pages of newspapers working to end racism and the Vietnam war; and seeing the church feeding the hungry in developing nations around the world. These experiences led the teenage David to believe the church could be a force for good in the world. He still believes it, because he believes in a joyful faith anchored in the power and love of Jesus Christ. David’s degrees include the Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and Religion, Master’s Degrees in Divinity and Political Science, and the Doctor of Ministry.
David and Nishat are the proud parents of one daughter, Alia, her husband, Ryan, and grandparents to an aspiring toddler, Emrys.
After serving churches in Dunellen, Linden, Montgomery, Succasunna and Somerville, David retired in 2021 to his hometown, Sparta, NJ. His new hobbies include cooking, fitness, and playing with his grandson. He also loves rock music, fast boats and classic cars. Though David, Nishat, and their two dogs have enjoyed the past two years of happy retirement at Lake Mohawk, he is excited to return to ministry with the people of the Barryville UMC.
Gerarlo Oviedo appointed to Nuevo Nacimiento UMC Paterson
Gerado was born in San Jose, Costa Rica. He arrived in the United States in 1999 and built a successful construction business. Gerardo received the call to pastoral ministry while serving as the Hispanic / Latin music director at the United Methodist Church of Bound Brook. Gerardo plans to attend Garrett’s Theological Seminary Course of Study. Gerard enjoys music, writing poems, and working on finishing his book on worship. He has been married to Paola since 2016 and has two adult children living in California.
Hyunsook Song appointed to Trinity UMC Merchantville
Hyunsook Song is a passionate United Methodist Pastor who has spent over 20 years in ministry at various ministries including children’s ministry, women’s ministry, music ministry and outreach programs. She has served the First Korean UMC of Cherry Hill from 2014 as an associate pastor. She has a background in Education(M.Ed) and holds M.Div from South Korea and 2nd M.Div from Drew Theological School. She is passionate about delivering the Gospel, sharing the love of God, showing compassion, educating the next generation, and connecting with communities. She lives with her husband Ho Jun, and 16-year-old daughter, Christina. Hyunsook enjoys singing, reading, badminton, and walking.
Tori Flath appointed to Strathmere UMC
Tori Flath has served as a pastor at Minotola UMC for six years, four of which she also served at Piney Hollow UMC. She is a graduate of Stockton University where she majored in Literature Education and minored in Ancient Greek. Presently, she also works as a high school English teacher and volunteers with Stockton’s apologetics club. Last year, she and her husband welcomed their son, Levi.
Jeanette M. Block appointed to Minotola UMC
Jeanette M. Block is a retired Elder as of 2021. She has served several churches in the GNJAC as well as conference and district committees and is a trained leadership coach. Jeanette has also been actively involved in the communities to which she has been appointed. She has a BA from Rutgers-Camden, and an M.Div. from Wesley Theological Seminary. Rev. Block’s first appointment was in 2000 as the assistant pastor to the Pinelands Charge and she retired from Cape May UMC. Jeanette is married to Ronald, and has 3 grown children and five grandchildren.
Gerald Muller appointed to New Hope UMC in Millville
Gerald Muller is employed as a Licensed Professional Counselor for Time to Heal Counseling. Prior to beginning a career in human services, he worked in the corporate world while earning a MA Counseling from Montclair State University. Gerald is currently attending Drew University School of Theology working toward his Master of Divinity Degree. Gerald lives with compassion for all children of God and enjoys meeting people exactly where they are in life and sharing the Gospel according to the needs of individuals and/or groups. Gerald loves the outdoors and spending time in nature. Gerald and his wife will be re-locating to Millville with their two sons Matthew and Nicholas.
Maurice Brown appointed to Parkside UMC in Camden
Maurice E. Brown is a retired local pastor who is excited to have the opportunity to share his spiritual gifts with the good people at Parkside. His passions are preaching, teaching, and pastoral care. Maurice is a lifelong resident of Southern New Jersey, and a third-generation Methodist Pastor. In 1971, he was drafted into the U.S. Army where he spent 9 years serving his country both stateside and abroad. Following this, he spent 37 years working for different branches of the Federal Government. He yielded to the call into ministry while a member of Good Shepherd UMC in Willingboro and was licensed to pastor in 1992. Pastor Brown went on to serve for 18 years at various appointments throughout South Jersey. He is currently a member of Asbury Community Church a Methodist Ministry, in Woodlynne where he assists Pastor Blackwell, serving in various leadership roles. He has two grown children and four grandchildren. He is thankful for the prayers and support of his wife Dawn.
Douglas Goldsborough appointed to John Wesley UMC in Bridgeton
Douglas A. Goldsborough, ministry is a second career for Doug. Having worked in corporate for thirty-five years and serving in the US military as a member of USMC a Viet Nam veteran and member of the NJ Army National Guard for 22 years. After serving in many tasks in the church heard the call into pastoral ministry graduated from Wesley Theological Seminary COS and then the Advance COS at Duke Divinity. Doug has been in part-time ministry since 1996 and full-time ministry since 2005, retiring 2022.
Doug has a great love for serving people and teaching the Word of God. He has spent countless hours learning and preaching across the country and the connection. He has served on many boards within the conference.
Doug and his wife Joann have four children and one grandchild. They enjoy traveling around the country with family and friends. Doug has a love for fine food and fine dining. He has a passion for grilling and smoking meats for family and friends. Philadelphia sports teams are a must at all times.
George Lagos appointed to Franklinville UMC in addition to Plainville UMC
George Lagos is a Licensed Local Pastor since 2020. Starting in 2016 George was assigned as a Supply Pastor to the Plainville UMC, Franklinville. He is the Local Pastor at Plainville and in 2021 was also assigned to the Newfield UMC. Prior to ministry he worked for UPS, Verizon and IBM. Then opened a Computer Repair business which he has run since 2009. George is a Church Planter, loves studying and teaching the bible, has a heart for mission work and building Sunday Schools. Loves visiting members and helping them grow their faith in God. He is married to Andrea for 36 years and has four sons; Charlie, Timmy, Cristian and Daniel. Their happy place is Ocean City,NJ.
April 16, 2023
Jong Nam Kim to Paramus - Arcola Korean UMC
Jong Nam Kim was born in South Korea and spent 19 years in the countryside, which he still cherishes. He earned a B.A in Public Administration and Law from Korea University, an M.Div. & STM from Drew Theological School, and continued his studies in Th. D in Pastoral Counseling at Yonsei University. During his chaplaincy and CPE training at Overlook Medical Center, he was blessed with the birth of his two children, and he remains grateful to the hospital. He has served in various churches in the New York, New Jersey, Virginia, and Korea; focusing on preaching, Bible study, and pastoral care and counseling. He is committed to the UMC mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. He is married to his wife Eunjung, a teacher and counselor, and they have a daughter, Grace, and a son, Justin.
Eusun Kim to Woodbridge UMC
Eusun Kim is honored to have served as a pastor since 1994 in various congregational settings. He draws inspiration from his pioneering parents, Bishop Hae-Jong Kim and Wha-Sei Park, who are the source of his Christian formation. He is blessed with three ladies in his life: his wife and ministry partner Jayoung, and daughters Sofia and Gabrielle (as well as their two cats). Eusun serves as the Chaplain alongside his fellow brethren of the Blue Knights NJ XV, a law enforcement motorcycle club, and is proud to be a member of the Skylands Walk to Emmaus community. His interests include traveling with Jay, motorcycle touring, and jamming. He counts on the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ!
Brenda Wheeler Ehlers to First UMC in Montclair
Rev. Ehlers began her ministry as Morrow Church’s Director of Educational Ministries, where she combined her passion for the highest-quality religious education and her commitment to help people live out their faith. After ordination, she was appointed as their Associate Pastor for Children, Youth and Education Ministries. Rev. Ehlers also established the SOMA Center for Peace and Justice, a ministry for restorative justice, to divert youth from the criminal justice system, where she is a restorative practice trainer. She successfully completed 3 units of clinical pastoral education at Morristown Medical Center focusing on hospice and palliative care patients.
At Morrow Church, Rev. Ehlers supported the youth ministry, education programs and spiritual care efforts that immerse adults, children, and youth in a faith built on service, learning, worship, and spiritual practices. She has developed a robust pilgrimage program for youth and families as they explore sacred spaces where the work of the church meets the needs of the world.
Rev. Ehlers and her husband Bill have three children: Charlie and his wife Juliet; Jane and her fiance Jason; and Harry as well as their two dogs, Benny and Angus.
Isaac Minkah to Park Avenue St. John’s UMC in East Orange through Mosaic Ministry
Isaac Minkah is a pastor from Ghana, West Africa who currently resides in the United States. He is a devoted husband and father to two boys. Minkah is currently pursuing an M.Div at Drew Theological School in Madison, New Jersey. He has a great passion for spreading God’s word and sharing his faith in Christ with others. Minkah believes in the Bible as the word of God and is dedicated to learning and sharing the love of God with others. He is a man of prayer, faith, and belief in miracles, and has a strong desire to unite people and spread the gospel of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
Clark Callender to First UMC in Scotch Plains
Rev. Clark Lynn Callender is a fourth-generation United Methodist pastor who has served in the GNJAC since 1990. He received his undergraduate degree, a Bachelor of Music in Clarinet Performance, from the Manhattan School of Music, and his graduate degree, a Master of Divinity, from Princeton Theological Seminary. His wife, Irene, is a concert pianist and piano teacher; he has two daughters: Samantha and Rachel, and a son-in-law: Matthew. Rev. Callender’s hobbies include music, auto restoration, and cycling.
HaYoung Kang to Wesley UMC in Phillipsburg
HaYoung Kang is a third-generation Methodist who believes in the transforming, liberating, and life-giving love of God. She received a B.A. in Theology and Communications from Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea, and an M.Div. from Drew Theological School. Currently, she is pursuing her Ph.D. in Theological and Philosophical Studies in Religion at Drew University’s Graduate Division of Religion. Prior to coming to the U.S., HaYoung served in children’s ministry and music ministry in Methodist churches in Incheon, South Korea. After moving to NJ, she has been deeply involved in the life and ministry of Morristown United Methodist Church, where she served as a student intern from 2018 to 2019 and has been leading the Sunday School ministry since 2022. HaYoung enjoys listening to rock-n-roll music and practicing Taekwondo.
Kevin Davis to Belford UMC in addition to Simpson UMC Old Bridge
Kevin Davis is a second career pastor having answered the call to pastoral ministry while serving as a law enforcement officer. Kevin graduated from the Course of Study at Wesley Theological Seminary and has been in pastoral ministry since 2000.
Kevin is a high energy pastor with a passion for worship and teaching. Kevin has been serving his various communities as a volunteer firefighter and a police and fire service Chaplain, along with being a disaster response coordinator in the conference.
He enjoys engaging with the community and has a love of all God’s people. Pastor Kevin, or “PK” loves the outdoors and being in God’s creation. He is an avid backyard chef and enjoys grilling and cooking for family and friends. He is also an avid fisherman who enjoys bowling and golf. He is married to Susan and they have four children.
Peter Mantell to Sergeantsville UMC in addition to Frenchtown and Kingwood UMCs
Peter Mantell is a second-career pastor, having spent 30+ years as a Business Analyst, Information Security Analyst, and Microsoft Excel expert. At age 45, he started his college career earning an Associates from Centenary University, a BS from Eastern University, and his M.Div. from Drew Theological SChool.
Peter has served both Frenchtown and Kingwood UMCs since 2014 and has a passion for building a church that empowers disciples to support and defend the most vulnerable.
Peter and his wife Anna have three amazing children and three even more amazing grandchildren Emmett, Joshua, and Riley.
Young Cheol Jun to Appenzeller Nairi UMC
Young Cheol Jun, a native of South Korea, earned his M.Div from Methodist Theological School in South Korea and pursued his Doctor of Ministry at New York Theological Seminary. He has served as a lead pastor at the True Light KUMC and as an associate pastor at Korean Community of NJ in Englewood and the Westwood UMC. His passion lies in preaching and teaching the word of God, with a particular fondness for John 10:10b, which says, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” Young Cheol and his wife, Youngmi, have been blessed with two daughters.
Michael Young Kim to St. Pauls UMC Bayhead and Central UMC Point Pleasant
Michael Kim is an experienced United Methodist pastor who has been serving churches since 1997, with nearly twenty years of full-time pastoral ministry. Prior to his ministry, he worked as a social worker. He has a passion for preaching, teaching, pastoral care, hospice ministry, and vibrant outreach to marginalized communities.
Michael has received ecclesiastical endorsement for prison ministry and currently volunteers at Newark and Rahway State Prisons. He holds an M.Div from NYTS.
Michael has served at various United Methodist churches, including Korean Community Church, Dingmans Ferry, Waldwick, Fair Haven and Oceanport, Roseland United Methodist Church, and Hope Center in Fairfield, NJ. He enjoys playing tennis, golf, jogging, walking, and hiking. Michael and his wife Rachel have three adult daughters. In 2022, they celebrated their first grandson’s first birthday, making the year particularly special for them.
David Gaitan to Trinity UMC in Ewing
David Gaitán was born in Bogotá, Colombia. He has worked as a journalist, radio and television producer, media editor, and graphic designer. Also, he has been an international consultant on communication, social media, leadership, and theological issues.
His influence has been spread throughout Latin America and the United States through his articles and essays (mainly in Spanish) in which he has approached social topics of the 21st century. Also, he served as pastor in his city, Bogotá, for 8 years.
His research and journalistic contributions have added voices to the political, theological, and social discussion in the places where he is consulted, raising important questions regarding human behavior and proposing evaluation topics to improve communities. He is the author of the book “Inmersion”, in which he reflects on some Latin American Contextual Theologies. Currently, David is serving as a Seminarian at Chatham UMC, while he finishes his Master of Divinity at Drew University Theological School in May 2023. He is the father of a six-year-old girl, Laura Camila.
April 2, 2023
Adrian Mendoza appointed to Roseland UMC
Pastor Adrian holds a bachelor’s degree in human biology from the Philippines and is graduating with a Master of Divinity from Drew Theological School. He has served alongside marginalized communities in Zambia and the Philippines as a Global Missions Fellow and has been on mission trips in Hong Kong and South Korea. In the Philippines, he served a mission church and worked as Executive Director of an organization that cares for abandoned children with special needs. He currently serves as a pastor at Green Village UMC.
Pastor Adrian is deeply passionate about journeying with all of God’s creation to discover the sacredness of all life and the divinity of our connectedness. He finds joy and sabbath rest in exploring new places and cultures and spending time in nature.
ChangYong Shin appointed to Bayville Faith Community and Lakehurst Community UMC
ChangYong Shin is a committed pastor with extensive experience in pastoral ministry and theological education. He received his Master of Divinity from Drew Theological School in January 2021 and obtained his Local Pastor License on April 17, 2021. He has served in various roles, including as a Liturgy/Worship research assistant and pastoral intern at Drew Theological School, Christian Education Minister at Woodbridge UMC, and as lead pastor of First United Methodist Church of Montclair and Verona since July 2021. Prior to coming to the United States, ChangYong served as a staff member for the English Ministry of ChungDong First Methodist Church in Seoul, Korea and as a Youth pastor at Kun-Bit Methodist Church in Yong-In, Korea. He is married to Hanna(Haneul) Chae, and they have a cat named Lana. His pastoral vision is for the church to become one body of Christ in unity, serving neighbors and walking toward justice as Jesus’ hands and feet.
Daewoung Jo appointed to Highland Park and Warren - Mt. Horeb
Daewoung, a native of Incheon, South Korea, is dedicated to fostering exceptional worship experiences and nurturing the growth of young followers of Jesus Christ. He brings over eight years of experience as an associate pastor at Calvary Korean UMC in East Brunswick, New Jersey. Daewoung holds a Master of Divinity from Drew Theological School, a Master of Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, and is set to complete his Doctor of Ministry from Drew in May 2023. Adept at grilling and building computers, he is happily married to Gihyun and a proud father of two children, Haru and Hanee.
Jacqueline Pillot appointed to Teabo UMC
Jacqueline (Jacki) Pillot, originally from Western New York, holds a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies and Gender Studies from West Virginia Wesleyan College, and an M.Div from Drew University Theological School, where she met her husband, Pedro Pillot. They have been married for five and a half years and have three daughters: Elba, Lydia, and Ana. Jacki has been in ministry in GNJ since 2016, when she served as a student intern through Mosaic Ministries in the Northern Shore. After graduating from Drew in 2017, she was appointed to Wennonah and New Sharon UMCs. In 2019, she was appointed to Trinity UMC where she has been serving since. Jacki is passionate about ensuring that believers of all ages feel welcome in worship. She is excited to see where God takes her and her family in this new season.
Jeanette Zajac appointed to UMC of Mt. Tabor
Jeannette Zajac believes that church is family, and her passions include outreach, mission work, visiting with the homebound, and working with youth. She looks forward to using her spiritual gifts with the church family at Mount Tabor UMC. She is currently employed as a computer engineer. Jeannette completed two bachelor’s degrees, one in Health and Physical Education teaching and the other in Computer Science. She holds two master’s degrees, one in Software Engineering and an M.Div. from Drew. When time permits, Jeannette enjoys spending time with friends and family. She is a happily married child of God, blessed with a beautiful daughter Katherine and a wonderful son Thomas, with a grandchild on the way.
Veronica Palmer appointed to the Meadowlands Church Circuit which includes East Orange, RISE; Park Ridge, Roselle, Rutherford and Passaic - First
Veronica Palmer is an adaptable, highly motivated and forward-thinking individual with an excellent work ethic and a servant’s heart. Her ministry focuses on coaching, leadership development, and maintaining meaningful Christ-centered relationships with people at all levels of the church and community. Veronica is a graduate of Wesley Theological Seminary (D. Min); Princeton Theological Seminary (Th. M) and Canada Christian College and School of Graduate Theological Studies (M. Div). She has served as an Associate Dean of New Brunswick Theological Seminary, as the Raritan Valley District Superintendent, and as pastor of several churches, including Norton & Glen Gardner, Perth Amboy: Simpson, Highland Park: Trinity, and East Orange: Calvary Roseville now known as Rise Church. Veronica enjoys eating good food and traveling. She loves to spend time with her dog, Jean-Pierre.
Vincent Frunzi appointed to Trinity UMC of South Amboy & Sayreville in addition to Sayreville UMC
Rev. Vincent F. Frunzi Jr. is a United Methodist pastor who’s calling to ministry started in his teenage years when he made a commitment to Jesus Christ. He received a BA degree in Christian Ministries from Messiah College in 2000 and graduated from New Brunswick Theological Seminary in May 2010.
Rev. Frunzi has served as youth pastor of Calvary Korean UMC in East Brunswick and pastor of Sayreville UMC. He has worked as a social worker at Fountain House in New York City, an agency that works with people with severe and persistent mental illness, and later worked at the Division of Youth and Family Services. Rev. Frunzi’s dedication to pastoral ministry, passion for social justice, and experience in social work have shaped his ministry and led him to bring the kingdom of God to daily life and experience.
Yeeun Kim appointed to Community Church of Hoboken as a part of Mosaic Ministry
Yeeun Kim, a native of South Korea, is currently pursuing a Master of Divinity degree at Drew Theological School in New Jersey. She serves as a media technician at Drew Chapel interns as a media assistant at Denville Community United Methodist Church. Yeeun’s passion is to spread the word of God and promote intergenerational worship experiences in the church. She intends to use her digital ministry skills to create a welcoming environment in the church that allows people of all generations to connect with God beyond time and place. As a compassionate church leader with a gift for pastoral care, Yeeun aims to “become a bridge” between people and God through ministry.
March 26, 2023
Donald Stevens appointed to Asbury UMC - Woodstown and St. John's UMC - Harrisonville
Don is a second career pastor and lifelong resident of New Jersey. He holds an M.Div from Eastern Seminary and a bachelor’s degree from Thomas Edison University. Over the past twenty years, Don has served in various churches throughout Gloucester, Salem, and Ocean counties within the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference. He and his wife Bonnie have four children ranging in age from 10 to 38, three of whom are adopted through the foster system. Don loves finding God in unexpected places, especially in popular culture. He’s a diehard fan of the Flyers and the Eagles, but his favorite team is the one on which his son plays.
Woo Lim Kwak appointed to Thiells Garnerville UMC
Woo Lim Kwak, a native of South Korea, holds a bachelor’s degree in Theology from Methodist Theological University in South Korea and an M.Div. from Drew Theological Seminary. He spent a year as a youth missionary in Korr, Kenya, cooperating with Korean Food for Hungry International in 2016. Following his mission, he served as a youth preacher at Hannam-dong Korean Methodist Church in Seoul until June 2019.
In 2020, he interned at Covenant United Methodist Church in Plainfield, NJ. He currently serves as a student assistant pastor at the United Methodist Church in Madison, NJ, co-leading and assisting the church’s ministries with the lead pastor since June 2021.
March 19, 2023
Jisu Ahn has been appointed to Community UMC - Roselle Park
Jisu Ahn was born in South Korea and spent much of his youth in New Zealand. After returning to Korea, he earned a B.A. in Counseling from Handong Global University and an M.Div. from Methodist Theological University in Korea. He continued his studies at Drew Theological School, where he earned a second M.Div. and is currently pursuing his D.Min.
With over five years of experience as a youth pastor at Arcola Korean UMC, Jisu was appointed as an associate pastor in 2020. He is dedicated to preaching, discipleship, and pastoral care. Jisu is married to his wife Seonah, a fellow UMC candidate for ordained ministry, and together they have a 7-year-old daughter, Yoojin. In his free time, Jisu enjoys playing tennis, basketball, and any sport that involves a round ball.
YoungHak Lee has been appointed to Paoli UMC (PA)
YoungHak Lee (he/him/his) is a passionate United Methodist minister who has spent 12 years in various ministries, including Army chaplaincy, campus ministry, youth and children’s ministry. He has lived in South Korea, India, the Philippines, and the U.S. and received theological education from Drew Theological School and Yale Divinity School. Since 2020, he has been serving Trinity UMC in South Amboy, NJ. Witnessing the transformative power of the gospel firsthand, he strives to create a Christ-centered and Spirit-led faith community that embraces people of all backgrounds and beliefs. His ultimate goal is to spread the love of Jesus Christ and bring hope, healing, and transformation to people’s lives.
Nicole Hamilton has been appointed to Atlantic Highlands Naversink UMC
Born and raised on the Jersey Shore, Nicole graduated from Duke Divinity School with a Master of Divinity degree in 2021, while serving a two-point charge in the North Carolina Conference. Nicole moved to GNJ in 2021 and began serving at St. Paul’s in Bay Head. She was commissioned as a Provisional Elder in 2022. Nicole loves spending time with family and friends, making music, reading, spending time in God’s creation with her dog, Lilo, and continuing to live into her call. She is passionate about loving God, loving others, and making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.”
Andrew Maggs has been appointed to St. Andrews UMC - Spring Lake
Andrew is set to graduate from Drew Theological School in May 2023 with a Master of Divinity and a Graduate Certificate in Restorative Justice and Prison Ministry. His passion for social justice grew from his belief that God’s love and grace are available to all, regardless of their past, present, or future. Prior to attending seminary, Andrew graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Georgian Court University, where he currently serves on the Alumni Advisory Council for the School of Business and Digital Media. In his free time, Andrew can be found singing loudly in the car or watching Star Wars.
Pedro Pillot has been appointed to First UMC - Blairstown
Pedro Antonio Pillot was born in Philadelphia and lived there until his family moved to South Jersey at age 12. He attended Drew University’s College of Liberal Arts in Madison, NJ, where he received a B.A. in Comparative Religion in 2013. He then attended Drew University Theological School where he received an M.Div. in 2016. Since then, Pedro has served as pastor of four churches. He has a passion for teaching and preaching, and a special love for studying the scriptures. He is married to Jacqueline Pillot, who is also a pastor, with whom he has three young children.
Hyekyung Pauline Kang has been appointed to Branchville UMC
Hyekyung “Pauline” Kang is a second-generation Methodist pastor with extensive experience serving as pastor-in-charge in various churches, including Mt. Horeb in Warren, Asbury in Woodstown, and Trinity in Marmora. Her teaching experience includes positions at New York Theological Seminary and Methodist Theological University in Seoul, Korea. Pauline holds a B.A. in English Literature, an M.A. in Christian Education from Ewha Women’s University, an M.Div. from Drew Theological School, a Th.M. in Pastoral Care and Counseling from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in Leadership from Fordham University. She is passionate about pastoral care and the teaching ministry of the church. In her free time, Pauline enjoys traveling and watching movies.
Rene Pak has been appointed to Whiting UMC
Rene Yon Pak is a bi-cultural and bi-lingual Korean-American. She has been serving cross-cultural appointments throughout her ministry in both suburban and rural churches in northern NJ and Rockland County, NY. She is currently serving Faith Community UMC in Bayville and Lakehurst UMC in Lakehurst. She has a M.Div. from Drew Theological School and a B.A. from Rutgers University. She enjoys walking, hiking, bicycling and yoga. She has been a long distance walker since walking the pilgrimage route of the Camino de Santiago (The Way of St. James) both in Spain and Portugal.
Jin Oh has been appointed to First UMC - Vineland
Despite serving as an elder in various UMC churches for the last 22 years, Jin Oh continues to discover that God’s ministry is full of mystery, without a one-size-fits-all formula. He is eager to learn how to better serve each day so that all things are done for the glory of God. Jin has been in ministry with diverse groups of people, from young families to seniors of various cultural backgrounds. Jin seeks to pursue a passion for Christ and compassion for others. His strengths lie in passionate preaching, pastoral counseling, creative art forms, gentle shepherding, small group ministry, and outreach to those in need. Jin’s wife, Nicole, currently serves at Fourth UMC in Millville.
(Trinity College BA, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School M.Div.)
Minho Cho has been appointed to First Korean UMC - Cherry Hill
Minho Cho is an experienced pastor who has served in various churches, including Arcola Korean UMC, Appenzeller Memorial Nairi UMC, and Mendham UMC. He has a background in education, having taught college students in Korea and Myanmar. Minho is passionate about his ministry and gifted in delivering insightful sermons, showing compassion to others, listening to their needs, cooperating with them, and being diligent in his work. He enjoys various hobbies such as tennis, wood crafting, walking, napping, and enjoying a cup of coffee while speculating about life. He is a devoted husband to his wife Sooheui Kim and a loving father to their two children, Andrew and Hana.
March 12, 2023
Jaeyoun Kim has been appointed to Teaneck UMC
Jaeyoun Kim was born in Seoul, Korea. She has served as an associate pastor at Eunpyung Methodist Church in Seoul, as a children’s pastor at Francis Asbury-National Korean UMC in Rockville, MD, as lead pastor at Union Grove & Willow Grove UMC in Pittsgrove, NJ, and as senior pastor at Thiells Garnerville UMC since 2018. She holds a B.Th. and Th. M. from Methodist Theological Seminary in Seoul, Korea, and an M.Div. from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. Jaeyoun was ordained as a full connection elder at the Seoul Annual Conference of the Korean Methodist Church in 2011. She has a passion for inspiring worship and music ministry, as well as for ministries that serve children, youth, and young families. Jaeyoun is married to Yongsang (Aiden) Kwon, and they have three children: Ray, Irene, and Brandon. She is also a coffee lover.
Hee Young Lim has been appointed to Westwood UMC
Heeyoung Lim holds an M.Div. from Drew Theological School. Before being called to ministry, he received a B.A. in economics from Kyung-Hee University and worked in a corporation located in Seoul, as well as its overseas branch in Nicaragua. He enjoys challenging himself and derives pleasure from exploring the question, ‘Why?’
He is passionate and skilled in practical research on effectively sharing the gospel in ministry. He dreams and envisions of what a new multi-ethnic ministry could look like.
He enjoys playing table tennis and badminton and hopes to try CrossFit and hiking when the opportunity arises. Heeyoung lives with his wife, Daesun, and their two adorable sons, Ben and Luke.
Rachel Callender has been appointed to Epworth UMC in Palmyra
Rachel Callender is the 13th Methodist Pastor in her family over five generations. After completing her BFA in Theatre Performance, she earned her M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a Complementary Certificate in Ecumenical Studies from the Bossey Ecumenical Institute of the World Council of Churches in Switzerland. Her previous appointments include Interim Pastor at the UMC’s of LBI and Associate Pastor at Medford UMC. She has a heart for ecumenical/interfaith dialogue and exploring spirituality through artistic expression. She and her husband, Matthew, both born and raised in New Jersey, share their home with their two cats, Hux and Hanx.
February 26, 2023
Brian Robinson has been appointed to First UMC - Millville
Brian Robinson is a life-long New Jersey resident. After more than 30 years in public education, recently retiring as a school principal, he answered the call to ministry. He holds and Ed.D. from Seton Hall University and has studied at Palmer Theological Seminary for commissioning as a Deacon. Brian has served his local congregation as an adult Sunday School teacher, Lay Leader, choir member and other roles. He was a member of the gospel quartet, “In His Name.” Brian has a heart for those on the margins of society and believes in the gospel’s transformative power to change individuals and communities. He sees the church is at our best, when we are showing Christ’s love to others in our words and our actions. Brian and his wife, Nancy, were married in 1995 and enjoy living in Cape May County with all of its natural beauty.
February 12, 2023
Jisun Nam has been appointed to Wesley UMC in South Plainfield
Jisun Nam has spent over 20 years in ministry and currently serves as an associate pastor at Trinity UMC in Hackettstown. She earned her M.Div. from Drew Theological School, where she studied Child Studies and Christian Education. Jisun is passionate about helping young disciples grow in their faith and has a special interest in pastoral care. She is currently pursuing her M.A. in Counseling at Montclair University. Jisun strives to make God’s grace visible through the Word of God, prayer, and her presence. She also serves as a circuit elder, using her gifts to serve the connectional church. Jisun is married to Kenneth Jung and has three teenagers. She finds joy in books, music, coffee, and her dog, Snooper.
Kil Jae Park has been appointed to Caldwell UMC
Kil Jae Park is a Korean American who immigrated to the US when he was ten years old and grew up in the Bronx. and graduated from New York University with a B.A. degree in Philosophy. He earned a B.A. in Philosophy from New York University and went on to receive an M.Div from Drew Theological School, followed by an M.A. and Ph.D. in Christian Education from Princeton Theological Seminary. With roots as a PK of a United Methodist pastor in the New York Conference, Kil Jae served in various churches in the New York and New Jersey areas since 1988, working with children, youth and young adult ministries until he was appointed full time to North Hunterdon UMC (2005) and Teaneck UMC (2008). He is passionate about teaching ministries of the church and believes that “incarnation” (aka relationship) is key to a meaningful and life-changing ministry. He has a Presbyterian dog named “Calvin” and views church, family and golf as God’s special gifts to the world.
David Tillisch has been appointed to Bishop Janes UMC in Basking Ridge
David Tillisch is a native of New Jersey who is passionate about leading churches to be incubators of disciples and engaged servants of their communities. He was called to ministry after successful careers in retail sales management and distribution, computer programming, and consumer products sales analysis, and pursued his Master of Divinity degree at Drew University School of Theology. He served as pastor to the Frankford Plains, Delaware Valley, and First Blairstown UMCs. Dave is married to his wife, Wen-Ling Lai, who serves as a hospice chaplain, and has two children. His hobbies include bike riding, singing, and enjoying the outdoors.
February 5, 2023
Jill Hubbard-Smith has been appointed to First United Methodist Church in Oakhurst
Jill Hubbard-Smith is a lifelong Methodist rooted in love for the Divine and neighbor. She is passionate for mission and outreach ministries that offer radical hospitality, welcoming all God’s children totheir place at the table as the Body of Christ. She feels called to “do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can…” She believes creative worship and expression deepens our sense of God’s presence in us and in the world. Jill has served in ministry through chaplaincy, camping, and youth ministry before serving in the Greater NJ Conference as a pastor. Jill is married to Garry and together they celebrate the gift of three amazing children, Adam, Hannah, and Lydia. Jill enjoys the beach, game nights, Broadway, travel, and abiding friendships.
Jan. 15, 2023
Ronell Howard has been selected as the Central District Superintendent
Rev. Ronell Howard will be the new District Superintendent starting January 1, 2023, for the Central District which covers from Trenton, New Jersey to the Jersey Shore. She will be replacing Hector Burgos who was elected a bishop and will be serving the Upper New York Conference.
Presently Ronell is a part of the Metro Highlands Regional Team working to develop clergy and congregations in that region and overseeing A Journey of Hope to end the sin of racism for GNJ. She is a Native of Fort Smith, Arkansas who was raised in New York City and graduated from the State University of New York at Stony Brook with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature. She also earned a Master of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary where she also received the Jagow Award for Excellence on Homiletics and Speech. Upon graduation she served as a pastoral resident in the Transition into Ministry Program funded by the Lilly Endowment and was ordained in the American Baptist Churches USA of Metropolitan New York and became a United Methodist and received as an Elder of the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference. While serving as a United Methodist pastor in Norwalk, CT, she facilitated the joining of two churches to form Cornerstone Community Church. She previously served as the Lead Pastor of Christ United Methodist Church in Piscataway, NJ.
In her free time, Ronell loves to travel, garden, draw/paint, and follow all things Star Wars and Marvel Cinematic Universe. She loves spending time with family and friends and is the queen of spoiling her two dogs, Rocky and Robyn Fenty.
James Lee has been selected as the Director of Communications for EPA & GNJ
James Lee previously served as senior pastor of Wesley UMC in South Plainfield, senior pastor of Conklin UMC in South River, associate pastor of Calvary Korean UMC, and the Manager of Visual Arts for the United Methodists of Greater New Jersey from 2016-2018. He received his M. Div from Drew Theological School in 2014 and his B.A. from Rutgers University. James is passionate about creative worship, student ministries and the discipleship of new believers. He has been married to his wife Julie since 2012, and they have three young children.
Sammy Arroyo has been selected as GNJ's Director of Resourcing, Coastal Plains Region
Sammy Arroyo recently served as senior pastor at the First United Methodist Church of Hightstown. He comes with wonderful gifts of teaching, preaching, and leading both in the local church and throughout the annual conference. He is a published author, has turned congregations around in growth, worked with justice issues, and helped build strong relationships that have transformed lives and made disciples of Jesus Christ.