Pastor – Rev. Dr. Peter Lawson – In August 2023, Rev. Peter Lawson joined RRPC to serve as Transitional Pastor. Rev. Lawson is responsible for the full range of pastoral duties including worship, congregational care, outreach, and church development. As Head of Staff, he supervises RRPC employees and provides organizational oversight for the work of the Church. Importantly, he is leading our congregation through the search for a Called Pastor. Read more about Rev. Lawson. Contact Peter: firstname.lastname@example.org
Office Administrator – Crystal Duffield – Perhaps no one knows more about the inner workings of RRPC than Crystal. Crystal wears many hats and works in the office, directly with the Pastor, to keep the Church’s operations humming along. If you have questions about an event, how something at the Church works, or how to become more involved, Crystal can point you in the right direction. Crystal also publishes the Church’s weekly newsletter, The Pulse. Contact Crystal: email@example.com.
Interim Director of Christian Education – Brenda Peterson – Brenda is the temporary replacement for Lisa Watts who served faithfully in this position for 22 years. Brenda has longstanding experience with our congregation by way of her service as the Parish Counselor. We welcome her talents and skills that she brings to the position of Director of Christian Education. She will continue her duties as Parish Counselor in addition to her responsibilities as Director of Christian Education. Contact Brenda: ParishCounselor@riverpres.org
Custodian – Scott Szabo – Scott works Monday-Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., and Sundays from 8:00 a.m. through noon. He has a wealth of knowledge and experience, not to mention a smile as he goes about his day. Scott and his wife Sharon live in Avon Lake where they are enjoying semi-retirement. They love doing things around their home and occasionally enjoy camping and exploring.
Organist – Ann Gilbert – RRPC is blessed to have a talented musician such as Ann to be our organist. She is a graduate of The Cleveland Institute of Music, The Juilliard School of Music, and The University of Akron. She grew up at Lakewood Presbyterian Church and Old Stone Church in Cleveland. When not sharing her amazing talent with RRPC, she performs with the BlueWater Chamber Orchestra, the Akron Symphony, the Cleveland Pops Orchestra, and the Lakeside Symphony. She has performed with the Symphonic Orchestra of the State of Mexico, the Oregon Symphony, and the Symphonic Orchestra of Seville, Spain.
Children’s Choir Director – Hilary Watts – Hilary Watts is a teacher at Saint Joseph Academy in Cleveland, Ohio, where she directs four choirs and teaches AP Music Theory and Dance. She has a degree in Choral Music Education from Bowling Green State University and a Master of Music Education degree in General and Choral Music from Kent State University. She works alongside the Sunday School classes to help bring singing opportunities to the children, to worship God with music and song.
Preschool – Diana Wolfe (no relation to Dave below) – Diana directs preschool classes, which have been held at RRPC for more than 60 years. The teachers at RRPC Preschool care about giving every student a positive educational experience to learn and grow with their peers. Contact Diana: DJWolfe@riverpres.org
Financial Administrator – Dave Wolfe (no relation to Diana above) – Dave has been the financial administrator at RRPC since 2003. He graduated from Dyke College with an accounting degree and received a CPA license in 1994. He is a registered investment advisor/financial planner. He owns his own firm, Gerst Tax and Financial Services, located in North Olmsted. He lives in Westlake with his wife Dana and has three children: Jordan, a sales representative for Sherwin Williams, Paris, a nurse at St Vincent Hospital, and Blake studying and playing basketball at Bluffton University. Dave loves to play basketball competitively around the country in 50-and-over tournaments and leagues. Contact Dave: DWolfe@riverpres.org
Housekeeper – Halle McGorray – Halle has been the church housekeeper since 2010. She has grown-up with the Rocky River Presbyterian Church. She attended the Preschool, was confirmed at RRPC, and has watched all four of her children become baptized, confirmed, and become students of the Preschool. For years Halle has volunteered as a Sunday school teacher and on youth mission trips. She has served as a Deacon and a volunteer for the annual Trash and Treasure sale. Halle notes that she “enjoys keeping Rocky River Presbyterian Church clean and dust-free!”
Parish Counselor – Brenda Peterson – Brenda is RRPC’s part-time Parish Counselor who works with the Pastor to provide visitation. She also provides guidance and support to RRPC members navigating medical, social, mental or other life events — all with 100% confidentiality and concern. She has three children (Matthew, Eric and Liesl), three granddaughters (Matthew’s children, Heidi, Greta and Brigitte), and her cat Mia. Brenda shared, “I thank the Lord every day for my home with fun and caring neighbors. When I am at home I enjoy working in my yard and flower beds. I plant a vegetable garden every year. I will try almost any outdoor activity — bike riding, golfing, hiking, swimming, kayaking, and event snow shoeing. Quiet time involves reading and meditation. I love meeting new people and hearing their stories!” Contact Brenda: ParishCounselor@riverpres.org