Rev. Dr. Kerrin Kirkpatrick

Senior Pastor
E-mail Rev. Dr. Kerrin Kirkpatrick

Hometown:
Kerrin spent most of her childhood years in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Her family moved to Lawrence, Kansas, where she graduated high school.

Background:
After graduating with a BS in Mechanical Engineering, Kerrin worked as a design and development engineer for various companies in Wisconsin, Colorado, Texas and Iowa. She led teams in developing new product designs and improving existing product designs. Kerrin and her family came to Iowa when she was hired by Amana Refrigeration in 1988, and after a few years she became Manager of Central Air Conditioning Engineering. It was while working at Amana that she heard and wrestled with a call to ministry. It was a difficult time of discerning for her, as she loved the work she was doing!  In November 1993, Kerrin made the difficult decision to accept an appointment as interim pastor to Buck Creek-Delhi UMCs, and she left Amana Refrigeration.  In the fall of 1994, Kerrin started seminary and served as pastor to two Viola and Martelle UMCs. Kerrin has since served Iowa United Methodist churches in Cedar Rapids, Janesville, and most recently, Bettendorf.

Education:
Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering, 1978, Kansas State University; Masters of Divinity,1998, University of Dubuque Theological Seminary; Doctorate of Ministry, 2009, University of Dubuque Theological Seminary

Responsibilities at Ames First UMC:
Senior Pastor

Family:
Kerrin and her husband, Carl, have four grown children and four grandchildren. Carl is a retired teacher.

Pastor Nikki

Associate Pastor, Youth Ministries

Hometown: East Moline, Illinois

Background: When Nikki was eight years old, she felt called by God to be a missionary. Since that day, she has been on a journey to discover my mission field. This journey has taken her to Africa, Central America, and many places in the US. What she has found in all places is the call to share God’s love with the community. From leading an after school program teaching kids to pray in rural Illinois, to playing soccer with a pop bottle in west Africa, to running a community summer program in Costa Rica, sharing the love of God while meeting the needs and building relationships with the people of the community is the most important work she has done. Nikki was blessed to serve as Pastor at Hampton Grace UMC, where she served for five and a half years. She was also blessed to serve at Eldridge UMC as Youth and Family Pastor and to be the Community Spiritual Director for the Quad City Chrysalis Community. Nikki is currently a Deacon with the Illinois Great Rivers Conference, serving as a bridge between the church and the community.

Education: Nikki completed her Bachelor’s degree in Religious Studies at Iowa State University and her Master’s degree in Missional Christianity at Dubuque Theological Seminary.

Family: Nikki lives in Ames with her husband James and their two children, Aaron and Alaina.

Nicole Smith

Director of Christian Education
E-mail Nicole Smith

Hometown: Carroll, IA

Background: Nicole always wanted to be a teacher. Granted she first wanted to be a dance teacher and own and operate her own dance studio someday—but still—it was teaching! She was called to teach. Sister Nancy Hoffman was her fifth grade teacher who not only helped instill in her the desire to teach, but also instilled in her the seeds of faith allowing her to continue to learn about the Christian faith and hold it close to her heart. So she went on to earn a degree in elementary education and started working right away for William Penn University in the education division as a teaching assistant in the distance learning program. She worked with non-traditional students from a variety of backgrounds and cultures who were passionate about becoming teachers. She still works for William Penn as the lead teaching assistant for elementary education-distance learning and an adjunct instructor every semester. This has helped her keep up-to-date on current methods in teaching, learning strategies, classroom and behavior management, communication and lesson structure. After college, while living in Muscatine, Iowa, Nicole developed a passion for working in youth ministry. She helped lead a mission trip with high school youth to Ruiz, Nayarit in Mexico and served as an interim youth director at Wesley United Methodist Church before moving to Gilbert. Nicole and her family became members of First UMC in Ames in 2008 and in 2012, Nicole became the Director of Christian Education.

Family: Nicole lives in Gilbert with her husband Ben (a volunteer youth leader with the middle school class), their two children Zachery and Savanna, and their little fur baby Zoey.

“I absolutely LOVE what I do at First UMC. Seeing the excitement on the faces of the children and youth here and the smiles from the adults as they all share in the gospel message make every day here so much fun. I know they are hearing the message and wanting to serve others in Jesus’ name.”

Brooke Kruger

Director of Youth Ministries
E-mail Brooke Kruger

Background: Brooke started working in an appraisal and real estate firm before she was out of high school. In 1998 she became a licensed Realtor, as well as an associate real estate appraiser. In 2002, Brooke became one of the youngest licensed brokers in the state of Iowa. Brooke later worked in property management here in Ames, working with young adults finding campus properties and then moving into a firm which primarily dealt with older adults and international students. Brooke found herself called into the church in 2017, where she could utilize her detail-orientated nature in planning and focusing the youth of First United Methodist. Today Brooke helps plan for the spiritual development of our middle school and high school youth groups, helps co-chair the Youth Council, and plans for all the fun activities the youth enjoy.

 

Family: Brooke lives in Ames with her husband, Reid, and their two daughters, Aurelia and Coraline. Reid is the co-owner of a locksmith company here in Ames.

Myrna Cakerice

Music Director
E-mail Myrna Cakerice

Hometown: New Providence, Iowa

Background: Myrna participated in a variety of activities in school, including basketball, speech, drama, and music. She went on to UNI and attended for two years before she and her husband, Roy, adopted two girls and she received a MOM degree. Myrna and Roy also have one son. She has been a piano teacher since 1960. In 1980, Myrna began her work at FUMC as the church organist, and in 1993, she became the church choir director. In that same year, FUMC’s children’s choir sang with John Denver in his Christmas Concert at C.Y. Stephens in Ames.

Responsibilities: Consults and works closely with the senior pastor and others regarding music ministry needs for worship and special programs. Serves as church organist and directs choirs, recruiting and caring for the volunteers and their families serving on the various musical ministries of the church. Works with others to develop and oversee the music ministry budget; serves on the Worship Cluster and Church Council. Works with the Director of Christian Education on musical needs for Sunday School, mid-week ministries, etc. Helps to plan and promote concerts, recitals, and festivals. Properly maintains the music library, resources, and instruments of the church.

Reid Cummer

Business Manager
E-mail Reid Cummer

 

Responsibilities: Serves as the primary staff person working directly with the Committee on Finance: completes monthly reports; attends meetings; monitors and reviews ministry budget items and missions funds, etc.; recommends procedures and policies related to the financial/stewardship ministries of the church; plans and prepares for an annual financial review/audit. Serves as the custodian of all financial records and supplies reports as requested; counts, posts, and deposits offerings and payments for facility use and weddings. Maintains effective computerized accounting system in order to produce and distribute quarterly and annual financial statements, and in conjunction with the Finance Committee, reports to the congregation the financial status and health of the church. Prepares required information for the annual Charge Conference and complete report forms for use by the Iowa Annual Conference. Works with the church’s accounting firm to help manage payroll and all related issues

Jo Spotts

Business Office Assistant

Matt Woodworth

Part Time/Sunday Custodian