Pastors and Staff

Beth Snarr

Lead Pastor

Pastor Beth is a native Floridian who has been in ministry for over 20 years. She’s a graduate of Florida State University with a degree in Elementary Education and a Masters of Divinity from Duke University.  A few of her favorite things are: her family, friends, going to the movies, live theatre performances, FSU football, and, of course, Jesus! 

Dr. Harold Henderson

Pastoral Associate

Pastor Harold is delighted to have re-joined the staff at First UMC although in a different role when he was appointed as interim Senior Pastor at this church from 2007 to 2012. Harold and his wife, Kathy, are thrilled to be back serving and worshiping in her home church. 


Children’s Ministry Coordinator

Lynnette has lived in Gainesville almost her entire life and her career before joining our staff was as a public school teacher for over 30 years teaching K-3. After retiring in 2018, Lynnette missed working with children and their families, and the blessing to have the opportunity to touch many lives as a teacher. She joined our staff in 2022 and looks forward to helping our First UMC kids grow in their faith!

Michael Ekbladh

DIRECTOR of Music Ministries & Worship Arts

Michael holds a Masters degree in Music-Conducting from Texas Christian University and has pursued a Masters in Sacred Music from Southern Methodist University. 

Linda Madden

Director of Finance & Human Resources

Linda was born in Chicago but grew up in Orlando. She received her accounting degree from St Leo's University and is married with two grown children. Linda is an avid reader of murder mysteries, and when not reading, loves to spend time with her husband and family, including her dog, Gideon and cat, Spencer. 

Larry Resch

Director of Communications & Community Engagement

Larry and his wife, Cheryl, grew up in Maryland and relocated to Florida to escape the cold and dreary winters “up North”. Larry feels that his previous employment and ministry tech work in Maryland was God’s way of preparing him for his ministry here at First UMC. 

Janet Rocap

Director of Adult Discipleship

Janet has been an active First UMC member for several years. She has many years administrative experience in the non-profit sector, including Director of Adult Ministries at Genesis UMC in Cary, NC. A Boston-area native, her interests are history, reading, and family time with husband Carl, two dogs, and 3 rescue cats.

Charlene Smith

Office Manager

Charlene became actively involved at First UMC when she began attending as a child. After retiring from a career working in the non-profit sector, she has returned to her home church and loves serving others through the many ministry opportunities First UMC provides for the Gainesville community.

Melissa Williamson

FUMPers Preschool Director

Lorin Winters

FUMPERS Preschool Administrator

Lorin is a graduate of University of Florida with a Masters degree in Early Childhood Education and a mother of three. Lorin has over 15 years of experience in the Early Childhood Education field. She is also a Member-at-Large on the Board for the Christian Preschool Association (formerly the United Methodist Association of Preschools).