New pastor steps into the pulpit at Prescott United Methodist Church
There’s a heap of transitioning going on at the Prescott United Methodist Church, with a trio of retirements promulgating the changes.
A new senior pastor, the Rev. Dan Hurlbert, has assumed the pulpit as of July 1, picking up the reins there at 505 W. Gurley St. from the Rev. Dave Alberts, who capped off his 40-year ministry following a five-year tenure at the church’s helm. For Hurlbert, though, it comes as something of a homecoming, in that he began his full-time ministerial career at the PUMC in January 1994 when he served as associate pastor. In that position, he was responsible for the youth ministry and started the church’s Saturday evening service.
Hurlbert, who was born and raised in Phoenix, attended Scottsdale Community College and earned his bachelor’s degree in communication from Arizona State University. Following graduation from ASU he went on to attain his Master of Divinity degree from California’s Claremont School of Theology.
During his time at Claremont he met and married the Rev. Susan Root, who is an ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Following his associate pastor tenure in Prescott, they moved to the Desert Skies United Methodist Church in Tucson, where he served for eight years before being appointed as senior pastor at the Tempe UMC on the ASU campus, over which he has presided for the last four years.
The church’s music program is the recipient of two new staffers to replace retirees Carole Nickerson, who has directed the church’s music ministries for the past 23 years, and Patty Newton, accompanist on the organ and piano for 19 years.
Jacob Gilbert, who comes to Prescott from Greensboro, N.C., will replace Nickerson. He earned his bachelor of music education degree this year from the University of North Carolina, where his primary music education was voice and secondary was in instruments, piano, organ and conducting. At UNC, he was an auditioned groups performer that included chamber singers, University Choral, UNC Opera Gala Chorus, and soloist, and he has been involved in varied groups and activities and has been the recipient of numerous awards.
Newton’s replacement is Janet Moore, who holds a bachelor of arts degree in music education, with concentration in piano and voice, from Western New Mexico University in Silver City and a master’s degree in music education, with concentration in piano, from the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. She has also pursued post-graduate work in church music at Seattle Pacific University, and has had extensive experience in various capacities at both St. Peter’s UMC in Bellevue, Wash., and Renton UMC in Seattle. Wherever she has been, she has provided private piano lessons and accompanied numerous musical groups.
All three newcomers assumed their duties at the PUMC this month.