First Presbyterian Church of Norwood
Seeking to Grow in Christ Together:
Welcoming, Loving, Serving in Christ’s Name
Leadership & Staff
The word, “Presbyterian” comes from the Greek word used in the New Testament for “elder.” Leadership in the Presbyterian Church is always shared between ministers (Teaching Elders) and lay leadership (Ruling Elders), who together form the Session of the local congregation. We strongly believe that God calls both women and men into leadership. Most decisions in the church are made by the Session, although there are some major decisions made by the congregation as a whole (for example, the calling of new ministers and the election of church leaders). Ruling Elders share in the spiritual leadership of the church with the minister. At FPC we have nine elders who serve three year, staggered terms.
Rev. Julie Hill is a graduate of Duke University and Union Presbyterian Seminary-Charlotte. After several years working in the business community, and many more as a stay-at-home mother, Julie answered the call to ministry and was ordained in 2008. She came to us in September 2010 from Davidson College Presbyterian Church, where she served as an Associate Pastor. Julie enjoys reading, traveling, going to the movies, and spending times with friends. Julie and her husband, Thomas Jennings, have two sons, Elliott and Sam.
Director of Music
Dr. Valarie Alexandra Valois is a concert pianist who has been making music since the age of four. She received a Masters and PhD from The Vienna Academy in Vienna, Austria and has lived, worked, and performed around the world. Valarie loves sharing music with others and feels called to share her extraordinary gifts within the church. Valarie has an extensive background in music therapy and is interested in using her music as a healing art.
Paula Blake has worked at First Presbyterian Church since 1999. A native of Norwood and a graduate of Wingate College, Paula can tell you just about everything you may want to know about the church and our community. Paula loves making crafts, reading, and spending time with her family. She is the person to call for creative party or shower ideas! Paula has three sons, Elliot, Cody, and Eli.