Following the resignation of Marie Bacchiocchi, the SEC Board of Directors, in consultation with the National UCC staff, have asked the three neighboring Conference Ministers: The Rev. Ginny Brown Daniel, Missouri Mid-South; The Rev. John Vertigan, Florida; and The Rev. Don Longbottom, South Central to act as Consulting Conference Ministers to the SE Conference Board of Directors and The Rev. Heather Fosburgh starting August 20th. The Rev. Heather Fosburgh will continue in her position as Associate Conference Minister.
The Rev. Ginny Brown Daniel, Missouri Mid-South
Ginny brings sixteen years of pastoral experience in two UCC churches – the first in Maryland and then in Houston, Texas. She served as Moderator of the South Central Conference while serving the Houston congregation, and previously served on the Board of the Mid Atlantic Conference, and was Moderator of their Annual Meeting. Called to ministry while a student at Auburn University, Ginny attended Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond in Richmond, VA. In 2003 she was called to Plymouth United Church of Christ in Spring, TX, she served there until May, 2015 when she left to pursue a consulting business called Divine Sparks Consulting. Ginny also received a Doctor of Ministry from Union Presbyterian Seminary. Ginny has been the MMS Conference Minister since December 1, 2015.
The Rev. John Vertigan, Florida
A life-long member and lover of the United Church of Christ, John began his call as the Florida Conference Minister on Jan. 1, 2015. Prior to moving to Florida he was the Conference Minister of the Indiana-Kentucky Conference. John earned his bachelor’s degree in sociology from State University of New York at Pottsdam, and his M. Div. from Bangor Theological Seminary in Maine. He has a daughter, Allyson, who lives in California. John was licensed as a pastor in 1989 and ordained in 1995 in the New York Conference. He considers himself fortunate to have served faith communities of various sizes and configurations.
The Rev. Don Longbottom, South Central
Dr. Don, as he is affectionately called, grew up in Yuma, Arizona and graduated from Arizona State University with both a Bachelors and Masters degree in Political Science. After working the next few years, Don attended Golden Gate Seminary where he graduated with honors. His first congregation was Immanuel Baptist Church in Alameda, CA. While serving this congregation, he was accepted into the PhD program at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, CA. His field of study was social ethics. Ultimately, Don received his doctorate in 2001 from Andover Newton School of Religion. Since 1991, Dr. Don has served throughout the United States as a Senior Minister in the United Church of Christ. His final settled ministry was at Countryside Community UCC, a 2,000-member congregation. While serving at Countryside, he was invited by Senator Chuck Hagel to open the U.S. Senate with prayer. Don began as Designated Conference Minister for the SCC on June 1, 2016.