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Rev. Molly Carlson


Ecumenical Guest - Rev. Molly Carlson

Rev. Molly Carlson has served as the Conference Minister of the Illinois Conference of the United Church of Christ since August 2020.  Prior to serving in this role, Rev. Carlson served in local, regional and national settings of the church.  Her ministry has taken her to Indiana, Kentucky, Oregon, California, Idaho, Pennsylvania, Washington and Tennessee.  She currently lives in Dekalb, IL with her husband, Michael, their two young adult children and several pets.

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Rev. Dr. Myron F. McCoy

Memorial Service Preacher - Rev. Dr. Myron F. McCoy

Rev. Dr. Myron F. McCoy has been serving as the Senior Pastor at the First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple since July 1, 2014. He previously served as president of the Saint Paul School of Theology in Kansas City and Oklahoma City for eleven years. Prior to that Dr. McCoy pastored at the St. Mark  and South Shore United Methodist Churches in Chicago. He has also served as a District Superintendent in the Northern Illinois Conference, and as the Interim Senior Pastor of the Hyde Park Community UMC in Cincinnati, Ohio. 

Beyond the local church Dr. McCoy serves as a Trustee of Ohio Wesleyan University, chair of the Board of Directors of the Greater Chicago Broadcast Ministries and serves on the Board of Directors for Kids Above All, and Illinois Churches in Action. In previous years Dr. McCoy served in NIC as co-chair of the Shepherding Team and chair of the Board of Ordained Ministry.

Beyond the bounds of the NIC, Dr. McCoy has served as Chair of the UM Senate, the NCJ Committee of the Episcopacy, and Board of the UM Publishing House.  He has been on the UM National Shalom Committee; Co-Chair of the Task Force to Study the Episcopacy of the UMC 2004-2008, and a trustee of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, Baker University, and the Association of Theological Schools.

Dr. McCoy holds a B.A. from Ohio Wesleyan University, an M.Div. from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, and a DMin. from United Theological Seminary. Dr. McCoy is also a recipient of honorary doctorates from both Baker University and United Theological Seminary. Dr. McCoy is married to Karen (Fulgham), and they are the parents of three adult sons: Justin, Armand, and Marlen, and grandparents to Miles and Karli.

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Dr. Rolf Nolasco

Bible Study Leader - Dr. Rolf Nolasco

Dr. Rolf Nolasco is the Rueben P. Job Professor of spiritual formation and pastoral theology at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary and director of the Rueben P. Job Institute for Spiritual Formation.

Dr. Nolasco is an experienced professor, trained in pastoral and counseling psychology, mindfulness and contemplative spirituality, and affective neuroscience. Nolasco is also a psychotherapist, published author, and has vast experience in cross-cultural communications from living and working across the world within varying social and cultural backgrounds. In addition to Hearts Ablaze: Parables for the Queer Soul, he is the author of God’s Beloved Queer, The Contemplative Counselor: A Way of Being, and Compassionate Presence: A Radical Response to Human Suffering.

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Rev. Dr. Addison Shields, Jr.

Worship Leader - Rev. Dr. Addison Shields, Jr.

Rev. Dr. Addison Shields, Jr., retired July 1, 2014, as an Elder within the United Methodist Church after serving the denomination for 34 years. He served 6 congregations before his retirement. Dr. Shields served as the district superintendent for the former Rockford and Chicago Southern Districts. He is currently serving as senior pastor for Transformation Community United Methodist Church in Harvey, Illinois.

Dr. Shields' musical ministry started at a young age. He was the organist for many churches across the Chicago metropolitan area. He studied voice under the late Thelma Wade Brown at American Conservatory of Music at Roosevelt University. While singing with the Kennedy-King College Community Choir, the choir sung as the guest chorale performing with the Ohio Philharmonics, Chicago Symphony Orchestra and performances at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Dr. Shields sings baritone as a member of the South Holland Master Chorale in South Holland, IL.

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Wanda J Bishop

Musician - Wanda J Bishop

Wanda J Bishop, aka Joy is an accomplished educator,  worship leader,  keyboardist, songwriter, and vocalist, affectionately called "the little energetic lady with an infectious smile!" At present, Wanda is employed at Our Lady of Africa Catholic Parish and as music director for Maple Park United Methodist Church. She is adept at a broad range of musical styles and genres and has formerly served in the past as Minister of Music at the following Churches: Martin Temple AMEZ,  Park Manor Christian, Calvary Community Reformed, South Side UnityTemple, Grant Memorial AME, St. Stephen AME, Southlawn UMC. Wanda was Director of Youth Ministry at Beth Eden Baptist for ten years.

Wanda is a member of the Chicago Music Association and sings with the Chicago Community Choir. She was a former Chicago Public School substitute Music teacher at Grant Elementary and Longwood Academy Charter Schools from 1994-2002.

She has professional experience in both spiritual and secular music. She is an established local and international artist. She is a published songwriter and has recorded with Jazz Flutist Nicole Mitchell on the Afrika Rising CD.   Wanda completed two international tours to perform as Assistant Music Director for The Harlem Gospel Singers in 2018 and returned in 2019 as Pianist for Rev. Calvin Bridges Ministries. Wanda’s musical gifts opened doors for her to minister and perform in ten international countries to date. She toured on Royal Caribbean Cruise Line as a pianist and vocalist in a Jazz Trio setting. In the Chicago Theater community, she’s been contracted as Composer, Music Director, Instructor, Pianist for musical projects at Arie Crown Theatre, ETA, Kuumba Workshop, Black Ensemble Theaters, Beverly Arts Center, and Bailiwick Theater. Wanda loves Christ and is committed to serving through her love for music and humanity.

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Deborah Dangerfield

Annual Conference Committee Chair - Deborah Dangerfield

Deborah Dangerfield, has been an active member of Maple Park UMC in Chicago since 1963. In the NIC, she serves or has served on the Nominations Committee, Board of Pensions, ACST, BMCR, and the Inter-Ethnic Strategic Development Group. She has also served as a jurisdiction delegate. Deborah has a master’s degree in both business and health care.

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P. Joanne Ray

Annual Conference Committee Vice Chair/Daily Proceedings Chair - P. Joanne Ray

P. Joanne Ray is a member of Grace United Methodist Church in Joliet and is a leader in their music and audiovisual teams. She is a founder and principal of Consultants in Association Philanthropy (CAP). Joanne is a graduate of Valparaiso University.

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Randy Hayes

Conference Secretary - Randy Hayes

Randy Hayes, is a retired Licensed Local Lay Pastor, active member at Faith United Methodist in Polo, and former Conference Co-Chair of the Bishop’s Initiative on Children & Poverty. Randy spent his professional career in Behavioral Health as a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor and Certified Addiction and Drug Counselor.

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