Winterville United Methodist Church

Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors

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Meet Our Staff

Reverend Shirley Wright

Pastor Shirley grew up in North Carolina, graduated college at Limestone College in Gaffney, South Carolina. She earned her Master of Divinity from the Candler School of Theology at Emory University in 1987.  Pastor Shirley completed 6 units of Clinical Pastoral Education with Emory University Affiliated Hospitals.  In 2011 she earned her Doctor of Ministry degree from Erskine Theological Seminary with a focus on the Psalms and grief support. In 1993 Pastor Shirley was ordained as a Deacon in the North Georgia Conference in and as an Elder in 1995. She has also served as a college chaplain, as a minister of pastoral care, and her appointment at Winterville represents the fourth appointment with the conference as pastor-in-charge.
Pastor Shirley is married to Ken, also a clergy person.  They have three children--two sons and a daughter, as well as, 11 grandchildren--7 granddaughters and 4 grandsons.

Pastor Shirley enjoys music--piano and vocal;. she likes to smock and sew.  Together Ken and Shirley enjoy camping and spending time spoiling the grandchildren.



Kristy Smith, Administrative Assistant



Tom Bouknecht, Music Director
Tom Bouknecht was born April 27th, 1949 in Troy, Ohio. At the age of 3, his family moved to St. Petersburg, FL, where he was raised. He graduated from Boca Ciega High School in 1967. He earned his BME degree from St. Leo College in Florida in 1971, with a double major in voice and piano.

In 1971, after graduation, he enlisted in the US Army and was stationed at Hunter Army Airfield/Fort Stewart with the 80th Army and then the 94th Infantry Division Band.

After he was discharged, he took a job with the Baldwin Piano and Organ Company in Athens, Georgia and worked with Consolidate Freight and Watkins Moto Lines until starting with the US Postal Service in 1987. He retired as postmaster in Stephens, GA.

He has served as Music Director at several United Methodist Churches; Grace in Savannah, 1st in Watkinsville and now, here at Winterville.

Tom has 5 children and 2 grandchildren and lives with his wife, Angela, and 2 grown children, Mallory and T.J. who is married with a daughter due any day.


Brenda Keen, Nursery Director


Greg Toler, 8:45 Pianist