Our Ministry Staff
Transitional Senior Pastor
The Rev. Marilyn Gamm is serving with us as our Transitional Senior Pastor. She is an experienced pastor and transitional/interim pastor, transitional presbytery executive, presbytery and national church leader.
Pastor Marilyn is a cradle Presbyterian and a native of Missouri (Bowling Green). Most of her 31 years in ministry has been in churches in the Midwest but her experience includes large church ministry, presbytery leadership, and national board leadership. Rev Gamm currently serves on the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board and on our Presbytery’s Coordinating Council.
Prior to seminary, Pastor Marilyn worked in radio in Bowling Green and as a television broadcast journalist and executive in Jefferson City and St. Louis. She is a graduate of William Woods University in Fulton, the St. Louis Broadcast Center, and Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary.
She has memberships in the Daughters of the American Revolution and PEO; is a life-long St. Louis Cardinals baseball fan; enjoys the Triple Crown horse races; and is an avid gardener.
Pastor Marilyn’s home is in Ellisville with her spouse, the Rev. Dr. Craig Howard, who serves as the Executive Presbyter of Chicago Presbytery. Together, they share his two adult daughters, Jacqueline Howard and Judith Howard, both of Chicago.
Sam Kennedy, Director of UKirk (Campus Ministries)
Sam may be new to his role, but not to First Presbyterian! Sam is an alum of our UKirk program and has played in our praise band.
Sam is a graduate of Mizzou ('13) and has completed some graduate studies at Asbury Theological Seminary (United Methodist) in Kentucky.
Sam is passionate about bringing the scriptures to life for young adults. He's interested in building new relationships between Christian communities and the communities built around the arts and video games on our three local college campuses.
Director of Youth & Children's Ministry
Audra became part of the First Presbyterian staff here in Columbia in March of 2020 as the Director of Youth and Children’s Ministry. She has always enjoyed working with children and youth, both in her church and in the public school setting.
Audra grew up in Oklahoma and completed her degree in Elementary Education at Oklahoma City University. After graduation Audra began her Career in education by teaching 5th Grade in Mounds. She continued her career in education when her family moved to Columbia in the summer of 2008. While living in Columbia she taught in several classrooms with CPS.
Audra enjoys her life here in Columbia with her husband Jason, and their son Garrick, who are also both part of the FPC Family. She loves spending time with her family, working in the yard and taking walks to enjoy God's creation.
“I have always placed a high importance on the value of a strong church family in the development of young people. I look forward to helping lead FPC Columbia using its vision statement - Disciples Making a Difference. Let’s not forget the words from Proverbs 22:6: "Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.”
Administrative and Support Staff
Executive Administrative Assistant
Nancy grew up in Columbia, graduating from Hickman High School as well as MU. She taught art for Fulton Middle School and St. Peter Catholic School for over 35 years. Nancy became part of the staff in early December 2017.
Nancy enjoys paper casting sculptures and utilizing techniques typically used for other media. She also enjoys travelling, especially to visit the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright.
The Bible verse that provides Nancy comfort is Isaiah 41:10: “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
Fran joined the FPC staff as Financial Coordinator in June 2019. Her career background includes experience in operations leadership, project management, and financial services. Fran is a graduate of William Woods University, and she earned her Chartered Financial Consultant designation from the American College of Financial Services.
Fran grew up in the Presbyterian Church as a minister’s daughter. She, her husband, and their two adult children are all ordained Elders at Trinity Presbyterian. Fran is active in the Chamber of Commerce Women’s Network. Her hobbies include gardening, fitness walking, reading, and singing soprano in the Trinity choir. She also enjoys traveling to new places and sightseeing. The Muench family members are fans of the Cardinals, Royals, and Chiefs, as well as Mizzou athletics. Fran is inspired by the Bible verse Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”