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Meet the Staff
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  • Dr. Melanie Rosa
    Dr. Melanie Rosa
    Lead Pastor

    Dr. Melanie Rosa was appointed Lead Pastor in 2017. She comes to First Church after serving in a variety of churches large and small, urban and rural. She also worked as a Campus Minister at Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas. Most recently served the Rocky Mountain Conference as a District Superintendent with oversight for 40 churches in Denver and Colorado Springs. She holds a Master of Divinity and Doctorate from the Iliff School of Theology and has a passion for reaching new people with the liberating love and hope of Jesus Christ. Melanie has served in mission in Haiti, Guatemala, Romania, Mexico and the U.S. She is married to Fred and they are the parents of Mark and Katie.

  • Rev. Cynthia Paquette
    Rev. Cynthia Paquette
    Executive Pastor

    Rev. Cynthia Paquette worked as an Entomologist for 10 years before answering her call to the ordained ministry in 2007. She has a Doctor of Philosophy in Entomology and worked in the field until 2015. She originated from Malaysia, came from a Buddhist family and had a conversion experience at the age of 16 while trying to find meaning and direction in life after the passing of her grandmother. She completed a Master of Divinity at Asbury Theological Seminary in 2015, was commissioned as a Provisional Elder and was appointed to First Church in June 2016. As Executive Pastor, Rev. Cynthia oversees the cradle to grave faith formation by working with the different programming staff and the pastoral and congregational care ministries by working with her clergy colleagues and the congregational care ministries. Rev. Cynthia’s gifts for ministry are in the areas of administration, healing, and teaching.




Education (Children, Youth, Adults)

  • Barb Grauberger
    Barb Grauberger
    Director of Children's Ministry
  • Rebecca Dunagan
    Rebecca Dunagan
    Director of Youth Ministries

    Rebecca Dunagan is our Director of Youth Ministry.  She and her family moved from PA to Fort Collins in July.  While coffee is her fuel, connection and community are her passion!  She is dedicated to building up leaders who make a difference in the lives of youth through deep commitments to connection and service. A candidate for ministry in the United Methodist Church, Rebecca is currently attending United Seminary and will earn a Master's of Divinity in May.  She and her husband Sean have four sons, Owen, Teddy, Patrick and Fin. 

  • David Reid
    David Reid
    Director of Adult Faith Formation Director of Northern Colorado Faith Library

    Condemned to a lifetime of Methodism by his middle name, David Wesley Reid joined the staff in 2011. He was founding publisher and editor of Vital Theology newsletter. He has been communications director for Duke University Divinity School, public relations manager for a Fortune 500 company and vice president of a Denver PR firm. Earlier, he was a reporter and editor for newspapers in Denver, Cincinnati and Spokane. David received his B.A. in communications from Linfield College during the last millennium. His wife, Louann Reid, is chair of the English Department at CSU. He is a baseball fan and crazy about jazz. He enjoys a good cigar but can’t afford one very often.

  • Laura Lechtenberg
    Laura Lechtenberg
    Preschool Director

    Laura Lechtenberg's journey with the First United Methodist Church Co-op Preschool and First Church began in 1994 as a new preschool parent and church member. Laura has worn every hat possible in the preschool, parent, board member, teacher and director. In 1995 Laura became a board member, in 96 joined she the teaching staff and became the director in January of 2001. Laura holds a Bachelor of Science in Child Development from San Diego State University. She has been working with young children since 1986. Laura grew up in San Diego and has many childhood and MYF memories from St Mark’s United Methodist Church. She and her husband Dave moved to Colorado in 1986. Her two adult daughters both attended the First United Methodist Church Co-op Preschool.   Laura feels blessed to have found a wonderful preschool for her children and is privileged to maintain it for future young children, families and First Church.

  • Gail Farnum
    Gail Farnum
    Mom’s Day Out Director

    Although she hesitates to admit it, Gail Farnum has been working in the child care field for almost 40 years. Gail was born in Fargo, North Dakota and received her degree in Child Development there at North Dakota State University. In 1980, she and her husband Bob moved to CO. Shortly after joining First United Methodist Church, she began working in the church nursery. She later became a teacher for the Mother’s Day Out program at First Church, and in 1995 became its director. She was the Vacation Bible School music director, and also director of child care for the annual Methodist conference for many years. Gail and Bob were blessed with 2 daughters, Chelsey and Rachel. Besides young children, Gail’s passions include playing guitar and singing; and she is proud to be caretaker of the wonderful ministry of Mother's Day Out.

  • Barb Grauberger
    Barb Grauberger
    Childcare Director


Music department

  • David Adkins
    David Adkins
    Director of Music Ministries/Print and Digital Communications

    David Adkins holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in music from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, a Master of Arts degree from Samford University with an emphasis in choral conducting, a Master of Science degree from Samford University in secondary education and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Denver with an emphasis in organizational leadership and human resource administration. Originally from Birmingham, Alabama, since 1984 David has served as the Director of Music, Arts, and Worship for churches throughout Alabama, Florida and Colorado,  serving churches from 300 to 4,000 members.


    David currently works full-time as Director of Music & Communications at First Church.  His hobbies include home improvement projects, stained glass and studying organ.  He and his spouse, Dr. Gregory O'Barr, live in Fort Collins.

  • Karen Stoody
    Karen Stoody
    Associate Director of Music Ministries and Organist
         Karen Stoody has been the organist at First Church since fall of 2003.  She and husband John moved to Fort Collins in June of 2003 because she had been hired as a staff accompanist at Colorado State University.
    She was rehearsal pianist for Opera Fort Collins for ten years, and after retiring from that and CSU, added the duties of handbell choir director for First Church.
    Karen studied organ and piano at Colorado Women’s College and Adams State College, and has a BA degree in organ performance.  She has been a church organist since the age of 14. She has directed handbells for 15 years, and  had a large private piano studio for 35 years.
    In addition to music, Karen loves outdoor activities like bicycling, hiking, and motorcycling with her husband.  Her son, daughter-in-law, and granddaughter live in Greeley; and her daughter lives in Seattle.
  • Joseph Noelliste
    Joseph Noelliste
    Modern Worship Leader
  • Josh Colonnieves
    Josh Colonnieves
    Director of Children's Choir


Administrative Staff (Office, Facilities)

  • Henry Reyna
    Henry Reyna
    Facilities Manager
  • Jim Doser
    Jim Doser
    Worship Technology Lead
  • Catherine Pawlikowski
    Catherine Pawlikowski
    Membership Secretary/ Volunteer Coordinator



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