Pastors & Staff

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  • Rev. Laura Smith Conrad

    Pastor

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    Laura joined with the good people of Fort Hill Church in June of 2009 as their 11th Installed Pastor.  She serves as the lead pastor with a wonderful staff and congregation.  Laura’s primary roles include weekly worship and preaching, leading the staff and Session, and coaching and equipping the ministries of this church to be fruitful and healthy.  It is a privilege to serve among God’s people here and especially to be a part of the lives of its members.  Laura attended Presbyterian College and Columbia Theological Seminary.  She is blessed to share her life with her husband, Chuck, and children, Avery and Hallie.

  • Jacob Kennedy
  • Jacob Kennedy

    Associate Pastor, Congregational Life

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    Jacob joined the Fort Hill community in May of 2021 to be the new Associate Pastor for Youth and Mission. Jacob comes to Clemson after completing his Master of Divinity at Princeton Theological Seminary. While in seminary, he served a congregation in New York City and worked as a Hospital Chaplain in New Brunswick. Having graduated from Presbyterian College, he is very familiar with the Upstate and is excited to be returning to the area. Jacob loves to teach and share the stories of God with all people. Jacob’s passion is working with youth and helping them live out Christ’s love in the world. In his spare time, Jacob loves to cheer passionately for his favorite sports teams. If he is not doing that, you might find him reading, singing, or going to live concerts.

  • Colin Pettigrew
  • Colin Pettigrew

    Associate Pastor, University Ministry

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    Colin returned to the Fort Hill community as our Associate Pastor for University Ministry. Colin began his ministry at Fort Hill and the Clemson Presbyterian Student Association (Clemson PSA) on August 1, 2022. A graduate of Union Presbyterian Theological Seminary and Clemson University, Colin most recently served as Associate Pastor at Madison (GA) Presbyterian Church. According to Colin, “I’m excited to be back in the place and ministry that helped me discover and nurture my own call to ministry. I can’t wait to be a part of what God is doing at Fort Hill, and particularly with PSA!

  • vacant
  • Vacant

    Associate, Congregational Care

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  • Preston Shealy
  • Preston Shealy

    Parish Associate

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    A native of Camden, South Carolina, and a 1982 graduate of Clemson, Preston recently retired to Clemson after thirty-five years of ministry in the Presbyterian Church USA. Preston was active in the Presbyterian Student Association while a student at Clemson and an Affiliate Member of Fort Hill Church. Preston served churches in Illinois, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Ohio. He is married to Debbie (an elder and a physical therapist) who is active at Fort Hill Presbyterian Church where she is in the Bell Choir and on the Fellowship Ministry Team. Preston and Debbie enjoy hiking in the area parks and travelling (often with a travel trailer) throughout the United States and Canada with a special emphasis on our beautiful National Parks. For relaxation, Preston has officiated soccer for forty years. Preston and Debbie have two children: Paige lives in Atlanta and Matthew lives in Cleveland.

  • richardson
  • James T. Richardson (1939-2022)

    Pastor Emeritus

    Jim Richardson was honorably retired in 2007 after 27 years of service as pastor.  At the request of our congregation, the title of Pastor Emeritus has been conferred to him at the Presbytery Meeting of Foothills Presbytery on November 6, 2011.  Conferring the title of Pastor Emeritus is an expression of affection and gratitude by our congregation and of the desire to continue the association in an honorary relationship, but with no pastoral authority or duty.

  • Bonham

    Judy Bonham

    Organist

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    Judy has been the organist and bell choir director at Fort Hill Presbyterian Church since 2005.  Previous positions include children’s choir director at Fort Hill and organist/choir director at Walhalla Presbyterian Church.  She received a Master’s Degree in Organ Performance from Indiana University and recently retired from twenty-seven years of public school music teaching in Oconee County.  She lives in Seneca and has one son, Mark.  In her spare time, Judy likes to work with glass jewelry and also plays the hammered dulcimer.

  • MacKay

    Margaret MacKay

    Director of Music

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    Margaret has served as Director of Music since 2010. Her duties include directing the Chancel Choir, beginning a music ministry for youth, helping to develop a music program for the 8:30 service, and continuing to grow the overall music program of children, chimes, and handbells. She has served in church work for 45+ years as an organist and choral director in the upstate.

    Margaret and her husband, Raymond, have 5 grown children and finally have grandchildren now and it is GRAND!! They are thankful to be part of the Fort Hill family. “Music is an integral part of our lives and the ministry of the church, allowing us all as choirs and congregations to raise our voices in praise and glory to our God.”

  • Houck

    Lori Houck

    Administrator

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    Lori joined the staff at Fort Hill as Administrator in April of 2009. Her primary responsibilities are the day-to-day financial operations, office/facility management, and supervision of the Administrative Assistant and Facilities Manager. Her previous work experience included office management, accounting and human resources positions in church, non-profit, and corporate environments. Lori lives in Seneca and has two grown children, Sean and Sarah. In her spare time, she enjoys knitting, sewing, and other needlecrafts. She also enjoys spending time with her family…both human and pets.

  • Bryant

    Morgan Bryant

    Administrative Assistant

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    Morgan joined Fort Hill Church as church Administrative Assistant in February 2022 after serving in a six-month internship beginning in August 2021. Morgan is a graduate of Southern Wesleyan and lives in Clemson with her husband, Andrew, and their cat.

  • Thrailkill

    Scott Thrailkill

    Facilities Manager

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  • McCord

    Kelly McCord

    Coordinator of Faith Formation

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    Kelly joined the community of Fort Hill in May of 2024 as the Coordinator of Faith Formation. Growing up in Greer, she spent many weekends attending Clemson football games. Unlike most of her tiger family, Kelly attended Presbyterian College, receiving a degree in Christian Education. Upon graduation, she moved to Tampa, FL, to work at Palma Ceia Presbyterian Church, becoming the Assistant Program Director of Children’s Ministries. After five years of church ministry, Kelly came home to be closer to family. Kelly desires to help the children, youth, and families form a lifelong faith that shines the light of Christ’s love to everyone in their community. When not at Church, Kelly is spending most of her time in the woods, gardening and caring for her chickens. Her favorite joy is to be in awe of God’s beautiful creations by playing outside.