Pastor John MadvigPastor John Madvig

Orvette Stepper
Administrative Assistant
Orvette is the Administrative Assistant at the church and has been employed at the church since May of 1998. She has thoroughly enjoyed her position at the church since the very beginning. She loves helping people with answers to their questions and sharing information about events at the church. She joined the Handbell Choir at the church about 13 years ago and has enjoyed learning how to play and perform with the group. Orvette was born in Deadwood, SD and is the oldest of six children. She has three children, Connie, Naomi and Jeremy who are all married and together she has six grandchildren. Orvette has also lived in Las Vegas, NV for over 30 years and in Juneau, Alaska for almost four years but Spearfish has always been home for her.

Katelyn Smith
Children's Ministries Director
Katelyn Smith is the Children’s Ministries Director at the church, and has been employed since February 2022. You can usually find Katelyn teaching Children’s Sunday School, or putting on seasonal family & child-oriented events surrounding holidays, seasonal family block parties, or Vacation Bible School with the CYFM committee.

Katelyn moved with her parents, dogs and younger brother from Ohio to South Dakota in 2020 to be near family in the Spearfish area, and has been thoroughly happy to have gotten to be a part of the Spearfish community ever since. She obtained a Bachelor's of Science in Education at BGSU, and is currently working on her bachelor's degree in SPED/Elementary Education & Educational Technology online at DSU, and when she's not working and studying, she enjoys reading, hiking, and spending time with her dogs and family.

Colleen McKirdy
Choir Director
Director of Children's Music
Colleen serves as adult choir director, children’s music leader, and “Gathering” worship pianist. She also teaches private piano lessons and accompanies music students at Black Hills State University. She and her husband Scott have two grown daughters, and have lived in various communities in South and North Dakota. Colleen holds degrees from Northern State University and the University of Denver. Her hobbies include reading, crocheting, scrapbooking, making music, and Star Trek. Colleen is also a certified yoga instructor and leads a yoga class at the church.

Mary Tracy, Financial Assistant
Mary was born in Isabelle, SD. Her father was a Methodist minister so her early years were lived in several South Dakota communities; Timber Lake, Faith, Alexandria, Onida, and Hitchcock.
She obtained her Bachelor of Arts at Augustana University in Sioux Falls and later her Masters in Business Administration at Regis University in Denver, Colorado. She has held several positions in accounting such as accounts payable, receivables, general ledger and has managed compensation, human resources, payroll and benefits. Her background also includes project management for installation of human resources, payroll and benefit systems.
She and her husband Mark recently moved to Spearfish from Windsor, Colorado, which is half way between Mary’s family in South Dakota and Mark’s family in the Denver area.

Barbara Elving
Handbell Director
Barbara has spent many years singing, playing instruments, including handbells, and directing/teaching handbells and children's music across the country. She just finished serving on the Board of Directors of Area 7 Handbell Musicians of America as the South Dakota Sub-Area Chair, is a board member with Bells of the Hills where she handles marketing/promotions, acts as an educational liaison with area schools, and has been a ringer since their founding. She and husband John met at a Church Music and Worship Conference in California. It was their love of being crazy and also their love of God and the work He had for them that brought them together.

Barry Penn

Carrie Swanson
Nursery Supervisor
Carrie is a graduate of Dakota Wesleyan University in Mitchell, SD. She received her babysitter's certification when she was twelve years old and has enjoyed working with children ever since. She started babysitting her younger cousins and has been involved with children and youth ever since. Frequently she helps out on Wednesdays with the youth group and enjoys helping out with Vacation Bible School in the summers.In her free time, she likes spending time with her family and watching her nieces. She enjoys doing crafts, everything from painting to knitting, to embroidery. Carrie always looks forward to spending time with your children on Sunday mornings and sharing God’s love with them!

Kevin Nakajima
Church Technology Coordinator
Kevin holds the position of Church Technology Coordinator, but also serves the church with his voice, both in the choir and through solos. Born in Prescott, AZ, he moved to Vale, SD just before high school, then attended Northern State University in Aberdeen, SD for Vocal Music and History. He came to Spearfish in Early 2017 to take care of his parents. He participates in the Northern Hills Chamber Chorale and the Black Hills State University Community Band. In his free time, he enjoys movies, television, reading, and walking in nature.

Emma McKirdy-Wilsey
Emma is a musician and teacher here in Spearfish, serving in many roles around the community. As a pianist and organist, she holds the “Sanctuary” organist position here at the church and accompanies in many other places around the Black Hills. She also teaches piano lessons from her home and from The Music Room. As well as teaching piano, she is a literacy paraprofessional in the local kindergarten, Mountain View Elementary. She holds Bachelor and Master degrees in piano performance from Simpson College and the University of South Dakota. Emma enjoys participating in local music ensembles, reading, and cuddling with her cat, Rachmaninoff. She is happily married to Benjamin, and together they have a beautiful daughter.

Sue Cole
Choir Accompanist
Sue Cole, our choir accompanist, attended the University of Wyoming earning a B.A. in Music K-12 and K-8 Elementary Education. Her Masters work was in Guidance and Counseling. She taught third grade and music in several places in Wyoming as boom and bust cycles affecting schools RIFd the arts first.
She started accompanying choir in junior high and accompanied choirs and played for churches in several communities in WY. She has sung in Walk Festival Hall in Teton Village, WY and in Carnegie Hall with the Wyoming State Choir. She sings with the Northern Hills Chamber Chorale and is a member of the Quilters and Crafters of our church.

Michelle Jennings
Blue Jeans Worship Leader
Michelle currently leads the worship team at the Saturday night Blue jeans service which she
has been a part of since it first began in 1995. She also enjoys the style of taize and brought it
to Spearfish UMC in 2016, what started out as a few services during advent and lent, has now
become a monthly service. She enjoys the opportunity to play and sing with the many talented
musicians at both services.
Most of her childhood was in Pennsylvania, eventually ending up in South Dakota at SDSU
where she received her pharmacy degree and also met her husband, Eric. They were married
in 1987 and were able to move back to the ranch in 1988. And are currently living in the house
Eric grew up in.
She is a pharmacist in Belle Fourche at Lynn’s Dakotamart where she works part time. In
addition to playing music at church, she enjoys playing music with a gamelan group, helping out
on the ranch, gardening and biking.