Tom Albin is the eldest of four children raised on the family farm, Tom’s elementary education was in a one-room schoolhouse on the Kansas prairie. After his secondary education in Quinter, he attended Ottawa University for two years before transferring to Oral Roberts University where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1973 (Magna Cum Laude). After serving as a full-time youth director, Tom answered God’s call to ministry and was ordained a deacon in the United Methodist Church in the spring of 1977. From 1977-78 he attended Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, earning a M.A. in Theological and Historical Studies (with honors) before traveling to England in September of 1978 to begin the first of four years of doctoral study at Cambridge.
From 1982-1985, Rev. Albin served as an associate pastor in a church of more than 5,000 members. There he gave leadership to the areas of Evangelism and Discipleship, Lay Counseling, and College Ministries. In 1987 Tom joined the faculty of Boston University School of Theology where he taught courses in American Church History, Wesley Studies, Evangelism and Church Growth. The following year he accepted the invitation to develop a program in Christian Spiritual Formation at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary. In addition to teaching, Tom served as the Director of Contextual Education Program for the seminary from June of 1992 until February of 1999 when he moved to his current position in Nashville. In 2013, as a part of his work with The Upper Room, Tom because the Executive Director of the United Christian Ashrams, International (UCAI). Today 30% of his time is given to the work of the UCAI.
Tom’s academic interests lie in the areas of spiritual formation, Wesley studies, historical theology, mission and evangelism. Recent publications containing his work include: “John Wesley” in the New Dictionary of Theology: Historical and Systematic (2016); “Methodist Spirituality” in The T&T Clark Handbook on Methodism (2010); “The Experience of God” in The Oxford Handbook on Methodism (2009);“Inwardly Persuaded”: Religion of the Heart in Early British Methodism in the volume “Heart Religion in the Methodist Tradition, edited by Richard B. Steele; Teach Me to Pray; a chapter in Wesleyan Theology Today, edited by T. Runyan; numerous meditations in The Upper RoomDevotional Guide and Disciplines; Charles Wesley’s Earliest Evangelical Sermons; Charles Wesley: Poet and Theologian; and articles related to Methodism and spiritual formation. for the New Dictionary of Christian Theology, and the Dictionary ofChristianity in America.
Tom and his wife, Maryle, have three married daughters and seven grandchildren.
Contact Tom Albin via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hal Hamilton has been the Youth and College Team leader at First United Methodist in Tulsa since 2006. He is married and has been doing life and youth ministry with his wife Annamarie full-time since 1986. He has five children, ages 17 to 25.
Hal attended college at Asbury University where he played soccer for the Eagles. He later earned a M.Div from Asbury Seminary and a Doctor of Ministry in Youth, Family and Culture from Fuller Seminary in Pasadena, CA. He has written for Abingdon Press, Immerse Journal, and seedbed.com.
Hal is a United Methodist deacon, a certified Sticky Faith trainer and coach, and an adjunct professor of youth ministry at Oklahoma Wesleyan University. He loves basketball, soccer, mission, worship, teenagers and young adults, chocolate cheesecake and the Rocky Mountains. He is an assistant high school basketball coach for the defending 1A NCHBC National Champions. He occasionally blogs at halhamilton.com
Youth & College Team Leader
Tulsa First United Methodist
Marjorie Black is a gifted United Methodist Bible Teacher. She has been an active leader in church music, missions, visitation, Lay Servant ministries, and ministry to women, children, youth, and senior adults. However, her most valued skill is her leadership with small group Bible studies and her passion to help people of all ages understand and live the sacred scripture.
Marjorie has a Master’s Degree in English Education. She has taught school, worked in the government as a Program Analyst, and served as an Internal Auditor with government contractors. She is a gifted administrator.
Marjorie participated in the 75th Anniversary of the United Christian Ashram in New Brunswick, Canada; and, she is the Bible Teacher for the 2017 Blue Lake Christian Ashram in Alabama. Marjorie is devoted to Jesus Christ and is eager to share her testimony of a life of faith.
She is married to Rev. Allen Black who currently serves as a District Superintendent in the Tennessee Annual Conference. Together, they have served churches in Mississippi and Tennessee for the past 25 years.
Marjorie and Allen have 5 children and 18 grandchildren.
Contact Marjorie Black via email: MarjorieBlack@gmail.com
Frank Holbrook lives in Martin TN and is an active member of the First United Methodist Church of Martin. He serves as Conference President of the United Methodist Men and is a member of the Episcopacy Committee for the Memphis Conference.
Brother Frank graduated from Florida State University in 1974 and the University of Georgia Law School in 1979 before moving to Jackson, Mississippi. He worked with a number of law firms in Jackson and eventually joined the law firm of Butler Snow. Frank will retire from Butler Snow at the end of 2017 and will continue to serve as a civil mediator.
Over the years Frank has been involved in a number of Lay ministries including Mississippi Methodist Cursillo, the Walk to Emmaus, Kairos Prison ministry at Parchman Prison, the Happening (a fourth-day ministry to high school students) and the Journey (a fourth-day ministry for college students). He has provided his witness and message to numerous churches and groups. He has a special heart for men’s ministries and is currently working with the Abba Conference, ministry for men.
Frank is Board Counsel for the NW TN Entrepreneurial Center and President of the NW TN Angel Fund, LLC. (a fund making investments in early stage startup companies).
Frank and his wife Norma have two children and three grandchildren.
Contact Frank Holbrook via email: Frankmh1952@gmail.com
David Reed is a Tennessee businessman who founded companies involved in manufacturing, commercial real estate, business brokerage, investment banking, and an auto dealership. He is also a farmer and continues to manage the family farm on Reed Farm Road. However, David is most of all a disciple of Jesus Christ and church leader. He has served at every level in the United Methodist Church: the local church, the district and he is currently serving his second term as the Lay Leader of the Memphis Conference. David likes to point out that his involvement in United Methodist Church leadership began with his desire to help men at his local church grow in their relationship Jesus Christ and with each other. Recently, David was elected by the laity of the Memphis Conference to lead their delegation to the 2016 General Conference in Portland, Oregon.
Currently serves as Vice President of Development and Planned-Giving for The United Methodist Foundation of the Memphis and Tennessee Annual Conferences. He is also a member of the Southeast Jurisdictional Committee on Episcopacy and on various other boards and ministries of the United Methodist Church.
In the past, David has served on the Governing Boards of the United Methodist Men Foundation, the Foundation for Evangelism and the Society of Saint Andrew. When asked to identify the experience that has brought about the most spiritual transformation in his life, David said, “That is an easy question to answer. It is a group of 8 men from across the country that meet together electronically for one hour each Tuesday morning using the model and curriculum of Wesleyan Building Brothers. This group has been going for seven years. In the beginning, I knew a few of the men and others were complete strangers. Today we are truly brothers in Christ. I would trust these men with my life, my business, and my family. I believe it is God’s will for every man to have deep, Christ-centered men who can help us become spiritual fathers and grandfathers.”
Contact David Reed via email: email@example.com
Rebekah Bled has served in missions in Central America and Europe, as a Youth Minister in South America, and now as the College and Young Adult Minister at First United Methodist Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Rebekah is a graduate of Oklahoma Wesleyan University and an Intercultural Studies and Church Planting student at Asbury Theological Seminary. She is married to her soulmate, Philippe. Rebekah likes telling stories, collecting magnets at airports, and empowering the agency of teenagers and young adults.