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    The Upper New York Conference of The United Methodist Church


    news article

    Bishop names two new District Superintendents

    January 24, 2014 / By UNY Communications / .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

    Upper New York Area Resident Bishop Mark J. Webb is pleased to announce the appointment of two new District Superintendents.

    The Rev. Nancy Adams, director of the Caring Covenant Cooperative Parish and pastor at Newark Valley UMC, will be Superintendent of the Mountain View District.

    The Rev. Jeffrey McDowell, pastor at Centenary UMC in Bath, will be Superintendent of the Finger Lakes District. The appointments are effective July 1, 2014.

    “Both Rev. Adams and Rev. McDowell have demonstrated a passion and commitment to the mission of the Church throughout their pastoral ministry. Each of them has extensive leadership experience within their respective districts; both have served in various capacities in Upper New York, as well as in the predecessor conferences to which they belonged,” Bishop Webb said. “I am excited to have them join the work of the Cabinet, and I am certain that they will bring tremendous leadership to their districts and to the Conference as a whole.”

    Finger Lakes District Superintendent and Cabinet Dean the Rev. Richard Barton announced in November that he will retire June 30. Mountain View District Superintendent the Rev. Dr. Cathy Hall Stengel, whose term as DS was extended by a year in 2013, will be appointed to Rush UMC in the Genesee Valley District beginning July 1.

    “Dr. Stengel and Rev. Barton have been outstanding leaders and have added much to the life of the Cabinet and the work of the Conference,” Bishop Webb said. “While they will be deeply missed in this role, we know that God will continue to use their gifts in ways that will bless the Church and help us live our purpose of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.”

    Appointments extended

    The bishop also announced that district superintendents the Rev. Ted Anderson, Genesee Valley District; the Rev. Dr. Sung Ho Lee, Mohawk District, and the Rev. Jan Rowell, Oneonta District, will have their appointments extended by one year.

     This will be Rev. Lee’s eighth year leading the district; his term was extended in 2013 as well. Rev. Anderson and Rev. Rowell will each serve a seventh year in their respective districts.

     “The Conference has been blessed by the leadership of Dr. Lee, Rev. Anderson and Rev. Rowell,” said Bishop Webb. “Their sense of continued call to the ministry of superintendancy – along with their gifts – will provide vital and consistent leadership within the work of the Cabinet, the life of the Conference and in their respective districts.” 

    The Rev. Nancy Adams

    Rev. Adams, 54, who chairs the Binghamton District Committee on Ordained Ministry, has served in her current appointment since 2007.

    Prior to that she served a number of churches in the Binghamton area including serving as director of Christians United Together Cooperative Parish and pastor of Ransom and Bethel UMCs; she was pastor at Park Terrace UMC and associate pastor at Endwell UMC. She also served Northern Otsego Cooperative Parish and Hartwick and Mt. Vision UMCs in the Oneonta District, and the West Laurens Community Church.

    She was ordained a deacon in 1989 and as an elder in 1992. She earned her MDiv. from Drew University Theological School in Madison, N.J.; she has a master’s in education from SUNY Binghamton and a BS in special education/psychology from Russell Sage College in Troy.

    Rev. Adams lives in Newark Valley; she is single.

    The Rev. Jeffrey McDowell

    Rev. McDowell, 52, has served Centenary UMC since 1997; he serves as chair of Committee on Ordained Ministry in the Mountain View District.

    He served the Clyde UMC in Clyde, N.Y., and Nicholasville UMC in Kentucky, where he earned his MDiv. from Asbury Theological Seminary. He has a bachelor’s degree in religion from Berea College in Kentucky and an associate’s degree from Mohawk Valley Community College in Utica.

    Rev. McDowell was a full-time licensed local pastor before being ordained as deacon in 1989; he was ordained as an elder in 1991. He is currently working on his doctorate in ministry at Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Ill. 

     Rev. McDowell and his wife, Barbara, live in Bath. They have two sons Nathan, 23, and Evan, 17. 


    With more than 168,000 members, the Upper New York Annual (Regional) Conference of The United Methodist Church comprises 867 local churches and 65 new faith communities in 12 districts, covering 48,000 square miles in 49 of the 62 counties in New York state. Our mission is to “live the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to be God’s love with our neighbors in all places."