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    The Upper New York Conference of The United Methodist Church


    Lay Ministry

    Laity serve an important role in The United Methodist Church. Search below to find your District's lay leader and other laity in leadership. Looking for information on Lay Servant Ministries? Click here.

    Click here to view the laity session agenda for the 2019 UNY Annual Conference.

    Conference Lay Leader
    Conference Lay Servant Director
    Adirondack District
    Albany District
    Binghamton District
    Cornerstone District
    Crossroads District
    Finger Lakes District
    Genesee Valley District
    Mohawk District
    Mountain View District
    Niagara Frontier District
    Northern Flow District
    Oneonta District
    United Methodist Men
    United Methodist Women
    Conference Council on Youth Ministries
    Young Adult Ministries
    At Large Members
    Conference Support Staff

    Conference Lay Leader: Susan Hardy

    Phone: (716) 785-9383

    Our Conference Lay Leader is Susan G. Hardy. Susan is a retired public school teacher and member of the Brocton Tri-Church Parish in the Cornerstone District. She has served in her local church as a choir member, Sunday School teacher, lay leader, secretary of Administrative Council, and Chair of Administrative Council.

    At District level, Susan has participated on the District Committee on Ordained Ministry since 2012, was appointed District Lay Leader in 2014, chaired the Superintendency Committee and District Leadership Team, served on the Lay Servant Committee, and continues to offer messages in many churches as a Certified Lay Speaker.

    Susan attended her first Annual Conference as a lay member in 2011. She was nominated to the Reaching Our Neighbors Mission Oversight Team in the fall of 2011 and served as convener from 2012-2016. She was invited to join the FACT team in 2014-15, and participated in the Board of Laity and Nominations Team from 2014-16.

    Leadership is familiar to Susan. She has served as president of a school board, and chair of a county political party, among numerous other roles.

    Susan is married to Randy Hardy, and they have a daughter, Amanda, and a son, Adam. 

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    Conference Lay Servant Director: Lucina Hallagan

    Phone: (315) 945-9444

    Lucina has a degree in Human Resources Management from RIT. She currently works as H.R. Manager at Hallagan Furniture, has been a Lay Servant since 1991, a District Director of Lay Servant Ministries from 2012 to 2016 and currently is the Upper New York Conference Director. She has been a member of Newark First UMC her entire life and has faithfully served in many areas of ministry including Small Group Leader, Youth Mission Leader, Sunday School teacher and now as Media Ministry Director.  Lucina also serves on the Finger Lakes District Superintendency Team.  Lucina is married to Steve, has three children, Rev. Colleen Preuninger, Maggie and Andrew Hallagan. She uses Acts 20:24 (MSG) as an anchor scripture for her life: “What matters most to me is to finish what God started: the job the Master Jesus gave me of letting everyone I meet know all about this incredibly extravagant generosity of God.”

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    Adirondack District: Gracie Lynn Besse


    Albany District: Ellen Mall-John

    Phone: (518) 505-8529

    Binghamton District: Drew Griffin (Assoc. Conference Lay Leader)

    Phone: (607) 972-4331


    Cornerstone District: Richard  Preston

    Phone: (716) 942-6651

    Crossroads District:

    Darlene Dennis

    Phone: (315) 699-4266


    Robert Mueller

    Phone: (315) 345-8675




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    Finger Lakes District:

    Shafeegh Habeeb

    Phone: (315) 536-1963



    Jennie Young-Walczyk

    Phone: (603) 667-8273



    Genesee Valley District: Peter Lagueras




    Mohawk District: Mark Adsit

    Phone: (315) 725-9979

    Mountain View District: Ann Welch Wood

    Phone: (607) 215-1533

    Niagara Frontier District: Jessica White

    Phone: (716) 536-1820

    Northern Flow District: Brenda Shelmidine

    Phone: (315) 232-2801


    Oneonta District: Anna Buell

    Phone: (607) 847-8513


    United Methodist Men: Steve Ranous, Vice President

    Phone: (315) 427-3515

    United Methodist Women: Carmen Vianese, President

    Phone: (585) 519-6980

    Conference Council on Youth Ministries

    George Taylor

    Phone: (607) 339-1269




    Rachel John

    Phone: (518) 300-5821

    Young Adult Ministries

    Elyse Muder

    Phone: (315) 520-5142




    JJ Warren

    Phone: (315) 398-4541






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    At Large Members

    Blenda Smith

    Phone: (607) 761-0327



    Deborah Clyde

    Phone: (585) 413-6057

    Conference Support Staff

    Rev. Dr. Aaron Bouwens, Director of Vital Congregations

    Phone: (607) 591-5780


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    With more than 144,000 members, the Upper New York Annual (Regional) Conference of The United Methodist Church comprises 865 local churches and 91 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."