Our Countryside Staff

  • Rev. Dr. Paul Wilke

    Senior Pastor

    wilke@countrysideumc.org

    Pastor Paul Wilke loves God - loves people! He is married with two grown children. He has served churches in England, Texas, and across Kansas. Paul earned his bachelor's of philosophy from Southwestern College, master's of divinity from Perkins School of Theology Southern Methodist University, and doctorate in ministry from United Theological Seminary. Before ministry, Paul played professional basketball in southern France. At 6'8" tall, he still plays hoops. New to Countryside in 2017, Paul has quickly found joy in fulfilling the mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ in Topeka.

  • Rev. Jeff Potter

    Associate Pastor

    ASSOCIATEPASTOR@COUNTRYSIDEUMC.ORG


  • rev. nancy gammill

    congregational care Pastor

    Nancyg@countrysideumc.org

    Pastor Nancy was born and raised in Manhattan, Kansas. She attended Iowa State University where she earned her bachelor's degree in early childhood education. She also holds a master's degree in special education from the University of Minnesota, and later earned her divinity degree from St. Paul School of Theology. Nancy has served churches in Missouri, Louisiana, and Kansas. She served as District Superintendent in the Five Rivers and Flint Hills districts in what was at the time, Kansas East Conference. Widowed (her husband was a pastor also), Nancy has two children, Mark and Matthew, and two grandchildren.

  • heather hoffmans

    office & facilities administrator

    Heather@countrysideumc.org

    Heather holds a degree in business administration from Baker University and is a Topeka native. She has worked in the field of dentistry assisting chair side and office management, as well as in health and life insurance sales. She began working at Countryside as a temporary hire and became a full-time employee in 2013. She is married with four children and one grandchild. Heather enjoys time with family and pets, bird watching, flower gardening,  keeping up with technology and binge watching documentary series.

  • lisa lester

    bookkeeper

    bookkeeper@countrysideumc.org

    Profile coming soon.

  • Sharon Austin

    giving secretary

    GIVING@COUNTRYSIDEUMC.ORG


    Profile coming soon.

  • Brittney Tilley

    Director of Countryside  child development center

    CCDCdirector@COUNTRYSIDEUMC.ORG

    Brittney has an associate's degree in early childhood. Brittney has been in the childcare field since 2010.She loves what she does because she gets to make a difference in many children's lives and watch them grow up. Brittney lives in Topeka with her husband Bob, and their children Ryleigh and Cameron, dog Charlie, and cat Luna. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with family, crafting with her Cricut, and watching K-State and KC football.

  • becky ericson

    children's ministry coordinator

    becky@countrysideumc.org

    Becky earned her bachelor's degree in elementary education with an emphasis in middle school education & mathematics, and a master's degree in education. She taught fourth and seventh grades in the Kansas City area before moving to Topeka. She enjoyed being home with her 2 children through their preschool years and continues to treasure time with family. In her spare time, Becky loves hiking & running, all things Disney, Einstein (family dog), coffee, and just about anything related the the arts..

  • rebecca bowles

    Youth ministry Coordinator

    rebecca@countrysideumc.org

    Rebecca is Youth Ministry Coordinator for Countryside, and has served our youth in this position for several years now. She has her bachelor's degree from Baker University in communication and social justice. She recently attained her master's in education from Kansas State University. Rebecca lives in Lawrence with her husband Alek, their two sons Beckett and Cutler, and their two dogs. Rebecca loves what she does and says that she sees God constantly when working with youth.

  • paul swank

    young adult, college & sport ministry coordinator

    Paul@countrysideumc.org

    Paul is a member of Countryside, as well as coordinator of College, Young Adult & Sport Ministries. Please contact Paul to find out how you can get involved in one of these fun groups!

  • brenda bauman swank

    member development & missions coordinator

    brenda@countrysideumc.org

    Brenda grew up on a farm in northeast Kansas, graduated from Bern High School and received her bachelor's degree from Washburn University. In addition to years of farm chores, work experience is drawn from working as a nursing home administrator and in medical records and billing. She also worked as piano accompanist for high school choirs. Her favorite "job" has been a mom of four (now lovely young adult) children. In spite of anything shared by her spouse, Paul, or those beautiful children, she is a fun mom! In any spare time, Brenda loves to hang out and play games with family, go outside to garden and walk, and loves music, reading, sewing and travel.

  • Frank towle [he/him]

    Connections Minister

    CONNECT@COUNTRYSIDEUMC.ORG

    Frank Towle was raised in Osage City, Kansas with a long, strong, Catholic background. After struggling with his faith during his 20’s and meeting Jennifer Abrahamson Towle, he converted to Methodist. He earned his bachelor’s degree in elementary education with an emphasis in special education and his master’s degree in special education from Emporia State University. He recently retired after teaching 30 years in special education. Frank is widowed, spends his time camping, kayaking, playing with his schnauzers, and being schooled in “how to be cool” by his two adult daughters. Frank has become addicted to pickleball and has no power saying no when asked to play.

  • jamie meyer

    worship & arts director

    jamie@countrysideumc.org

    Jamie began her career in music as a music education teacher. She taught elementary music in Ponca City, OK; Chalmette, LA; and overseas in West Papua, Indonesia. Upon her return to the US, she began working at Countryside UMC first with the children's music, then orchestra and Soul-Full Singers until she was moved into the role of Worship and Arts Director in 2007. In addition to directing several music groups, she oversees the worship services including volunteer personnel, music and decorations.

  • jane anderson

    organist & handbell Director

    Jane is Countryside's organist and also director of bell choirs, including the Laudate Ringers. In addition to her commitment to Countryside, she directs workshops and festivals throughout the U.S. and has directed three national handbell festivals of the Bahamas. Jane is a graduate of the University of Kansas and taught handbells as part of the master in church music program at KU. She is published in Creator magazine, and also written for Overtones (of the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers). She and her husband Bill have two children and six beautiful grandchildren.

  • dr. bill anderson

    sanctuary choir & "hands in praise" puppet ministry director

    Bill received his doctorate of fine arts degree from the University of Kansas in 1981. He has directed choral ensembles and taught music at Kansas Wesleyan University and the University of Kansas. In addition, he directed the Chancel Choir at Topeka First Baptist Church for 25 years and has directed the Sanctuary Choir and "Hands in Praise" puppet ministry at Countryside United Methodist Church since 2008. Bill has composed and published six children's sacred musicals.He and his wife Jane have two children and six beautiful grandchildren.

  • jenna meyer

    child care coordinator

    Jenna is a recent graduate of Washburn University with a degree in criminal justice and legal studies. She has worked many years in Countryside's Child Care and is now coordinating the program part-time. She grew up dancing at Barbara's Conservatory of Dance learning ballet, jazz, liturgical, lyrical, modern and hip-hop; later becoming a member of Washburn University's dance team.  Jenna loves to scuba dive in the ocean and hopes to one day live close to a beach!

  • ernest hickerson

    custodian


    Profile coming soon. Please send all facility requests to Office & Facilities Administrator.

  • christi steward

    wedding liaison

    Christi is a member of Countryside and involved in UMW Embrace Circle, Soul-full Singers, Families Sunday School, and Youth Group as a sponsor, as well as Wedding Liaison for couples planning their special day. She has worked professionally in phlebotomy and medical assisting for 30 years. She is a mother of two young adult daughters. In her free time, Christi enjoys reading and spending time with friends and family. Please contact Christi if you are ready to begin planning your wedding!

Employment Opportunities

Thank you for your interest in careers at Countryside!

We are currently not hiring. Please check again soon.


We do have many volunteer opportunities available!

Please take a look at our large variety of ministry areas to get connected or go to Group Finder

to join a small group, ministry area or other activity.

Please check back again soon!