Staff Directory

Kevin Thomas, Senior Pastorkevin-thomas-cropped

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Kevin holds a B.A. from the University of Alabama, a Master of Divinity from Memphis Theological Seminary, and a Doctorate in Christian Leadership and Spiritual Formation from Asbury Theological Seminary. In his 28th year of pastoral ministry, Kevin’s real interest is in meeting people where they are. There’s no need for pretense at Forest Lake! Everyone is welcome! As a community, we are working to help people become all that God designed them to be. For Kevin, the goal is not church growth, but new, fulfilling life for those all across our community. With God’s help, he is leading the church to be Christ followers creating the life God intends.

Kevin is married to Melissa who holds a B.S. in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from the University of Alabama. They have three children, Michael, Katherine, and Olivia.

Melody Traylor
Melody Traylor, Pastoral Assistant

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Rev. Melody Traylor works with the missions and the shut-ins in our church. Melody is also the director of Discovery Ministries. Discovery is a weekend event for middle schoolers for spiritual formation. Discovery Weekend is in 23 states and three countries. Melody has two children and she is a nerd at heart who loves reading, plants, rocks and kayaking. Melody also enjoys playing cards and chess.

If you would like to be involved in missions, please let her know.

Talmage McDonald III, Director of Ethnic Ministriestalmage-mcdonald

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Talmage McDonald is originally from Evanston Illinois and a proud graduate of Evanston Township High School. He started his collegiate career in the summer of 2000 at Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, AL. After getting his basic curriculum out the way he then transferred to Shelton State Community College to earn his Associates Degree in Sociology with a minor in Social Work. During his undergraduate career Talmage found his passion for helping underprivileged youth through education. Talmage has worked in Juvenile Corrections, Youth Outpatient Facilities, Federal Trio Programs, K-12 school systems and State Social Service Agencies. Upon completion of his Masters of Higher Education Administration in 2009, Talmage took a position with a branch of the Federal Trio Program called Student Support Services which he found rewarding but he felt he was limited on the help he could give his students. After much prayer and time off he decided to pursue his PhD of Social and Cultural Studies at the University Of Alabama School Of Education. Today, Talmage is in his fourth year of the program, teaches part time at the University Of Alabama, runs a small Non Profit that focuses on Transitional Living, and is a Graduate Ambassador for the University Of Alabama Graduate School.

Susan DickinsonSusan Dickinson, Director of Children’s Ministries

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More to come soon.

Tommy Flowers

Tommy Flowers, Director of Youth Ministries

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Tommy has been the Youth Director at Forest Lake since August, 2002.
He has over 25 years of experience in youth ministry. From “Music With a Message” to “The Gospel According to Spongebob”, Tommy enjoys creating fun and unique programming for today’s youth. Tommy is also a 6th grade teacher at University Place Middle School. He is the curator of the World’s Smallest Museum, Edgar’s Closet. It is a homage to all things Edgar Allan Poe is his classroom closet. He is married to Erin and has four children, Will, Katie, Brayden and Charley. In his spare time, Tommy loves camping and bicycling.

Barry Turner
Barry Turner, Connections Worship Leader

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Barry is married to the former Evelyn Suzette Crawford of Harvest, Alabama. She goes by Susie, and they have a married son, Ben. Susie is a reading teacher extraordinare at Creek View Elementary School in Maylene, Alabama. At a young age in 1978, they decided to spend the rest of their lifes together – aggravating each other and loving life to the fullest; so far, so good. Barry, playing the guitar since learning from a songwriter in Nashville, has been blessed to have shared the stage with Minnie Pearl, been run out of the recording studio by Roy Orbison, (literally), and avoided a hit and run misdemeanor by narrowly missing Jimmy Buffet as the Parrot-Head jay-walked across Music Row (“Hey, I was in a hurry!”) His group, “Unlimited” was the studio band for WSM-TV’s syndicated show “Young Country.”

Barry’s musical experience in the United Methodist Church starts with being choir director for various churches, being music leader for the North Alabama Emmaus Community, the Alabama Young Adult Chrysalis, and contemporary worship leader for various churches in the North Alabama Conference.

In his spare time, Barry enjoys playing with and being loved by his grandson, Michael; and by his two dachshunds, BJ and Daphne.

Deanna Clements
Deanna Clements, Administrative Assistant

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Deanna is a native of Tupelo, Mississippi. She is a graduate of the University of Mississippi with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English & Journalism, and a Masters Degree in Journalism.

She has had 12 years of experience in administrative support before coming to work at FLUM.

Velma Willaims

Velma Williams, Director of Weekday Kids Program

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Velma Williams has directed Weekday Children’s Ministries at Forest Lake UMC since 1982, including 17 years directing the After School Enrichment Program and as director, since 2000, of the Weekday Kids Programs – which includes My School Preschool, After School, and Summer Camp.

Other work experience includes teaching various age levels from preschoolers to adult learners. Velma has a B. S. degree from Southern Illinois University in Home Economics and a M.S. from the University of Alabama in Human Development and Family Studies.

Velma has been married since 1974 to Dr. Vergil Williams, retired from U/A, and they now travel frequently. Her daughter Colleen, son-in-law Bob and grandchildren Lauren and Alex live in Atlanta. In addition to travel, she enjoys spending time with her family, cats, reading and a variety of crafts.

Shundre Nevels-Bishop, Assistant Director of Weekday Kids

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Shundré has been a part of the Forest Lake United Methodist Church since 2001. She and her daughter, Demi, enjoy being a part of the Forest Lake family. Shundré has an undergraduate degree in Early Childhood Development and Family Studies and a graduate degree in Counseling / Psychology.

Shundré is the Thrilling Threes teacher with the Weekday Kids Program and the Forest Lake Church Nursery Coordinator.

Janet Scott Edwards

Janet Scott Edwards, Assistant Director of Weekday Kids

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Janet has been on staff at Forest Lake United Methodist Church since
1995. She began working with the After School Program while attending the University of Alabama. In 1998 she graduated from the University with a degree in Secondary Education Social Science. When the After School Program, the My School Preschool Program, and the Summer Camp program were combined into the Weekday Children’s Ministries Program in 2000, Janet became the Assistant Director. Janet is married and has 2 children.

More Coming in the Future
Email Karla Johnson
Email Lisa Price