Area Conference Minister Team

Area Conference Minister Team

The Area Conference Minister Team seeks to  inspire and provoke local churches  and associations to discover how God is calling them to be the church in a new era.  We serve as the face of the Vision of the conference to local churches, associations, and covenant partners.  We help churches identify the gifts they can offer to their communities.  We support local churches in times of transition, helping them to see beyond what is to what is possible through the leading of the Spirit.  We resource and guide the work of committees on church and ministry as they authorize persons for ministry and maintain ministerial standing for clergy.  We work cooperatively with other Conference Teams to embody the vision of the Southern New England Conference.

Go here for a map that show the regions of the Conference


Michael Ciba (he-him)

Rev. Dr. Michael Ciba

Team Leader; Area Conference Minister for the Southwest Region
Fairfield East, Fairfield West, Litchfield South, New Haven, New Haven East Consociation and Naugatuck Valley Associations
Email:    Phone:

Rev. Michael Ciba walks with churches and associations in the Southwest Region to help them discover how God is calling them to live the love and justice of Jesus  in this new and wondrous time.  Churches in the Southwest Region can contact Rev. Ciba for assistance with:

  • Pastoral transitions.
  • Committee on Ministry practices
  • Local church vision, mission, best practices, and organizational structure in a time of cultural change. 

Rhonda Myers (she-her)

Rev. Rhonda Myers

Bridge Area Conference Minister South Central Region (she-her)
Central CT, Farmington Valley, Hartford, Hartford East, Middlesex, New London and Tolland Associations
Email:   Phone:  

Rev. Rhonda Myers supports and resources clergy, congregations, and associations of the South Central region in their efforts to live the love and justice of Jesus in their locale. She will serve in this role while the search for a settled ACM continues.  Contact her for support with:

  • Pastoral Transitions
  • Committees on Church and Ministry  

Rev. Myers enjoys knitting and exploring outdoors. She shares a home in Vermont with her husband of 37 years. 

Jill Ford  (she-her)

Jill Ford

Program Support Associate
Email:     Phone: 860-761-7112

Jill Ford provides program support for the Area Conference Ministers serving associations, clergy and churches in the Southwest and South Central Regions of the Conference, and supports several Connecticut legacy programs including scholarships and resources for retired clergy.  Contact her for:

  • General inquiries
  • Pulpit supply lists
  • Clergy information changes

Terry Yasuko Ogawa (she-her)

Rev. Terry Yasuko Ogawa

Area Conference Minister for the Northwest Region
Berkshire, Franklin, Hampshire, Hampden, Litchfield North Associations
Email:    Phone:  508-782-8593

Rev. Ogawa accompanies clergy and churches through adaptive change; times of transition; and discerning God’s call to meet the needs of their congregations and communities. Rev. Ogawa resources Committees on Ministry in the Northwest Region of the Conference.  Contact her for:

  • Assistance with pastoral transitions.
  • Discernment about next steps in ministry.
  • Healthy solutions to challenges in congregational life.
  • Preaching engagements and celebrating milestones in the life of your congregation.

Rev. Ogawa has always worked at the intersection of land, culture, and spirituality, which is evidenced in her pursuit to explore the hills and valleys of her region and learn regional food traditions—she welcomes your recommendations!

Liz Garrigan-Byerly

Rev. Liz Garrigan-Byerly

Area Conference Minister for the North Central Region
Central MA and Windham Associations
Email:    Phone: 508-281-9776  

Rev. Garrigan-Byerly accompanies congregations, clergy and committees on ministry in the North Central Region as they continually discern how to live the love and justice of Jesus in their context. She provides resources, support and holy provocation in the following areas:

  • Search & call process
  • Healthy processes and practices for congregational life
  • Formation, support and accountability of Authorized Ministry
Rev. Garrigan-Byerly enjoys quilting and gardening, wonderful metaphors for ministry, and shares daily life with her husband and elementary aged daughter

Deb Holmes

Deb Holmes

Program Support Associate 
Email:; Phone: 508-963-8106

Deb Holmes supports the Area Conference Ministers for the North Central and Northwest Regions of the Southern New England Conference as well as supporting the Association leadership, churches, and clergy. Contact her for:

  • Pulpit supply lists
  • Member in Discernment information
  • Transfers of standing
  • General inquiries

Alex Shea Will (he/him)

Rev. Alexander Shea Will;

Area Conference Minister for the Northeast Region
Northeast and Metropolitan Boston Associations
Email:    Office:          Cell: 

Rev. Shea Will accompanies clergy, congregations, and committees to live the love and justice of Jesus. He does so by providing broad denominational experience, deep technical knowledge and encouragement to practice discernment (PDF). Contact him for: 

  • Support of Committees on Ministry, with particular focus on the UCC Manual on Ministry
  • Support of the Search and Call Process
  • Assistance to clergy in specialized settings as well as local church pastors and retired ministers

Rev. Shea Will begins serving the Northeast Region August 2, 2021.    

Patty Kogut (she-her)

Rev. Dr. Patricia Kogut

Area Conference Minister for the Southeast Region
Barnstable, Old Colony, Pilgrim and Rhode Island Associations
Email:    Phone: 508-789-7957

Rev. Kogut accompanies clergy, congregations, and committees to live the love and justice of Jesus. She does so with over 30 years of parish experience, training in church vitality and conflict transformation, and as a PCC level coach.

  • Support of Committees on Ministry, with particular focus on the UCC Manual on Ministry
  • Support of the Search and Call Process
  • Assistance to clergy in specialized settings as well as local church pastors and retired ministers

The Rev. Kogut is excited about her expanded role in the Conference and enjoys her new home, walks, kayaking, and learning new and interesting musical instruments, most recently the "Pocket saxophone."

Lynn Varney (she-her)

Lynn Varney

Program Support Associate
Email:  Phone: 781-369-1396

Lynn Varney assists the ACM, Association leadership, churches and clergy with processing members in discernment, changes in standing, pulpit supply, meetings, and the Northeast and Southeast regional newsletters.  Contact her for:

  • Pulpit supply lists
  • Information for Members in Discernment
  • Clergy information changes

Martha Goodman (she-her)

Martha Goodman

Search & Call Associate

Email:     Cell:  774-804-0493

Martha Goodman supports Area Conference Ministers as they assist our churches seeking new pastors and ministers seeking a new call.  Contact her if:

  • You are an ordained UCC minister or Member in Discernment seeking a pastoral call
  • You are a church Search Committee member needing assistance with administrative matters related to your search
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Framingham, MA Office

1 Badger Road
Framingham, MA 01702
Fax: 508-875-5485

Hartford, CT Office

125 Sherman Street
Hartford, CT 06105
866-367-2822 (Toll Free in CT)

General Email: