Support Staff | Music Staff
Meet our Team
James Witty (EXT. 203)
Dr. James L. Witty is the founder and President of Care Corps International. He has served as a pastor, therapist, and missionary in the church. He is an ordained Presbyterian minister and holds doctoral degrees in Psychology and Ministry. He is a Trauma Specialist and has extensive background and experience in conflict management, crisis counseling and team building. He has taught seminary and college courses in counseling and mission work with traumatized children. He is member of the Santa Barbara Presbytery and has served as Interim Pastor at several churches in the presbytery. Currently he is the Interim Pastor at First Presbyterian Church in San Luis Obispo, California.
Director of Front Porch Ministries
Joel was born and raised in Seattle, Washington. He did his undergraduate work at Whitworth University where he received his degree in Speech Communications. It was here that Joel discovered and fostered his God-given passion for ministry. It was also here that Joel met his beautiful wife Kristi. They have been married for the past nine years and have three children. Over the course of the last eight years they have lived in Pasadena, Joel has attended Fuller Theological Seminary where he recently completed his M.Div. Joel and his family are excited about this next adventure of their life and moving to the beautiful San Luis Obispo.
Dr. Jack Springer
Dr. Springer served as Pastor and Head of Staff at First Pres from September 1975 to March, 1990. He and his wife Judy love living on the Central Coast, spending time on the golf course being involved in the life grandson, Jason.
Jenifer Gordon-Rabenaldt (EXT. 205)
Director of Children's Education
Miss Jen is committed to making First Pres. a safe, loving and nurturing space for children and their families. She has been a part of First Pres. most of her life and is very loyal to the Church and Church Family. She works hard along with the Children's Ed. Team to offer the children activities that are current and will help guide them through their journey and faith development.
Tracy Whittemore (EXT. 207)
Tracy was born and raised in San Luis Obispo County, and has lived here her entire life. She attended Cal Poly University where she studied Music and Speech. She has been married for 27 years, and has two married daughters. Her passions are singing, making jewelry and garage saling.
Mia Purdin (EXT. 200)
Mia was born and raised in Santa Maria and has lived in San Luis Obispo since 2011. She and her handsome husband Andrew are the proud parents of Gabriel, who was born in March 2012. She attended Vanguard University studying Music and Worship Arts. Besides music, she loves cooking, reading, traveling, very strong coffee, and finding any excuse to shop at Target.
Mark Krist (EXT. 209)
Facilities & Maintenance Engineer
Mark is very pleased to be the Buildings & Maintenance Technician at First Presbyterian Church (FPC) San Luis Obispo. Mark has been a member of FPC since 2006 & has been an employee since August of 2012. Mark looks forward to continued opportunities to grow with God & to help FPC provide a safe, clean & effective place of worship for the community. In his free time, Mark like to be outside, go hiking, see new places, play in the garden & learn new things.
Jenifer Gordon-Rabenaldt (EXT. 205)
Wedding Coordinator & Interim Memorial Coordinator
Jenifer herself was married at First Pres. She is passionate about making sure this special day in the lives of the Bride & Groom and their families is everything they dreamed it would be. It is with great joy that she guides couples through this process.
Praise Choir Director
Dale Wolff has been directing the Praise Singers on a volunteer basis since 1989. His other musical endeavors include singing with the Vocal Arts Ensemble and the "Bald Spots" doo-wop group, and occasionally writing songs. He is a retired Ph.D. psychologist and former Mental Health Director for the County. He and his wife Kathy have three grown sons and several grandkids. His other activities include Rotary, travel, writing, photography, and golf.
Linda feels blessed to be able to worship God through playing the piano at First Pres. During the week, Linda teaches piano lessons. The remainder of her time is dedicated to her church, her family and friends, and her favorite hobbies, gardening and reading.
Pastoral & Program Staff | Support Staff
Dr. Katya Gotsdiner McMahan
Organist and Interim Chancel Choir Director
Katya Gotsdiner-McMahan, born in Russia, holds doctorate degrees in musicology and organ from Moscow Conservatory, and a master’s degree in church music from the University of Kansas. She has performed at concert halls and churches in Russia, Austria, Italy, The Netherlands, and the United States. On the Central Coast of California she performs piano, organ, harpsichord, and celesta with the Lompoc Valley Master Chorale, North County Chorus, Central Coast Children Choir, Symphony of the Vines, Santa Maria Philharmonic, SLO Symphony, SLO Wind Orchestra, and SLO Opera. She joined the First Pres family in 2010 as the organist and is the founder and director of the Organ Concert Series. Outside of music she enjoys spending her time with her dog Teddy at the dog park. For more information visit: http://www.KatyaGotsdiner.com