At Willowbrook Church in Sun City, Arizona we feel blessed to have a dedicated and talented staff to help each of us better understand the Word of God!

Gary Kennedy

Senior Pastor
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Gary KAs Senior Pastor, Gary oversees the daily operations of Willowbrook, leads in worship and supports the staff in their varied ministries. He is a graduate of U.Cal. Fresno and received a Masters of Divinity degree from The School of Theology at Claremont in CA. Prior to his appointment to Willowbook, Gary served eight years as Central West District Superintendent and was Dean of the Cabinet for the last four years.

Ruth Blum

Associate Pastor
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Ruth’s primary responsibility is in Membership & Evangelism, doing visitation and conducting the new member classes.

Prior to retiring in 2016, Ruth served as Director of Children & Family Ministries at Dove of the Desert UMC in Glendale, AZ.

Laurie Lineberry

Director of Laity
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Laurie Lineberry joined the Willowbrook lay staff as Director of Laity in April 2020. Born into the Methodist church in Anchorage, Alaska she has been active in the church ever since. She served as District Lay Leader under Pastor Gary and currently serves as Conference Lay Leader.

Bev Amperse

Business manager
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As Business Manager, Bev’s responsibilities include the functions of Financial Secretary and Office Manager. She oversees the day to day running of the office and the recording of all giving to the church. She is a member of the Professional Association of United Methodist Church Secretaries and has completed Certification and Advanced Certification in this organization.

Betty Shepherd

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Betty comes to Willowbrook with a history of church office work under her belt. Her duties at Willowbrook include Good News Editor, Membership Secretary, bulletin preparation, and communications to the public.

Cynthia Reid



Cynthia is a CPA and is responsible for maintaining the financial records of the church and of the church foundation. This includes the all important task of paying the bills.

Robb Butler

Director of Music
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robbDr. Robb Butler is our Music Director, whose primary responsibility is leading our 50-voice choir. Dr. Butler is also a composer and has a trained operatic voice.

Robb, as he prefers to be called, has a wealth of knowledge and experience in choral music. He holds a Master’s degree in Choral Sacred Music from Duquesne University and a Doctorate in Choral Conducting from Arizona State University.

Carol Virolainen

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Carol began playing piano at an early age and played organ for her church while a teen. She has experience in all forms of music from traditional to contemporary. Carol accompanies our choir, plays piano and organ for our traditional worship and electronic keyboard for our Mosaic service. She also teaches music at a Phoenix elementary school and offers lessons on piano and guitar.