Ministry Staff


Rev. Dan Boyd, Senior Pastor 

Contact Rev. Boyd

I was appointed to FUMC-Carlsbad in 2009, after previously serving churches in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and most recently Lakeridge United Methodist Church in Lubbock, TX.  A native of Lubbock along with my wife, Renee, we and our children, David and Taryn, have settled into life in eastern New Mexico quite easily.  Click here for a full bio on myself and an introduction to my family.



Ara Fletcher, 
Director of Children's Christian Ministry and Nursery 
Contact Ara

Ara Fletcher is our Director of our Children’s Christian Ministry Preschool (CCM) & our leads our Nursery Ministry. She is a native to Fredericksburg, Texas and comes to us with 8+ years experience as a Texas state certified teacher. She graduated from Texas Tech University in 2009 with her Bachelor’s Degree in Multidisciplinary Studies with an emphasis in Early Education. While in attendance there, she met her husband, “Carlsbadian” Jake Fletcher. After graduation, they moved to Midland, Texas to pursue their careers. Midland was their home for 4 years before moving back to Carlsbad, NM. Ara was a teacher at CCM for one year before accepting the position as “Director” of this wonderful program.


Ara and her husband have 2 sons Brogan and Corbett, so she has a mother’s heart and perspective as she leads our ministry.

Contact Braden

I believe that evangelism, without discipleship, is spiritual abandonment. Christ did not call us to "Go make members" or "Go make converts" , but instead He commanded that we "Go make disciples". I have been in ministry the better part of 10 years, and have found that most of the issues we face in the western church, can be solved by taking this command seriously. God never called us to feel good about warming a pew, and giving a few. Instead, He
calls us to a life of adventure, struggle, and above all, bringing massive glory to His name! We need to use every tool at our disposal, to wake each member of the body of Christ from apathy,and equip them to fulfill the purpose they have been created for. "When Christ calls a man, He bids him come and die."  
                                                          Dietrich Bonhoeffer  
 Contact Caleb                                                                                                                                                                                            

                                                              I married my best friend , Hayden, in November of 2016; we share a                        passion for missions, and she is uniquely gifted in the areas of counseling, and social work. I am a native      of Artesia, NM, and she is originally from the Tulsa, OK area. We are excited to join the work the Sprit of God is beginning here in Carlsbad!

My name is Brandy Yell. My husband, Mark and I have four children; our oldest daughter, Kelby lives in Texas, Blake is 17, Allie is 10 and Ethan is 7. All three are homeschooled and we couldn't love it more! Our family relocated to Carlsbad from San Angelo Texas 3 years ago. It had been a struggle to make Carlsbad home and THEN we were lead to attend FUMC! What a blessing the church and congregation have been! 

It is a tremendous privilege to love, care for and help teach your children during their journey as the come to know and follow our Savior! I am excited to help lead our children as they grow with knowledge that happens when they are immersed in God's truth

Worship and Music Staff


Don Gunderson, Director of Traditional Worship and Music Ministries

Contact Don

I accepted Jesus as my Lord in 1972. In 1975, I received an undeniable, yet unanswered “call” to full time music ministry.  1976 marked the beginning of a career in the lumber business, eventually becoming part-owner of a successful lumber wholesale firm in Seattle.  In 1984 I sold the business and moved into my call to full-time ministry in music, and have never looked back.  In September of 2012, I received another call to move from my Portland, Oregon home to serve as Traditional Worship Director at FUMC.  People have asked me, “Why Carlsbad?”  God directed me here.  It’s surely different than Oregon, but I love it here.  It is fast becoming my second home.

My wife, Rhonda, and I have seven children and thirteen grandchildren between us.  Rhonda is in Portland operating the salon and day spa we own there while we look forward to the day when we’ll return to “one roof”, as the Lord directs our path.  My youngest daughter Reanna lives here, attends NMSU Carlsbad and serves on the FUMC Worship Team.  
I spend my free time working, catching a movie now and then, and always look forward to the times I can find a reason to eat at Adobe Rose in Artesia, undoubtedly the best cuisine in New Mexico.  I rarely see a movie more than once; however after  inviting friends to see a favorite of mine, I ended up seeing McFarland, USA FIVE TIMES.  An awesome flick!


Cherry Tyree, Organist and Accompanist

Music has been a gift from God starting with my first piano lessons in the First Grade.  Next came the organ lessons when my feet could reach the pedals.  There was so much music in my life the natural progression began from playing in church on the organ when I was in the Third Grade to High School musicals, a high school organist for a church in need, to teaching music.

 In 1986, my family, Phil, Phillip Jr., Tiffany, and I, moved to Carlsbad, NM.  After getting settled and attending FUMC for a while, I felt the urge to volunteer as a substitute organist when needed.  Soon I became a part time staff member as organist.  As of April 1, 2015, I have been staff organist for FUMC for 26 years!  It has been my calling by God, a joy, and dedication. 

 During the week when I am practicing the organ alone in the Sanctuary, I experience the overwhelming feeling of worshipping as the Holy Spirit envelopes me.  My heart and spirit swell with love for God, for the gift He has given me, and for the blessings that have come with that gift of music.
Administrative and Support Staff 


Judi Waters, Office Manager

Contact Judi

I came to work as Church Secretary in May of 1979 when the new Pastor, Charles Crutchfield, found himself without front office personnel. I had worked as a Legal Secretary previous to moving to Carlsbad but had decided to be a stay-at-home mom for my two sons, John and James. I agreed to come fill the position until the Pastor found a permanent replacement—I am still waiting for that replacement nearly 40 years later!  Though I had not intended to go to work, to this day, I thank the Lord for the opportunity and love my mission to make all who enter the church feel welcome.

I am married to my loving husband, Jim, who works for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant.  Our son John lives in Carlsbad and is the Executive Director of the Department of Development.  He and his wife have given us four beautiful grandchildren.  Our son James currently lives in the Austin, Texas area and is an orthodontist.  He is also married and has also given us four grandchildren.


Cesilia Medrano, Financial Secretary 

Contact Cesilia

I came to First United Methodist Church in 2010 after working for Carlsbad Municipal Schools for 28 years in the administration business office.  At the time, I was not looking for employment but through the encouragement of a First United Methodist Church member, I decided to apply.  Pastor Dan Boyd hired me and the staff and church members have made me feel very welcome.  They have nicknamed me “Angel Princess”, or “AP” for short, because they say I am so kind-hearted.

Rick Jack, Custodial and Maintenance Services

I hail from Youngstown, OH (or, as it's also known, little Chicago) and was a union laborer there for 23 years, learning all of the construction trades in the process.  After 4 additional years working for a flood and fire restoration company, I moved to Carlsbad in 2012 to help take care of my best friend's ailing mother.  In 2014, feeling the need to "get back to work" using my hands and skills, I applied for and was hired as the Custodian for FUMC-Carlsbad.  It has been an incredible blessing to have such a good job, letting me use my skills for God and working with all of these good people.

Contact Braden