Rev. Dr. Glen Bell

Pastor / Head of Staff


W. Glen Bell—originally from Charlotte, but raised in Roanoke Rapids, N.C.—holds a Bachelor of Arts with honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in Virginia, and a Doctor of Ministry from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago.


Glen is married to Anne, who is a family practice nurse. Together they have four young adult children: Laurel, Meredith, Matt and Rachel.


Rev. Margaret LaMotte Torrence

Interim Associate Pastor


Most of my childhood was spent in Sarasota, living just across the street from the First Presbyterian Church. Who would have thought I would get to “come home” again and share a season of ministry with the community that sheltered, shaped, and sent me? I am delighted to share these transitional days with you!

Margaret is a graduate of Davidson College and Princeton Theological Seminary. She has served churches in a variety of capacities in New Jersey and North Carolina, most recently as Interim Pastor/Head of Staff at Black Mountain Presbyterian Church. When this Sarasota-season draws to a close, she and Lee will return to the mountains of Western North Carolina, where they share a home with Margaret’s parents, and relish occasional visits from Nate (a graduate student at Boston College), and Hanna (a graduate student at the University of Chicago).


Steven Phillips

Director of Music Ministries
and Congregational Care



The music search committee and the associate pastor nominating committee are excited to announce the newest member of our church staff, Steven R. Phillips. He will join our church family as the director of music ministries and congregational care.


Steven holds a bachelor of music degree in organ performance, a master of music degree in choral conducting and has over 30 years experience as a church musician in both traditional and contemporary styles of worship. Additionally, he is near completion of a master of arts in religion. Three-quarters of Steven’s time will be spent as director of music ministries and one-quarter of his time he will serve as director of congregational care. Sensing the guidance and call of the Holy Spirit, with great enthusiasm Steven looks forward to this opportunity to expand his ministry within the church.

Steven and his wife, Donna, are excited to join the FPC family. Steven is coming to us from Tallahassee with over 30 years experience as a director of worship and music in Presbyterian churches. Steven and Donna have two grown daughters.



  Click here - Associate Pastor for Family Ministry - Ministry Information Form
  Click here for the FPC Organizational Chart (updated 2015).




Rev. Dr. Glen Bell


Class of 2016
Scott Carter
Emilie Kimbrough
Marvin Miller
Carol Papa
Jay Swick
Vicki Wacksman


Class of 2017
Elaine Barnett
Jane Barr
Victor Garraus
Jane Nicholl

John Schaub


Class of 2018

Micheal Brown

Kyle Hubert
Jean Luker

Larry Schaper

Kay Steinman




The Session is the church governing body made up of elders, church members elected by the congregation for three-year terms to guide and direct the ministry of the church.


Elders chair various committees and ministry teams in which any member may participate. Meetings for all committees and ministry teams are held on the second Tuesday of the month from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. They include:


Business Affairs

  †  Communications and

      Long-range Planning

  †  Finance

  †  Property

  †  Stewardship


Congregational Nominating

Education & Formation
  †  Adult Education
  †  Children's Ministry

  †  College Ministry

  †  Spiritual Formation

  †  Youth Ministry



 †  Fellowship

 †  Membership Development


Mission & Ministry

  †  Hispanic Ministry

  †  Missions

  †  Peace & Justice




Worship & Music




The Board of Deacons is a group of church members elected by the congregation and called to serve as the primary assistants to the staff for pastoral care. Deacons serve for three-year terms; five are elected each year.


Deacons provide home communion, transport members who need a ride to church, deliver flowers, create and deliver "We Care" posters, send cards for special occasions, provide assistance for memorial services, and comfort families and members.


Class of 2016
Daryl Alsum
Barbara Chase
Bette Lou Cookson
Jon Raynor


Class of 2017
Bob Friday
Tish Goodale
Linda Hildebrandt
Raynette Lignos


Class of 2018
George Buermann
Mary Groninger
Thom Olshewsky
Bev Wright

Faith Community Nurses

The Board of Deacons supports the work of our Faith Community Nurses, professional Registered Nurses with additional training in holistic ministry.


Ellen Forbes and Cheryl Track started health ministries at First Presbyterian in 2007, with the mission to provide the church and community with education that focuses on health promotion and wellness as well as spiritual care and support in time of illness and grief.

Ellen Forbes, RN

Faith Community Nurse


Ellen Forbes ( RN, CNN, FCN) has been a professional RN for over 30 years, practicing for most of that time in the specialty of nephrology, and specifically in the area of renal failure. She has been employed in the chronic and acute dialysis setting, dealing with people facing chronic illness, limited life-styles and end of life decisions. She is an ordained elder in the Presbyterian Church, has served two terms at FPC: the Adult Education Committee and the Committee on Spiritual Formation Ministry. Ellen is currently serving in the Medical Reserve Corps of Sarasota County. Having completed the Certificate in Spiritual Formation of Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia, Ellen is presently acting as Labyrinth Facilitator at FPC.

Cheryl Track RN

Faith Community Nurse


Cheryl Track (RN, FCN) has been an ICU nurse since 1988. Leaving the hospital setting in 2013, she joined Right at Home, private duty home care, as a nurse care manager. Cheryl seeks to be a strong influence with the congregation in all areas of church life including worship, education, support networks and recreation. She works closely with the pastors, deacons and the Health and Wholeness Ministry Team to help parishioners who are in need of meals, visitation, respite care, transportation and community resources. You can reach Cheryl at 941-320-3828 or email her at 4tracks@comcast.net.