Meet Some of our Church Staff
Ken Olin, Pastor
Pastor Ken was born in Illinois farm country and enjoyed growing up working with his father on the farm. After graduating from a local community college with an associates degree in mechanical design, he worked for several years in contract engineering. During this time he became friends with a fellow contractor who was also a Christian. This friendship and their discussions of spiritual matters challenged and deepened Ken’s spiritual experience and he began to feel a call to serve God more fully in some way. Fast forward several years. Ken who was now working in engineering for a agricultural equipment company and still feeling that call, made the decision to attend seminary and pursue full-time pastoral ministry. He began pastoral ministry in Texas in the Austin area. He moved to St. Louis in August of 2013 and pastors the St. Louis West County and St. Louis Southside churches. He and his wife, Leslie have 3 children, twin sons, Niles and Nathan, and a daughter, Erin, who are studying at Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska. One of Pastor Ken’s passions is to encourage church members to recognize God’s call on their lives and become involved in some form of ministry and experience the joy of sharing Jesus with others.
Jay Lawrence, Head Deacon
I was born and raised in Portland, Oregon, graduated from Oregon State University with an Engineering degree, and moved to Idaho. I worked for 17 years(as a licensed Professional Engineer) as a civilian for the Nuclear Navy, responsible for primary power plant. I was baptized into the Seventh-day Adventist Church in 1996 after attending a series of meetings held over several years by Doug Batchelor, Dwight Nelson, and Kenneth Cox. After being baptized, my local Pastor told me that I needed to join Adventist Contact in order to meet an Adventist woman who shared my new faith. Two years later I was matched with Rebecca, who had just moved to St. Louis. If you want to hear the rest of the story and watch the wedding video, you are welcome to come to our home, where we will strap you into the “wedding appreciation chair,” where you can hear the whole story and enjoy the multimedia experience of the year 2000 wedding and our 2004 interview on 3ABN. You will experience the video, the pictures, the soundtrack, and you can see wedding favors. Sorry – the wedding cake is no longer available for tasting. (Jay has a great sense of humor, as those around him for just a few minutes quickly ascertain.) Since moving to St. Louis, I have worked at AmerenUE, supporting software applications and writing computer programs that support transmission revenues. Before coming to West County, I was Head Deacon at St. Louis Central Church. I have a passion for helping people with home projects, especially helping them relocate (preferably TO St. Louis). I believe that God has provided our church with every resource to support our church family, and if you don’t need the physical abilities of one of the deacons, often we can provide advice and tools for your needs. I hope that by helping others within our church, we will build a stronger church family.
Rebecca Knoll Lawrence, Head Deaconess
I am an Employee Benefits Attorney and worked in Virginia and in Nashville, TN before I was recruited by my company and moved to St. Louis in 1998. To balance out the heavy analytical nature of my profession, I enjoy a number of artistic outlets – photography, playing my cello, interior decorating, painting, and sewing. Besides my decision to follow Jesus, the most monumental decision of my life was the choice of a spouse. God guided in every aspect of that choice, and He has given me a passion to reach out to young women (through mentorship or through a classroom setting) and share decision-making skills, courtship principles, and practical advice about choosing a spouse. My goal is to help young women make wise marriage choices, since that decision can compromise or enhance a relationship with Jesus and lead to a lifetime of disappointment and strife or an eternity full of joy and gratitude. I am the delighted wife of the most wonderful man in the whole world, and we are blessed to have two precious children whom we want to take to Heaven with us.
John Cardwell, Treasurer
Jeanette Cowin, Clerk
Phil Thompson, Web Administrator