ELDER NOMINEES 2023
After asking for Elder nominations and having our nominating committee review those names, we have Elder nominees and a nominee for Elder Board Chairman. May 7 is Elder Sunday where we will be asking church members to affirm these nominated elders in our Sunday services.
If you have questions or concerns about any of the Elder nominees, you may email the Elders.
Make sure you get to know our new elder candidates before May 7 by reading a short bio of each of them below. Each Elder who is up for affirmation or reaffirmation was asked to respond to the following four prompts:
- In a few sentences, tell us about your background, faith story and family.
- In what areas of ministry have you been involved here or outside of the church?
- What do you feel you can bring to the Elder Board?
- What excites you about the future of Fullerton Free?
Carl Camp, Elder Board Chairman
I grew up on a farm near Bakersfield and came to Christ through our local church in Shafter, CA, as a freshman in high school. In college at Purdue University, I became involved with The Navigators and their collegiate ministry. Judy and I met in Chicago after graduation from Purdue. We have lived in Chicago, in Colorado Springs and now in Fullerton having moved here in 1985. We have four children: Beth in Gothenburg, NE, with her husband James and four kids; Andrew in Flagstaff, AZ, with his wife Claire and two kids; Deborah in Littleton, CO, with her husband Andrew and two kids; and Anna in Orange, CA.
At church I have been on the leadership and teaching teams in our adult fellowship. I have also served on many church boards and have been on and off the Elder Board for quite a few terms going back to the early 1990s. Outside of church I have served with The Navigators both as a staff member from 2016-present and on the US Navigator Board. I have also been active with Solidarity and their ministry here in Fullerton.
Having served for various terms on the board, I bring a historical perspective. I also bring an organization planning perspective helping us develop an overall direction to the ministry of Fullerton Free. I have a strong desire to see all of us reflect Jesus more in our lives and to see our body reach out to those around us.
God has taken us through some interesting times over quite a few years. I am looking forward to seeing how God will use that in the lives of all of us to cause us to grow and to be more effective in reaching both our local neighborhoods and the world.
Joel Encarnacion, Elder at Large
My relationship with Christ began at a young age and my life at Fullerton Free began even earlier. My wife Erica and I both grew up in this church from childhood as our kids are doing now, so we’ve seen God’s faithfulness to our families and this body of believers over literal generations.
Erica and I were both involved in youth ministry for many years as she led a core group and I led worship in HSM. We’ve also been involved in ministries like college, worship, short-term mission trips to Barbados/China/Ecuador, Love for Life, and MOPS ministries. Outside of Fullerton Free, we are plugged into a small group of former youth ministry families that’s been meeting for over a decade and we’re heavily involved with families in our kids’ school and neighborhood.
I bring decades of experience and relationships in Fullerton Free that have been fostered through God’s faithfulness to this church along with a professional background in Financial Planning & Analysis that looks for strategies to help position the church for long-term ministry. Having been involved with a wide array of ministries over the years, that experience will be helpful in understanding the ministry needs of our community, church family, and staff.
I believe we are in a season of being called to actively participate in the kingdom work that God is doing through Fullerton Free. Our hearts are being tuned to rejoice in Christ’s life-changing power that is seen by walking closely with others through the ups and downs of life and pointing each other to Jesus. I’m excited to see what God’s plans are for this church that we are blessed to call “home” and am looking forward to making Jesus known through Fullerton Free.
Pete Hughes, Elder at Large
My journey with Jesus and my affiliation with Fullerton Free began on the same day in December 1975, on a Sunday evening in the old church building on Malvern. That was my first visit, and this has been my church home ever since. I made my decision to receive Jesus as my Savior in July of 1976. The balcony in the building on Malvern is where I first laid eyes on my wife Sue, in 1978, and we were married in the current chapel in June of 1980. We have two adult children and three grandchildren. And praise God, everyone is local! I have been retired for three years and am currently the JV boys’ basketball coach at Tustin High School.
We have been members of the New Community adult fellowship from its early days in 1980 and have served in leadership there off and on most of that time. I have an occasional teaching role in New Community as well. We have taught children’s Sunday school, and currently work with two year olds once a month. We are also involved in Closer Walk on Wednesday mornings as members of the planning team.
My history with Fullerton Free gives me some perspective regarding where we have been as a congregation that can help inform where we are going. Also, my various points of contact within the congregation and in the various ministries I have been part of helps to make me a conduit for questions and answers regarding the Elder Board.
Regarding the ministries of Fullerton Free, I find myself most excited by the involvement of our youth in the ministries of our church as well as the areas of ministry that we are seeking to expand, such as Special Needs and ministry to our Hispanic neighbors and the revived Men’s Ministry. There are great things happening and more opportunities coming to get excited about and involved in.
Jeff Key, Elder at Large
I grew up in a Christian home. Around the age of six or seven my mother helped me pray to accept Jesus. That was real, but I took it for granted most of my childhood and high school years. It was in graduate school, away from home, that God got my attention and nudged me off the fence. I got involved in Campus Crusade and then a singles group back home after graduation. Eventually this led to my casual friendship with Betty, turning into a romance in that singles group. The rest is history… Being around people who are good for me helped me grow—that’s still the case today. Betty and I have been married for 40 years. Our two daughters Susie and Sally are married with three grandchildren between them. Susie and Steve attend Fullerton Free with their kids Max and Sadie. Sally and Scott live in Long Beach with their daughter Susie.
I currently serve on the music/worship team and on the Elder Board. Betty and I serve as a mentor couple in Love for Life premarital class and we support OC United Thrive dinners for foster system graduates. In the past, I have served as/on Children’s ministries volunteer, adult fellowship president and other leadership, deacon board, trustee board, Elder Board, Next Step building committee, apartment management committee, offering counting team, Fullerton Free liaison with leadership of new church plant and short-term mission trips.
I’m a problem solver and designer, with a creative bent. My passion is to create things that solve meaningful problems. My degree was in engineering. It may be that my roughly 60 years of involvement with our church provides some perspective that I can bring to planning and discussions. Even so, I’m not one to live in the past and I’m excited for the future, despite all the cultural and spiritual challenges lurking out there.
I am excited and relieved to see how the Lord has protected and led us through some rather difficult years. I look around on Sunday mornings and see hundreds of folks coming into the service, dropping off and picking up kids from their classes, or maybe coming out in large numbers for lunch in the tent after church. I’m always happy to see friends, but I am especially pleased to see all the unfamiliar faces; lots of new families getting involved and growing. It is evident that Darin and his fine staff have the ideas and the energy to implement some terrific ministry plans as we move into the future. I’m honored and thankful to perhaps be able to play a small part in all of that.