Rev. Joel E. Smit
Rev. Joel Smit is the Senior Pastor of Smyrna Presbyterian Church. Previously, he served as a Pastor with Midway Presbyterian (Powder Springs, GA) for 8 years as their Pastor of Families & Outreach (2008-2015). Pastor Smit also currently serves as a volunteer police chaplain for the Cobb County Police Department.
Pastor Smit graduated from Simpson University (Redding, CA) in 2002 with a BA in Biblical Studies. He attended Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, receiving his Master of Divinity (MDiv) degree in 2008.
He and his wife Stefanie originate from California and they have four children. They love the parks, restaurants, and the active community of Smyrna, Georgia. Joel loves everything sports-related and is glad to have Smyrna as the new home for the Atlanta Braves. Go Braves!
Rev. Danny Myers
Danny Myers is the Assistant Pastor of Smyrna Presbyterian Church. Before coming to SPC Danny worked in college ministry in Georgia and South Carolina and then as a pastoral intern at First Presbyterian Church of Columbia, SC.
Pastor Myers graduated from Georgia Southern University (Statesboro, GA) in 2009 with a BS in Middle Grades Education. He went on to Erskine Theological Seminary and received his Master of Divinity (MDiv) in 2019.
He and his wife, Meredith have three sons. They love living in Smyrna, coffee, exploring new restaurants, and the Braves.
Alycia Schulz is the Administrative Assistant at Smyrna Presbyterian Church. She comes to us after working in private consulting for the past several years. Early in her career, she traveled extensively in North America and Europe, helping international firms develop and execute marketing, sales, and new business development strategies. She also has experience as an ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher, the room parent for the German track at the Atlanta International School (AIS) in Buckhead, and a community volunteer.
Alycia graduated with a BSBA from Campbell University in Buies Creek, North Carolina. She has one daughter, Nina-Nicole, who will graduate from AIS in May and will attend UGA in the fall. Alycia enjoys languages, literature, music, and nature.
Media & Communications
Claresa Smith is the Media & Communications Coordinator for Smyrna Presbyterian Church. Before taking on this position, she spent a brief time as one of the church’s Interim Administrative Assistants and a social media volunteer.
Claresa graduated from Winston-Salem State University (Winston-Salem, NC) in 2003 with a B.A. in Mass Communications. While there, she worked as the news producer/announcer for the local radio station housed on campus. She later spent time at ClearChannel Radio (Charlotte, NC) as a studio software operator and fill-in traffic reporter. From there, she went on to produce local news for WYFF-TV (Greenville, SC) for nearly a decade. Meanwhile, she also wrote about faith and daily living in various Christian women's blogs and online publications.
Claresa and her husband, Devin, have two children. Both enjoy singing in the church choir, learning ballroom dance, and watching live music and sports.
James Ogburn (Jim) was raised in the Druid Hills neighborhood of Atlanta. He attended Emory University where he studied vocal performance. Early in his singing career, he toured, performing at small opera houses throughout Europe. He married dramatic soprano and Marietta native Lisa Burnette in 1978. They have three children - William, Matthew, and Stuart. He has been the choirmaster at Smyrna Presbyterian since October 1989. In the choir's repertoire is Handel's Messiah, Mendelssohn's Elijah, Dubois' Seven Last Words of Christ, Saint Saens Christmas Oratorio, Honegger's King David, as well as many others. Jim's philosophy of church music is that all glory is given to God and we are only the vessel presenting beautiful music to His Glory! Deo Soli Gloria!
Accompanist / Organist
A native of Raleigh, North Carolina, Caleb Houck began playing piano in church at the age of eight. Caleb holds graduate degrees from the University of South Carolina. An active recitalist, he has appeared recently in performances at Steinway Piano Galleries Atlanta, National Center for Civil and Human Rights, City Winery Atlanta, Agnes Scott College Community Orchestra, Kennesaw State University, Georgia State University, Emory University, Brevard Music Center, Interlochen Center for the Arts, Burgos International Music Festival (Spain), and Wiener Musikseminar (Austria). Caleb enjoys The New Yorker, fitness, foreign languages, and cats.
Joy Douglas serves as Nursery Coordinator for our Nursery Ministry. Born in North Carolina, she grew up in several states and spent a few of her teen years in Okinawa, Japan. She married her husband, Dervon, in Cleveland OH and have two grown sons, David and Shoan. Joy was employed for 25 years at a welding firm, the last several as an office manager and team leader. In Cleveland, she taught Sunday School and served at an urban children's outreach center. When the family moved to Atlanta, she continued to participate in children's and adult ministry. Now retired, she works part-time as our Nursery Coordinator, caring and ministering to all the little children of our church. Joy enjoys water aerobics and family gatherings.
Robert "Robbie" Hines is a native of Smyrna and joined Smyrna Presbyterian Church at the age of 12. He attended Fitzhugh Lee, Nash, and Campbell High Schools and graduated with a BS in Computer Science and minor in Law Enforcement. He married Barbara Lindsay from Hendersonville, NC in 1990 and they have two daughters, Lindsay-Kate & Tori. Rob's employment consisted of a Programmer/Analyst for 13 years and an Oracle DBA Manager for 15 years. He has served as both a Deacon and Elder at SPC. He enjoys gardening, Lake Country, hunting, fishing, and God's creation.