Rev. Darin Arntson
Rev. Darin Arntson is a life-long United Methodist. With a second-career pastor for a mother, Darin established roots in the traditions, theology, and community of the church at an early age. Now, as an elder in full-connection herself, she hopes to continue to cultivate opportunities for this rich formation for others of all ages, stages of development, identities, and perspectives, both within and beyond the church.
Darin grew up in San Diego County, which is where she feels most at home, but she also intentionally sought out opportunities to live and study in other parts of the country as well. A combined five years in Dallas, New York City, and Atlanta proved to be deeply influential in broadening her awareness of other racial, cultural, and theological perspectives, as well as the diverse ministries (and potluck dishes) experienced within United Methodism across the nation.
In seminary at Candler School of Theology – Emory University, Darin deepened her passions for designing and leading formative worship services, and building up the next generation of pastoral leaders. Since her commissioning in 2014, she has lived into these callings by serving on the Annual Conference Worship Committee, the Board of Ordained Ministry, and appointed most recently as the Associate Director of Leadership of the Cal-Pac Conference. She also served as the Associate Pastor of San Dieguito UMC in Encinitas from 2014 to 2017. She looks forward to continuing her work as the Conference’s Vocational Discernment Coordinator, assisting young people in their discernment of gifts and call for pastoral and lay ministry.
Outside of work, Darin hangs out at dog parks with her Aussiedoodle Monroe, has recently taken up CrossFit, and always looks forward to the next hiking or camping adventure. She also enjoys making music (often poorly), building things in her dad’s garage, sporting activities of all varieties, and spending quality time with’ beloved friends and family.
Rev. Jeri Newell-Davis
Jeri Newell-Davis is a native So. Californian who moved to San Diego in 1967. She graduated from Madison High School in 1975 and started working for Time Warner Cable in 1983. She began her education towards ministry in 1994, graduating from San Diego Christian College in June, 2004 and entered Fuller Theological Seminary, in Pasadena in July 2004. Jeri graduated with her M-Div from Fuller in May, 2011.
During her educational years, Jeri continued working at Time Warner Cable and transitioned to Office Manager at tw telecom. Jeri left her 29-year career at tw telecom when she was appointed Associate Minister to St. Mark’s in August, 2012.
Jeri has one son, Adam, who lives in a suburb outside Dallas, Texas.
Director of Young People Ministries
Amanda grew up in El Cajon and started attending Foothills UMC in La Mesa when she was 14. As a teenager she got involved in the youth group, bible study and small groups, helped with Sunday School and VBS, and became a camp counselor for elementary aged youth. She moved away to college in Los Angeles to major in Math, but ended up interning at the church on her summers back home and visiting the youth group whenever she was in town. When Amanda moved back to San Diego in 2014 she started working at Camp Cedar Glen helping plan, organize, and run the three weeks of summer camp for our UMC children and youth. In 2016 she stepped down from camp to join a tech company in Old Town, but she continued to volunteer her time at 1-2 weeks of camp each summer (still organizing and leading!) and spending a ton of time with the youth back at Foothills. After coming to terms with her call to work in ministry she became the Director of Young People MInistries at St Mark’s UMC. Amanda lives in Clairemont with her husband and their two very spoiled cats. She loves reading (send over some book recommendations anytime!), being outdoors, and playing super nerdy board games.
Minister of Visitation
I have been attending St. Mark’s for about 35 years and was married in the church as well. Growing up in a small town in Wisconsin, my family was very involved in the church. My Grandfather was a Lay Minister and my Mother, and her twin sister taught Sunday school. I was participated in MYF, the choir and began my service there as a Sunday School Teacher. After leaving Wisconsin to get out of the harsh winters, I found St. Mark’s while looking for a church in my community.
My volunteer work at St. Mark’s began in 2009 when I became a member of Care Corp. That led me to my current profession as a Professional Fiduciary and Eldercare Advocate. I have advised and assisted several parishioners and their families over the past 10 years. I believe my strength lies in my ability to recognize and identify the needs of my clients and provide direction with compassion, empathy, kindness and love.
I am honored to be on the St. Mark’s team and excited about the gifts and knowledge I can provide to the congregation of the church. Please feel free to reach out to me with questions, concerns and guidance.
Michelle Solomon Gertes
Michelle is the daughter of a Navy Veteran and has lived in San Diego most of her life. She received her BS in Business Administration in 2010 and pursued a career at Revlon where she was the Education Supervisor for 8 years.
After being in the beauty industry for many years Michelle decided to change careers after her position relocated to Florida. She has always wanted to work with children but wanted to be in a position where she could utilize her project managment and adminstrative expertise. Being the Church Adminstrator at St. Mark’s she is able to use those skills in a position she feels very passionate about. Although, Michelle will not be working directly with children she is excited that she will be able to see the kids at the nursery school every day.
Michelle has a son, Nathaniel who is 8, a daughter, Livvy, who is 4 and a Belgian Malinois, Baxter, who is 8 months.
In her spare time Michelle enjoys gardening and reading. She also enjoys binge watching shows when she has some extra free time.
She is very excited to be a part of the St. Mark’s UMC team.
Anita Hill, PhD
St. Mark's Nursery School Director
Director, Glory Ringers