Meet Pastor Sharon


Pastor Sharon Gearing grew up in Greensburg, P.A.  She has a Bachelor of Science in Education from the University of Oklahoma and a Master Of Divinity from Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary. Pastor Sharon is a fourth generation pastor and a second generation Presbyterian pastor.

Pastor Sharon has been in ministry for 26 years which has included serving as a hospital chaplain in Florida.  She was a pastor of the Presbyterian Church in Galeton, Pennsylvania for 10 years.  Pastor Sharon then went on to pastor at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Arlington, Texas for 11 years. She has been our Pastor since 2017 and we could not be more thrilled to have her shepherding our flock.

After high school she traveled the country with a Christian repertory theater company performing at churches, schools, and military bases.  She is the mother of three grown sons who live in Texas and Oklahoma .  Sharon is now living in South Charleston with her beautiful black dog Picasso, her faithful companion.

Becky Smith began working for First Presby of South Charleston in 1991. She is who keeps the wheels going around in our church.  Becky is from St. Albans and now lives in South Charleston with her husband Dave. Her son David lives with his daughters Emily and Natalie. Her daughter Jan lives with her husband Brian, with daughters Ellie and Carly. They all live in South Charleston.  Becky graduated from St. Albans High school and WVSU. She enjoys reading, cooking,walking, and spending time with her family.
Director of Informational Services
Becky Smith

30 Years of Service

 March 31st 2021

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Director of Chancel Choir

    Dr.  Mark Hornbaker

Mark is a Charleston singer who has had an extensive career performing throughout the U.S. and Europe. Recent performances abroad include solo concerts in France, Germany and Croatia. Mark has sung with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Charleston Light Opera Guild, West Virginia Youth Orchestra, and Appalachian Children’s Chorus. As a professor, Mark taught 20+ years at universities in Iowa, Texas, Oklahoma, and most recently at the University of Charleston where he was the head of the Department of Music. His doctorate and Masters are from the University of Iowa. Mark completed his B.M in Music Education at Arizona State University and also studied in Zagreb, Croatia (Academy of Music) and Salzburg, Austria (Mozarteum). As a scholar, he had two Fulbright Scholarships and conducted research in Croatia where he focused on obscure nineteenth-century composers of art songs, opera, and choral music. This resulted in subsequent publications. In Charleston, West Virginia, Mark founded his Academy of Music where he now focuses his energy working with singers at all levels. This work allows him to promote healthy singing! Mark believes that every person can sing. Taking private singing lessons is expensive, so he discovered that people of all ages learn many of the basic techniques of singing and become confident by taking voice classes. Small groups of people meet weekly (kids, teens, and adults) to explore their dream and talent. By performing as a soloist each week, his students become proficient. Every month there are recitals of singers, pianists, and guitarists who perform at the beautiful Academy Hall. Dr. Hornbaker is known in Charleston as a prominent church musician. He is Master of Music at First Presbyterian Church of South Charleston since 2008 where he supervises all of the music programs: Chancel Choir conductor, Presby Pealers (handbell), and Youth. He is the organist and accompanies the choir
Beverly is from Kanawha County.  Beverly is a mother of a son and daughter.  She has 4 grandchildren  . She started her employment with us on June of 2020.  She does a fantastic job making our church sparkle!
Beverly Hughes
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