Dr. Jimmy Tanner
Pastor Jimmy A. Tanner serves as senior pastor of the First Baptist Church of Murphy, NC from: January 1, 2014 until present. He is married to Karen M. Tanner (February 4, 1984 36yr.) and they have 2 children and 4 grandchildren. Daughter: Leslee Duncan and spouse, Paul Robert (Bobby) Duncan, Children: Bailee and Lilly of Wake Forest, NC). Son: Micah and spouse, Asia Tanner, Children: Braden and Kinslee of Blairsville, GA).
Jimmy attended Shorter College, Liberty University and graduated from Covington Theological Seminary with a Doctor of Ministry degree and a Master of Theology degree. Jimmy was License to Preach Gospel (1981-1985) Pennville First Baptist Church, Summerville GA, Ordained December 29, 1991 at Midway Baptist Church in Summerville GA.
Jimmy has served on staff of the local church from the age of 16 years old until the present. Jimmy has served as a (Dean of Off Campus College Program and Professor), he has also served as Moderator of many Associations and held State Convention positions. Jimmy is known as being a true pastor to his flock and not just a preacher/teacher. Pastor Tanner can be heard on local radio and television stations and also see him serving on local non-profit community boards building relationships for a greater kingdom.
Carol has been in music ministry for over thirty years. Her passion and desire is to worship and glorify God through His wonderful gift of music and lead others to do the same and in doing so draw closer to Him.
She was born in Hahira in south Georgia. She grew up in several towns throughout Georgia moving with her family as her father was led by God to pastor at several different Baptist churches throughout the state along with her mother who served as a “foreign missionary” to Georgia from Texas as a nurse and nurse instructor. Watching her parents as a young child she knew she wanted to be a Christian. God opened her 8 year old eyes and heart to understand what that meant and she accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior during revival services late one summer.
As a child she took piano lessons and began playing the flute in band. As a teenager she felt God leading her to serve Him through music. She graduated from the University of Georgia in 1983 with a Bachelor in Music and from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1987 with a Masters in Music. She served full time in music and youth ministry in Andrews for six years. She has served at Murphy First Baptist Church part time since 1994. She has also taught music in the Cherokee County School System since 2000, teaching fourteen years at Ranger and Martins Creek elementary middle schools and presently at Murphy and Peachtree elementary schools.
She and her husband Terry love to ride and camp in the mountains, sit on their front porch and spend time with their growing family. They have three grown sons and five grandchildren. Daniel and his wife, Brooke live in Manchester Tennessee with their children Remi and Hyatt. Phillip and his wife, Chelsea live in Marble with their children Huntleigh, Baylor and Rhett. Levi, their youngest son lives with them in Marble.
Brenda has been in the music ministry for over 40 years. She has a desire to serve and glorify God through the gift of music.
She was born and raised in Murphy, NC and has always been involved with Murphy First Baptist Church. As an 11 year old, she accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior during spring revival service. As a child, she took piano lessons and began playing for the church at age 14. She was very involved in all aspects of the church from a young age.
At 15 years old, she began taking organ lessons and playing the organ in church. At 18 years old, she felt God leading her to serve Him through music ministry. She graduated from Young Harris College in 1981 and continued to minister through music. She has taught many students in piano and organ throughout the years and several students minister by playing at other churches. She graduated from Western Carolina University with a BS. Ed in elementary education/music and graduated from Piedmont College with her masters degree.
She has also taught in the Cherokee County School System
since 1993, teaching music and elementary education. She is presently teaching at Murphy Elementary School.
She is married to Tim Meador and they have one son and two daughters and two grandchildren.
Rev. Cory West
Cory West is a 26 year old youth pastor from Bremen, GA. He attended First Baptist Church of Bremen for most of his life and was saved when he was 18. In his Senior year of high school, God called Cory to vocational ministry. Since then, he has had the opportunity to serve as an intern with the youth group at First Baptist Bremen and as the Interim Youth Pastor at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church in Eillijay, GA.
Cory is a graduate of Truett-McConnell University where he received a bachelors degree in business and missions. He married Leighton West (née Eldridge) on December 21, 2015. Cory and Leighton moved to West Virginia where he served as the Youth and Children’s Pastor at Kingwood Southern Baptist Church for one year. He enjoys outdoor activities as well as spending time with his wife and their two dogs.
Currently, Cory is working as our youth pastor at First Baptist Church of Murphy. He started working with our youth in July of 2017. Cory desires to assist young people to grow in their personal relationship with Jesus Christ through studying Scripture and applying it to their daily lives.
My name is Jamie Deren and I am the Children’s Director for babies to 5th grade at First Baptist Church of Murphy, NC. I married my husband Chris, who is from Livonia, Michigan, in March of 1999. We have since been blessed with 2 daughters Savannah and Madison. After getting married my husband and I lived in Livonia, Michigan and then relocated to Asheville NC before moving back to Murphy in January of 2001. I grew up just outside of Murphy in a small community called Culberson where we reside now.
I graduated from Western Carolina University in 1998 with a Bachelor's Degree in Business. Along with being the Children’s Director, I am employed full time with Shore’s Construction, Inc, a NC General Contractor, where I have worked in HR and Administration since September of 2004.
Our path to FBCM began in July of 2010. My husband and I had been searching for a church home to raise our young daughters (ages 1 and 4 at the time) and knew right away we wanted to become a part of this church. We both became Christians at a young age and wanted our children to have that same experience we had been blessed with in our home churches. My path to becoming the Children’s Director started as a volunteer helping and teaching when my children were just beginning classes and becoming more involved in church. As I took on more responsibilities I was then asked to join the staff and was hired in the fall of 2015 to become the Director. The Children’s Department was in need of organization and management for events and planning. We were managing with volunteers but needed a Director to lead. I was brought on staff to organize all events, classes, volunteers and budgets for the department. Since that time we have built an awesome children’s and volunteer group. I enjoy working with the children and teaching them about God’s everlasting love.
My family and I love to travel and enjoy spending time outdoors. I have been blessed to see both of my daughters saved and baptized at our church and watch each of us grown in our Christian journey. I hope you will join us and experience the love we have been blessed with at FBCM.
Verna joined the church staff in 2017, relocating here full time with her husband Dale of 24 years, from Naples, Florida. They have called Murphy their part time home for the past 18 years. She enjoys being able to help our church family and brings with her experience in the administrative side of business. Verna is involved with children's ministry and missions at her church in Blue Ridge, GA. Her blessing and passion in life are her 3 grandchildren and she enjoys the outdoors (either walking or swimming at Cherokee Lake), just spending time with God in His creation.
Born in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Moved to Fairhaven, Massachusetts at the age of 12. Graduated from Lowell State College in Lowell, Massachusetts. Married Rick Toews in April 1980. We lived in Lakeville, Massachusetts until 2012 when we moved to Murphy, North Carolina. Started as part-time secretary in January 2018.