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e-Review Florida United Methodist News Service


An e-Review News Item | April 1, 2009 {0994}

NOTE: Headshots of Jim Boesch and the Rev. David McEntire are available at

• Florida United Methodist named men’s ministry specialist
• Local pastor receives award for disaster response work
• Florida Conference pastor joins college board

Florida United Methodist named men’s ministry specialist

By Rich Peck**

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Jim Boesch, a member at First United Methodist Church of Oviedo, Fla., has been named one of seven national men’s ministry specialists.

Jim Boesch

After completing training sessions with Orlando-based Man in the Mirror, courses in United Methodist polity and history, safe sanctuary training, and hands-on experience in men’s ministry in a local church, Boesch was certified to assist Florida Conference congregations in the difficult work of reaching men.
Boesch, the director of a previous church-wide “40 Days of Purpose” campaign at First United Methodist Church in Oviedo, was certified in absentia during a March 5-8 meeting of the National Association of Conference Presidents in Nashville. He will also be recognized during the 10th National Gathering of United Methodist Men July 10-12 in Nashville where there will be training sessions for other men interested in becoming men’s ministry specialists.
Boesch has taught adult education classes for five years at the Oviedo church and has helped train other church members to lead and facilitate Bible studies or Sunday school classes.
The active layman said he became a men’s ministry specialist following the discovery that only 31 percent of adult worshipers in his church are men and only approximately 50 men of the 1,700-member congregation are active participating members of the church’s United Methodist Men’s group.
A national learning manager for the Scotts Miracle-Gro Company, Boesch helped the Commission on United Methodist Men place courses on United Methodist history and doctrine on the Internet so others training to become men’s ministry specialists would be able to take the course online.
The Rev. David Adams, top staff executive of the Commission on United Methodist Men, said the creation of men’s ministry specialists is a response to the shortage of qualified leadership in men’s ministry and the leadership emphasis of the church’s four areas of focus. The possibilities for the denomination are diminished by the spiritual condition of men, he said.
The specialists will motivate, inspire and serve as “coaches for the conference and district to connect with local churches and connect to the commission,” Adams said.
“The program motivates leaders through vision, inspiration, cooperation and encouragement,” he added. “This is about men helping men know Christ so that others can find Christ.”
Boesch was approved for the position by a review panel chaired by Dan Ramsey of Houston, Texas. Panel members include the Rev. David Adams, general secretary of the General Commission on United Methodist Men; John Dowell, president of the National Association of Conference Presidents and a Florida Conference United Methodist, and Dr. Zawdie Abiade, a staff executive with the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry.


Local pastor receives award for disaster response work

By e-Review Staff

The Rev. Thom Street recently received the “Volunteer Award” from the Florida Emergency Preparedness Association for his work in disaster response in Glades County. 

The Rev. Thom Street and his wife, Vickie, after the ceremony at which he received the volunteer award from the Florida Emergency Preparedness Association. Photo #09-1139. For longer description see photo gallery.

Street is pastor at First United Methodist Church of Moore Haven, Fla. He has also been the emergency coordinator for amateur or ham radio in Glades County since 2003. In 2008 he taught two amateur radio classes to train volunteers and received certification to give amateur radio license tests.

Street became a licensed operator in 1979 and has been doing emergency management through ham radio for more than 20 years, including after Hurricane Andrew in 1992. He and his son started two amateur radio emergency services in their county, one of which works with the U.S Department of Homeland Security.

Street is net controller for the Florida Conference’s network of amateur operators and disaster response coordinator for the southern half of the conference’s South West District. In that role he has helped lead recovery efforts through the conference for people affected by Tropical Storm Fay.

Since 2008 Street has served as board president of CREW (Community Rebuilding Ecumenical Workforce), the local long-term recovery organization operating since 2005 in Glades and Hendry counties. Working with CREW, Street and the members of his church have been heavily involved in response and recovery efforts following Hurricane Wilma.

More information about the conference’s amateur radio network is available in the e-Review article “Ham operators join disaster recovery team” at and on the AMEN Radio Web site at

Ham operators who are interested in joining the conference network may contact Pam Garrison, manager of the Florida Conference Disaster Recovery office, at 800-282-8011, extension 148, or


Florida Conference pastor joins college board

By Florida Southern College Public Relations Staff

LAKELAND, Fla. — The Rev. W. David McEntire was among the slate of new members who recently joined the Florida Southern College board of trustees.

Rev. David McEntire

McEntire is currently chairman of the Florida Conference board of trustees and has served on the board of trustees for the United Methodist Children’s Home, on the Florida Conference Board of the Ordained Ministry and as a delegate to the General and Jurisdictional conferences of The United Methodist Church.

McEntire is senior pastor at First United Methodist Church in Lakeland, Fla. Throughout his 28 years of service in the Florida Conference he has also served churches in Plantation, Oklawaha, Fort Pierce and West Palm Beach.

A native of Atlanta, McEntire graduated from Florida State University and received a master’s degree in divinity from Duke University.

Also newly elected to the board are Robert E. “Bob” Puterbaugh, who practices law in the Lakeland office of Peterson & Myers P.A.; The Honorable E.J. Salcines, a judge of the 2nd District Court of Appeal; and Robert W. Scharar, president of FCA Corp., a financial advisory and wealth management company in Houston.

Florida Southern began in 1882 as a school of the conference. Over the years, it became a seminary and a high school, moving several times. In 1887, the school moved to Leesburg from Orlando where it became known as Florida Conference College. In 1922, the school moved to Lakeland and in 1935 was renamed Florida Southern College.

Florida Southern is a private, comprehensive college with a liberal arts core. It offers 50 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business administration, education and nursing. It is ranked in the Top 10 “Best Baccalaureate Colleges in the South” by U.S. News & World Report and included in The Princeton Review’s “368 Best Colleges” guide and The Fiske Guide to Colleges 2009. Located on Lake Hollingsworth, Florida Southern is home to the world’s largest single-site collection of Frank Lloyd Wright architecture.


News media contact: Tita Parham, 800-282-8011,, Orlando

*Parham is managing editor of e-Review Florida United Methodist News Service.
**Peck is part-time communications director for the General Commission on United Methodist Men in Nashville, Tenn., and communications coordinator and editor of UM Men magazine.