Staff

Meet Our Staff

Rev. Dr. MJ Romano, Pastor


MJ is excited to have served the First Pres family since 2004. Her passions in ministry are in worship leadership and family ministry, and she loves a good potluck (maybe too much!). Her husband Chris Ludwig teaches science at La Junta High School, and they have two children, Elly and Karl. MJ stays active in the community through the Ministerial Association, Associated Charities, Wake Up Breakfast Committee, Fire Department chaplaincy, , plus various school activities with her children. She also teaches philosophy and ethics at Otero Junior College.


 Email MJ

Dean Rees, Organist


Dean is the organist for the church and is a music teacher at Washington Primary School in Rocky Ford. He is active in many musical events throughout the valley including Picketwire Players productions, Grand Theatre productions, and is the director for the OJC Student and Community Choir.

Arah Minck, Children's Minister


Arah is a faithful member of the church and a mother of four beautiful children. She is also an active rancher with love and respect for all of God's creatures. In her spare time her hobbies include crafting, crocheting, and spending time with her husband and kids.

Toni Cook, Treasurer


Toni has been a member of the church since 1976. She is a retired elementary teacher and elementary school principal. She loves to spend time with her family, travel and play bridge.

Aricka Hulsey, Secretary


Aricka has been a member of the church her entire life. She is a loving mother of one daughter along with her husband. They love the outdoors and family time.

Steve Elwood, Janitorial Engineer


Steve is originally from South Dakota and moved here with his wife Kristen. They are the most caring and nice people. They love to serve the lord and share his word, he helps his wife with the Middle School Youth Group and they are doing amazing things with that ministry!

Stephanie Rouille, Child Care Coordinator


Stephanie has been in this congregation for a few years now, has gone on Mission Trips and absolutely loves to work with Kids. She is a student at OJC and loves her family. She is a people person and is the sweetest.

Azucena Estrada, Bookeeper


Azucena comes with a wealth of experience in finance and human resources. She has a BA in Business Administration from Adams State University and currently serves the City of Rocky Ford as Finance & HR Director. She’s engaged to Matthew Holland of Swink and is the proud mom of son John Rocha III.

Ministry Staff


Pictured left to right: Chris Ludwig; Praise Band Leader, Jerry Chambers; Fellowship Coordinator, Marilyn Chambers; Worship Arts Director, Lindy Bay; Compassion Coordinator, Kristin Bickel; Congregational Care Coordinator, Kristen Elwood; Youth Ministries Coordinator, and Joey Gacnik; Assimilation Director. Our Ministry Staff works hard to spread their faith in many ways.