Our Pastor & Staff
C. Nels Ledwell
On June 18th 2006, St. Paul's Waccamaw
UMC welcomed Reverend C. Nels Ledwell as our new pastor. Nels was born in Union, S.C. and graduated from high school in 1978. He earned an Associate
degree in Science in 1980 and a Bachelor of Science in Biology in 1983, both at The University of South Carolina.
Nels entered graduate school in 1985, but later joined the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control where he became an Environmental Quality Manager for over six years. During this time he enjoyed being in the cattle ranching business with his father, but was soon called into the ministry, after working with youth and the church sound system at Grace UMC in Union. Nels had planned to enter Duke Divinity School in 1991, but after his father was diagnosed with terminal cancer he chose Erskine Theological Seminary to be closer to home. He began his appointed ministry as a church pastor in June of 1991 and graduated from Erskine with a Master of Divinity degree in 1994. Nels has also done postgraduate work at the University of Alabama and Clemson University.
Nels served the Asbury-Mesopotamia Charge in Gaffney, SC, then moved to Simpsonville UMC where he served as Associate Minister of Youth and Evangelism. His last
7 years have been at St. Paul UMC in Saluda, S.C. where he served as the pastor. While at St. Paul, he enjoyed working as a law enforcement chaplain and serving the District Committee of the Ordained Ministry.
Cindy Smith, Director of Ministries, is a creative Christian Educator with a passion for ministry with over 15 years of experience serving as a Family Ministry Director for Providence United Methodist Church and St. Stephen United Methodist in Charlotte, NC, and as Program Ministries Coordinator for Myers Memorial Methodist Church in Gastonia, NC.
Cindy has served as a presenter at the national conference of CEF: Christian Educators Fellowship. And, she has written curriculum for the United Methodist Church Publishing House
Cindy is a Clemson Grad (Go Tigers!) and a MCE: Masters in Christian Education grad from Pfeiffer University. She has always loved the beach and recently moved to the coastal area from Charlotte. She has twins, Keith and Katie, attending college, and a son Ben and wife Kristen, with adorable grandbaby Riley (One year old on December 1), living in Fletcher near Asheville, NC.
In addition to Christian Education, Cindy has a background in public relations and marketing for non-profit organizations including the American Red Cross and Goodwill Industries. Cindy also enjoys creative writing, beach activities with family and friends, including fishing with Pawpaw and attending local art and music festivals.
Baxter, Director of Music Ministries, has been a staff member at St. Paul's
Waccamaw UMC since 1993, directing an outstanding choir and overseeing the music department.
A graduate of Oberlin Conservatory, Ohio, he pursued his MA. at New York University, and received a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Musicology from Catholic University of America in Washington, DC.
Bob and his wife Eva moved to Surfside Beach in 1991 after he retired from teaching high school choral music in Arlington County, Virginia. When they first came to the Myrtle Beach area, Bob took lessons in oil painting, and for several years, painted beach and ocean scenes. When he became busy with music activities, there was little time for anything else, so Eva has taken over his studio, where she works daily on her porcelain art, painting china.
Although Bob is primarily a choir director, he is also a professional singer, a bass-baritone. In recent years he has sung the bass solos from the MESSIAH with the Long Bay Symphony Chamber Ensemble and J. S. Bach's MAGNIFICAT in Wilmington, NC. He has also recorded several CD's of classical, spirituals and popular songs.
He tries to get in three to four rounds of tennis each week and is an avid workout person, getting to Healthpoint Fitness Club several times weekly.
If you are new to the area, we invite you to visit St. Paul's
Waccamaw. Under the direction of Dr. Baxter, the Chancel Choir participates in the 8:45 a.m. Sunday service, and the Praise
Choir, a small ensemble, is part of the more casual service at 11:00 a.m.
serves as Director of Praise Choir. Since that time the choir has expanded and welcomes all who would like to “sing a joyful” noise during the 11:00 a.m. service.
Chuck’s most recent profession is that of a Professional Photographer for commercial, portraiture and weddings.
He graduated from Midwestern State University with a degree in B.M.E. with a concentration on voice. In 1985 he received his Master’s Degree in Sacred Music, in conducting, and also is Post graduate in Vocal Pedagogy.
His music background includes Minister of Music at FUMC in Hurst TX being responsible for 11 different choirs; some of his other music positions include, Minister of Music/Evangelism at St. Luke UMC, Haltom City, TX, Director of Programming at St. Paul’s Waccamaw UMC (this was a part time position) and Musical Director/Conductor of the Indigo Choral Society.
Hall-Chidley is the Administrative Assistant at
St. Paul's Waccamaw UMC. She is married to Eric
Chidley, formerly of Toronto, Canada. A native of Pawleys Island, her maternal grandparents were here in plantation days, having owned Brookgreen and Litchfield Plantations.
Her great-grandfather, Louis Claude
Lachicotte, with others, started the first canning factory in South Carolina at Litchfield Plantation in 1890. A graduate of Winyah
High School in Georgetown, she attended Winthrop College in Rock
She has previously worked in the banking and real estate industry. She has a daughter, son-in-law and two grandchildren.
Mrs. Olivia Huggins - Organist/Pianist, earned her B.A. in Music Education from Lander University in Greenville,
SC and her Masters from the University of SC.
She is a teacher at the McDonald Elementary School in Georgetown, teaching music K through fifth grade. In addition she directs the Beach Singers, a group of talented sixth through twelfth graders, selected from the various Georgetown County Schools.