INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana Bishop Mike Coyner announces the selection and appointment of the Rev. LeKisha Reed of New Orleans, La., as the new Associate Director for Missions and Advocacy for the Indiana Conference of The United Methodist Church effective July 1. Reed will be a new face to Indiana as she begins her work with Connectional Ministries Director Jim Bushfield as an employee of the new conference staff.
Coyner also announced that Ed Metzler, current Secretary to the Bishop, will continue to work with him as secretary. Also, Erma Metzler, current Communications Assistant, will continue serving with Communication Director Dan Gangler. Both their position descriptions will remain similar in the new conference.
Reed currently serves as associate pastor of First Grace United Methodist Church in New Orleans, a position she has served since June 2007. Previously, she served as pastor of the Boyntown UMC in Gretna, La. She also has served as a resident student chaplain in Atlanta, Ga., program director for the Summer Leadership Institute in New Orleans, and a ministry fellow of The Fund for Theological Education in Atlanta.
She is a 1994 graduate of Holy Names High School of Oakland, Calif.; a 2002 graduate of Dillard University of New Orleans (Bachelor of Arts Humanities) and a 2005 graduate of Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta (M.Div.). She spent 1990-2000 in the overseas student program at Ben-Gurion University in Beer-Sheba, Israel.
Reed is a Hurricane Katrina survivor and assisted her congregation and community of Gretna in recovery efforts following the August 2005 devastation.
In her application letter, she wrote, “I have worked with African American, White, Hispanic, Latino, Baptist, Catholic, Episcopal and Methodist congregations, training their young people in advocacy and mission work. My approach to mission and advocacy is to build on people’s strengths and assets and not solely focus on deficits and needs. This enables them to actively be a part of the solution.”
Ed and Erma Metzler, husband and wife, will continue their current positions at the Indiana Area office. Both are natives of Erie, Pa. Ed served 20 years as a public affairs specialist (both public relations and journalism) in the United States Air Force. Upon retirement, the Metzlers moved to Indianapolis, where Ed had previously served.
Ed began working as a freelancer with the Hoosier United Methodist conference newspaper in 1994 and has served nine years full-time in the area office and has served two bishops.
Erma has served 14 years as communication assistant to two directors of communication. They have two grown children and three grandchildren.