Reverend Dustin G. Longmire (he/ him or they/them)
Pastor & Executive Director
Born and raised in Connecticut, Rev. Longmire joined Messiah Lutheran Church as Pastor in August of 2014 after graduating from United Lutheran Seminary in Philadelphia.
During his time at seminary he participated in clinical pastoral education at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, engaged in a year of local faith-based advocacy work with the Lutheran Advocacy Ministry in Pennsylvania (LAMPa), interned with the Lutheran Office for World Community at the United Nations and served as Vicar of Saint Peter's Church in Midtown Manhattan.
Rev. Longmire received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Religion (with a focus on Islam) from the George Washington University in the spring of 2008 after interning with the Interfaith Alliance, the RFK Center for Human Rights and a number of congressional campaigns during undergraduate studies. He proudly served on staff for ten summers at Camp Calumet Lutheran in Freedom, New Hampshire.
He LOVES to have call called Upstate New York as his home for over ten years and has served in leadership roles with a variety of local and statewide interfaith justice movements and nonprofit organizations as Chair of the Schenectady County Food Council Advocacy & Empowerment Working Group, Chair of Schenectady Community Ministries (SiCM) Interfaith Task Force, Chair of the Schenectady Chapter of the Adirondack Mountain Club and President of the New York State Council of Churches.
His proudest professional achievements include leading Schenectady Community Ministries (SiCM) to become an interfaith organization in January 2020, his service of Messiah Lutheran Church as Senior Pastor during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Grand Opening of the Rotterdam Community Center in September 2023.
Dustin is a spouse, mystic, pastor, mountaineer and urban homesteader in that order. He and his beloved Rae have two lovely little fur babies, Willard Excelsior Bear and Ellowyn Frieda Little.
Pastor Dustin can be reached at 518.253.9978 or email@example.com.
Heather Zimmer (she/ her)
Director of Operations
Heather Zimmer has been a lifelong member of Messiah Lutheran Church and is a fourth generation of the Hallett family here in our congregation. In recent years she has started bringing her growing family into the church as well. She has been married to her husband, Yancey since 2018, she is a mom to her 3-year-old son, Pryor and has three amazing “fur” babies. Mac, a 8-year-old Border Collie, Millie, a 8 year old cat and Merlin, a young kitten. She currently has a bachelor’s degree in early childhood and volunteers as Sunday School Teacher. In her free time, she loves to loves to do crafts, enjoy family time and be outdoors as much as possible. She is looking forward to having an important role at this already amazing place.
Heather can be reached at 518.364.3216 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joe Paparone (he/ him)
Rev. Joe Paparone is a tri-chair and coordinator with the New York State Poor People’s Campaign. This movement seeks to carry forward Dr. King’s work by organizing poor and dispossessed people to confront the interlocking injustices of systemic racism, poverty, militarism, ecological devastation, and the distorted moral narrative of White Christian Nationalism. Joe’s background in organizing includes issues of healthcare, labor solidarity, criminal justice, and immigrant rights.
Joe is a lifelong New Yorker, growing up in the Mid-Hudson Valley, near New Paltz. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Music Education from the College of Saint Rose in 2004 and a Master of Arts in Global Leadership from Fuller Theological Seminary in 2012. He is a licensed minister with the Mennonite Church USA.
Joe lives in Albany with his wife Lesley and their dogs, Artax and Nym. He plays saxophone in the Victory Soul Orchestra and The Abyssmals, and in his free time he enjoys finding vegetarian restaurants and exploring the Adirondacks via foot, bike or canoe.
Joe is working with Messiah and the Rotterdam Community Center on a year long project supported by the Schenectady Foundation and in partnership with Schenectady Community Ministries (SiCM). He can be reached via email at email@example.com.
Douglas J. Chilton (he/ him)
Douglas J. Chilton has been the Minister of Music at Messiah Lutheran church since 1991. He received his music Bachelors from the Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam, and a Masters Degree from The College of St. Rose in Special Education. Doug has taught music in public and private schools since graduating in 1978. He plays piano on the side and has composed music. To Mr. Doug, the happiest part of his role at Messiah is the warm and family-feeling genuineness of the people. He has two fabulous sons, Daniel and Jeffrey, both of whom have degrees in music. His life-partner-wife-mother-of-sons is Cecile Stewart who Doug refers to as St. Cecile.
Sheri Lamb (she/ her)
Sheri is a fairly new member of Messiah. She is a retired florist and enjoys cleaning and organizing stuff so what could be a better job than to have her as our new custodian! Sheri also enjoys the outdoors, kayaking, singing and listening to music. You can also see her at a lot of our events lending a helping hand. She is also a caregiver who took care of her mom who had Parkinsons disease and she now helps a friend who has Alzheimers.
Suzanne Smedes, CPA (she/ her)