Tifton First United Methodist Church

Our Awesome Team

Get to know the TFUMC staff

Senior Pastor


(229) 382-6100 ext. 106


Rev. Chip Grantham


Senior Pastor

Chip Grantham has a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Management from GA Tech, and a Masters of Divinity from Emory University.  He’s served on church staff at Ingleside UMC (Macon), Northside UMC (Atlanta), and here as the Associate Minister for Youth and the Associate Minister from 91-97.  While he was here, he married his wife Stephanie, and they had their first daughter, Bailey.  After leaving us, they went to Montezuma UMC, where they had their second daughter, Marlyn.  Then they served the Upatoi and Box Springs Charge, and their last appointment was to Brooklet UMC.  Chip has served and serves in numerous District and Conference responsibilities, and has continued his education beyond seminary as a participant in the National Institute in Christian Leadership, the Billy Graham School of Evangelism, Catalyst, and the World Methodist Evangelism Institute.  He’s certified as a Stephen Ministries Trainer, a Wilderness First Responder, he’s certified in Managing a Rock Site, and in various leadership positions in Boy Scouts.  He enjoys spending time with his family, hunting, fishing, the outdoors, woodworking, and sports. 

Rev. Robby Paulk

Associate Pastor

Associate Pastor


(229) 382-6100 Ext 103


Interim Director of Music Ministries

(229) 382-6100 ext. 107


Kendra Gannaway

Director of Children's Ministries


(229) 382-6100 ext. 117


Annie Paulk


Director of Childrens Ministries


Annie has been with us as Director of Children’s Ministries and Christian Education since January 2017. She has a B.S. in Sociology from North Georgia College and State University. Annie has been married to Rev. Robby Paulk for 14 years and they have two children; Austin and Katherine. Annie has a heart for working with children and serving with others to educate, grow faith and make disciples in our next generation. In her spare time she enjoys going on adventures with her family and playing the Flute.


Director of Youth Ministries


(229) 382-6100 ext. 119


Aaron McCalvin


Director of Youth Ministries


Aaron has been on staff with us as the Director of Student and College Ministry since June 2017.  Prior to being on staff at Tifton First, Aaron served in student ministry in the South Georgia conference since 2004.  Aaron is married to Emily and they have three children.  Aaron has a heart to serve the students of our community and hopes to earn the right to share the Gospel of Jesus.  In his spare time he enjoys coaching sports, playing golf, playing guitar, and his family.

Preschool Director


(229) 382-6100 ext. 108


Lauren Fresh


Preschool Director


Lauren joined our staff in June 2017 after having taught at First Methodist Preschool for 3 years. She grew up in Tifton and in First Methodist. After graduating from the University of Georgia, she taught middle and high school English/Language Arts. Lauren is married to Eddie and they have two boys – James and Will. She loves to read and travel!

MaraDare Day


Director of Recreation


Recreation Director


(229) 382-6100 ext. 112


MaraDare joined the staff in 2005.  She is originally from Tifton.  She moved to Dahlonega, GA after graduations where she received her B.S from North Georgia College and State University.  After graduations, she moved to Athens where she completed her Masters in Recreation Administration.  After working in Gwinnett County for 2 years, she and her husband Cal moved back to Tifton.  They have two girls- Grayson Anne and Anna Cate.  MaraDare has worked for day Camps, sports camps and residential camps.  She loves that she gets “play for a living”.  She enjoys spending time with her family, time at the beach, deep sea fishing or just relaxing in the backyard with friends and family. 

Media & TV Director


(229) 382-6100


Harris Tucker


Media and Television Director


Started the Television Ministry in 1985.  It has developed to include two Sanctuaries with sound, media, and TV.

Earned a BS in Biology in 1973 from Georgia Southern University, a Masters of Education in 1977 from Valdosta State University, and a Specialist of Education in 1989 from the University of Southern Mississippi.  He has one son Britt, an ER nurse at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta.

Becky Rogers




Rebecca (Becky) Rogers graduated summa cum laude from Shorter University in Rome, GA, with a Bachelor of Music Degree in piano performance and a minor in organ.  While in college, she performed in numerous concerts, including the International Youth Music Festival in Gratz, Austria.  She graduated Valedictorian of her high school class and was selected to attend the Governor’s Honors Program at Wesleyan College in piano.  In addition, she took first place in piano in the State literary Meet.  She has taught piano and has served in church music ministry for the past 45 years in various cities.  As full-time music teacher at Tiftarea Academy, she presently teaches all students pre-K through 5th grade.  Mrs. Rogers has served as Organist at Tifton FUMC since 2007. In addition, she has shared her musical gifts as Organist and Director of Graded Choirs at Milledge Avenue Baptist Church in Athens GA; Church Pianist for First Baptist Church in Fitzgerald, GA; Music and Youth Director of Ocilla Baptist Church in Ocilla, GA; Organist and Children’s Choir Director at Arbor Baptist Church in Fitzgerald, GA; and Piano Instructor (private and class) at Abraham Baldwin College in Tifton, GA.  She is married to Richard Rogers.  They have three children, George, Mary Alice, and Sara Beth, and six grandchildren.

Sissy Martin


Church Hostest

Church Hostest


(229) 382-6100 


Kendra Gannaway

Interim Director of Music & Pianist

Financial Secretary


(229) 382-6100 ext. 104


Candace Darden

Financial Secretary

Candace joined FUMC staff July 15, 2014 as Financial Secretary, later having Business Manager added to her job title.  She moved to Tifton for the job at FUMC coming from Denver/Aurora, Colorado.  Prior to Colorado, Candace lived in Surprise, Arizona.  She was the Church Secretary/Bookkeeper at Grand Community Baptist Church for 8 years.  Candace, a life-long Methodist, was born in College Park, Georgia and lived her “growing up” years in College Park and Forest Park.  All 3 of her children were born in Atlanta; Angie Wade, who lives in Destin, Florida; Scott Copeland, deceased; and Lesley Thompson, who lives with her family in Winter Park, Florida.  Candace moved to be close to her parents in 1982 to New Smyrna Beach, Florida.  There Candace worked for Coronado Community United Methodist Church and CorMeth Day School in various positions for 25 years.  Candace also ran a cleaning business in NSB for 16 years, before moving to Arizona.  Candace has 4 grandchildren, Zachary and Austin, who live in Memphis, TN, and Mia Rose and Sophia Scott, who live in Florida.

Church Secretary


(229) 382-6100 ext. 100


Debbie Minton


Church Secretary


Debbie Minton joined the staff of FUMC as Church Secretary on March 20, 2017.  Before coming to First Methodist, she was the Music Secretary for 5 ½ years for the Minister of Music and Worship at First Baptist Church, Tifton, where she is also a member.  Prior to that, she worked at ABAC for over 10 years.  She moved to Tifton, with her family, on her 8th birthday and this has been home ever since.  She has one son, Brian, who is married to Elizabeth (Jones) and three grandchildren, Taylor, Chandler, and Scarlett.  In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and reading.