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Presbyterians elect new executive for congregations in 4 Pa. counties

| Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
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The Rev. Richard “Skip” Noftzger, senior vice president of planning and institutional advancement at Waynesburg University, will be elected executive presbyter of Redstone Presbytery in Greensburg Saturday.

Representatives from dozens of Presbyterian churches from around the region elected the Rev. Richard “Skip” Noftzger Jr. as executive presbyter of Redstone Presbytery on Saturday.

Noftzger, 57, of Waynesburg will head the 79-congregation presbytery that covers Westmoreland, Fayette, Somerset and Cambria counties beginning April 1. He was elected 57-7 with one abstention at the meeting at First Presbyterian Church in Greensburg.

Under his terms of call, Noftzger's annual compensation package, including salary, housing, professional expenses, medical and pension benefits, will be $106,613.

Noftzger has served as interim pastor of Center Presbyterian Church in Peters Township since January 2012 when he left his post as a senior vice president at Waynesburg University.

“Thank you for your confidence. I look forward to us working together on behalf of our Lord Jesus Christ,” Noftzger said after the vote. “Let's thrive, not survive.”

Noftzger described himself as outgoing and passionate with a high level of initiative. He said he sees his role as executive presbyter as being a coach, consultant and “the glue” that holds member churches together in partnership.

An Oregon native, Noftzger earned a bachelor's degree in religious studies from Lewis and Clark College and a Masters of Divinity from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts.

Noftzger said he spent 28 years in higher education and was simultaneously a pastor at churches of varying size for many of those years. He worked in an administrative capacity at Muskingum College in Ohio and at the Pittsburgh-based Coalition for Christian Outreach before joining the staff at Waynesburg University.

Noftzger and his wife Martha have been married for nearly 29 years and have two grown sons, Ben and Tim.

Kari Andren is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-850-2856 or kandren@tribweb.com.

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