Senior Pastor – Rev. Fred A. Steinberg
Rev. Fred Steinberg was born in San Diego, California and grew up in Escondido. Fred attended San Diego State University where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. After his graduation he attended Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX where he received his Master of Divinity degree. After graduating from Perkins in 1987, Fred served as Associate Pastor at Central U.M.C in Phoenix, AZ for two years. His primary responsibilities at Central included Evangelism and Youth Ministry. In 1989, Fred was appointed to serve at Velda Rose U.M.C. in Mesa where his primary duties included Education and Youth.
After serving as Associate Pastor at Velda Rose U.M.C. for eight years, Fred was appointed in 1997 as Senior Pastor of Gold Canyon U.M.C. Since the building of the congregation’s first building in 1997, the church has grown to a worship attendance of 450 during the summer and about 1,800 during the winter visitor season.
Fred and Beth Steinberg were married in 1982 and have one son, Tim, who is currently attending Arizona State University.
Associate Pastor – Rev. Bob Deits
Bob has been a United Methodist Minister for 47 years. After serving churches in southern California, he was appointed as Senior Minister of St. Paul’s UMC in Tucson in 1978, where he served for 11 years until being appointed as Senior Minister at Velda Rose UMC in Mesa in 1989. After 13 years he retired in 2002.
In 2004 he became a part time Minister of Visitation at Velda Rose and part time Associate Minister at Gold Canyon UMC, positions he continues to hold today. At Gold Canyon, Bob leads a country western worship service every Sunday at 5 PM from October through June. He also preaches for the morning services in the absence of the Senior Minister and for special holiday services.
Bob is an internationally recognized authority on grief and loss. His book, Life after Loss, has become a classic in the field of loss and grief since it was first published in 1988. The present 5th edition was published in 2009. Sales of the book have exceeded 140,000 copies. It is translated into 7 foreign languages (Spanish, French, German, Chinese, Russian, Hebrew and Greek). He was the keynote speaker at the World Burn Congress in Raleigh, NC in 2008.
Bob is a graduate of California State College, Los Angeles. He holds a Master of Theology degree from the Claremont California School of Theology in pastoral counseling and psychology.
Bob and June were married March 15, 1952. They have 3 children, 10 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren.
Associate Pastor – Rev. Fay Quanstrom
Fay Quanstrom has served two senior pastorates in llinois as well as being visiting minister, Methodist Central Hall, London, England, and holding staff positions in Elburn and Big Rock, IL churches. She holds an M.A. in Old Testament and the D.Min. in Preaching from Northern Theological Seminary. She has also taught at the junior high, high school, and university levels and edited a preaching textbook.
Associate Pastor – Rev. Joel Hurley
Joel has served pastorates in Michigan for over thirty years. His last appointment was to the Good Shepherd United Methodist Church in Roscommon, Michigan. Joel is a graduate of Central Michigan University and Asbury Theological Seminary with a Masters of Divinity Degree.
He and his wife, Donna, retired to Apache Junction, Arizona in 1998. One reason they chose the Gold Canyon UMC was because of its superb music ministries. They both sang in the Chancel choir for ten years. Since that time, Joel has been serving as volunteer liturgist and has led in the congregational prayers.
The focus of his ministry as part of the pastoral team is coordinating pastoral visitation, hospital and long term care visitation, home visitation and connecting volunteers to various caring ministries..
Director of Music Ministries – Douglas J. Benton
Doug came to Gold Canyon United Methodist Church with a forty year history in sacred music which began as an Organist and Choir Director at age 14, at churches in the Phoenix area. By age 25, he had added Bellmaster to his résumé. Doug became an Adjunct Professor of Music at Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff in 1989 where he founded the NAU Harter Memorial Handbell Program and directed the NAU Summer Music Camp handbell choirs through 2000.
Doug’s musical accomplishments include organ performances throughout the Southwestern United States and Helsinki, Finland. He performed “Messiah” with the Phoenix Symphony and the ASU Symphony as organist. Doug has conducted Handbell Festival Massed Choirs throughout the country, guest conducted the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra and the Arizona Masterworks Chorale. He has been a handbell clinician at local, national and international handbell events. Many of Doug’s handbell related articles have been published in Overtones, the official journal of the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers, including the first major research on Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Handbell Ringing. As a composer and arranger, Doug composed and arranged music for handbells, organ, choir, brass and orchestra and is published by five major publishing houses. Most recently, he was commissioned by NAU to write the Processional and Prayer for the 30th Annual NAU Choral Holiday Dinners performed December 2004 in Flagstaff.
Doug is an active member of several professional organizations, including the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers (AGEHR), the American Guild of Organists (AGO), and the Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts (FUMMWA). He served on the Board of Directors of the Arizona Masterworks Chorale and the Valley Choral Alliance and has held many offices in the Central Arizona Chapter of the AGO, including Sub-Dean, and served the AGEHR as Arizona State Chair and Chair of Area XI (AZ, CO, NM, UT, WY). In addition to many national committees, Doug served on the National Board of Directors of the AGEHR, most recently as Chair of the Director Education Department for the Guild.
Associate Director of Music – David Ballard
David was born in Marion, Indiana. His family moved to eastern PA, where David attended Millersville University and met his wife, Carol. David graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Penn State University. David then worked for Bulova Technologies in Lancaster, PA and was transferred to the Phoenix area in 1997. He now works for Ricoh USA in Tempe as a Senior Billing Associate.
After volunteering as a drummer for many months at GCUMC, David became leader of the Uncommon Grace Praise band. He also directed the Children’s Choir, several children’s musicals, and Joyful Noise, a contemporary, women’s and teen choir. Since approximately 2004, David has served as Associate Director of Music, leading Uncommon Grace at the Praise Service and One in the Spirit at the 5:00 o’clock Country Western Service. David and Carol have two children and one grandchild
Assistant Director of Special Music – Cynthia Hoff
Before moving to the Southwest, Cynthia was a Vocal Performance student at Oberlin Conservatory. She received her Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Grand Canyon University and holds a Master of Music in Vocal Performance Pedagogy at Arizona State University. Her performances include various roles in Lyric Opera and Musical Theatre. Among her repertoire, as the soprano soloist, is the Bach Magnificat, Rutter Requiem, Mozart Requiem, Vivaldi Gloria and the Mozart Coronation Mass. She has performed in prestigious choirs that have toured the United States and Europe with whom she has soloed in Carnegie Hall, and Notre Dame Cathedral. Cynthia has sung the National Anthem at Chase Ball Park, composed and recorded two original songs, as well as a full length CD of inspiring hymns. Recent awards include, First Place in the 2010 United Methodist Southwestern Regional Conference, “Got Talent” Contest and 2nd place National Winner in the American Mothers Association Vocal Competition in 2006. She has also performed sacred and patriotic concerts in various community events, including during a recent trip to the Ukraine.
Cynthia is an active sacred soloist performing throughout the valley and beyond. She also sings soprano as a member of the Phoenix Symphony Chorus, and the Gold Canyon United Methodist Chancel Choir, where she is also the Assistant Director of Special Music. She is a member and currently on the board as past President for the Valley of the Sun Chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing, (NATS),
Cynthia joined the Chandler Gilbert Community College Music Department as Adjunct Music Faculty in the spring of 2007 in addition to her private studio in Mesa. Cynthia’s students have been NATS Winners, Arizona Regional and All State Choir participants. Several of her students continue on with vocal pursuits at the college level and have performed leading roles in local community musical theatre.
Director of Christian Education & Outreach – Katharine Keller
Katharine moved to Arizona 5 years ago when her husband, Pastor Julius Keller, was called to start a church in Gilbert. Katharine has been a Christian Education Director since 1988, serving both in Presbyterian and Methodist congregations in Ohio. Before serving on staff she was an ardent Sunday School teacher for both adults and children. Besides ministry within the church, Katharine finds great fulfillment and purpose serving on the Board of Gilbert Leadership and playing an active role as a volunteer for the Gilbert Fire Department. Her hobbies include travel, hiking, birding, and just general adventure wherever it leads. She and Julius have six children and 4 grandchildren with two more on the way.
Director of Youth Ministries – Beth Steinberg
Beth Steinberg, Director of Youth Ministries, was born in Gardner, Massachusetts and grew up as a preacher’s kid. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from San Diego State University. Fred and Beth have one adult son, Tim. Beth has over 30 years of experience working with different youth groups as an adult volunteer. She was hired to work as the Youth Director at this church starting in April 2015. Beth and her husband, Fred believe that youth ministry is a priority. They work as a team co-leading the Sunday night youth program along with a great group of volunteers! Beth also facilitates the Sunday morning class for the youth.