Mary McDonald is a multi-talented musician from Knoxville, TN. In addition to her work as a composer, arranger, producer, pianist, and organist, she was a sacred choral editor for nearly 20 years and currently serves as the organist for Central Baptist Church in Knoxville. Her music and talents have blessed choirs and congregations across the country for more than 25 years.
Mary is the composer of more than 600 published choral anthems, several Christmas and Easter cantatas, and numerous keyboard collections, and still serves as an editorial consultant for Lorenz. She is active as a choral clinician, traveling throughout the United States conducting workshops and concertizing. Her unique blend of heart, hands, and humor, combined with a wide range of writing and performing styles, keep her in constant demand. One of Mary’s greatest joys has been serving as accompanist for the Tennessee Men’s Chorale since 1985. In 2000, Mary served as the first female President of the Southern Baptist Church Music Conference. Mary is a 1978 graduate of Carson-Newman College. She and her husband, Brian, a Knoxville architect, have been married for more than 30 years and have two adult children.
Serving as Minister of Music and Worship at Huntsville’s First Baptist Church since 1998, Billy administers a growing ministry which includes fully graded choirs, multiple instrumental groups and ensembles, a music and technical staff, and diverse worship and concert programming. In addition to his role as a worship leader, he conducts three choirs (youth, adult and senior adult) and the orchestra of the church. The special presentations by First Baptist Church’s Music Ministry such as the Living Christmas Tree and the Spring/Easter concerts are enjoyed by thousands in the region.
Rev. Orton has been an instrumental and choral teacher, conductor and performer in numerous national and international settings, including Russia and Zimbabwe and served in an organizing and leadership role at the Baptists In Worship international conference in Berlin. He has been guest conductor for honor choruses, workshop/festival events and Baptist All-State Orchestras and has served as adjunct faculty on the collegiate level. He presently serves as the Artistic Director for the Huntsville Community Chorus Association and is an active brass musician. He has served on the Executive Council of the Baptist Church Music Conference, and was elected to national office of that organization in May of 2004 as the Vice-President of the Local Church Division.
Rev. Dr. Constance Cherry is Professor of Worship and Director of the Worship Major at Indiana Wesleyan University (Marion, Indiana). She is also on the faculty of The Robert E. Webber Institute for Worship Studies. Constance maintains an extensive schedule of speaking and teaching internationally. Her most recent book, The Worship Architect: A Blueprint for Developing Culturally Relevant and Biblically Faithful Services is available with Baker Books. Visit Dr. Cherry's website: www.theworshiparchitect.com.
Jayne Davis is a “girl from the Bronx who became a Baptist preacher in the South - a testimony to the providence and humor of God.” As a part of that journey, she earned a degree in Russian from Columbia University, lived and worked with homeless folks along with her husband Wes, worked with the Smart Start Early Childhood Initiative, received her Master of Divinity degree from Campbell University Divinity School and became the proud mother of Kayla, Christian, Meredith and Annie - all NC State fans. Despite telling God that she would not be a Baptist, work in a local congregation or serve in Christian education, Jayne has been the Minister of Spiritual Formation at First Baptist Church in Wilmington, NC since 2001. Also, she is part of the Hopeful Imagination ministry team and blogs on spiritual formation for the Associated Baptist Press.
NC Baptist All-State Youth Choir
The North Carolina Baptist All-State Youth Choir includes auditioned youth in grades 9-12
representing churches from all over the state.