DR. EUGENE H. WINKLER, Interim Pastor
The Reverend Dr. Eugene H. Winkler serves as Interim Pastor of Community Church. Gene is a “retired” Methodist pastor whose last pastorate was the flagship Chicago Temple, First United Methodist Church in the Loop. Prior to his thirteen years at The Temple, Gene served for sixteen years at Community United Methodist Church, Naperville. Both of those congregations grew dramatically under his leadership. His first church in the Chicago area, Faith United Methodist in Waukegan, was in danger of disbanding when he took over, and it grew to thrive again with significant increases in worship attendance mission.
Because he "cannot just stop being a pastor," Gene has served in several interim pastorates since retiring in 2001. During his most recent interim stint, University Church of Chicago, a UCC congregation in Hyde Park, experienced growth and has continued to grow with their new pastor. Gene was known for extraordinary pastoral care, powerful preaching and his energy in working with every aspect of the church's life.
Gene was one of the founders of Protestants for the Common Good and has a very long, active involvement in social justice issues. He served as president of the Interfaith Coalition for the Homeless from 1995 until 2001; has served chair of the board of the Greater Chicago Broadcast Ministries; and has been on numerous other community service and religious boards.
Gene loves stories and tells them well. He writes short stories and often uses them in his sermons. His enthusiasm for ministry, his interest in people and love for them, his easy way of relating to others and his strong spiritual presence help people to know that anything is possible with God. He is very sure of God's presence and guidance in his life; he loves all aspects of ministry and even loves fundraising.
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WINIFRED F. BROWN, Music Director
Winifred Brown has been the Community Church of Wilmette's
music director since August 2002.
Globally respected and critically acclaimed as a singer,
Winifred has a musical resume that is truly impressive. She
has shone in such demanding roles as Norma (Paris Opera, New
York City Opera, Caracas, Mexico City), Lucia (Deutsche Opera
Berlin, Miami, Guadalajara, Monterrey), Violetta (San Francisco,
Los Angeles, Mexico City), Donna Anna (Deutsche Opera, Cologne,
Rome, Parma, Milwaukee) and Rosalind (Lyric Opera of Chicago,
Houston). She was with the Metropolitan Opera for four seasons
where she performed with James Levine and such world-renowned
artists as Luciano Pavarotti and Sam Ramey in I Lombardi and
The Magic Flute. She has portrayed seventy roles and has been
featured in virtually all the regional opera companies of
North America. Winifred is also well-known as a concert soloist,
having performed with such groups as the New York Philharmonic,
the Philadelphia Orchestra and Grant Park Symphony. Winifred
has sung many pops and Broadway concerts, and is currently
with a cutting edge jazz ensemble that integrates art, song,
opera, jazz and electronic sound. She is also founder and
artistic director of N.O.V.A., a service-based touring company.
In addition, she maintains a voice studio in Chicago that
trains, polishes and promotes young artists.
What makes this enormous talent just right for the Community
Church of Wilmette is that Winifred wants life and work in
the church to be an expression of her deep Christian faith.
She works to create a music program that involves as many
people as possible in enriching worship and forming relationships.
She sees music in our church as one of the things that can
bind us together in love for God and for one another, and
as something with which we, as a congregation, can reach out
to people around us and involve them in.
MATT LONG, Organist
Known for his versatility and sensitive musicianship, pianist Matt Long plays in a variety
of styles with spirit and ease. A native of Kansas, Matt graduated with highest distinction
from Northwestern University's School of Music in 1994. Since then he has been a busy free
lancer in the Chicago area.
As a vocal and choral accompanist Matt has worked for the Community Renewal Chorus, Old
St. Patrick's Church concert choirs, and Roosevelt University among many others. For eight
years he has been the pianist for Lyric Opera's Meet the Artist outreach programs, and has
accompanied several singers in recitals at the Chicago Cultural Center. Matt's own annual s
olo recitals, given as benefits for the Community Renewal Chorus and featuring music from B
eethoven to James Brown, have increasingly thrilled larger and larger audiences over the la
st four years. An avid performer of new and experimental classical music Matt made frequent
appearances with Ensemble Noamnesia as well as CUBE and Fred Longberg-Holm's Lightbox Orch
estra during the 1990s. More recently he has recorded and performed with Milwaukee-based ps
ychedelic rock band the Danglers, and created shows with local cabaret favorite Scott Montg
omery. Additionally, Matt provides elegant music for weddings, parties, and special events,
including a two year stint playing for afternoon tea at Chicago's five-star Peninsula Hote
l. Matt was thrilled to join the staff of Community Church of Wilmette as Organist in Febr
GEORGIA REVIS, Church Administrator
Georgia Revis has been the church administrator for The Community Church of Wilmette since August 2011. She and her husband John, a physician, have five children ranging in age from 15-21. They have lived in Wilmette for over 20 years. Georgia has been involved in many school and community related organizations.
TRIPP HUDGINS, former pastor
Rev. Tripp Hudgins was our pastor from June of 2006 to August of 2011. We are in the search process for a new pastor. If you would like more information, please contact the office at email@example.com.