Sam Bartlett


Sam Bartlett is native of Galax who came back “home” after spending twenty years
in Kentucky and Florida as a pastor, church planter, motivational speaker, and
entrepreneur. He received his BA from Asbury College and his M.Div from Asbury
Theological Seminary. His is an author and a noted authority in the areas of team
building, customer service, leadership, employee engagement, and managing conflict
while implementing change. He has provided on-site training for companies such as
AT&T, Rockwell, Black & Decker, Johnson & Johnson and has helped both churches and
businesses accomplish their vision.

Sam is an outdoor enthusiast, a horse trainer, and a community leader. His personal
mission is to “liberate greatness”. He lives with Linda, his wife, and they are the proud
parents of five children, and are blessed with one granddaughter.

You may contact Pastor Sam Bartlett at

Pedro Alvarado

Hispanic Pastor

Pastor Pedro Alvarado was born and raised in Costa Rica where he received his engineering degree from the Costa Rica Institute of Technology. Later he completed his theological studies at the Baptist Bible Seminary of San Jose, Costa Rica, including his master’s degree in Ministerial Studies. He served as pastor in several churches in Costa Rica for a period of 22 years.

He assumed the role of Hispanic pastor on May 28, 2017. He is married to Rocío Hernández, also from Costa Rica.

You may contact him at or at (276) 233-0719.

Wendi Pemberton

Minister of Music
Wendi grew up in Galax, and after being gone from the area for a number of years, is glad to be back serving her home church.  She holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Church Music from Carson-Newman College.  She and her husband have two children.

Marlene Tipton

Administrative Secretary

Marlene Tipton joined the staff of FBC as administrative assistant in April, 2009.  During the previous seventeen years, she served as business manager for an orthopedic surgeon, and then office manager of the diverse properties and holdings of the physician’s estate. Marlene is the pianist at her church and thoroughly enjoys the many hours spent each week serving in the music ministry.  In her free time, she enjoys biking, walking, RVing, reading, and spending time with her family.  She and her husband, Bayne, are blessed with one son, two delightful grandchildren, and a daughter-in-law who is an inspiration. You may contact Marlene at

Marie Combs

Financial Secretary
Marie is a long-time Galax resident.  She graduated from Longwood College with a Bachelors of Music degree and from Radford University with a B.S. in Business Education.  Marie taught music and business at Galax High school for 31 years.  She began serving part-time as our financial secretary in 2012.  Marie is married to Dennis Combs and they have 3 sons.

Marian Porter

Preschool Director

Marian Porter has served as the Director of First Baptist Church’s Preschool ministry for twelve years.  Before, she served as director and teacher at Leighton Park Baptist Church’s Preschool for twenty-two years.  She and husband Lewis have been married for forty-six years and are blessed with two children and four grandchildren.  Marian considers it a blessing and joy to work with young children and playing an important part during their developmental years. You may contact Mrs. Porter at (276) 236-9195.

Patty Davis


Patty Davis has been playing the piano since she began taking private lessons at the age of eight.  She has always enjoyed playing in church and served at three other churches throughout southwest Virginia before coming to Galax.  After playing for special groups and occasions at First Baptist for several years, she became a member of the music staff in 2001. Patty has supplied piano accompaniment for musical productions by the Galax Theatre Guild and has served as the pianist for the Highland Camerata, a classical chorus with members from both Virginia and North Carolina. Patty is married to William “Bill” Davis, Jr. and they have two grown children.

Nancy Hazelwood


Nancy has been organist of First Baptist since Spring of 1983.  She holds BS and MS degrees from Radford University in Music and has accompanied various community choruses and theatre groups throughout Virginia.  She and her husband have two children and one grandchild.

Linda Bartlett

Praise Band and Orchestra Leader

Linda received a B.A. in Music Education from Asbury College.  She has been the band director in various schools and currently plays with the Old Pros in Dublin, VA as well as the Wytheville Community Band.  At FBC, Linda directs the adult and youth praise bands and the church orchestra.  She and her husband, Sam, are the proud parents of five children.

Martha Easter

Faith Community Nurse
Martha graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a B.S. in Nursing.  She currently works as an Infection Preventionist at Twin County Regional Hospital.  Martha is also a Basic Life Support Instructor for the American Heart Association.  She has served at the Faith Nurse for First Baptist since 2010.  Martha and her husband, Royce, are active in the Galax Fire Department.

Penny Adams

Bus Ministry Coordinator

Penny Adams faithfully volunteers as one of the coordinators of the church’s Bus Ministry, which has successfully operated for over ten years.  Penny, along with her husband Dick and other committed volunteers, picks up children in the local community and brings them to church on Sunday mornings. Contact Penny 276.233.2659

Paul Sawyers

Church Sexton

After retiring from a successful career with VDOT, Paul served as part-time custodian for the Carroll County school system.  He joined the FBC staff in 2011.  Paul and his wife Gwen reside in Fancy Gap.