Our Staff

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Rev. Erik Hoeke

Pastor Erik feels right at home serving Avery UMC, where he has been since 2014. He grew up in the south hills of Pittsburgh, graduating from Upper St. Clair High School. He has a B.A. in Print Journalism from Ohio Northern University, and a Master of Divinity from Candler School of Theology (Emory University) in Atlanta, GA.

Pastor Erik has been serving as a pastor in Western Pennsylvania since 2008. He serves on the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry as the Provisional Residency Coordinator.


In the Washington community, Pastor Erik is an Adjunct Instructor in English at Washington & Jefferson College, and serves as Vice President of the Washington County Habitat for Humanity Board of Directors.

His spouse, Lisa, is a structural engineer who is also from the Pittsburgh area. When not at the church, you’ll likely find Pastor Erik running, watching baseball, reading, or drinking coffee.

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Office Manager

Linda Boice

Linda served in church music ministries for 36 years. Her tenure in that capacity facilitated the administrative experiences helpful in making a transition to church office management here at Avery. With a bachelors degree in Music Education, she has also served as a clinician and educator for various workshops and festivals in northeast U.S., has performed with Pastime Early Music Consort,  Beau Street Players, and currently serves as the Interim Artistic Director of Three Rivers Ringers.


Linda is a lifelong resident of Western PA, resides in Washington with her husband Matthew, a music educator and church musician, and is the proud mom of two very talented daughters.


Minister of Music

We're Hiring!

Avery UMC seeks a creative and energetic musician to provide musical accompaniment on a Clavinova for all worship at Avery UMC. Knowledge of a broad range of musical genres used in worship is preferred. Preference is for a blend of traditional, folk, and modern praise music. The accompanist will collaborate with the appointed pastor to plan all musical details of worship, and will be responsible for scheduling and accompanying musicians, soloists, and other musical offerings for worship. Compensation will be determined based on ability and experience.

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Jessica Garda

Jessica has been proud to call Avery her home church since 2017 and prays that her new position as church custodian will help her to give back to her congregation and church visitors.


Jessica grew up in a military family and has lived in three countries, six states, and 15 different cities. She finally settled down in Washington, PA in 2004, where she earned her bachelor’s degrees in psychology and theater. Shortly after finishing college, she met her husband Brant, a consultant and life-long Washington resident, and together they have two beautiful girls.