Meet Our Staff
Reverend Laura Young
Rev. Laura Young was ordained an elder in The United Methodist Church in 2011. She comes to Summit after serving in the nonprofit world for the past six years. Most recently, she was the Executive Director of the Ohio Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (www.ohiorcrc.org), a state affiliate of the national RCRC. Prior to focusing on reproductive freedom, Laura worked to end child poverty for Children's Defense Fund in its Ohio office, expanding Freedom School and mobilizing communities for social action throughout Ohio. Before that, she was associate pastor at New Life UMC in Columbus, a mission site for our denomination, which serves food, clothing, and healthcare to extremely poor Ohioans. In May, just before the UMC General Conference, Laura joined 110 other LGBT United Methodist clergy in signing a "coming out" letter to the church (https://www.rmnetwork.org/newrmn/calledout/).
Laura received her Master of Divinity from the Methodist Theological School in Ohio and earned a bachelor's degree at The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, but says her blood runs scarlet and gray because her parents went to OSU and her son is a junior there! She is mom to Liza, 23, and Nick, 20, and lives in Westerville. She enjoys playing the piano, reading, and hip-hop dancing in her sister's kitchen.
Director of Music Ministries
With a strong classical background and experience in the genres of musical theater, jazz, and rock/blues, Susan McQuilkin brings an unusual level of musical diversity to the music program at Summit on 16th. She earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Kent State University, studying organ with John Ferguson and Larry Smith, and choral conducting with Vance George, who subsequently won four Grammy awards for his recordings with the San Francisco Symphony Chorus. Sue earned a Master of Music degree at the University of Tennessee, studying organ and harpsichord with John Brock. Sue also studied jazz piano for a number of years with Bruce Hartung at Capital University in Bexley. She has played piano in the orchestra pit for musical theatre productions at Phoenix Theater, Columbus Children’s Theatre and Davis Discovery Center in Columbus, and played keyboards and sang backup vocals in several local rock, alternative and blues cover bands. Sue is a member of FUMMWA, Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts. She is married to Dale Collmer, who sings bass in Summit Singers and plays bass in our Summit Band. Sue’s many years of piano teaching have given her a heart for encouraging musical talent and introducing new participants into Summit’s music program.
Sharon has spent the past few decades of her life being the following: a C++ coder, a math tutor, an art director, A Dick & Jane Project musician and writer, a vegan baker, a Republican, an introverted first-generation Nigerian-American, a pianist in over 25 bands, short-order cook, a church choir accompanist, a David Byrne enthusiast, a mediocre (very mediocre, leaning towards just plain bad) alto saxophone player, and a hip-hop dance teacher. Sharon has been described as the following: a warm bowl of soup, a tornado, a jalapeño pepper, a Jackson Pollock painting, a bulldozer, and the granddaughter of James Brown and Nina Simone. Sharon would like to spend the next few years of her life doing the following: exploring what kids’ maximum potential looks like by pumping them chock-full of self-esteem, playing the piano as much as humanly possible, and wearing all the colors all the time.
Director of Operations
John spent eight years in Romania and Moldova where he encountered and was transformed by the presence of love among at-risk and institutionalized children. These children instilled in him a fierce belief in the inherent dignity of all people, a belief that led him to his involvement at Summit on 16th. Outside of work, John enjoys playing cello, practicing Ashtanga yoga, cooking plant-based meals and spending time with his wife, Rachel, and son, Oscar.