The Rev. Beverly Dempsey
Senior Pastor and Head of Staff
The Rev. Beverly Dempsey is the 12th installed pastor of Jan Hus Presbyterian Church and Neighborhood House, which has planted Neighborhood Esperanza and Dinner Party. She joined the congregation in 2014.
Beverly has a joy for corporate worship, and thrives on serving an open and welcoming, multi-cultural congregation with a passion for glorifying God through worship and just hospitality with all people, especially the most marginalized, vulnerable and oppressed. #WeAllBelong
Beverly brings to her years of pastoral ministry a wealth of experience from a first career in banking, an MBA in marketing and finance, and a second career in marketing and strategic planning. Beverly earned her Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in NYC and is in her final project phase of her Doctor of Ministry from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary.
Beverly is the Chair of the Board for the Urban Outreach Center of New York City and she serves on the Board of Trustees for Auburn Seminary. Beverly also serves on the Board of Trustees for the Presbytery of New York City where she is Co-chair of Budget and Finance and on the Property Committee.
Her family includes her husband, Joe, their seven-year-old son, Owen, four year-old daughter, Caitlin, her three adult step-children, Brian, Carolyn and Tom, and many foster children. She enjoys just about anything that takes her outside. Like golf and tennis, gardening and a little freestyle now and then. @packaginghope
The rev. derrick mcqueen, phd
Parish Associate - Neighborhood Esperanza
Dr. McQueen is a sought after preacher who has delivered sermons in the pulpits of Harlem Churches of St. James Presbyterian Church, The Abyssinian Baptist Church, Rendall Memorial Presbyterian Church, among others. His homilies have been featured at "Morning Light", the meditative service at The Riverside Church. He has also preached for the Metropolitan Association of United Church of Christ for their Martin Luther King Day commemoration, at the Briarcliff Congregational Church, Metro Baptist Church in NYC, the WeWo Service at Marble Collegiate Church, the Fourth Unitarian Universalist Society, as well as the historic Macedonia Baptist Church in Cape May, New Jersey.
Within the Presbyterian denomination Dr. McQueen worked on the successful campaign for LGBTQ inclusion in church life while serving on the boards of Presbyterian Welcome now Parity) and That All May Freely Serve. He has recently served as the Moderator of the Presbytery of New York City and now serves as the Chair of the General Cabinet. Currently, Derrick also serves on the boards of Auburn Theological Seminary, More Light Presbyterians, the LGBT Faith Leaders of African Descent the village of Harlem in New York City.
Dr. McQueen is the Associate Director for the Center on African American Research, Sexual Politics and Social Justice (CARSS) at Columbia University. He has worked as a community activist, social worker and is currently an Arts and Culture Poverty Scholar with the Poverty Initiative/Kairos at Union. He also tours a one-man show entitled, "Paul Robeson: Through His Words and Music" for the East Lynne Theater Company of Cape May and has performed the play at the New Jersey PAC as well as for benefit in Asheville, NC.
Derrick earned his Ph. D. in Homiletics and New Testament at Union Theological Seminary (NYC) and his M. Div. with a focus on Theology and the Arts, also at Union. He earned his B.A. in Theatre Arts at Drew University in 1987.
All in all, he is a man with many passions, joys, academic interests and a love of humankind. @DRocksHouse
The Rev. Jordan Tarwater
Executive Director - The Urban Outreach Center
Jordan is committed to a God of justice and grace, and, equally, to a Church that responds to those gifts in action, compassion and justice-centered hospitality. At Jan Hus, he leads the work of our Urban Outreach Center and is founding pastor of our newest worshiping community, Dinner Party.
Jordan received his Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York and was ordained into the Validated Ministry of The Urban Outreach Center of Jan Hus Presbyterian Church in February 2017.
He was raised in East Tennessee and graduated from Maryville College in 2013. He loves hiking and backpacking in the Appalachian mountains, spending time with his fiance, Mary, and watching Tennessee Volunteers football. He has yet to find a proper glass of sweet tea in New York City. You can follow him on Twitter at @JordanTarwater.
Chief Administrative Officer
Monica oversees building operations, communion set-up, administrative demands and financial matters, social media and too much more to write on a social media page.
She is married to Kelly McKinney and has two adult kids: Erin and James. As a family, they love the Boy Scouts, vacations in Taos, hanging out on the Upper West Side and supporting home schoolers. Oh! and don’t forget the dolphins. #SeaWorld
Lead Musician - Neighborhood Esperanza
Singer, musician, unicorn, lyricist and composer hailing from Saginaw, MI, RaShonda is a vibrant, young soul with a passion for bringing back the tasteful mastery of musicianship into the world of popular music. Her messages of positivity, self-care, healing, heartbreak, over-coming addiction, and love provide a refreshing take on life through the musical eyes of a black girl born on a Monday.
Bass Guitar - neighborhood esperanza
Karl is a veteran musician having played professionally throughout the United States, Japan, and the Caribbean. During that time, he has performed with numerous world-class musicians. Karl can be heard regularly around the NYC metro area with a variety of jazz, pop, and gospel groups. In addition to performing, Karl teaches privately, and is an author of instructional books for Cherry Lane Music. Two of his most recent books have included work with funk legend Bootsy Collins and Verdine White of Earth, Wind, and Fire. As a teacher, Karl’s goal is to let the student explore what they like about music while giving them a strong foundation. Having taught children and adults alike, he believes playing music is something that everyone can enjoy.
Drummer - Neighborhood Esperanza
A native of Zurich, Switzerland, Michael Vitali hit the New York music scene in 2002, shortly after graduating from Berklee College of Music. Though he arrived with little more than a change of clothes, a drum set and a voracious appetite for music, Michael immediately impressed his audiences and peers with his innate sensitivity and dynamism.
Vitali maintains an astonishing performance schedule, has has toured throughout the US and Europe, has recorded on several albums and has performed live. Steeped in jazz tradition, Michael is also known for his versatility. He is continuously exploring the breadth of musical offerings and showing off the distinct colors of his palette in many corners of the city.
Director and Interim Chef - Tuesday Evening Dinner Program
Assistant Director - The Urban Outreach Center NYC
Josephine is an urban outfitter for women, chef for hundreds, and counselor, confidant and friend for thousands. She will stock a pantry basket full of your favorite foods and deliver it to you faster than Jiffy can pop. She will manage a room full of volunteers with more authority, patience and grace than your favorite aunt and uncle combined.
Josephine is a native Brooklynite, mom of two, and spouse to Derrick.
Gérard Shaw - bon voyage!
Gérard was born in Vermont. For much of his life, he traveled extensively. Before coming to Jan Hus, he taught preschool in a poor barrio in Mexico City. He has taught and worked for several church charities and organizations in Honduras, Guatemala, Panama, Haiti, and the Philippines. Gérard enjoys painting with watercolors, reading in Central Park, and going to art museums.
Gerard was Jan Hus’ Hospitality Specialist for 13 years and until the sale and move from our former building. God speed, good health & best wishes, peaceful soul!
Hall Monitor, Sanitation and Sound
Derrick is a native New Yorker with a love for the City and the people here. He is an active bicycler, aspiring voice over star, and mixing genius. He maintains order and manages the sound board for Neighborhood Esperanza.
Spanish language liturgist and sous chef
Fulvia Vergel is our lead Spanish language liturgist at Neighborhood Esperanza. Always smiling and faithful, Fulvia rarely misses a service and never misses the opportunity to pray for others. She was born in Columbia, where her dear mother lives. Living in NYC for 26 years and when she is not volunteering as sous chef for the Urban Outreach Center, she is an actress appearing in television shows, movies and print.