Pastor Sivers Leaving Oneonta

Pastor Sivers

Leaving Oneonta

Common Council To Honor Cleric,

Trailblazers at Tuesday Meeting

Rev. Teressa Sivers

ONEONTA – Rev. Teressa Sivers, pastor of the First United Methodist Church since 2008, has announced that she is leaving the Oneonta church in late June to lead the United Methodist Church in Ithaca.

Common Council plans to honor Pastor Sivers’ Tuesday, as part of the ceremony for the 2018 Woman Trailblazers at 6:15 p.m. in City Hall.  The Trailblazers are selected annually by the the City Commission on Community Relations and Human Rights; Sivers has been a commission member during much of her tenure here.

Being honored as Trailblazers are Caroline Bagby and Jocelyn Plows in the Under 25 category, and Rachel Lutz Jessup in the Over 25 category.

“If you’ve attended any of the rallies or solidarity events in town, from the Massacre at the Pulse Club in Orlando, to the “Waterprotectors” at Standing Rock, to Pridefest, you’ve seen Teressa there as a welcoming, committed, collaborative catalyst and advocate, walking the talk and opening the doors of inclusion and equity,” the City said in a press release.

She served as a member of the City Commission on Community Relations and Human Rights, and in February 2010, she spearheaded the Unity/Diversity Event, which brought Dr. Boyce Watkins to Oneonta to meet with city leadership, followed by  a city wide presentation at SUNY Oneonta entitled “Let’s Talk About It: The National Conversation on Race.” Most recently, she was very instrumental in making the film series, “Race Matters” become a reality.  She created “Caring Connections,” bringing 70 area churches together to assist the needy.

Bagby is the editor of the Oneonta High School newspaper, The Echo and serves as a student representative to the Board of Education and as the VP of the Otsego County Young Democrats.

Plows, an Administrative Asst for the Life Skills Dept at Oneonta Job Corps Academy implemented several programs at OJCA  including Women’s Group and biannual Women’s Conference where she has opened students’ eyes to world of possibilities, experiences and educational opportunities.  She is also a certified Mediator for Catholic Charities in Oneonta, where she promotes non-violent resolution of conflicts between community members.

Rachel Lutz Jessup – Over 25 Category

Jessup was the first woman elected to join the Oneonta Rotary Club in 1989, and is active in organizing events throughout downtown Oneonta. She serves as the Assistant Vice President and Branch Manager of the Oneonta branch of the Bank of Cooperstown.


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