Get to know the First Pres Church staff

Rev. Dr. Brian R. Paulson

Pastor/Head of Staff

Brian enjoys the “call of a lifetime” with our congregation in Libertyville at the heart of Lake County. He joyfully claims Libertyville as the place he has called home longer than anywhere else as an adult. Brian was raised in Southern California on bluffs that overlook the Pacific Ocean at a place called, Palos Verdes. He studied at Georgetown University and received degrees from U.C.L.A., Princeton Theological Seminary, and Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, Virginia. Dr. Paulson continues to write and to research connections between worship and daily life. Brian fell in love with his wife Jill, also a Presbyterian pastor, while studying at Princeton. Jill and Brian started their marriage in Michigan, bringing two beautiful children into a world of strong Midwestern values. Their children, Annie and Ben, enjoyed a childhood of sun while Brian served eleven years as Pastor at Orangewood Presbyterian Church in Phoenix, Arizona. Annie is now a teacher who is happily married and mother of a cheerful boy. Ben launched a career in music, the environment and service in North Carolina. Their family shares a love of music. Every now and then Brian will play the French horn and piano for enjoyment. In his youth, he performed and directed music in a variety of settings. Brian speaks Italian and Spanish with some fluency and maintains many Christian friendships across the seas. In his free time, he loves to paint, photograph and bike on trails and beside our lakes. Brian likes to hunker down with a good book in winter and loves taking a nap in the summer breezes of a day off in Lake County. You can learn more about Brian (his background, social media, and various interests) 

Rev. Amy Heinrich

Associate Pastor, Congregational Life

Pastor Amy received her Masters of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in New York City and served as Chaplain at Colorado College and Austin College, and as Campus Pastor at University of Wisconsin, Madison. Before coming to First Pres Libertyville, she served as Associate for Campus Ministry at First Presbyterian Church, Ann Arbor and the Ecumenical Center and International Residence. Her ministry focus at First Presbyterian Church of Libertyville  is discipleship building through Andrew Ministry and classes for prospective new members; fellowship and growth through small groups; and compassion and care through hospital visits, prayer and Stephen Ministry.

Amy's husband and soul mate, Rob, is in private practice in Clinical Psychology at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Lake Forest. They live in Prairie Crossing, a conservation community in Grayslake. Hiking the trails there, with her Irish Terriers is one of Amy's best sources of prayer, renewal and fitness. Amy loves to exercise, cook, entertain, travel and "verbally process" with her therapist husband by the fire after a busy day. Rob and Amy have three adult children: fraternal twin sons, Ian and Max, who live in New York and North Carolina; and a daughter, Emma, who recently graduated from Elon University.

Rev. Nicole Chapman-Farley

Interim Associate Pastor

Rev. Nicole Chapman-Farley (she/her) has called Lake County home for almost thirty years and northern Illinois home her whole life. A child of the Catholic Church, she found her way to the PC(U.S.A.) as a young adult and soon realized she had really been Presbyterian all along.


Several years after graduating from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Industrial Design, she found herself sensing a call to ministry, borne out of her time as a youth group advisor at Wildwood Presbyterian Church in Grayslake. She graduated from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago with a Master of Divinity and has served as the Director of Youth Ministries at Winnetka Presbyterian Church, as a solo pastor at First Presbyterian Church of Waukesha, WI., and as the pastoral artist and founder of A New Creation, a collaborative arts ministry.


She is compelled by justice and equality in the ways she shows up in the world and in her ministry. Two ways she has engaged these values are as a founding member and current president of PFLAG Grayslake / Round Lake and as a founding member of the Racial Equity and Justice Task Force for the Presbytery of Milwaukee. She lives in Gurnee with her husband, Paul, and is grateful to be family to a son named Jim, a daughter-in-law named Casey, a beloved transgender former spouse named Iris, and two Whippets, named Calvin and Hobbes. Besides art, lived theology, and justice, she'll gladly have a conversation about gardens, books, podcasts, music, and movies.


Kimberly Mendoza

Pastoral Resident

Born and raised on the West Coast (Southern California and Southern Nevada), home for Kim is anywhere her loved ones are located throughout the world. Kim grew up attending and serving a Filipino-American Presbyterian Church in Henderson, NV, which started as bible study in her family's living room. After being encouraged by her mom to help lead worship and the youth group, Kim began to hear God's still, small voice calling her to a life of ministry.


Kim attended Azusa Pacific University in Southern California and graduated with a B.A. in Christian Ministries in 2019, and then went on to receive a Master's in Divinity at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Austin, TX. Kim has served primarily as a worship leader, leading people in musical worship on campus, youth mission trips, conferences, and most recently, serving on staff at Grace Presbyterian Church in Round Rock, TX. She is also passionate about community development after serving as the Texas Area Director for Next Step Ministries, a non-profit mission organization. Ultimately, Kim loves living life alongside those around her. In her free time, Kim loves to write songs, play guitar, and spend time outside running and playing sports with people. She is excited to call Lake County home!