Meet Pastor Mike Dyrdal

Pastor Mike Easter 2022

Pastor Mike Dyrdal will be our Interim Pastor through June of 2022. He is recently retired. His last appointment was Senior Pastor of Maple Grove Crosswinds United Methodist Church.

Meet Monica Basaker


As office Administrator Monica handles the day-to-day operations that include the many components of church life. Correspondence, record keeping, bulletins, newsletters, the website, and more keep her busy.

She graduated from Western Michigan University with a Marketing degree and has a business management background.

Monica lived in California for 25 years before moving to Stillwater in 2006, where she now lives with her husband David Swanson.  She has two remarkable children, Dak and Max, and many animals.  Her many outside hobbies and interests include kayaking, cycling, golfing, volunteering, hiking, and many more active sports. She loves to cook and bake for friends and family.

Meet Matthew Bader

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Matthew is the Youth Director at FIRST UNITED. He has worked with youth and young adults in United Methodist churches across the Dakotas and Minnesota for many years. Matthew’s love for working with youth came during his experiences in youth group, worship, mission trips both local and globally, camps and retreats, and service to others. He’s passionate offering these experiences for our youth and believes that everyone is always welcome.

Born and raised primarily in South Dakota, he moved to Stillwater in 2019. Matthew graduated from Dakota Wesleyan University with degrees in Christian leadership, history, and English. He’s currently a middle school teacher at a parochial school in Ramsey County.

Matthew loves to travel, watch sports, play trivia, and read while sitting in a coffee shop. He also is an invaluable member of FIRST UNITED's media team.


Meet Gaye Fisher


As Music Director Gaye helps select music for and directs the Chancel Choir and the Open Circle Praise Team. She coordinates with the Pastor on music choices for the worship service.

Gaye and her husband, Carl, moved to Minnesota in 2016 having lived in Austin, TX for 25 years. Our church was fortunate to have her join our team in 2018. She has a Masters Degree in Music Education and Performance. The congregation is benefiting from her experience in directing as she chooses a variety of styles of church music including: classical, traditional, contemporary, and "down home" gospel and soul.

It’s no surprise that attending musicals and music performances is one of her favorite activities along with travel and enjoying sports as a spectator.

Meet Kathy Hartman


Our congregation has been blessed to have Kathy Hartman as a member since 1983. She serves as Organist, Hand Bell Director and Accompanist. She leads services by providing music on the organ and piano, accompanies the choir and soloists and leads the bell choir in preparing music for church services. Her degree in music Education has been put to good use.

She and her husband Greg, also a music major, make quite a dynamic duo.

After growing up in Minot ND she moved to Minnesota in 1969. She taught in public schools for three years and has been a full time private piano teacher for many years.

She and Greg love to play pickle ball, and Kathy enjoys reading, knitting and puzzles.

Meet Pasty Bellman


Patsy was born and raised in Stillwater. She has spent much of her life working with young people in a Christian setting including camping, leading mission trips and as Youth Director in this church for a number of years. She now helps plan and oversee the Children’s Ministry program called “Faith Formation.”

Teaching and working with children has been, and still is, her passion; her degree in Elementary Education was put to use as a teacher and substitute teacher.

Camping and traveling are her favorite past-times along with reading, gardening and board games.

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