Meet the Staff 

Rev. Dr. John N. Vest, Lead Pastor

Pastor John’s spiritual gifts have been identified as teaching and administration and he has a great love for worship leadership and preaching. After nine years at Shady Grove UMC, he was appointed to the Virginia Cabinet in 2005 and assigned to the Portsmouth District. He served as the first Superintendent of the new James River District. John and his wife, Kathie, have 2 children: Byron, and Melanie.

Email Pastor John.

Linwood Campbell, Director of Worship and Outreach

Linwood comes to Peakland with a vast amount of experience in all types of music performance and production. Linwood worked for Roberts Piano Company as a specialist for Allen Organs, Rivermont Ave Baptist Church as organist/pianist, and most recently as music director for Thomas Road Baptist Church.   To learn more about him, visit his website:

Noemi Szigeti Lee, Piano Accompanist

Noémi was born and raised in Romania. She received her Bachelor of Music degree from the Gh. Dima Music Academy of Cluj, Romania, and her Master of Music degree in piano performance at the University of Alabama. Noémi served as the music director at Saint Thomas More Catholic Church. She currently teaches piano as an adjunct instructor at Lynchburg College and maintains an independent studio. Mrs. Lee is an active performer in Lynchburg, both as a soloist and as a chamber musician.

Rev. David Drinkard, Director of Senior Adult Minstries

Rev. Drinkard is a former Lynchburg District Superintendent and former associate at Fort Hill UMC. Rev. Drinkard helps the full-time clergy with visitation for our Homebound members. Rev. Drinkard was born and raised in Appomatox. When Rev. Drinkard isn't discussing Methodism, he can be found camping or on the golf course. Rev. Drinkard and his wife, Linda, live in Forest.

The Rev. Andrew LaBar-Dietz

Andrew is a fourth generation clergyperson and a recent graduate of Drew Theological School in Madison, NJ. He has a passion for worship, education, music, and camping ministries and loves finding new ways to intersect those fields. He is a church history nut, board game enthusiast, and spends much of his free time in a hammock. He is happily married to his wife Danielle. Email Andrew.

Cindy Harding, Business Manager

Cindy has been the Business Manager for several other local United Methodist Churches and brings over 26 years of experience with her to our staff.  She has served many pastors that we know and that have served here.  Welcome, Cindy!

Email Cindy.

Robert Armstead, Custodian

Robert's responsibilities include opening and closing the building and operating the heating/cooling equipment during the week and on Sunday mornings, and maintaining the cleanliness of the facility during the week. Robert has been Peakland's custodian since 1987.


Annie Williams, Preschool Director

Annie grew up within the walls of Peakland United Methodist Church.  She moved to Lynchburg when she was 10 and has since been active in the church.  After graduating from the University of Lynchburg with a B.S. in Marketing, she moved to Durham, NC.  Annie wore many hats as the office manager of a stationary manufacturer in Raleigh, NC.  Since she was young, Annie has always enjoyed working with children.  Ultimately, her love for children led her to teach preschool.  She worked at Grove Park Preschool in Durham, then served as a 3 year old teacher at Peakland prior to their move back to Lynchburg.


Annie and her husband, Eddie, moved back to Lynchburg to raise their children and to be close to their families. Annie and Eddie have 2 young, active boys (Owen and Walker). They spend most of their weekends on the soccer field or at swim meets.