Clergy and Staff
Rev. Timothy T. Boggess
Rev. Timothy T. Boggess began his service at Northwest in June of 2008. Tim is a 1992 graduate of Princeton Theological Seminary and began his ministry as the Associate Pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Cartersville, Georgia. He served this church of 500 members until 1997 when he was called to be the solo pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Perry, Oklahoma. In 2003, Tim was called once again, this time to become the Pastor/Head of Staff at Madison Presbyterian Church in Madison, Georgia, where he served until being called by Northwest in 2008. Tim married his wife, Heather, in 1997. They have two children, Claire and Graham.
In May, 2013, Tim received his Doctor of Ministry degree from McCormick Theological Seminary.
Rev. Laura Jernigan
Rev. Laura Jernigan began as our Associate Pastor in June 2012. She oversees Christian Education and enjoys teaching, worship leadership, preaching and engaging with people of all ages. A 1988 graduate of Union Presbyterian Seminary in Virginia , she was a music major at Rhodes College . Laura served as interim pastor of Westminister Presbyterian in Charlottesville , VA and as pastor of Madison Presbyterian Church in Nashville , TN. She has been an active volunteer leader at Shallowford Presbyterian and North Decatur Presbyterian. She served on the faculty of the Lovett School in Atlanta as religion teacher and co-chaplain from 2005-2012. She and her husband John Jernigan, M.D., have three sons: Ben, Jeff and Will.
Director of Youth Ministries
Amanda began working as the Director of Youth Ministries in August 2013. She is currently enrolled full-time at Candler School of Theology at Emory University pursuing her Masters of Divinity with a certificate in Religious Education. Amanda previously worked as a Special Educator for Berkeley County Schools in SC and served as Director of Children and Youth Ministries and as Programs Director at Bethel UMC in Charleston, SC prior to moving to Atlanta to pursue her degree.
Dr. James Kohler
Director of Music
Dr. James J. Kohler is the Director of Music at Northwest Presbyterian Church (since June 2014). Dr. Kohler has a full-time position as Assistant Professor at Emory University School of Medicine in the Department of Pediatrics and is Assistant Director for Emory Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) Scientific Working Group for Viral Eradication with a research focus on HIV and antiretroviral therapy. He is a member of the American Guild of Organists and has served as a church musician/organist over the past 27 years in Methodist, Presbyterian (PCUSA) and United Church of Christ (UCC) congregations. A native of Minnesota, Dr. Kohler’s alma mater is the University of Florida (Go Gators!) where he earned his B.S. in Microbiology and Cell Sciences with a minor in Organ Performance, and his Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences. While in Florida, James sang with the Willis Bodine Chorale, the University of Florida Chorus, and Jacksonville Symphony Chorus. James currently lives in Decatur and is a member of Collegium Vocale (an Atlanta community chorus). James’ hobbies include music, reading, movies, theatre, travel and dining.
Mauro Ronca is the Organist of Northwest Presbyterian Church (since January 2017). He studied Piano, Composition, Organ and Conducting at the Conservatory in Italy and he then specialized in Vocal Accompanying at the University of Georgia (MM 2014) and the Manhattan School of Music, where he received the Harold Bauer Award in recognition of outstanding accomplishment. Recent collaborations include the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Atlanta Opera 24 Hour Opera Project, the Lyric Opera of Chicago as an assistant conductor, and the Marcus Institute for Vocal Arts at the Juilliard School. In New York City, Mauro also worked as staff accompanist and coach at the Manhattan School of Music and as a freelance pianist, harpsichordist and opera coach. He was also Director of Music at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Brooklyn. For many years Mauro has served as an organist and music director in the Catholic Church including “Santa Maria Assunta” Cathedral of Asti. While at the Cathedral, he played the inaugural recital after restoration of the “Grisanti” organ (1768).
Scott began working at Northwest in October 2007, serving as the administrative assistant. In September 2010, he was promoted to administrative manager. He received a BA from Clayton State University and Masters of Music from The North Carolina School of the Arts, where he also completed a fellowship with the A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute.