The Rev. Thomas Hart


Tom came to New Mexico in 1989 to serve as the pastor of Cristo del Valle Presbyterian Church in Albuquerque’s South Valley.  In 1992 Tom left Cristo and cofounded the Rio Grande Brewing Company where he was head brewer and oversaw general operations.   During that time Tom served as the supply pastor for the Corona Presbyterian Church and the Jemez Springs Community Presbyterian Church.  In 1999, feeling a call to return to full-time parish ministry, Tom accepted the Associate Pastor position at Albuquerque First Presbyterian where he staffed the church’s outreach, membership, and young adult ministries.

In July of 2004, Tom became the third permanent pastor of Shepherd of the Valley Church. If asked Tom will say that God’s grace is the central pillar of his faith.  Tom’s deepest passion as a minister is nurturing faith in others by engaging them in the truth of Christ’s free and unconditional love. A storyteller by nature, Tom uses the power of personal narratives to help others experience, explore and express the love of God.  His upbringing as the son of a Presbyterian minister has given him a profound respect for our denomination’s theological sensibilities that encourage critical thinking, collaborative ministry, and social engagement.  Through various programs of worship, service, education, and outreach Tom seeks to perpetuate the congregation’s joy-filled life and witness.

Tom and his wife Dawn are the proud parents of two sons, Jack and Keelan, for whom Shepherd of the Valley is a comfortable church home.

The Reverend Sarah Chivington-Buck

The Rev. Sarah Chivington-Buck

Associate Pastor

Sarah was born and raised in Albuquerque, NM. She received her B.A. in Spanish from University of New Mexico, which included a year-long study abroad experience in Granada, Spain. She earned her M.A. in Christian Formation and Soul Care from Denver Seminary and then worked as the Director of Congregational Care at a church in Golden, CO for three years. It was during this time that Sarah discerned a call to ordained ministry. She graduated with her Master of Divinity from San Francisco Theological Seminary in 2017.  Her first call was as solo pastor of a church in rural Oklahoma. She answered the call to serve Shepherd of the Valley in 2018. It was an unexpected joy to be able to come back home to Albuquerque and be near her family, and Sarah is so grateful to be part of this vibrant and faithful church community.

She is passionate about creating meaningful experiences where people can deepen their connection with God, whether this be through worship, classes, Bible studies, or individual spiritual guidance. Sarah loves to spend her free time outdoors, near water when possible, enjoying the beauty of nature. She also likes to read historical fiction, get together with good friends, and hang out with her nephews.

Carl Boaz

Carl Boaz

Parish Associate

Carl is a retired clergy who became a Parish Associate at Shepherd of the Valley while Phil Butin was Pastor. His primary work here has been with worship and adult education. Prior to coming to Shepherd of the Valley, Carl served as Interim Pastor at eight different northern New Mexico Presbyterian Churches. He has five children, eleven grandchildren, and two great grandchildren. He is married to Laura Fox. Carl loves to sing in the choir and sometimes preaches  here and at other churches in the Presbytery.

Deborah Headshot 7

Deborah Mhoon

Director of Music

Deborah has been involved in church music most of her life.  She started playing organ for church services in rural Nebraska at age 13 where her dad was minister. She majored in sacred music at Concordia University in Seward, NE. After graduation Deborah moved to Southern California where she was Director of Music at Ascension Lutheran Church and School. Shortly after she moved to New Mexico in 2001 Deborah started playing organ, piano, and keyboard at Shepherd of the Valley, which she has continued to this day.

Jan lesslie

Jan Lesslie

Church Administrator

On a trip to California via Amtrak train through New Mexico Jan fell in love with the watermelon color of the Sandia Mountains.  She was determined to live in this beautiful state!  Her family moved here in 1988 and she has been working as Office Administrator for 10 years.

When not working, she and her husband love to travel to see their family, enjoy water sports, boating, fishing and hiking and golf.  They have 3 grown children with 5 grand-children.

Wanda Tuck

Wanda Tuck

Associate Administrator for Communications

A transplant from New England, Wanda moved to New Mexico in 2004 with her husband and daughter. For the past 15 years, she have worked in the non-profit and faith based sector as an administrative/communications assistant.

During her down time, she enjoys hanging out with her family and my two rambunctious dogs as well as going on bike rides, taking in the scenery of the area.

Shelton Caldwell

Shelton Caldwell

Program Staff

Shelton grew up at Shepherd of the Valley since attending preschool here. He enjoys working with the youth because it gives him the chance to give the kids the same positive experience of church that he had.


Cortney Yellowhorse

Program Staff

Cortney has been part of SOTV for 8 years. She started working as a youth intern and transitioned into working with the children in Godly Play. Cortney’s education background is in Social Work and she works as Therapist in and around Albuquerque. Cortney loves watching and nurturing each child’s relationship with God using Godly Play.


Jenna Brimmer

Program Staff

Jenna has been with SOTV since October of 2019. One of the things she truly enjoys in life is spending time with her husband and three dogs, going on road trips, and going to Disney. Only being at SOTV for a few short months, she has been welcomed into the church with open arms and gotten to know so many wonderful people! She enjoys her work in the nursery with the little ones and teaching the younger youth Sunday school after worship. One of her favorite parts of the church is the location near the open space. This allows for so many outdoor activities.


Carlie Capener

Program Staff

Carlie has been attending Shepherd of the Valley since she was enrolled in our preschool. Now a student a The University of New Mexico, She has been involved with the youth leadership team for just under a year. Carlie loves leading the youth of SOTV and watching their curiosity and faith grow.