Our Staff

Andrew Ruth, Pastor | andrew@oaklandpresbyterianchurch.org

Andrew was raised in Fayetteville, NC and the woods thereabout. He studied mathematics at Davidson College, while learning to minister to high school students through Young Life. He continued his ministry preparation at Duke Divinity School, before traveling to 12 countries to learn from Christians.

I get to do what I love for a living. I get to talk to people about life and Jesus and how the Scriptures narrate the intersection of the two. I get to watch Jesus use his church to transform lives, heal marriages, and break addiction. I get to witness good people convicted of sin and liberated from the bondage of self-righteousness. I get to welcome prodigals home. I’m a lucky man. I married the girl of my dreams and we have wiggly son, Jack. We love to host people and listen to good music. She still lets me fish and hunt. She believes in me, because she believes in Jesus. I’m a lucky man. God has called me to preach and teach. I’ve traveled around the world to learn how to be the church. I have seen the unforgivable forgiven; the incurable cured; and the suicidal reborn. I get to love folks who have given up on church but not on God; to make more and better disciples of Jesus. God has called me to Oakland to serve a growing community and to push us all into the deeper waters of God’s grace. I’m a lucky man, because I don’t believe it’s luck.

Keeley Tarkington, Worship Director | worship@oaklandpresbyterianchurch.org

Keeley Tarkington is a graduate from East Carolina University. Arggh! GO Pirates! She is a NC Teaching Fellow and a NC certified K-12 Music Teacher. In addition to leading worship at Oakland, she works full time at Conn Elementary Magnet School in Raleigh teaching beginning piano, percussion ensemble, choir, handbells, music technology, and recorder. She married to her best friend and high school sweetheart, Matthew Tarkington. Matthew is a graduate of NC State University and works at Cisco Systems as a Network Engineer. Together we have two West Highland Terriers: Chief and Rudy.

I grew up with a love for music and came to know the Lord early in my life. God called me to worship and leadership in my teens. I was a youth worship leader in high school at Shiloh Baptist Church and was a choir section leader and professional soloist at First Presbyterian Kinston, NC while in college. Recently, I have been helping lead worship at Church in Motion in Apex, NC.

Sarah Leonard, Office Administrator and Children Ministry Coordinator  |  secretary@oaklandpresbyterianchurch.org

I am so excited and humbled that I have been selected to take on this new role at Oakland.  One of my passions is serving others, and I know that I will have plenty of opportunity to express that passion through serving as the office administrator.  Education and training is another area that I have always felt drawn to, even if I might be scared to death to get up and talk in front of a crowd.   The expansion of this position at Oakland will include leading and guiding the children’s ministry which gives me the honor of working with our awesome Sunday school teachers, helping decide on curriculums for our children, and coordinating many of the volunteering roles and topics for our children focused programs including VBS.