Our Staff

The staff of First UMC of Lutz is here to help equip, teach, nurture, and minister to our church family at all times. If there is any way that we can serve you better, please contact us directly at 813-949-1751. You may also contact us via email. Thank you for the privilege of serving you each and every day.


Pastor Rick was appointed to serve First Lutz as the Senior Pastor in June of 1998. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Theological and Historical Studies with Minors in Psychology and Spanish. He also has a MA in Biblical Studies and a Master of Divinity Degree. Pastor Rick had a dynamic encounter with Christ about half way through college when he met Vicki, the woman who became his wife. She was a Christian and he was not. Later, after committing his life to Christ, the Lord brought him and Vicki together for a lifetime of service. Pastor Rick still refers to Vicki as his bride and says she always makes him look more than twice as good as he is. They were married in 1973 and have two grown children and four grandchildren.
Pastor Rick has a passion to see people experience the joy of knowing Christ and of growing into a closer relationship with Him. The years of ministry in Lutz have been a great challenge and a great privilege. He and Vicki have found much fulfillment serving the Lord in Lutz. “First Lutz is a great place for anyone to serve Christ, whether you are a pastor or a lay person”, he says. Then he adds, “Wherever God wants you to be is the best place for you.”
You don’t have to be around them much to know that they are still greatly in love with each other, and with their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Vicki Apple – Church Administrator – x221  vicki@fantasticfirst.org

Vicki has been a member since Aug. 1999. She came on staff in March, 2001. As our administrator, she handles or coordinates most of the business matters of the church, including bookkeeping, operations, and IT. She also serves on the Finance Committee and Church Council and volunteers in handbells, and Christian education.
Vicki has a B.A.from USF in Political Science (pre-law), and an MBA from Southeastern University, in Lakeland, FL.
Calling: “When I was young, I wanted to be a missionary, then I grew up and was distracted by the world. I spent too many years turned away from God, and yet to my delight He never turned away from me. When I returned to Him, He was waiting for me, and to my shock, called me to serve this pastor and this congregation. Lutz has been my home since 1987, and my mission field since 2001. Handbells are my passion! If you’d like to give it a try, please don’t be shy. We rehearse on most Tuesdays at 7 PM.”

Vicki Cabot – Office Assistant – x222 vickic@fantasticfirst.org

Vicki and her family joined the church in June of 1998. Born and raised in Tampa, she accepted Jesus into her heart when she was 6 yrs old. She came on staff in 1999. You can see her love for the Lord in all she does for those who enter our doors.
Vicki and Rev. Rick Cabot were married in 1973. They have two adult children; John-Michael and Missy; and four adorable grandchildren, Maddie, Jayden, Elliana and Emmalyn.
Calling: “I consider it a high privilege to be a pastor’s wife. With God’s help, it is my desire to be the best Pastor’s wife I can be. I love the Lord with all of my heart, and I would love to see everyone in a deep, committed relationship with Him. The joy and comfort that He brings is worth everything!”

Austin Curry, II – Assistant Worship Leader – austin@fantasticfirst.org

Austin and his very musical family have been attending and serving here since 1998!  Austin officially joined our staff in January 2018.  He leads the praise band and tech team with great talent and skill. He’s a hard worker and has a great sense of humor!
When you see the Currys in action, you’re likely to conjure images of the Partridge Family.  His son and daughter grew up playing and singing on our stage. He recently became granddad to Austin, IV. We can’t wait to see what that little guy is going to want to play!

Janell Lockhart – Christian Education Director – x234  janell@fantasticfirst.org

Janell and her family joined our church in the summer of ’99. In July of 2008, Janell left the corporate world and accepted the position as Youth Director here at First Lutz. In Nov. 2014, she was promoted to Christian Education Director. Her organization skills and desire to help people of all ages deepen their walk with Christ, make her especially equipped for this position.
Janell also believes in being Servant-minded. Volunteering at the local food pantry and clothes closet or handing out peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, coffee and blankets to the homeless impacts the world around us.
Janell has a BA in Marketing from the University of South Florida, and has 22 years of experience in Human Resources. Janell completed the intense Youth program from the Youth Ministry Institute in 2012.
Janell married her high school sweetheart, John, the week following their graduation from the University of South Florida in 1986.

Cliff Longcoy – Worship Arts Director – cliff@fantasticfirst.org

Classical pianist Cliff Longcoy made his debut in the world performing at charity concerts and various local churches throughout his teenage years. He made his national debut placing second in America’s teen talent competition.
Cliff made his concerto debut with the Florida orchestra at 17 as part of their young artist competition. Shortly after, he performed with the USF orchestra and with the Bergen Philharmonic. He has been a loved visitor in Norway every year since.
At the age of 19, Cliff made his first concert tour in Japan, playing at churches and universities throughout Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka. Other countries he has performed in include Luxembourg, France, Norway, Germany, and England. Some notable halls include King Georges Hall in London, Berliner Philharmonie, the Bergen Hall in Norway, and the Mahaffey Theater, Ruth Eckerd Hall, and Stratz Center in Tampa.
In addition to performing solo classical and Christian concerts, Cliff Longcoy has played with and accompanied world-renown bands such as Celtic Woman and Andrea Bocelli.
Cliff received his piano degree from University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida where he resides today.
We are so fortunate to have the talented Cliff Longcoy on our staff. In addition to being a world-class concert pianist, he loves Jesus and is a huge blessing to our church.

Susan Lyons – Nursery Coordinator


Matt Sargent – Youth Director – x230 matt@fantasticfirst.org

Matt started with us in March, 2018, after serving churches up north for 21 years. He and his wife, Staci have four awesome kids, Maegan, Ben, Sophie, and Gabe.  His passion in youth ministry is to challenge, excite, and motivate students to “raise the bar” in their walk with God, by “stepping out of their boat”, and realizing that “with God, nothing is impossible.”  He calls it making Champions for Christ!  His Calling:  “It was when I attended a new youth group my Junior year in High school, with kids that were authentic and were excited about their relationship with Jesus, that I received Christ as my Lord and Savior. Shortly after, I knew God was calling me to full-time ministry. I attended Liberty University, where I received my B.S. in communication, with a youth ministry minor.