Rev. Dr. Michael Lee Fitze (Mike)
Mike has spent most of his ministry involved in New Church development on all levels of the Presbyterian Church (USA). As a second career pastor, Mike served as an Elder in the Yeamans Park Presbyterian church in Hanahan before going to seminary. After graduation, Mike served the New Wappetaw church in McClellanville following Hurricane Hugo. In 1995 He was called as the organizing pastor of Providence Presbyterian in Greenville, SC. In 2007 he came back to start Palmetto. Both churches are recipients of the Walton Award for outstanding new church developments in America. Mike holds degrees from USC, The College of Charleston, and Columbia Seminary. In addition he has certificates in spirituality, master gardening, real estate and interior design. He is also a certified Stephen Ministry leader.
Active in numerous civic clubs, Mike is past president of the Charleston Jaycees and the Mt Pleasant Rotary Club among others. He serves on the staff of Charleston-Atlantic Presbytery and is on the alumni council of Columbia Seminary. Mike and His wife, Rosemary, live in Park West and are the parents of a grown daughter, Jennifer (Matt) and grandparents of Savannah (8) and Will (5).
Rev. Lissa Long
Reverend Lissa Long joined Palmetto Presbyterian first as a seminary intern, then as the part time Director for Congregational Ministries and in October as the first Associate Pastor for Palmetto Presbyterian. Lissa graduated from Presbyterian College with a major in Christian Education/Religion and a minor in Special Education. Following PC, Lissa worked with First Presbyterian Church of York, SC as their D.C.E. and later moved to Mt. Pleasant Presbyterian Church as Director for Youth and Families. It was during this time Lissa met her husband, Grahame Long, curator of history at the Charleston Museum. Lissa worked with Odyssey Hospice for eight years first in the capacity of Bereavement Coordinator and then as a chaplain. During her time with Odyssey, Lissa felt called to be ordained as Minister of Word and Sacrament and completed her Masters of Divinity. Lissa and Grahame have two girls, Macie (7) and Sumner (3).
Director of Music
Crystal is a native of Charleston, and first began working in church music at the age of 12 as the pianist of Portside Baptist Church. She graduated from USC in Journalism and later completed another degree in Church Music and Piano Performance. Through the years she has ministered in many local churches in various musical capacities, as well as serving as a Director of Youth and Children’s ministries. With her love of teaching, she has maintained a private piano studio for many years and continues to do so. Actively involved in the Charleston Music Teachers Association, she is the annual Achievement Day Co-Chairperson and a past president.
Crystal is the mother of two grown children, Summer (Jason) and Brandon, and has one grandson, Colton (1). She lives in Hanahan with her four-legged child, Scarlett, the choir and piano dog.
Commissioned Lay Pastor
Ralph Wetherell and his family have been worshiping and growing with Palmetto Presbyterian Church for over six years. He comes to us from within our congregation. Ralph has completed his Lay Pastor education requirements and has come on staff to focus on developing our men’s ministry, and small group activities. During his Lay Pastor process, Ralph felt a deeper call to gain a better insight and understanding of his faith, currently both he and his wife, Terri, are attending seminary. “I am a tent-maker, in that I have realized a thirst and passion to serve God and the church in a bigger way, but I also go to work every day to earn a living for my family; I have come to realize and enjoy that there are a large amount of folks out there who do just that. Palmetto is blessed with caring folks who live this life daily; I really love this about our church. We are a community of Christ like people who desire to serve, not because of duty, but because of a burning passion!”Ralph and his wife Terri together have four children, Taylor, Alex, Richard, and Harrison; all but Harrison are out on their own. Harrison is in high school; Ralph and Terri believe that God placed Harrison in their lives to keep them young at heart and body. Alex Dorsam, yes our own cool youth director, is Ralph’s stepson.
Alex is a proud homegrown product of Mt. Pleasant where he graduated from Wando High School. After High School, Alex attended the University closest to God's heart, Clemson. It was here he learned of his passion for Youth while working for Youth Camps and coaching club soccer. He graduated with a degree of Community Recreation, Sports, and Camp Management providing experience in goofiness and childish behavior. He also received two certifications in coaching from US Soccer as well as his Wilderness First Responder, in order to learn how to medically supervise outdoor trips and wilderness experiences. Upon graduation, God called him here to Palmetto Presbyterian Church to work with the awesome Youth of this congregation. Over the past three years, he has been very blessed to witness the growth and maturity of a unique and inspiring group of Youth.
The Administrative Assistant is the one whose voice you will hear when you call the church office. Responsibilities include general office management; all aspects of communication for keeping the church office and church family connected; database maintenance for each individual with a connection to the church, whether member, prospect, or “friend” of the church, including oversight of contribution records.
Gloria joined the staff May 1, 2007—the first day the office doors were opened. She has the pleasure of working in ministry with the many talented people at Palmetto and is also actively involved in ministry at her church (Christ Church Mt. Pleasant). She and her husband, Mike, have a grown son, two grandsons and a granddaughter to bring them joy.