Pastors & Staff


Interim Pastor

Most Recently, Joanne served as Pastor for Brockport’s American Baptist Church for ten years .
Joanne has a small counseling practice at Greece Baptist, Listening Studio.  Prior to her years at Brockport, she served as Associate Pastor at the First Baptist Church of Rochester, and as Interim Pastor at Penfield Baptist and Baptist Temple. 
She also served as the Interim Executive Minister of the Rochester Genesee Region. 
She holds two Masters Degrees and additional credentialing in Grief and Substance Abuse Counseling. She is an experienced Hospice Chaplain and credentialed in Myers-Briggs Personality Inventory.
Joanne is married to James Cannon (retired teacher) who currently works for RIT as a Wrestling Coach and Diversity Advisor to the Athletic Department.
Joanne and her husband have four adult children and three adorable grandchildren.
Joanne likes to paint, collage, sew, swim, and bake ... and laughs often with her two dogs.


Organist and Pianist

Born in Chengdu, China to a music family, pianist Chen Liang started his piano study at age of five with Cai Ying, professor at Sichuan Conservatory of Music in China. At a very young age, he won many prizes in several municipal and provincial competitions. At the age of twelve, he began to study with Professor Zheng Daxin. In 2007, when he was 16, Chen won the first prize of his group in the 3rd Lira International Piano competition in St. Petersburg, Russia. Since then Chen has performed all over the world. In 2008, impressed by his performance for the Japanese and German friendship delegators, Chen was selected by the Chinese government to visit Japan following the Chinese president Hu Jintao’s state visit to Tokyo. In 2010, after giving up the opportunities to go to Peking and Tsing Hua University, the top universities in China, Chen decided to go to Sichuan Conservatory of Music, and to study piano professionally with Professor Zeng ’Ai. In 2011, Chen was chosen to go to the “Prestissimo” International Chamber Music Festival in Pennsylvania and in 2012 he won the 3rd prize in the “Imola” International Piano Competition in China. Chen has been to several music festivals such as “Imola” International Piano Festival in Italy (2012), Piano Texas in USA (2013, 2017), Summer Academy of Mozarteum in Austria (2014) and Chautauqua Music Festival piano program (2015, 2017, 2018). Chen is the winner of the Big Arts Classical Music Scholarship Competition in 2015 and Lynn Concerto Competition in 2014, he also won the 5th prize of the Piano Texas Concerto Competition in 2017 and the honorable mention of Florida state MTNA young artist competition in 2015. Besides playing the piano, Chen is also interested in composition and teaching. His works have been played around the world and he is now a recipient of the Advanced Certificate for Community Teaching by Eastman School of Music.  

As a high school student, his friends invited him to play piano for Christian worship services. He has played for Episcopal, Lutheran, and Jewish services in the U.S.
Chen continues doctoral studies in piano performance and literature at Eastman. 


Administrative Assistant 

Briana Hanson was born and raised in Rochester, NY and is a longtime member of the United Church of Pittsford. She graduated from Nazareth College with a B.A. in Communication and Media and Spanish. Briana has worked on social media for the Coffee Connection, United Church of Pittsford, and Nazareth College Arts Center, where she also wrote an article for The Empty Closet magazine. She enjoys when her work is rooted in writing, editing, and content creation because she is passionate about telling stories

When she’s not in the office you can usually find Briana camping, taking photos, or eating ice cream. Maybe even taking photos of ice cream while camping.


Director of the United Choir

Dot Borden recently came back from retirement to work with the United Choir.
She served as Choir Director at the United Church of Pittsford from 1979 to 1999, having been organist and/or choir director at the Honeoye Falls United Methodist Church for 15 years prior to that. She directed the Bell Choir at UCP from 1987 to 2016.
Dot was also the piano accompanist for the Honeoye Falls-Lima School District for 20 years. A preacher’s kid, she grew up in the Mohawk Valley of New York State. She graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Music Education.
Dot has four children and 6 grandchildren, all of whom are musicians.