Cathy Baskin – Director of Outreach & Administration
Cathy Baskin, a native of Atlanta, GA, has traveled a long and winding road to arrive at being a staff member of RBC. She attended Furman University, a liberal arts school with a Baptist heritage, and received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from the University of GA.
She has worked in a variety of settings in the public and private sectors. Her varied roles have included: service provider for teen mothers in rural GA; educator for infants and toddlers with developmental disabilities; human resources management; preschool director; and instructional assistant in public schools. A member of RBC for 25 years, Cathy joined the staff in November, 2012, as Director of Outreach and Administration.
She resides in Springfield, VA, with her husband John, and their three sons, Jesse, Jake, and Will. She enjoys reading, music, movies, walking, and watching sports. Sometimes she feels like her household must resemble the one that produced the Marx Brothers!
She is thrilled to be able to commit her time to supporting the RBC staff and congregation, as they strive to share God’s love, work for justice, and build a loving faith community. Email Cathy.
Rev. Philip Carpenter – Minister of Music
Born in Georgia, Phil attended the University of Georgia ( Go Dawgs!) where he received his Bachelor of Music Education degree, and then the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary where he graduated with the degree of Master of Divinity/Pastoral Care and Counseling. The route between there and Ravensworth Baptist has included serving churches in Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina and Virginia as Minister of Music, a five-year stint at Pepsi-Cola (yes, I do love Diet Pepsi), and work at a number non-profits, including hospice organizations. When he’s not busy dreaming up goofy vocal warm-up exercises for choir, he can be found walking dogs in the early morning hours, riding his bike, cooking desserts that call for shocking amounts of butter, and avoiding yard work.
Phil and Russell have two sons, Jon and Joe, three dogs, assorted grand-pups, grand-cats and one never-will-they-touch grand-snake, and an open door policy for all family, friends, and travelers. You can take Phil up on this offer by emailing him!
Rev. Dr. Leah Grundset Davis- Pastor
Leah began as pastor in September 2017 in our new model of shared pastoral ministry. Before joining the staff, Leah, her husband John, and their two daughters were members at RBC as she worked at our denominational partner, the Alliance of Baptists.
Leah loves all things church– the liturgical year, preaching, building community, church history, and thinking about new ways to live out our callings to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with God.
Leah previously served as communications specialist at the Alliance of Baptists and Associate Pastor at Calvary Baptist Church, Washington, D.C. She graduated in May 2017 with a Doctor of Ministry degree from Candler School of Theology at Emory University, focused on Baptist women preaching the Magnificat, which was published as Believe the Women early 2019 by the Alliance of Baptists.
Her seminary studies were conducted at Baylor’s Truett Seminary where she received a Master of Divinity degree in 2007. Leah graduated from Baylor University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Religion.
Leah would love to get coffee with you and hear your story! Send her an email.
Gail Fewell – Ministry Assistant
The position of Ministry Assistant is only one of the hats Gail wears. She also serves as the church’s financial secretary and as the assistant treasurer of the Shepherd’s Center of Annandale-Springfield.
Gail paid her first visit to Ravensworth in May 2002, and she and Roy, her husband of 27 years, joined the church August 3, 2003, and were baptized during morning worship on April 18, 2004.
A native of Alexandria, Virginia, Gail worked for the National Education Association for 36 years, before retiring in January 2003. She has served as the Ministry Assistant at RBC since November 2006.
Gail and Roy are the parents of a daughter, Jessica, 26, as well as Roy’s daughter, Carla, who now lives in Colorado. Their granddaughter, Sarah, lives in Kansas. They became great-grandparents on March 30, 2010, with the birth of their great-granddaughter, Kathryn Rae, who they were blessed with for just a short time, as she passed away July 22, 2010. Email Gail.
Russell Gross – Accompanist
Russell is a native of Radcliff, KY, and holds a B.M. and B.M.E. from Murray State University. He has also attended the University of Louisville and George Mason University working on Masters Degrees in Clarinet Performance and Conducting. He served as clarinetist, saxophonist and pianist with the United States Navy Band, Washington, D.C. in addition to being the Enlisted Conductor for the Concert Band until retiring in 2010. He conducted the 2016 Indiana All State Band at Purdue University, and is the Conductor, Music Director and Founder of WindWorks of Washington, a professional wind band.
Performing in each of the 48 contiguous states, Russell also has performed in Sweden, Russia and Quebec. In 2008, he was a featured soloist when he performed in the opening ceremony for the Olympic events in Qingdao, the venue for the sailing competitions.
Russell just finished his 28th season with the McLean Orchestra, where he is the Principal Clarinetist. He is also a member of the Arlington Philharmonic, and the Virginia Grand Military Band. A frequent recitalist, adjudicator, clinician and private music instructor, he enjoys spending his “non music” time doing gardening, home improvement projects and taking care of his and Phil’s 3 furry “kids,” Max, Anakin and Hero. Their real sons, Jon and Joe, live in Rhode Island and Michigan, respectively, and he and Phil enjoy planning times when they can all be together.
Russell is thrilled be part of the RBC staff, and can be found playing the beautiful Steinway piano in the Sanctuary many mornings as early as 6:30am! One of his favorite quotes goes something like this… “Always shoot for the moon, if you miss, at least you’ll land among the clouds.” Email Russell.
Sara Sadler- Director of Communications
Sara is excited to be on staff at Ravensworth Baptist Church. She grew up in the Presbyterian Church (USA) in Potomac, Maryland and has lived in the DC metro area her entire life. Sara earned a Bachelor of Arts in Religion, with a minor in History from Shenandoah University in Winchester, Virginia. She is currently pursuing a Masters of Divinity from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC with the intention to be ordained. Sara and her husband, Tom, live in Falls Church with their 2 fur-children: Clark and Cayden.
In her free time, Sara loves to write, read, nap, watch documentaries and comedies. She is passionate about the local sports teams, including The Nationals, The Capitals and The Redskins! She loves to play golf and swim when the weather is nice. She has an older sister, Kyla, who is married and lives in Illinois. Her mother, Sheri, lives in Gaithersburg and is one of her biggest fans. Sara is passionate about working with youth, children and young adults as they work to discern their faith and formation in the world. Fun fact: Sara’s dad, David, was one of the founders of The Weather Channel! Email Sara.