502-452-9541 info@bpbaptist.org

Buechel Park Staff

Rev. Erica Whitaker

Senior Pastor

Erica Whitaker is a Texas native. She, along with her husband Josh and their two dogs, Fred and Lucy, came to Louisville, KY in September 2016. Before moving to Kentucky, she served as a pastoral resident at Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas, Texas.  Erica has a Master of Divinity degree from Baylor University George W. Truett Seminary and a Bachelors of Arts and Science from the University of North Texas. Erica also has five units of Clinical Pastoral Education and has served as associate pastor of several churches across Texas. Erica is a member of the EmpowerWest group of black and white pastors coming to together to empower the west end of Louisville by means of education and economic development. She is a monthly writer for Baptist News Global and is currently writing her first fantasy novel for publication. She is a passionate preacher, an avid reader, a world traveler and a lover of coffee and creation.

Rev. Sara Clarke Turpin

Associate Pastor of Spiritual Formation

Sara Turpin was born and raised in Louisville, KY and has served Buechel Park Baptist Church since 2013. She earned a Master of Divinity degree from the Baptist Seminary of Kentucky, along with a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science from Georgetown College with majors in Religion and Business Administration: Management and minors in Church Music and Psychology. She has been both a Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF) Scholar and Fellow and served on the CBF Kentucky Coordinating Council and Execitive Committee. Before coming to Buechel Park, Sara served as the Youth Minister at Melbourne Heights Baptist Church in Louisville for four years. At BPBC, she loves engaging children, youth, and their families in the stories of God and God’s people and involving people of all ages in the ministry of the church. She loves spending time with her husband, Neal and their children, Luke and Nora, as well as watching a good television comedy, playing the flute, and training for the Derby Mini Marathon each year.

VACANT – Now Hiring!

Music Director


Leigh Meers

Administrative Assistant

Leigh Meers is a native of Louisville and joined the Buechel Park Baptist Church staff in May 2014. She brings extensive experience as a conference and meeting planner/senior administrative assistant to BPBC.


Nicole Davis

Preschool Director

Nicole Davis began working as with Parents’ Day Out in May 2000 and became the director in May 2004. She graduated from Sullivan University in 2013 with an Associate of Science Degree in Early Childhood Education, the Professional Nanny Diploma, and has earned the Kentucky Early Childhood Director’s Credential Certificate. She loves working with young children and seeing the world through their eyes. Nicole serves as director of BPBC Parents’ Day Out and oversees our nursery and preschool ministry.

Kevin Adams

Pastoral Intern

Kevin Adams began serving and learning at Buechel Park in April 2019. He graduated with his Associate of Arts in Religious Studies in 2018 and his Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies from Simmons College of Kentucky, the nation’s 107th HBCU in 2019. He began his studies toward a Master of Divinity with Baptist Seminary of Kentucky in 2020. Kevin is also a devoted husband to his wife Jay Adams and a loving father to their two girls, Nyla and Aniya Adams. Kevin loves to read books and write. His passions include spending quality time with his family, cooking with his wife and being outdoors. He also loves to have fun, to laugh, and to binge watch channels like HGTV and the travel channel. Kevin enjoys growing, learning and serving with everyone in ministry.

Shelley Shumate

Music Associate



Luann Johnson


Luann Johnson was born and reared in Childersburg, Talladega County (home of the Talladega 500 and birthplace of Gomer Pyle), Alabama.  She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Montevallo (in Alabama), with a major in organ and a minor in piano, continued her education for certification to teach elementary school, and taught several years at Montevallo Elementary School before moving to Louisville in 1980.  While teaching in Louisville at Cochran Elementary and Schaffner Elementary, she received from the University of Louisville a Master of Education Degree and Rank I with an emphasis in Reading. Luann has played piano and organ at churches in Alabama and in Louisville, and for several years has been a substitute instrumentalist at Buechel Park Baptist Church.  In spring of 2020 she became the permanent pianist at Buechel Park. Luann’s daughter Elizabeth and grandson Camron live in Louisville.  Since retiring from teaching, her hobbies include reading, quilting, playing scrabble, and loving on her 5 pound rescued toy poodle, Jack Henry.


Ricco Clarkson