The Rev. Mark H. Pickett was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the son of a pilot in the U.S. Marine Corp. and a mother who was born in Germany. Because of his father’s military service, Mark’s family moved frequently, but his formative years were spent in Southern California and Arlington, Virginia.

​He graduated from Wakefield High School in Arlington in 1970. From there, he went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree from Duke University in 1974 as a Religion Major. He next attended Princeton Theological Seminary where he graduated with a Masters of Divinity degree in 1977.

​Mark has served as the Minister of Christian Education at the First Presbyterian Church of Ambler, 

PA; Co-Pastor of Christ Congregation (a UCC and American Baptist congregation) in Princeton, NJ; Pastor of the Norwich Congregational UCC in Norwich, VT; then, first as Co-Pastor and later as Senior Pastor of Pilgrim UCC in Durham, NC.

​Mark came to First Christian in July of 2009 but was called as the full-time pastor of First Christian in August of 2012.

​Rev. Pickett is married to Margot Trusty Pickett who is also an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ.  Margot is presently serving as the Director of the Pastoral Leadership Development Program of the Southern Conference of the UCC, an alternative track educational program that can lead to ordination in the denomination. 

​Mark grew up in the American Baptist Churches, USA and was ordained in 1977 at First Baptist Church of Washington, D.C. (Jimmy Carter’s former church). Margot grew up in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and was ordained in 1978 in her home church, Third Christian Church of Indianapolis, IN.

​Both Mark and Margot transferred their Ministerial standing to the United Church of Christ in the 1970’s. They have individually served UCC churches or related institutions for well over 35 years.