"From Dreaming To Becoming"
Cat Holbert, Desert Southwest Conference


In 2002, Cat Holbert had just finished a seasonal position at Westview on the James, a United Methodist Camp in Virginia. She was sitting at her new job in a local church pondering the question, “Where do you see yourself in five years?” The only answer that came to her was, “I see myself at camp full-time.” It was less than a year later when Cat found herself back at Westview; this time, in year-round ministry. She was still young and trying to find her confidence in this place that she felt called to.

It was her time in UMCRM’s original Certification Program, “Common Ground” at Drew Seminary, that began the growth of confidence and leadership within Cat. She admits, “I still have the five-inch binder from the courses, but what was most impactful long term were the relationships that I built.”

While attending the certification courses, Cat met folks like David Berkey, who would one day hire her as Director at Lazy W Ranch in California, and Kevin Witt, who invited her to lead a workshop at the National Gathering. When Kevin first encouraged her to get involved with the National Gathering, she was nervous, but she stepped up. “This leader that I respect saw potential in me and that inspired me. I realized that I had something to bring to the table.” Flash forward several years, Cat went from workshop leader to becoming the Design Team Chair of the whole National Gathering.

Through UMCRM she has met many friends and colleagues who supported her as a growing leader. Cat began her journey in this ministry dreaming of a future in camp ministry leadership. Because of the relationships that she built through UMCRM, she now has become a gifted Camp and Retreat Executive overseeing multiple ministry locations, and mentoring a new generation of young leaders.