Pastor Carter Cortelyou grew up in the Finger Lakes of New York where his parents still live today. His home church, where he was active in youth activities, was both Presbyterian and United Methodist. He graduated from St. Francis DeSales High School in 1982 (and to round out his religious background, his maternal grandparents were Jewish).

He graduated from the University of Michigan in 1986 and from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. in 1990 when he was ordained and welcomed into the membership of The Detroit Annual Conference.

He is the father of Jeremiah and Isaac Garrigues-Cortelyou who attend Michigan State and Oakland Universities, respectively. He married his wife Andrea on September 21, 2013.

His interests include music as a singer, bass guitarist, and dulcimer player, photography, technology, and The University of Michigan Men’s Lacrosse team. He’s also been known to play with toy trains from time to time.