2018 Nominee Biographies

STANDING COMMITTEE

Elect: 2 — one lay member and one clergy member, four year terms, term begins at end of Convention

LAY
Noreen Huey

 

CLERGY

Chip Larrimore

Deborah White

 

EXECUTIVE COUNCIL

Elect: 2 — at least 1 must be lay. Three year terms, term begins January 1, 2019

LAY

Don Miller

Jack Ryder

 

CLERGY

Todd Bryant

Merry Chan Ong

 

SECRETARY OF THE CONVENTION

Elect: 1 (lay or clergy order) for a one year term.

David Frangquist

 

TREASURER OF THE DIOCESE

Elect: 1 (lay or clergy order) for a one year term.

Brad Barber


Note: It is not the practice of the Nominations Committee to edit or correct submitted nominee biographies.

Position descriptions here.

STANDING COMMITTEE

Elect: 2 — one lay member and one clergy member, four year terms, term begins at end of Convention

 

LAY NOMINEES

Noreen Huey

St. James, San Francisco 
San Francisco Deanery

Interests:
Having raised a daughter in DioCal, I am passionate about engaging youth in church life, helping youth build relationships with one another, and finding their place in the world. I have been an advocate for creating youth ministry at St. James where I worship and Transfiguration where I work. Creativity is important to me and I have been blessed with talents in calligraphy, design and papermaking. I enjoy collaborating in designing and leading community art projects in my church communities. I love being in creation, hiking and exploring; I also enjoy art museums, and cooking for family and friends.

Professional associations:
Wedding and event calligraphy affiliation within the greater bay area network of stationers, event planners and vendors. Wedding Vendor on The Knot. Past member NCHRA (Northern California Human Resources Association) and ACA (American Compensation Association).

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
My home parish is St. James, SF (1985-) and currently serve the Transfiguration community (2009-): Leadership: Vestry twice, Personnel Committee and Family Ministry Team/Parish Life co-chair/member.  Outreach: chaired St. James’ Mothers Helping Mothers, a micro lending ministry for female entrepreneurs in developing countries. For over 20 years volunteered with Rebuilding Together. Ministry: Youth Ministry team member at St. James and Ministry Team at Transfiguration; taught Sunday school, developed curriculum; chaired St. James’ Welcoming Committee, served on flower guild at both congregations; developed and led art workshops for retreats at both parishes; provided calligraphy and design for parish events.

Major activities beyond diocese:
Owner of a calligraphy and design business providing services for weddings and events, business and social projects, working with event planners, businesses and individuals. Former Human Resources Generalist and Compensation Specialist with Sun Microsystems and CSAA. Areas of focus included employee relations, salary and benefit administration, training and development. Active parent volunteer in the local public schools (San Leandro and Redwood City) including PTA, School Site Council and Graduation Committee Co-Chair, Sequoia High School Class of 2008.

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
A need to balance our strong Episcopal traditions with being relevant and engaged in the changing culture of the Bay Area. We must build on the strong foundation of tradition and liturgy, but also be imaginative to attract newcomers and visitors. Diversity is essential to our Episcopal identity in the Bay Area. I want to be an advocate for programs that engage youth from diverse backgrounds in both congregations and the diocese. It is clear to me that we could also improve pathways and opportunities for youth to remain involved in faith communities as they become young adults.

Why are you running for this position?
My family has served this diocese for generations and my involvement is deeply meaningful to me.  I possess a unique perspective on the diversity of our diocese having experience worshiping and working in three deaneries. I grew up in a Chinese American congregation in Oakland; am an active member at St. James, SF; and for the last 9 years I have served as Parish Administrator and Operations Manager at Transfiguration, San Mateo.   Additionally, with my former career in Human Resources and strong communication skills, I will make a meaningful contribution as a member of the Standing Committee.  My Episcopal upbringing began at Church of Our Saviour, Oakland. My parents modeled community leadership there, my father was Sr. Warden and my mother was Choir Director. In my 20s I became a member at St. James, SF which is still my community today.  My husband and I raised our daughter there providing a strong foundation which lead to her youth involvement & leadership in the diocese and as Assistant Camp Director for two summers at The Bishop’s Ranch.  My father served on the Standing Committee in the 1970s and I am honored to be nominated for this position following in his footsteps.

Nominated by Warren Wong

 

CLERGY NOMINEES

Chip Larrimore

Christ Church, Sausalito
Marin Deanery

Interests:
My professional interests include liturgy (especially liturgical space and the creative use of it), ministry with youth, congregational growth, and church governance. What I love most about parish ministry are the lifelong relationships I develop with the members of my parish and the honor of marking significant moments in their lives with them. My personal interests include music of all kinds (including playing the ukulele), travel (most especially on cruise ships), sharing good food and wine with friends, and spending time with my family.

Professional associations:
Member, St. Dorothy's Rest Board of Directors; Member, Gathering of Leaders; Member, Gathering the Next Generation; Member, Marin County Fair Housing Community Advisory Group; Member, Marin City MLK Coalition; Member, Sausalito Lions Club.

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
Rector, Christ Church Sausalito (former Rector, St. Peter's Redwood City; former Associate Pastor, Grace Cathedral San Francisco): Preaching, teaching, pastoral care, congregational development, and Vestry oversight; Member, Diocese of California Deputation to General Convention 2018 (served as an alternate deputy tracking the work of the Committee on Churchwide Leadership); Member, Executive Council of the Diocese of California 2013-2016; Chair of Executive Council (2016).

Major activities beyond diocese:
I have represented our diocese as part of our diocesan deputation at 2 General Conventions of the Episcopal Church and attended 3 Conventions in total (Columbus, OH; Anaheim, CA; and Austin, TX).  While some of my work in the Diocese of California has involved representing our diocese in the wider church, my work at the present time is focused primarily on the business of our diocese.

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
Major issues facing the Church today mirror the issues facing our nation as a whole -- the fractured nature of our populous. As the Church, we must be the body that proclaims reconciliation as the mandate to which God calls us.  The Gospel of Jesus Christ calls us to honor the divine in all people -- perhaps most especially in those with whom we disagree. By attending to those relationships, we can then be a voice for the marginalized, an advocate for the disenfranchised, and a companion and helper for those who are suffering. The Episcopal Church has a rich heritage and powerful message to proclaim to a new generation of Christians and to those whom God will bring to Christ through our witness. 

Why are you running for this position?
Having now attended 3 General Conventions and served for 3 years on the Executive Council of our Diocese, I have come to appreciate how the Episcopal Church both speaks to and acts upon the needs of the world through our legislative process. It is one of the most significant ways the Holy Spirit works through us collectively as the Body of Christ in the world. I am running for Standing Committee because I believe in the work of our diocese and the vision of our Bishop for us to testify to the power of embodied justice, faith community vitality, rooted spirituality, and inclusive community.

Nominated by the Rev. Matthew Dutton-Gillett

 

 

Deborah White

Grace, Martinez
Contra Costa Deanery

Interests:
I am very interested in my family! I have two teenage children who keep both my hands and my heart occupied constantly. I share this (pre)occupation with my husband Gary and, to a lesser degree, my dog Riptide, who accompanies us wherever he can. We enjoy hiking, biking, going to the movies, reading, and listening to NPR. Gary and I also have what my daughter calls a "weird obsession" with" Jeopardy." I also retain an interest in my previous career in forensic neuropsychology, so I admit to  reading and watching some of what my kids call "creepy, non-priesty" things.

Professional associations:
I am a member of the Contra Costa Clericus and Deanery. I have had the opportunity to participate in the College of Congregational Development and am proud to be a member of the online Breaking the Episcopal Glass Ceiling group.  Outside of "church groups," I retain both my clinical psychology license and  interest in my former profession as an forensic assessment psychologist through the Rorschach Personality Assessment System group and the Society for Personality Assessment.

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
I was an active lay person in this diocese for many years and am now grateful to be the Rector of Grace Church in Martinez.  We are a medium-sized parish, so I have a hand in everything within my congregation but, strangely and despite my life-long membership in the Episcopal Church, I have the most fun doing evangelism (!)  I have been involved in the work of the diocese as part of three of DioCal's deaneries. I have served on the Executive Council, and am currently on the Diocesan Nominating Committee.  

Major activities beyond diocese:
My husband Gary was a member of the U.S. Coast Guard for 27 years, which caused us to move frequently. As a result, although I have never been formally involved in the General Convention, I have served on vestries in parishes in Maryland and Massachusetts, in church leadership in Virginia, and as a diocesan representative in Massachusetts. As a sacristan at Trinity College in Connecticut, I was one of the diocesan representatives at the visit of Archbishop Desmond Tutu (way back when).

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
We are living in frightening and dangerous times which can lead either to great evil - or, if we get it right, to hearts and minds transformed by the life-giving and soul-sustaining love of Jesus Christ. There are so many specific concerns that we have not adequately engaged as a Christian community - among others; racism, sexism, poverty, socioeconomic disparity, and, fear of "the other" - that it seems impossible to determine which is most pressing. I believe, however, that none of these can be reasonably responded to without knowing who we are as a people. As scary as it seems, we have been given a gift - the chance to commit to actually trying to live the message and way of Jesus. The work that needs to be done to heal and reform a world lacking in compassion and mercy begins with personal and collective examination of what it means to be a community of Christ and how we can be productive workers in the world's mission field, identifying and acting in concrete ways to bring healing to a world in desperate need of it. 

Why are you running for this position?
I became familiar with Episcopal polity as a child with parents who served on search committees and vestries. Although I recognize that the structure of the church is sometimes unwieldy, I also think it is a tremendous and often unappreciated gift. Our denomination not only allows but encourages each of us to find our unique place in the community of Christ - whatever it may be - and to grow with grace into our various vocations. As someone who has gone through the ordination process in this diocese, I have benefited enormously from the opportunity to pray and discern alongside other Christians about both incredibly personal and universally important questions. Members of the Standing Committee serve a crucial function within the diocesan structure not only as leaders themselves, but also by faithfully considering and offering counsel to others tasked with the spiritual and practical leadership of its people. It is my hope that my many experiences as a lay and ordained person within the church and my skills working with groups and individuals with significant concerns will be of benefit to the committee and the diocese. 

Nominated by Brenda Paulin


EXECUTIVE COUNCIL

Elect: 2 — at least 1 must be lay. Three year terms, term begins January 1, 2019

 

LAY NOMINEES

Don Miller

St. Clement's, Berkeley
Alameda Deanery

Interests:
Travel, cooking, photography, gardening and sports (Warriors, Giants, 49ers). Big fan of UC sports teams. Hunger, food insecurity, alleviating homelessness and promoting economic empowerment.

Professional associations:
Alameda County Community Food Bank - Development Operations and Database Manager.  Lead team supporting the ACCFB's development department and oversee ACCFB's fundraising database.   

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
St. Clement's Episcopal Church: Currently serving second three-year term on Vestry at St. Clement's Episcopal Church in Berkeley as Outreach Chair. Lead committee as we increase activities addressing hunger, homelessness, education, the environment and animal welfare (2014-2017; 2018 - present). Alameda Deanery: Served on hunger ministry committee resulting in documentary covering hunger in East Bay and church-sponsored food pantries, such as St. Augustine's and St. John's, in Oakland (2012-2013).

Major activities beyond diocese:
Volunteerism:  - Options Recovery Services (drug rehabilitation) - Upwardly Global (economic empowerment - assisting immigrants and refugees with job hunting skills) -  Rise Against Hunger (international food aid) - Volunteered 270+ hours over past three years, with  agencies addressing issues ranging from health care and hunger to social services and the environment) 

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
1) Declining attendance, especially among families, presenting a major obstacle to growth   2) Financial constraints facing congregations limiting outreach potential, especially in the Bay Area where costs continue to increase  3) Reduced ability for congregations to assist as many of those in need as we would like, due to decreased revenues and membership  

Why are you running for this position?
I am seeking to utilize my experience to make the Diocese stronger now and in the future, as a member of the Executive Council.  My qualifications include 30+ years of experience in both the private and non-profit sectors, in finance and operations, at successful and diverse organizations.     Being heavily involved in my parish has given me an understanding of the issues facing many of the congregations in our Diocese.   This includes reviewing financial issues and collaborating on long range planning.  As a  Bay Area native who grew up in Berkeley, I am passionate about working in our community to end problems facing those who live here, regardless of their background, race or ethnicity, to the best of my ability.  I seek your vote so I can contribute to the future of the Diocese on the Executive Council.

Nominated by the Rev. Deborah White

 

Jack Ryder

Grace Cathedral, San Francisco
San Francisco Deanery

Interests:
birds | hiking | history | @landmarkssf | Napa | opera | pipe organs | @ryderrealestate | San Francisco | @statelysf

Professional associations:
Volunteer Experience: President - Toastmasters International, San Francisco Association of Realtors Chapter   Board Candidate, Education Chair | Member: Global Business Council, Government Relations - San Francisco Association of REALTORS  Member, Advisory Board - The Paideia Institute for Humanistic Study  Member, Donor Engagement Committee - Grace Cathedral  Historian - St. Andrew's Society of San Francisco  Events Committee - British Benevolent Society of San Francisco  Member - Royal Oak Foundation, Sir John Soane Foundation, Conservatory of Flowers, SF Botanical Garden Society, Fine Arts Museums of SF, CA Academy of Sciences  

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
Sponsor, Pipe Organ Recital Series Member, Donor Engagement Committee

Major activities beyond diocese:
When I'm not selling real estate, or birding, I serve on the committees/boards listed above. 

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
Personally, I am thrilled that the Episcopal Diocese has chosen to tackle the issue of Climate Change. I believe it is the most important issue of our time.

Why are you running for this position?
I love Grace Cathedral, the work we do in the community, as well as our music and Forum ministry. I'd like to participate in a leadership role in order to ensure their continued success.

Nominated by the Rev. Chip Larrimore

 

CLERGY NOMINEES

Todd Bryant

St. Timothy's, Danville
Contra Costa Deanery

Interests:
I am an avid reader of history. Doing dishes while listening to a bevy of podcasts is my daily practice. We are fairly new to California, so the Bryant family 5 are hiking, biking, ferrying, and BARTing our way around the Bay Area. I spend my Sabbath time with the family, and am committed to health through yoga.  My spouse, Kimberly and I are delighted to embark on our new chapter of life in California together.

Professional associations:
I am a member of the Contra Costa Deanery. I was the Dean of Clericus in the Diocese of Texas – a clergy professional development group. Academically, I was a Phi Beta Kappa scholar during college and an FTE fellow in seminary. Was a partner in mission with the “Dulac Community Center” in Houma, LA. I was a member of a preaching formation group (Deep calls to Deep) at Virginia Theological Seminary. Served as a board member for a helping agency called WHAM (West Houston Assistance Ministries).

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
I started as a curate and stayed as the Associate Rector of a suburban church near the Texas gulf coast (ASA 225). I also served as the Associate Rector in an urban church (ASA 500). I began as Rector at my previous parish with an ASA of 125, and when I left the ASA was 175. I am deeply committed St. Timothy’s vitality within the church and I am committed to advocacy and social justice. It has been a joy to be part of St. Timothy’s especially during our outreach fundraisers involving the whole community.

Major activities beyond diocese:
I am not currently involved in provincial or national ministry. However, God willing, I would serve at either level.

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
Vision and evangelism -- I have a desire to support the beloved community and Bishop Marc’s leadership. We need more Episcopalians to do this! A core value of the Diocese of California is ‘church vitality.’ I believe my gifts and passion for evangelism and incorporation support this plank of the beloved community. As we grow, our voice will have even more traction in advocacy and inclusion.  God is asking more of our leadership than just waiting for people to check us out. Praying to make budget next year does not make a strategic plan. Episcopalians are great at “come and see” relationship building, but in the changing landscape of America it's not enough for the future. The average Episcopalian invites someone to church once every 37 years. Personally, I don’t have some special gift except a driving passion to see us thrive. Sometimes Episcopalians call evangelism the “e” word. But we have the tools and the ability to define evangelism on our own terms. Using social media, community engagement, and personal invite, we can be evangelists. If you have ever recommended your favorite restaurant to someone, you have all the tools you need to be an evangelist.

Why are you running for this position?
I currently have the pleasure of serving at St. Timothy’s in Danville. If I am elected to Executive Council, I will commit myself to the Diocese of California and support the beloved community. I will serve in the capacity that will most strongly support the work of the Diocese. I have a passion for strategic planning and evangelism and work well in leadership groups. I would consider it an honor to help move the Diocese into an even brighter future.  I will support our diocese and when appropriate, advocate for strategic funding of missional initiatives meant to draw people to the “The Episcopal Branch of the Jesus Movement.” It would be an honor to do whatever is needed for us to thrive. 

Nominated by Mike Oliver

 

Merry Chan Ong

Our Saviour, Oakland
Alameda Deanery

Interests:
Professional: serving the Diocese, serving my church, furthering our multicultural goals, the Episcopal Liturgy, sacrament, pastoral care, preaching, teaching, and program creation.  I have a passion for helping people of all ages: children, young people, adults and seniors, setting up goals, plans, policies and decisions making. Personal: Community Organizer, Administration stuff, Singing, playing piano, teaching choir, swimming, table tennis. 

Professional associations:
1.)ACDC(Asian Commission for the Diocese of California)-2 years (2014 - 2016) 2.)Chinese Convocation Convener (2016 - present) EAM (Episcopal Asiamerica Ministry) Vice President, 2016 to the present 3.) Deanery of Alameda 4.) 1st Alternate Deputy at the 2015 General Convention 5.) Deputy at the 2018 General Convention  6.) PB Appointment to the Task Force on Clergy Leadership Formation in Small Churches, for General Convention 2018 7.) Serve at Commission of Ministry (2016 - present) 

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
1.) Rector of Our Saviour, Oakland 2.) Adviser of Oakland Chinatown Jubilee Community Center 3.) Director and Founder of Our Saviour ESL (English As Second Language) Program, Tai Chi Class, Citizenship Class & Translation Class 4.) I worked across multiple cultures as a North of Market Area Missioner here in our diocese, in 2011. 5.) Bishop’s Appointee, Executive Council (2011-2014) 6.) Joint Ministry with Oakland Episcopal neighborhood churches,  Food Pantry@ St. James, every Wednesday 7.) 1st Alternate Deputy to the General Convention (2015) 8.) Deputy to the General Convention (2018) 

Major activities beyond diocese:
1.) Advisory Asian Committee for Criminal - work with Oakland Police Department 2.) World Anglican Chinese Clergy Fellowship - Networking person for Northern America (2016 - 2020) 3.) Episcopal Asiamerica Ministry Chinese Convocation Convener (2016 up to the present) 4.) Episcopal Asimmetrica Ministry Vice President (2017 - present)

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
1.) Shrinking congregations and church attendance, lack of young people. 2.) Financial stresses. 3.) A general societal drift away from religion. 

Why are you running for this position?
To satisfy my calling, I need to serve the Diocese as well as my church.  I believe I have unique abilities and experiences that allow me to make a contributions: at the same time, I want to learn more our diocese’s implementation of strategies, plans, policies and decisions consistent with the organization Vision, Mission, Guiding Principles. 1.) Multicultural: I am familiar with the needs, differences, and sensitivities of different cultures. The different approaches to their needs. 2.) Professional: I have two Masters Degrees, one in Education and one in Divinity. I want to utilize my educational knowledge to help in the implementation of plans and policies.  I was a Principal of a large private Christian school in the Philippines, and responsible for over 900 students 40 staff.  I have skills and experiences in resolving the differences of groups with varying perspectives, such as school board of trustees, parents, teachers, and children, most of all the finance section, I want to offer my cross-culture experiences. I have the Bachelor of Science in Business administration and master of education in management. 

Nominated by the Rev. Michael Barham


SECRETARY OF THE CONVENTION

Elect: 1 (lay or clergy order) for a one year term.

 

David Frangquist

St. Aidan's, San Francisco
San Francisco Deanery

Interests:
History, computers and communications, Christian vocation, parliamentary law, labyrinth design, grandchildren.

Professional associations:
Association for Computing Machinery (ACM).

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
Secretary of the Convention 2007-2018, Executive Council 2009-2018, Committee on Dispatch of Business 2007-2018, Committee on Governance 2010-2012, Standing Committee class of 2008 (Secretary 2006, Vice President 2008), Diocesan Council 2002-2004, Pacific Church News Advisory Board 2002-2005, presenter at Diocesan Ministry Conferences (vocations track), Convention Delegate (since 1998), Vestry (4 times), Parish Treasurer/Clerk, Congregation Vocations Committee, Senior Warden, Rector Search Committee, labyrinth builder, thespian, Mother Superior (St. Dymphna’s).

Major activities beyond diocese:
Carleton College Alumni Association, Colorado River runner, grandpa.

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
Reinventing Church to present the Gospel of Christ in new and relevant ways. As our society becomes increasingly polarized and many people associate Christianity with only one side of the political divide, we need to broadcast that we are a different kind of Christianity, truly concerned with justice and compassion.  We need to convey the relevance of Christian community and corporate action to a society where religion has become private and personal for many people.  We need to communicate our true excitement about Christ to a skeptical people.  At the same time, we need to find new ways to use our resources effectively and mobilize the power of the Holy Spirit embodied in all our members.

Why are you running for this position?
I was first called to this work when the Rev. Channing Smith asked me to run after I had served as Secretary of Standing Committee and led the organization of the Special Convention that elected Bishop Marc.  I have found the work to be interesting and rewarding, especially the opportunity to work with Bishop Marc, Treasurer Bob McCaskill and all the members of Executive Council.  Having outlasted Bob, I am apparently still called to serve one more year.  There is a successor waiting in the wings who has agreed to run next year.

Nominated by Diane FitzGibbon


TREASURER OF THE DIOCESE

Elect: 1 (lay or clergy order) for a one year term.

 

Brad Barber

St. Stephen's, Orinda
Contra Costa Deanery

Interests:
Having retired, I thought I would be able to devote my time to travel, walking in the Bay Area and reading California, American and British history. Instead, I have become involved on several church, university and other non-profit, educational and community boards. That must mean those are my interests! I also find time to travel, read, walk and spend time with my family.

Professional associations:
California Bar Association (inactive).

Summary of activities within my congregation / diocese:
I have served on the Vestry on three occasions and currently serve on the Investment and Capital Campaign Steering Committees of the parish. Previously, I served on the Finance and chaired the Planned Giving Committee and Rector Search Committees. I am a Eucharistic Visitor, Lay Reader and started the ministry of Morning Prayer at St Stephen's. I have been a delegate from St Stephen's to the Deanery and to the Convention. I currently serve on the Executive Council and the Finance and Investment Committees of the Diocese. 

Major activities beyond diocese:
At the University of California at Berkeley I am currently the Chair of the Bancroft Library and serve on the boards of the Institute of Governmental Studies, the Center for Civility and Democratic Engagement, the Anglo-American Studies Program, the Canadian Studies Program and the University Library. I am a Regent of Samuel Merritt University and serve on an advisory board to the National Academies of Science in Washington, DC. I am finishing my term as President of the Moraga-Orinda Fire District. I belong to the Order of St John of Jerusalem and other service organizations.

In my opinion the major issues facing the church today are:
Stretched operating budgets at the Diocesan level and among congregations. Deferred maintenance. Inadequate endowments. Clergy compensation and housing. Declining attendance is a concern in many congregations.

Why are you running for this position?
It is an opportunity for me to serve the church in an area in which I have experience and to pay it back for all it has given me and my family over the years.

Nominated by the Rev. Thomas Jackson