Clergy and Staff
The Very Rev. Dr. Donald G. Brown, Interim Rector
|A native of Eureka CA, Don is a graduate of Willamette University, Salem OR; the Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge MA; and the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, Berkeley CA. He was a curate at St. Paul’s, Salem OR; associate rector, Christ Church, Lake Oswego OR; rector of St. Stephen’s, Longview WA; and Dean of Trinity Cathedral, Sacramento CA. Upon his retirement in 2005, he became Dean Emeritus of Trinity Cathedral. Don’s 45 years of ordained ministry include leadership positions at every level of The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion. This coming June will mark Don’s 7th year of participating as a cyclist in the SF Aids Foundation Life Cycle fundraising ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles. Don and his wife Carol Anne reside in Berkeley and they have two adult children, Kevin of Berlin, Germany, and Meredith & her husband Jesse and their daughter Martha Anne of Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island. Email: email@example.com – Phone: 415.921.3665 x306|
The Very Rev. Hollinshead T. “Lin” Knight, Interim Rector, Assisting Priest
|The Very Rev. Hollinshead T. “Lin” Knight is returning to St. Mary’s after serving as the interim rector at St. Mary’s in 2011-2012. Lin is a graduate of the Episcopal Academy and Yale University where he sang in the Whiffenpoofs of 1956. He served three years in the Navy as an air intelligence officer on two aircraft carriers. Lin graduated from the Episcopal Theological School in Cambridge, MA in 1962. His first ordained position was with three small missions in southern Idaho. He served as associate rector at St. Luke’s in San Francisco from 1964-1973. From there he became vicar and first rector at St. Aidan’s, San Francisco, 1973-1984. From St. Aidan’s he was called as Dean of St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Honolulu where he served from 1984-1995. After retiring from the cathedral he and his wife Ann became directors of Ring Lake Ranch retreat and conference center, Dubois, Wyoming, 1994-1998.
In ‘retirement’, Lin has had 12 interim positions, including parishes in Daly City, San Mateo and Belmont CA and interim positions in Jackson Hole, WY, Portland, Salem and Florence, OR. He was also Interim Deployment Officer, Diocese of Oregon, 2008-2010. Lin and Ann returned home to San Francisco in 2015 and are now living in their “view with a room” in Sausalito. Lin and Ann have been married for almost 43 years. They have 5 adult children and 7 grand-children.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org – Phone: 415.921.3665 x383
The Rev. Paula D. Nesbitt, PhD, Assisting Priest
|The Rev. Paula D. Nesbitt, PhD, comes to St. Mary the Virgin from Berkeley, where she has been an assisting priest at All Souls Parish and a visiting scholar at the Graduate Theological Union for several years. She has taught at the University of California Berkeley, the University of Denver, and courses at three seminaries, while concurrently involved in parish ministry. She currently serves on the International Anglican Women’s Network Steering Group and the Episcopal Church’s General Board of Examining Chaplains. Having worked with the Anglican Communion Office’s Continuing Indaba project for several years, in 2016 she led a summer and autumn session on spiritual listening with indaba at St. Mary the Virgin. She has authored or edited several books, chapters, and articles. Prior to ordination, she had worked in corporate communications and public relations. Her M.Div. and PhD are from Harvard. Paula and her husband, Kirk Miller reside in Berkeley.
Email: email@example.com – Phone: 415.921.3665 x384
The Rev. Tim Smith, Deacon
|Tim joined St. Mary the Virgin as deacon in June 2015 after graduation from School of Deacons in Berkeley in May and ordination at Grace Cathedral in June. Tim and his wife Ilia have been active parishioners at St. Mary the Virgin for over 36 years including his time at School for Deacons. Their son was baptized and confirmed there. A former attorney, risk management consultant, and insurance broker, Tim retired in 2012 and immediately entered School for Deacons. He feels that God has called him to a servant ministry in Jesus’ name. In particular, he feels called to serve as a deacon whose role is interpreting to the Church the needs, concerns, and hopes of the world, facilitating, encouraging, and motivating sisters and brothers in Christ to live out their baptismal vows, and serving and ministering with others particularly the marginalized outside the walls of the church. His educational background includes an undergraduate degree from Princeton University, graduate degrees in law and business from Columbia University, a Fulbright Scholarship in Germany, and a bachelor’s degree in diaconal studies from School for Deacons in Berkeley.
email: firstname.lastname@example.org – Phone: 415.921.3665 x352
The Rev. Nancy Bryan, Deacon
|Nancy attended the University of California at Berkeley where she majored in Art History. She and her husband became active at St. Mary’s over 40 years ago, where all three of their children were baptized and attended Sunday School. Nancy helped to create the original “Friendly Visitors” for seniors. Nancy obtained a Bachelor of Theological Studies at the School for Deacons in Berkeley and was ordained at Grace Cathedral in December of 2005. Nancy served in a number of ministries around the Bay Area following her ordination and returned to St. Mary’s in 2009. She currently coordinates the Pastoral Care Team and takes communion to communities around the city.
email: email@example.com – Phone 415.921.3665 x364
Natalie Hala, Parish Verger and Liturgist
|Natalie was commissioned to serve as the verger of St. Mary the Virgin in 2014 after being recognized as the 282nd Fellow of The Verger’s Guild of the Episcopal Church at ceremonies in Burlington, Ontario, Canada upon completing intensive study of the Verger’s Guild. Natalie has the distinction of being the first fellow in the Diocese of California and only the second in the state of California at the time of her commissioning. She is among over 1,500 Guild vergers in Episcopal and Anglican communities throughout the world who have answered a call to the lay ministry of verger providing assistance and support in liturgy and worship allowing ordained clergy more time to focus on pastoral and sacramental responsibilities. Natalie views herself as the people’s representative in the planning and implementation of worship at St. Mary’s. Her goal as verger and liturgist is to continue to strengthen of the spiritual dimension of worship at St. Mary’s, reliving and revisiting the life of Jesus and broadening the life of the church through Christ beyond our courtyard walls. Natalie is a graduate of Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa and holds a masters degree in the history of art and architecture from the University of Kansas. Natalie and her spouse, David Crosson, have been active members of St. Mary’s since 2006
email: firstname.lastname@example.org – Phone 415.921.3665 x314
Eric Choate, Interim Director of Music
|Eric Choate is a composer, conductor, pianist, and organist with a deep fervor for sacred music and liturgy. Born of a Presbyterian minister, he grew up with church music and an insatiable curiosity for theology and liturgy. It seems only natural that he would one day travel to the Iona Community in Scotland to absorb ideas for creative worship, as well as attend St. Olaf College to bask in their rich tradition of sacred music (and to be closer to God). Eric’s work as a composer has been praised by Examiner.com as “music to grab the listener’s attention through novelty and hold it through technical discipline.” He has several awards to his name, and is a very active composer, having written for Areon Flutes, One Great City Duo, and many others. As a conductor, Eric has been lauded by San Francisco Classical Voice for leading with a “nice, light hand.” Currently, he is Director of the Conservatory Chorus at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and Assistant Conductor for the Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra. Graduating with Departmental Distinction, Eric earned his Bachelor of Arts in Composition from St. Olaf College, where he studied with Timothy Mahr and Justin Merritt. He was awarded a fellowship to study harmony and counterpoint at the European American Musical Alliance in Paris, France. He then went on to earn a Master of Music with David Conte at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Eric’s first composition was performed at his alma mater St. Olaf College. Here is the link so you can view the performance.
Eric can be reached at email@example.com or 415.921.3665 x363.
Marla Perkins – Interim Children’s Choir Director – firstname.lastname@example.org
Nancy Clark, Director of Sunday School grades 2-6 email: email@example.com
Mike Stafford, Youth Minister email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jackie Schroeder, Nursery Care email: email@example.com
Carla Ocfemia, Parish Administrator and Social Media Specialist email: firstname.lastname@example.org – Phone: 415.921.3665 x302
Kevin Bulivant, Director of Finance and Facilities email: email@example.com – Phone: 415.921.3665 x316
Manny Gabiana, Associate Administrator email: firstname.lastname@example.org – Phone: 415.921.3665 x353
Nancy Svendsen – Events Coordinator email: email@example.com
Current Vestry Members
Vestry members are assigned as liaisons to each of the SWEEPS Ministries. They are as follows:
- Service (outreach): Ruth Tatum
- Worship: Jeff Landry and Deborah Franklin
- Education: Donna Davidson
- Evangelism: Rob Vanneman and Ron Clark
- Pastoral Care: Georgene Keeler and Martha Daetwyler
- Parish Life: Debbie Veatch
- Stewardship: Allan Jergesen
- Buildings and Grounds: Rick Darwin
- Service: Margaret Stafford
- Worship: Natalie Hala
- Education: Sandy Stadtfeld
- Evangelism: PENDING
- Pastoral Care: Josie McGann
- Parish Life: Amy and Christian Cebrian and Olivia and Stephen Gamboa
- Stewardship: Allan Jergesen
Vestry members can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org