New Columbia District administrative assistant joins Conference staff


Brandon Rhodes has long been interested in churches reaching outside of the traditional building space to create intentional community.

“A lot of religious change is happening. Some people see it as a threat and I see it as a fantastic opportunity,” he said.

Rhodes, who holds a master’s degree and doctoral degree in religious and future studies, said he loves the idea of churches transforming unused space into affordable housing or renting old church space out to local nonprofits.

He was also looking for a job, and as fate would have it, the Columbia District – where a lot of these transformative church changes are already happening – was hiring for a new administrative assistant.

“I was amazed,” he said. “I wanted to be part of some of these creative experiences.”

Raised in the Portland area, Rhodes earned his bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from the University of Oregon, holds a master’s degree in pastor and intercultural studies from Multnomah Biblical Seminary and his doctorate of ministry in semiotics and future studies from George Fox Evangelical Seminary.

Rhodes most recently worked as an office manager for a masonry company in Portland, and previously owned his own small business. He’s a founding member of Springwater Community Church, an intentional Christian Community in the Lents neighborhood of Portland, and has been active in the Parish Collective.

He knows Eric Conklin, Camp and Retreat Ministries communications coordinator, through the Parish Collective and said it was Conklin who recommended he apply for this job working for Columbia District Superintendent Erin Martin.

“I’m looking forward to meeting folks all over the district and provide support to the great work they’re doing,” Rhodes said.