The Rt Rev Greg Rickel
Greg Rickel serves as Bishop Diocesan. He was elected in May 2007 and began his time as bishop on Sept. 15, 2007. He very much enjoys the outdoors and is especially grateful to have been called to serve in this beautiful diocese. He also loves reading, his family and serving the people of the diocese. As Bishop of Olympia, he supports the Episcopal Church in Western Washington and their efforts to live out the new diocesan vision: Locally Centered and Networked Communities, Forming Christian Leaders for Sacrament & Service.
The Rt Rev Brian Prior
The Rt. Rev. Brian N. Prior, retired Bishop of the Episcopal Church in Minnesota, is a Assisting Bishop here in the Diocese of Olympia.
Bishop Prior has deep roots in the Pacific Northwest. He served as the rector of the Episcopal Church of the Resurrection in Spokane, WA. He was also the Executive Director of Camp Cross, the Director of Education and Development for the Episcopal Diocese of Spokane, the Chaplain and Vice President for the Episcopal Church’s House of Deputies, and served on the Executive Council for the Episcopal Church.
The Most Rev Melissa Skelton, ACC
Bishop Skelton served here in the Diocese of Olympia as rector of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Seattle and Canon for Congregational Development. During this time, Bishop Skelton developed and launched our College for Congregational Development, which continues to this day and has spread to diocese across the United States and into Canada. Bishop Skelton was elected 9th Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of New Westminster in 2013, and in 2018, she was elected Metropolitan of the Ecclesiastical Province of British Columbia and Yukon, making her the first woman in the Anglican Church of Canada to hold the position.
The Rev Canon Arienne Davison
Canon to the Ordinary
Arienne SiuLing Davison (she/her) was born 1.5 miles from St Mark’s Cathedral and grew up in Auburn, WA. She was baptized at Christ Church, Seattle. After attending Virginia Theological Seminary (2007), she was ordained to the priesthood and served at several Episcopal churches in the Diocese of Olympia. While working alongside faithful people in congregational ministry, she also served the diocese as the Canon for Multicultural Ministries (2011-2016).
She is a Qualified Administrator of the Intercultural Development Inventory and works within the diocese and in the wider Episcopal Church to teach tools for increasing the Intercultural Competency of our ministers and ministries. For the past four years, Arienne has served as trainer at the College for Congregational Development in the Dioceses of Olympia, Northern California and Spokane.
Arienne lives in Bremerton with her spouse and two children.
You can contact Arienne with questions about:
- Diocesan PoliciesClergy
- Congregational Conflict
- Really important ministry stuff you aren’t sure who else to talk to about it.
Missioner for Anti-Poverty Organizing
Aaron Scott is currently the organizer on staff at Chaplains on the Harbor. He serves on the National Steering Committee for the Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, with The Rev. Dr. William J. Barber and The Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis. Aaron has worked in poor people's organizing, popular education, and social movement building since 2006. He holds a Masters degree from Union Theological Seminary in Biblical Studies and has been trained as an organizer by tent city residents, welfare recipients, and incarcerated people. Aaron is a second-generation preacher, a third-generation organizer, and proud papa to baby Moses.
Aaron is available to consult with leaders and congregations around building relationships and organizing with homeless people, incarcerated people, and all those directly impacted by poverty.
Youth Ministry Co-ordinator
As Youth Ministry Coordinator for the Diocese of Olympia, Alex oversees activities for pre-teens and teens (6th – 12th grades) and works in tandem with local church youth ministry leaders to support youth outreach and programming across the Diocese. Originally from the UK, Alex first joined the Diocese as a camp counselor at Camp Huston - the Diocese of Olympia’s summer camp and conference center in the Cascade mountains. After graduating from the University of Central Lancashire with a Bachelor’s degree in International Hospitality Management and Marketing, Alex joined Camp Huston as the full-time Program Director. In 2018 Alex moved to Olympia, became involved with St Christopher’s church on Steamboat Island, and started working for a non-profit supporting survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault
The Rev Canon Alissa Newton
Canon for Congregational Development and Leadership Formation
Alissa oversees the College for Congregational Development inside the diocese and also the “launches” in other dioceses as they come on board. She also oversees our consultant networks and initiatives within our diocese that focus on the development and formation of congregational leaders, clergy and lay.
Executive Assistant to the Office of the Bishop
April Caballero is an Administrative and Communications Specialist out of Austin, Texas. Shortly after moving to Seattle in 2008, April began attending Church of the Apostles (COTA) in Fremont, which was her introduction to the Episcopal Church. In 2011, April began as a Parish Administrator at Church of the Ascension in Magnolia and then went on to serve as the Operations Manager at George: Center for Community while pursuing freelance work in print and web design. During that time, April worked as a Communications Associate for Kids4Peace, an international nonprofit working with Jewish, Christian, and Muslim youth to end conflict and inspire hope in divided societies around the world, while also completing a website upgrade and taking on social media and communications for COTA. After George: Center for Community was closed in June of 2016, the Office of the Bishop brought her on to facilitate Convention registration and exhibits, as well as support the Governance and Communications departments. She also took on the role of Ministry Coordinator at COTA at that time. April holds a BA in communications and religion from Baylor University. She is passionate about liturgy, cetaceans, and wine-making.
Barbara A Fox
Barbara is completing a 4 year term on the Standing Committee and as President this past year has chaired the Diocesan Strategic Review Task Force. She has served on the Joint Finance Panel as a representative of Standing Committee and is currently serving on the Assessment Review Task Force, and is a member of the Dismantling Racism Training Team. She was Treasurer of All Saints-Bellevue and was Treasurer of the Legal Foundation of Washington, overseeing grants to provide civil legal aid to the poor.
She has an extensive real estate lending and banking background and is a retired Escrow Officer/Limited Practice Officer and just completed 3 years on the Character & Fitness Committee, Washington State Bar Association; she is a volunteer for Seafair.
Director of Huston Camp and Conference Center
Missioner for Agrarian Ministry
The Rev. Brian Wright
Missioner for Veterans Ministry
Diocesan Coordinator for Episcopal Relief & Development
Director, St. Andrew's House Retreat and Conference Center
Dan Oberg serves as Executive Director at St. Andrew’s House, a retreat & conference center owned by the Episcopal Church of Western Washington. Dan was previously Director of the Grünewald Guild, an art & faith community near Leavenworth, for 10 years. Prior to that experience, Dan served as a lay minister in a number of nonprofits over the past three decades, as an administrator, counselor, program coordinator, Board member and consultant. With his MA in Marriage & Family Ministries from Fuller, Dan is a Clinical Member of the American Association for Marriage & Family Therapy, and also received a Certificate in Leadership in the New Parish with The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology. Dan is married to his lovely wife, Lois, and has two grown sons, embarking on adventures of their own.
Canon for Diocesan Networking and Connections
As the Canon for Diocesan Networking and Connections, Dede Moore's focus is on how we gather as a diocese, both through our annual convention and the Bishop’s Leadership Conference, as well as other diocesan gatherings and special events. She also continues her leadership work with our existing networks, including our governing bodies, provide oversight of human resources for Diocesan House and diocesan entities, and consult with congregations on human resources issues and questions.
Nationally, she has worked in the Secretariat of the House of Deputies at three General Conventions and on the staff of the General Board of Examining Chaplains. Dede joined the diocesan staff in 1993; previous responsibilities included executive for governance and convention, and five years as editor of the Episcopal Voice.
On her own time, she is a landscape and nature photographer, an adventuresome cook and the wife of a sometimes challenging, wonderful husband.
The Rev Dr Dennis Tierney
Diocesan Property Manager
The Rev. Dr. Dennis S. Tierney currently serves part-time as Property Manager for the Diocese of Olympia. From 2007 to 2016, he served as Rector of Saint Barnabas Episcopal Church on Bainbridge Island, Washington. Prior to his call to Saint Barnabas, he served as Associate Rector at Saint Bede’s Episcopal Church, Menlo Park, CA where he directed adult education and formation activities as a special focus of his ministry along with responsibilities for children, youth, and family ministry. Prior to his ordination, he was originally a high school teacher of social studies and student activities director. He then served as a professor of teacher education and program administrator at The Claremont Graduate School, California State University, Fullerton, and San Jose State University. His last position before entering seminary was with the Commission on Teacher Credentialing in Sacramento, California where he served as Director of the Professional Services Division at the Commission, the nation's oldest independent teaching standards board.
He is married to Dr. Grace E. Grant, professor of education emerita at Dominican University of San Rafael, California. In his spare time, he pursues an avid interest in cooking, theatre, opera, and historical murder mysteries with occasional forays into the world of YouTube.
Archivist and Records Manager
Diane Wells is a Northwest native, born in Alaska and raised in the Seattle area. She has served the Diocese of Olympia as its Archivist and Records Manager since 1994, making sure diocesan records are properly maintained and that the documentary heritage of the diocese is preserved. Before coming to the diocese, Diane worked as a reference librarian in public and university libraries. When not in her "tower" office at Diocesan House--the Leary Mansion’s former billiard room--Diane hosts international students, has a home-based business, enjoys traveling and spending time with family, friends and an ever-growing assortment of pets.
Edie is a Seattle native (raised in Shoreline). After a wonderful freshman year at Bethel College and Seminary (now known as Bethel University) in St. Paul, Minn., she returned home and earned a B.A. degree in Finance from Seattle Pacific University.
Edie's accounting career has been mostly in non-profit organizations - primarily schools - including 20 years as an accountant at Lakeside School. She also accumulated four years in for-profit accounting, served a couple of terms as a member/treasurer of her homeowners' association board, and as financial secretary for her church. Edie is an associate member of ASWA (American Society of Women Accountants), enjoys volunteering for Woodland Park Zoo, playing the piano and crocheting.
The Ven Gen Grewell
Gen Grewell is the archdeacon for the Diocese of Olympia. As part of the diocesan staff, Gen's responsibilities include gathering the deacons as community twice per year. She is assigned by Bishop Rickel to be the diaconal presence at St. John, Olympia, and she also travels the diocese with the bishop on his pastoral visits. Gen is also charged with finding ways to educate and help congregations understand the role of the vocational diaconate. To do this she often makes visits on her own to congregations who either do not have a deacon or who have expressed an interest in having a deacon so that they can learn about who deacons are.
Gen was ordained in 2000. She is currently involved with various outreach ministries such as South Puget Sound Habitat for Humanity - Faith Relations Committee, Interfaith Works and their current initiative to help end homelessness within Thurston County. Over the past several years, she has been active with Cursillo and Kairos, serving as a member of clergy teams for these events. Gen and her husband, Gary, have four children and eight grandchildren. They both enjoy golfing and camping around the Pacific Northwest with their travel trailer.
Coordinator for Graphic Design & Video Production
Greg Hester has served as Graphic Designer and Publications Specialist for the Diocese of Olympia since 2008. In addition to design and layout, Greg is responsible for the production of written, graphic and visual materials for promotional/explanatory purposes on behalf of the diocese. This includes the creation and production of logos, program brochures, web graphics, catalogs, annual reports, invitations, manuals, mailers, business cards and letterhead. Greg is also heading up our efforts in video recording and production. Before joining the diocesan staff he worked in real estate marketing, most recently as graphic designer for John F. Buchan Homes.
Greg is a Seattle native and graduated from the Washington State University honors college. Besides Cougar athletics he enjoys history, photography, fishing, playing the piano, watching and collecting memorabilia from the original Star Trek and listening to classic Elton John.
Grace La Torra
Dean of the Iona School
Director of Refugee Resettlement Office
Bishop Rickel has appointed Jim Beckwith as the Acting Treasurer for the Diocese of Olympia. In this role Jim will provide links between our finance office and governing bodies, and he will bring items and issues to the notice of the appropriate governing body – Diocesan Council, Joint Finance Panel, Board of Directors – at the appropriate time for discussion and action. He will also be available as a contact for congregations that have questions about financial issues, as well as mission congregations needing signatures on use agreements and contracts.
Canon Missioner for Communications
As Canon Missioner for Communications, Josh tells stories from across the diocese and uses the wide variety of communication platforms to deepen connections between individual parishes, missions, and ministries, broadening impact and reaching new communities through social media channels.
Josh worked for the Seattle International Film Festival's Digital Marketing Department, aiding in the development of a new digital and social media marketing strategy for the 2016 festival and year-round cinema. He was the writer and director of Seattle Pacific University’s touring theatre troupe and has been a freelance writer for a number churches, universities, and nonprofit organizations across the Puget Sound. He has a BA in Theatre and an MFA in Arts Leadership from Seattle University.
He enjoys spending time at home with his wife and their two cats, is an avid reader and film lover, and is passionate about the intersection of faith, art, and social justice.
Kerry is responsible for the overall internet strategy for the diocese. This includes not only diocesan functions, but also the monitoring and supplying of resources to congregations in order that they might have a meaningful presence in cyberspace. He is also responsible for the maintenance, oversight and coordination of computer hardware, software and network systems for Diocesan House. In addition, he manages the diocesan leadership database, serves as the webmaster for the diocesan website and provides technical support for diocesan staff. As an integral part of the Office of Bishop and the diocese in general, he serves as a technical advisor and creative partner in maintaining and improving diocesan communications.
In his free time, he entertains his wife with home remodeling projects, travel, dog walking and an extensive collection of classic movies.
Finance Assistant and Insurance Coordinator
Lori is a Seattle native, her family has been in Seattle since 1910. She graduated from the University of Puget Sound with a degree in Music Education and sings in the Seattle Bach Choir, Sine Nomine and Canzonetta. In her spare time she gardens, makes quilts and does genealogy research.
Summer College Intern for Faith Formation, 2021
Director of Resource Center
Associate Director of Refugee Resettlement Office
Adult Faith Formation
Sylvia Sepulveda’s focus is on supporting churches and small groups in gathering for contemplative and mindfulness practices. She also is actively developing Spanish language congregational resources for both clergy and lay leadership.
Born and raised in the Los Angeles, California area, Sylvia has enjoyed applying a professional skill set developed from fourteen years of material planning management in the aerospace industry to volunteer work at six different Episcopal churches in five different states, primarily as a catechist in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd program and as a facilitator for contemplative practices such as Centering and Welcoming Prayer, Contemplative Creativity, and Mindful Poetry. She’s a proud graduate of Education for Ministry (EfM,) the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, and is currently a student in the Spiritual Direction program at the Haden Institute. Most recently, Sylvia served as a Bishop’s Committee member, People’s Warden, and Senior Warden at Christ Church, Anacortes and currently serves on the Bishop Nedi Rivera Latino Ministry Fund Advisory Committee, the Diocesan Nominations Committee, and is a member of Ethnic Ministries Circulo de Color.
In her spare time, Sylvia enjoys writing fiction, reading fiction and poetry, knitting, walking in the PNW forestlands, hanging out with her four cats, attending concerts with her husband Scott, and traveling with their young adult children, Sara and Sinjin.
Canon Missioner for Faith Formation: 35 & Under
Valerie comes to the Office of the Bishop from Grace Episcopal Church, Bainbridge Island, where she has spent the last five years coordinating their Children & Families Ministry. She is the author of a curriculum for 2nd- 4th grades, "Storytellers," that uses children's books as a jumping off point for discussing Christian values and scriptural teachings. She was part of the leadership team that brought Grace’s Summer Day Camp to the children of farm workers last year in collaboration with La Iglesia Episcopal de la Resurrección and St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Mt. Vernon.
Prior to landing in the Pacific Northwest, Valerie spent three years as the Christian Education Director at St. Martin-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church in Keller, Texas, where she initiated a weekly “Wednesday Night Live” program, which included dinner and break-out discussion groups for all ages. Before discovering a vocation in the church, she worked with public libraries throughout California helping them develop services for adults with low literacy skills, ultimately spending six years at the California State Library, managing the statewide adult literacy effort. In 2012, Valerie and her family moved to Bainbridge Island where she began writing creatively, gradually becoming a regular contributor to Bainbridge Island Magazine and the founding editor of Grace’s seasonal blog, Lenten Muse (www.lentenmuse.wordpress.com), which gathers the art, poetry, photography, and writing of Grace members to enrich and deepen the experience of Lent. In her spare time, she reads, practices yoga, and enjoys the company of her family: husband, Fred, and teenagers Ricky and Cara.