CLERGY, STAFF, AND VESTRY

Our parish's life depends on the labor of many people who work together to carry out our mission. As rector, the Rev'd Benjamin Straley leads the parish and represents S. Stephen's to our neighborhood, the Diocese, and the wider community. Other clergy assist the rector in leading worship, preaching, teaching, and caring for our community, all according to the particular characteristics of their order and office. Likewise, our professional lay staff lead, direct, and manage various programmatic and administrative aspects of our parish life. The vestry is the governing board of the parish. They are elected from among their fellow parishioners, lead by example, and oversee the material fabric of our community.

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The Rev'd Benjamin Straley

Rector

Father Benjamin Straley began as Rector of S. Stephen’s parish on 15 August 2020, the Feast of the Assumption. Prior to his call to S. Stephen’s, Fr. Benjamin served for two years as the Assistant Rector of St. John’s in Essex, Connecticut. While there, his primary focus was pastoral care along with Christian Formation and Adult Education. He was particularly passionate about forming deeper engagement with discipleship and spirituality. He also led the parish in a diocesan initiative called Joining Jesus in a New Missional Age, which worked to equip church members with the skills necessary to attend to the stories in their neighborhood, and to see what “God is up to” in the lives of those outside the church walls. Prior to ordained ministry, Fr. Benjamin was Associate Director of Music and Organist of Washington National Cathedral, and he is a graduate of the Yale School of Music and Berkeley Divinity School at Yale. In his free time, he enjoys cooking (being a huge Ina Garten devotee), British television, improving his sailing skills, and heaping affection on his pets: two cats named Charlie Brown and Linus, and an Australian Shepherd-Siberian Husky mix named Grace.  Grace is quickly becoming an ambassador for S. Stephen's as she encounters Brown University students around campus!

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Robert Lehman

Interim Organist and Choirmaster

Robert Wylie Lehman, conductor, organist, harpsichordist, and composer, has served on the staff of several distinguished churches, including the Washington National Cathedral (of which he is a Fellow), the Princeton University Chapel, and Saint Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in New York City. For fourteen years he served as organist and choirmaster of historic Christ Church in New Haven, Connecticut where, under his leadership, the choir and music program gained an international reputation for excellence. He served The Church of St. Michael & St. George in St. Louis, Missouri as Organist and Choirmaster from 2008 to 2021. Maintaining an active career as a performer, Lehman appears as a conductor and solo recitalist both in this country and abroad. His compositions are published by several publishers and have been sung and recorded by leading choirs around the globe.

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Fr. Bill Locke

Assisting Priest

Fr. Bill Locke was ordained as deacon and priest in Rhode Island by Bishop George Hunt. He served as Rector of the Church of the Good Shepherd and then St. Paul's Church, both in Pawtucket. For the past eight years he has been engaged in interim ministry, including a brief time at S. Stephen's. His wife Ethel teaches physics at Woonsocket High School. They have two adult daughters and two grandsons.

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Fr. Michael Pearson

Assisting Priest

Fr. Michael Pearson was ordained to the Diaconate (1977) and the Priesthood (1978)  by Bishop William Weinhauer (Diocese of Western North Carolina).  He has served as the Curate at S. Stephen's Church, Providence (1977 - 1981), the Rector of the Church of the Epiphany, Providence,  Priest Associate at St. Mark's Church, New Canaan, Ct. (1989 - 1992), Rector of St. Luke's Church, Anchorage, Ky. (1992 - 2001), and St. Mary's Church, Wayne, Pa. (2001 - 2012).  Fr.  Pearson retired in 2013 and returned to Rhode Island where he has supplied at various parishes throughout the Diocese. He is married to Julie and they have one grown child.  

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Jennifer Long

Office Administrative Assistant

Jen Long keeps the office running and prints the Kalendars every week. She's a singer/songwriter, artist, designer, wife, and mother of two. Jen is an environmental activist who loves the ocean - she's even been known to go swimming in the middle of winter!

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Cheryl Foley

Financial Assistant

Content Coming.

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Andrew Lonardo

Sexton

Content coming.

 VESTRY

 

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Thomas Bledsoe

Senior Warden

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Muriel Jobbers

Treasurer

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Patricia Barnes

Class of 2020

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Leana Hooks

Class of 2021

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Joy D'Ambra

Class of 2022

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Sharon Lloyd Clark

Class of 2023

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Alison Huff

Junior Warden

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Molly Ellis

Clerk

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Bruce Lennihan

Class of 2020

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Lynne deBenedette

Class of 2021

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Robert Rose

Class of 2022