FBC is blessed with a wonderful staff. Whether in pastoral ministry or administrative support, full-time or part time, these are the faces you’ll see around the church during the week.
Senior Pastor: Rev. Dr. David L. Wheeler (Pastor David) holds a Doctor of Theology degree from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, a Master of Divinity from Yale University Divinity School, a Master of Arts from the University of Kansas, and a Bachelor of Arts from Georgetown College. In additional to pastoral ministry in small and large churches across the country, he has held faculty positions at Central Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City, Fuller Theological Seminary, and San Francisco Theological Seminary/Southern California. He has also held visiting professorships at American Baptist Seminary of the West, Northern Baptist Theological Seminary, and at seminaries in El Salvador, Nicaragua, Columbia, and Russia. His sermons, essays, and academic articles have been published in a number of leading theological journals and magazines. Pastor David is married to Carol, who has worked as the Director of Volunteer Services for a mental health hospital serving children and youth. Their daughter Clare is a high-school science teacher in New Orleans, and their son Micah is a recent graduate of the San Francisco Art Institute.
Associate Pastor for Cambodian Ministry: Rev. Peter Im has served our Cambodian Ministry since 1986. In addition, he serves as Vice President of Cambodian Ministries for Christ. In 1974, he became a Christian in Cambodia before the country turned to communism. He received training as a pastor in a refugee camp in Thailand and at Multnomah Seminary in Portland. His passion is to lead Cambodians to Christ, the only way to God. He and his wife Shirley are the parents of three children. He enjoys running and gardening in his spare time.
Associate Pastor for Senior Adult Ministry and Visitation: Rev. Ed Stelle grew up in Medford, Oregon, the son of a pastor. After serving in the United States Navy he attended Simpson Seminary in San Francisco and was ordained as a pastor in the Apostolic Faith Church in 1968. He served as Chaplain of the Portland Police Bureau for 30 years, and was the Associate Pastor of Rivercrest Community Church of Portland. He is currently the Supervising Chaplain of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, supervising six chaplains and 100 volunteers throughout the jails and offices of county sheriff. Accompanied by his wife, Zel, Ed began his service at First Baptist Church in May of 2001.
Minister of Music: Travis Hatton holds a Masters of Music degree in Orchestral Conducting from the New England Conservatory of Music and a Bachelors of Music degree (Magna cum Laude) in Music Theory and Composition from the University of the Pacific. Mr. Hatton as appeared as a guest conductor with orchestras in Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, as well as with orchestras in Alaska, Colorado, Tennessee, Texas, California, Massachusetts, and Indiana. Before coming to FBC, Mr. Hatton served as Director of Music and Art at Tabor Heights United Methodist Church in Portland. He considers it a great pleasure and a blessing to be able to serve in ministry through music, which he believes to be one of the most important and beautiful blessings God has given to mankind. In addition to his position at FBC, Mr. Hatton is currently the Conductor of Portland’s Sunnyside Symphony Orchestra, Director of Orchestras at Valley Catholic School (in Beaverton) and Conductor of the Vancouver Children’s Opera. He lives in Vancouver with wife, Lynelle, and two children, Kyle and Kara.
Youth Directors: Araceli Martinez has been with First Baptist Church since she was born. She is partnering as Youth Director with Antoinette Preston and is the organizing side of the duo. On Sunday mornings she also doubles as the Nursery Director, working with children from infancy to 4 years of age. She is currently studying nursing at Linfield – Good Samaritan School of Nursing and is working as a lab assistant during the summer. In the future, she hopes to work as a Registered Nurse in the Emergency Department or Medical-Surgical Unit in Portland for 2 years, and then participate in Doctors Without Borders and missional nursing organizations.
Antoinette Preston was born and raised in Portland. She has been faithfully attending First Baptist Church since she was ten years old. She has been an active member and leader of the REAL youth group and Awakening young adult group. Antoinette heard the call to ministry when she was fifteen years old and has since then strived to become a youth pastor by teaching Sunday school for high school, middle school and elementary school students. She has been on six mission trips, four as a student and two as a leader. Antoinette’s passion is to see high school students truly develop a relationship with Jesus and own their faith.
Praise Accompanist: Toni Pfau serves as accompanist with the Voices in Praise at our casual (9:00) worship services. Outside of church, she works as a pianist for the Oregon Repertory Singers and musician for the Crestwood care center. She is also an independent music instructor for children, teaching piano, keyboard, voice, and guitar. Seasonally, you can also find her playing piano at Nordstrom and at the Portland Airport. Toni attended George Fox University, majoring in music performance.
Administrative and Lay Staff
Facilities and Events Manager: Keith Ponce grew up in Portland, and worked in the furniture industry for 34 years. He has an associates degree in Electronics. He enjoys being with his family, reading, baseball, bicycling, computers and hiking. A member of FBC since 1999, Keith feels very fortunate to be working and worshipping at the same church. Keith is married, with two children.
Business Administrator: Cathy Francis lives in Beaverton with her husband Rick. She has two grown children. Cathy loves to read just about anything, and has occasionally been caught reading the dictionary for fun. She also loves to work in her vegetable garden, knit, crochet, spin and tat (Remember tatting? Your grandmother probably did that!). She also loves to put things in order, which works out well for her job. Cathy spends some of her free time cruising the internet, finding all sorts of interesting things and trying to keep ahead of her kids in “coolness” factor. They don’t care, but that’s only because she’s winning.
Drop-in Ministry Director: Jack Brophy heads up the organization and administration of our feeding ministry, including co-ordination with the Oregon Food Bank and other social-service organizations.
Food Services Director: Mary Olson is the “kitchen Czarina,” responsible for monthly Sunday dinners, Wednesday evening meals, and other church meals. She also co-ordinates the volunteers in the kitchen and keeps the church running on a full stomach.
Graphic Communications Specialist: Jason Chastain lives in Portland with his wife Kathleen. He has a degree in Graphic Design and is the webmaster for this site. Jason is also the Assistant Business Administrator.
Receptionists: Sylvana Insua-Rieger is the morning receptionist. She directs calls and visitors, while also supporting staff with administrative tasks. She has thoroughly enjoyed her move to Portland and its many rainy days. In her free time she likes to knit and practice languages.
Tony Im has been attending First Baptist Church since he was a baby. Being the son of Pastor Peter Im, he and his family regularly attended church. He has since become a core part of the youth/college groups. Also having a passion for drumming, he naturally started playing with the FBC Worship Band that has played worship for weekly worship services. He currently works as an administrative assistant for the church as a part time job. His future plans include studying at PSU, getting more involved with mission projects, and of course, drumming.