Community Church of Sebastopol

United Church of Christ

Come and Find the Quiet Center

1000 Gravenstein Hwy North           707.823.2484

Church Staff

The Rev. Dr. Benjamin J. Broadbent, Senior Minister

Pastor Benjamin (or Ben) began his ministry at the Community Church in August 2016. Ben comes to us with his wife Brooke Bell and their son, Marin (11), and daughter, Sophia (7), from Colorado Springs, Colorado, where he served for 17 years at The First Congregational Church. They are happy to return to Northern California – Ben grew up in Santa Cruz and Brooke is from San Jose. He and Brooke met for the first time in our Pilgrim House in 1997, at a meeting of counselors for Camp Caz!

Ben earned his Master of Divinity from Harvard Divinity School in 1998 and received his Doctor of Ministry in Preaching from the Chicago Theological Seminary in 2012, writing a dissertation on Preaching as an Embodied Practice.

In addition to ministry, Ben loves playing guitar and ukulele, listening to live music, beach cruiser bicycles, craft beer, speaking Spanish and traveling.

Rev. Rachel Knuth, Associate Minister to Children and Families

Rev. Rachel Knuth is here Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday mornings and Sunday mornings during worship as she presents the Children's Message during worship. Under Rachel's tutelage, our Sunday school teachers work with the youngest members of our church families with Bible stories and projects appropriate for their age groups. Rachel was ordained and called as our Minister to Children and Families in August of 2015. Rachel and her husband, Nathan, live in Sebastopol with their four children.

Ross Galleto, Director of Youth Ministries

Ross has been a volunteer Youth Group Leader at the Community Church for the past 4 years for both the Middle School and Sr. High Youth Groups. He has also served as a volunteer for the Northern California-Nevada Conference (NCNC-UCC) Youth & Outdoor Ministries program for more than 8 years. Ross lives in Santa Rosa with his husband, Silver, and two foster sons, Eian and Elias. He is a graduate of Santa Rosa Junior College and is currently pursuing a B.A. in Sociology from Sonoma State University.

Karin Seder, Office Manager and Facilities Coordinator

Karin is in the office Monday through Thursday from 8:30 am to 4 pm and can help answer most of your questions, or find someone who can. Have a facility or calendar question? Karin is the person to ask.

Karin has been the Office Manager at the Community Church since January 2002. She is a Sonoma County native and enjoys spending time gardening, riding motorcycles and keeping track of her grandchildren - not necessarily in that order!

Jennifer Halleck, Bookkeeper, Receiving Treasurer

Jennifer Halleck joined our staff in April 2014. Jennifer has three sons who all participated in our youth groups, summer camps and apple pies, so she is familiar face around the Community Church and she brings with her a wealth of bookkeeping experience.

Jennifer is in the Financial Office on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings and can be reached at 707-823-2484 ext.103 or by email:

Suzanne White, Financial Secretary

  • 823-2484 ext.105

Suzanne is in the Financial Office one day a week, generally on Wednesdays.

Suzanne has been a member of the community and a member of The Community Church for many years. Following her retirement as a school business official, Suzanne joined our church staff to offer her expertise in our financial office. Suzanne and her late husband, David, worked for many years with our Mission & Outreach team on mission trips across the US and Central America.

Keith Blackstone, Custodian and Campus Maintenance

Although Keith has been very active at The Community Church for a number of years, he officially joined our staff on July 1, 2012 as our Custodian and Campus Maintenance person. Keith is responsible for our facilities set up, cleaning and supplies for each of our buildings as well as light maintenance issues that arise.

To leave a message for Keith, please contact Karin in the church office.

Brian Plaugher, Minister of Music

Rev. Brian Plaugher earned a Masters of Divinity from San Francisco Theological seminary in 1987, after and served as pastor in Presbyterian churches and, for 17 years, as pastor of the Community Church, UCC, in Guerneville. He has been our Minister of Music since 2005, supporting our music program where he leads the Chancel Choir, Wind Ensemble and Jazz Band. As our Minister of Music, Brian coordinates worship music with the directors of the Handbell Choir, the Children's Choir, Acoustic Folk Group, the Divine Connection and a wide variety of other music.

Brian also works as a chaplain at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital. Brian and his wife Pam have two grown sons and a high school daughter, and has lived in Guerneville for 27 years.

Karna Roa, Handbell Director

Fran Rasmus, Childcare Coordinator

Keyboardist Position Available

The Community Church of Sebastopol, a progressive, Open & Affirming congregation of the United Church of Christ, seeks a Keyboardist to join our collaborative pastoral and music staff team as we continue a tradition of quality liturgical music. Help nurture and evolve the music ministry program of our diverse and adventurous congregation.

For more information or to apply, please see the job posting.