The Rev. Dr. Jim Birchfield recently retired as Senior Pastor of First Presbyterian Church, Houston, after 27 years of leading churches and non-profits, including churches in Los Angeles and Newport Beach, California. He has a passion for equipping pastors and church leaders to discover and then live into their unique vision as part of God’s Kingdom.
Over the course of his ministry service, Jim worked with Kevin Ford’s Transforming Church process to develop and implement ministries plans as both a senior pastor in Houston and as an executive pastor with St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Newport Beach.
In addition to his role with LFM, Jim current serves on the Board of Directors for Strategic Resource Group, a non-profit that supports indigenous Christian leadership in the Greater Middle East and North Africa and on the board of the MENA Trauma Healing Resource Center. Over the course of his career, Jim has also served on the boards of The Union Rescue Mission in Los Angeles, Houston Christian High School, Presbyterian School, The Outreach Foundation, The Nehemiah Center, Main Street Ministries, and TrueWorks, a non-profit seeking to help people better integrate faith and work.
He has also led short term ministry trips to Egypt, Israel/Palestine, Jordan, Romania, Poland, Kenya, South Africa, and Uganda. Prior to receiving a call into pastoral ministry, Jim spent 13 years in advertising, marketing, and magazine publishing in Detroit and Los Angeles. Jim earned a BS in advertising and marketing from Michigan State University, and an MDiv and DMin from Fuller Theological Seminary in California. He loves to travel, is an exceedingly average golfer and loves watching college football.
He has been married to his high school sweetheart, Marta, for 44 years. They recently moved from Houston to Westport, Connecticut, to be closer to their two married daughters and five grandchildren.
Senior Executive Coach
Jim P. Osterhaus, Ph.D is Senior Executive Coach for Leighton Ford Ministries, where he supports pastors and ministry leaders as they navigate organizational, communication, change, and conflict issues.
His latest book, Avoiding Pastoral Pitfalls (Hendrickson, 2021), deals with the practical issues of ministry. He has authored or co-authored fifteen other books dealing with leadership, relationships, and conflict, including Thriving Through Ministry Conflict (Zondervan, 2010).
Jim has extensive and diverse experience as an executive coach, public speaker, organizational consultant, and church counseling director. His experience includes a special commission from the Vice President of the United States to consider the emotional effects of government downsizing, facilitation of the Organizational Culture component of the U.S. Army Staff redesign, and teaching seminars at Denver Seminary, Bethel Seminary, and Trinity School of Ministry. Jim has also teamed with Leighton Ford to conduct ministry leadership mentoring retreats in the United States and Canada.
He holds a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from American University and degrees in counseling from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and Catholic University. Jim and his wife, Marcy, have three children and six grandchildren. They live in northern Virginia.
Mentoring Catalyst and Coach
Anne Grizzle is an author, spiritual director, family therapist, and retreat leader who serves as Chaplain of the Boys Home of Virginia. These experiences enrich her work with Leighton Ford Ministries, where she serves on the Board of Directors, oversees mentoring communities for global ministry leaders, and provides coaching for pastors.
She regularly hosts spiritual retreats at the Bellfry near Lexington, Virginia, which she envisioned and created as a place of welcome, rest, renewal, and solace. Anne is associate faculty for Shalem Institute for Spirituality, where she offers workshops on group spiritual direction and young adult leadership. She also serves on the board of Bittersweet Creative and is co-chair of World Vision’s Every Last One campaign to end extreme poverty.
Anne received her B.S. (Magna Cum Laude) from Harvard College with a concentration in Psychology and Social Relations, her M.S. from the Columbia University School of Social Work, and her Post Masters Certificate in Advanced Clinical Social Work and Family Therapy from Hunter College of New York. She is a member of the American Family Therapy Association, American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, and National Association of Social Workers.
She has authored two books, contributed to two more, and been a featured speaker on national television, including Oprah and Donahue. Anne and her husband, David, have three sons, two daughters-in-law, and seven grandchildren. They live in Lexington, Virginia.
Executive Director of Ministry Teams
Rich Hurst is Executive Director of Ministry Teams for Leighton Ford Ministries, bringing years of experience as a pastor, church leadership consultant, and editor of church ministry resources for a major Christian publisher. He joined LFM in 2019 to help develop a Master’s in Ministry Leadership program in partnership with Belhaven University.
Rich served for 15 years as Pastor of Leadership and Staff Development for McLean Bible Church outside Washington, D.C., which grew from several hundred to twenty thousand on weekends while being listed as one of the fastest-growing churches in America. In 2015, a longtime friend asked Rich to take on the unique role of “company pastor” for Tempered Networks in Seattle. Before those roles, he was Pastor of Congregational Life at The Crystal Cathedral, Director of Singles and Young Adults at University Presbyterian Church, and Pastor of Singes at Calvin Presbyterian Church. He holds a Master of Divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary. Books include https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/191402.Rich_Hurst.
His first book, Giving the Ministry Away: Empowering Single Adults for Effective Leadership (David C. Cook), won Leadership Book of the Year in its field. Rich worked with David C. Cook Publishing as an editor and director of Strategic Adult Ministry, which hosted two of the most extensive training conferences for single adult and young adult ministry in America.
Rich has coached and consulted with the Air Force Chaplains, Adventist Singles, Southern Baptist Sunday School Board, Federal Aviation Administration, Georgetown University, and local churches from a broad range of denominations. He and his wife, Kim, have two daughters and live on a horse farm in Virginia.
Senior Executive Advisor
Chris Joyner is Senior Executive Advisor for Leighton Ford Ministries, where he helps pastors and ministry leadership teams recognize how God has uniquely called and gifted them to live out the Kingdom of God in their local context.
Chris brings a broad and unique background to his coaching relationships, having worked as a corporate consultant for Accenture, a pastoral staff member for two thriving congregations, and a church consultant.
He enjoys partnering with church leaders to help them navigate challenges, including day-to-day tactical challenges, future-oriented strategic challenges, and ongoing transformational challenges. His gift of discernment has proved valuable in helping churches move forward into fresh season of vibrant ministry.
Chris began his career with Accenture in Washington, D.C., helping clients adopt and adapt to new systems and processes. He then joined the executive pastoral staff of a growing church in Fairfax, Virginia, and also spent seven years leading corporate worship at Frontline, the nationally-recognized young adult ministry of McLean Bible Church.
Having previously been featured in Worship Leader and Song Discovery magazines, Chris now lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with his wife, Rachel, and two children.
Pastor, Spiritual Director, Mentor, and Coach. Courtney is passionate about helping people find freedom in Christ. She earned both her MDiv and DMin at Fuller Theological Seminary. Her ministry career spans more than two decades, including serving Marin Covenant Church, University Presbyterian Church, Seattle, and First Presbyterian Church, Berkeley. In addition, Courtney runs Deep Well Ministries, which is designed to offer women a place to rest, renew, and invest in their spiritual development. She’s affectionately called both ‘word girl’ and ‘RevDocMom’ by her grown daughters, Emma and Camille. Her favorite days include hiking, cycling, or reading in the California sun.
Executive Director, North American Mentoring Services
Jim Singleton is Executive Director of Missional Leadership for Leighton Ford Ministries, leveraging years of experience as a senior pastor, seminary professor, mentor, and mentee to help raise up the next generation of missional leadership.
In addition to his part-time role with LFM, Jim serves full-time as Associate Professor of Pastoral Leadership and Evangelism at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, where he directs Thriving in Ministry, a Lilly Endowment-funded program to help pastors in New England “thrive” in the very difficult practice of ministry in this season. He has a passion for equipping pastors and congregations to revitalize their approach to ministry.
The son of a Presbyterian minister, Jim brings 30 years of church leadership experience, including serving as senior pastor of churches in Texas, Washington, and most recently, First Presbyterian Church of Colorado Springs, a downtown congregation of 4,000 members. He has served at Gordon-Conwell since 2012.
Jim first met Leighton Ford in 1989 while working on his doctorate in Boston. As a senior pastor, he later utilized Kevin Ford’s Transforming Church: A Visioning Roadmap (LINK) process. He considers Leighton to be “the chiropractor of my soul.”
Jim is an avid fan of baseball history, church history, hiking, and cross-country skiing. He is married to Sara, who is pastor of Old South Presbyterian in Newburyport, MA. The have a son, James, and a daughter, Rachel, and three grandchildren.