Pacific Palisades Presbyterian Church
Rev. Dr. Steve Smith is a native Californian, having spent his formative years in Garden Grove and Laguna Beach. Following graduation from Lewis and Clark College, Steve earned degrees at both Fuller and Princeton Theological Seminaries – and then returned to Fuller to complete his Doctor of Ministry, with a focus upon helping churches clarify mission and purpose: the discernment of God’s vision for future ministry.
Steve has served churches in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Indiana prior to accepting the call to serve St. James Presbyterian Church in Tarzana in 2006. He and his wife Nancy (who concluded a 35-year college teaching career this past spring) have been delighting in God’s gift of marriage since 1985. They have one child, their daughter Cory, who is an attorney and is also enjoying married life – in Indianapolis.
Beyond church life, Steve’s passions include High Sierra backpacking and picturesque walks along the beach with Nancy.
Rev. Dr. Grace Park is a native of Southern California and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in Political Economics in 1987, with studies abroad in the U.K. and Japan.
After teaching severely emotionally disturbed (SED) high risk youth in Pacoima, she studied at Fuller Theological Seminary and graduated with a Masters of Divinity in 1993, focusing on multicultural studies and pastoral counseling. She just finished her doctorate of ministry in a joint program with New York Theological Seminary and New Theological Seminary of the West.
Pastor Grace was ordained in the PCUSA in 1996, and has served in different roles in the church as a children’s pastor, youth pastor and associate pastor. She has had the blessing of being able serve in urban missions with focus on the homeless, as well short-term missions in both Mexico and in Central America. She has served on several Boards in the southland, is very active at her children’s schools, and enjoys water sports, yoga, is an avid reader, and is a fond patron of the arts and a devout foodie.
Grace is married to Charlie, a physician, and they have four wonderful kids, Elijah, Hannah, Joshua and Jubilee, as well as three rambunctious dogs.
Hayden Roush hails from small town Ohio. He originally came to Los Angeles to pursue his childhood dream of producing of which he did for almost 10 years upon graduating with an MFA from the American Film Institute.
Having been blessed to fulfill his own childhood dream, Hayden found himself called to refocus his life on guiding youth to fulfill their own dreams and he knew first hand that they would need a solid foundation set in Jesus Christ in order to do so.
Over the past three years Hayden has been involved working youth in various capacities in the Palisades and surrounding neighborhoods, while completing his MA in Theology and Ministry from Fuller Seminary in Pasadena.
He is thrilled that God has opened the door for him to continue working with youth and families in the Palisades as the youth director of Pali Pres.
Director of Music
Jaco Wong is a Hong Kong native, Los Angeles-based composer and conductor. He holds a double Master’s degree in Choral Music and Composition from the USC Thornton School of Music.
Jaco is the winner of the Allen Strange Memorial Composition Contest 2014 and the receiver of Morten Lauridsen Endowed Composition Scholarship. His compositions have been performed by Hocket piano duo, San Jose Chamber Orchestra, SJSU Choraliers, Duo Equilibrium, and among others.
As a conductor, Jaco has recently participated at the International Conducting Workshop & Competition 2017 and Taipei International Choral Festival 2016.
Contemporary Worship Leader
Anthony Wamble is Pacific Islander native, multi-instrumentalist, recording artist, worship leader and teacher. He has a major in Graphic Design with double minors in Music and Psychology.
He has led his marching band drum line to national championship finals, spends some time recording as a studio musician, and performs live with his own music.
He teaches curriculum music to elementary and middle schools in the Los Angeles area teaching instrumentation, theory and preparing them for school musicals and performances. He also teaches curriculum STEM-STEAM-Technology Integration in the top ten L.A. based middle schools. Anthony’s passion for teaching technology and music has led him to open two locations of his learning center ATAM – Academy of Technology Art and Music where he teaches students of all ages and skill ranges.