Bishop and Staff
The Offices of the Bishop are located in the Bishop Tuttle Memorial Building, which is connected to Christ Church Cathedral in downtown St. Louis.
Our address is:
Offices of the Bishop
1210 Locust Street
St. Louis, MO 63103
See our listing below for individual contact information. Click on the pictures or the "bio" link to read more about the staff members and diocesan leadership team.
Visit the Bishop's Blog page for reflections, prayers, and videos from Bishop Deon Johnson.
The Bishop & Staff
The Rt. Rev. Deon Johnson11th Bishop, Episcopal Diocese of Missouri
Deon Kevin Johnson was born and raised in a small village on the Caribbean island of Barbados. His faith was formed under the watchful eye of his maternal grandmother who taught him how to pray, how to listen with his heart and introduced him to the beauty of worship in the hymns and spirituals she sang throughout Deon’s childhood.
His grandmother’s presence and prayers continued to influence him as he immigrated from Barbados to New York at the age of 14. “Leaving my mother and grandmother behind was perhaps one of the most difficult journeys my older brother and I could ever undertake,” Johnson recalls. “Because of their unconditional love, and the faithful witness of many others, I have been shaped into the person and priest I am today.”
After receiving Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and History and an Associates degree in Biology at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH (2000), he went on to earn a Master of Divinity degree from The General Theological Seminary in New York, NY (2003).
Deon served as Associate Rector at Christ Episcopal Church in Shaker Heights, OH (2003-2006), and most recently as Rector of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Brighton, MI (2006-2020). A veteran Episcopal priest with deep experience in social justice issues and ministry to gay and lesbian communities, he has served in many positions in the wider church and the community. He continues to serve on the Taskforce for Liturgical and Prayer Book Revision and as a consultant with the Office of Black Ministries.
The Episcopal Diocese of Missouri elected the Rev. Deon Kevin Johnson as its 11th diocesan bishop on Nov. 23, 2019, at Christ Church Cathedral in St. Louis. He was elected on the first ballot at the diocesan convention during an election that involved 164 voting delegates. He received 71 votes from lay delegates and 42 votes from clergy.
Bishop Johnson was ordained as the 11th Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri on June 13, 2020, at Christ Church Cathedral in St. Louis. His ordination was originally scheduled for April 25, 2020, but the coronavirus forced a postponement of the event. Throughout the pandemic, Bishop Deon has has led with compassion and hope, redefining the mission and vision for The Episcopal Diocese of Missouri.
Bishop Johnson and his husband Jhovanny Osorio are the proud parents of two children, Lilohalani and Ja’Lon. He enjoys cooking, photography, hiking and being an armchair movie critic.
The Rev. Canon Doris WestfallCanon to the Ordinary
314-231-1220, ext. 1377 |
The Rev. Doris Westfall became Canon to the Ordinary in the Diocese of Missouri in 2019. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology, with minors in Sociology and Theology from Valparaiso University. She earned her Master's Degree in Social Work from St. Louis University and a Master of Divinity degree from the University of the South. The Rev. Canon Doris is certified by the Interim Ministry Network in Transitional Ministry and has completed work in Appreciative Transitional Ministry. Before becoming a priest, she was Director of Services for the St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired. She is married to David Westfall and has three grown sons, two Teddy Roosevelt terriers and three cats. When she is not busy visiting parishes, she is dreaming of visiting Scotland!
The Rev. Canon Doris' duties include:
- Parish search process
- Updating clergy and lay professional resumes and OTM profiles
- Diocesan Convention planning
- Diocesan Constitutions and Canons
- Title IV (ecclesiastical discipline)
- Diocesan Programs
- Clergy days and retreats
- Standing Committee
To schedule an appointment with the Rev. Canon Doris Westfall, please contact Jillian Smith in the Bishop's Office.
The Rev. Canon Whitney RiceCanon for Evangelism & Discipleship Development
314-231-1220, ext. 1383 |
The Rev. Canon Whitney Rice is an Episcopal priest who serves as the Canon for Evangelism & Discipleship Development for the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri. She is a graduate of Yale Divinity School where she won the Yale University Charles S. Mersick Prize for Public Address and Preaching and the Yale University E. William Muehl Award for Excellence in Preaching. She has taught undergraduate courses at the University of Indianapolis and has contributed to Lectionary Homiletics, the Young Clergy Women’s Project journal Fidelia’s Sisters, and other publications. She has served as a researcher and community ministry grant consultant for the Indianapolis Center for Congregations, is currently a staff writer for the Episcopal Digital Network’s Sermons That Work, and is an active participant in the activist clergy community for racial and economic justice in St. Louis. A communicator of the gospel at heart, she writes and teaches at Episcopal, United Methodist, and ELCA churches on a wide variety of topics including rethinking evangelism, stewardship, leadership, women’s theology of the body, mysticism, and spiritual development. When she’s not thinking about theology, particularly the intersection of evangelism and justice work (which is all the time, seriously), you’ll find her swing dancing. Find more of her work at her website Roof Crashers & Hem Grabbers (www.
Her ministries include:
- Discipleship Development
- Children & Youth
- Experimental Ministries/Missional Communities
- Fresh Start
- Ordination Process
- Ordination Redesign
- Re-Imagining Task Force
- Requiem or Renaissance
Canon Desiree BrattinCanon for Finance & Administration
314-231-1220, ext. 1371 |
Desiree has been a member of the Bishop's staff in the Diocese of Missouri since 1994. She has a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville and was given the title of Canon by Bishop Deon Johnson in 2020. She is married to Travis Brattin and has two children.
The Rev. Erin PickersgillMinistry Developer for Children and Youth
Erin was ordained a priest in December 2022 at Christ Church Cathedral. She grew up in Webster Groves, but has spent the last twenty years living and serving in different parts of the UK. What was meant to be a simple gap year in Belfast turned into half of her life in Northern Ireland and many different places in England.
After she graduated from MSU in Springfield with a degree in Arts and Letters, she worked and lived in neighborhoods in Belfast alongside a mission organization, whose emphasis was on peace and reconciliation. She mentored young leaders and traveled to places of conflict in the Middle East, Asia and Africa, teaching a curriculum on forgiveness through the International Forgiveness Institute.
Her first introduction to the Anglican communion was her involvement with a church plant in East Belfast called Wells. She married David, who’s English, and they moved around England, with their two young daughters. While her husband trained for the priesthood, she had some fun jobs like bakery apprentice, swimming instructor, and cafe barista/cook.
At the end of a three year course to become an Ignatian Spiritual director, Erin started to feel the Spirit’s invitation to the priesthood for herself. After a few years of discernment in the Church of England, Erin trained and finished her Masters degree in Theology, Ministry and Mission through St. Mellitus College in the East Midlands.
The pandemic became a time for her and her family to evaluate and consider where they would like to live for the next part of their lives, and St. Louis became an obvious spot to be closer to family and friends.
Erin loves writing poetry (badly), skateboarding (badly), wild swimming, binging mediocre tv, and trying new things. She feels incredibly blessed to be able to work with the Diocese of Missouri and thankful for the opportunity to grow, learn and serve here back in her hometown.
Susan G. RehkopfDiocesan Archivist & Registrar
314-231-1220, ext. 1375 |
Sue worked as a secretary in the diocesan office from 1972 to 1980. She left to work in bank marketing for 15 years, and returned to the diocese at the request of Bishop Rockwell in 2020. In between her time with the diocese, Sue was a consultant for marketing and product development. She set up three community historical society archives and taught basic archives management to those groups.
Sue is a member of St. John's Episcopal Church in Eolia.
Contact Sue for:
- Historical records, artifacts and photos
- Parish history; Diocesan organization and program history
- Baptismal and confirmation records, letters of transfer from closed churches
- Genealogical information
Tracy GrigsbyReceptionist & Administrative Assistant
314-231-1220, ext. 1300 |
Tracy has executed the duties required for the receptionist and administrative assistant for the Offices of the Bishop for 15 years. Prior to joining the Offices of the Bishop, Tracy was an Assistant Front Office Manager for Clarion Hotels, where she received the “Yes I Can” Award for her work ethic, and commitment to increasing the business and professional demeanor and attitude. In addition, Tracy was a Logistics Agent for Transentric, a subsidiary of the Union Pacific Corporation. Tracy’s duties included providing real-time visibility and logistical tracking to aerospace, barge, and trucking companies, and tracking railcar deliveries to Mexico and Canada.
Tracy has an Associates of Arts in Business degree from Western Internal University, and a Bachelor of Science in Business from the University of Phoenix.
Tracy's duties include:
- Conference room scheduling
- Courier requests
- Database (updates, additions, deletions)
- Office equipment manager
- Office supplies
- Track entry & exit of staff and visitors
- Support for the following groups:
- Diocesan Council
- Dismantling Racism Commission
- Standing Committee
Rita BensonFinance Assistant & Benefits Administration
314-231-1220, ext. 1384 |
Rita has worked for the Diocese of Missouri since 2011. She has a bachelor of science degree in business administration, with an emphasis in finance. Before coming to the diocese, Rita worked as a software computer specialist contractor for IBM and as an accounting coordinator for a local broadcasting company. Rita is married to Lewis Benson and the couple has two children and one grandson. Rita is from a large family and absolutely loves family gatherings!
Rita's duties include:
- Changes in health, life, and disability insurance benefits, open enrollment, CPG
- Changes in employee status
- Flexible Spending Accounts
- General check requests
- Accounts receivables and payables
- UTO Grants
- Diocesan program financial reports
- Parochial reports
- Background checks
- Diocesan payroll (not individual parish payroll)
Jillian SmithExecutive Assistant to the Bishop and Canon to the Ordinary
314-231-1220, ext. 1370 |
Jillian joined the Bishop's staff in 2017 as the Director of the Deaconess Anne House and began serving as Executive Assistant to the Bishop and Canon to the Ordinary in August 2019. Jillian has a Bachelor's degree in history, with a minor in sociology from the University of Evansville. She was a corps member of the first class at Deaconess Anne House, where she served with Episcopal City Mission and All Saints' Episcopal Church. After her internship with DAH, Jillian became the Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries at St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Ladue from 2014-2017. She is married to Anthony Cabrera.
Jillian's duties include:
- Appointments for the Bishop
- Appointments for the Canon to the Ordinary
- Lay licensing
- Remarriage petitions and authorizations
- Diocesan Confirmation service
- Bishop's visitations
- Renewal of ministry
- Letters Dimissory
- Chrism oil
- Supply Clergy list
- Clergy Retreats, Clergy Conference
- License to Officiate
- Non-parochial Reports
- Safeguarding God's Children
- Ordination Process Forms
Janis GreenbaumDirector of Communications
314-231-1220, ext. 1385 |
Janis became our diocesan communications director in 2019 after working for Grace Episcopal Church in Kirkwood and St. Martin's Episcopal Church in Ellisville. Prior to her church work, Janis worked as a television news producer. She has a Master's Degree in Public Affairs Reporting and a Bacholor's Degree in Broadcast Journalism. She and her husband Kurt Greenbaum live in the Tower Grove neighborhood of St. Louis and enjoy traveling throughout the Diocese to worship -- and write stories and take pictures! The couple has two grown children.
The best way to reach Janis is through her cell phone: 314-651-1843.
Janis' duties include:
- Weekly iSeek e-mail newsletter
- Weekly Clergy Connections newsletter
- Seek publication (printed)
- Convention journals
- Public relations
- Video and livestream production
- Diocesan branding
- Diocesan-wide communications support
AhSa-Ti Tyehimba-FordDigital Projects Manager
AhSa-Ti joined the diocesan communications team in the spring of 2021. She is a sound engineer, artistic activist and social media specialist with a Bachelor's degree in Sound Arts from Ex'pression College for Digital Arts in Emeryville, CA. AhSa-Ti's background spans across the multimedia spectrum having worked in film, television, live corporate events, theaters and festivals. Having worked with various artists, companies and organizations, AhSa-Ti brings her passion of artistry, technology and community activism to every project and production.
Bishop Deon is a dynamic and inspiring liturgist, writer, and speaker. This page is a collection of reflections, prayers, videos, and other musings by the Bishop.Read More »
Bishop Deon Johnson, the 11th Bishop of The Episcopal Diocese of Missouri, offers a new 11-minute (or less) podcast. The podcast is called 11 in 11.
Bishop Deon will offer reflections, scriptures, prayers, and conversations with special guests. A new episode will be released on the 11th and 22nd of every month. Share, see, and explore the Good News in this bi-weekly podcast.
Each …Read More »