Brady Named Next District Superintendent for the Central Valley District
December 05, 2013
Bishop Warner H. Brown, Jr., has named the Rev. Debra L. Brady to be the next District Superintendent for the Central Valley District. Brady, who will assume the post July 1, 2014, will succeed the Rev. Mariellen Yoshino who has served in this capacity for seven years.
"Mariellen has been an outstanding Superintendent. She has fully embraced and supported the mission and cultural richness of the Central Valley. Debra will bring a deep understanding of the valley and its churches," said Bishop Warner H. Brown, Jr. "She is committed to continuing the ongoing vital ministries of the district churches," he added. "This change is a part of the succession plan the Cabinet is following in order to ensure continuity of leadership, and alignment to the Conference mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world."
Brady is a native of Boron, California in Eastern Kern County.
Brady says, "I have fallen in love with California's San Joaquin Valley and the people who inhabit this rich geography." She added, "I admire the ethic of pragmatism, sense of community, and humble spirit that dominate valley culture."
Brady praises the work of her predecessor, "Mariellen has been doing such a great job in helping us rethink church as we convey the Gospel of Jesus through the Wesleyan approach to discipleship." She added, "I look forward to continuing and building upon what she has done. It is an honor to have this opportunity to continue to serve here among colleagues and church leaders I admire so much, and yet I cannot do it alone."
Bishop Brown says, "I recognize this change in the Cabinet does not meet the goals for diversity in leadership to which we are committed." He added, "Our goal to be diverse was a part of our deliberation, but the missional needs of local churches had to be balanced with the needs of the Annual Conference. It is my commitment that the next Cabinet appointment will increase the ethnic and cultural diversity of our Conference team. I am already working towards that objective."
Brady earned a Bachelor of Science degree from UCLA in psychobiology and spent 11 years in the corporate world in various capacities with Pacific Bell before responding to a call to pastoral ministry. She is a 1994 graduate of the Pacific School of Religion (PSR) and completed field education with the Walnut Creek UMC. After graduation from PSR, she served as an Associate Pastor for the San Ramon Valley UMC in Alamo for eight years before becoming the Senior Pastor of Modesto First UMC for 11 years.
In her local church ministry, her passions are worship, small group ministry, and urban ministry with those who struggle with mental illness, addictions, and poverty. Brady has served the Annual Conference on the Evangelism Committee, Worship Task Force, Conference Council on Finance and Administration, and as the Convener of the Core Team. She has also served as a Mentor for Residents in Ministry in the Central Valley and as a Spiritual Director for The Walk to Emmaus and Chrysalis.
Brady is married to Steve Veglia and has two adult step-children.
Currently on a one-year sabbatical, her plans include a certification program with The Enneagram Institute and completing a 500-mile walking pilgrimage this spring with her husband across northern Spain on El Camino de Santiago. Brady has been an active Rotarian for over eight years and is a Senior Fellow of the American Leadership Forum, Great Valley Chapter.