The staff and leadership here at Friends are a dedicated group of servant leaders committed to the vision of living faithfully, loving limitlessly, and serving boldly.
Rev. Dr. Dan De Leon
Pastor Dan has served Friends Congregational Church, United Church of Christ (UCC), since September 1, 2005. During that time, his devotion to the inclusion of all people in the life and ministry of our church, his heart for youth being the future and present of the Church, and his passion for social justice that carries the congregation beyond the walls of our sanctuary have fostered the identity of Friends Church as a Gospel-rooted community that seeks to love God, love people, and love creation in all that we do. Whether he is in the pulpit preaching, in the classroom teaching, at the coffee shop listening, in the public square marching, in the sanctuary strumming guitar, or at the table of communion breaking bread and pouring the cup, Pastor Dan leads by demonstrating that it’s more than okay to be human, it’s altogether good.
In the College Station community known as “Aggieland,” Pastor Dan serves as an Aggie Ally, providing support for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students of Texas A&M University. In April of 2013, he was awarded the Phyllis R. Frye Advocacy Award by the Department of Multicultural Services at TAMU for showing “great leadership in the advancement of GLBTI (Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Intersex) civil rights at the infrastructural and/or interpersonal level.” He has also served on the Board for United Campus Ministry of Aggieland since 2005, which ministers to college students of the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the UCC at Texas A&M University and Blinn College of Bryan.
In service to the wider church, from 2013 to 2017, Pastor Dan served on the UCC’s South Central Conference Board of Directors as Vice President (2013-2015) and then President (2015-2017). He also served on the Nominating Committee for the National UCC from 2013 to 2017 as Vice Chair for the 2015-2016 biennium, and Chair for the 2016-2017 biennium.
Pastor Dan previously served as the Associate Minister to Youth at Highland Park Baptist Church in Austin, Texas, and, prior to that, as the Interim Youth Minister at First Baptist Church of Austin. He holds a Bachelor of Journalism in Public Relations from the University of Texas at Austin, as well as a Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry from Brite Divinity School at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas. He was ordained into the ministry of the Gospel of Jesus Christ on January 20, 2002.
Rev. De Leon is married to Stacy De Leon, and they are proud parents to son, Mac, born in March of 2005 and daughter Ruthie, born in January 2008.
Rev. Trent Williams
Pastor Trent began his ministry with Friends as Associate Pastor in 2016, although this is not his first time serving with us. He served as Pastoral Intern in 2006-07 during his final year of seminary.
A native of Waco, Texas, Trent attended Baylor University where he earned a BA in Religion and History. He pursued his Master of Divinity degree at TCU's Brite Divinity School, where he was awarded the Faculty Book Awards in Preaching and Pastoral Theology. Ordained in 2008 in the United Church of Christ, he served congregations in Pennsylvania and New Jersey before returning to Texas in 2016.
At Friends Church, Pastor Trent works closely with adult spiritual formation, stewardship and finance, communications, technology, and our small group ministry. He also enjoys preaching and worship leadership. In the wider church, he currently serves as the Vice President of the South Central Conference Board of Directors.
Trent is married to John Brady, a native of Boston, Mass., and together they make their home in Bryan along with their dog, Riley. Trent and John enjoy volunteering every summer with the American Legion Boys' State program in John's native Massachusetts. In his spare time, Trent enjoys movies, used book stores, college football, and classic cars.
Director of Music Ministries
A native of Iowa, Chris Hoffman - tenor, pianist, and conductor -made his Carnegie Hall debut at the age of 18, singing vocal jazz. Since then, he has graduated with a Master’s degree in vocal performance and has enjoyed an operatic and piano performance career that has led him to perform in 13 countries. Locally, many have seen him as a soloist with the Brazos Valley Symphony Orchestra in its performances of operatic and oratorio masterworks. As a pianist, Mr. Hoffman has served as the pianist with the Texas A&M Century Singers and Women’s Chorus for three years, and served as the pianist for the Brazos Valley Chorale for seven years. He is frequently called upon to do collaborative work with other musicians in the Brazos Valley, and has assisted in many recitals and chamber music concerts. Mr. Hoffman was also on faculty at Blinn College in Bryan for eight years, where he taught Music Appreciation classes and started and developed the campus’ Choir and Private Voice Study programs. Mr. Hoffman has also served as the music director with The Theatre Company in Bryan, coaching vocals and conducting shows from behind the piano.
Mr. Hoffman has served at Friends Church since 2006. As the Director of Music Ministries, his responsibilities include conducting the Chancel Choir, Children’s Choir, and Handbell Choir ensembles. Highlights include conducting Rutter’s Magnificat, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Mozart’s Requiem for the Christmas and Good Friday Cantatas.
Mr. Hoffman currently maintains a private voice and piano studio, and continues to perform in the Brazos Valley, and around the country. He resides in College Station with his husband Matt and their canine children.
Pastoral Intern (she/her/they/them)
Brooke is a Member-in-Discernment with the Heart of Texas Association of the United Church of Christ, and is currently doing supervised ministry at Friends Church while pursuing an M.Div. through Brite Divinity School. Brooke has been actively engaged with the Friends community since 2017, and has enjoyed teaching Sunday school, singing in the choir, and being involved with the youth group. Brooke currently serves on the Board of Directors for the UCC South Central Conference, representing youth and young adults.
Brooke was born and raised in College Station, and received a BA in International Studies and French from the University of North Texas. In the wider community, Brooke co-facilitates a local LGBTQ+ youth support group offered by the Pride Community Center.