church council chair:

Ginny Brideau

Ginny Brideau is a Community Relations Manager for Metro.  She works in Construction Relations, and is responsible for the Visual Communications and Social Media Programming for Capital Projects. Working since 15, Ginny has washed dishes, bagged groceries, answered phones, did some filing, made photocopies and a lot of lattes and mochas, and worked with planners and construction crews, all in an effort to get to where she is today: very busy.

Ginny has  Masters in Public Policy, a Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy degrees, and a High School diploma to boot.  She’s originally from Western Washington, even further west of Seattle, and moved to California after seeing an inspiring music video by Hole about Malibu. She enjoys Meet the Press and solving the world's problems over coffee.

Ginny is married to Alex Brideau III, they met when he came into volunteer for presidential campaign, while she was actually working for a senate campaign. She realized she really needed him when she attempted to coordinate a state party convention all by herself.  Like most days, he’s her lifesaver. Iolani Brideau who just turned 8, is a new skateboarder. In their spare time they like to camp, travel, take cruises and train trips. And, yes - they all live in a tiny apartment in Downtown Los Angeles


Trustees chair:

Byron Hayes Jr.

Byron Hayes is a lawyer, now retired from active practice.

For many years he has actively assisted United Methodist Churches and Agencies, including especially Los Angeles First United Methodist Church, with legal and business problems. He is a member of the Lawyers Committee of the California-Pacific Annual Conference of the UMC. He and his wife, DeAnne Saliba Hayes, are active in other community activities.

Byron practiced law downtown as a transactional partner specializing in real estate, business corporation and non-profit corporation law in a medium sized law firm for 40 years. Byron graduated from Pomona College (B.A., Magna Cum Laude, 1956) and Harvard Law School (L.L.B., Cum Laude, 1959).


finance chair:

Rick Rives

Rick is a long time member of the United Methodist Church and is excited to serve on the First Church Council as Finance Chair. He Brings over 25 years of business experience having worked for companies such as AT&T, Verizon and Sylvan Learning Systems. 

In addition to his activities with First Church, Rick is active in the Recovery community and enjoys the theatre, music and hiking.



Sara Munshin

Sara Munshin is retired from working as a mathematics educator for the Los Angeles Unified School District. In retirement she has found many satisfying volunteer opportunities, including being a member of the South Pasadena Rotary Club, a Board member of the United Methodist Urban Foundation, and participating in United Methodist Women at local, district and conference levels. She enjoys traveling and attending cultural events.


courageous arts chair:

Debbie Bowlus

Born and raised in California with background in management, legal administration, owner and operation of profit and non-profit businesses, performing arts management and professional care of children.

Faith and serving others has always been a strong presence in my life, so it is with a grateful and joyful heart that my spiritual journey has lead me to be a part of this ministry.


compassionate arts chair:

Tom Grode

Tom was a member of First Lutheran Church of Venice for ten years and so the Moravians are a nice bridge from Lutheranism to Methodism.  He is an honorary member through a sacred ceremony of the Tongva, Native American indigenous people of Los Angeles.  He lived inside Union Rescue Mission at the center of Skid Row for three years.  His desire is to see greater awareness of the spiritual and creative expression in the Skid Row community and so is honored to be the Skid Row Liaison for Compassion and the Arts.


lay leader:

Alex Brideau III

A longtime resident of Downtown LA, Alex works for the City of Los Angeles's Bureau of Sanitation, overseeing recycling in city facilities. He volunteers with the Rotary Club of Downtown LA, Girl Scout Troop 16155, and Los Angeles First UMC. In his remaining free time, Alex enjoys camping, graphic design, sustainability, and attending Dodgers, Sparks, and LAFC games.

A member of a car-free DTLA household, Alex enjoys being able to walk to church on Sundays with his wife, Ginny, and daughter, Iolani. He can be often be found at church services eating a donut with a guilty look on his face.