Jodi Tonarelli is my guest this week, and it’s an honor to have her on the podcast.  Her background in broadcast journalism (and a lot of prayers) led her to the role of Executive Pastor at The Ridge Community Church, where Mark Weigt is the lead pastor. You can hear my conversation with Mark on the podcast here. I enjoyed hearing her take on what an executive pastor does and her journey navigating that role.

There were some great takeaways from this conversation: From how to seek God before stepping into a new role to what leaders can do to create a more inclusive workplace. I’m telling you, what you’ll learn from her when it comes to leadership will benefit you no matter what you do.

Special thanks to Stadia Church Planting for sponsoring this week’s episode!


About Jodi Tonarelli – 2:48

  • How she got started at The Ridge.
  • Her background in Broadcast Journalism
  • What the transition from working outside of the church to working in the church was like for Jodi.

Being an Executive Pastor – 12:07

  • What goes into being an executive pastor?
  • Learning to balance the goals and the mission.
  • Do’s and Don’ts for being an executive pastor.

Leaving the Door Open – 26:30

  • Wrestling through what being a woman in her role means.
  • What male pastors can do to better empower women.
  • How to manage wearing multiple hats in your organization.


About Our Guest

Jodi Tonarelli spent 15 years as a radio news reporter and anchor in cities like Los Angeles and Milwaukee before God called her into ministry at The Ridge Community Church. She’s been on staff more than 6-years now, serving first as Communications Director, then Executive Director of Experience, and most recently, Executive Pastor. Jodi’s goal is to lead a staff that is thriving as they serve because they feel equipped, cared for, and challenged to excel in their God-given calling. She supports Lead Pastor Mark Weigt by driving the execution of The Ridge’s vision: to bring the hope of Jesus into every home.

Some other rewarding pieces of her role: spearheading staff culture and development, breaking silos and advocating for collaboration, and fostering creativity and innovation.

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