Rev. Thomas Disrud was called to serve as Associate Minister of Portland’s First Unitarian Church in 1995. In that position, he was principally the chief administrator of the church, responsible for supervising the staff and the wide variety of church programs and activities. He also oversees the pastoral care ministry, which includes working with a gifted team of lay ministers. Rev. Disrud is frequently called upon to officiate at rites of passage for members of the congregation, such as weddings and memorial services. He served as Acting Senior Minister from 2009-2010, and led the congregation as the search for a new senior minister was conducted.
Disrud hails from Wisconsin and was raised in the Lutheran tradition. He graduated from Marquette University with a B.A. degree in Journalism and Philosophy. His first career was as an editor at the Duluth, Minnesota, News-Tribune. During that time he became involved with union organizing and was an officer for the local Newspaper Guild. It was also during this chapter that he became a Unitarian Universalist and discerned a call to ministry.
Rev. Disrud is a graduate of Starr King School for the Ministry in Berkeley, California. He received his Master of Divinity degree in 1995, and currently serves on the Board of Trustees at Starr King. He served as Chair of the Board from 2007-2011. Prior to that position, he served as the President of the school’s Graduates Association. In 2003 Rev. Disrud completed an intensive course of study in spiritual direction at the Mercy Center in Burlingame, California.