New reverend joins Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in San Luis Obispo

The Rev. Rod Richards, who has served for the past nine years as a Unitarian Universalist minister in Arizona, will take over the Unitarian fellowship in San Luis Obispo this month.

Richards, 52, will replace the Rev. Sean Parker Dennison, who is moving on to a congregation in McHenry, Ill., after two years here.

A 2001 graduate of the United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities in Minnesota, Richards worked previously in the book business, and as a nursing assistant and Web programmer. He hosted a radio show in Bisbee, Ariz., for five years.

Richards and his wife, Hanje, have a son, Jack, who lives in Minneapolis.

Richards takes over a 190-member congregation that earlier this year moved into a church at 2201 Lawton St., across the street from Meadow Park.

“This is a congregation with a proud history of community involvement and a deep commitment to finding compassionate ways to respond to the present moment,” Richards said.

Established in 1952, the local congregation is known for its social activism, especially on issues of homelessness, marriage equality and immigration reform. It describes itself as a strong ally of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, and it is a founding member of the interfaith People of Faith for Justice.

For more information, go to www.uuslo.org.