The Rev. Dr. Charlene Han Powell is a proud second-generation Korean American; honored daughter of immigrants, Wha Lim Han and Dr. Hye Kyung Kim; beloved wife of her high school sweetheart, Jordan Powell; and adoring mother of her two daughters, Amelie Han and Noa Han. A native of the East Bay, Charlene is a life-long fan of the Oakland A’s.
After graduating from University of California San Diego with a degree in Religious Studies and a minor in dance, Charlene headed east to attend Princeton Theological Seminary. During her time there, she not only felt called to serve as a pastor in the Presbyterian church, she also discovered that her great-grandfather was one of the first ordained Presbyterian ministers in Korea.
Building on her passion to help people understand and articulate their faith in a diverse, multicultural, multifaith world, Charlene received a Doctor of Ministry from New York Theological Seminary. Her dissertation focused on the intersection of faith and culture for millennials and offered a pedagogical process by which members of this generation could explore their own beliefs and questions with the goal of writing their own confession of faith.
Charlene has guest preached and lectured at churches, seminaries, and conferences across the country including Evolving Faith Conference, Princeton Theological Seminary, Montreat Conference Center, the Institute for Youth Ministry, and Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church. She has served on the strategy team of Next Church, the national movement centered around envisioning a more diverse, collaborate and relational future for the Presbyterian Church (USA).
Charlene served as the Executive Pastor and the Associate Pastor for Education and Engagement at Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church in New York City from 2010-2020. She currently serves as the Senior Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley.