SOLANO COMMUNITY CHURCH STAFF

  • Andrew Hoffman - Lead Pastor

    Pastor Andrew Hoffman and his wife, Jodie, live in Albany, Calif. with their four kids. His chief ministry desire is to help people find and follow Christ. Andrew received his M.Div. at Trinity International University and also completed an M.A. in New Testament at Trinity, under the direction of noted theologian D.A. Carson. He holds degrees in literature and music from U.C. Santa Barbara and is a Church Planting Coach for churches throughout Northern California and Nevada. In addition to ministry, Andrew is passionate about family, friends, cycling and reading. 

    Email: ahoffman at solanochurch.org

  • Danté Upshaw - Associate Pastor for Discipleship

    Danté committed his life to the Lord while attending Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA as a Theater and Communications student. He went on to study pastoral ministry at Moody Bible Institute, and Evangelism and Spiritual Formation at Wheaton College. He was ordained with the Evangelical Free Church in 2007. In 1998, Danté married Beverly and together they have three teenage children. Their family is passionate about the arts, and finds delight in spending time together taking Sabbath rest, or engaging others through hospitality. Danté joined the Solano staff after having served in multiple churches and settings in Atlanta, Chicago and Minneapolis. He spent nine years serving the Evangelical Free Church as National Director of African-American Ministries, and most recently spent five years serving as the Dean of Students and Director of Gospel Arts Ministry at an inner-city school. Along with his sincere love for the Lord and shepherd’s heart for people, Danté brings a wealth of ministry experience to the Solano team.

    Email: dante at solanochurch.org

  • Jackie Knapp - Director of Children's Ministry & Discipleship

    Jackie grew up in a Christian home and came to faith in High School. She has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Illinois, Champagne-Urbana and a Master of Arts in Counseling from Master’s College. Jackie has studied child development and led children’s ministry in both the local church setting and the international missions setting. She also has experience as a nanny. From 2005-2013, Jackie worked with college students as Resident Director at Master’s College and as Campus Ministries Director at University Reformed Church in East Lansing, MI. Jackie will be working half-time with Solano Community Church while also pursuing a call to writing. 

    Email: jackie at solanochurch.org

  • Miguel Castuera - Director of Creative Arts & Development

    Miguel was born in Burbank, California, to a Mexican immigrant family. He and his sister, Lily, both learned much of their English by watching Sesame Street. He began vocational ministry at the age of 17 at his home church in Glendora, California. During that time, he completed a B.A. in Music at U.C. Riverside. He enjoys spicy food, cycling, and socializing with all kinds of people. Miguel sees music as an important tool for the spread of the gospel in the Bay Area.

    Email: miguel at solanochurch.org

  • Jessie Palmatier - Children's Ministry & Admin Coordinator

    Jessie is a Bay Area transplant from the east coast, and fell in love with the Bay Area while working in urban missions during college. She loves working with kids and is passionate about changing communities by empowering individuals. Her goal is to empower kids to be loving people with deep relationships with Christ who work toward making their world a better place. When she's not hanging out with kids, Jessie loves to spend time with friends and family, read and write, walk and run, make schedules and lists, and pet dogs.

    Email: jessie at solanochurch.org

  • Jodie Hoffman - Director of Youth Ministry

    Jodie is a native of Berkeley CA. Born and raised here, she knows and appreciates the Bay Area, yet also remembers the struggle to find Christian peers and community growing up here. She teaches Piano and got her education from UC Santa Barbara and Northwestern University. She has lived in and participated in missions in other countries and is passionate about God’s love of unity and variety- language, culture, and color. Her desire and passionate prayer is to help the next generation understand their true identity as image-bearers of God, desire intimacy with him, and know the love of Jesus that surpasses knowledge! 

    Email: jodie@solanochurch.org

  • Martin Kang -  Operations & Administration Manager

    Simultaneously born with his brother into a Christian home in Southern California, Martin came to personally know Jesus as a sophomore in high school. He spent a few formatively painful years living in Korea, went to Arcadia High School, came up to the Bay Area to attend Laney College and transferred to UC Berkeley to study American Studies. Of the many jobs he’s had he enjoyed being a church ministry director and making photocopies the most. There are far too many books, succulents, shoes, and coffee-related supplies in his apartment--but he thoroughly enjoys them all. 

    Email: martin@solanochurch.org

  • Ryan Julius -  Pastoral Intern

    Ryan grew up in Napa, CA. While he was raised in a Christian home, it wasn’t until a missions trip to Zimbabwe when he was 17 that he really began to follow Jesus. After studying chemistry at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Ryan moved to The Bay to work with Cru at UC Berkeley. While working with Cru, he was able to develop skills in evangelism, discipleship, and missions. However, his true passion is for the local church, so after a few years with Cru he transitioned into serving through Solano. He is excited to learn how to serve through the local church and hopes to someday multiply churches in countries where there is less access to the gospel. Ryan loves basketball, music, reading, video games, and his mega awesome wife Melody.

    Email: ryan@solanochurch.org