Rev. Leonard Nielson has been the pastor of Christ Presbyterian Church in San Leandro for more than ten years. He chaired the Finance and Property Committee of the Presbytery for several years. In his present staff position at Presbytery (as well as with other churches and non-profits on a consulting basis) he specializes in helping congregations re-examine their finance and property resources within the context of their present mission, as well as helping congregations understand their role as trustees for both the local church and for the larger church (PCUSA).
He was ordained as a ruling elder in 1983 while pursuing his ministry calling on an avocational basis. He started in ministry in 1977 as a youth leader, later working as a lay counselor. Alongside his ministry work he maintained a secular career in architecture and construction for more than forty five years. He was a founding member of the original Habitat for Humanity affiliate in the Bay area, working as their pro-bono general contractor for several years. He is also a professional mediator, expert witness in the construction field, and a licensed contractor. He is a fourth generation Californian, having grown up in Bayside CA (Humboldt County), then later going to Junior and Senior High School in Los Altos CA. He is a graduate of UC Berkeley (BA Architecture) and SFTS (MDiv).