Paul Atwater is the founding pastor of North River Church in Pembroke MA, a role he has held since 1989. He has been married to his best friend, Susan, since 1981. They have two adult daughters, one son-in-law, and a cute little dachshund named Copper. Paul is a graduate of Wheaton College (B.A.) and Denver Seminary (M.Div.), where he is currently a D.Min. candidate. He has served on the Wheaton College Leadership Council, the board for New Hope Correctional Ministry, and was a contributing editor for Leadership Journal. He has been a monthly speaker at the Thursday Morning Men’s Breakfast in Boston for more than a decade.
Paul loves going on long walks, hikes and traveling with Sue. He gets excited when sharing the gospel of God’s grace with people who have lost hope or who never realized how profoundly God loves us.
He believes that the local church is still God’s primary tool for delivering the hope, love and grace of God that transforms lives. He is motivated by the growing opportunity that Posture Shift has in helping pastors and church leaders discover how to be faithful to Scripture in regard to marriage and sexuality while radically loving LGBT+ people in the church.
His favorite quote comes from Dr. Tim Keller: “The gospel is this: We are more sinful than we ever believed, and we are more loved and accepted than we ever dared believe.”
Founder & President
Bill Henson founded Posture Shift Ministries, Inc. in 2006. Our ministry is writing a new church history to ensure that Christian communities of faith and homes are safe for LGBT+ family and friends. Bill is creator of Posture Shift and author of Guiding Families. Posture Shift is a credentialed missional training curriculum on LGBT+ inclusion and care. Over 100,000 church, school and youth leaders have experienced Posture Shift across the globe. Guiding Families is a best practice relational care plan that Bill wrote after working with thousands of families and LGBT+ youth. Safe churches and homes allow LGBT+ people to grow in trusting and knowing Jesus Christ. The board and teaching staff of Posture Shift Ministries, Inc. hold to a traditional biblical view.
"I formed Posture Shift after witnessing the impact of mistreatment and trauma that many LGBT+ youth experience growing up. I am passionate about fostering safe churches and homes. It is a wonderful privilege to train and consult church leaders around the world - as well as serve LGBT+ people of all ages and provide thoughtful guidance for their families. The gospel calls us to faithfully honor God - and importantly, to radically love people."
More about Bill: Enjoys family time, special dinners, adventure, travel and staying healthy. Has two beloved young adult children with his wife Kang.
Dr. Ray Pendleton
Board Chairman Emeritus
Dr. Raymond Pendleton served as Posture Shift’s board chairman from its inception until 2021 and has played an integral role in growth of the ministry.
Dr. Pendleton is a licensed Clinical Psychologist who is a member of the American Psychological Association and the Massachusetts Psychological Association. He currently serves as Assistant Rector, Director of Pastoral Care and Healing Ministry at Christ the Redeemer Church in Danvers, MA. He recently retired after 44 years as a full time faculty member at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. During his tenure he served as Senior Professor of Pastoral Care, Director of the Mentored Ministry Program, and with colleague Dr. Pablo Polischuk established the seminary's Master of Arts in Counseling Program.
Dr. Pendleton spends much of his time with his wife of 61 years, Jan, their two daughters and four grandchildren. He also enjoys golf, music and cooking.
Jessica helps smooth the running of operations and the behind the scenes logistics of Posture Shift. She oversees administration, human resources, database management, outsource partnerships, platform connectivity and functionality, merchant operations, and constituent relations.
Jessica holds a BS in Education from Butler University and has been involved with nonprofit management since the inception of her career. She brings with her nearly 15 years of experience in administration, volunteer management, donor relations and programming.
“I believe in non-judgmental acceptance, kindness, and helpfulness, and I am so grateful to have the opportunity to be a part of an organization that helps those who seek to better understand and practice unconditional love.”
More about Jessica: Native Hoosier turned Texan. Mom of two. Former teacher and food banker. Enjoys exploration, competition, laughter and organized chaos.
Director of Donor Relations
Gender Identity Expert
Lesli serves as Director of Donor Relations, as well as Posture Shift's resident Gender Identity Expert. They ensure that our Donor Partners know just how grateful we are for their generous support. They also are working to expand our donor base by originating new Donor Partners. If you'd like to support Posture Shift, contact Lesli today. They also assist the president in managing Guiding Families Direct Care for Transgender young people and their families.
Prior to joining the Posture Shift team, Lesli spent 15 years touring the US and Europe as Production Stage Manager for numerous Broadway musicals, ballets and plays. They recently began pursuing their MDiv in Theology and Biblical Studies.
"Over the past decade I have watched the paradigm of Posture Shift equip church leaders and parents. Posture Shift has helped to create safe homes, churches, schools, and camps for LGBT+ people while holding to traditional beliefs. I have seen its teachings restore relationships, save lives, and reunite families. Most importantly I have witnessed the gospel lived out in miraculous ways."
More about Lesli: Lives in Tennessee. Huge New England Patriots fan. Loves Broadway.
Posture Shift Spanish Instructor
Josh spearheads the creation and updates to all of Posture Shift's resources in English and Spanish, and also co-teaches our missional training curriculum with Bill around North and South America. He also provides strategic support to Lesli, our Director of Donor Relations.
Josh holds a BA in Biblical Studies from Palm Beach Atlantic University, MA in Old Testament and Hebrew from Nyack College, and is currently pursuing his DMin from Kairos University. Prior to joining the Posture Shift team, he was a ministry leader in a national church denomination in the country of Colombia for eight years.
"I am passionate about the intersection of faith, sexuality and gender. It is purposeful and rewarding to be part of an organization that is so committed to helping church leaders make faith communities more inclusive for LGBT+ people."
More about Josh: Lives in West Palm Beach, FL with his family. An avid Golden Girls fan. Loves the beach.