United Theological Seminary

Jia Starr Brown

Adjunct Professor

Pastor Jia Starr Brown is the senior pastor of First Covenant Church in Minneapolis. Her experience in community education, engagement, and outreach encompass more than 20 years.

Trilingual, she has served as a diversity trainer and community educator, continuing to be an advocate for underrepresented and marginalized communities. Starr Brown’s passion to increase accessibility of affordable academic and enrichment opportunities for all youth and families led her to design—and facilitate—more than 160 educational programs in the Twin Cities, receiving numerous commendations including but not limited to: a Congressional Award for her service, the Frederick Buechner Preaching Award, and the MN African American Heritage Calendar Award.

Upon receiving the call to serve God and the Church, Starr Brown received her Master of Divinity from Luther Seminary (MN) and immediately entered pastoral ministry. She is currently a Ph.D. student, with her heart at the intersection of religion and education—studying those within marginalized populations who resist systemic and cultural forces to participate in their own oppression, particularly within faith communities.

Starr Brown is married to her incredible wife Jennifer, and is the mother of five inspiring children ranging in age from 14-25 years old. The family is rounded out by two cats, Sherlock and Serena.


M.Div. Congregational, Mission and Leadership, Luther Theological Seminary
B.S. Liberal Studies, National University