Sandals Church

Riverside, CA


In 1997, Pastor Matt Brown shared his dream to plant a church where people could be real with themselves, God and others with his boss. He left that meeting without a job and soon moved to Riverside with his wife Tammy and infant daughter with the goal of connecting with former friends and a desire to share Christ with 75 people.

That summer, Matt and Tammy met in their living room with eight other people, including Matt and Tammy’s nine-month-old daughter, to begin the process of planting what is now Sandals Church. As God brought more people and fellow churches lent a hand, Sandals Church grew and moved from apartment recreation centers to church basements to the California Baptist University gymnasium while small groups formed, baptisms took place and lives were changed by God.

By Easter 2007, nearly ten years after the first living room meeting, the congregation of Sandals Church surpassed 2,000 people. That year, church leadership decided to purchase a building and move Sandals Church to its own property. With only a few months remaining on the lease at CBU, God opened the door for the purchase of the first building. On October 31, 2010 Sandals Church celebrated its first service in its own building at 150 Palmyrita Avenue in Riverside - now it’s Hunter Park campus. Two years later, Sandals Church grew to 5,000 people in regular attendance and launched its first satellite location in the Woodcrest neighborhood of Riverside.

Today, Sandals Church has since opened another six locations across Riverside and San Bernardino counties and now serves an average of 10,000 people every weekend - including a fast-growing online campus. In October 2018, Sandals launched their Momentum Project capital campaign with a goal to raise $10 million that will continue to fund the big vision that God has given them. Included in that vision are the following goals and initiatives:

  • Launch 500 locations. They're strategically working to launch campuses, house churches, etc. all over the country.
  • One of their strategic initiatives is to redeem dying churches everywhere so they can impact their communities for the next generation. To date, they've done this successfully more than once!
  • Send 100 long-term missionaries out to a specific country.
  • Heavily focusing on digital reach and everything related to delivering world-class discipleship content and teaching that touches people across the world.
  • Locally, Sandals Church is known for providing practical help in the community, for coming together as a church to create life-changing moments for families in difficult times. At each of their campuses, they are known as the church who will “let anyone in” - whatever your lifestyle has been, there’s a place for you at Sandals. Thousands of people continue to meet Jesus and experience the life-change every year as a result of their worship services, various ministries, and small groups at Sandals Church.


    At its core, Sandals Church’s passion is to help move people toward honest and real conversations in the context of relationships where they can find meaningful answers to the questions or objections they have toward Jesus and/or the Christian faith. They are passionate about loving people right where they are, regardless of how they think or feel about Jesus or his church. This vision isn't just something they put on a banner, it is woven into their DNA and lived out by their dedicated staff.

    We're all about being real with ourselves, God and others.

    Real With Ourselves

    The beginning of being real is to start seeing ourselves as Jesus sees us. The truth is that God made us in his image, loves us deeply, and has a purpose for our lives. We are deeply ruined by sin. Yet, God still deeply loves us.

    Real With God

    For many of us, the struggle to be real comes from a feeling of unworthiness and a belief that God wouldn’t want us the way we are right now. The Bible tells us that nothing could be further from the truth. God created us, loves us, sent his son to die in our place for our sins and wants to help us become more like him. When we believe this, we start to get “real” with God.

    Real With Others

    It’s okay to not be okay. Being real with others begins with understanding that we should not hide our hurts and our struggles. The Bible tells us to confess our sins and shortcomings to one another because in doing so we will have healing and power. Christ-centered community offers you strength in numbers, healing and encouragement to follow Jesus more fully.

    Discover more about Sandals Church's doctrine HERE.


    Matt Brown is the founding and lead pastor of Sandals Church. He and his wife Tammy started Sandals Church in their Riverside, California living room in 1997. Matt's teaching style is engaging, clear, easy to apply, and contextual. His approach is disarming, and clearly, God has raised him up to be a powerful, leading voice in our culture. Overall, the leadership model at Sandals is a pastor-led church with 2 hands on the wheel. In this way, Pastor Matt provides vision and direction while deferring to the gifting of those he has brought into leadership. Evidence of this is in the strength of the Executive Leadership Team surrounding him at Sandals Church.

    Executive Pastors, Dan Zimbardi, Jon Brown, Adam Workman, and Executive Director, Brian Chelette, all bring very complementary gifts to Pastor Matt and a deep bench of skill and maturity to the staff. Their “executive leadership dynamic,” along with their high output and productivity as leaders, adds value and models healthy leadership in ways that ripple out and shape the broader culture of leadership in positive ways. There is a high level of authenticity and believability from leadership that inspires trust.

    Pastor Matt is also very involved in designing series concepts and content. He leads the collaboration at the ideation phase, ensuring the overall vision and feel reflects the unique vision and values of Sandals church. At times, he may speak into the details of specific services, but does not typically design them. Because of this, it is vital for the new Sr. Director of Creative Services to be secure in who they are as they sit in the room as a contributor among such strong leadership.

    The shared-space nature of the offices facilitates interaction, relationship, and cross-departmental integration. The staff is aligned around an intuitive understanding of what top-tier priorities are for ministry programming. Overall, the leadership of Sandals is exceptionally healthy. Honesty and candor alongside deep care and support are immediately evident in the staff culture. Soul Care and pursuing spiritual health is a big focus of Sandals Church staff and they have dedicated, trained people on their team to help staff navigate the various challenges they face as leaders in the church.


    Since Matt Brown and his wife, Tammy, started Sandals Church in their Riverside, California living room in 1997 they have experienced exponential growth. Today, Sandals Church is a thriving multi-site church in Southern California with campuses in the following locales:

  • The new Senior Director of Creative Services will work out of the offices located at the Hunter Park campus in Riverside. The community of Riverside offers a vibrant lifestyle for both your personal and professional life: thriving education institutions for all ages, a variety of parks and spaces, and its widely-recognized commitment to culture and the arts.

    Southern California is one of the most desirable places to live in the world. This region offers breath-taking views, a consistently comfortable climate year-round, and the kinds of opportunities that continue to draw people from all walks of life and backgrounds. Sandals Church's demographic is growing in their reflection of this diversity in both the staff and the church as a whole. A range of ages call Sandals home, but mostly leans toward younger families with 54% of those they're reaching being age 35 or younger.

    Sandals Church is excited about the growing racial diversity amongst those who call the church home and is hoping for even more in the future. Because Sandals Church is spread out and so close to the thriving metro area of Los Angeles, the potential reach to the unreached, unchurched, de-churched is seemingly unlimited.


    Joining the team at Sandals Church is going to be like nothing you've ever done before. Sure we've got competitive pay, great benefits and perks, but we've also created an environment like no other. - Sandals staff member

    Creativity and innovation are defining characteristics of the ethos at Sandals Church. Because of this DNA, Sandals Church is often on the leading edge of creative expression in the Church. The new Senior Director of Creative Services must naturally resonate with Sandals Church's commitment to producing great work in a culture that is less "copy and paste" and more "create and innovate."

    When it comes to filling a need in the organization, they never simply look for someone to do a job, but for the next person to join their team. They're passionate about hiring people who want to work hard and can't get enough of the vision to be "real with ourselves, God, and others."

    Sandal's philosophy when it comes to hiring staff is, "We hire people, not positions."

    Now is the perfect time to join in what's happening at Sandal's Church. Their exponential growth is evidence of a healthy culture where people always bring their best and confidently try new things in a context that provides plenty of room for growth. Joining the team at Sandals will provide you with a new level of challenge, but also the development necessary to do even better. The team at Sandals Church believes that the best work they do is not when they're pursuing a mark, but when they are authentically pursuing what they are most passionate about. This has created a remarkable culture that's distinctly marked by learning, exploration, curiosity, evaluating, and improving everything they do.

    This is an environment where employees say things like,

    "Being on staff at Sandals Church is the most challenging and rewarding work I have ever done. Not to mention you get the amazing opportunity to work alongside some of the most talented and inspiring people. They are not just your co-workers, but your friends! There's just nothing else like it!"

    Their current Creative Services team is well staffed with those who excel at getting things done. They need an experienced leader with a blend of high-level artistic direction along with the necessary skills to develop and lead the following teams and areas:

  • Marketing & Communications
  • Branding
  • Series Development
  • Video
  • Production
  • Visual team (Design and Environments)
  • Additionally, this role will require managing outside vendors to support series development, campaigns, and branding initiatives.
  • The Senior Director of Creative Services will be someone who knows how to look at the entire scope of creative communication from inception to delivery, ensuring the brand of Sandals Church is evident in all they do while innovation and creativity flourish.


    The Senior Director of Creative Services plays a vital role in fulfilling Sandals Church's creative vision. This role requires proficiency in management to lead a multi-disciplinary team responsible for Sandals Church's experiences—both physical and digital environments. Primarily, the Senior Director of Creative Services will relate closely with the Executive Leadership team to conceive and implement strategies that amplify the priorities and passions of Sandals Church. This includes developing and leading the staff and teams responsible for creative content and production at weekend services and special events across the organization.

    This role is also responsible for keeping Sandals Church's creative elements innovative, intentional, engaging and transformational. All elements should be planned with intentionality and executed with excellence. The Senior Director of Creative Services will be responsible for leading a team that delivers engaging digital and print collateral that tells a compelling story. The successful candidate will work closely with the design, graphic arts and marketing personnel to deliver content consistent with the brand, ethos, and culture at Sandals Church.


    Communications (Marketing/Graphics/Web/Branding)

    Visual (Physical Spaces/Environments and Overall Brand Management)

    Production/Technical (Live Audio/Video/Lighting/Stage Design)

    Sermon Series (Working closely with Pastor Matt to ideate and implement creative message content)


  • Lead the creative vision and ministry of Sandals Church.
  • Oversee the Creative Services Staff (see above).
  • Build, lead, develop, and shepherd creative team leaders as they lead the teams who execute day to day creative initiatives.
  • Manage projects and timelines with the Creative Services Team.
  • Lead innovative, engaging creative meetings and translate ideas generated into completed and effective services, events, elements and moments.
  • Build and manage a recruitment, oversight and development strategy for teams of volunteers.
  • Create, develop, and lead creative teams for special events at Sandals Church.
  • Guide and give vision to the creative aspects of weekend gatherings and special events.
  • Provide senior oversight for all production teams for weekend services ensuring all technical components of weekend services are well planned and executed. Consistent collaboration with the Worship Arts department is vital.
  • Provide senior leadership to stage design, décor and atmosphere for all of Sandals' worship environments and common areas.
  • Bring senior oversight to the voice and vision for Sandals' branding and creative “imprint."
  • Champion the creative vision for Sandals Church across all departments.
  • Participate and give thought leadership to creative services in support of the Sandals Executive team.
  • Serve the mission and vision of Sandals under the leadership of the Executive Director of Network services.

  • Core Competencies

    Creativity: A demonstrated ability to invent inspiring ideas for branding, campaigns and messages that drive high levels of engagement.

    Decision-Making Skills: A reliable and consistent pattern of right choices made over time that delivers results.

    Analytical Skills: A mind hard-wired to analyze trends, stay current, and mine the data to determine fresh and effective approaches to ministry in the digital space.

    Interpersonal Skills: A humble confidence that inspires trust across the organization while providing clarity and direction for their teams.

    Management Skills: An understanding of how to manage multiple teams who will fuel the creative engine of Sandals Church.


  • 5+ years of relevant experience in a similar leadership role
  • Proven success in managing teams
  • Portfolio of previous work that displays an ability to turn an idea into a visual piece individually or through a team
  • Strong communication and technical skills
  • Experience with Adobe Creative Suite, project management tools, and church management software a plus
  • Comprehensive knowledge of the marketing design process
  • Staff Ethos

    The ideal candidate will embody the following characteristics and "fit" factors:

  • Motor and Capacity: You enjoy working hard, can maintain a heavy workload and can change gears comfortably when necessary. You can manage multiple priorities and initiatives without being overwhelmed and remain self-motivated and driven to produce the results that matter regardless of the busyness of the season.
  • Agility: You want to see continuous improvement and are ready and willing to adjust in whatever way is necessary to make that happen. You pursue innovation, think quickly on your feet and respond well to a dynamic, challenging environment.
  • Scale: You view growth as a beautiful thing because it means more lives are being changed for Jesus. You are familiar and comfortable with the difficulties and changes that come with being part of an organization that's moving to the next level.
  • Handcrafted: You have a unique perspective and desire to produce the best you have to offer. Your work is clearly your own and you have no interest in simply remaking what already exists.
  • Character: You have a strong reputation of personal and professional integrity because who you are is more important than what you do. You approach every situation with a desire to honor God and others and are authentic, loving and humble as a result.
  • Leadership: Your track record of results is evidence that you make things happen and are known for having vision and the ability to follow-through and pull the organization forward. Others respond well to you and trust you to make the right decisions.
  • Coach: People want to be a part of what you're doing. You can rally others to your cause and give clear input and direction when they join your team.
  • Calling: You are faithful to the task that has been set before you. While you know you are not defined by your job, you also know you were made to do this. You have chosen to step out in faith to both follow where God leads you and stay where he keeps you.
  • Staff Values

  • God: We connect ourselves and others to God.
  • Authenticity: We do things that are and appear genuine.
  • Honor: We promote unity by honoring God and others through service and humility.
  • Relationships: We bring people together in intentional relationships.
  • Excellence: We do our best with the resources we have.
  • Simplicity: We make things simple for others.
  • Diversity: We strive to reflect the kingdom of God and unify a broad range of voices, personalities, and cultures.
  • Reports To

    Executive Director, Network Services

    Next Steps

    *To find out more about Sandals Church, please peruse their website at If, after a thorough look at this profile, you sense that this would be a good fit for you, please contact us at any of the options below.


    Ready to take the next step? Please contact Keith Robinson via any of the options below.

    Keith Robinson // 812.781.0187 //