Sean Gajda • Lead Pastor
Sean's primary role at Trailside Church is to bring vision, build teams and community, and serve the city he's been called to love and loved to call home for most of his life. Although he's lived in South Carolina since he was 5, Sean will be the first one to tell you he's originally from Cleveland Ohio and loves everything sports-related from the area- yes, even the Browns.
Trailside was founded out of a pull on Sean's heart for people who have been burned by traditional church ministry, who have taken some 'time off' from God, or feel far from God because of a multitude of reasons. His specific call to be a Lead Pastor at Trailside is born out of a love for people, a desire to walk with people through every stage of life, and a passion for preaching and teaching scripture so that people meet Jesus and have their eternities changed.
Sean is married to his beautiful wife of 10+ years, Lane, and they have 2 children: Collin, 6 and Emma, 3. They enjoy riding around in his dream Jeep Wrangler with the top off and exploring the surrounding area while eating boiled peanuts.
Sean loves the book of Romans, pretty much anything written by C.S. Lewis, and unwinding with a good bourbon on his back porch while hanging out with his wife and two dogs, Moose and Stella.
Tyler Schipper serves as the College and Career Pastor at Trailside Church. His primary role is to lead our thriving college ministry as well as assist Pastor Sean in staffing, teaching, and discipleship leadership. Tyler is from Atlanta GA and is passionate about his wife Afton, their soon to be born daughter Clara, and people. He is currently working for Harper Construction as well as Trailside, and he is having a blast. He first felt the call to ministry when he was a college student at North Greenville, and in his spare time you may find him spending time with his family, talking about the Enneagram, or working outside with his hands. Tyler believes in the mission of Trailside and says his love of TSC comes from being a part of a ministry with a church that truly loves the Gospel.
Dusty Kennon serves as the Creative Director at Trailside Church. His primary role is to collaborate with our Lead Pastor and Worship Leader to help tell the story of the Gospel and Trailside through video and other creative elements. Dusty is from Charleston, S.C and is passionate about media, traveling, and relationships. In addition to working at Trailside, he owns his own media company, Top Shelf, which is growing rapidly due to Dusty's incredible talent and gifting. In his spare time you may find him spending time on Youtube, taking photos, or finding beautiful places to travel. Dusty is a part of Trailside because he believes that the mission and heart of Trailside are for people and the Gospel. He believes it is a story that deserves to be told.
Riley Taylor serves as the Worship Director at Trailside Church. His primary role is to collaborate with our Lead Pastor and Production team while training and leading our band members. Riley is from Ware Shoals, SC and is passionate about music, lyricists, and relationship. He is currently a student at Furman University (Go Dins!) working on his psych and religion degree. He first felt the call to ministry when he was a teenager in Greenwood, and spent time leading worship ever since. In his spare time you may find him spending time with his family, on campus at Furman, or enjoying sushi all over Greenville County. Riley is a part of Trailside because he believes that the mission and vision of his church will be used to change thousands of lives in Greenville County.
Hanna Arata is the Community Engagement Director at Trailside, spending her time and effort on finding the heartbeat of the city and running all of TSC Outreach events, such as Parent's Night Out and Third Saturday. A recent graduate of Furman University (Go Dins!) and a past intern at TSC, Hanna is passionate about loving people and making sure everyone feels at home. Hanna is originally from Dallas, Texas and although she loves Texas, she will tell you she fell in love with Greenville the moment she stepped foot here. Hanna loves organizing, utilizing
multiple pen colors, and cheering on the sisters of Chi Omega. Hanna loves Jesus, music, and laughing out loud, and all three are evident immediately upon meeting her.