August 2, 2016
Conference Staff member under investigation
Rev. James Parkhurst, Executive Director of Camp and Retreat Ministry program, was placed on immediate administrative leave today by the Executive Committee of the Board of Camp and Retreat Ministry. Parkhurst was hired in April of 2015 after a nationwide search. Previously he was the Director of Outdoor and Retreat Ministries in the Detroit Conference for five years. At his hiring the conference did a background check, including criminal background. He came to Oregon-Idaho with positive recommendations.
The administrative leave is a result of his arrest by federal officials for alleged criminal conduct. The charges are not related to his duties in the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference or the Camp and Retreat Ministries program. The charges stem from alleged conduct in another state.
Information received to date from federal officials does not suggest that any illegal activity occurred involving Oregon-Idaho Camp and Retreat facilities, programs or campers. As Executive Director Parkhurst oversees the staff and operation of the conferences six campsites; in that role he does not interface with campers on a regular basis. Each camp facility is supervised by an onsite director who leads staff and oversees onsite program and usage.
Safety of campers is the highest priority of the Camp and Retreat Ministry program. Polices and guidelines are in place to assure that camp experiences are places of physical and emotional safety for all involved. All Camp Directors, Staff and volunteers routinely undergo background checks.
For questions, contact Greg Nelson, Director of Communications at email@example.com or 503-802-9205.