Skip to main content

Meet Affiliate Chaplains

A number of faith communities provide support to their members in the Vanderbilt community through affiliate chaplains.  These affiliate chaplains provide regular opportunities for worship and study; social activities and fellowship; and counseling and care to members of their particular faith communities on campus.  Affiliate chaplains also cooperate with the Center for Spiritual and Religious Life to offer relevant ecumenical and interfaith programs to the Vanderbilt community.

Imam Ossama Bahloul, PhD

Affiliate Muslim Chaplain

Muslim Student Association

Dr. Ossama Bahloul is the Resident Scholar at the Islamic Center of Nashville, as well as a member if the Fiqh Council of North America and the Affiliate Muslim Chaplain at Vanderbilt University.  He is a graduate of Al-Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt, where he earned a BA in Islamic Studies and a PhD in Comparative Religions.  Dr. Bahloul’s interest in comparative religions has led to nearly 20 years of experience in interfaith dialogue and collaborations between Muslim organizations and leaders from other faiths.  Previously, Dr. Bahloul was imam at the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro, where he supported the community through severe Islamophobic attacks while building the only mosque in Murfreesboro.  Above all, Dr. Bahloul is a devoted husband to his wife Ivey Bahloul, and a caring father to his three children.

The Rev. Claire Berry

Affiliate Presbyterian (PCUSA) Chaplain

UKirk Nashville

Since 2021, Claire Berry has been the Executive Director of UKirk Nashville and Affiliate Presbyterian (PCUSA) Chaplain at Vanderbilt University. Born and raised in Nashville, Claire attended Yale University for her undergraduate degree. She then worked as a special education teacher and in the non-profit sector before attending Princeton Theological Seminary for her MDiv. Prior to joining our campus community, Claire served churches in Philadelphia, PA and Austin, TX. Ordained in the Presbyterian tradition, Clair is also a certified spiritual director, offering spiritual accompaniment to people of all faiths.

Ari Dubin

Executive Director

Vanderbilt Hillel

Ari Dubin began working as Executive Director of Vanderbilt Hillel in July 2005.  Originally from Houston, TX, Ari received his BA in Psychology from American Jewish University and MEd in Educational Psychology from the University of Texas.  Before coming to Vanderbilt Hillel, Ari was Assistant Director of Duke Hillel; the Youth and Camping Director at the JCC in San Antonio; and Director of Teen Services at MetroWest JCC in New Jersey


Tiffany Hudson

Affiliate Baptist Chaplain

Baptist Campus Ministry

Tiffany Hudson began her role as Director of Baptist Campus Ministry and Affiliate Baptist Chaplain at Vanderbilt University in summer 2019.  She has a BA in Religion from Averett University and a MDiv from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.  Before coming to Vanderbilt, Tiffany served in various collegiate ministry roles at Tulane University, Loyola University, and Belmont University.  Tiffany and her husband live in Nashville with their four daughters.

Fr. Gervan Menezes

Affiliate Catholic Chaplain

University Catholic

Fr. Gervan Menezes (best know to students as Fr. G) was appointed as Chaplain for University Catholic in summer 2019, as well as parochial vicar for the Cathedral of the Incarnation and Master of Ceremonies for Bishop J. Mark Spalding.  Fr. G completed his studies for the priesthood at Assumption Seminary in San Antonio, TX, receiving an MDiv and MA in Theology from the Oblate School of Theology.  He also has a Sacrae Theologiae Baccalaureus (STB) from Saint Paul University in Ontario, Canada.  Before he was a priest, Fr. G pursued his love of cooking and worked as an event planner and manager for three sushi bars in Brazil.  Fr. G served in several roles with youth and young adults prior to coming to Vanderbilt, most recently as Chaplain at Father Ryan High School in Nashville.

The Rev. Nancy Hawthorne Parker

Affiliate United Methodist Chaplain

Vanderbilt Wesley Fellowship

Nancy Hawthorne Parker is a creative and energetic pastor in The United Methodist Church, who began working with Vandy Wesley in 2016.  She also spends her time as the young adult pastor at West End UMC, across the street from Alumni Lawn.  Nancy has a BA in Music from Florida State University and a MDiv from the Divinity School at Vanderbilt University.  Nancy frequently breaks into song and laughter.  When she’s not pastorin’ you can find her taking voice classes at the Nashville Jazz Workship, interviewing people for her podcast, or kayaking down the Harpeth.  Nancy is married to Geoff, who works to created young adult ministry resources at The Upper Room.

Rabbi Shlomo Rothstein

Affiliate Jewish (Chabad) Chaplain

Rohr Chabad House at Vanderbilt

Rabbi Sholmo Rothstein was raised in Baltimore, MD, the oldest of eight children.  He traveled the world for school, living in Chicago, Montreal, Melbourne, and New York before landing in Tennessee.  Shlomo is known for always having a smile on his face, and is guaranteed to make your day better when you are around him.  Shlomo lives in Nashville with his wife Nechama and their six children.

The Rev. Richie Sessions

Affiliate Presbyterian (PCA) Chaplain

Reformed University Fellowship at Vanderbilt

Richie Sessions was called to serve RUF at Vanderbilt in 2015.  Originally from Little Rock, AK, Richie attended Belmont University and earned a MDiv from Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, MS.  Before coming to Vanderbilt, Richie served as Senior Pastor at Independent Presbyterian Church in Memphis, and as Associate Pastor at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Cleveland, MS.  Richie met his wife Laura in college and they were married in 2000; they have three children.

The Rev. Becca Stevens

Affiliate Episcopal Chaplain

Nashville Canterbury

Becca Stevens has served as the Chaplain at St. Augustine’s Episcopal Chapel for more than 20 years.  Becca attended the University of the South and the Divinity School at Vanderbilt; she has been conferred two honorary doctorates because of her work healing communities.  Becca is an author, speaker, priest, social entrepreneur, founder and president of Thistle Farms.  Her latest book, Love Heals, was released in fall 2017.  Becca lives in Nashville with her husband, Marcus Hummon, and their three sons.