Steal her secrets series: West Michigan pastor answers 25 career questions

Credit: Doriane Parker-Sims

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOTV)- Her suit fits just right, she knows everyone in the room and you can just tell she’s got it going on!  You wish you could be her or simply wish you knew her secret to success.  WOTV 4 Women wants to give you a deeper look at the many power women who are helping make West Michigan a thriving place for women at work.  We’re having them dish the details on everything from work life to home life and what has led to their career success.

25 Questions with Doriane Parker-Sims

(L) The Deborah House, (M) Pastor Doriane Parker-Sims, (R) Kingdom Life Ministries Church
(L) The Deborah House, (M) Pastor Doriane Parker-Sims, (R) Kingdom Life Ministries Church

Meet Doriane Parker-Sims. She’s the co-founder and executive pastor of Kingdom Life Ministries and the executive director of The Deborah House. But there’s a lot more to know about this power woman and her career. Read our interview with the fabulous Pastor Doriane Parker-Sims.

“The woman I would love to nominate is Pastor Doriane Parker-Sims.  She is a wife, executive pastor, the Deborah House and Deborah Project founder, who believes in God first, family and giving back to her community and city!” -Nominator

Question 1: Describe your job and why you love it.

I currently serve as the co-founder and executive pastor of Kingdom Life Ministries and the executive director of The Deborah House/Project in Grand Rapids, MI. My responsibilities include preaching, teaching, and mentoring ministry leaders. I assist in the implementation of annual ministry plans, oversee training materials and coordinate pastoral care and our volunteers.

I also oversee the Deborah House which is a local housing program for homeless mothers and children that provides safe and healthy housing, resources and mentorship. I oversee our monthly support group for single moms as well that includes lunch, speakers, childcare, diapers, household items and personal care items all free of charge.

I love my job because I have the opportunity to see lives changed spiritually, socially, economically and physically. I enjoy helping others and want to see people healthy in body, soul and spirit. I get to walk with people through some of life’s most difficult moments and see them come out on the other side. I get to see single mothers educated, empowered and encouraged! As a follower of Christ, I want to live according to my biblical worldview which is to love my neighbor as myself!!

Question 2: Dig through your purse and tell us three must have items you found and 1 item you were surprised to find.

Thank God I had cleaned it out yesterday!  I found my wallet, some change and my checkbook! I was surprised to find an appt. slip for getting my reading glasses that I did not confirm. I don’t want to admit I need reading glasses….lol!

Question 3: When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be a child psychologist and solve the worlds problems.

Question 4: What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t sacrifice your family for your ministry career.

Question 5: What’s the job you’ve had (in your lifetime) that still gives you nightmares?

Working at McDonalds and Wendys at the same time as a teenager. Feeling like a tub of grease when I got home. lol

Question 6: What’s the best thing you’ve done to advance your career?

Attending Grand Rapids Theological Seminary was very impactful and strategic for my career in ministry.

Question 7: Flats or heels?

Heels in the pulpit, flats when I sit down.

Question 8: Crying at work? Okay or not okay?

Nope, have to be an encourager to others. I can cry at home but I don’t cry often.

Question 9: Work/life balance? How do you make it work? What time do you “clock out”?

I’m still working on this one. I have struggled with clocking out because there is always a homeless mom and child out there or a member of my church that needs help. I am learning to set boundaries for myself and make sure my family has my love and attention.

Question 10: Eating lunch at your desk? A do or a don’t?

I eat everything at my desk. lol

Question 11: What makes you grateful?

God’s love and his compassion. The fact that he loves us and is a God of a second chance.

Question 12: What was your biggest blunder in a job interview? What did it teach you?

I haven’t had too many interviews because my brother and I founded our church.

Question 13: Describe your morning routine.

My morning starts at 4 a.m. with prayer and then eventually study time. I handle some business for the church and the Deborah House usually and then off to the YMCA to sweat in one of the classes! I head to the office after that.

Question 14: Proudest career moment to date.

I think my proudest moment was the opening of the Deborah House. It had been a dream of mine to see homeless moms and children have a safe, beautiful environment to call home. When we opened the doors in 2015 and saw women living in cars and hotels move into a safe healthy environment it was one of the proudest moments of my life!

Question 15: What’s the most important thing in your life right now?

After my relationship with God, it’s definitely my family! My husband, kids and grand baby. Also my extended family also.

Question 16: What time did you wake up today?

4 a.m.

Question 17: What’s the first thing you notice when you meet someone?

The first thing I notice is if they are hurting or not. I seem to be very sensitive to that.

Question 18: What are you reading right now?

The Bible, studying to preach on Sunday.

Question 19: In a typical day how many emails do you answer?


Question 20: What’s your favorite TV show?

I like news shows like Dateline. I tend to be a studier of human nature and what makes people do what they do.

Question 21: What’s your favorite spot for a meeting in West Michigan?

I tend to like to meet at Starbucks. I’m a pumpkin spice latte with soy fan.

Question 22: What’s your favorite app?

Probably Fitbit right now. My husband gets amused by challenging me on a daily basis.

Question 23: What experience in life made you the most nervous?

I think facing large crowds. Whether it was preaching to 600-800 people in our church at times or going on the Word Network which is a international TV show and knowing that millions of people were watching. I could hardly breathe, but knew I had to minister. Needed God’s strength!

Question 24: What’s one question you always ask in an interview?

Why do you want this position?

Question 25: What’s the best part of your job?

Loving and helping people, that’s what motivates me to get up at early in the morning and to keep helping the homeless and my community.


Do you know a West Michigan Power woman who deserves to be featured in our series?  Email us her name/business and contact info!

Other women featured in this series!

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West Michigan radio host answer 25 career questions

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West Michigan coffee shop owner answers 25 career questions

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