Thriving Leadership Formation

Practice, Learning, Friendship


Cohorts come together with the intent of creating nurturing and empowering times, spaces, and relationships. They are intended to foster spiritual and contemplative practices in order to enrich life and ministry, and help the church and its leaders thrive.

Cohorts meet virtually for 12 sessions using a curriculum of spiritual practices. 

Membership is open to rostered and non-rostered leaders in ELCA Regions 1 and 2.

Now is the time to join a cohort! We encourage you to explore the Synod and At Large cohorts that are being offered this fall, and email the Cohort Leader(s) to express interest and sign up!  

Synod Cohorts

Organized around ELCA Synods in Regions 1 and 2

Grand Canyon Synod Cohort

Communicate Jesus, Connect People, & Create Possibilities. Open to Lay and Rostered leaders.

Thursdays at 2pm.

For more information, contact Pastor Lou:


Montana Synod Cohort


Northwest Intermountain Synod Cohort

For more information on this cohort, please contact Wayne Shipman.


At Large Cohorts

Organized around a particular group or theme

Alaska Synod/Single Women in Ministry

Single women in ministry throughout the Alaska Synod.

Interested? Contact Meredith Harber (


Black, Indigenous, People of Color

Interested? Contact Antoine at:



Church Leaders in Nigeria

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

Please contact Sabi Elizabeth ( if you’re interested in learning more.


Disability Cohort

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

Disabilities, Chronic Illness, Mental Health, Neurodiversity. For clergy and lay leaders. Yes, you.

Email Mollie to learn more:



Experimental Ministries

Gathering beginning mid-October.

*This Cohort is currently at capacity.*


First Call / Early Career Cohort

A Cohort for those in their first call or early in their career.

Interested in learning more? Contact Chad Kohlmeyer (


Lay Administrators & Ministry Leaders

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

Laypersons who serve in administrative or ministry leadership roles in congregations and synod offices are invited to join a cohort facilitated by Terri Robertson.

This cohort will meet by Zoom on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month (except for December and March) from 6:30-8:00 PM Pacific Time beginning October 12th through April 25th.

Please contact Terri at  for more information.


Lay and Rostered Leaders

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

A cohort for lay and rostered leaders curious and desiring to grow through listening for God.

Sessions starting October 2023 — Monday evenings 6:30-8:00pm PST.

Interested? Email Pastor Eric:


Lay Leaders Cohort

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

A Lay Leaders Cohort for the leaders who don’t know they’re leaders.

Cohort now forming.

Contact Jeff Hora ( if interested.


Lay Professional Ministry Leaders

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

Diana Linden-Johnson is creating a cohort for lay professional ministry leaders. This cohort will meet by Zoom on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of the month from 10:30-noon Mountain Time beginning October 23rd.

Please contact Diana at or 720-280-0998 for more information.



Interested? Contact Darryl at:

Meetings will be Wednesdays 10:30am-12pm Pacific time.


Outdoor Ministry

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

A Cohort for Outdoor Ministry.



Parents of Kids & Teens Cohort

Open to Rostered and Lay Leaders in both Regions 1 and 2. Led by Pastor Judy Brennan.

Register at:



Partners of Rostered Ministers

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

Spouses & partners of ELCA Pastors & Deacons are invited to join this online sacred place to take a deep breath, slow down, and create space to notice God’s presence among us.

We will foster community and be refreshed by God and one another through a curriculum of spiritual practices.

2nd and 4th Mondays of the month from 7pm-8:30pm PT, beginning November 13.

We will skip over a few of the busy weeks – Easter and Christmas for example – and conclude in June.

Email to sign up – or ask questions!


Recently Retired Leaders

When rostered leaders retire, our relationships in and with church organizations change. This cohort invites rostered folks in the early stage of retirement to center in Spirit and community as we re-orient to what God is calling us to be, do, or change in our spirituality and relationships. Sessions will be scheduled in consultation with participants.
Interested? Contact Donna at


Rostered Leaders in Part-Time Ministry

An opportunity for rostered leaders (deacons and pastors) in Regions 1 and 2, in part-time ministry calls to gather at the wellspring of contemplative spiritual practice for nourishment and support.

Contact Pastor Julie for more information:


Rural Church Cohort

Rural Church Cohort for lay or rostered leaders.

Thursdays 11:30-12:30 (PT) via zoom beginning January 2024.

Interested? Learn more and/or register here.


Spiritual Grounding for Leadership in a Volatile Time

You are invited to a Thriving Leadership Formation (TLF) small group.
Your spiritual practice should be authentic to you, giving an opportunity for refreshment, fun, support, creativity, and a sense of peace.
In the TLF group you can expect to try different spiritual practices in a small group that builds trust and relationship over 12 Zoom sessions.  The group is facilitated by trained leader, the Rev. Laurie Lynn Newman, Interim Pastor at St. Andrew Lutheran, in Beaverton, Oregon.  There is no cost to attend the sessions, but you are asked to commit to attending all the sessions, to the best of your ability.
The groups will meet by Zoom on Wednesday mornings, 10-11:30am, with a four weeks pattern on, two weeks off, for twelve sessions.
Please contact Laurie if you are interested  at


Women-Identified Leaders Under 40

*This cohort has started meeting and is no longer open to participants.*

Women-Identified Leaders Under 40, open to lay and rostered leaders.



Youth Ministry Leaders (Lay or Rostered)

Interested? Joe Zimmerly at

This is the place to be for those who seek community, rest, and renewal to those who serve and/or are involved in Children, Youth, Young Adult, and Family Ministries to laugh, pray, and vent about this work.

Meetings to be scheduled once the group is formed. 


Cohort Leaders

Each summer, we seek people to serve as cohort leaders for both synod and at large groups (open to people throughout Regions 1 and 2). Each leader will go through training, receive support and compensation, convene and lead a group of church leaders through a shared curriculum. The groups are meant to be brave spaces that provide opportunity and encouragement for risk taking, learning of leadership skills, and developing new approaches to ministry that contribute to the larger community.

Leaders have been hired for Fall 2023. If you are interested in serving in the future, please complete the interest form below.

Current & Previous Leaders

Aaron Tidwell (he/him)

Certified Youth Minister (ELCA)

20 plus years in Youth and Family Ministry and Camping Ministry

Currently serving as Congregational Leader/Supply Preacher at Resurrection Lutheran Church in Long Beach, CA

I have an enthusiastic and engaging approach toward youth ministry. As someone who is passionate about youth and service. I have worked with thousands of youth and adults to lead a wide variety of creative, fun, and faith-filled projects. I believe it is very important for us to step up, use our voices, and make a positive difference in this world. I believe that Everybody Matters!

Amy Cavalleri (she/her)

As an ELCA pastor’s kid, Amy (she/her) was born into the Lutheran life. Her personal faith began to come alive as a kid attending Lutheran summer camp, and was forged as an adult in those same sacred, outdoor spaces in the midst of hikes, craft projects, quiet campfire songs and deep, authentic friendships.  

Currently, her most demanding (and rewarding) gig is mom of two kids. That one doesn’t pay the bills, so she also works as a nonprofit consultant in rural, Northern California. In this role, she has supported a wide variety of good work around the world, including women’s empowerment organizations in Nepal, wilderness adventure programming in the Trinity Alps, cradle-to-career collaboration, community trauma healing and rural health system improvements in Shasta County. She is a Master Trainer for suicide intervention with LivingWorks, and a Certified Group Facilitator with the Center for Mind Body Medicine

Amy joined the Episcopal Church as an adult and finds connection to God through music, volunteer work, and quiet, starry nights. She is “Type A” organized, but has learned to embrace the importance of emotions and authentic human connection in personal and professional settings. As a small group facilitator, her greatest joy is watching participants develop a deeper appreciation for their own unique brand of humanity, and a greater understanding of how authenticity (warts and all!) can catalyze deeper connections and greater joy.  


Antoine Cummins

Born on the Island of Barbados, raised in Brooklyn, NY, Antoine has spent time in Higher Education, working in the office of Student life and as an Adjunct Math Professor, Licensed tax professional, High School Math teacher and football coach. Curious about faith, young adults and leading service learning trips, he has also spent 12 years serving the ELCA in various capacities, including Director of Campus Ministry, Engagement Coordinator, Worship Leader and Community Organizer. Most recently, his passion for organizational change and leadership has led him into consulting for organizations serious about anti-racism, innovation, young adult engagement and discipleship. Although his journey has been uncharted and filled with many life-giving opportunities, the one thing that keeps him inspired is how much healing can be found in community; when we approach each other with a posture of humility and walk away from our interactions with a sense of awe and wonder! Within the ELCA, Antoine currently serves on the Commission for the Renewed Lutheran Church and Pacifica Synod as the Assistant to the Bishop for Anti-Racism Coordination.

Chad Kohlmeyer (he/him)

Pastor Chad Kohlmeyer grew up in northwest Wisconsin, and has served at Atonement Lutheran Church, Boulder, CO, since 2008, first as the Associate Pastor and currently as Lead Pastor. Prior to Boulder, he served a two point parish in Bay City and Ellsworth, WI. He holds Chemistry and Biology degrees from the University of Wisconsin, LaCrosse and a Masters of Divinity from Luther Seminary. Chad’s discipleship and relationship with Jesus was also formed by his home congregation in Rice Lake, WI, and time at Mt. Carmel Ministries in Alexandria, MN. 

Chad’s ministry is relational in nature, mirroring Genesis 1 which provides the image of humans being created to be in relationship with God…who are then invited to mirror that relationship with others. His call work to date has led him to focus on building relationships that are safe and which offer sacred space to grow in spirituality, to create space for the Holy Spirit to work, and to offer stability, patience, and gentleness in the midst of change, stress, and anxiety.

Chad is very grateful to be married to Aly (also ELCA clergy), and to raise three boys together (3rd, 8th, and 11th grades) in Broomfield, CO. He enjoys curling, all the outdoor opportunities Colorado offers, but especially downhill skiing which he attends to every chance he gets. He also enjoys co-leading Recreation and Revelation, a continuing education event each February in Winter Park, CO that involves a lot of outdoor re-creating.


Chavaleh Forgey (she/her)

Chavaleh Forgey (she/her) lives an eclectic life as a bi-vocational pastor, opera conductor, writer, and private voice teacher.  She is currently serving at Christ Lutheran Church in Federal Way, Washington, and has a specialty in experimental ministries that create community and multi-church partnerships to serve marginalized people in restorative ways.  She is committed to the priesthood of all believers and helping non-ordained people find and develop their gifts in worship, preaching, pastoral care, and experimental ministries, and is particularly concerned with creating vital worship environments which foster hope, joy, and community.  She lives on a backyard farm in Gig Harbor, Washington, with her husband, Lim, and oldest kid, Raven (her other two adult children reside in California).  She is usually involved in one big project or another, but in between she is happiest at home with family, snuggled up with a cat or a goat with a good book!

Darryl Kozak (he/him)

Darryl W. Kozak is a Rostered Minister of Word and Sacrament serving Peace Lutheran Church in Corona, CA, and Bethany Lutheran Church in Norco, CA. He is also a Level 2 Coach and LabCoach/trainer with the ELCA. He is certified as a Care for Creation Coach, an End of Life and Grief Coach, and an Associate Certified Coach with the International Coaching Federation. As an Associate (Oblate) of the Order of the Holy Cross, an Episcopal Benedictine community, Darryl has a deep passion for spiritual practices, and has practiced and taught centering prayer for over 25 years. He has also led retreats and workshops on prayer, walking the labyrinth, praying the daily office (the liturgy of the hours), and other spiritual disciplines. He enjoys a contemplative life grounded in Scripture and the writings of Christian mystics, especially the Desert Mothers and Fathers. He’s often said that two things get him up every day: God and music. Darryl is also a vocalist who has toured the USA and Europe as a featured soloist with various groups; he currently performs with a group in Palm Springs. He enjoys the outdoors and hiking, especially the desert. Darryl and his husband, Johnny, live in Corona, CA, with their family of many pets: a dog, three cats, a desert tortoise, and too many fish to count in multiple aquariums at home and at his church office.

Diana Linden-Johnson (she/her)

Pastor Diana Linden- Johnson’s passion in ministry is creating and fostering networks of connection and support between leaders in the church. Pr. Diana currently serves as the Assistant to the Bishop for Rostered Ministry in the Rocky Mountain Synod. This role includes working with candidacy, first call, global church networks, campus ministry, and rostered leader support. In addition to her role with the Office of the Bishop, Pr. Diana is also a trainer for Excellence in Leadership, a ministry of the Rocky Mountain Synod that seeks to grow authentic and effective leaders in the church for the sake of the world. 


Diana and her wife, Michaele, live with their two children in Broomfield, Colorado. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, gardening, hiking, and spending time with friends and family.

Donna Herzfeldt-Kamprath (she/her)

I am a joyful retiree who loved serving as a parish pastor and now enjoys time to explore other aspects of my life. My husband (also retired clergy) and I travel to visit grandkids across the country. We like road trips, biking, sightseeing, and camping. At home I create photo books, sort through family history, and spend time with friends. I also am deepening my spirituality and self-understanding using a Soul Collage practice. As an extrovert I like doing spiritual growth work with others. I participated in a TLF cohort last winter/spring with other retired clergy and found the experience an excellent grounding as I explore spirituality beyond my career and parish relationships. I look forward to hosting a new cohort and sharing the practices with more people.


Eric Bostrom (he/him)

Eric Bostrom(he/him) has served as an ordained pastor since 2003. He attended Midland Lutheran College in Fremont, Nebraska where he met his wife Rhonda, who is also an ordained pastor. After getting married in 1997, Eric and Rhonda headed off to Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio. In 2004, they welcomed their daughter, Annika, and in 2006 they welcomed their son, Soren, into their family. Being a father is the hardest job and highest calling in his life. Eric has served in a variety of ministry contexts from small congregations, campus ministry, and on a staff team of a very large congregation. In 2010, Pastor Eric completed Seeking the Spirit Within, a two-year faith formation process to become a certified spiritual director.

Eric has discovered that running is the best way for him to care for his body, mind, heart, and soul. He’s kind of a Bible nerd and enjoys long theological/biblical conversations with anyone over coffee in the morning and over beer in the evening. He’s passionate about being a good steward of God’s creation and if you get him talking about electric vehicles, he won’t shut up. He loves the outdoors and exploring the outdoor wonderland of the Pacific Northwest.

Hallie Parkins (she/her)

Pr. Hallie is a recent transplant to Corvallis, Oregon. She likes to call Tacoma, WA home, though she has bounced between the Midwest (Iowa, Ohio, Nebraska) and West Coast (California, Washington, and Oregon) in many of life’s transitions. She studied cello and religion in undergrad, explored intentional faith communities at Ghost Ranch in New Mexico and Holden Village in the wilderness of the North Cascades, and landed at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary (MDiv 2019) for her seminary education. Her first call brought her home to Tacoma, WA, just a few months before the world would change with the pandemic. Sacramental life and gospel in the world took a different shape than she could have ever imagined. It was also in Tacoma that she began exploring a call to sacred organizing around climate justice in church and community life in Tacoma neighborhoods. In February of this year, Hallie was excited to risk big and take the call to young adult ministry with Luther House, the Lutheran Campus Ministry at Oregon State University. She was intrigued by the promise of “feral ministry,” the relationship building with young adults exploring spiritual life and vocation, and to help grow young adult ministry. 

She lives with her spouse, Nate and a busy puppy named Beans. With joyful expectation, Hallie and her family will be welcoming a new baby any day now! 

Jeff Hora (he/him)

I’m Jeff Hora (he/him). I started my journey in Central Iowa and have called the Puget Sound region of Washington home since the beginning of 1994. I am a retired U.S. Navy musician, and have worked at several IT companies (Microsoft, et al…) since. I started my own consultancy in 2014 and retired that particular hat five years later. Throughout this time, God has made it clear to me that the path I was and am on is the path I’m created for. I am a graduate of the TLF program, which I found very beneficial. I am a trained and certified spiritual director via Christian Formation and Direction Ministries ( and have benefited from much more training via the ELCA (faith practice coach training and the PSALM program []) all of which has enabled me to be of wider service to my community and blown out the sides (in a good way….) of my spiritual walk. I am a member of Poulsbo First Lutheran Church (ELCA), serving in a few different roles. I have been vice-president of the church council and am presently head of the witnessing ministry.

I am a spouse and a dad. I am a voracious reader and lifelong learner. I am a HUGE fan of Mystery Science Theater 3000, old classic movies (‘Casablanca’, ‘Vertigo’, et al…), and what my spouse has taken to calling “crash-boomer” movies (think ‘The Avengers’….). We are collectively owned by seven cats (yeah, I know……). I enjoy traveling to and spending as much time in Hawaii (especially the island of Kauai) as frequently as budget and health/limited mobility will allow. I am a lifelong fan of pepperoni pizza….

Joe Zimmerly (he/him)

My name is Joe Zimmerly and I serve as the Director of Children, Youth and Family Ministries at Mount Cross Lutheran Church in Camarillo, CA. Having participated in a TLF Cohort previously, I am looking forward to leading a group this year. 

John Schraan (he/him)

Pastor John Schraan (he, him, his)  enjoys smoking food, playing trumpet, fishing in the family boat, playing video games,  and spending time with his family.  He enjoys creating space for new learning and spiritual growth. He is excited to be in the Stillaguamish Cluster of the Northwest Washington Synod serving Arlington and the people who gather at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church. 


Judy Brennan (she/her)

Judy Brennan grew up in Minnesota as a pastor’s kid, the youngest of five, though her parents divorced when she was in junior high.  She’s always loved furry animals – dogs, cats, horses, goats, etc. and favorite memories from childhood include family camping trips to the Rocky Mountains of Colorado.  She continued her love of travel in college – heading on service trips to Jamaica, Appalachia, the South Bronx, and a semester in Tanzania.  After college she spent a year teaching English in Japan, a year serving in the Lutheran Volunteer Corps in MN, and another working in a health care accounting and consulting firm before heading to seminary in Berkeley, CA. 

For her first 9 years of ministry, she was called to serve three churches around Louisville, KY where she also met her husband Dan.  They had three kids – Navi (15), Heidi (13), and Ben (11) who, like their parents are each fun, weird, caring, and loved.  They all moved to Bellevue, WA in 2013 and Judy now serves as a pastor in the NW Washington Synod.  Judy likes playing board games, reading, drinking local PNW beer, walking/hiking, watching movies, and baking.  The Brennan household also includes two cats – Skip & Stella and a yellow Labrador – Luna.

Julie Webb (she/her)

Pr. Julie Webb is a Mercy Associate, ordained Lutheran pastor, intuitive interspecies communicator (animal communicator), and energy worker. She received her M.Div. from Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in 1999; since then, she has served in jail, hospital, and congregational settings. Her delight in contemplative spiritual practices spans decades and continents: it has been nurtured in places like Holden Village, the Community of Taizé, and Mercy Center (Burlingame). These days, in addition to serving Galilee Lutheran Church in Kelseyville, CA, part-time, she’s exploring a new aspect of her vocation: ministry that includes other-than-human animals and our relationship with them. Her recent studies include pet loss grief support, animal communication, Reiki (with humans and other animals), EFT/Tapping with other animals and their humans, and other approaches to healing.

Keith Weatherford (he/him)

Hi, my name is Keith Weatherford (he, him, his). My wife of thirty-three years and I have five children, four who are adulting in their own homes and the youngest who remains in our home in Helena Montana. We are blessed with two grandsons. As a family, we enjoy the many outdoor activities that Montana has to offer. 

After a thirty-year hiatus from academia, I attended Youth Certification School at Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg (now United Lutheran Seminary ULS) in 2014/2015. I then found myself following and discerning a deeper sense of call. In the Fall of 2017, I returned to ULS to begin the journey of pursuing a Master of Divinity degree. In May 2022, I completed all the requirements and graduated from the Master of Divinity (MDiv) program at United Lutheran Seminary.

As a lifelong Lutheran, I have served in many different capacities as a lay person within the church. In terms of doing things in an “official” capacity, I was called to and worked as the Director of Youth Ministry at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd in Billings from 2014 through 2020. I had the joy of serving a detached Internship at Emmanuel Lutheran, “the little white church,” in Shepherd, Montana from August of 2021 through July of 2022. I began First Call with Saint John’s Lutheran in Helena, Montana in January 2023.  

Kelly Preboski (she/her)

Kelly is currently the Executive Director of Luther Heights Bible Camp in Idaho. She has served at various outdoor ministry locations for over 20 years in different capacities and appreciates unique outdoor settings which invite the Holy Spirit to stir in different ways; inviting people to growth, community, creation and deeper connections. She lives with her husband, two sons and Golden Doodle Fozzy and enjoys walking with friends, time outdoors, reading and lingering at coffee shops.

Laurie Lynn Newman (she/her)

Laurie currently serves as Interim Pastor at St. Andrew Lutheran, in Beaverton , Oregon. She brings an ecumenical background, having served in the Presbyterian Church (USA) for over 20 years. Fellowship, Congregational Care, Stephen Ministry, Small Groups have been her areas of expertise. Interim ministry suits her now, as issues of transition, change and growth are ever present.


She is a mother to two young adult sons. She is passionate about social dancing, choral singing and music that makes community.

Lourdes “Lou” Olson (she/they)

Pastor Lourdes “Lou” Olson (she/they) was born and raised in the South Bronx, NYC, and has resided in Las Vegas for almost twenty years. They earned a BA in Ministry and Leadership from Life Pacific College in California, and a Master of Divinity from Luther Seminary in Minnesota. She completed her pastoral internship at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church in Las Vegas, and currently serves as Associate Pastor at New Song Lutheran Church in Henderson. With a background in vocal performance, Pastor Lou has led music in various ministry settings, and is also passionate about sharing the Word of God through worship, prayer, and preaching. Their ecumenical history brings a broad and unique perspective to their ministry. She is fluent in Spanish and English, with a little bit of French, and enjoys good books, dancing, and getting to know people from all walks of life. 

Meredith Harber (she/her)

Pastor Meredith Harber (she/her) serves as the solo pastor to Christ Lutheran Church in Soldotna, Alaska.  Meredith, though born and raised in Pennsylvania, has found her way to Alaska by way of adventure and pure insanity.  When she’s not digging herself out from epic amounts of snow in the winter, she likes to cross country ski, visit breweries, play board games with friends, and rewatch The Office for the 257th time.  In the summer, you can find her hiking, backpacking, bike riding, doing projects around her house, attempting to garden, playing rugby, and watching The Office for the 258th time.  Meredith has two rescue pups, Jimmy and Ruthie, who both drive her insane and give her more love than she could imagine.  She is childless herself, but loves her godson and his brothers, as well as her nephews, more than life itself.  She is passionate about multicultural and multi faith dialogue, as well as attempting to learn how to accompany people in journeys unlike her own.  She is straight and cisgender, with a heart for Indigenous approaches to group formation and dynamics.  She is very white–as in, listens to murder podcasts and makes her own candles–but has been fortunate to do life in Bethlehem, Palestine, the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, and the Cherokee Nation.  She is a trained coach and works through her practice Faith Like Fireweed (  She participated in a TLF a few years back and is excited to help create space for others during this season!

Michael TeKrony (he/him)

Hi, I’m Michael TeKrony, a blessed Child of God.  For 35 years, I have had the joy to journey with my wife and experience together, God’s abundant life.  I am called into the ministry of Word and Sacrament and have had the privilege to serve for 18 and a half years in my first call in Colorado and now for a year and a half as interim pastor in Wyoming.  One of the joys I’ve had over the years is hearing peoples sacred stories of how God has been revealed to them on their life journey.  And, I love how the Spirit is revealed through spiritual practices.  Photography is one of the practices that continues to invite me to be present and focus on what is right in front of me, right now.  Or, to put it Biblically, “Be still and know, God is God.” 

Mollie Winninger (she/they)

Mollie (she/they) is a San Diego native currently working on her PhD in femme chronic pain and hysteria in antiquity and the modern American healthcare system. Before becoming a pediatric hospice chaplain, she ran a tiny private practice where she specialized in trauma counseling for the LGBTQ community, disability community, as well as domestic violence and narcissistic abuse recovery. She’s passionate about bioethics, Carole King, pasta, pharmacology, iced tea, and her growing library. She recently started a theology podcast named En Gott with one of her PhD colleagues.ed

Monica Butler (she/her)

Pastor Monica Butler serves a joint call to Lutheran Episcopal Campus Ministry and Immanuel Lutheran Church in Greeley, CO. She is committed to cultivating communities of faith and belonging that embody God’s transforming love in the world. Pastor Monica is a graduate of Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary and holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in Art History. Before coming to Greeley, she served as The Rev. Dr. John S. Damm Pastoral Intern at Saint Peter’s Church, New York City and worked in education at art museums in Santa Fe, NM and San Francisco, CA. She loves hiking, road cycling, knitting, and a good novel.

Ron Cox (he/him)

“Pastor Ron is a 2nd career pastor. After 30 years in research and corporate management, he finally gave in to God’s call and took early retirement. He studied at Fuller Seminary in Pasadena and graduated from Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary (now part of California Lutheran University) in Berkeley. He has served as a Chaplain for Providence and St. John’s hospitals; as the pastor at Christ Lutheran Goleta. While in Goleta, he was also the Lutheran campus ministry chaplain, worked with the interfaith homeless ministry and started a shower trailer ministry for the homeless. He now serves as pulpit supply for Ventura and western Los Angeles county. Pastor Ron coordinates the Eucharistic ministry for his home congregation, is a synod TEEM mentor, is on the synod Consultation committee and chair of the synod Reference and Counsel committee. 

He and his wife, Helen, have been married for 56 years and live in Thousand Oaks. They have 3 children and 6 grandchildren. When he and Helen are not traveling or spoiling the grandkids, he explores the far fringes of golf courses looking for lost balls – his!”

Sabi Elizabeth Aitiya (she/her)

I am Sabi Elizabeth Aitiya and a member of Lutheran Church of Christ in Nigeria. I grew up in the Lutheran church, I am a sustainability and global citizenship educator with about seven years’ experience in the field of sustainability education that spans across environmental education, sustainability and climate change education.

I have served for over 8 years in Lutheran ministry, congregational youth and women ministry and served on the staff of the state education management board. I am married to a LUTHERAN Pastor and we have 2 children. I care deeply about the church and its leadership and was part of the first cohort climate justice and faith by PLTS and has also been involved in faith-rooted community organizing in various contexts and that of GreenFaith international. Professionally, I hold an in ERM from the Moddibo Adama University Yola.

I am deeply committed to forming faithful leaders equipped to mobilize individuals and communities of faith to make a difference in the world by taking risks, collaborating with others, and acting on our faith to make a difference in our communities. 

Susan Berg (she/her)

Susan Berg (she, her) is a native Pacific Northwesterner and lifelong Lutheran. She earned degrees from both Pacific Lutheran University and Seattle University. Susan loves photography, reading, Netflix-ing, (card & board) gaming, walking by salt water or in the woods, camping, kayaking, and traveling with her husband. She has two amazing young adult children – whom she will brag about if you ask (and sometimes even when you don’t.)

From early days as a camp counselor to her present role as Director of Communications & Events on the Northwest Washington Synod staff, Susan’s work experiences have been both inside and outside of the church, including 12 years working alongside her ordained spouse. Through it all, she has tried to listen to where the Holy Spirit has nudged her to use her gifts. 

Over the last few years, the Spirit has led Susan into some tough and joy-filled conversations with other partners of clergy. Inspired by these connections, you are invited to join this cohort journey and discover fellow friends in this unique role in the church.

Susan Dollinger (she/her)

Pastor Susan Dollinger (she/her) serves at Bethany Lutheran Church in Longview, WA. She grew up in the Seattle area, and her family now lives in Vancouver, WA, however, Susan has lived in many areas in the United States. Her husband is a music professor, and they have three children. She has been trained in Godly Play and loves sharing the Word in creative ways. She is a second career pastor with college administration, and stay-at-home mom as her first careers. Susan enjoys art, Bible art-journaling, public speaking, learning, writing, and has a deep love for the Northwest. She has been active in centering prayer, spiritual direction, Soul Collage, and loves to walk labyrinths.


Terri Robertson (she/her)

Terri Robertson (she/her) is a life-long Southern California resident who has lived in Anaheim, CA for the past 10 years. She has served on staff in the Office of the Bishop in the Pacifica Synod of the ELCA since 1999 and her current role is Executive Assistant for Finance & Accounting. In addition to maintaining the finances of the synod, she works with congregations in financial training and consultations, as well as synod event planning and the registrar for annual events such as Synod Assembly and Theoasis. Over the years, she’s been responsible for synod and church communications and one of her favorite roles has been to serve as a congregational parish administrator. She has enjoyed walking alongside young people in the faith journey for over 30 years. In her free time, she enjoys spending time at the beach, reading, cooking, and playing board games with family and friends.

Wayne R Shipman (he/him)

Rev. Wayne R Shipman (He/Him) pastors two ELCA congregations in southeast Idaho. Wayne is a second-career pastor and MDiv graduate of United Lutheran Seminary in Pennsylvania. He serves as president of the Portneuf Valley Interfaith Fellowship in Pocatello, ID and as Dean of the Upper Snake River Cluster of NWIM Synod. Wayne still enjoys learning together with others in a relaxed teaching environment.

Originally an East Coast kid from New Jersey, he and his spouse Janet are enjoying their explorations of the Pacific Northwest. Wayne gets a lot of satisfaction from fusing glass as an art form and faith expression, often making crosses of many colors and designs.