Peace Staff

Rev. Karen Locken

Lead Pastor
klocken@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Rev. Karen Locken is the Lead Pastor of the pastoral team that serves together at Peace. Her role on the team includes the oversight of Worship, Stewardship, Staff and Administration. Her passion for integrating theology with the chaotic lives we live is part of what she loves about ministry. Her innovative leadership style, ability to think creatively, and compassion for humanity drives her work towards re-shaping the church as it seeks to be relevant and effective for the future. She loves to see how God is at work on the loose among us…everyday in the world around us.

A lover of stories, Karen likes photography, writing, and learning about people. She is interested in architecture and is humbled and intrigued by the people approaching the issues of housing with the innovation of the tiny house movement.

Karen is married to Doug and is mom to Abby, Kelsey and Sarah, nana to Jack & Max, and mom-in-law to John and Michael.

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Rev. Karen Locken

Rev. Karen Locken

Lead Pastor
klocken@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Rev. Doug Locken

Pastor
dlocken@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Rev. Doug Locken is part of the pastoral team that serves together at Peace. His role on the team includes the oversight of Congregational Care ministries. Most recently a chaplain at Oakwood Village East, one of Doug’s areas of expertise is serving the people who are challenged by the vulnerabilities of aging. Doug is the creator and energy behind the ministries of Coffee & Chocolate and Walking in Faith. He also loves worship leadership and working with people of all ages.</span>

A Vikings fan living in Packer country, Doug is a wise thinker, great listener, and a compassionate care giver. He is excited about the future of the church and the work we have to do in the world related to the Good News of God in Jesus Christ.</span>

Always advocating for caring for the environment, Doug loves spending time hiking, biking and paddling in the wilds of creation. He is married to Karen, and they have three grown daughters, two grandsons, and two sons-in-law.</span>

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Rev. Doug Locken

Rev. Doug Locken

Pastor
dlocken@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Rev. Erica Becker

Adjunct Pastor
peace@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Rev. Erica Becker is officially on leave from call. However, as time and energy allow, she serves as an adjunct member of the pastoral team at Peace. Her role on the team includes occasional preaching and digital media outreach.

Wise beyond her years, Erica is passionate about faith in the midst of our everyday world, and strives to integrate hands on faith practices in the midst of busy family life. Her preaching arises from her faith which is central to her life. She cares deeply about the planet, the people who live on it and the God who created it.

Erica takes her work seriously but she is also serious about her roles as a wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt and friend. That makes her human....and honest...and real. A die hard Bears fan, she is harmoniously married to Matt, a Green Bay Packers fan. They have two young sons, Marvin and Calvin.

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Rev. Erica Becker

Rev. Erica Becker

Adjunct Pastor
peace@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Tom Kreis

Pastoral Intern
tkreis@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Mid career, Tom has left a successful vocation in the insurance industry to pursue ordination as a pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). A student at Wartburg Seminary, Tom has opted into the newly designed Collaborative Education program where he works as an intern in pastoral ministry alongside the four years of seminary education. Tom has joined our staff for this purpose and brings many great gifts to Peace. He and his wife, Karen have a college aged daughter, Katie who is studying at Wartburg College.

Tom has a passion for working with people of all ages, learning about Jesus, and discovering how his gifts and abilities serve the vocation of public ministry. Eager to move forward, Tom is excited about his work at Peace which will include teaching, leading worship, working with leadership teams, working with youth, and seeking outreach ministry opportunities. Tom loves to hike around the area and enjoys discovering new places to visit in Wisconsin that he can explore on foot. In addition, he values time with his family.

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Tom Kreis

Tom Kreis

Pastoral Intern
tkreis@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Jan Rutkowski

Office Supervisor
Radical Ringers Director
peace@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

From her head to her shoes, Janet Rutkowski is a beloved staff member of Peace Lutheran Church. She is the welcoming voice for anyone who calls, and a welcoming presence for anyone who stops by. In addition to her daily ministry of hospitality, Jan is the one who makes the church work from creating bulletins, to newsletters, to anything that has to do with connecting people for fun and fellowship.

She is married to Alan, is the mother of three grown children, and the grandmother of three adorable little people.

Jan also directs a high school bells group, Radical Ringers and occasionally their alumni component Festival Ringers.

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Jan Rutkowski

Jan Rutkowski

Office Supervisor
Radical Ringers Director
peace@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Denise Blume

Assistant Treasurer
dblume@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Denise is the caretaker of all of our payables. She asks great questions and hunts people down for their receipts/explanations of expenses. A negotiator of reduced contract costs, a warm sense of humor and her sincere compassion for the least and the lost among us, makes her an essential part of our ministry team.

Denise lives with her wonderful family—her husband Mark, and children, Alex, Callie and Tyler.

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Denise Blume

Denise Blume

Assistant Treasurer
dblume@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Carrie Miller

Communications Coordinator / Finance
cmiller@nullplcemail.org

Carrie is a Jill of all trades who is a part time receptionist, office assistant, copy editor, organizer, communicator and financial secretary. Carrie can make a lot of things happen and is a great back up to our Office Manager. She is married to Corby and they are the parents of two boys, Mason and Max.

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Carrie Miller

Carrie Miller

Communications Coordinator / Finance
cmiller@nullplcemail.org

Sherry Johnson

Music Coordinator
Pianist
sjohnson@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

If you have met Sherry, you know that music is in her bones.  She is a master at recruiting people to use their musical gifts.  Mention that you once sang in a chorus or played an instrument and you will find yourself resurrecting your talents.  Sherry not only plays the piano, keyboards, organ and bells; she also sings, teaches piano and accompanies local talent in many music festivals.

Sherry is our Music Coordinator at Peace which means she schedules special music, organizes the choirs, chooses hymns, directs Chapel Chimes, Resurrection and JuBellation Ringers, accompanies worship, and is an amazing recruiter of volunteer musicians.

Sherry is married to Jerry, has two grown sons, and is the grandmother of five grandsons and one granddaughter.

 

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Sherry Johnson

Sherry Johnson

Music Coordinator
Pianist
sjohnson@nullpeaceinwaunakee.org

Jerry Johnson

Peace Choir Director

Jerry is one of those talented choir directors with a great sense of style and humor. He coaxes the best music from a volunteer group of adults who love to share beautiful music with our worshipping community.

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Jerry Johnson

Jerry Johnson

Peace Choir Director

Molly Petroff

Grace Notes Choir Director
mpetroff@nullplcemail.org

Molly directs the Grace Notes Choir, a children’s choir for students in grades 3-6. Molly who has a long history of working with children in musical productions in congregations is also the Choral Director at Waunakee High School.

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Molly Petroff

Molly Petroff

Grace Notes Choir Director
mpetroff@nullplcemail.org

Penny Jacobsen

Organist
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Penny Jacobsen

Penny Jacobsen

Organist

Laura Komar

Joyful Noise Choir Director

Laura Komar is our new Joyful Noise Director. A mother of three and wife to Jason, Laura delights in helping our little people grow with sounds of music and rhymic noises. Trained in early childhood and elementary education, Laura is skilled at helping our young ones enjoy learning and performing. We are delighted to have her on our team.

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Laura Komar

Laura Komar

Joyful Noise Choir Director

Shannon Conners

KiX Co-Director
peacelutheranss@nullgmail.com

Shannon and Keri make a great team leading our KiX program.  Both were instrumental in the creation of KiX and continue to improve and expand the program year after year.

Shannon and her husband Josh have two kids, Haleigh and Kaleb.

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Shannon Conners

Shannon Conners

KiX Co-Director
peacelutheranss@nullgmail.com

Keri Ceder

KiX Co-Director
peacelutheranss@nullgmail.com

Keri and Shannon make a great team leading our KiX program.  Both were instrumental in the creation of KiX and continue to improve and expand the program year after year.

Keri and her husband Jim, have two daughters, Madison and Emma.

 

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Keri Ceder

Keri Ceder

KiX Co-Director
peacelutheranss@nullgmail.com

Sandra Briesath

Preschool Director
sbriesath.peacepreschool@nullgmail.com

I have had the privilege of serving as director of Peace Lutheran Preschool since 2010, when the Preschool first opened its’ doors. In early September 2010, we welcomed twelve children to our brand new preschool program. By the end of that school year, we were serving twenty-one children and had added a lunch bunch option. Today, we serve 83 children, most on a part-time basis. We have two preschool classes, the Bumble Bee class serves children starting at 2 ½ years and the Dragonfly class serves children who are three to enroll. Through a collaboration with the Waunakee School District, we offer both a Morning and an Afternoon 4K class.

Peace Lutheran Preschool earned national accreditation in 2015, an achievement 8 percent of early childhood programs achieve. To attain that level of quality requires teachers who have education and experience in working with young children. The teachers working at Peace Preschool not only have the education and experience, but are dedicated to the profession and passionate in their work with young children. I am truly blessed to work with such an amazing team of teachers.

Being able to serve all children was core to the original vision when building Peace Preschool. In the 8 years of operation, more than $ 70,000 in scholarships have been awarded. Thanks to a partnership with the Waunakee Public School District that allows early childhood specialists and therapists to support children with special needs at Peace, we are able to welcome all children.

I received my BS in Rehabilitative Psychology and a BA in German Literature from UW Madison. In 2015 I earned my Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education.

My husband LJ and I have been married for 26 years. We have three wonderful sons. Luke, our oldest, is in his second of a three year program at UW Milwaukee to become a Physical Therapist. Ben, also attending UW Milwaukee will earn his bachelor’s degree in Psychology in May. Jackson, our youngest, just turned 18 and is enjoying his senior year at Waunakee High School.

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Sandra Briesath

Sandra Briesath

Preschool Director
sbriesath.peacepreschool@nullgmail.com

Suzanne Sackett

Assistant Director to Peace Preschool
ssackett.peacepreschool@nullgmail.com

Hi, I’m Suzanne Sackett and am thrilled to be joining Peace Preschool for my fourth year! My position here is a combination of administration as the Assistant Director, and teaching as the preschool Faith Instructor.
I graduated from UW-Madison with degrees in Art Education - emphasis in early childhood and Graphic Design. I have spent over 20 years working in education, primarily with children ages 2-5.
My personal philosophy as an early childhood educator and administrator is to enrich each young life I come into contact with through respectful nurturing, creativity and ongoing opportunities to encourage a love for life-long learning. In addition to work in administration and teaching faith here at Peace, you’ll probably find some colorful collaborative paintings created with our students on the walls throughout the school. I have a passion for art and creativity and believe each one of us has a need to find our unique way to express it.
I live in Middleton with my two daughters, Margot 14, Elise 12 and my finance Neil. With one girl in middle school, the other a freshman in high school and Neil being a “boisterous Brit” from the U.K, there is a never dull moment in our household!
I’m from the great neighboring state to the west and grew up in Minneapolis, MN. We stay connected to family that resides there and often head back for fun filled weekends. Don’t worry…we are die hard Badger fans. In spite of this fact, our MN kin still let us visit! We have an awesome ongoing family rivalry - Badgers vs. Gophers, taking every chance we can to rub in all the glorious WI wins!

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Suzanne Sackett

Suzanne Sackett

Assistant Director to Peace Preschool
ssackett.peacepreschool@nullgmail.com

Pattie Bowe

Bumblebee Teacher

My name is Patti Bowe (pronounced Bove), and I’m a co-teacher with Ms. Kellie in the Bumblebee Room. I have been a part of Peace Lutheran Preschool since the fall of 2013. I am looking forward to be getting to know each and every child and family!

I grew up in Waunakee, and it’s exciting to see all the changes that Waunakee has gone through over the years. My husband, Brent is a delivery driver for Vita Plus in Madison. He grew up in the Chippewa Falls area~Bloomer to be exact. My oldest daughter, Myranda is 21 yrs old, and she will be attending Madison College for accounting. She also works at Dogtopia in Middleton taking care of “furry preschoolers”. It’s fun to compare stories of preschool and doggy daycare, since they are very similar!! Her passion is riding and showing horses. My other daughter, Kailey is 15 yrs old and is a sophmore in high school. She enjoys playing basketball and volleyball, but she decided to try her hand at riding horses too like her big sister. Kailey is also football manager for the high school teams. Outside of the football season, she also enjoys babysitting, so let me know if you are ever looking! Our family also goes to a lot of horsepulls over the summer, and our favorite is going to the WI State Fair competition. Brent’s uncle has a pair of the big Belgian horses, so he helps him out. We have 1 dog (Lilly), and Myranda has a dog (Maya). We recently added a chocolate lab puppy (Mattie) to the family, that Myranda’s boyfriend, Matt owns. We get a LOT of puppy kisses, but be able to sleep at night!

I graduated from Edgewood College with a teaching degree in early childhood with exceptional needs (PK-3rd grade). I started teaching preschool when Myranda was a baby, so I could spend more time with her, but yet have a job. I found that I absolutely love the preschool years. I also teach Sunday School for preschoolers once a month at Northridge Church.

I enjoy teaching young children, because I love to inspire them to learn and discover the world around them. I get all excited when they have the ah-ha moment when they realize their own achievements.

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Pattie Bowe

Pattie Bowe

Bumblebee Teacher

Kellie Faulds

Bumblebee Teacher

My name is Miss Kellie and I teach in the Bumblebee Room with my dear friend Miss Patti. This is my seventh year teaching at Peace Lutheran Preschool and I feel very blessed to be a part of such a wonderful school, staff, and community. I have been teaching two and three year olds for almost 10 years and it’s an age group I ADORE!

I live in Sun Prairie with my husband and our two young pups. Luna our Corgi and Wendy Peffercorn our French bulldog/Pug mix. We bought a house two years ago and we love having a yard for our dogs to play in! My husband and I enjoy traveling and visiting different cities and breweries. I love spending time with family because I’m very close with my parents and siblings. I have three older brothers and an older sister, and we all share a fun sense of humor :) I also love being “Auntie Kellie” to my seven nieces and nephews! In my free time, I enjoy reading, writing, painting and other fun crafts. When I’m not too busy, I love to write short stories and children’s books with illustrations. In fact, I once had a story published in Pockets Magazine.

I’ve earned my Preschool Credentials at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. I also attended UW-Whitewater for two years and I am a graduate from The Institute of Children’s Literature.

I love teaching Preschoolers and my job means the world to me. I feel very blessed to be around such amazing families. Please stop by anytime to say Hello. (We LOVE visitors!)

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Kellie Faulds

Kellie Faulds

Bumblebee Teacher

Heidi Gaugert

Dragonfly Teacher

My name is Heidi Gaugert - I am one of the teachers in the Dragonfly Classroom at Peace. I have had the honor and privilege of being a part of this amazing team at Peace for 8 years! Over that time, I Miss Kim and I have had the opportunity to meet so many wonderful children and their families, and we are very excited to see what this new school year holds.
My husband Tom and I lived in Waunakee for almost 18 years and have been members of Peace since we joined this incredible community. As of last year, we officially became “empty nesters”, and moved to Lake Wisconsin where we enjoy paddleboarding, boating and a bit “quieter lifestyle”. (Which rejuvenates me for days filled with 16 active preschoolers!!)
Our youngest daughter, Olivia will be a sophomore at U.W. Madison, studying Retail and Consumer Behavior. We love having her close by.
Our middle child, Grace, will be starting her senior year at Drake University in Des Moines where she is pursuing her undergrad in Health Sciences, and plans to go on to earn her doctorate in Physical Therapy.
And our oldest child – our son Zach, is a professional golfer who currently resides in Arizona . (He earned a degree in Business from Marquette University in 2016, but is happily pursuing his career as a golfer and seeing where that takes him!)
My personal hobbies and interests include yoga, running and photography. The children I am blessed to spend my days with here at Peace bring me so much happiness and sense of purpose. Of course we fill our days with meeting new friends, learning new things and exploring the world around us…..but most importantly, I hope that each child that spends their days in the Dragonfly Room feels loved, respected and valued just for the person they are!! Together, if we can accomplish that – I would say we are truly successful!
We are very proud of our classroom and the community we have built within these walls – we would love to share it with you, so please feel free to stop in and visit us!

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Heidi Gaugert

Heidi Gaugert

Dragonfly Teacher

Kim Klug

Dragonfly Teacher

My name is Kimberly Klug. I am one of the preschool teachers at Peace Lutheran Preschool. Prior to me working at Peace, I ran my own daycare and worked for the Waunakee School District as a Para Educator. I am very excited to begin yet another fun and exciting year with our fantastic teaching staff.

I am originally from Racine and I am married and have two sons, Mitchell (21) and Collin (17). We also share our home with a really cute golden doodle dog named Maggie Mae. My favorite pastimes include spending time with my family, boating, fishing, hiking and attending outdoor events in Madison (music, food, farmers market, etc…).

I am very excited about the opportunity to support the growth and development of your children and sharing fun experiences with them. It is going to be a really fun year. I cannot wait to see all the kids from last year and welcome the new children to Peace. I know it will be a fun and comfortable place for your child to experience preschool through play. I am looking forward to interacting with you and your wonderful children.
Miss Kim

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Kim Klug

Kim Klug

Dragonfly Teacher

Dawn Wood

4K Classroom

Hello! My name is Dawn Wood. This is my sixth year teaching 4K at Peace Preschool. Before this, I was a substitute teacher here in all of the classrooms and my youngest son attended 4K at Peace!

I previously worked in the Waunakee Community School District as a Para-Educator. Prior to that, I attended MATC for my Family Childcare Certificate and was a State of WI certified childcare provider in my home. I absolutely love teaching and continue to take early childhood courses to enhance our classroom experiences together!

My family has lived in Waunakee for several years. My husband and I moved here mainly for the wonderful school district and we have not been disappointed! We have three awesome kiddos; our oldest son, Kyle, is in the U. S. Marine Corps Reserves and a recent graduate of Madison Media Institute for video/motion graphics and photography. He is now at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse furthering his education in communications/business. Our daughter, Lindsey, attends the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities majoring in biology and our youngest son, Brandon, is in sixth grade at the Intermediate School. We recently added the newest member of our family, an adorable puppy named Penny! I enjoy spending time with my family, traveling, boating, golfing, reading and photography. I also love to attend UW Badger football and hockey games…go Badgers!

I am really excited to get to know each of you and work with you in making your child’s 4K experience a great one. I love working with children and seeing the world through their eyes. Each and every day brings something new and fun. I am looking forward to a wonderful year with your child!

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Dawn Wood

Dawn Wood

4K Classroom

Julie Erickson

4K Classroom

Hello! My name is Julie Erickson and I am thrilled to welcome you to Peace Preschool as the teacher of the 4K program. I am looking forward to an fabulous school year that is filled with meaningful play and activities that will help our students gain confidence as they prepare for Kindergarten.

I grew up in Iowa and I moved to Madison after graduating from Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa. I have a degree in Elementary Education and Early Childhood. I also have a minor in Music. I played the tenor saxophone in the marching band during my college years!

I have had many years of teaching experience. I taught First Grade for seven years in the Verona School District and for two years at Saint Edward’s School in Vero Beach, Florida. I have also taught Kindergarten and Camp Kindergarten in Waunakee and I used to be the 4K teacher at Peace! I taught here for three years and I am so lucky that my two youngest children were able to grow up at Peace and share the 4K experience with me.

Speaking of children, my husband, Ryan, and I have FOUR…Brooks (Senior), Brady (Freshman), Brynn (Fifth Grade), and Bryce (Fourth Grade). We have lived in Waunakee since Brooks was in First Grade, except for a few years when we escaped the cold winters and moved to Florida! However, we decided that we were most certainly “Midwest People” and after a few years, we returned home to Waunakee. Our family and friends are very happy that we are all reunited! We also have two dogs, Bucky and Baxter. Bucky is a cockapoo and Baxter is a Labradoodle. Bucky is calm and well-behaved and Baxter is…NOT! I am sure you will hear a lot of stories about Baxter this year!

I am very excited for the school year and I feel so lucky to have the opportunity to work at Peace again. I absolutely love working with so many wonderful people and I am positive we are going to have an amazing year!

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Julie Erickson

Julie Erickson

4K Classroom

Stacey Guelker

Faith Formation/Lunch Bunch

Peace Preschool is such a wonderful place! I feel privileged to be here where I can apply my endless desire to encourage and nurture children alongside the most caring professionals I've ever known. This is my fifth year substituting for teachers while also serving part-time in Faith Formation, Lunch Bunch and Wrap-Around Care.

Every moment in the preschool day provides great opportunities to develop important skills and learn valuable lessons about life. This includes growing emotionally, and I especially enjoy this side of what I can contribute to making the experiences of each child fulfilling.

I live in Waunakee with my husband, Jay, who is the library director at Prairie Elementary School. I'm proud to say that together we have devoted over 25 years to education. It has been a pleasure to volunteer, be a substitute for paraeducators in the district, and, most of all, become one of the teachers at Peace Preschool.

Prior to moving here in 2001, I managed the office of two family-owned companies in Two Rivers, applying the Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration I earned from UW-Whitewater. Small business appealed to me because I could be a part of all company operations while having close contact with customers and employees. Providing excellent service to everyone was my primary goal, and gradually I learned that my skills with compassion could make a difference to kids.

I love spending time with family and supporting their many endeavors, being outdoors appreciating living things, and sharing friendship with anyone in need of a special measure of kindness. One of my hobbies is making "Health Message Cards" for world medical mission projects using recycled greeting cards. I am also very interested in anything historical, primarily the life of Abraham Lincoln.

Abraham Lincoln said, "Whatever you are, be a good one." That sums up my philosophy, too. As I do my best daily, I often find strength in this Bible verse: "Commit your works to the Lord, and your thoughts will be established."
Proverbs 16:3 NKJV

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Stacey Guelker

Stacey Guelker

Faith Formation/Lunch Bunch

Debbie McGowen

Faith Formation/Lunch Bunch

Hello!  My name is Deb McGowan and this is my third year at Peace Preschool. I will be working with Faith Formation, Lunch Bunchers, and the Afternoon Sweeties. But, on Fridays, I will work alongside Miss Kim in the Dragonfly room. I cannot wait to get this new year rolling and I feel so fortunate to be part of this wonderful program we have
here at Peace!

Prior to working at Peace, I worked as a dental hygiene assistant for 24 years. I am so glad I decided to change my career path and couldn’t be happier with the path I amcurrently on.

Me and my husband Dan live in Waunakee and have 3 children. Abby(21) is currently attending University of Milwaukee and is majoring in Biochemistry with a minor in Spanish. Sarah(18) is a Freshman at University of Minnesota, Mankato and is going for Business/Marketing. Jack(16) is a Junior at Waunakee High School. You will find Jack either working at Piggly Wiggly or right here at Peace Lutheran working with kids in KIX or in the nursery.

I am so looking forward to another great year and I can’t wait to get to know each and everyone of you! I promise that I will do everything in my part to make his/her experience here a good one!!

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Debbie McGowen

Debbie McGowen

Faith Formation/Lunch Bunch

Sandy Esse

Preschool Librarian
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Sandy Esse

Sandy Esse

Preschool Librarian