Administrator and Support Staff

  • Mr. Brian Betts

    Principal

    I grew up in central Minnesota in a rural community outside of Kimball in which my family had a small hobby farm. I recieved a BA in elementary education with a concentration in Environmental Science from Concordia College St. Paul, MN. I later received a Masters in Educational Administration from Concordia University Wisconsin. It has been a blessing to serve at Immanuel in many roles since 1992 and currently serve as principal. I am the husband of Wendy and father to Caleb, Kaity, and Chassiya. I enjoy cooking, gardening, and time at the lake. 


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    God has been present in many things in my life at different levels. When my children were baptized into God's family God was present. When my father passed away and having the comfort that this is all in God’s hands was a comfort. In my role as administrator and having the opportunity to share Jesus with families while I am just the hands and feet of God. In times like these our God is Real and Present.  


    Fill in the blank: If I weren't so good at my job I'd probably be______________.

    A Farmer

     

    Hometown: Clearwater, MN

    Bachelor's Degree: Concordia University, St. Paul, MN

    Master's Degree: Educational Administration, Concordia University, Mequon, WI

  • Mrs. Sue Zolnik

    school secretary

    I am married to Craig and have 2 daughters, Danielle and Sadie Jo, son in law Ben and 3 grandchildren, Liam, Nora Jane, and Carson. I also have 2 dogs, Remington and Diesel. I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, walking, boating and reading. I have worked in a school setting for over 20 years with all age levels and truly enjoy working at Immanuel Lutheran School. God has blessed me richly with great family and friends!


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    A time when I felt Gods real presence was on my birthday when I was visiting my mom and she passed away 3 days later. 


    Choose a movie title for the story of your life.

    Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.


    Hometown: Menomonie, WI

  • Mrs. Susan Cour

    admissions counselor

    I grew up in a small suburb of Chicago. I have always had a love for children and animals. I originally attended college to be a biologist, with a life long dream of studying wolves in Yellowstone. However, God had other plans and I ended up graduating with a degree in Early Childhood Education. I taught in Illinois for several years and then at Immanuel for 1 year before staying home to have children. For the past almost 8 years I have been blessed to be serving as Admissions Counselor here at Immanuel. Last year I had the opportunity to step back into the classroom as well and I am enjoying my time teaching God's children. I love my career as I have the opportunity to meet new people, be around children, and still raise my family. God is amazing!



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    There are two situations that immediately popped into my head regarding God's REAL presence.  First, several years back my dad was diagnosed with cancer.  He has always been the rock in our family and I saw his struggle with his diagnosis. Yet in the midst of the uncertainty I could also feel God's presence as He guided each step of His journey and kept Him in His loving care.  He is fully recovered and we are grateful for God's goodness.

    I can also clearly feel God's presence when I am in His creation, specifically when I take time to admire it.  The stillness of a lake in the evening, the call of a loon, the roar of the ocean's waves, the width and depth of a canyon, the thrilling sound of a waterfall...I could go on and on.  In each of these moments I can truly feel God's presence in our crazy, chaotic world.


    Fill in the blank: If I were a superhero, my superhero power would be______.

    Invisibility. 

    With 4 children I would love to be able to disappear whenever I needed to do so. 



    Hometown: Island Lake, IL

    Bachelor's Degree: Early Childhood Education, Concordia University, River Forest, IL  Concentration: Psychology

  • Mrs. Wendy Betts

    reading interventionist and curriculum

    I grew up in a farming community in western Iowa. After college I spent one year teaching in Pittsburgh, PA. I have had many different teaching roles at Immanuel, and currently I am enjoying teaching 3rd grade English/Language Arts as well as being the reading interventionist. What I love most about teaching is sharing Jesus and my love for reading with my students. I enjoy gardening, fun at the lake such as swimming, canoeing, and fishing, and taking vacations to places I've never visited. I am the mom of three teenagers who keep me laughing.


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    I am the mother of 3 teenagers/young adults and spend everyday at school with children of different ages. I feel God’s real presence everyday as I reflect on His Word, and guide all the children in my life to realize God’s purpose for themselves. Fortunately I also feel God’s presence in my life each day as I learn from my children and students.


    Fill in the blank:  If I won the lottery tomorrow, I'd start a ________company. And, you know, keep working here.

    I would start a consulting company to support Lutheran Schools in their development and ministry needs and opportunities. 



    Hometown: Charter Oak, IA

    Bachelor's Degree: Bachelor in Education majoring in English and Health, Concordia University, Seward, NE

    Master's Degree: Educational Literacy with a Reading Teacher License and a Reading Specialist License, Concordia University, Mequon, WI

  • Mrs. Lee

    reading interventionist

    I was born and raised in Wisconsin Rapids and feel blessed to be part of the Immanuel teaching family. Everyday is an opportunity to share, learn, and grow in Jesus and His love. And, in 4th grade, everyday is an adventure! I enjoy working with this age group because the students have become a little more independent, yet they are curious and excited to learn. When I'm not in the classroom, I enjoy road trips, spending time at the lake, campfires, reading, and spending time with my family.


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    When my kids were little I was blessed to be able to stay at home with them. I had my teaching license and had always said that if I could choose which grade I taught I would want to teach 4th grade. As my kids got older and started getting to school age we decided that I would go back to work part time as my youngest would be in school half days for 4K. Both of our kids were going to school here at Immanuel and the year that Morgan started 4K a part time position opened up in 4th grade! I definitely felt God's real presence as he guided my family and I to be a part of the Immanuel family. Through teaching here I have become very interested in reading instruction and went back to school to add on to my teaching license. And God has given me another opportunity and adventure here at Immanuel that I will embark upon this year.  I can't wait to see what He has in store!


    Of the places you have visited, what's your favorite?

    My favorite place I've ever visited is a very tough question to answer. There are so many places I'd love to go back to and visit again. However, if I had to choose just one, I think I would pick the Narrows in Zion National Park. The beauty in the stone, the immensity of the cliffs, the serenity of the river, and the mix of people, cultures and languages had me awestruck. I could have hung out there all day taking in God's creations!



    Hometown: Wisconsin Rapids, WI

    Bachelor's Degree: Elementary Education, University of Wisconsin, Superior

    Minor: Social Studies

Childcare


  • Ms. Teresa Wells

    child care director and lead teacher

    I was born and raised in Lansing, Michigan (GO BLUE!). From a very early age I knew I wanted to become a teacher, yet it wasn’t until my own children were older that I started to pursue my dream. I went to work for the Head Start program in Lansing and was encouraged to take classes for early childhood. I attended Lansing Community College and received my Associate Degree in Child Development (2000). After a short break I went back and received my Bachelor Degree in Early Childhood (2010) and my Masters Degree in Education (2012) both form Ashford University in Clinton, Iowa. In 2013 I started teaching Early Childhood Education part time as an Adjunct Professor for Rasmussen College. After 25 years working for the Head Start program I resigned and accepted the position as Child Care Director and Teacher for Immanuel Lutheran School. I have been blessed with three amazing adult children and 7 awesome grandchildren, ranging in ages 7 months to 15 years. I also

    have a “fur baby”, Jazzy who is 8 years old.


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    When I first started looking into moving to Central Wisconsin I knew it wouldn’t be easy, yet God was there every step of the way, blessing me with finances, a new job,  and a new place to live. Once I accepted His plan and didn’t run from it, He opened all the doors necessary to ensure a transition.


    If you could choose your age for the rest of your life, what age would you

    be and why?

    I would have to say the age I am now. Still young enough to do the things in life I enjoy doing, yet old enough to see my grandchildren growing up. I marvel at how God has blessed each of my family members and continues to love, protect, and guide us.



    Hometown: Lansing, MI

    Associates Degree:  Child Development, Lansing Community College, MI

    Bachelor's Degree: Early Childhood Education, Ashford University, Clinton, Iowa.  

    Minor: Special Education

    Master's Degree:Education, Ashford University, Clinton, Iowa 

  • Mrs. Amy Seipel

    child care teacher

    My name is Amy Seipel. I'm married to an amazing man, Bill Seipel. We have four daughters. Our oldest is married and lives in Colorado. I like to read but mostly I love spending time with my family.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    I felt God's presence when my mom was battling cancer. I knew God would take care of my mom no matter what the outcome was.


    What is one of the things on your bucket list?

    One thing I would love to do is to travel to Europe with my husband.


    Hometown: Eau Claire, WI

    Chippewa Valley Technical College in Eau Claire, WI

    One year degree in Child Care Services

  • Mrs. Lisa Leverance

    child care teacher

    Ever since I was a little girl, I wanted to teach children. I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart for the little ones. I have provided child care in the Wisconsin Rapids area for over 30 years to a variety of ages. 


    I was born and raised in Wisconsin Rapids and went to a parochial grade school as a child. This opportunity instilled a passion for Jesus in my everyday life and a learning about his undying love for us.


    I’ve been married to my best friend, Tim for 28 ½ years. (Which by the way I met at the parochial grade school.) He works for Ocean Spray in Wisconsin Rapids as a

    maintenance planner. 


    We have 2 awesome children. Tyler who is 25 years old and lives in LaCrosse. He is an orthopedic surgical specialist for Stryker out of the LaCrosse area. Sarah who is 23 years old and is in her last year at UW- Oshkosh is going into public relations. She lives in Fond du Lac and works full time at the Nike Factory Outlet in Oshkosh. 


    Both Tyler and Sarah attended Immanuel Lutheran School from Kindergarten – 8 th grade and graduating. The education they received here is outstanding and still to this day has shaped their lives and relationship with Jesus.


    In my spare time I like to go to concerts, read and travel…especially to the beach. 

    I’m excited to be a part of Immanuel Lutheran School again and to help teach and share God's wonderful love for us.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    God has been present through out my life in many ways, almost too many to mention. He has been there through health issues, job loss, finances, family and death. I know God always has a plan and he is in control. The Lord will provide. I need to trust his ever-present love for me and let him handle these big and small things.


    What is your dream car?

    Don’t really have one. Anything that is comfortable and dependable, that

    needs no maintenance, doesn’t use gas or electricity, has an awesome music / sound

    system and just goes when needed.



    Hometown: Wisconsin Rapids, WI

    Associate's Degree: Early Childhood Education

    Mid-State Technical College, Wisconsin Rapids

Early Childhood and Elementary Staff

  • Miss Dian Schlichtmann

    4k teacher

    From the time I was little, teaching has been my passion. What a joy it is to spend my days teaching God's little ones about His love and promises. There is no better learning we will ever receive than to truly understand that "Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so!"  To God be the glory!



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    I felt God's real presence in my car as I drove through the huge April blizzard this year. HE drove and I'm so thankful He had the wheel!


    If you could pick up a new skill in an instant, what would it be?

    I'd love to have the skill to read the Bible in its original languages.



    Hometown: Hillsboro, ND

    Bachelor's Degree: Elementary Education, English Concentration, Concordia University, Seward, NE

    Minor: Primary Education

    Early Childhood Certificate from Pacific Lutheran University

  • Mrs. Tahnee Mueske

    morning 4K assistant

    Growing up on a farm in Western Kansas, I learned how to not only work hard, but play just as hard. I grew up with three sisters and instead of "getting dirty" in the field with my dad like my sisters, I opted to hone my skills and make the workers the "best fed" farmers in Kansas. This passion at a young age led me to pursue the culinary arts out of high school. I've been fortunate to travel across the world and been exposed to many different cultures. After graduation, I not only got to apprentice under some renowned Chefs in Belgium and France, but also found myself as a nanny for a sweet 10-month old named Ruby in Australia while her parents tended to a grape vineyard. This was the start of God whispering my destiny. 


    My heart has always been with children, but you become entranced with the world and it's demands and "making a means to an end", which brought me up the ranks of the hospitality industry. From serving at one of America's top restaurants in Boulder, CO to restaurant management and events directing at a private-friendly country club, I learned how to see the details, anticipate needs and deliver results. During my time of working in Colorado, God started to cultivate what He had planted as my path crossed with a divorcee who offered me an extra bedroom in her gorgeous home in exchange for me becoming a nanny to three precious kids. To this day, those kids feel as my own and I love them dearly. This was the awakening of a yearning I've always had to work with kids. Although at times it has been an exhausting game of tug-and-war on where I belong, I believe I am on the right path at Immanuel and look forward to meeting the children and not only loving on them and teaching them, but also learning FROM them. 



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    I was about 9 years old and was singing in the garage while my mother mowed the lawn just as the sun was setting. Suddenly I heard the most beautiful, angelic voice singing with me that filled the space and I just stopped, not in fear, but in amazement and awe. It only lasted for about 20 seconds but it brought a sense of peace and calm in my heart and I knew God was one with my innocence and my guardian angel worshiped alongside me.


    What do you think you will be doing 20 years from now?

    Twenty years from now, I plan on being content and happy. Who knows what I'll be doing, but whatever it is I pray that I will be at peace with where I'm at and made a difference with my life.



    Hometown: Goodland, Kansas

    Associate's Degree: Applied Science with the emphasis on Culinary Arts

    Colorado Institute of Art in Denver, CO

  • Ms. Sarah Albright

    afternoon 4K assistant

    I am a lifelong resident of Central Wisconsin - aside from my college years in the Twin Cities. I have been a member of ILC since 1985 and graduated from ILS in 1991. To say Immanuel has had a positive impact on my life is putting it mildly. I’m looking forward to spending my afternoons with the 4K class & learning to view God's creation through their joy-filled eyes. I’m a mom to 3 amazing kids - Alex, Abigail & Sadie and enjoy most types of crafting and all types of traveling. 



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    Just over a year ago my husband (Brian) suddenly passed away. In the moments, days, weeks & months that have followed I’ve continually felt God’s incredibly real presence. He has, thankfully, been with the kids & I as we walk this new, unexpected & rocky road. We have no idea what our future holds, but we know the one who holds it and are able to find peace in that.


    What is something you would like to do in the next year that you have never done before?

    I’ve done a lot of things in the last year that I have never done before, but one additional thing that I’d like to accomplish is to have intentional quiet time with the Lord each morning.



    Hometown: Vesper, WI


  • Mrs. Rachel Benson

    kindergarten teacher

    I grew up in a small town MN and eventually moved to the Twin Cities for school.

    I graduated from Concordia University, Saint Paul, MN. It was here where I met my

    best friend who is also now my husband David and it was there that our adventures

    began. We have been married 3 years and welcomed our son Dylan into the world this past April (2018). Along with teaching Kindergarten, music and sports are two other passions of mine. I have been blessed at Immanuel to teach Handbells and help

    coach track. I also help run tech (slides and sound) at church and occasionally sing on

    the worship team. I love being outdoors: camping, swimming, running, biking, playing catch… you name it, I like it. I am also a big sports person. My favorite sports teams are the MN Vikings, MN Twins and the MN Wild. (Yes, I am a MN Girl and always will be). People would describe me as friendly, outgoing and energetic which is why I love to teach the little ones.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    Every time I look at my son, Dylan. I see him changing, growing and

    experiencing the world in his own way. With every smile laugh and cry, I just can’t help but think what a beautiful job God did when he created him. God made him for us and no matter how exciting or scary things get, I ask the Lord to show David and I how to be the best parents we can be for him.


    Fill in the blank:  My favorite word in the English language is_____________.

    Breathe Two words: Just Breathe. God has designed our bodies to do this

    without even thinking about it… how amazing. However in our world today I find myself

    reminding my body and brain to just breathe. Life moves fast and it gets stressful so

    again just breathe. I love music so much and this song couldn’t be a better example, so

    enjoy!     https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bf3sJGF7fmo



    Hometown: Finlayson, MN

    Bachelor's Degree: Elementary Education K-6 with a Pre-Primary Endorsement, 

    Concordia University, St. Paul, MN

    Minors: Confessional Lutheranism and Music

  • Mrs. Pam DeRoche

    kindergarten teacher assistant

    I am originally from the Chicago suburbs but have lived in Lisbon, Portugal for almost 2 years and here in central Wisconsin for 13 years. I am grateful to be married to my best friend Dan and also grateful to be a mom to our daughter Abby and son, Jared. Working with children and letting them know they are special and dearly loved by God is a passion of mine. In my free time I enjoy baking, gardening, walking, and hanging out with my family.


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    I am thankful to have known God’s real presence since I was very little.  I was taught early on that God is my closest friend and is always with me.  Often as I walked to school as a little girl, I would picture Jesus walking along with me, holding my hand.  I still know He holds my hand as I walk through life as an adult. Thankfully, He never lets go!

    Hometown: South Elgin, IL


    Fill in the blank: Three words that describe me are__________.


    Bachelor's Degree:  Elementary Education

    Trinity International University, Deerfield, IL

  • Mrs. Jersey Dykes

    first grade teacher

    I grew up in a big suburb of Minnesota and recently moved to Wisconsin with my husband, Brett. My husband is a youth pastor in Port Edwards. We have a small dog, Dunkin Donut! I enjoy trying new coffee shops around the area, traveling, baking, and spending my free time with friends and family. I worked at Immanuel last year as an aide in the 4K room and as the childcare teacher. It is a privilege to be able to teach 1st grade this year and share my faith and love for Jesus! 



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    I felt God’s real presence as soon as I got baptized in high school. My mom and older sister went with me on a missions trip where I had the opportunity to get baptized. As soon as I came up from the water, I knew I was changed from the inside out. It was a beautiful experience and I will never forget it! 


    If you were a pasta shape, what shape would you be and why?

    If I were a pasta shape I would be bow tie. I am always in the mood to dress fancy and who doesn’t love pasta that looks like tiny little bow ties!  



    Hometown: Lakeville, MN

    Degree: Elementary Education from North Central University, MNI

    Minor: Bible

  • Ms. Sandy Hoefling

    first and second grade teacher assistant

    My name is Sandy Hoefling.  I have 6 children: Bobby, Toby, Chase, Travis, Faith, and Hope.  I also have a grandson, Dominic. My two youngest children go to Immanuel. I grew up and went to school in northeastern Illinois and I moved to central Wisconsin in 2000.


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

  • Mrs. Sharon Dykstra

    second grade teacher

    I was born in Illinois and grew up in Des Plaines, Illinois where I attended Immanuel Lutheran and Maine West High School. During those years I was involved in volleyball, badminton, and played the clarinet in concert and marching band. After high school I attended Valparaiso University and Concordia University in Chicago, where I received my teaching degree. My first teaching call brought me here to teach first grade, but through the years I have enjoyed teaching second, third, and even a few classes in sixth and eighth grade. Presently I am looking forward to spending my days with a room full of eager, second graders. What a blessing it is to spend my days sharing the love of Jesus with these little ones! I am married to my husband, Mark. We have been blessed with three sons-Keith, Kevin, and Steven. When I

    am not busy in the classroom or doing school work, I like to spend time with Mark and also visit our sons. Together we take walks with our dogs, Sophie and Smokey. I also enjoy taking long bike rides, playing board games, and doing some scrapbooking when I have time.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    God has certainly been present throughout my life, both at low points and at high points. One area in which I have felt His presence is in prayer, and reflecting on how he has answered my prayers. However, for this question I am going to go back in time to my confirmation and first communion. During those two times I felt a special closeness to Him; His grace and love surrounded me.


    If you could choose one hobby that now seems out of your reach either financially or time-wise, what hobby would you take up and why?

    I do love to see all of the diverse areas of our country, the national parks, the historical cities, and the just plain fun places, so it would be cool to hop in a mobile home or pull a camper and just tour the country! I also think it would be neat to travel to Europe and experience the beauty and culture of different countries.



    Hometown: Des Plaines, IL

    Bachelor's Degree: Elementary Education, Concordia University, River Forest, IL Concentration: Early Childhood and Math

Middle School Staff

  • Mrs. Susan Cour

    third grade co-teacher

    I grew up in a small suburb of Chicago. I have always had a love for children and animals. I originally attended college to be a biologist, with a life long dream of studying wolves in Yellowstone. However, God had other plans and I ended up graduating with a degree in Early Childhood Education. I taught in Illinois for several years and then at Immanuel for 1 year before staying home to have children. For the past almost 9 years I have been blessed to be serving as Admissions Counselor here at Immanuel. Two years ago I had the opportunity to step back into the classroom as well and I am enjoying my time teaching God's children. I love my career as I have the opportunity to meet new people, be around children, and still raise my family. God is amazing!



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    There are two situations that immediately popped into my head regarding God's REAL presence.  First, several years back my dad was diagnosed with cancer.  He has always been the rock in our family and I saw his struggle with his diagnosis. Yet in the midst of the uncertainty I could also feel God's presence as He guided each step of His journey and kept Him in His loving care.  He is fully recovered and we are grateful for God's goodness.

    I can also clearly feel God's presence when I am in His creation, specifically when I take time to admire it.  The stillness of a lake in the evening, the call of a loon, the roar of the ocean's waves, the width and depth of a canyon, the thrilling sound of a waterfall...I could go on and on.  In each of these moments I can truly feel God's presence in our crazy, chaotic world.


    Fill in the blank: If I were a superhero, my superhero power would be______.

    Invisibility. 

    With 4 children I would love to be able to disappear whenever I needed to do so. 


    Hometown: Island Lake, IL

    Bachelor's Degree: Early Childhood Education, Concordia University, River Forest, IL Concentration: Psychology

  • Mrs. Cara Lee

    third grade co-teacher and art

    I was born and raised in Wisconsin Rapids and feel blessed to be part of the Immanuel teaching family. Everyday is an opportunity to share, learn, and grow in Jesus and His love. And, in 4th grade, everyday is an adventure! I enjoy working with this age group because the students have become a little more independent, yet they are curious and excited to learn. When I'm not in the classroom, I enjoy road trips, spending time at the lake, campfires, reading, and spending time with my family.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    When my kids were little I was blessed to be able to stay at home with them. I had my teaching license and had always said that if I could choose which grade I taught I would want to teach 4th grade. As my kids got older and started getting to school age we decided that I would go back to work part time as my youngest would be in school half days for 4K. Both of our kids were going to school here at Immanuel and the year that Morgan started 4K a part time position opened up in 4th grade! I definitely felt God's real presence as he guided my family and I to be a part of the Immanuel family. Through teaching here I have become very interested in reading instruction and went back to school to add on to my teaching license. And God has given me another opportunity and adventure here at Immanuel that I will embark upon this year.  I can't wait to see what He has in store!


    Of the places you have visited, what's your favorite?

    My favorite place I've ever visited is a very tough question to answer. There are so many places I'd love to go back to and visit again. However, if I had to choose just one, I think I would pick the Narrows in Zion National Park. The beauty in the stone, the immensity of the cliffs, the serenity of the river, and the mix of people, cultures and languages had me awestruck. I could have hung out there all day taking in God's creations!



    Hometown: Wisconsin Rapids, WI

    Bachelor's Degree: Elementary Education, University of Wisconsin, Superior

    Minor: Social Studies

  • Mrs. Julie Beck

    fourth grade teacher

    I have been abundantly blessed by God’s faithfulness and His most recent blessing was the opportunity to become a part of the Immanuel Lutheran family.


    I was born in Orlando, Florida which helps explain why Mickey Mouse and I are like family. I have lived in St. Louis (Go Cards!) for most of my life. I was baptized and confirmed at St. Lucas Lutheran. After graduating from Lutheran High School South, I lived in Chicago, Illinois while attending Concordia University, River Forest, which is where I met my husband, Matt. God made it clear that it was time to

    go back home and I got my education degree at the University of Missouri - St. Louis. I have always loved teaching and I come from a long line of Lutheran teachers and pastors.


    Matt and I were married on June 12, 2010, joined by many friends and family. Our only child, Sophie, was born on December 28, 2012. She brings us so much joy and you may be glad to know that she has always been a Packers fan. Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD. The first time that I held Sophie in my arms, I felt God’s love like never before. I truly cannot describe the awe and love of that moment. 


    I have experience teaching every grade from 1 st-8 th except 2nd. My favorite hobbies include reading, trivia, musicals, playing board games, and traveling but none of those compare to my greatest love – sharing the love of Jesus. The classroom is an amazing platform to encourage disciples to make disciples. “If we have died with Him, we will also live with Him; if we endure, we will also reign with

    Him; if we deny Him, He will also deny us; if we are faithless, He remains faithful – for He cannot deny Himself.” 2 Timothy 2:11-13


    God is always faithful even when we are scared and forget to rely upon Him. I love the story of Esther. God is not even mentioned and yet He is faithful. In Esther 4:14, as Esther is scared for her life, she is encouraged by Mordecai when he tells her that this very moment, may be the moment for which she was created. Our lives are made up of these moments and I can’t wait to spend some with my 4th grade class.



    Hometown: Orlando, FL

    Bachelor's Degree: Education, University of Missouri, St. Louis


  • Ms. Cortney Hahn

    fifth grade teacher

    I was born and raised in Wisconsin Rapids and I attended Immanuel from Kindergarten through 8th grade. The lessons learned, the firm foundation of my faith set, and the strong friendships that were formed at Immanuel have truly shaped my life. I'm so fortunate to have attended this school; and I am incredibly blessed to be back at Immanuel teaching and sharing my faith with these great kids! When I'm not in the classroom, my husband Devin and I enjoy boating, fishing, swimming, campfires, and just about whatever adventure comes our way.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    Recently my dad was in a dangerous car accident. God was with him and kept him safe from any major life-threatening injuries.


    Fill in the blank: If I could invent a holiday, it would definitely involve_______.

    ...wearing hats and singing around campfires.



    Hometown: Wisconsin Rapids, WI

    Bachelor's Degree: Anthropology, University of MN, Duluth

    Bachelor's Degree: Secondary Social Studies Education, University of MN, Duluth

    Minor: Outdoor Education

Junior High Staff

  • Ms. Melody Czarapata

    sixth grade homeroom teacher

    I was born and raised in Wausau, Wisconsin and am happy to be starting my fourth year of teaching in the northwoods. I feel blessed to be a part of the Immanuel family, serving as the 6th grade homeroom and 8th grade English Language Arts teacher. I am overwhelmed with joy for the opportunity to share my passion for learning and Christ with my students each and every day. When I'm not in the classroom, I enjoy camping, reading, cheering on the Packers/Brewers, Netflix, and visiting with friends and family.

     


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    A time in my life when I felt God's real presence was during the 2007 National Youth Gathering in Orlando, Florida. So many Christians together in one place praising God!


    Fill in the blank: The most important thing I learned in high school was______________.

    The most important thing I learned in high school was that friends and boyfriends come and go, but your relationship with God is forever. His unfailing love is always there.



    Hometown: Wausau, WI

    Bachelor's Degree: Elementary Education, Double Minor in English and Science, Concordia University, Mequon, WI

  • Mr. Robert Judziewicz

    seventh grade homeroom teacher, physical education, recess supervisor

    I grew up and went to school in Greenfield, WI. I have been married to my wife Traci for 13 years and we have a son Andrew who is 11 and a daughter Kelsi who is 9.  I graduated with PE, Health, and APE in 2001 from UWSP.  The past 5 years I taught at Pacelli Catholic Middle School.  I look forward to the excitement and challenges at Immanuel Lutheran School. 



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.


    Share a personal fact no one would ever guess about you.

    I was in a rock band in high school.



    Hometown: Greenfield, WI

    UWSP: PE, Health, and APE

  • Mrs. Rebekah Drewiske

    seventh grade ELA and science

    I was born and raised in Lansing, Michigan. I began my teaching career at ILS in 1997 as a brand new graduate of Concordia University in River Forest, IL.I have been married for 16 years and a stay-at-home mom for 14 years. I have remained involved at ILS in various ways including being a substitute teacher, auction committee member, and room parent. This year is the only year that all 3 of my children will attend ILS together. This year begins a new phase in our lives as parents of a high schooler.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    EVERY DAY there is something that reminds me that God is real and present in my life...from the beauty of His creation to how the daily events of my life play out. Currently I am on the call committee for finding a Senior Pastor here at Immanuel. We are committed as a group to be led by the Holy Spirit, putting aside our own desires or agendas to really listen.  During one recent meeting I was really struggling for an answer to be made abundantly clear to me.  I prayed for wisdom and guidance and God led me to the answer He wanted and filled me with clarity and peace.  God is REAL.  God is PRESENT.


    You're a new addition to the crayon box.  What color would you be and why?

    I would be a neon green crayon because I tend to stand out in a crowd. I love to have fun and I’m not afraid to share the joy of Jesus with those around me. 



    Hometown: Lansing, MI

    Bachelor's in Education from Concordia University River Forest

  • Mr. Matthew Beck

    eighth grade homeroom teacher

    I grew up in a suburb of St. Louis, about 30 minutes south of the city. I love my hometown, especially the Cardinals and Ted Drewes frozen custard. I was a member at Faith Lutheran Church in Oakville since I was 6, and many great friendships formed there. Through the youth group at Faith, God helped to solidify my faith, and after going on several mission trips to places like Florida, Arizona, and Puerto Rico,

    I knew that I wanted to serve God by sharing His love with others.


    I went to Concordia River Forest to become a DCE, but God had a different plan in mind, and a few years later I graduated in 2012 from the University of Missouri, St. Louis with a bachelor’s degree in education. While at Concordia I met my future wife, Julie, in a praise band that did lock-ins at local churches. She sang and played keyboard, and I played bass guitar. We were married in 2010, and had our only child,

    Sophie, in December of 2012. Since then I have worked for Special School District in St. Louis. I really enjoyed my time there, but I am happy to be here at Immanuel, and to be back in Lutheran education. God made it very clear to Julie and me that he was calling us here to Immanuel Lutheran School, and we are excited to be using our talents to serve the students and families of central Wisconsin.


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    I felt God’s presence in my life when I first saw my daughter, Sophie. I knew He gave Julie and me such a precious gift, and it would be our responsibility to raise her. I also knew that He would be with us every step of the way. There is no comparison to seeing your child for the first time. I knew God was there with us, blessing our family, just as He is today.


    If you could be any animal in the world, which one would you be and why?


    Hometown: St. Louis, Missouri

    Bachelor's Degree: Education, University of Missouri, St. Louis

Other Support Staff

  • Mrs. Ruth Macomber

    art teacher

    I was born in Southern Illinois, a "flat-lander".


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.



    Hometown: Newton, IL

    Bachelor's Degree: Art Education, University of Wisconsin; Superior, WI

    Lifetime State of Wisconsin License in K-12 Art Education

    Masters in Education

  • Ms. Hannah Maher

    a.m. and p.m. cougar kids


    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.



    Hometown: St. Paul, MN

    Any Degrees: AA, Working on BA

  • Mrs. Rebekah Drewiske

    scrip coordinator

    I was born and raised in Lansing, Michigan. I began my teaching career at ILS in 1997 as a brand new graduate of Concordia University in River Forest, IL.I have been married for 16 years and a stay-at-home mom for 14 years. I have remained involved at ILS in various ways including being a substitute teacher, auction committee member, and room parent. This year is the only year that all 3 of my children will attend ILS together. This year begins a new phase in our lives as parents of a high schooler.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.


    You're a new addition to the crayon box.  What color would you be and why?


    Hometown: Lansing, MI

    Bachelor's in Education from Concordia University River Forest

  • Mrs. Hannah Elgersma

    head cook

    I grew up in a small town on the northern side of Lake Erie in Ontario, Canada. Having attended a Christian elementary and high school, I fully appreciate the benefits of a Christian education. Additionally, my three children have been blessed to attend Immanuel. I enjoy serving God by serving food to the multitudes of children that pass through Immanuel's doors each year. And when I'm not doing that, my favorite activities include spending time with my husband and children, gardening, reading, stamping, and cooking.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    God's real presence has been with me at many times in my life, throughout happy events and trials as well.  I am always amazed at the blessings that He shares, and I am humbled when He displays the splendour of His creation in a majestic sunrise or sunset.


    If you could have dinner with someone who is alive or dead, other than God, who would it be and why?

    I would like to have dinner with Queen Elizabeth II. I greatly respect the Queen's humility, as she constantly serves the Lord throughout all the ups and downs in her life.


    Hometown: Waterford, Ontario, Canada

  • Mrs. Deb Fillmore

    hot lunch bookkeeper

    My husband Matt and I have been married for 19 years and we have two children and a kitty named Holly. Kyle is a student at Mid-State Technical College and Morgan is in 10th grade at Lincoln High. Both of our children went to ILS from Kindergarten through 8th grade. For 9 years I provided in-home daycare for several of Immanuel's teachers and parents so I am most known as Ms. Deb to the kids. Our family enjoys watching all sports, especially football, baseball and hockey. This year is the 5th year we have hosted a player for the Wisconsin Rapids Riverkings hockey team. In my spare time I enjoy walks around the lake, painting, cleaning, reading and playing games on Wednesday's for Fillmore Family Fun Night.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.

    I felt God's real presence when our son Kyle was born. He was 6 weeks premature and weighed only 3 pounds. With lots of prayers and patience, he gained weight everyday and was able to come home after just 3 weeks of staying in the NICU.


    Fill in the blank:  When I was 5 years old I wanted to be a ___________.

    Nurse



    Hometown: Nekoosa, WI

    B.S. in Retail Studies from UW Stevens Point

  • Mrs. Cheryl Verhulst

    librarian

    I have been married 37 years and have two children. We were also foster parents for 12 years and helped raise over 50 children from 6 months to 18 years old. My grandson attends Immanuel and is in the 3rd grade.


    I taught in a Christian school for 10 years in Iowa, teaching junior and senior high math, literature, choir, band, drama, and working with the sports program. I also worked as an adjunct instructor in the Math and Science department of the local community college. We moved here in 2002 and I became the administrator of Community Christian Academy until it closed in 2008. 


    I now work at McMillan Library in both the customer service and technical service areas. I attend Faith Reformed Church and am in charge of the Children's Church program there.



    Our theme this year is REAL.PRESENT.GOD.  Name a time in your life when you felt God’s real presence.


    A time when I really felt God was during the time I went through the experiencing God Bible study with my students at CCA.


    What was your favorite childhood toy?

    Tinker Toys


    Hometown: Sheboygan Falls, WI

    Bachelors in Elementary Education from Central College, Pella, IA

    Major in Math from Coe College, Cedar Rapids, IA

    Masters in Educational Administration from Drake University, Des Moines, IA

    Food Handling Certification from the state of Wisconsin

    I was certified as a teacher K-12 and Principal K-12


  • Judy Papineau

    hot lunch assistant