New Board Members (and 1 Returning)

The ELCA Youth Ministry Network’s Board of Directors met last weekend in the Minneapolis area.  It was a good meeting, and in the near future you’ll be hearing more about the conversations and dreams that came out of the conversation there.

Erik Ullestad

One of the tasks the board takes on in its annual fall meeting is the appointment of new members of the Board.  This year there were 3 seats on the Board that were “up” for election or renewal.  Here is the process that is used:

  • At the February meeting the year prior, a nominating committee is appointed.  The committee is made up of 2 currentBoardmembers, 2 Regional Facilitators and 1 “at-large” member.
  • The openings are announced in March or April, and nominations are taken online through July.
  • The Nominating committee meets by conference call or online meeting and culls through the nominations and chooses a slate of candidates, matching the number of open seats on the Board.
  • References are checked for all the candidates on the slate.
  • The Board is presented the slate in October.  The Board either accepts the slate as a whole, or sends it back to the Nominating Committee for more work or re-thinking.  If this happens, the Committee does its additional work and

    Ben Morris

    the slate is re-presented to the Board who approves by e-mail.

  • The newly selected Board members begin their work at the end of the next Extravaganza.
This year the 3 seats were filled by two new members, and one current member whose term was renewed.

Erik Ullestad is the Director of Family Life and Youth Ministry at Windsor Heights Lutheran Church in West Des Moine, Iowa.  He ismarried to Alllison.  Originally from Cedar Falls, Iowa, Erik’s undergrad degree is in Music Education from Wartburg College.  Erik is a “big picture” thinker who asks great questions.  He is interested in the misional church, and has done writing for both Augsburg Fortress and FaithLens.  He also writes for his own blog.  Erik was a member of the ELCA’s LIFT Taskforce.  This will be Erik’s first term.

Rev. Ben Morris is the Associate Pastor of Youth, Culture and Mission at Holy Cross Evangelical Lutheran Church in Livonia, Michigan.  Ben did his undergraduate work at Central Michigan University and received his m.div at Wartburg Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa.  Ben is married to Jennifer, and has a background working in outdoor ministry as well as Youthworks.  This will be Ben’s first term.

Julie Miller

Julie Miller has completed a term serving on the Network Board of Directors.  She lives with her husband, Scott, in Highlands Ranch, Colorado.  Julie recently left her congregation, Joy Lutheran Church in Parker, Colorado, to pursue a new call.  She is now a student in a master’s degree program studying psychology.  Her goal is to become a counselor, focusing on children and youth.  In the meantime, she is volunteering at Bethany Lutheran Church and at House for All Sinners and Saints.

Welcome to Erik and Ben, and welcome back to Julie.  We are grateful for your service!

If you’re interested in all of the folks involved in Network leadership, please visit the Leadership Roster.

  1. I couldn’t be more pleased with the new Board members. Thank you to Todd and the entire leadership of the Network for your hard work and to Erik and Ben for accepting this new challenge with joyful hearts. See you in NOLA!


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