Bishop Kristen Kuempel was born and raised in Eastern Washington (with a few years in Montana for good measure). She graduated with a degree in Developmental Psychology from Eastern Washington University, and attended seminary at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. She has worked with congregations in the Twin Cities, North Dakota, Kansas and served most recently as Lead Pastor at First Lutheran Church in Kennewick, Washington.
She is a passionate supporter of campus and outdoor ministries, believing these are two areas where future faith leaders are born--leaders that will be well-equipped to face the changes that are sweeping across our culture and changing our churches in ways we still don't entirely understand. She believes that technology is a tool that can be used to create community among vast distances and across various philosophies, and will use that tool to help foster a needed sense of connection throughout the Eastern Washington-Idaho (+Wyoming!) synod.
You can follow her on Facebook at Bishop Kristen Kuempel.
Phylis Stromme, born and raised in western North Dakota, lived in Minnesota before moving to Washington State in 1990. Ordained in 2006, she has served as interim pastor in 8 congregation in the last 13 years in eastern Washington and northern Idaho so, she has lived, explored and traveled in the areas she is called to serve as a Net-Worker. Pastor Strome's experience and skills developed in this synod as a Transformational Ministry Leader, Coach, Behavioral Interview Trainer for Call Committees and a Healthy Congregations Trainer lend experience to working with congregations as a Net-Worker.
Pastor Stromme was an Associate in Ministry (AIM) for 10 years serving as Supply Pastor; counselor/therapist at Lutheran Community Services, Kennewick, WA and Social Worker and Bereavement Care Coordinator for Hospice, The Chaplaincy, Kennewick, WA; and also worked as a social worker in hospital and home health care. She is also a Licensed Social Worker in Washington.
David Kappus is excited to be a part of this new adventure in the EWA-ID Synod! He serves Central Lutheran Church in Spokane as their pastor and has gotten to know many of the people and areas around Spokane in the last decade. Dave was ordained in Western North Dakota in 1990 and has spent half of his pastoral ministry in rural communities.
David is a pastor, actor, musician, motorcyclist, avid reader, and animal lover. You may have seen him (or heard his drumming) on (or behind) several area stages. He lives in the Spokane Valley with his wife, Theresa, and their pets Stella and Rory (the dogs) and Hermione and Pumpkin (the cats). Dave and Theresa were married in 1995 and despite the dire predictions that a marriage between a pastor and librarian would be “categorically dull”, they have persevered to make it quite interesting indeed!
Cathy has served in the Eastern Washington-Idaho Synod office as one of the Administrative Assistants since 1999. Cathy provides staff support in the areas of financial management, candidacy, and travel.
Cathy enjoys participating with and has served on the board of the Lutheran Staff Association. She is married to Mark Steiner and has two grown sons, Mitchell and Michael.
Gib comes to us from the staff at St. Mark's - Spokane, WA. A long time Spokane resident, he loves living here with his wife, son, a dog and a cat. Most of the rest of his family also live nearby. Born in Michigan, he relocated to Spokane while serving in the Air Force at Fairchild AFB. He is pleased to say that he's been a member of St. Mark's for what seems like his whole life, and has enjoyed getting to know their staff and members in that time.
He has a broad background in message sharing, having worked for and with government agencies, private businesses and non-profits in creative, teaching, training and branding roles. He enjoys blending his creative abilities and technical skills to produce communication pieces that are effective and visually appealing. He is looking forward to promoting the message of the Synod, improving the flow of communication in all directions, and helping individual congregations to do the same.