Senior Pastor – Lyle McKee
I was called to St. Thomas in 2004 after serving for more than twenty years in urban ministry at three different congregations in Indiana and Kentucky. It is a delightful challenge to be part of this vibrant, diverse, and gifted group of people. My heart has been taken with various calls over the years, enjoyed within the context of ministry-—community organizing, coalition ministry, work with urban youth, and most recently care for God’s good creation. I also love music and thoroughly appreciate both the penchant for enthusiastic Lutheran hymn-singing and the opportunity to intone some portions of the liturgy. St. Thomas is a great place to be and to serve. Contact me at email@example.com.
Adult Choir Conductor – Katie Gardiner
Katie Gardiner is thrilled to be making music at St. Thomas. Currently, she is pursuing a Doctorate degree in Choral Conducting at the Jacobs School of Music. Katie was on the music faculty at Skidmore College as Choral Director and Lecturer in Music from 2011-2018, conducting the Skidmore Community Chorus, Vocal Chamber Ensemble, and teaching a course in Music Theory. An active musician in the region, she also conducted the ensembles at Williams College and the University at Albany. As a passionate music educator, Katie has worked with students of all ages and abilities. She holds Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Music Education (vocal emphasis and pedagogy emphasis) from the Hartt School of Music and a Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from the Eastman School of Music. Katie has studied conducting with Dominick DiOrio, Betsey Burleigh, William Weinert, Simon Carrington, and Brad Lubman. Prior to her position at Skidmore College, she conducted the Eastman Conducting Orchestra, Repertory Singers, and assisted with the Women’s Chorus, as well as teaching middle and high school choruses. At the Eastman School of music, she has performed as a member of the acclaimed ensemble, “Voices.” A Connecticut native, Katie resided in Vermont since 2007 before becoming a part of the Bloomington community.
Organist – Mike Powell
I am a church musician, recitalist, and composer of sacred music. I recently completed the Master of Music degree in organ performance and sacred music at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, and received my Bachelor of Music in 2010 from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. I’m also an Associate of the American Guild of Organists. I grew up in the Lutheran tradition and am excited to serve in such a vibrant community. I live in Bloomington with my wife, Susan (also a church musician by trade), and my two kids, Jacob and Meredith. When I’m not on the organ bench or hanging out with the kiddos, you might find me running the B-Line trail or working under the hood of a car.
Minister of Youth and Christian Nurture – Amy Balcam
Amy comes to us with 24 years’ experience working with children, adolescents, and families through her work as a mental health counselor and school psychologist. Amy is married, has a teenage son, and two teenage stepsons.
Children’s Choir Director – Melissa de Graaf
I am delighted to be taking on the role of Children’s Choir Director at St. Thomas. I have a long and varied musical background. as a music professor at the University of Miami, as a youth choir director, and leading a music and movement program for preschoolers at a former church in Florida. I am now a stay-at-home mom, as well as a Girl Scout troop leader. My husband, Justin Rust, and I have two daughters–Sophia and Mary. I enjoy working with the young singers of St. Thomas to praise God, have fun, and learn some things along the way.
Parish Administrator – Susan Krieg Being a life-long Lutheran and Hoosier, I have strong roots. The small rural church in which I was baptized and confirmed was established in 1848 by German immigrants, which included my own ancestors. I grew up attending Lutheran school and Lutheran summer camp. I am a graduate of Indiana University. You might say I am a rule-following God-fearing basketball-loving hymn-singing euchre-playing beer-drinking grace-accepting German Lutheran Hoosier.
Records Manager – Mona Baker I am the new Records Manager, just starting in January 2019. I have worked in Bloomington for twenty-some years as a bookkeeper or an administrative assistant for several companies. I’m a graduate of Indiana University. In the summer I like gardening and working with flowers in our yard with my husband Eric.