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Presenter Bios

Pastor Robert Balza

  • Enhancing Worship With Powerpoint - 4A-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 1A-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am
  • Panel Session: Church Technology - 3A - Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm

Robert Balza, pastor at Eternal Love Lutheran in Appleton, WI, has 13 years of experience in preparing and using visuals in worship services. His goal is to use visuals to enhance the unified theme of a worship service and to assist visual learners like himself to better understand and remember the Scriptural truths presented in a worship service.

Steve Boettcher

  • Media: Friend or Foe? - Keynote-Thursday 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm
Steve Boettcher is a five-time Emmy winning television and media producer. His work has appeared on national PBS, ESPN, Discovery Channel, BBC and other media outlets. He has served as the producer of WELS Connection for the past 27 years and Kids Connection for 20 years. He is currently producing the third film in a series that includes Road to Emmaus and Come Follow Me. For a complete list of Steve's work in media visit his IMDB page.

Allan Bunt

  • Creating Worship Music for Non Musicians - 2I-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 1I-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am

I am just a regular Lutheran who likes to tinker.  I have been the engineer and "Organeer" (Term coined by my congregation) at Good Shepherd Lutheran in Wisconsin Rapids, WI since 2009-2010.  Our beloved Organist/Pianist retired and we had no one to take over music production.  I was asked if I could make HymnSoft work on our Eminent organ.  What started as a "short term" assignment has turned into a passion of mine.  With no Organist candidates in our congregation willing to step-in at the time, I assumed the role and made the technology work.  I have been able to recruit other congregation members and some youth helpers to pitch in and "play" for the congregation for worship services, funerals, and weddings, I also work with the choir director to provide accompaniment for their performances.

Pastor Emile Burgess

  • Polished Email Campaigns Using MailChimp - 1C-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 5C-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm
  • Productive Workflow Using Evernote - 4C-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 2D-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am

Pastor Emile Burgess is an adult convert to Christianity and became a WELS Lutheran in college in Sacramento, California. He eventually decided to study for the ministry and graduation from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in 2007. He was assigned as an associate pastor to Trinity Lutheran in Caledonia, WI, who called him to help them focus their efforts in Evangelism and Technology. Three years ago, he began using MailChimp to send daily and weekly emails to his congregation in an effort to improve communication and edification for his members. He will also share a few ideas about involving lay members in this kind of ongoing project. Pastor Burgess met his bride of 10 years, Rachel (nee Perry), at Martin Luther College. They have a daughter, Lydia, who is almost 18 months old.

José Daniel Delgadillo

  • Using Mobile Technology to Proclaim the Gospel in the Homes of People in Latin America - 5D-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 2E-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am

José Daniel Delgadillo is a lay member of our sister church in Bogotá, Colombia. He is an audio technician by profession and a developer of Academia Cristo video courses.

Kevin Draper

  • Google Calendar for Church and School - 3E-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm, 5D-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm

Kevin grew up in Michigan and worked in a variety of computer related fields in Michigan and Texas.  After deciding on a career change, he served as a pastor for six years.  He now works as a programmer in the WELS Technology office.  Kevin lives in New Ulm, MN with his beautiful wife, Sallie, and three teenage sons.

Sallie Draper

  • Managing Your Church or School Website with FinalWeb 101 - 1D-Thursday 8:00 am to 11:45 am
  • Managing Your Church or School Website with FinalWeb 201 - 2D-Thursday 1:15 pm to 5:00 pm
  • Gather Information in a Snap with Google Forms - 2D-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 1C-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am
  • Image Editing in the Cloud - 4I-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 4I-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm

Sallie Draper’s role as Technology Trainer for WELS allows her to do three of her favorite things – work with computers, learn loads of new things, and teach others. In addition to training synod employees and volunteers on the various software solutions adopted by the synod, Sallie also enjoys supporting WELS congregations, schools and members at large on an assortment of tech-related topics including congregational web sites and church management software solutions.

A graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, Sallie previously taught high school math and performed statistical reporting for BlueCross BlueShield of Texas. She is blessed to be wife to Kevin and  mom to three sons.

Julie Duran

  • Build-A-Site: Front to Back - WordPress - 2A-Thursday 1:15 pm to 5:00 pm
Julie Duran, WELS technology software services director, began her technical career as a COBOL programmer and moved into system administration. In 1996 WELS communicated a need for a Web presence, so she moved into the Webmaster position. As technology evolved and demand increased more staff was hired and her position grew into the web technology manager. She is experienced with web site development using various solutions such as Drupal, SharePoint, Blackbaud Net Community Spark, Magento, Moodle, custom CMS, and WordPress CMS since 2004. Julie has taught adult education web development courses and sessions for community college and at various conferences. She dabbles in occasional freelance work and consulting opportunities.

Sylvia Falcon

  • Websites In World Mission Outreach - 2E-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 5E-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm

Sylvia Falcon has been working with Multi-Language Publications in El Paso, TX, since 2008.  Two years ago, she became the Coordinator for Digital Publications at MLP. 

Sylvia has a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Texas at El Paso, with emphasis in math and science.

She was born in the US, but raised in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, making her a bilingual speaker of Spanish and English.  Her military background in the US Air Force gave her the opportunity to travel the world and experience different cultures. 

Ms. Falcon is a member of Christ Our Redeemer Lutheran Church in El Paso, TX.

Rachel Feld

  • Using Google Apps in WELSSA - 4F-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 2F-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am
  • Using Technology in Christ Light - 2G-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 1F-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am

Rachel Feld is a 2006 graduate of MLC. She was assigned to Bethany in Kenosha, serving as 1st and 2nd grade teacher and organist. Her lifelong interest in computers has transferred to her classroom where her class uses iPads and a Promethean Board on a daily basis. She graduates in May with a MA in Education from Wisconsin Lutheran College with an emphasis in Instructional Technology.

Peter Frank

  • Increase Church Office Efficiency with Church360° Members - 1E-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 3C-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

Peter Frank serves as manager of Concordia Technology Solutions (CTS), the church management software division of Concordia Publishing. His ministry is making sure church workers have the digital tools they need to share the Gospel. A graduate of Concordia University Wisconsin, his background in theology, business, and computers gives him a unique perspective on technology in the church, and he has written several papers on that topic. He is married and the father of one son, and is frequently humbled when his 2-year-old shows him new things on the iPad.

Pastor Aaron Frey

  • Optimizing Logos 6 for Original Language Study - 2B-Thursday 1:15 pm to 5:00 pm
  • Exegetical Workflows with Logos - 5B-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 2A-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am
  • Renewing Greek and Hebrew with Logos - 2A-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 5A-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm

Aaron Frey has been a lover of Bible software since it first entered the market 30 years ago, and has been using Logos as his main study package since it was launched in the early 90's. He has taught software-based exegetical techniques at pastoral gatherings, technology conferences and at the seminary's winter quarter. He holds a part-time pastor call in Fenton, Michigan, while living with his wife and five children in Saginaw, where he works full-time as a financial planner.

Kurt Gosdeck

  • Google Classroom...Is It For You? - 1G-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 4F-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm
  • Panel Session: School Technology - 3E-Saturday 11:00 am to 11:50 am

Kurt Gosdeck served 14 years as the Director of Technology at St. Lucas Lutheran Church and School in Kewaskum, WI. While there he led the transformation of becoming the first one to one school in the county. St. Lucas became a Google Apps for Education (GAFE) school at the start of 2012-2013 school year and has been making use of Google ever since. Beginning next school year Kurt will start a new calling as 4th grade teacher and school technology director at St. Mark Lutheran in Green Bay, WI. He is a Google Educated Trainer, Educational Technology Consultant, and loves training schools to use Google Apps for Education throughout their curriculum. Kurt’s prayer is that you integrate technology into curriculum, but never forget that you are the most important person in the classroom.

Dr. James Grunwald

  • Using SMARTBoards and SMART Notebook Software to Enhance Teaching and Learning - 1B-Thursday 8:00 am to 11:45 am
  • Online Courses: Expanding Your Curriculum - 2F-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 4G-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm

Dr. Jim Grunwald has been helping to coordinate online education initiatives in the WELS since 1998, when he began serving as the Director of Academic Computing at MLC. He has been involved with ALHS Online since its earliest planning stages and currently serves as its superintendent, overseeing all aspects of its day-to-day operations.

A 1978 graduate of DMLC, Jim has over 35 years teaching experience in WELS elementary, high school, college, and graduate level education. He has presented at numerous conferences on technology related topics, has published several related articles, and has earned two master's degrees and a PhD in Computing Technology in Education.

Pastor Rob Guenther

  • Create a Simple Church Intranet with Free Google Tools - 5I-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 1J-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am

Rob Guenther has been a pastor for 10 years and has managed most of that time without a secretary. Since necessity is the mother of invention, he's found ways to streamline the administration processes that are necessary to keep a congregation organized and running smoothly. And his favorite tools are easily shared, accessible anywhere, password protected, easy to use, and almost always free. In short, he's a giant Google fan.

Rob lives with his wife, Becky, and their four boys (ages 2 to 11) in Kenai, Alaska, where he serves at Grace Lutheran Church. Rob also enjoys hunting and fishing, keeping up on the latest tech, and is an avid reader. He looks forward to attending his first WELSTech conference in July and to seeing you all there!

Missionary Michael Hartman

  • Using Mobile Technology to Proclaim the Gospel in the Homes of People in Latin America - 5D-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 2E-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am

Mike Hartman is a WELS missionary living in León, Mexico. Mike serves as coordinator for WELS mission work in Latin America.

John L Hoh Jr

  • Publish It Yourself with Print-On-Demand - 3D-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm, 2C-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am

John is a technical writer in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He lives with his son, Matthew, in North Prairie, WI. John has written numerous articles for newspapers and magazines, including a number of on-line magazines such as HOWS Magazine, ArenaFan, and Suite, and (Senior Editor). John also has written over two dozen books. These books include John's love for his faith, his interest in aviation history and the Underground Railroad, and select theological topics. Most of John's books are self-published using the POD method. John once studied for the public ministry and attended Lutheran seminaries for four years after graduating from Northwestern College in Watertown, Wisconsin.

Dan Jaspersen

  • One Smartphone Is All You Need - 1J-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 3I-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

Dan Jaspersen is the Director of Marketing Communication for Kingdom Workers. His previous experience includes marketing for a major corporation,  international relations in Japan and performing magic for US senators. His dad taught him to waterski at a young age and his wife taught him how to make spaghetti.

Dan is a graduate of MVL in New Ulm and earned his degree in Business Communication from Bethany Lutheran College. He is one of those few people who can claim that he is using his degree in that field. That's pretty neat.

Shelly Karstens

  • Bookmarking sites Which is the best one for you? - 4H-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 1H-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am

Shelly is the fourth grade teacher at Peace Lutheran School. Her students are 1:1 with chromebooks. Shelly has her Masters in instructional technology. She is also a Google certified individual. In her free time, she loves to quilt and cheer for the Blackhawks.

Katy Klinnert Ellison

  • Take Your Social Media Ministry to the Next Level! - 2J-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 4J-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm

As the Creative Marketing Manager for Time of Grace Ministry, Katy manages the ministry website, social media, graphic design, advertising, and marketing. She is a Marquette University graduate, and her social media expertise is featured in the book Unique: Telling Your Story in the Age of Brands and Social Media (Regal, 2012). Katy and her husband, John, and daughter, Maddie, live in the Milwaukee area, and she also serves as a worship musician at a local church. She loves to spend time with her family, cook, and travel.

Pastor Tom Kuster

  • GospelTech: Focusing Our Use of Technology on Gospel Outreach at Home and Around the World - 1F-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 3D-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

After several years as a pastor, Dr. Tom Kuster taught Speech and English at DMLC for 20 years, then taught Communication at Bethany Lutheran College and Seminary for another 20. Five years ago he founded the Christ in Media Institute, based at Bethany, which he still directs. In addition to numerous lesser projects, the Institute hosted 140 attendees at the Media Outreach in World Missions Conference in 2012, and engaged students from seven schools and mission workers in eight nations in the Christian Mobile Phone Project in 2013-14.

Greg Letiecq

  • Capturing Great Video Imagery - 5C-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 4C-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm

Greg Letiecq is the owner of NOVA Digital Films in Manassas, Virginia and the technology ministry leader at Bethlehem Evangelical Lutheran Church.  Greg designed and implemented the technology integration for Bethlehem's building expansion that now provides video signals throughout the new and previously existing facilities.

NOVA Digital provides corporate cinematography and photography services to businesses, non-profits and causes in the Washington DC metropolitan area as well as supporting feature film productions with production crews and post-production services.

James Mahnke

  • PC Updates Made Easy - 4G-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 3G-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm
  • Panel Session: System Administration - 2H-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am

James Mahnke has been a Technology Director for 21 years, the last 18 at Luther High School in Onalaska, WI. His day job includes Technology Director, Registrar, Activities Planner, Assistant Principal and Instructor. He teaches Computer Applications which includes programming, web design, 3D modeling, Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign. He also teaches Robotics and coaches a competition robotics team after school. For fun he helps run an annual Midwest technology conference that hosts over 1000 people. James’ family includes his wife Dorann and two children Benjamin (16) and Grace (7).

Bob Martens

  • Panel Session: System Administration - 2H-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am

Bob Martens serves at Martin Luther College as the System and Network Administrator for the both the online and offline campus. In that capacity he helps maintain, monitor, install, and plan all major of server and network projects to enable the ministry of MLC. You can read up on what he is doing at his website,

Bob has been a member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in New Ulm, MN since he was born and serves in many capacities on various boards and committees pertaining to technology, outreach, and worship. You’ll often see him using his gifts while playing the violin and leading worship as part of one of the contemporary service groups.

Carl Nolte

  • HymnSoft Player 3.0.1 for Worship - 3I-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm, 5I-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm

Carl is the Sacred Music and Worship Editor at Northwestern Publishing House and represents the synod’s publisher as an advisory member of the Commission on Worship. For many years Carl was a regular member of the Commission as well as of the Joint Hymnal Committee, serving both as secretary. He chaired the Commission’s subcommittee for the production of the songbook, Let All the People Praise You. He was the editor for the music curriculum, Sing and Make Music. He holds the Master of Church Music degree from Concordia University, River Forest, IL. Prior to his work at NPH, Carl was a teacher at St. Andrew, Chicago, Bloomington, Bloomington, MN, and First German, Manitowoc, WI.

Garth Perry

  • A Handyman's Toolbox for IT Systems Administration - 1H-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 5H-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm

Garth Perry graduated in 2003 with a degree in Staff Ministry from Martin Luther College. With few Staff Ministry calls available, Garth searched for other career paths which led to a career in the IT universe. Garth has served in various IT roles including technical support, systems administrator, IT service desk, and eventually a Network Administrator role at a community bank in Wisconsin Rapids, WI. The Network Administrator role is just a title for an IT guy that is a jack of all trades in an IT department of two. Garth graduated from the University of Wisconsin - Stout in 2011 with a degree in Information and Communication Technology. Garth serves as the Technology Coordinator at St. Paul's Church and School in Wisconsin Rapids. Garth lives in Wisconsin Rapids with his jack of all trades musical wife Kristi (nee Brown) and daughter Brianna.

Rachel J Pierson

  • Extending Student Writing through Blogging - 4E-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 5F-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm
  • Panel Session: School Technology - 3E-Saturday 11:00 am to 11:50 am

Rachel Pierson is a technology nerd with a teaching and learning habit. She loves finding new ways to add to her instructional technology toolbox, and has a passion for teaching other teachers how to use these tools to their advantage. If your social media Personal Learning Community needs more members, you can visit her on Twitter (@aleixa), Google+ (+Rachel Pierson) or Pinterest (

Tom Plamann

  • Technology in worship music. - 5H-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 2I-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am

After three decades working in the home building business, I was ready for a change and decided to move toward a career in which I could use my gifts to serve the Lord. Since then, I have devoted my time and talents toward exploring technology use in the church.  I am absolutely blessed to be a part of the worship team at the CORE in Appleton, WI, as the Technology and Creative Arts Coordinator.  I enjoy still and motion graphics, video production and, most of all, music.  My passion for technology keeps me striving for new ways to enhance worship and effectively feed souls.  I live in Greenville, WI, with my wife of 38 years, Pam, and we continue to appreciate the Lord’s daily blessings.

Ben Polzin

  • Video Communication in our Churches & Schools - 4B-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 1B-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am
  • Panel Session: System Administration - 2H-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am

Ben Polzin is a member at Christ Lutheran in Hugo, MN. Ben led the technology planning for their new church and early learning center, the second campus for Christ Lutheran where video conferencing is used as another means of unifying the two campuses.

Ben is a Technical Lead and consulting engineer at CDW designing and deploying collaboration solutions for his customers who range from small businesses to Fortune 100 companies. His experience ranges across corporate video conferencing, long distance education and telemedicine solutions using Cisco TelePresence & WebEx, Microsoft Lync & Skype, Google Hangouts, Blue Jeans Network, Pexip and more.

Mark Robinson

  • Building A Stress Free Yet Cost Effective Network - 3H-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm
Mark Robinson is the president of DVI Consulting, a technology integration and consulting company servicing organizations in the religious, education, nonprofit, and business markets. In addition to leading DVI since 2003, Mark is responsible for developing the company’s religious and education programs. His work with the WELS Synod includes the WELS Telecom Offer, ShopWELS Group Purchasing Program, and numerous contract negotiations which have saved WELS locations over $1,000,000 combined. To date, Mark has worked personally with over 150 individual WELS churches and schools. Mark is a strong advocate within the WELS for technologies that fuel engagement, deepens understanding, and can excite members and the community alike. Mark has over 20 years of industry experience including carrier services, low voltage cabling, data networking, phone systems, security, video conferencing, servers, consulting, and more. Prior to DVI, Mark was a national sales director for Universal Access, Inc.

Jonathan Ruddat

  • Sermon Video Bumps - 2B-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 5B-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm
  • Panel Session: Church Technology - 3A-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm

Jon Ruddat is the owner of Accomplishing Success LLC. For 15 years he was on staff at various church across the country and found that most individuals, non-profits, and small businesses typically struggle with utilizing computers, websites, and video to effectively communicate their message. Over the years, he has discovered the keys to having smooth running computers, a great looking website, and creating engaging video clips. These keys increase productivity, draw visitors, and set the stage for sharing the Gospel. He looks forward to chatting with you at the conference.

Jason Schmidt

  • Google Apps 101 - 1C-Thursday 8:00 am to 11:45 am
  • Google Apps 201 - 2C - Thursday 1:15 pm to 5:00 pm
  • Flipped Classroom on a Budget - 5G-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm
  • Tablet Shoot-Out - Part 1 - 2G-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am
  • Tablet Shoot-Out - Part 2 - 3F-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

Jason Schmidt is a Google Education Trainer currently working as the Instructional Technologist for Bennington Public Schools in Bennington, Nebraska. In this role, he supports technology use and integration in K-12 classrooms and leads many different professional development opportunities throughout the year. He is a regular contributor to the WELSTech Podcast, and also presents at conferences throughout the Midwest on the use of technology and the web in classrooms and for personal productivity. In addition, Jason is a member of the adjunct graduate faculty at Martin Luther College where he teaches courses on the use and administration of Google Apps, emerging technologies, and the use of technology in early childhood and special education.

Dan Schoeffel

  • Conquering Pornography with Technology - 5A-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 4A-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm
  • Panel Session: Church Technology - 3A-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm

Dan Schoeffel is Staff Minister at St. Paul's Lutheran Church and School in Onalaska, WI. Dan is on a Synod Special Ministries subcommittee called Conquerors through Christ which was formed to help people who are tempted by or caught in pornography's stranglehold. Dan understands the powerful affect and impact porn has on people and he has a passion to help people conquer this powerful temptation.

James Sehloff

  • How private is your data? - 3H-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm, 1G-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am
  • Panel Session: System Administration - 2H-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am

I have a B.S. in Biology from UWBG.  I started working in healthcare in 1973 as a medical technologist.  I got an MS in computer medicine from Texas Tech University in 1984.  I have worked at a variety of hospitals since 1973, but have been at Holy Family Memorial in Manitowoc since 1988.  I implemented their laboratory information system in 1990 and moved to their information systems department several years later.  One day my boss called me into his office and said I was security officer in addition to the other things that I did.  Since then I have done many presentations to groups like the Meditech user group and HIPAA-COW on information security.

Andrea Semmann

  • Video-assisted Counseling - 1B-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 3A-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

Andrea Semmann joined WLCFS in 2014. She received her BBA from Wisconsin Lutheran College and her MBA in Healthcare from Cardinal Stritch University, where she completed her graduate research in the area of telehealth service delivery. Andrea is a Certified Telehealth Coordinator. Prior to joining WLCFS, she worked in the areas of social service and mental health, specializing in program management, insurance reimbursement, and areas of compliance.

Andrea is currently the Operations Manager and Telehealth Coordinator for WLCFS Christian Family Counseling. Her focus is to allow Christian Family Counseling’s professional staff to connect with individuals, whether face to face or through using video conferencing (telehealth), in order to increase the access for those seeking Christian counseling.

Andrea is married with three adult sons and attends Our Savior Lutheran Church in Grafton, WI.

Brian Shaffer

  • Web Do's and Don'ts plus Upcoming Finalweb Projects - 4J-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 5J-Saturday 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm

Brian Shaffer is a software engineer at Finalweb Corporation and one of the founding members.  He has twenty years of experience in programming and network administration in a variety of environments.  Brian lives in California with his wife and two children.

Martin Spriggs

  • Getting Your Inbox to ZERO...And Keeping It There! - 1A-Thursday 8:00 am to 11:45 am
  • Prospect Management...Exploring The Possibilities - 4E-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm
  • Just Where Are Those Intersections Again? - Keynote-Saturday 8:30 am to 9:00 am

Martin Spriggs has been serving as the WELS Chief Technology Officer since October 2004. In his capacity as CTO, Martin speaks at numerous workshops and conferences on varied technology topics including building evangelistic websites, promoting your church and school, digital Bible Study, creating the efficient church office and effective time management through technology. He is more than eager to serve the membership of our synod and help our churches and schools make effective use of technology to aid in their ministries.

A former WELS pastor, Martin earned his MBA from Keller Graduate School of Management, Chicago. He built the Midwest practice for Net Quotient Consulting Group (a firm that provides Internet application development for Fortune 1000 companies) and Qwest Communications (a telecommunications firm), as well as worked on technical development and internet consulting at these companies. A member of Peace Lutheran, Hartford, WI, he and his wife Debbie live in Slinger, WI.

Brandon Steenbock

  • Reaching Teens Through Multi-Media - 1A-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 2B-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am

Brandon Steenbock has served as Staff Minister of Family and Youth at St. Paul's in New Ulm for nine years. He works with teens and also manages the technology needs of the congregation. Some days he spends more time on Facebook than he ought, but this only make him more aware of the kinds of things that being viewed and shared by our teens today. While he is no expert on producing multi-media content, he is passionate about learning how to better reach teens with the Gospel.

Dan Stelljes

  • Making Better Websites - 3J-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm, 2J-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am

Dan Stelljes is a freelance developer currently working on a CS degree at the University of Minnesota, Morris. Over the past few years, he's worked for clients worldwide on personal blogs, enterprise CRM software, single-page applications, and (as one might expect) websites for churches and schools. In his spare time, he runs, reads, and plays piano.

Dave Tess

  • Technology, Relationships, Faith - Keynote-Friday 8:20 am to 9:20 am
  • Technology & Your Brain (Keynote Discussion) - 1D-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am
  • Code On! - 5E-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm
  • Tablet Shoot-Out - Part 1 - 2G-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am
  • Tablet Shoot-Out - Part 2 - 3F-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

David Tess serves at Wisconsin Lutheran College as the Director of Digital Education. Before beginning at WLC in 2012, he taught for seven years at St. Lucas in Milwaukee, WI. He also currently teaches numerous technology education courses, during which he assists educators in proper use of tech tools in the classroom. He is married, is the father of three young boys, and he’s fascinated by how technology is shaping the world in which his sons live. David discussed his sessions on WELSTech 378.

Julia Wagenknecht

  • Online Project Management for Ministry - 1I-Friday 9:30 am to 10:20 am, 3H-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

Julia grew up in Campbellsport, Wis. and graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point, Wis. in Communications. She has served WELS world missions for 14 years in various roles and locations including Japan, Malawi, and the Dominican Republic. Julia is married to Missionary Nathan Wagenknecht and lives in Houston, Texas.

Missionary Nathan Wagenknecht

  • Creating Christian Community - From a Distance - 4D-Friday 1:30 pm to 2:20 pm, 1D-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am

Nathan Wagenknecht serves as a missionary on the Latin America mission team. He has worked with national churches in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Mexico, and Puerto Rico in their seminary programs since 2000. He is currently involved with the Academia Cristo project to help Christians share the gospel in Spanish, both north and south of the border.

Nathan and his wife Julia live in Houston, Texas.

Ian Welch

  • Church Branding & Technology - 3C-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm, 4D-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm

Ian Welch is a designer and composer of liturgical media living in Chula Vista, California. After graduating Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in 2010, he decided to continue his education at San Diego State University to attain a Master of Music degree with emphasis on music composition. Ian has several years of experience in visual church communication and various areas of technology that include website design, social networking, app integrations, and audio and video production. He currently runs a liturgical media company ( that focuses on producing Christian graphics, and also produces church branding solutions for churches and schools that include logos, websites, music, print and digital graphics (

Philip Wels

  • Podcasting - Tech, Setup, & Distirbution - 5G-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 2H-Saturday 10:10 am to 11:00 am

Philip Wels is the Studio Production Specialist at Bethany Lutheran College in Mankato, MN. He's been a fan of podcasts ever since they came out in 2005 and currently helps host two different weekly shows. At work he helps students with video production projects and trains them in on the equipment and technology used in the studio.

Matt Weseloh

  • Worship Planning in a Mobile World - 3B-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm, 4B-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm

Matt Weseloh is a member and worship leader at Holy Word Lutheran Church in Pflugerville, TX.  He is also an internet and database developer at Hewlett-Packard.

Pastor James Wilcox

  • Smart Computer Security for Church, School and Life - 5F-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, 4H-Saturday 1:10 pm to 2:00 pm

James Wilcox is a 2003 graduate of Martin Luther College and a 2007 graduate of Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary. He has served both small and large congregations and currently serves as one of two pastors at Good Shepherd's in West Allis, WI.

He is a self-described computer geek with a special interest in making computer security a part of his daily routine. By studying the security practices of computer security researches Brian Krebs (Krebsonsecurity. com) and Steve Gibson (, James has found numerous tools that lower your security risk and make practicing good security habits easy for ministry and for your life.

Andrew Willems

  • Technology Planning for Schools- - 3G-Friday 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm, 1E-Saturday 9:10 am to 10:00 am
  • Panel Session: School Technology - 3E-Saturday 11:00 am to 11:50 am

Andrew Willems is a 1989 graduate of (D)MLC. He was assigned to Trinity-St. Luke's Lutheran school in Watertown, WI and taught there for 23 years. He was named Director of Technology in 1998 and took some classes. Most of his learning is in the "school of hard knocks".  In 2006 he received a MS in Education with an emphasis in Integrating Technology in the Curriculum from Walden University.

Since 2013 Andrew has taught  at Shoreland Lutheran High School while being the Director of Technology. He has also initiated Shoreland's STEM Academy and helped move the students to use a Chromebooks at school every day.

Andrew has been married to Heidi for 25 years and they have 5 children ranging from age 14-22.  The family belongs to Epiphany in Racine. Heidi currently works at Elliott Optical in Racine. In his spare time Andrew loves to read educational & leadership books, travel, golf, and landscape.

Barb Winget

  • Streaming Without a Canoe (Basic) - 5J-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm, -Saturday
  • Streaming Without a Canoe (Intermediate) - -Friday , 3J-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00pm

Barb Winget is a member of the A/V team as a live audio operator and also coordinates complex audio settings during special services for Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church, River Falls, WI.

Jason Winget

  • Streaming Without a Canoe (Basic) - 5J-Friday 3:00 pm to 3:50 pm
  • Streaming Without a Canoe (Intermediate) - 3J-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

Jason Winget is the Technical Coordinator for Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church, River Falls, WI. Jason has move than two decades of experience in television and radio production, network technology manager by day and is a self proclaimed, as well as is confirmed by wife Barb and daughter Allie, gadget guru. As an Evangelism Board member for six years, interest in how to expand the website and the use of other media blossomed from a oneman show to a A/V team of dozen nontechnical congregation members.

Steven F. Zambo

  • Becoming a Visual StoryTeller - 2C-Friday 10:30 am to 11:20 am, 3B-Saturday 11:10 am to 12:00 pm

Steven Zambo is the President of Salty Earth Pictures a non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging, producing, and distributing entertainment and media that challenges minds, lightens hearts, and strengthens souls.  Salty Earth has produced three feature films that are currently is distribution.  In 2015 they will release their fourth movie titled "The Return."  Salty Earth Pictures' has a 30,000 sq. ft. studio in Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin.  It offers tours to church and school groups interested in learning how to use media to share the hope that we have. Salty Earth Pictures provides video serves for WELS Christian Aid and Relief and other church related organizations.  He is also a Professor of Digital Cinema and Media at Wisconsin Lutheran College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  WLC offers both a major and a minor in digital cinema and media. Steve formerly served as Media Director for the WELS and as Director of Private Sector Initiatives for President George H. W. Bush.  He has received sixteen Telly Awards for his work in media, video, and entertainment. Currently through both Salty Earth Pictures and WLC, Steve is working on producing a visual form of the Bible Teaching Series for Multi-Language Publications.