Beth Wagner

Team Leader

I have just started my seventh transitional/interim position as Head of Staff/Lead Pastor at Yorkfield Presbyterian Church in Elmhurst, IL. Transitional work makes life interesting, it means a new location and new challenges every two years or so, and that is exciting for me and my family. I believe that at this time every church is in transition, my time with churches is just more defined as I fill in the in-between time of pastors. I have an umbrella and suitcase that sit in the chancel area of the different churches I serve as a reminder that we are all placed in particular places for a time, and eventually the winds will change and God will call us to another location. I am also blessed to serve the larger PC(USA) church by being team lead and facility for The Art of Transitional Ministry.  Free time for Sir Dusty the cat, Honey Bear Cat and me often includes hanging out with a family that loves to camp included an adorable grandson and precious granddaughter or perhaps crafting (sewing, knitting and other fun creative things) or reading; everything from business books to mysteries to rhyming children’s books.

James Gale

Faculty

Is a graduate of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Columbia Theological Seminary. He served churches in North Carolina and Kansas before transitioning to his current position as Associate Executive of the Synod of Mid-America. James has completed Interim Ministry Training through Union Theological Seminary and most recently completed McCormick Theological Seminary's Certificate in Executive Leadership. He and his wife are the parents of two girls and all four are proud TarHeels.

SanDawna Ashley

Faculty

Is the Executive Director of Presbytery Mission for the Minnesota Valleys Presbytery.  She has served as Assistant Stated Clerk, Manager for Call Process Support and Teaching Elders Ministries in the Office of the General Assembly. In her work, she provided training, consultation, coaching, and resources for presbyteries in support of congregations, COMs, call seekers and calling organizations. Her pastoral service includes serving as senior pastor and solo pastor of congregations in Pennsylvania, Delaware and Illinois. SanDawna holds degrees from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, Doctor of Ministry (DMIN) with a concentration in leadership development and congregational transformation, Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary Masters of Divinity in   the Psychology of Religion and Pastoral Care (MDIV) and Georgia State University Bachelor of Social Work (BSW). She is married to Murphy Ashley, Jr., the mother of Jay, mother-in-law of Rachel and grandmother of Christian and Olivia. Our family is completed by our 4-year-old Keeshond Joy.

Laura Sherwood

Faculty

Rev. Laura Sherwood received her M.Div. from McCormick Theological Seminary in 1998 and has been working in Interim and Transitional Ministry since her ordination in 2000, serving 6 churches in Ohio and Indiana in both Associate and Pastor/Head of Staff positions. Laura has worked with churches with various transitional needs including conflict mediation and size transition (from program to corporate and program to pastor). She has also worked in contract/consultant work with her current Presbytery, Whitewater Valley - Indiana, for Transforming Congregations and MissionInsite Demographics. Laura lived in the former Soviet Union and loves to speak Russian whenever there is an opportunity, has a passion for humane treatment of animals in farming, and is fan of forensic murder mysteries.

Tassie Green

Faculty

Rev. Dr. Tassie Green is currently Parish Associate at First Pres Deerfield, IL. Tassie and her husband Ken, who is a church consultant for the Board of Pensions, are a clergy couple who live in Palatine, IL and are raising 2 young adults. Tassie recently completed 17 months as Interim Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Downers Grove, IL and served previously as Interim Pastor for Youth in Narberth, PA and as Interim Pastor for Families in Hinsdale, IL. She worked for the Presbytery of Chicago as a trainer and coach for the “Pro-active Transformation Project,"  at Second Pres Indy as Associate Pastor, and at World Vision before that. Tassie's mission statement is, “I want to help make Jesus real in people's lives, beginning with our own family.”

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