FVL is excited to welcome several new faculty and staff members for the 2020-21 school year! We wanted to take this opportunity to introduce you to some of the new names and faces you'll be seeing around campus this year.
Jay Wendland - Director of Mission Advancement
Mr. Jay Wendland is serving as FVL's Director of Mission Advancement! He is also the head coach of the varsity boys basketball team.
Prior to coming to FVL, Jay served as principal and teacher at Immanuel Lutheran School in Salem, OR, and as Middle School Principal (2011-17) and Director of Mission Advancement (2017-20) at St. Croix Lutheran Academy. He also coached basketball at St. Croix from 2011-20.
Jay and his wife Heidi have three children: Stella (14), Carys (13), and Micah (10).
Hometown: Appleton, WI, there he attended FVL until he moved to New Ulm, MN after his sophomore year
"Having grown up in the area, FVL has always been near and dear to me," Jay said.
Favorite Bible Passage: Psalm 46:10 "He says, 'Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.'"
Talents, Interests, Passions: basketball, camping, hiking, and visiting state and national parks
Mrs. Rachel Lemke - Special Education teacher
Mrs. Rachel Lemke is serving as a Special Education teacher at FVL! This position was made possible by additional funding FVL will receive through participation in the Special Needs Scholarship Program (SNSP).
"The Holy Spirit definitely did his work in the call," Rachel said. "I have always had a passion for tutoring, working one-on-one with students, and working with small groups. My clinical experience was actually a similar position, which was somewhat unusual for an Elementary Ed major, but I ended up loving the experience, so I'm really looking forward to my new position at FVL!"
Prior to coming to FVL, Rachel was a tutor at Luther Preparatory School for two years (2016-18). From there, she was assigned to St. John's in Montello, WI where she taught grades 5-8 (2018-19), grades 3-5 (2019-20) and served as athletic director (2018-20).
Rachel was married to Ryan Lemke (FVL biology and chemistry teacher) this summer!
Hometown: Morton Grove, IL
Favorite Bible Passage: Philippians 4:4-7 "Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." - This was Rachel's confirmation verse.
Talents, Interests, Passions: "I absolutely love soccer. I also enjoy reading, photography, playing the piano, and, saving the best for last, the Jacksonville Jaguars."
Miss Gabrielle Steidl - Spanish & English teacher
Miss Gabrielle Steidl is serving as FVL’s newest Spanish and English teacher! She is also assisting with the theatre department. Gabrielle graduated from Martin Luther College this past spring with a K-12 license in Spanish instruction. She also did three study abroad summers to strengthen her language skills and accelerate the completion of her degree.
"I love languages, and I am so excited to serve as an English and Spanish teacher!” Gabrielle said.
Hometown: New Berlin, WI
Favorite Bible Passage: Mark 16:15 “He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.’”
Favorite memory from MLC: “Teaching at Cruz de Cristo in Mahahual, Mexico”
Talents, Interests, Passions: "I love traveling, mission trips, hiking, shopping, spending time with my family, and anything theater!”
Mrs. Elisabeth Wagner - FVL Schools Band Director
Mrs. Elisabeth Wagner is serving as the FVL Schools Band Director!
"Now that my kids are all starting school, I can shift from full-time mom to mom/teacher," Elisabeth said. "Music is an important part of my life, and I'm excited to have the opportunity to work within the program that gave me a great foundation when I was younger."
Prior to coming to FVL, Elisabeth served as band director at Arizona Lutheran Academy (2002-04) and as grade school band director at Wisconsin Lutheran High School (2004-05). She also taught grades 7-8 part-time at St. Paul Lutheran School in Columbus, OH (2018-19) before she moved to Appleton.
Elisabeth and husband, Tim (pastor at Riverview Lutheran Church in Appleton) have five children: Micaiah (14), Sarah (13), Anna (10), Silas (6), and Lydia (4).
Hometown: "My dad was a WELS teacher, so we moved all over. I spent the longest time in Neenah, so that's probably what I'd consider my hometown."
Talents, Interests, Passions: "I love to bake. I also like to grill and smoke BBQ. I do a bit of gardening, and I also love to read."
Favorite Bible Passage: Romans 5:1-5 "Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us."
Mr. Mark Dobberstein - Grounds Supervisor
Mr. Mark Dobberstein now serves as FVL’s Grounds Supervisor! Mark is a 1996 FVL graduate, and he is a current member of Emanuel Lutheran in New London. Mark also works as a farmer raising steers.
Mark and wife, Michelle, have five sons: Jebediah (FVL class of ’20), Cavan (16), Carson (13), Jacoby (11), and Cutter (9).
Hometown: Manawa, WI
Favorite Bible Passage: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6
Talents, Interests, Passions: "I love watching and coaching our boys in their different sporting events: football, basketball, baseball, and track. I also enjoy hunting and outdoor activities like camping.”