2023 COUNCIL

Deb Oakland - COUNCIL PRESIDENT

My husband Dan and I moved to Stoughton in November of 1979 and have   been members of Covenant Lutheran Church since 1980.  We have two children that attended Sunday School  and were confirmed at Covenant. We also have two grandchildren.  I served on church council about 20 years ago and have been  a part of several committees throughout our time at Covenant. I enjoyed being part of the bell choir for several years  and Dan and I really enjoyed serving communion to homebound members prior  to the Covid 19 pandemic. I am currently one of the counters, help with  communion setup, am an assistant minster and reader for worship services. We have seen many changes at Covenant throughout the years  and I expect we will continue to see changes.  Change is inevitable but great news: Jesus is the same yesterday and today  and forever (Hebrews 13:8). I look forward to serving  on the church council again.

Jessica Diebold - Council Vice President

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I am a longtime and faithful member of Covenant. I am currently a Junior at Marquette University with majors in Law Studies and English. I will be applying to law school this upcoming fall. For many years I have taught Sunday School, organized VBS, attended mission trips and fellowship trips around the world, and served as an Assistant Minister. Some of my favorite memories with Covenant are laughs I shared in Puerto Rico with Ascensión members, assisting Pastor Mark Peterson on Christmas Eve, and sharing a sermon after the South Dakota – Pine Ridge mission trip. I am involved in the Marquette Lutheran Campus Ministry, with leadership as a Peer Minister, amongst many other activities, jobs, and internships. I am happy to be the college / law student voice on the Council!

Bill Cook - COUNCIL SECRETARY

 Hi I’m Bill Cook
This is my first term on council, I’ve been a Covenant member since 1994 along with my wife Karen Hanson when we moved to the Stoughton area. I’ve been retired since 2018, having worked in the printing field for over 40 years, mostly at a supervisory position. I also co-owned a business for 3 years in the Stoughton community. I enjoy watching all sports, especially football. Hobbies include golfing, fishing, and making stained glass artworks. I also enjoy walking our dog Peeta or (I should say he likes walking me)….where I can meditate and enjoy the beautiful nature God has blessed us with!

THOR ANDERSON - COUNCIL MEMBER

I was born in Black River Falls, WI. My wife Beth and our family joined Covenant in late 1997 or 1998. At the time we were drawn by the Saturday night service and Pastor Mark Winkler and the music that was played. I have been involved as a Sunday School teacher for approximately 10 years; I’m currently an usher, part of the Covid Team and have been a part of several call teams. Beth and I lived in Iowa, California and North Carolina before deciding to move back to Wisconsin to raise or family. My kids tell me my hidden talent is my whistling and humming. Something most people don’t know about me is that I worked for the Minnesota Vikings one summer. If elected, I look forward to hopefully bringing some new ideas and thoughts to our council, congregation and church family that contributes to Covenant being a fun, vibrant environment, that gets people excited and will make it easy for others to want to join Covenant and be involved to help us grow and flourish.

Penny Vodak - Council Member

Hello,
My name is Penny Vodak. My husband, Greg and I joined Covenant several years ago after we married in 1987. I taught math and social studies at the middle school for 35 years, enjoying a long and healthy retirement, watching our two daughters’ families including two grandsons in high school and college, who have given us years of love and happiness. In addition, we are the happy owner of Poppy, our 2-year-old Chug, a gift from our Tucson Family. I could write a book about her first two years with us. I love nature, where we are lucky to have the Yahara River, woods and corn fields visible from the breakfast table. Hiking, history, reading, gardening, traveling, writing and decorating are my favorite hobbies. In over thirty years at Covenant I’ve particularly enjoyed the landscape committee, helping a task force create the Gateway, and being part of the church book club. I have been on church Council, and a Call Committee before and love getting to know so many people at Covenant over the years.

Christy Unzicker - Council Member

Christy was born in Gibson City, IL. She happened upon Covenant by mistake, intending to be at a different church. She liked it so much she has been a member ever since! For the past six years Christy has been an active part of Covenant. Involved in Sunday School, Host-a-Tree, Fellowship, Communion set up, Altar Guild and previously served on Church Council. Her hidden talents and hobbies include knitting, crocheting and being quite the angler; Enjoying both fresh and salt water fishing! Christy looks forward to learning more about how the church works, so she may put her efforts to best use in helping Covenant today and into the future!

Donna Tarpinian - Treasurer

My husband, Gary, and I joined Covenant in 2012 and I took on the Treasurer role in July 2021. I serve on the Worship & Music Committee and the Soial Action Team and I help out with A/V projects. I also sing in the Senior Choir and play as a substitute ringer in the Bell Choir. Gary and I have two adult children: Matthew, who lives in Stockholm, Sweden; and Kelsey, who lives in Madison. During the day, I work as an Office Manager for a humanitarian training firm in Madison called InterWorks.