Development Staff

Gift Amount
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Jim Jermier

Vice President for Development

Jim oversees all aspects of development and alumni relations, focusing on building relationships with Luther's constituencies. Jim invites gifts from alumni, parents, and friends of Luther and also assists donors with estate and gift planning. An officer of the college, Jim serves on the President's Cabinet.

Daina Bond

Donor Records Coordinator

Sue J. Drilling

Director of Stewardship and Special Events

Sue administers the college’s President's Council donor recognition program, along with other special event and donor stewardship activities. Partnering with campus departments, she works to steward donors and encourage continued gift support. Sue also coordinates Family Weekend each year.

Nate Ersig

Director of Development

Nathan manages the major gift, principal gift, and legacy/gift planning efforts of the development office. He travels nationwide to build relationships and invite gifts from alumni, parents, and friends of the college. Together with Jeanie Lovell, Nathan serves as co-director of campaigns.

Chris Frana

Director of Development Research

Chris directs development resources research and works to maintain accuracy in Luther’s donor records system. A trained attorney, she focuses especially on donor privacy and rights.

Mark Franzen

Head Men's Basketball Coach

Mark manages the efforts of the recently established Norse Athletic Association, raising funds in support of men's and women's athletics. He coordinates mailings, invitations for support, newsletters, and special events related to the NAA. In addition to his part-time development responsibilities, Mark serves as head men's basketball coach.

Alex Jackson

Administrative Assistant, Development

Alex serves as the administrative assistant to the vice president and handles all related duties for that position, including scheduling, correspondence, and college business. She also provides student worker supervision and coordinates the receipting communication process and supports communications with the President’s Council, and for donor recognition events through the Development Office.

Annette Laitinen

Administrative Assistant, Annual Giving

Jeff Leschensky

Development Officer

Jeff travels in Iowa, Minnesota, Illinois, Arizona, and New Mexico to build relationships and invite gifts from alumni, parents, and friends of the College.

Jeanie Lovell

Dir. of Corp. and Foundation Relations and Campaign Co-Dir.

Jeanie oversees all aspects of corporate and foundation support for Luther and works with faculty and staff to secure research funding and support for teaching and learning. She also leads Women, Faith, and Finance, Luther’s collaborative women’s philanthropy initiative. Together with Nathan Ersig, Jeanie serves as co-director of campaigns. 

Paul Mullen

Development Officer

Paul travels in Eastern Iowa, Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, and California to build relationships and invite gifts from alumni, parents, and friends of the College.

Doug R. Nelson

Senior Development Officer

Doug travels throughout the greater Midwest, as well as Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Missouri, Oregon, and Texas, to build relationships and invite gifts from alumni, parents, and friends of the College. Doug also coordinates Luther's endowed scholarship program, The Legacy Trust.

James Odegaard

Student Engagement Coordinator, Development

Andrew Peter

Development Officer

Andrew travels in Minneapolis/St.Paul, Northern Minnesota, Des Moines, the Mid-Atlantic and New England to build relationships and invite gifts from alumni, parents, and friends of the College.

Mariah Smith

Director of Development-Current Gifts

Maria coordinates all components of the annual giving program, along with her staff colleagues, student, alumni, and parent volunteers. She also oversees the reunion giving program and works directly with the Golden Anniversary reunion each year. A member of the Decorah Chorale Board of Directors, Maria previously served as Luther's representative to the Decorah Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and is a past president of ArtHaus in Decorah. Maria graduated from Luther in 1995 with a degree in music (with a music management certificate) and she and her husband, Steve (also a Luther graduate), have two children.

Kelly Sorenson

Legacy and Gift Planning Administrator

Kelly leads and manages the planned giving program and Luther's planned giving society, the Heritage Club. She works alongside the development team in building relationships and securing philanthropic support through bequest intentions, charitable gift annuities, trusts, and other gift planning vehicles from alumni, parents, and friends of the College.

Megan Torkelson

Assistant Director of Annual Giving

Megan oversees the 10th and 25th reunion efforts. She manages the programming, works collaboratively with class volunteer leaders, and spearheads the reunion giving campaigns. Megan is also the "gnome-in-chief" for Luther’s annual Giving Day, bringing together faculty, staff, alumni, and friends for one big day of giving. She serves as president of the ArtHaus board of directors in Decorah and sings with the Decorah Chorale. Megan graduated from Luther in 2005 and also has a Masters in Arts and Cultural Management from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota. She and her husband Ryan (also a Luther graduate) have two boys.

Rachel Vsetecka

Director of Reunion Giving

Rachel oversees the 35th and 40th reunion efforts. She manages the programming, works collaboratively with class volunteer leaders, and spearheads the reunion giving campaigns. Rachel volunteers in her community and serves as the Treasurer of the Regional Health Services of Howard County Foundation Board and is a past president of the Howard County Childcare Association Board. Rachel graduated from Luther in 2009 with a degree in management and she and her husband, Rod, have two children.

 

Nicole Waskow

Donor Records Coordinator

Nicole is responsible for the computer entry of pledges/gifts and receipting of gifts, and she coordinates corporate and matching gifts. She interacts with the Financial Services and Financial Aid offices as well as the Library and Information Services application development team.