Meet the Staff
Our role as staff is to cultivate religious and spiritual life at Pacific in all its many forms. We are here to serve the needs of all students, no matter what your religious tradition or even if you don't consider yourself religious or spiritual at all. While we make no claim to have all of life's answers, we can probably point you in the right direction, provide resources for you, and work with you through the questions that will inevitably arise as you grow through university. We can also help you find people or groups who share your interests. Our hope is that in doing so you will find a level of fulfillment, understanding, and perhaps meet other people who you can journey with in the questions of life.
Drop by our offices in Sears Hall, connected to Morris Chapel, to meet us. If you haven't yet been in our buildings or met us, rest assured that we are a friendly, welcoming group of caring people, and we're not here to convert you or pressure you into anything. We're here to serve you and hopefully help inspire you to live a meaningful life--whoever you are and whatever your path.
- Joel N. Lohr
Joel N. Lohr is the Dean of Religious Life, an award winning author and scholar of religion. He is originally from Canada, and grew up near the shores of Lake Erie in a diverse Dutch immigrant family (he has three siblings from Laos, two siblings from Bangladesh, three step-siblings, and one biological brother). He is a proud first generation college graduate with a BA in Religious Studies (Trinity Western University, Canada) and he went on to earn an MA and PhD in Religion and Theology (University of Durham, England). Prior to his appointment at Pacific he completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Toronto, where he then served as a Visiting Scholar. His research focuses on Jewish-Christian Dialogue, the Bible, and the Abrahamic Traditions more generally. He is the author or editor of a number of books (see below), most recently an edited collection of senior biblical scholars' short autobiographies. As the Dean of Religious Life, Joel is passionate about religious diversity, dialogue, and interreligious relations. He is also deeply committed to whole person development, particularly as part of higher education. He is married to Teresa, an occupational therapist, and they have one daughter. As a proud one-car family, they live close to campus from where Joel walks or bikes to work each day.
For more information on Dr. Lohr, see his CV and books.
- Laura Steed
Laura Steed is the Assistant Multifaith Chaplain at Pacific. She is a Licensed Local Pastor in the United Methodist Church and is pursuing ordination as a United Methodist Elder. Laura is originally from the Midwest and attended the University of Indianapolis, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Youth Ministry. Laura then completed a Master of Divinity degree at Duke Divinity School in Durham, NC. While at Duke, Laura was involved in several ministries opportunities and has since that time completed a Clinical Pastoral Education program at the UCSF Medical Center. At Pacific, she provides spiritual care and support to individuals and student groups or programs, such as Interfaith Council, Spirit and Pride, and the United Methodist Bishop's Scholars Program.
- Jan Wammack
Jan Wammack is the Wedding and Events Coordinator for Morris Chapel. Jan oversees all the events booked in the chapel, including: weddings, memorials, baptisms, quinceañeras, student events, and weekly services.
- Dyan Hollenhorst, Affiliate Staff Member
Dyan Hollenhorst is the Catholic Chaplain at Pacific. She is employed by the Diocese of Stockton to work directly with the Newman Catholic Community to encourage faith, fellowship, and spiritual growth on campus. Dyan was born and raised in the central valley of California. She is married to her husband, Glen, and together they have five grown children. As her children grew Dyan returned to school (California State University, Stanislaus) as a non-traditional student to receive a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology. She went on to earn two graduate degrees, a Master of Theological Studies and a MA in Ministry for a Multicultural Church, from the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, CA.
- Ralph Roberts, Affiliate Staff Member
Ralph Roberts is a Staff Member and the Team Leader for InterVarsity. A Originally from Des Moines, Iowa, Ralph now calls Stockton home. Ralph graduated from Pacific with a Bachelor of Music degree, where he also met his wife Julie. He is currently pursuing an MA in Intercultural Studies (Fuller Theological Seminary), and is passionate about developing and empowering student leadership. In his free time Ralph enjoys books, board games, and conversation over a great cup of coffee.
- Lauren McDermott, Affiliate Staff Member
Lauren McDermott is a staff member with InterVarsity. As an Intervarsity staff member, she helps plan and facilitate Pacific Christian Fellowship activities and events on campus. She graduated from Pacific with a degree in English and Classical Studies. She is passionate about helping students get to know Jesus for the first time and learn to study the Bible.
- Robbie Frederiksen, Affiliate Staff Member
Robbie Frederiksen is the Director of Young Adult Ministries at Central United Methodist Church, located just across the street from Pacific. He works with United Methodist students and plans the Methodist Student Ministries events and programs. Robbie recently moved to Stockton from Portland, Oregon where he graduated from George Fox University with a degree in Christian Ministry. Robbie loves spending time on his bike, playing with his Labrador pup, and discussing life and theology.
- Colin McInnis, Student Employee: Western Religions Inclusion Coordinator
Colin McInnis is the Western Religions Inclusion Coordinator. He is studying Speech Language Pathology and hopes to graduate through the Masters program here at Pacific and become a Speech Therapist. The Western Religions Inclusion Coordinator has the main responsibility of working as a liaison between registered student groups associated with Western religions and traditions and the Religious and Spiritual Life Staff. The purpose of this role is to help deepen connections between student clubs and the Chaplain's Office, to promote interfaith awareness and religious literacy, and to assist in the department's mission of supporting students from various faith and non-faith identities.
- Michelle Lacondeguy, Student Employee: Service and Social Justice Advocate
Michelle Lacondeguy is the Service and Social Justice Advocate. She is studying Sociology, with a minor in Psychology. The Service and Social Justice Advocate has the main responsibility to work as a liaison with Religious and Spiritual Life staff and the associated student groups. The purpose of this role is to help in the execution of the department's objective to provide opportunities for students to engage in both action and dialogue concerning the intersection of religion and social justice. The Service and Social Justice Advocate assists in planning and leading social justice opportunities.
- Brianna Williams, Student Employee: Eastern Religions Inclusion Coordinator
Brianna Williams is the Eastern Religions Inclusions Coordinator. She is studying Political Science with a focus in International Relationas and Pre-law. The Eastern Religions Inclusion Coordinator has the main responsibility of working as a liaison between registered student groups associated with Eastern religions and traditions and the Religious and Spiritual Life Staff. The purpose of this role is to help deepen connections between student clubs and the Chaplain's Office, to promote interfaith awareness and religious literacy, and to assist in the department's mission of supporting students from various faith and non-faith identities.
- Nura Othman, Student Employee: Interfaith Advocate
Nura Othman is the Interfaith Advocate. She is studying Biochemistry with a Pre-Medicine emphasis. The Interfaith Advocate has the main responsibility to work as a liaison with Religious and Spiritual Life staff and associated student groups. The purpose of this role is to help in the execution of the department's goal to identify the religious and spiritual needs of students and to provide or develop programming to meet those needs. The Interfaith Advocate assists in connecting individuals and student groups in order to create engaging educational opportunities for students and the Pacific community.