Ministry Team

Rev. Dr. Mark R. Schulz, Senior Pastor

Rev. Dr. Mark R. Schulz

Senior Pastor 

Pastor Mark is the Senior Pastor at Trinity and the lead pastor at the Mission campus. His greatest joy in ministry is connecting people to the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ and helping them grow as followers of Jesus. Pastor Mark has been with Trinity since 2013 and has served in pastoral ministry for over thirty years in Omaha, Chicago, and Kansas. He enjoys working out, watching all sports, and working in his yard. Pastor Mark and his wife, Nancy, have two adult daughters.

Rev. Philip Cook, Lead Pastor, Shawnee Campus

Rev. Philip Cook

Lead Pastor, Shawnee Campus

Pastor Phil is an Associate Pastor at Trinity and the lead pastor at the Shawnee campus. His greatest passions in ministry are seeing people find help, hope, and freedom in Jesus from the pain in their life caused by sin, and to help people know and follow Jesus more closely in their lives. Pastor Phil joined Trinity’s staff in 2015 after serving nine years in the Dallas area. He enjoys being outdoors and enjoying God’s creation, and playing with tools. Pastor Phil’s wife, Rebeka, is his partner in ministry as they raise three young children.

Rev. Ron Flentgen

Rev. Ronald Flentgen

Associate Pastor 

Pastor Ron is a part-time Associate Pastor at Trinity, assisting with preaching, leading worship, care ministry, and Bible class teaching. His greatest passion is to work with Holy Scripture to relate the Gospel to the lives of God’s people. Pastor Ron is in his fifty-fourth year of ministry. He enjoys reading, listening to classical music, watching old movies, walking, and stimulating conversation.

Rhonda Synovec

Rhonda Synovec

Children Family Minister

Rhonda is Director of Family Life Ministry across both campuses, serving children, youth, and their families. Her passion in ministry is to equip families to grow together in their faith and love for Jesus. Rhonda began her ministry at Trinity as a volunteer in 1992 and later joined the staff part-time before transitioning into family life ministry in 2014. She enjoys time with friends, traveling, watching musicals, concerts and plays, and reading.

Rhonda Synovec

Beth Stephens

Youth Family Minister

DCE Beth Stephens is the Youth Family Minister at Trinity. Her greatest joy in ministry is reminding students and their families that while we live in a world full of change and confusion, our God is constant and clear. Beth joined Trinity’s staff in 2018. Previously she served in Battle Creek, Michigan, for three years.  In her free time, she likes to find good books to read, trails to get lost on, lakes to kayak, and new places to eat or get coffee.


Tom Perry, Senior Ministry Leader

Tom Perry

Senior Ministry Leader

Tom is Trinity’s Senior Ministry leader in which he assists people age sixty and over in discerning God’s will in their lives. His passion is helping people of all ages understand that as God’s children they continue to be servants in God’s kingdom. He enjoys working with the many gifted members of our congregation and the community to help provide resources that are of value in older adults’ lives. Tom enjoys reading, cooking, golf, and his grand kids.

Ben A. Spalding, Director of Music and the Arts

Ben A. Spalding

Director of Music and the Arts 

Ben is the Director of Music and the Arts for Trinity and oversees all liturgical, professional, and community Music and Arts programming. He is a versatile musician, sought after as conductor, composer, and keyboard artist. Prior to joining Trinity’s staff in 2010, he held positions as an educator at the high school and university levels and has served in many denominations over the last 15 years. Ben received undergraduate degrees in voice and piano and master’s degrees in conducting and composition. He has been married to Stephanie since 2008, and they have a wonderful Yorkshire Terrier, Maestro. His interests include movies, tennis, swimming, and roller coasters.

Dr. Lara West, Organist

Dr. Lara L. West


As Trinity’s organist, Lara leads congregational song, accompanies the choir, and provides preludes and postludes for worship. A lifelong Lutheran, she served as music minister at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Lawrence for thirteen years before joining Trinity’s staff. She enjoys shape note singing, contra dancing, traveling to the mountains, and speaking German. Lara and her husband, Eric, live in Atchison, Kansas, where they both teach at Benedictine College.

Dr. Lara West, Organist

Brandon Draper

Worship Leader, Shawnee Campus

Brandon Draper has enjoyed a celebrated career as drummer, percussionist, producer, multi-instrumentalist, and educator. In addition to freelancing and teaching, he currently performs as a solo artist, multi-instrumentalist. Currently Draper is on music faculty at the University of Kansas where he teaches jazz drums, world percussion, steel band and is the director of Music Enterprise certificate combining music business and entrepreneurship.

Jo Ann Emerson, Preschool Director

Jo Ann Emerson

Preschool Director

Jo Ann is the Director of Trinity Lutheran Church Preschool and loves working with our preschool families. After 16 years of teaching elementary school, she began teaching at the preschool in 2011 and assumed the director role in 2016. Jo Ann serves on the Christian Early Childhood Association’s Board of Directors, which seeks to bring early childhood experts and presenters to the metro area. In her spare time, Jo Ann enjoys shopping for bargains, reading psychological thrillers, baking sweet treats, and walking her puppy, Sweetie.

Larry Conrad, Administrator

Larry Conrad


Larry manages facility and support functions, including property management, office administration, information technology, payroll/benefits, accounting, and process support. He has been a church administrator since 1999 and holds a Certified Church Administrator (CCA) designation. Larry also plays saxophone and flute in the Shawnee campus praise team. He enjoys traveling, growing herbs, and cooking.

Gretchen Hollman, Office Supervisor

Gretchen Hollman

Office Supervisor

Gretchen serves as a central hub of information and communications for the church as editor of the newsletters and webmaster. Gretchen has served at Trinity since 2012. She enjoys family time, singing, and sewing.

Barb Estes, Staff Support

Barb Estes

Staff Support

Barb provides office support for the staff. Her responsibilities include new member assimilation, maintaining the prayer list, and preparing worship slides. Barb enjoys knitting, spending time with family, especially her grandchildren, and walking her dog, Buddy.

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