Congregation Council & Preschool board

2017-2018


  • Gwen jacobs, president

    congregation council

    Born and raised in Chicago, I had a solid upbringing in the Methodist Church with brilliant memories of First Communion, active Sunday School, Confirmation, and Youth Group Excursions. I met Mike Jacobs at University of Illinois (Go Illini!) in the early 80s and we celebrate 34 years of marriage this June. Moving all over the country pursuing career goals was difficult but character building. Mike and I always had our faith to ground us but it wasn’t until we had children that we became actively involved in a local church community as we wanted our children to have a faith-based upbringing. Our sons, Mickey and Matt, both enlisted in the Marine Corps and we couldn’t be prouder. Mickey has retired from the Corps and provided us with a beautiful daughter-in-law, Sue. Sgt. Matthew Jacobs is currently deployed. I’ve served on the Council at Immanuel Lutheran in California in several different capacities and will never forget some “wise” advise I received there — ask not what your church community can do for you but what you can do for your church community. We are stronger, in every way, together.

  • Debbie Nelson, President Elect

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  • jack ranby, vice president, chair personnel committee

    congregation council

    I am a long-time resident of Arcadia having attended Kachina Elementary and Arcadia HS. I have been a member of POP since 1992. I am married with two adult sons. I am a recovering attorney, having worked in the Tax Division of the Arizona Attorney’s Office for nearly 30 years. I also was a Judge Advocate in the Air Force, with active and reserve duty spanning 33 years. My final assignment was at Air Force Space Command as the Senior Reserve Judge Advocate. When not helping run the audio system at POP, I am busy planning my next sailing adventure.

  • Kris Kainass, secretary

    member at large

    congregation council


  • Tony hammond, treasurer

    congregation council

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  • les holland, Member at large

    congregation council

    I was born and grew up in southern Illinois; 4-H Club member for 10 years, winning 3 National Awards; BSEE (Electrical Engineering), 1966, University of Illinois; Knights of St. Pat (College of Engineering award to Graduating Seniors for service to the College, 8-15 per year).I worked at several Phoenix-area Motorola locations for ~25 years in Computer Programming and Engineering Management where I used Interactive Computer Graphics to solve complex problems. Life Member: Mensa, University of Illinois Alumni Association; IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers), Computer Society, Eta Kappa Nu, Tau Beta Pi. Member of POP since 1973. CT/RTC (Choice Theory/Reality Therapy Certification) from the William Glasser Institute, 2011.

  • steve edgar, member at large

    congregation council

    I have been a member of Prince of Peace since 1959, having grown up in the church community. Over the years I have served on numerous Church Councils, Preschool Boards, Church Committees. I head up the Rock-N-Roll Marathon water stations, have been a member of the Packathon Committee for three years, and can usually be seen flipping hamburgers at POP Street Fairs or picnics. During the week, I am a self-employed paint contractor, have been married to Laurel Edgar for 35 years, and am father to two adult children. I love to garden, cook, travel and all things wine. Prince of Peace's outreach to the community through the preschool and in various service activities that help us share our love of Christ outside the sanctuary are of prime importance to me.

  • carrie goodman, member at large

    congregation council

    My family and I are very happy to have found a home here at Prince of Peace. Born in Los Angeles, I was baptized in a United Church of Christ church. My parents later moved our family to Bullhead City, AZ where I was very involved at Hope United Methodist Church and completed confirmation. I earned my Bachelor of Science degree in Dental Hygiene from NAU in 1995 and currently work in the Biltmore area. I have lived in Scottsdale/Phoenix for 22 years and had tried several churches in the area but never felt at home. My husband, Drew and I were married in 2006 and we have two beautiful children — Evan (10), Cailee (8). We found Prince of Peace when looking for a preschool for our kids. It has been a blessing and a joy to be part of such a wonderful church family. This will be my 3rd year serving on Church Council. My family and I continue to grow our faith in this place of grace. 

  • martha weld member at large

    congregation council

    I was born in England, brought up in the Roman Catholic faith. I married an American serviceman; we came to the US in 1959. Our first base was Ellsworth AFB near Rapid City, SD. I have two boys. My husband passed in April 1985. We moved around in the 23 years he was in the Air Force. I first came to AZ in 1971. In 1988 I took a job in Massachusetts with Marriott as a retail manager. I worked for them for over 20 years in MA, NM, and ended up in Phoenix Sky Harbor. I retired in 2002. A lady who lived in my complex needed a ride to church (Abiding Savior) so I took her. Rather than come back for her, I decided to stay. I enjoyed the service very much and the people were so warm and outgoing that eventually I became a member. I served as Church Council President twice and also as a Trustee. I was chairperson of the Altar Guild for four years. I came to Prince Of Peace in August 2013.

  • janet dejonge, preschool liaison

    congregation council and preschool board


  • val kainass, president & treasurer

    preschool board

    I am originally from Milwaukee, WI and have been living in Phoenix for the past 20 years. I am employed by Salt River Project (SRP) and work in their technology area. My Computer Information Science degree is from St. Norbert College in De Pere, WI. I am married to Kris and together we have three children — Gwen (11), Brody (9), and Blake (5). My family became involved with Prince of Peace when our oldest child started at the Preschool and I have served on the Preschool Board for six of the last eight years. I love sports and still remain a loyal fan of many of my Wisconsin teams. I love to travel, play golf and spend time with my family (especially watching the kids play sports).


  • abby brown, secretary

    preschool board

    I was born and raised in a small town in Iowa and moved to Phoenix to do my student teaching in 2003. A year later I met my husband, Neal, and we now have three daughters. Harper and Kinzie are POP Preschool alums and currently attend Hopi, and Keaton is at POP Preschool. I hold a doctorate in education from Creighton University and am the middle school math academic coach for Scottsdale Unified School District.

  • janell (jan) beebe, member at large

    preschool board

    I have been a member of Prince of Peace for about eight years. When I joined the church, I lived just down the street, but have since moved to El Mirage so I have a bit of a commute! I moved to Arizona in 1989 from a lovely town in Illinois called Moline. Located on the Mississippi River, it happens to be the home of John Deere. I worked at John Deere Industrial Equipment for 15 years prior to coming to Arizona. I returned to college and, at 58, graduated with an Associates Degree in Early Childhood and certification in Family Services. After four years with Head Start, for the last nine years I have taught at Cross Roads Preschool and Kindergarten. I am a proud member of the Beebe family consisting of my son, Brad, daughter-in-law, Stephanie, and my three wonderful grandsons, Tyler, Parker and Cooper. My husband, Jim, passed away in 2002. My church, family and job keep me busy and fill my life with happiness!

  • josh hoffner, member at large

    preschool board

    I am a journalist for The Associated Press and the father of a 21-month-old boy, Miles, and a second on the way in June. My wife, Anna Jo, and I live in Arcadia near Prince of Peace. I grew up in North and South Dakota before becoming an editor and reporter for the AP in Bismarck, N.D. I later moved to New York City where I worked as an editor on the AP's national editing desk at its global headquarters in Manhattan, handling big stories such as the Sept. 11 attacks and Hurricane Katrina. I also served as the NYC editor for the AP, overseeing about 30 reporters in the AP's largest domestic bureau. I moved to Arizona in 2009 where I helped launch the AP's West Regional operation based in downtown Phoenix. I now serve as Southwest News Editor and immigration editor for the AP. In my spare time, I enjoy writing and spending quality time with Anna Jo and little Miles. And I also enjoy sleep — something in short supply with a toddler, full-time job and a second child on the way. I am a lifelong Lutheran. My mom was a church organist and always active in the local congregation and my father once served as president of Trinity Lutheran Church in Yankton, S.D.

  • jim schmidlin, member at large

    preschool board

    I have served on the Preschool Board for one year and would like to continue being on it. I grew up in a Lutheran church in Ohio and was active in all aspects of Lutheran life. I was in the Coast Guard, stationed in the Great Lakes for four years. During the last nine years I have been in the Coast Guard Auxiliary. I am often on patrol on Arizona lakes and the Colorado River and am a Coast Guard First Responder. I spent 34 years working at Motorola, overseeing the building of Motorola plants. I am a volunteer at many Fiesta Bowl events, a judge at the Arizona State Science and Engineering Fair, and volunteer at spring training games. I hope that by being on the Preschool Board I can help maintain the excellent practices in place today, give children a firm basis for the future, and help the school grow in a new, innovative and exciting direction.


  • Yvonne scaramella

    teacher representative

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  • brenda baldwin

    teacher representative

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