Conference Assemblies lift up names for next Bishop

 In Synod News

During the months of February and March, each conference of the South Dakota Synod met to discuss and discern the next Bishop of the South Dakota Synod. Names were lifted up at each conference assembly and turned into the Bishop Election Committee. The Bishop Election committee gave each person time to fill out biographical information and other forms for the bishop election process.  During that process, fifteen names were identified. Names lifted up by conference assemblies are not nominated until his or her name is placed on the first ballot of the Synod Assembly on Friday, May 31.

The completed information turned in came from the following Ministers of Word and Sacrament in the ELCA:

  • The Rev. Heidi Binstock – WestSide Lutheran Church, Sioux Falls, SD
  • The Rev. Randy Fett – St. Ansgar’s Lutheran Church, Cannon Falls, MN
  • The Rev. Randall E. Gehring – Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, Sioux Falls, SD
  • The Rev. Scott Hackler – Brandon Lutheran Church/Split Rock Lutheran Church, Brandon, SD
  • The Rev. Constanze Hagmaier – Trinity Lutheran Church, Madison, SD
  • The Rev. Lorna H. Halaas – Director of Missional Leadership – Assistant to the Bishop, Western Iowa Synod
  • The Rev. Dr. Ramona Hayes – Evangelical Lutheran Church, Langford, SD
  • The Rev. Erika (Schmutterer) Lehmann – St. John Lutheran Church, Dimock, SD
  • The Rev. Thomas E. Opoien – Trinity Lutheran Church, Tea, SD
  • The Rev. Jeffrey Michael Otterman – Trinity Lutheran Church, Yankton, SD
  • The Rev. Rick Senner – Bethany Lutheran Church, Howard SD
  • The Rev. Dwight Stensgaard – Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, Sioux Falls, SD
  • The Rev. Bill Tesch – Director for Evangelical Mission/Associate to the Bishop, South Dakota Synod
  • The Rev. Jonathan Vehar – Peace Lutheran Church, Sioux Falls, SD
  • The Rev. Herb Wounded Head III – University Lutheran Center, Brookings, SD

Biographical information may be downloaded by clicking the link below. This information will be available until May 30, 2019.

Biographical Information – Bishop Election

Questions regarding the Bishop Election, may be directed to the Bishop Election Committee by emailing A Q&A regarding the Bishop Election can be found here.

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