Meet the team. This group works crazy-hard to create environments to help you engage, get involved, and grow in your faith journey. The best part? They're very normal people! Find out just how normal by reading their bio.

If there's anything we can help you with, please let us know. We're here for you.

  • After serving as the Student Ministries Pastor for 10 years, Josh Petersen is now the Lead Pastor of Immanuel Church. He’s married to Heidi and together they live with Jake, Logan, Cole and Sawyer at the circus they call home.


    Pastor of Worship & NEXT GEN ENVIRONMENTS


    Having joined the staff in 2003, Kelly loves leading the Service Design Ministry, and enjoys providing oversight for Children's and Student Ministries. He's deeply grateful to be Christy’s husband, and dad to their three awesome sons. Kelly loves traveling, golfing, and the Chicago Cubs. He's also passionate about playing, and learning everything there is to know about acoustic guitars.

  • BRYAN Bicket


    One of the pastors at Immanuel, Bryan likes sports, good food, and hosting people at his home. Most importantly, he loves Jesus, his unbelievably incredible wife, Betsy, and their three sons, Caleb, Joshua, and Josiah. Bryan and his family have just begun the journey known as foster parenting. 




    Erik works with two teams of volunteer staff creating environments where middle school and high school students can find community and build their relationships with God. He loves doing this ministry with his wife Casey, and enjoys staying active and cooling off with a Dr. Pepper!

  • Jurrell and his family moved to Lake County from New Orleans in the summer of 2007 and they have been part of the Immanuel family since 2008.  He served as an Elder from 2010 until he joined the Immanuel staff in 2013.  Jurrell and his lovely wife Sheryll, have three sons: Jurrell Jr., Joell and Jamel. 


    Director of guest services

    Linda loves to help visitors get connected and supports a team of volunteers who create a welcoming, comfortable, and caring Sunday morning environment. She and her husband Art, have three adult children. They enjoy traveling, boating, and nature hikes.

    DIRECTOR OF icKids

    Jodi is thrilled to be joining the Immanuel team as the Director of Children’s Ministry. Jodi has been working in education for the past 24 years. She lives in Grayslake with her husband Bob and two boys, Zack and Tyler. Jodi enjoys time spent outside and being active through walking, golfing and participating in crossfit. Jodi’s goal is to leave today a better place than it was yesterday by investing in the life of someone else.



    Dagmar loves being a mom to her two daughters, Megan and Kalie. She lives in Bristol, Wisconsin with her husband and two pugs. When not at work she enjoys reading, trying out a new recipie in the kitchen, coffee with friends and getting lost in the depths of Pinterest.


    office administrator

    Sue enjoys being behind the scenes in Immanuel's offices, serving for almost 16 years. She loves checking things off her to-do list and is considered slightly obsessive by some, but prefers to be called detail-oriented. Sue and her husband Mike, have two married children and five grandchildren and one big, black Beauvier des Flanders named Elah. 


    congregational care coordinator

    Heather is the extrovert of the front offices, ready to welcome each guest with a smile, hug, joke or a listening ear when needed. Immanuel has been her home church pretty much since birth. Heather and her handsome husband Jon, love spending time as a family with their three incredibly active boys.


    creative Director

    Jay is husband to Michelle and father to sons Bonn and Finn. When he isn't creating multi-media content, he can be found spending time with his family or fishing lakes in his kayak (usually not catching much).

  • Dave's youth as an entertainment technician, actor, and musician has equipped him perfectly for his role of Technical Director. He spends his days designing and perfecting various technical elements within a Sunday service and within the church itself. On any given Sunday, he can usually be found behind either the sound console or the drums. 

  • Diane Verratti

    ministry facilitator

    Diane Verratti is thankful to God for the privilege of serving on Immanuel's staff since 1988. Reading (mostly mysteries) and walking are favorite leisure activities. She loves - in no particular order - cats, strong coffee, her husband, sons, their wives and their children. She has been actively involved as a volunteer in the revitalization of Waukegan's downtown for the last 16 years.



    For five years, Tony has lead the Recovery Ministry at Immanuel. He's been married to his wife, Pamela, for 33 years and they have three kids and six grandkids. Tony especially enjoys watching the Bears, Blackhawks, and Cubs - a true Chicago sports fan.

  • Joanna Elrod


    Joanna provides administrative support to our Service Design team. In addition to leading worship, she heads up Singles Ministry and counts it as one of her greatest blessings. Of all the titles she’s ever had, her favorite is “Aunt Jo.” Her nieces and nephews bring her great joy! 

  • Gaylord strahan

    Manager of FACILITIES

    Gaylord has been a part of the Immanuel family since 1971, and has been on staff since 2001. When he's not busy at work keeping Immanuel ready for the countless ministries that happen each week, he can be found gardening and spending time with his wife, Marilyn. 

  • Carlton Cessna

    Executive Director of icSports

  • JOn Welsch

    Manager of Facilities and Grounds