Emmanuel Staff

Mark Carlson, Senior Pastor

The Reverend Mark Carlson has served as Sr. Pastor of Emmanuel Lutheran Church since his installation in November, 2011. His previous pastorates were at Zion Lutheran Church, Bogalusa, Louisiana, from June, 1983 until January, 1987; and St. James Lutheran Church, Marion, Indiana, from February, 1987 until October, 2011. Pastor Carlson has been married to his wife, Carole since April 28, 1979. They are blessed with four children; Ryan, Timothy, Kristin, and Lauren. Pastor Carlson is guided in his life and ministry by the personal mission statement, “A Passion for God and His heart for people”.

Steve Holtman, Director of Education, Missions, and Worship

Steve was installed as a Vicar at Emmanuel Lutheran Church on Oct 7, 2018. He began the Specific Ministry Pastor (SMP) program in September, 2016 at Prince of Peace – Springfield, VA. Prior to that, Steve served almost 25 years in the United States Army and over 10 years with Caterpillar, Inc. In 2012, Steve was Re-Directed when he and his wife Kathy began doing a variety of Domestic and International Missions. They are blessed to have two sons, James and Curtis who is married to Lacey and one granddaughter, Amelia. Their family motto is: Always an Adventure.

John Cross, Director of Operations

John was born and raised here in the Dayton area.   A graduate of Oakwood HS, as well as Wright State and Xavier Universities, John was raised Catholic and joined Emmanuel shortly after he and his wife Jillyn were married.  Formerly a financial advisor with JP Morgan, John joined the staff of Emmanuel as our Manager of Operations in 2016.  When not busy serving on our Campus ministry team, as well as the Endowment, Stewardship, and Worship Committees, John is also an active part of our Worship team for Sunday morning worship services.  In addition, John and Jillyn are busy raising their one son, Charlie, who is in the midst of his toddler years.

Seth Illich, Manager of Youth and Young Adult Discipleship

Seth Illich is a Director of Christian Education (DCE) serving in the role of Manager of Youth and Young Adult Discipleship. He graduated from Concordia University Chicago in December of 2012 with a DCE Degree and a minor in Theology. After graduation he took the call to serve at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church in Iowa City, IA. In 2015, he and his wife Emily moved to the Dayton area. Seth is passionate about helping Youth and Young Adults grow in their faith, leadership, and life skills and he is excited to work with the Youth and Young Adults of Emmanuel.

Tony Latessa, Web Administrator/Communications Ministry Team Leader

Originally from Tipp City, OH, Tony grew up Catholic and was very involved as a teen in the Ohio Youth Commission’s youth ministry program for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.  After high school, Tony attended the University of Dayton, where he received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and his Law Degree.  It was at this time that he met and later married his wife Laura in 1993.  Tony and Laura have three children, Nick, Bethaney, and Daniel.  Tony enjoys following all of his kids various activities, and he and Laura continue to be actively involved in their kids youth groups at Emmanuel.  Tony serves as our Web Administrator and the Leader of our Communications Ministry Team.

Randy Holdeman, Manager of Connection Groups and Lay Ministry

Randy was born and raised in northern Indiana.  He attended Trinity Lutheran Church where he was baptized and confirmed.  Shortly after graduating from Manchester University he relocated to Dayton, Ohio where he has lived since.  He married his wife Karen on Jan. 1, 1983.  They enjoy doing ministry and mission together, and have been blessed with faith-filled children… Kristin & Charlie, Laura & Dan, Ranae & Zach, Elise, and 10 grandchildren.

 Randy has always had a passion for sharing the Gospel and his life mission statement is based on Psalm 71:18 “Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, my God, till I declare Your power to the next generation, Your mighty acts to all who are to come.” 

In addition to camping and family activities, Randy enjoys life coaching, teaching, and using multimedia technologies to enhance the delivery of the Gospel message.  He is excited to be a part of God’s Kingdom work through Connection Groups and Lay Ministry at Emmanuel.

Wilson Cohoon, Manger of Missions

Wilson was born and raised in Kansas. He jokes that he did twenty years in Leavenworth, but on the outside. His childhood religious experience was with a cult and during a Sunday school opening he received a clear picture that what he had been taught just wasn’t right. A high school friend and he began to discuss their faiths and as a junior he accepted Jesus as his Saviour and joined the Presbyterian Church.

Wilson and his wife Val have a son, Scott; daughter, Kelly; and grandson Corey. They once served as youth directors at Emmanuel. In 1987 after returning from a cruise, he was asked about going to Haiti for a visit to a beginning orphanage. In 1988 he and Val visited the Crow Indian reservation and then he visited the orphanage in Haiti. The Lord had called him into mission. Val also has a heart for missions and besides accompanying Wilson to Haiti has a heart for an Alaskan mission. His passion for mission has not waned. He has served on the Mission Board for many years and now serves as the Mission Team Director as well as a Lay Minister.

Magdalena Greenewald, Director ELC Worship Choir

Earning her Bachelor’s Degree in Vocal Performance at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, with a GPA of 3.963, Magdalena Greenewald wishes to inspire all through her performing and teaching to love and appreciate music and its power. For the past three seasons, she has been a full-time member of the May Festival Chorus of Cincinnati. In addition to performing with the May Festival Chorus, she has performed with Wright State University Opera in their full production of Roger’s and Hammerstein’s Pirates of Penzance, and in their Opera Scenes production in excerpts from Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd and Poulenc’s Dialogue of the Carmelites. While at Sinclair Community College, her solo appearances in their Opera Scenes production consisted of playing Laurey Williams in scenes from Oklahoma and singing Gartin’s art song The Lilac Tree. Greenewald has also performed with the Wright State University Chorus (Fall 2014-Spring 2016), with the Sinclair Community College Chorus (Fall 2012-Spring 2014), and with the Sinclair Community College Women’s Chorale (Spring 2013).

Marcie Bailey, Admin Assistant, Church Statistics

Marcie has lived in the Dayton area for at least 25 years. She was raised in Cleveland, OH and attended the Immanuel Lutheran Church. She joined Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Kettering 9 years ago, and serves as Administrative Assistant – Church Statistics on Monday and Wednesdays. She is divorced and settled in a Townhouse. Marcie attends several Bible studies during the week and enjoys the fellowship we have in the church.

Laura Latessa, Admin Assistant, Worship

Born in Colorado Springs, Laura grew up across the country as the daughter of an Air Force officer, eventually settling in Dayton.  A life-long Lutheran, she met and later married Tony Latessa.  She worked as an office manager at both Captial University and the University of Dayton before leaving to work as a stay-at-home mother to her three children (Nick, Bethaney, and Daniel).  As the kids grew, Laura worked for several years as a Preschool Teacher, and was active in the PTO at her children’s schools, serving as PTO secretary and for several years as the chairperson of the school book fair.  She is very involved at Emmanuel, serving in the nursery, as a mentor to the Youth, and working on VBS.  In 2013, Laura began working at Emmanuel as an Admin, initially focusing on Office Communications, and now working with our Worship teams.

Emily Illich, Admin Assistant, Office

Devon Sadowski, Maintenance Technician  

James Miller, Campus Caretaker ,