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Jim Thelen, Senior Pastor: Pastor Jim was born in Milwaukee, WI. He graduated from Milwaukee Lutheran High School and received his degree from Concordia University Mequon for pre-seminary and psychology. He graduated from St. Louis Seminary with his Master of Divinity, 1989. He has served churches in Iowa, Michigan, and Wisconsin and was called to Ascension Lutheran Church, December 2010. Pastor Thelen and his wife, Kristin, have seven children, ranging in age from teens to adult, plus five grandchildren! He enjoys playing guitar, video games, comedy and action movies, rearranging furniture, and being silly with children. (EMAIL)

Barry Tschanz, Assistant to Pastor Thelen and Visitation (EMAIL)


Douglas Duy, Executive Pastor: Pastor Doug is originally from Kansas City.  He grew up in a very German Lutheran Church in Kansas City where his grandfather was a founding member.  He graduated from both Missouri Western State University and the University of Kansas.  Following graduation, he moved to Tucson to work for the Hughes Aircraft Company/Raytheon in a number of cost and engineering positions.  He retired from Hughes/Raytheon after 26 years.  In Tucson he attended the Lutheran Servanthood School and was commissioned as a Deacon in 1992.  He continued serving as a Deacon throughout the greater Tucson area until his ordination as a Pastor in 2019.  Pastor Doug and his wonderful wife Carrol, an RN, are thankful for 40 exciting years of marriage.  Together, they raised and parented three sons, as well as several Japanese foreign exchange students.  Outside church, Pastor Doug enjoys spending time with his wife as she plants and tends her gardens. Pastor Doug is also a licensed Extra-Class Amateur Radio Operator and has talked with people in over 200 countries around the world. (EMAIL)

Terrie Ashbaugh, Director of Worship and Administration: Terrie grew up as a military brat and lived in several countries before the age of 9. She began her ministry in music at the age of 14 when she taught herself to play the organ for her neighbor's church. She accompanied choirs in church and schools from that time on, sang solos, and eventually became a choir director. Her heart is for worship, enabling people to feel the presence of the spirit move them through music and scripture. (EMAIL)

Derek Barolet, Director of Modern Worship: Derek has worked in the Worship Ministry for 18 years in a variety of roles, from drummer to guitarist to worship leader. A husband to Patricia and a father to Aedon and Aurora, he is originally from Orlando Fl. At 19 he joined the US Army and served for 8 years. He has lived near Savannah, Georgia and Manhattan, Kansas where he studied Worship Ministry and Worship History at Manhattan Christian College after his time in the Army. He moved to Tucson in 2016 and enjoys the "dry heat." (EMAIL)

Callie Baker, Director of Christian Education: Callie was born in Texas, but grew up here and Tucson as the daughter of a prison chaplain. She began working at Fountain of Life Lutheran Church in their child care center at the age of 16. She continued working here through high school and college. Callie attended college at Concordia University in Irvine, California and studied Christian Education Leadership with the end goal of becoming a rostered Director of Christian Education (DCE). Shortly after her graduation Callie’s career turned from the typical role of a DCE and led her back into early childhood education. Callie has served in many roles from teacher to Director in various schools and states. Prior to joining us at Ascension Callie worked in the foster care industry licensing foster homes for approximately a year and a half. Callie’s heart always pulled her back to working in the church with children and God led her here to us. Callie; her husband, Ron; and her children, Sammi, RJ, and Otto attend weekly services at Ascension and would love to meet you! (EMAIL)

Robert Ashbaugh, Director of Communications: (EMAIL)

John Phillip, Director of Mission and Outreach, Facilities, and IT: (EMAIL)

Jo Riester, Mission and Outreach Coordinator:

Leah Weinrich, Sound and Technology: (EMAIL)

Dee Ponzio, Senior Ministries: Director of First Friday Friends and Assistant Director for Senior Moments.  Responsible  for post cards and emails to members,  scheduling entertainment,  overseeing setup, serving, table decorations and cleanup photos to communication director,  count donations to be deposited in safe, inventory supplies,  and obtain stipends for entertainment and chef, updating realm with new members, address changes and emails.

Sharon Woolridge, Fellowship Coordinator:

Eva Clonts, Director, Ascension Lutheran School: Eva was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona. She graduated from the University of Arizona with a Bachelor of Arts in Vocal Studies. While working at Resurrection Lutheran Church as a Ministry Leader in their Next Generational Ministry, Eva went back to school to get her Master of Arts in Christian Leadership at Grand Canyon University. She has a passion for sharing the love of Christ with children primarily through music. In her free time, Eva enjoys staying active, spending time with family and playing with her dogs. (EMAIL)

Staci Parrin, Assistant School Director: (EMAIL)

Veronica Wolff, Bookkeeper: Veronica grew up in Las Vegas, where she also met and married her husband (Kyle).  They have been married almost 35 years, and have 2 sons and 1 grandson.  They moved to Tucson in 2001, and after being the bookkeeper for her church in Las Vegas, she became the bookkeeper here at ALCS.   The “Wolff Pack” enjoys playing tennis together, and hiking Tumamoc. (EMAIL)



Church office: 520-297 3095 or


Ascension Lutheran Church and School

1220 West Magee Road

Tucson, AZ 85704



Office: 520.297.3095

School: 520.742.6229



Copyright © 2019 Ascension Lutheran Church and School.