About Us / Our Staff
Rev. Dr. Lucas V. Woodford
President Woodford is a graduate of Concordia University St. Paul and Concordia Seminary, St. Louis (M.Div. and S.T.M., 2003). His first call was to First Immanuel Lutheran Church in Cedarburg, Wisconsin and served as Senior Pastor of Zion Lutheran Church and School, Mayer, Minnesota (2005 – 2018). He holds the D.Min. in Christian Outreach from Concordia Theological Seminary, Ft. Wayne (2011). His project dissertation was published as Great Commission, Great Confusion, or Great Confession? (Wipf & Stock, 2012). He is the author of several articles that have appeared in The Lutheran WITNESS and LOGIA. He has served the Minnesota South District as circuit counselor, member of the Board of Directors, Second Vice President, and was elected President in June of 2018. He is a member of the Board of Regents of Concordia University St. Paul. He is a frequently invited conference speaker and has served as presenter at DOXOLOGY Spotlight/Insight Conferences. Lucas and his wife, Rebecca, are parents of Bella (2004), Thaddeus (2007), Aletheia (2009), Klaci (2012), Soteria (2014) and Titus (2017). He enjoys reading, writing, hunting, fishing, and spending time with his family.
Executive Assistant to the President
Rev. Bob Schulze
Bob Schulze serves as Executive Assistant to the President in the Minnesota South District of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod. In this position he assists the President in his administrative responsibilities, and provides counsel and guidance to congregations and church staff in times of transition, conflict or crisis. His duties include the orientation of new workers in the District, in particular new pastors in their first years of ministry.
Bob graduated from Concordia, St. Paul in 1971, and from Concordia Theological Seminary, Springfield in 1975. He served for seventeen years in British Columbia, Canada leading congregations in Campbell River and Abbotsford. In Minnesota he served congregations in Bloomington, Worthington and Lakeville.
Bob and his wife Beth have four adult children - Jennifer, Kristen, Heather and Ben, and eight grandchildren.
Assistant to the President: Missions
Rev. Dr. William Utech
William Utech is Assistant to the District President for Missions in the Minnesota South District of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. In this position he works with pastors and congregations to plant new churches and begin new Gospel ministries that will introduce un-churched people to the person and work of Jesus. He encourages and promotes creative and new approaches to evangelism and outreach, and he facilitates the assessment and training of future church planters.
He comes to this position after serving as Associate Professor of Practical Theology and Director of Resident Field Education at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis for 17 years. Before that he served as pastor of Holy Emmanuel in Bloomington, Minn.
Dr. Utech has also served as a member of: the Board of Trustees of the Lutheran Haven Retirement Center of Oviedo, Florida; the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod’s Commission on Worship; and the Board of Directors of Grace Place Lutheran Wellness Ministries.
He and his wife Lori have two daughters—Annmarie and Claire.
Assistant to the President: Mission Formation, Regions 1 & 2
Dr. Phillip Johnson
Phil Johnson serves as Assistant to the District President for Mission Formation in the Minnesota South District of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. In this position he assists pastors and congregations to develop intentional, purposeful engagement in ministry beyond their current membership by facilitating training and developing resources that contribute to a long-term process of mission formation and outreach leadership development.
Phil graduated from Concordia, St. Paul in 1982 as the second graduate of the newly formed Director of Evangelism program. He served for 20 years at Christ Lutheran in Lincoln, NE and Peace Lutheran in Arvada, CO as a Director of Christian Outreach. Prior to his current position he served for 12 years as an instructor at Concordia University, St. Paul and the coordinator of the Director of Christian Outreach program.
Phil and his wife Sandy have four adult children (Sarah, Andrew, Benjamin, Philip) and four grandchildren. In his leisure time Phil enjoys golfing, fishing, hunting, and spending time with family.
Public Policy Advocate
Rev. Fredric Hinz
Rev. Fredric Hinz currently serves as the Public Policy Advocate for both Minnesota North and South Districts of the LCMS. As such, he represents the LCMS in matters pertaining to the life issues (abortion and doctor-assisted Suicide), issues related to marriage family and sexuality and issues related to religious freedom, including parental choice in education. A graduate of Trinity Lutheran School (Waconia), Mayer Lutheran High School, Concordia Seward, Chicago State University, and Luther Northwestern Seminary, Fred has taught biological science on both high school and college levels, owned and operated retail shoe stores, and served as a parish pastor in St. James, MN, and Gaylord, MN. In addition to active engagement in the public policy matters of the Synod, Fred also advocates for the advancement of Intelligent Design theory. He and his wife, Rachel, have been married for 40 years, and together they have three married children who have so far given them ten grandchildren. They reside in Gaylord, MN.
Assistant to the President for Education & Commissioned Ministers
Mr. Sean Martens
Sean Martens serves as Assistant to the President for Education and Commissioned Ministers. In this role, he is tasked with providing consulting services and assistance to the schools, administrators, and teachers of the district. Martens has also served as principal at Trinity Lone Oak in Eagan, teacher and interim principal at St. John Lutheran Church, Seward Nebraska, assistant football coach at Concordia University, Seward, Nebraska, and teacher/coach at Faith Lutheran, Las Vegas, Nevada. One of his passions is coaching and he currently is an assistant football coach at Apple Valley High School.
Sean is married to Brenda. They have four children—Devin, Zachary, Madeline, and Luke.
Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) District Vice President
Mr. Kai Larson
Kai began his work with LCEF and the District in March 2017. Kai comes to LCEF with a communications degree from Minnesota State University and has worked in various roles in sales, banking and management for the past 14 years in Minnesota and most recently with New York Life.
Kai and his wife Kimberly have been married for 5 ½ years and have one child, Paige (4). Kai and his family are current members of Beautiful Savior, Plymouth, MN. His Dad was an LCMS pastor who has served in a variety of roles and districts in the upper-Midwest. Kai knows the LCMS culture, has a strong banking background and looks forwards to building relationships with congregations, pastors and leaders.
Director of Communications and Mission Support
Mr. Billy Schultz
In his role, Billy Schultz is tasked with developing the overall communications strategy and producing electronic and print pieces for the district. Additionally, he supports the work of of Dr. Utech.
Originally from the Chicago area, Billy holds a BA and MA from Concordia University, St. Paul. In his free time, he plays guitar, attends a variety of sporting events, enjoys golf, finds the best coffee shops the Twin Cities has to offer, and spends way too much time looking at weather maps in the spring and summer.
Gift Planning Counselor
Mr. Matthew Steiner
Phone: 952-223-2155 or 651-641-8243
Dr. Glenn W. Offermann
The District Archives contain records, materials, and documents relating to the life and work of our congregations and the Minnesota South District through the years. The Archives contain congregational histories, congregational files, the papers of former District Presidents and other church workers, among other materials. Please consult Dr. Glenn W. Offermann, the District Archivist, for help in using the resources of the District Archives. He may be reached at 1371 W. Burke Avenue in Roseville, Minnesota 55113.