Staff Bios

Meet our ministry team

Pastor Pete Panitzke – 414.422.0320, Ext. 122

Pastor Pete Panitzke

Pastor Peter Panitzke serves as the ministerial team leader, coordinating the work of the other ministerial team members. He oversees the congregation’s outreach programs and financial stewardship.

Since 1998, Pastor Panitzke has served at St. Paul’s. Prior to that, he served sixteen years at Good Shepherd Lutheran in St. Peters, Missouri — a start-up congregation in suburban St. Louis. Pastor Panitzke has been integral in the start-up of two other congregations, Apostles Lutheran Church in Dardenne Prairie, Missouri and Victory of the Lamb, Frankin, Wisconsin.

Pastor Panitzke describes himself as someone who is excited about the future and about the people around him.

Pastor David Kuehl – 414.422.0320, Ext. 121

Pastor David Kuehl

As the Pastor of Member Care at St. Paul’s, Pastor David Kuehl focuses on strengthening the relationships between people in the congregation, as well as welcoming those outside the congregation.

Among others, his duties include meeting with newly transferred members, coordinating pastoral work schedules, visiting homebound and hospitalized, and organizing the youth confirmation process.

When Pastor Kuehl was called to St. Paul’s in 1990, he left his first call, a congregation of 365 members at Shepherd of the Hills in Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota. While in Minnesota, he also served on the Commission for Communication and Financial Support of the District of Minnesota and on the Board of Regents at St. Croix Lutheran High School in West St. Paul, Minnesota.

Pastor Kuehl serves as the circuit pastor of the Southern Circuit of the Western Lakes Pastoral Conference.

Pastor Jeffrey Bonack – 414-422-0320, Ext. 119

Pastor Jeffrey Bonack

Pastor Bonack has served St. Paul’s since 1996. As the primary worship and music planner, he oversees and works with the Worship Team and all choral groups and instrumental ensembles.

A gifted linguist, Pastor Bonack also teaches Spanish to students in grades six through eight at St. Paul’s elementary school.

Pastor Bonack is the primary confirmation class instructor, and enjoys pre-marital and other relationship counseling. We invite you to check out the variety of counseling services offered at St. Paul’s — those which Pastor Bonack is deeply committed to and those our other pastors spearhead.

School Administrator Seth Fitzsimmons – 414.422.0320 Ext. 118


Seth Fitzsimmons

We are very excited to join St. Paul’s! Carrie and I have been blessed to be married for almost 12 years – in that time the Lord has blessed us with Marcus (5th grade), Molly (4th), Hannah (1st), and Caleb (K). Here is a little info about me, Carrie, and our family.

I grew up near Watertown, WI, in the small town of Hustisford where many of my cousins still live. My dad (Bernie) has worked in construction with two of his seven brothers for over 35 years since serving in the Army. My mom (Cindy) has worked as a cook at Hustisford High School for over 35 years. I have one sister (Sadie Jo) who is four years older than I am. She lives in Houston, TX, with her husband (Steve) and four children. Steve is a principal at one of our WELS schools in the Houston area.

I was a “Bluejay” at Bethany Lutheran School and then graduated from Luther Prep in 2000. I attended MLC for two years in the pastor track. In 2002, I transferred to WLC where I completed my education degree in 2005. I served for one year teaching 7th grade at Hope Christian School in Milwaukee (now Hope Prima). Mark Sievert was my vice-principal. I then accepted the call to serve as upper grades teacher in Norfolk, Nebraska, in June 2006. I served as teacher for two years before accepting the call to serve as principal in 2008 when our principal took a call to Waukesha. It has been an amazing story that has unfolded since 2008, one that I will treasure forever as a gift from God both personally and as a family.

Carrie has worked as an RN since graduating from Concordia Univ. (Mequon) in 2003. She’s worked in orthopedics, OB, the ER, and as a nurse practitioner after earning her masters in 2014. She’s one talented cookie!

I greatly look forward to leading the school’s ministry as we seek to put our Lutheran elementary school up on the lampstand in Muskego because of the gospel of Jesus which we have as a treasure for all our congregation and community to see and enjoy!

Seth Fitzsimmons Verse1

Business Administrator Dan Lippert – 414.422.0320 Ext. 120

Dan Lippert

Dan serves as the Business Administrator for St. Paul’s. In this role he manages all the business and financial aspects of our congregation, overseeing the church administration team, properties manager and technology coordinator.

Dan joined St. Paul’s in April of 2011 after serving three years as Operations Administrator for Christian Life Resources. Prior to that he owned and ran Lippert Corporation, a family manufacturing business.

Music is a passion for Dan and you will often find him playing drums with the contemporary worship band, brass and orchestra ensembles at St Paul’s.

Community Outreach Coordinator Sally Wallner – 414.422.0320, Ext. 294

Sally Wallner

As the Community Outreach Coordinator, Sally serves as our campus hostess and the personality of St. Paul’s to the Muskego community. She works closely with the Welcome Team on Sundays to assure guests receive a positive, friendly worship experience.

Deep involvement in community organizations enables her to stay informed of community needs and how St. Paul’s might rise up to meet those needs. She partners with the Outreach Team to design outreach events on and off campus, and is always seeking ways to grow relationships.

Sally grew up in Janesville and moved to Milwaukee in 1984. She studied Interior Design, Hospitality and Customer Service. In a surprising twist of life events, God opened up the door for her to pursue outreach efforts at St. Paul’s and she was brought on staff in March of 2010.

Sally describes herself as loving Jesus and loving people. Being able to use these attributes to grow God’s Kingdom is a great blessing for her.

Director of Member Engagement – Youth and Adult Ministries, Dr. Joel Nelson– 414.422.0320, Ext. 145


Dr. Joel Nelson

Dr. Joel Nelson serves as Director of Member Engagement and is tasked with developing strategies and processes to engage members of all ages in the overall mission and ministry of the congregation. He provides oversight and direction to small groups, monitors member volunteerism, and supports adult and youth spiritual growth, youth ministries, and leadership training.

Dr. Nelson has been a teacher, principal, staff minister, and synodical administrator. He has served ethnically and numerically diverse congregations in Chicago-IL, Santa Barbara-CA, Milwaukee-WI, and Muskego, WI. He has a B.S. in Education, an M.S. in Family Studies, and an Ed.D. in Leadership.

Dr. Nelson says, “I enjoy settings and situations where improvement and ‘raising the bar’ are desired and then achieved. I love to organize, develop, improve communication, grow commitment, instill confidence, increase the capacity of others, energize and involve stake-holders, and creatively solve problems. I am an INTRAPRENEUR rather than an entrepreneur–a person who works within an organization (intra) to help it improve where possible, change where needed, but flourish in the end.”