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Jeff Hinds

Senior Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683

Jeff has served as the Senior Pastor at Highland since 2002. His education includes Houghton College, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, and Dallas Theological Seminary where he earned a doctorate.  Jeff is happily married to his college sweetheart, Betty Ann. Together they are blessed with four adult children, a son-in-law, and a precious granddaughter.  Jeff loves spending time with family, golfing, and anything granddaughter related.  

Wausau Campus

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Dave Mahler

Wausau Campus Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1106

Dave Mahler is the Campus Pastor at our Wausau Campus.  He joined our staff in May of 2006.  Dave works in areas of counseling, teaching, custodial staff management, and visitation.  He is married and has 5 children and 11 grandchildren.

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Isaiah DeMoss

Equipping Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1112

Isaiah came to Highland in 2017 from a small town in Northwest Indiana. He and his wife, Amy have been married for 15 years and have three energetic boys. Isaiah is a graduate of Newburgh Bible College with a Master's Degree in Theology.  He has a passion for leading people to become fully devoted followers of Jesus. His hobbies and passions include the Chicago Bears, anything Christmas, and collecting vinyl records.

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Janna Janke

Connections Director

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1109

Janna and her husband have lived in the Wausau area their entire married lives, and have a love for the community.  They enjoy spending as much time as possible with their adult children and their spouses, along with their six grandchildren.  Janna's hobbies include being active in the outdoors and anything family related.  

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Ryan Bare

Visitation and Traditions Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683

Ryan grew up in Central Illinois, where he spent a decade in pastoral ministry before joining the Highland staff in 2019.  He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Pastoral Studies from Northland Baptist Bible College, and a Master's Degree in Biblical Studies from Maranatha Baptist Seminary.  His hobbies include the Packers, playing frisbee golf, hiking, and reading.  

Weston Campus

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Dan MacDonald

Weston Campus Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1200

Dan and his wife, Sue, began attending Highland in 1994.  In 2003, Dan joined the Highland staff and serves as the Weston Campus Pastor.  He received his education at Covenant College, and Westminster Theological Seminary.  Dan and Sue have three adult sons.  His hobbies include spending time with family, camping, biking, and being a loyal member of Red Sox Nation!  

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Andrew Gutberlet

Discipleship/Equipping Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1113

Andrew joined Highland in 2017 and serves as the Discipleship/Equipping Pastor.  He is involved with Missions, Young Adults, as well as preaching and teaching.   He received his undergraduate degree from Cedarville University and is currently furthering his education at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.  Andrew and his wife, Megan, love traveling and experiencing new cultures, playing a good board game, and conversing with friends over a cup of coffee.

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Maggie Brayton

Weston Children's Director


Maggie and her husband Rob came to Highland in 2013. As a devoted mother of 4, she began volunteering in children's ministry shortly thereafter. Maggie's gifts in structure, planning, compassion, giving, and helping others were well suited to working with children. She joined the staff in mid 2019 helping to further strengthen the team at the Weston campus.

Marathon Campus

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Brian Whitaker

Marathon Campus Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1300

Pastor Brian served as Highland's Worship Pastor from 2003 to 2010, and returned to the Highland Staff in 2013, where he serves as the Marathon Campus Pastor.  He earned his Master of Divinity from Trinity in 1996, and was subsequently ordained in the Evangelical Free Church of America.  Brian is a musician, author, and blogger.

Merrill Campus

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Dan Shields

Worship/Youth Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1400

Dan was born and raised in the Northwoods of Eagle River, Wisconsin and joined the Highland staff in 2019 where he serves as the Worship/Youth Pastor at our Merrill Campus.  He earned a Bachelor's Degree in Youth Ministry from Crown College.  He and his wife, Laura, have two beautiful daughters; their favorite thing is spending time together making fun memories.  When Dan has free time, he enjoys playing soccer, disc golf, or ultimate frisbee.

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Adam DeBroux

Discipleship/Children's Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1401

Adam grew up in the Merrill community and started serving as the Discipleship/Children's Pastor at Highland's Merrill Campus in 2019.  He received his Master of Divinity from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and is passionate about discipling, teaching, and leading people into a deeper love for Jesus.  Adam enjoys spending time with family, camping, riding his ATV, and watching the Packers.

Children's Ministry

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Jessica Leptien

children's ministry Director

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1121

Jessica joined the staff at Highland as the Co-Director of Children's Ministry in 2019.  She graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Bible.  In 2015, Jessica began attending Highland as a volunteer in Children's Ministry.  She and her husband, Ron, continue to serve in various ways at Highland. As the daughter of a pastor in the Wausau area, Jessica has been exposed to ministry her entire life, and has loved serving children while on mission trips to the Philippines and Bermuda. She has a heart for Highland and a passion for people.

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Kirstin Bare

children's ministry director

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1117

Kirstin grew up in Wausau, and joined Highland's staff in 2014 where she serves as the Co-Director of Children's Ministry.  She has a Bachelor's Degree in Bible and Elementary Education from Faith Baptist Bible College.  Kirstin also holds a ministry license with the EFCA.   Prior to joining Highland's staff, she taught elementary students for 13 years, both locally and abroad in South Korea and China.  Kirstin is newly married to Ryan, and enjoys spending time serving the Lord with him. 


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Ted Hahn

Facility Director

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1125

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Andy Blake

Wausau and Marathon Caretaker


Randy Schultz

Wausau Caretaker


Fred Veenstra




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Jolene Fenwick


Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1104

Jolene has worked in non-profit management, first in California and then in Wisconsin, since graduating from UW River Falls.  She has been on staff as the Administrator since the early years of Highland, where she oversees multiple areas including  communication, finance, and facility coordination of the campuses. Jolene and her husband have four grown children.  Volunteering in a variety of community groups, as well as running a local horse stable, are two of the things she enjoys most during her off time.

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Linda Aldrich

Administrative Associate

Office: 715-842-5683

Linda has been on staff as the Administrative Associate at the Wausau Campus since 2012.  She is blessed with a close-knit, and loving, family that includes her husband, adult children, their spouses,  and very precious grandchildren. Her passion is worshiping the Lord. She also loves to golf.

Cheryl Hopson

Administrative Associate

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1102

Cheryl joined the Highland staff in 2019 as an Administrative Associate.  She is married to her high school sweetheart, Gary  “the trumpet guy”.  After many moves, in seven different states, they have happily settled in Wausau. She enjoys spending time with her five grandchildren, doing projects, and reading, and looks forward to seeing what God has planned for her at Highland.

Women's Ministry

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Sue MacDonald

women's director

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1115

 Sue joined the staff as the Women's Ministry Director in June of 2017, after attending Highland with her husband, Dan, since 1994.  Together, they have three grown sons. Sue received her education at Hope College.   She grew up in Waupun, Wisconsin, and now, as an adult, enjoys time camping, riding bike, and going for walks with her family.

Worship Ministry

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Jeff Weiss

Worship Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1107

Pastor Jeff Weiss has been serving as the Worship Pastor at Highland since 2010, where he oversees the areas of worship, music, and creative arts.  Jeff holds a Bachelor of Music Degree from UW Oshkosh.  He is married to Billie and they have three young children.  He enjoys spending time with his family and friends, visiting state parks (especially Door County), and is an avid Green Bay Packers fan.  

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Rachael Franck

Multi-media Coordinator

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1120

Rachael joined the Highland staff in 2016.  She grew up in the Wausau area and graduated from UW Stevens Point with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Communication emphasizing in Media Studies and Video Production.  Rachael has a desire to glorify God by helping to make videos that show how He changes lives.  In her spare time, Rachael enjoys spending time with her nephew, playing board games with friends, and watching/playing sports.

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Bryan Niemeyer

Worship Leader


Bryan has been serving in the Worship and Youth Ministry at Highland since 1998, and  joined the staff in 2013.  Bryan is a Fifth Grade Elementary School Teacher with a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Minnesota and a Master’s Degree of Education from Marion College. He loves worship and is passionate about wanting the body of Christ to understand and engage in a true life of worship.  Music, coffee, the smell of a good book (and reading it as well), skiing, and cooking the most amazing food from all over the world are a few of his hobbies.

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Brennan OConnell

Technical Arts Director

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1122

Brennan has attended Highland for most of his life and has volunteered and worked part time in Worship and Facilities since his early teen years.  He came on staff full time in 2018 as the Facility Director, and in the fall of 2019 transferred into his new role as Technical Arts Director.  Brennan married his wife, Nicole, in 2017 and they enjoy their dog, Luna. Brennan and Nicole enjoy music, board games, and walking their dog.

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Joe Aldrich

Worship Ministries Coordinator

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1123

Joe began serving at Highland as the Worship Ministry Coordinator in 2019. He has an IT Programmer/Analyst Associate Degree from Northcentral Technical College as well as a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics (with a Business Administration minor) from UW Green Bay. Joe likes learning new technologies and leveraging them to solve problems and optimize solutions. He has a passion for music and worship, and enjoys golfing.

Young Adult's Ministry

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Sam DeLoye

Young Adults Pastor

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1119

Sam joined the team at Highland in 2017 and serves as the Young Adults Pastor.  He graduated from Cedarville University and is currently pursuing a Masters of Divinity from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.  Sam married his wife, Hannah, in 2018.  Together, they enjoy skiing, board games, and spending time with family.

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Amy DeMoss

Young Adults Administrative Associate

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1124

Amy joined the staff at Highland as the Young Adults Administrative Associate in 2019.  She relocated  to Wausau from Indiana, along with her family in 2017.   Amy is married to her high school sweetheart, Isaiah.   She enjoys biking, hiking, reading, and spending time outdoors with her family.   

Youth Ministry

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Jarrod Stichter

Pastor of Student Ministries

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1108

Pastor Jarrod has been serving at Highland since September, 2016 as the Pastor of Student Ministries.  Jarrod received his Bachelors Degree in Biblical Studies from Trinity International University, as well as a Masters of Arts in Christian Ministry from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary.  He married his high school sweetheart in February, 2011, has a beautiful daughter, and two spunky miniature dachshunds.  Jarrod loves the Chicago Cubs, backyard BBQ's, hunting/fishing, and spending quality time with his family.  He is passionate about pouring into teens and helping them become life long disciples of Jesus that make disciples. 

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Trudy Morice

Student Ministries Director (part-time)

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1110

Trudy has worked in youth ministry for over ten years and joined the staff at Highland in 2012 as the Student Ministries Director.  Trudy grew up in the Wausau area and is married to her high school sweetheart, Tony.  They have two biological children along with one practically adopted and loved daughter.  As a family they enjoy anything active but specifically downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, biking, hiking, snowshoeing, taking walks, and going to the family cottage.

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Sarah Names

Youth Ministries Assistant (part-time)

Office: 715-842-5683 ext. 1103

Sarah has served at Highland in Student Ministries since 2013 and joined the staff as the Youth Ministries Assistant in 2016.  She grew up in Brookfield, Wisconsin where she married her high school sweetheart.  They have been blessed with 4 children.  Sarah's hobbies include spending time with family, gardening, baking and cooking, and taking walks.