Jason Simon – President
Jason Simon is the Executive Director of the Evangelical Catholic. He holds a Master of Divinity from the University of Notre Dame and has over fifteen years of experience working in parish and campus ministry. Since joining the Evangelical Catholic he has worked closely with staff and student leaders from over 100 Catholic ministries, helping them to become dynamic centers of evangelization in their communities. Jason has also served on the Executive Board of Directors for the Catholic Campus Ministry Association. He lives in Madison, Wisconsin with his wife and six children.
Andrew Ochalek – Vice President of Operations
Andrew Ochalek's first encountered the Evangelical Catholic in 2014 as a parishioner at an Alliance parish, participating in and leading various small groups. He gained ministry experience as a volunteer Catholic Youth Minister from 2011 to 2014, serving the military community in Pensacola, FL and Okinawa, Japan. After graduating from the United States Naval Academy in 2010, with a Bachelor of Science in General Engineering, Andrew commissioned into the United States Marine Corps where he served as an Officer for six years. Before joining the EC in the Summer of 2016, Andrew worked in Leadership Consulting, developing leadership solutions for global Fortune 500 companies across various industries. He currently manages internal teams and external contracts to successfully deliver agreements on time and within budget. Andrew lives in Madison, WI with his wife, Maria.
Dave Chodorowski – Vice President of Mission Advancement
James Carrano – Senior Mission Advancement Officer
James Carrano directs the mission advancement of the Evangelical Catholic. He served as a campus minister at the University of Wisconsin-Madison for a decade before joining the Evangelical Catholic. As a campus minister James led various successful outreach initiatives. With expertise in small group outreach and discipleship development, he has assisted parishes and campus ministries nationwide to launch vibrant, fruitful and self-sustaining evangelistic ministries. He holds a Master in Music and a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin, and lives in Madison, Wisconsin with his wife, Jessica, and their six children.
Peter Andrastek – Senior Ministry Consultant
Peter leads the parish mission of the Evangelical Catholic. He holds a Master of Theological Studies in Pastoral Theology from Ave Maria University. He has worked in adult formation in the Church since 2003. His experience includes preaching retreats, teaching theology and adult catechesis courses, and giving presentations and trainings for numerous parishes, dioceses, movements, and institutions in the Church. He currently advises over 30 EC Parish and Diocesan Alliances and Associates nationwide. He lives in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin with his wife and seven children.
Andre Lesperance – Senior Ministry Consultant
Andre Lesperance has been involved in EC formation and leadership since 1999. He led the EC ministries at the University of Wisconsin Catholic Student Center for four years before obtaining his Master of Arts in Theology from Marquette University. Since then, Andre has worked in both parish ministry and in Catholic secondary education (Marquette University High School), in addition to serving on the adjunct faculty at the Saint Clare Center for Catholic Life at Cardinal Stritch University. His EC work includes parish alliances, training events for affiliate parishes and dioceses, and assisting in writing new materials. Andre lives in Greendale, Wisconsin with his wife Jackie and their four children.
Mark Rose – Ministry Consultant
Mark was introduced to The Evangelical Catholic in 2004 during his undergraduate studies at UW-Madison, where he became involved in campus ministry efforts using EC methods extensively. After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy in 2006, Mark worked in sales and management but ultimately felt the call back to ministry through an evangelization team called Spiritus. In June 2013, he began working for the EC equipping campus ministry staff and student leaders to build vibrant and sustainable communities focused on discipleship development and reaching the lost. He received his Master of Arts in Theology from the University of Notre Dame in 2017, and now lives in Madison with his wife, Julie, and his son, Timothy.
Kendra McClelland – Ministry Consultant
Kendra is a Southern California native. She received her Master of Divinity from the Franciscan School of Theology in Oceanside, CA, and brings a professional background in corporate leadership consulting from her role as a Marketing and Project Manager for Blueprint Leadership. She also served as Director for Wonderfully Made, a women’s college ministry at Santa Clara University, for six years. Her ministerial experience includes working with parishes and campus ministries, coordinating training workshops and conferences, speaking at major events and retreats, and forming lay leaders through intentional discipleship.She initially connected with the EC through a small group at St. Brigid’s Parish in San Diego, CA.
Joshua Dart – Ministry Consultant
Josh Dart holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Masters of Arts in Theology from the Augustine Institute in Denver. After working simultaneously for several years as both a Project Manager and Youth Minister, he resigned from engineering to be fully devoted to the Church’s evangelization efforts. Josh served as the Director of Catholic Campus Ministry at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), and has co-led and participated in over a dozen international missions in Central America, Australia, and Africa. He was introduced to the Evangelical Catholic through Evangelization Training Camps, fully implementing the EC vision when VCU became one of the university ministries in the Diocese of Richmond EC Alliance. This bore great fruit both in the campus ministry and his personal life. As an EC Ministry Consultant, Josh trains campus ministries to be the best at reaching the lost with the love of Jesus. He lives in Madison, Wisconsin with his wife and their children.
Andrea Jackson – Ministry Consultant
Andrea first experienced the ministry of The Evangelical Catholic as a member of an evangelization small group at Harvard University where she studied English Language and Literature. She trained as a missionary through the EC's Campus Ministry Training Program after college. After two years of equipping student leaders for evangelization on campus, she pursued her Master of Divinity from Boston College in Chestnut Hill, MA. Her primary ministerial experience is in the parish context in the Archdiocese of Boston where she was a pastoral associate and EC Reach More™ point person for four years. In 2018 Andrea and her husband moved from Massachusetts to Waukesha, WI to allow her to work more fully with the EC as a Parish Ministry Consultant.
Julie Rose – Ministry Specialist
Julie earned B.A. in Humanities and Spanish from Florida State University and an M.A. in Theology from the University of Notre Dame. Through the Catholic Extension Society's Young Adult Leadership Initiative, Julie interned full time in campus ministry serving Old Dominion University in Norfollk, Virginia while studying. Later when she became Director of Campus Ministry at ODU, Julie worked closely with the EC as one of the campus ministries in the EC Alliance with the Diocese of Richmond Alliance. The fruits of that work at ODU inspired her to join the Evangelical Catholic in the summer of 2015.
Cody LeClaire – Ministry Specialist
Cody was trained as a student by the EC, beginning in 2008, and helped start evangelization small groups on campus at Iowa State University. After graduation he spent two years learning the ins and outs of EC ministry and methodology as a missionary and three further years serving as a Ministry Associate. He lives in Madison, WI with his wife Nicole and two sons.
Emily Mansfield – Ministry Associate
Emily joined the Evangelical Catholic as a Ministry Associate in June 2018. She graduated from Indiana University with a Bachelor of Music in violin performance. While at IU, she encountered the EC through involvement in the Catholic campus ministry. She served as a full-time missionary on campus after graduation, supporting the culture of evangelization small groups and discipleship mentoring. She still plays violin for fun and also enjoys running.
Austin Franke – Media Specialist
Austin graduated in 2012 from the University of Central Arkansas with a degree in Digital Filmmaking. Soon after graduation, Austin joined the Evangelical Catholic as a Missionary in the Campus Ministry Training Program. He completed the program and began working full-time spreading awareness of the EC through media, as well as traveling to campuses in order to equip them for growth in outreach and evangelization.
Katelin Cummins – Writer / Editor
Katelin Cummins earned a B.A. from Beloit College in 2007. As a recent graduate, she used EC training and materials to lead Catholic small groups in Beloit and Madison. In 2008 she joined the EC staff as Office Manager and has enjoyed serving the EC’s administrative needs and mission of evangelization ever since. She currently lives in Madison, WI with her husband.
Cathy Rakers – Coordinator of Operations
Cathy Rakers joined the Evangelical Catholic in the summer of 2015. She brought with her over 30 years of business experience focused in operations and client relations. After earning her bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a concentration in Business from St. Norbert College, De Pere, WI, she landed an opportunity at the IBM Corporation where she earned multiple promotions within account administration and operations management. She left her position as Customer Operations Manager to start her family and pursue her new career as an at-home mom. As her life allowed, Cathy has worked part-time for the past 21 years in the areas of professional and leadership development, process improvement, client satisfaction, and serving her children’s Catholic school and her parish. She is thankful for the opportunity to combine her passion for Jesus Christ and His Church, with her professional experience. Cathy and her husband have two grown children.
Tom Wierschem – Business Specialist
After a 35 year career in Banking in Minnesota and Wisconsin, including 16 years as CEO/President of multiple community banks, Tom had the calling to contribute to an organization that spreads the Good News. A lifelong Catholic, he has served on multiple Parish and Finance Councils for his local parishes, as well as Long Range Planning, Stewardship, and RCIA Committees. Tom earned his M.B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and his B.S. in Social Studies from the University of Minnesota. He currently resides in the Madison area with his wife. His three children and five grandchildren also reside in the area.
Luke Gondeck – Accountant
Luke earned a B.B.A. in accounting from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater in 2005 and Master’s degree in 2006. Luke has 10 plus years of accounting experience and is a licensed CPA. He previously worked for Gorman & Company, a developer and property management company. Luke brings to the EC his love of analyzing data and accounting skills. He joined the EC in 2018 and he continues his journey to strengthen his faith. He lives with his wife and 3 children in Black Earth, WI.
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Board of Directors
- Lisa Zasada, President
Engineering Business Manager, General Mills
- Geoff Gasperini, Vice-President
Senior Counsel, Dominion Energy
- Lyle Landowski, Member
Partner, Colliers International
- Fr. Randy Timmerman, Member
Pastor of St. Dennis
- Ben Buss, Member
Digital Experience Delivery Director, American Family Insurance
- Paul Miller, Member
Partner, Graphic Systems
Green Bay, WI
- Paul Hager, Member
President and CEO, Information Technology Professionals
- Elizabeth Ann Johnson MD, Member
Mother of five
St. Paul, MN
- Carrie Miller, Member
Green Bay, WI
- Dan Zellner, Treasurer
Chief Financial Officer, LZ Management Company, LLC
- The Most Reverend David Ricken
Diocese of Green Bay
- The Most Reverend Donald Hying
Diocese of Gary
- The Most Reverend Robert Barron
Archdiocese of Los Angeles
- The Reverend Monsignor Steve Callahan
Diocese of San Diego