Reverend Dr. David Kohls

As I return to Ebenezer and St John, I return filling a hugely different role as an Intentional Interim Pastor, a role in which I have received some additional and specialized training. As an Intentional Interim Pastor, my time will be limited; however, in this time I fully expect it to be filled with much activity and new learning. For those who remember me from my last time present, you may recall that I have a tendency to think outside the box and am unafraid to take calculated risks. As the church is ever changing, how do we plan to meet those changes & challenges, do meaningful ministry, and expand the church?


Other tidbits about me: As a chaplain and pastor, I love stories; both hearing them and telling them. I’ve even been known to engage in a fish story or two. I’m a bit of a Star-Trek fan. The gadgets and tools used in Star Trek, which were once thought of as Sci-Fi are real in today’s world. I love to sit on the shoreline of a lake and fish, especially if my grandkids are with me. I’m also a bit of an amateur woodworker and general tinkerer.


Hopefully, this provides a starting point for anyone who wants to know more about me and wants to engage in conversation, with maybe a story or two.

The essentials:

  • Born in Kaukauna, Wisconsin | Graduated from Kaukauna High School
  • Attended the UW Fox Valley, UW Extension, George Williams College, UW Oshkosh
  • Graduated Excelsior College of New York, BS General Studies
  • Served in various Industrial, Manufacturing. and Quality Engineering, and Operational Management positions for about 30 years.
  • Graduated Ashford University 2010, Master’s Degree in Business Administration
  • Graduated Liberty University 2014, Master of Divinity Degree
  • Additional course work, Liberty University 2015, Master of Theology program


  • Graduated Agape Seminary 2017, Doctor of Divinity Degree
  • First Ordained into the Independent Old Catholic Church 2013
  • Served Shepherd of the River Lutheran Church 2013-2015
  • Completed two units of Clinical Pastoral Education, 2019-2021
  • Served as a Hospital and Hospice Chaplain 2020-2023
  • Served St. John UCC, New Holstein and Ebenezer UCC, Chilton
  • Sabbatical Supply Pastor (UCC Licensed), 2022-2023
  • Served First Congregational DePere, UCC as a Designated Interim (UCC Licensed), 2023
  • Ordained into the United Church of Christ, Northeast Association of the Wisconsin Conference, 2023
  • Served Hope UCC, Fremont, as an Intentional Interim Pastor, 2023-2024

Elaine Hessil

Elaine is the organist at Ebenezer. She retired in 1995 from 37 years of teaching elementary students in rural Fond du Lac County, Two Rivers, Menasha, Cudahy, and Fond du Lac School District. The longest tenure was 27 years in Fond du Lac. She had been involved in church music for most of that time and played piano. Most of her formal keyboard lessons were on the accordion. However, she involved with organ, piano, and choral aspects at her my home church, St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, Malone.

She is delighted to play the organ, participate in the bell choir, and be involved in Ebenezer’s general music program.

Outside of music, she enjoys spending time with family, gardening, giving piano lessons, doing school tours at Heritage Orchard, and being a best ‘pal’ with her sheltie rescue dog, Sasha.

Elaine can be reached at 920-849-4369.

Don Pingel

Hi! I’m Don Pingel, the inside janitor and grounds keeper. I am married to Donna, and we have three adult children and two granddaughters and two grandsons. I like to sing special music for Sunday worship service.

Mary Keran

Mary is the administrative assistant for Ebenezer and St. John. She is a recent transplant to the area from Louisiana, where she obtained a degree in theology with an emphasis in communication. Being in Wisconsin has provided greater proximity to family, including cousins and a new little niece. While the winters have been something of a shock, she’s grateful to be north of hurricane territory. She enjoys photography, gardening, and playing the harp.