Pastor – Kristin Gorton
Kris has multiple connections to the United Church of Christ at the local, state, and national level. Kris grew up in and was confirmed at Plymouth UCC in Dodgeville, and was a member of the McFarland UCC for over 20 years. She attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and obtained a BA in Communication Arts and a MS in Communicative Disorders. She worked at the Waisman Center as a speech and language pathologist. Participating in the Wisconsin Conference UCC’s Lay Academy program, Kris began delving into the ways in which God was leading her to serve the church. In May of 2017, Kris completed her Masters of Divinity studies through the Chicago Theological Seminary (CTS).
Kris is interested in exploring the intersections between spirituality and social advocacy. She is a founding member of the UCC’s Economic Justice Movement, participates on the Stewardship Commission of the Wisconsin Council of Churches, and is a Board member with the Interfaith Coalition for Worker Justice. She and her husband Steve are both from Dodgeville and have been married for over 30 years. They have two adult children, Nicole (and Josh) Woodstock and Joshua Gorton, and 2 granddaughters. Together, Kris and Steve enjoy biking, hiking, and traveling.
Director of Faith Development – Rebecca Malke
Rebecca was director of religious education at the Prairie Unitarian Universalist Society for eight years before joining Memorial in July of 2014. She grew up in northeastern Wisconsin, then attended college at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire where she earned a BA in comparative studies in world religion with a secondary focus on journalism. After graduation, she went to India to teach English, art and journalism at the People’s Action for Rural Awakening program at the Don Bosco School. While in India, Rebecca got to know a young man named Verra Raju Eliganti, who was helping former child laborers get registered at the school. They’ve now been married for about 10 years and have two children – Indy and Kiran.
Director of Music – Jonathan Schroerlucke
Jonathan brings to Memorial a broad musical background. He has experience directing choirs. He has familiarity with a wide range of instruments and is proficient with piano, guitar, bass and other instruments. He teaches voice and guitar and he sings in the chorus with the Milwaukee Florentine Opera. He also composes and arranges music. His primary job is as the Marketing Manager for Madison Opera.
He graduated from Verona High, then went to North Central College, a Methodist college in Naperville, Ill., where he earned a bachelor’s degree in music in 2009 and received the Outstanding Music Student Award there. While in college, he was the student director of the choir and he spent a semester abroad studying music in Tunisia and Turkey. During the summers, he worked at a summer camp program through the college, teaching music to children. And he was involved in the music program at a local church in Naperville as an assistant to the music director.
He is married to Solveig (Smithback) and they have a daughter.