Congregation Council

Our congregation council is the governing body of St. Luke Lutheran Church between congregational meetings. 

It is comprised of members dedicated to the ministry and mission of our congregation.

The Congregation Council functions to oversee the life and activities of St. Luke Lutheran Church and to ensure that these reflect the purpose and faith of this church. The council consists of the three elected officers of the congregation (President, Vice-President and Treasurer), six counselors who serve as liaisons to the Purpose and Support Teams, a Council Secretary, and the Pastors.

Congregation Council Members' Responsibilities: Attend monthly Council Meetings, special Council meetings, regular and special meetings of the congregation. Care for and pray for the work of Christ in the Congregation, the community, and the whole world. Help assure the coordination of all the programs and ministries of St. Luke Lutheran Church. Participate in the development and management of long-range planning and the annual budget adopted by the Congregation.


    Congregation President

    Marty and his wife Pat have been members of St. Luke since 1972. During this time, he has served in numerous leadership positions, such as Property and Grounds chair; building committee chair for sanctuary renovations, Miles Hall/ Narthex renovation; Co-chair of Education Wing, Communion Deacon and usher. 

    Marty was raised on a dairy farm in Pennsylvania, attended and taught Sunday school in his home church and has eight living brothers and a sister. He is a retired naval officer having served 21 years in the submarine force and a semi-retired university professor in his 33 year at UConn. His degrees are in Mechanical Engineering. 

    Marty and Pat have been married since 1967 and traveled quite a bit while in the service. Their three children were all born in different states and confirmed at St. Luke. They have five granddaughters and one grandson all living on the east coast. 

    Marty enjoys gardening, woodworking and clock repair. 


    Vice President and Liaison to People Support Team

    John and his wife, Katherine, joined St. Luke in 2015 with their daughter, Camille. Their family has since grown to include their son, Harlan. They reside in Uncasville.

    John grew up in Gales Ferry and often rode his bike past St. Luke on his way to Ledyard Middle School. Originally a practicing Catholic, he joined a Lutheran church when he and his wife were wed in 2005. After their daughter was born 2012, John and Katherine sought a church that had a passionate congregation, impactful ministry, dedicated outreach, and most of all a welcoming atmosphere. This journey led them to St. Luke, a decision that has had such a positive impact on their whole family!

    John attended The University of Connecticut in Groton and Storrs, graduating with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Elementary Education. While there, he met his future wife on a blind date and they would marry during his Master’s year. Over the years, he has taught various grade levels and added additional certifications. He now teaches 8th Grade Social Studies at Griswold Middle School and also serves as Team Leader.

    In his spare time John is passionate about cooking and learning about international cuisines. One day he hopes to own a food truck to operate in the summers and maybe become his retirement career. He also loves attending musical theater with his wife and friends. He recently made his theatrical debut, extending his love of theater.

  • Mitch Robinson

    Treasurer and liaison to finance support team

    I have been a member of St. Luke since moving to New London in 2001. I received my undergraduate education as well as a Masters in Library Science from the State University College at Ganeseo. I received a Master of Arts in History from the University of New Hampshire and a Ph.D. from Cornell University. I served as Naval Supply Corps Officer for 7 years on active duty and 23 years in the Naval Reserve. I was employed as a Department of Defense Contract Specialist from 1990 until my retirement in 2015. I am currently employed as a Circulation Supervisor at Shain Library at Connecticut College. I have been a clergy spouse since 1984. My wife, Rev. Mary Robinson, is serving as Pastor of St. Mark Lutheran Church in Norwich, CT> I have served the church various ways, including teaching Bible Studies; serving as President of our local Lutheran Men in Mission group in New Jersey, serving as a delegate to the ELCA Church-wide Assembly in 1988; serving as the musician for Dinner Church at St. Luke and Morning Prayer at St. Mark; serving on the St. Luke Church Council, including two terms as Vice-President. I most recently was appointed as the Archivist for the New England Synod (ELCA).

  • Liese Zitzkat

    Council Secretary

    Liese is returning as Council Secretary, having served in the position several years ago. She has been a member of St. Luke for 21 years and has served in various roles, including Sunday School teacher and lay reader coordinator. As part of Adult Forum, she facilitated a study of Brian McLaren's book A New Kind of Christianity. She currently participates as a communion deacon, knits for the prayer shawl ministry, and occasionally plays the piano and sings in church.

    Liese has lived in Connecticut all her life. At age 15, she started teaching piano and voice privately and continued to do that for 20 years. She has sung in various choral groups and been a church organist. She earned her undergraduate degree in medical technology from St. Joseph College and worked in the laboratory at MidState Medical Center for 13 years before going back to school and earning her doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Hartford. She has a private practice in New Haven, where she works with individual therapy clients and performs disability evaluations for Social Security.

    Liese lives in Clinton with her husband of 20 years, David, their two teenagers, Tyler and Mikayla, and their spunky English pointer, Ava. Liese enjoys walking (she loves her fitbit), trying new cooking recipes, knitting, and traveling. Camp Calumet and Martha's Vineyard are favorite summer destinations.


    Councilor and Liaison to EVANGELISM tEAM

    Pam lives in Ledyard and joined St. Luke in fall, 2018, transferring from St. David’s Episcopal. She has been active in Southeast Emmaus since weekend #2. She did not attend church her early adult life, but eventually found her way to God in 2000. She was baptized and confirmed at St. David’s about 2004.

    Pam grew up in Groton and has lived in Southeast CT most of her life. She has a son who lives in Norwich with his family, and a daughter in Ohio with her family. She is affectionately known as Pamma to her grandkids and her ‘family of the heart.’

    Pam has worked for UConn Extension in 4-H Positive Youth Development for 24 years, in afterschool setting and currently as New London County 4-H Educational Outreach Coordinator. In addition to Emmaus and other church activities through the years, she is passionate about gardening, paper crafting, reading, decorating, and sparkly things. Pam and her husband of 7 years, Brian, love to travel in their RV named Matilda.

  • Pat Robbins

    Councilor and Liaison to fellowship team

    Pat Robbins has been a member of St. Luke since 1974, except for 4-5 years when she was out of the area for college. She married her husband John in 1982. They have 3 sons, Jeffrey, Aaron and Nathan who were raised and confirmed at St. Luke. Over the years, she has served in many capacities at St. Luke including Sunday School teacher, confirmation group leader, altar guild, Pastoral call committee, staff support, area shepherd, and Link for Camp Calumet in New Hampshire. Her family continues to vacation at Calumet annually.

    After college, Pat managed a retail fabrics store. While her children were small, Pat ran a tailoring and alterations shop. She returned to school in 2000 to complete a Masters in Elementary Education degree. She is currently teaching 2nd grade in her home town of Norwich. Her hobbies include gardening, cooking, knitting and walking her dog, Della.

  • [open position]

    Councilor AND liaison to FACILITIES team

    Details to come.

  • Leigh Sammons

    councilor AND liaison to Evangelism team

    I have been a member at St. Luke since its very beginning, over 55 years. My parents were founding members of St. Luke, so I've been around for awhile! Over the years, I've served in many ways - on various ministry teams, call committees, as a Sunday School teacher, coordinator for women's retreats, Thanksgiving Baskets, sock-tober, greeters, communion deacons, and other ministries.

    My husband, Jim, and I have 2 awesome children: our daughter, Emma, who is a student at Fordham University, and Andy, who will graduate high school this year.

    I am a proud UConn Husky, class of '84, with Master's Degrees from Eastern CT State University and Southern CT State University. I have been blessed with an amazing career as a teacher for over 30 years.

    I thank you and look forward to this new opportunity to serve our Lord and my St. Luke family.

  • Bill Kracke

    Councilor and Liaison to the outreach ministry Team

    Bill and his wife, Carolyn, live in Gales Ferry and are longtime members of St. Luke, having joined in the late '70s. They have two grown children who were confirmed at St. Luke: Bill and Amy. Bill (Sr.) has served on several committees and the Church Council, including President, Vice-President, and Treasurer. He is currently the Outreach Team Leader and leads our annual Outreach Meal Assembly Event. He has also served on the New England Synod Council for 6 years and on the Synod Finance Committee, the Synod Compensation Guidelines group, and the Synod Executive Committee.

    Bill has had several careers after college starting with the Navy, serving on two submarines. After he left active duty, he joined the Navy Reserve Intelligence Program, retiring from the Navy after another 15 years. Bill started his civilian career as a Navy contractor developing manuals and training materials for both submarine and surface ship commands.

    In the mid 90's, he began working for the pharmaceutical industry, performing statistical programming and analysis in support of new drug clinical trials. His final career change was a jump into retirement to which he has adapted very well. He and Carolyn have enjoyed going on cruises with friends and visiting friends and family. For the last year, he has been building a sea kayak that he hopes to complete this spring.


    Councilor and Liaison to the WORSHIP Team

    Brad was originally at St. Luke as a toddler and was baptized there in 1973.  He returned as an adult in 2002 and has been a member ever since, along with his wife of over 20 years Crystal and his three children Jessica, Logan, and Nathaniel.  All three children have been baptized, attended Sunday School, and played handbells at St. Luke.  Brad has been a member of the Celebrate Team since 2003 and served as the Worship Team lead since 2005.  This is his third stint on the council.


    Brad was born and grew up in Connecticut, moving back into the house he grew up in right before his first child was born.  He obtained his bachelor’s degree in business management from the University of Connecticut in 1991 and completed a Master’s degree program in cybersecurity through Western Governors University in 2019.  He has supported the U.S Navy professionally most of his adult life first as a contractor and then as a government employee.  After working at the Naval Submarine School in Groton for over 21 years, he moved on to the Naval Undersea Warfare Center in Newport, RI, in 2016, where he currently enjoys working with engineers and scientists in a cybersecurity specialist capacity.


    Along with being a cybersecurity advocate, Brad continues to enjoy following the Red Sox and Patriots along with his favorite music, ranging from rock and roll to contemporary Christian.  He also enjoys traveling with his family and spending time hiking in town and state parks.