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MEF Fiscal Wellness Advocates and Grants Board

Significant, appropriately-gifted, responsible lay leadership. Our Lutheran tradition raises up the priesthood of all believers and acknowledges the holiness of the vocations of the people of God, no matter what walk of life. 3E has flourished all the more by identifying, recruiting, and supporting gifted laypersons in every aspect of this work, from primary leadership to on-the-ground engagement.

Fiscal Wellness Advocates 

The main role of a Fiscal Wellness Advocate is to walk alongside the rostered minister or candidate who is applying for a MEF grant.  The advocate will hold deep-dive conversations with the applicant to fully understand the financial challenge/s they face and guide them to the appropriate grant to apply for based on the need.  The advocates sign a Confidentiality Statement upfront and are trained on the overall MEF grant process, relevant questions to ask, recommended financial education opportunities, etc.  At the conclusion of conversations with an applicant, the advocate provides a written summary which accompanies the grant application. This material helps to round out the financial narrative shared on the application.  Currently five individuals, all laity, compose the Fiscal Wellness Advocate team.

These are the current Fiscal Wellness Advocates positioned around the Rocky Mountain Synod:

  • Don Lindsey, Las Cruces NM;
  • Louie Smith, Colorado Springs CO;
  • Margie Smith, Colorado Springs CO;
  • Matt Hall, Golden CO;
  • Roger Johnson, Golden CO

Fiscal Wellness Grants Board 

The main role of the Fiscal Wellness Grants Board is to review and decide on applications for grants.  The board comprises five members, is required to meet quarterly, but will more often when required based on the number of grant applications received.  Grant packets (applications & summaries) are distributed to the board a week prior to ensure efficient decision-making.  Reviews are held over a Zoom video conference utilizing the synod’s account.  A standing guideline with the board is that there needs to be at least three supporting votes for a grant to be awarded.  Following review of all applications, the Associate Program Director for MEF sends an award letter to recipients and generates the associated check request for the 3E Bookkeeper.  The board, as required in 3E founding documents, contains three rostered ministers and two laity.

Persons Currently Serving on Grants Board:

  • Pr. Debra Jimenez, Hobbs NM;
  • Pr. Nathan Keith, Laramie WY;
  • Pr. Asher O'Callaghan, Denver CO;
  • Sandy Ohlson, LaSalle CO;
  • Marti Weber, Salt Lake City UT

Julie Nelson is the Associate Program Director for the Ministerial Excellence Fund. 

To express interest in being an advocate, please contact her at