Rev. Barbara J. Collins, Bishop
Bishop Barbara J. Collins is the third bishop of the Upper Susquehanna Synod, having been elected to a six-year term starting September 1, 2016. Bishop Collins was born in Johnstown, PA and grew up in Hollidaysburg, PA, the youngest child of The Rev. and Mrs. George E. Nein, Jr. She was a Music Education major at Penn State University and later received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bloomsburg University. She graduated from the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg, PA in 2001 and was ordained on March 23rd, 2002. B.J. served as pastor of the Follmer/St. John’s Parish, Potts Grove for over 10 years and as the Interim pastor of Zion Lutheran, Kratzerville. Before being elected as bishop, she served as the synod’s assistant to the bishop and director for evangelical mission. Bishop Collins and her husband John, who is an independent insurance agent and community musician, have two married children, a daughter and son, and four granddaughters.
Rev. Craig Miller, Assistant to the Bishop/Director for Evangelical Mission
Rev. Craig A. Miller began his work in October 2016 as Assistant to Bishop Barbara J. Collins and Director of Evangelical Mission. Pastor Miller comes to our synod from Brooklyn, New York, where he served at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church for 20 years. He graduated with an MDiv from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia in 1996 and was ordained in the same year on June 14. He holds a BS in Forestry from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry. From the beginning of his ministry, and even before ordination, Craig has been involved in the church and community through various avenues. While not a native of this area, Pastor Miller has family ties here: his mother grew up in Northumberland and he has aunts and cousins in Selinsgrove, Northumberland and Danville. His father, also a pastor, was born and raised in Kutztown but moved the family to Brooklyn when Craig was 6 years old. Pastor Miller’s wife, Nancy, received her Master’s in Social Work this spring and hopes to work as a counselor and therapist. Their daughter, CarolAnn, is a vocal performance major at Muhlenberg College.
Brenda Krouse, Office Manager
Brenda K. Krouse started her ministry with the synod as a volunteer in 1989 and became a part-time staff person in 2000. In January 2012, she began serving as Office Manager. Brenda is a graduate of Selinsgrove High School, business curriculum; and she has earned certificates for completion of office/business courses at the SUN Area Technical School, as well as having participated in church secretary educational events. She brings a wide variety of church experiences and knowledge to this position. Brenda has always been involved in her local congregation and has served in many areas of ministry there (youth, Sunday school teacher, worship and music, Bible study, etc.). She also served her congregation for many years as treasurer and worship assistant coordinator. Brenda is the mother of one son and thoroughly enjoys spending time with him, her family, and her friends.
Chad Hershberger, Director of Communications
Chad Hershberger serves as the part-time Director of Communications for the synod. He works with the synod staff on communications pieces, including: the monthly electronic and print newsletter, USS Ark; the rostered leader publication, Headwaters; and the synod’s website. He also serves as the liaison between the synod and the local media, providing news releases and answering requests for interviews. Chad serves full-time as the executive director of Camp Mount Luther, Mifflinburg, the outdoor ministry site of the Upper Susquehanna, and is the contracted webmaster for Lutheran Outdoor Ministries. He is a graduate of Penn State University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism and a graduate of the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg with a Master of Arts Degree in Religion. He and his wife, Sarah, reside in Mifflinburg with their two children.