The Reverend Canon Lou Blanchard
The Reverend Canon Lou Blanchard is currently serving as Interim Rector. Lou is a native Coloradoan, growing up in Longmont, ordained in 1991 and serving St. Ambrose in Boulder, St. Luke's in Ft. Collins, and Christ the King in Arvada before being called as Canon Missioner on Bishop O'Neill's staff in 2005. As Canon Missioner, Lou was responsible for developing leaders in the 107 congregations across the state as well as overseeing clergy transitions in congregations. Lou retired from the Office of the Bishop last year and is pleased to be at Ascension part time during this important time of transition.
Sue Richardson, Youth Director
Sue Richardson oversees our children's Christian formation every Sunday. Originally from New York, Sue has lived in Colorado since 1979. Her parish home is St. Martin in the Fields, Aurora. There she has served on the Vestry three times, overseen Sunday School, Vacation Bible School, and Children's Chapel. She brings with her a wealth of experience and a deep love of children, nurturing them in God's love. For the past 26 years she has worked as a vocational evaluator with Bayaud Enterprises, helping people with disabilities and disadvantages to find a vocational path. Sue remarks, "I believe that God does not call the equipped...He equips the called. I encourage folks to volunteer in Sunday School or other ministries without worrying about their abilities." Contact Sue at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celeste deLeon, Parish Administrator
Celeste has been at Church of the Ascension for ten plus years. She graduated from John F. Kennedy High School and attended Metro State College. She is a Denver native and currently lives in Park Hill. She has three children, ages 20, 16, and 7. She has a loving husband who supports everything she does. She enjoys, running, yoga, and generally being a mom. Contact Celeste at email@example.com.
The REv'd. Tim Dunbar, Parish Deacon
Tim Dunbar is the Deacon at Church of the Ascension. Tim grew up in Littleton and has lived in Denver for the past fifteen years. Tim works closely with the priest in all matters of parish life, serves in the liturgy, preaches and teaches, and works with the Outreach Committee.
Tim currently works full-time as the Director of Finance and Administration for the Colorado Health Institute, a non-profit, non-partisan research institute dedicated to providing evidence-based data and information to inform policy, advance health, promote collaboration and support better access to care for all Coloradans. Tim’s extracurricular interests include:
Writing – he’s published one short story in a UK literary journal
Bicycle commuting – he rides his bike to work almost every day
Attending concerts – he’s seen Bob Dylan ten times!
Exploring local breweries – his favorite is the Bull & Bush
Reading – his favorites authors are Fyodor Dostoevsky, Flannery O’Connor and Don DeLillo
Tamara Schmiege, Interim Music Director
Dr. Tamara Schmiege began her musical career as an organ student at the Interlochen Arts Academy. She earned the Bachelor of Music Degree from the Eastman School of Music, the Master of Music Degree from Indiana University, and the Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Organ and Church Music from the University of Michigan. Her teachers included David Craighead, Robert Glasgow, Marilyn Mason, Russell Saunders, Larry Smith, and Christopher Young. Tamara has served as Director of Music and Organist for Lutheran and Episcopal parishes since 1993. Most recently, she was the Director of Music and Organist at St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Fort Collins. In 2013 she studied graphic arts and web design and is now a Web Producer for Interweave. Tamara also serves as Web Producer for the Association of Anglican Musicians and for the Tri-State Chapter of the American Guild of Organists. Contact Tamara at firstname.lastname@example.org.