Our vestry is composed of 9 lay leaders and the Rector of the parish, who functions as the pastoral leader and the CEO. The Rector is charged with not only the liturgical and pastoral leadership of the parish, but also hires all staff and assisting clergy, oversees property usage and stewardship, and serves as the face and voice of the parish in the wider community. The rector each year appoints a Senior Warden (or Rector’s Warden), who functions much like a board president, and becomes the chief advisor for and advocate of the Rector. The Vestry also elects a Junior Warden (or People’s Warden) who is charged with assisting on the Executive Committee of the Vestry, and often focuses on property issues. The Treasurer and Clerk are often, though not necessarily members of the vestry, but also serve with the wardens on the Executive Committee along with the Rector. To learn more about the wider governance of the Episcopal Church, you may wish to read more on Wikipedia: The Episcopal Church.
Vestry and Officer Bios
Stephen R. Baker
Stephen R. Baker was born in Berkeley, California, a sixth-generation Californian, and a third-generation native. His father enlisted in the United States Navy in 1943, and Steve and his mother stayed with family and friends until they moved to Monrovia in March of 1945. Steve’s father was a Monrovia native, and his paternal grandmother’s family had lived in the community since 1888. Steve attended Wild Rose School, Clifton Junior High School, and Monrovia-Duarte High School. He is a graduate of Citrus College, with an AA Degree in music, and also a graduate of California State University, Los Angeles, with a BA Degree in Psychology.
Steve began attending St. Luke’s in the fall of 1960 after being introduced to Morton Kelsey, who became a friend and valued mentor. He was confirmed in May of 1961 and was an active member until leaving Monrovia in 1962. A visit with Morton Kelsey in 1967 led to a return to Monrovia and St. Luke’s and an active membership now spanning fifty years. During those fifty years, Steve has sung in the choir, served on committees, been a member of the Vestry with service as junior warden and clerk, and filled the position of parish administrator. Steve recently completed his fifth year as the parish treasurer. Steve is utterly convinced that St. Luke’s is a profound place of healing, both from personal experience and from watching the lives of those around him. We do indeed heal the world one welcome at a time. Vestry service for Steve means strengthening our parish physically and financially so that we may continue to expand our role as a place of healing.
Richard Beatty was born in Pasadena, growing up in Arcadia and at All Saints Church in Pasadena. After doing his undergrad studies in engineering at Caltech, he “swam the Tiber” to the Roman church and was a seminarian, monk, cleric, and parish associate for several years. The ever-tasteful light of Anglicanism continued to shine, and he returned to the Episcopal Church. After more graduate studies and teaching at the University of Notre Dame, he lived in Washington DC, Moscow, Houston, San Diego, and finally settled (permanently!) in Pasadena, recently retiring from Caltech/JPL. He has sung in numerous parish and semi-professional choirs over the years, and was drawn to St. Luke’s by an announcement some years back seeking singers for the fall Men’s Evensong…and that, combined with the wonderful community of choir and congregation, got him hooked. He also serves as a lector and tries (sometimes vainly) to get our music to play on the Sunday Zoom liturgies.
Outside of St. Luke’s, he enjoys traveling (on hold for the pandemic), cooking, and is on the board of the Caltech Y (a student service organization) and the Global AIDS Interfaith Alliance.
His favorite quote is, “When I was a seminarian, I knew all the answers. Now, 40 years later, I’m just trying to figure out what the questions are.”
Alexandra Bond was born in the Bay Area and raised in the Finger Lakes Region of Upstate NY. She studied Clarinet Performance at Rice University and the University of Southern California before turning to architecture. In an unexpected development, Lexi was fortunate enough to pursue her Master in Architecture at Harvard University and then returned to Los Angeles. Her current work focuses on rail transportation projects and infrastructure. She has been active in churches for around fifteen years, and began attending St. Luke’s in February 2018. Lexi challenges the extremes of sophistication in her concurrent pursuits of ballet pointe and country line dancing.
Kathy Eisel has been an involved member of this parish community for over 30 years. "I have enjoyed worshiping and getting to know my brothers and sisters in Christ. We have a very special community and I feel very fortunate to be a part of it." Kathy is a cradle Episcopalian who was baptized in the community of St. Luke’s in 1960 by the Rev. Morton Kelsey. She married her husband Lester here in 1984. "After our wedding, the rector, Rev. Ev Simson, encouraged us to become more involved with the parish. Lester found his home in the choir and I was called to other ministries." As a member of this parish, Kathy has shared her time and talents in many different ways. In the past she has served as Senior Warden, Vestry member, Search Committee Chair, Profile Committee, Welcome Committee, Parish Delegate to Diocesan Convention, Diocesan Centennial Celebration parish rep, By-laws Committee, Office volunteer, and Outreach Coordinator. Currently, she serves as a Liturgical leader (scheduling and training), Lay Eucharistic Minister, Acolyte, Stewardship Committee, Legacy Committee, Altar Guild, and SLUGs (St. Luke’s Unorthodox Gatherings).
Kathy's work experience includes a 20-year career in retail management with Sears, Roebuck & Co, finishing as a Store Operations manager. For the past 15 years, she has worked for the State of California, first with the Compensation Insurance Fund as a workers’ compensation claims adjuster, then as a Senior Insurance Compliance Officer in the Health Claims Bureau of the Department of Insurance, investigating consumer and health care provider complaints against insurance companies. "I have been blessed in how my work has helped me share the love of Christ by word and example." As many parishioners know, Kathy is involved with Scottish activities as a certified Scottish Highland dance teacher. Her group, the Gordon Highlanders, meets on Thursday nights at St. Luke's, and trains dancers of all ages to compete in competitions and to perform in local shows. She is also currently the Vice-Chairperson for the United Scottish Society and past Chairperson of Clans of the Highlands, two local groups working to continue the traditions of Scotland.
Susan Goff was born in Pasadena, moved to Monrovia in 1951, and graduated from Monrovia (Monrovia-Duarte) High School. She began attending St. Luke’s in 1959. She and Cliff Goff were married at St. Luke’s in 1960 and have been members ever since. Their two children, Clifton, Jr., and Elizabeth were both baptized here. After retirement, Susan became a “behind the scenes” volunteer, beginning with the Library reorganization. “I rejoice in the spiritual and congregational life as a great source of solace and fun.”
Lisa Kiriakidis has been attending St. Luke’s since 2015, and she is proud to say her parents were married here in June 1951. One year after their marriage, they moved to Northern California where Lisa and her two sisters were raised. They returned to Southern California when Lisa was fifteen, and she has lived in this area ever since. She graduated from Temple City High School and USC, and raised her son and daughter in Arcadia, before moving to Monrovia in 2008.
Lisa is an attorney and a certified specialist in family law. In addition to litigation, she has a mediation practice and is collaboratively trained, trying to look for peaceful solutions in all of her cases. She enjoys being involved in the Pasadena legal community as the vice-president of the Pasadena Bar Association and the chairperson of the Family Law section. She also coordinates the Daily Settlement Officer program for the Pasadena Superior court family law departments, which offer free mediation every court day. Lisa is also the exuberantly proud grandmother of four-month-old Bodhi James Goodwin. When she is not driving to Huntington Beach to spend time with him and his mother and father, she enjoys hula and ukulele lessons, camping, reading, traveling, and taking cooking classes. She is very happy to be part of the warm and welcoming St. Luke’s community.
Raquel Mc Laughlin moved to Monrovia in 2015 and started attending Saint Luke's in 2016 where she felt warmth and love. "Saint Luke's is a special gem, bringing you organically closer to God's Love." Raquel is single with no kids. You may see her walking the neighborhood with her best friend "Mama", her rescue Golden Lab Mix dog.
Raquel grew up and was raised in the San Gabriel Valley, attending Alhambra High School and then California State University, Fullerton, where she studied communications and journalism. She started working with KTLA Tribune in her senior year of college. Raquel is a business partner at Vintage Treasures & Antiques in Arcadia, which she launched in 2013 with her mother and best friend Jeanette. She enjoys coordinating Vintage Fashion Shows - always a fun passion. Raquel is a volunteer for the Kiwanis organization. Children's causes are also close to her heart. Her hobbies include antique hunting, coordinating vintage media shoots, indie films, hiking, and biking. She is a foodie and enjoys art and all dog-related fun!
Christine Pregent was born in Vallejo California, the third of four children. Her father was in the military so her family moved quite a lot including stints in Japan, New Jersey, France, and bases in California. She married during her college years and has three children: one lives locally, one in Alameda, CA, and one in Scottsdale, AZ. She has four grandchildren and spends a lot of happy times visiting them. Most of her career was spent in IT, but the last many years she worked as a Psychiatric Nurse in Covina. Six years ago she moved to Monrovia to live with her mother Consuelo. Her sister, Virginia, came a bit later to help care for their mother. "We started attending the 8:00 services at St. Luke’s and were overjoyed to find such inspirational services, wonderful friends, and the many opportunities for spiritual fulfillment. St. Luke’s has really helped us to grow together but also to feel a part of such a loving community. I can't tell you how much being a part of St. Luke’s has meant to all three of us, how much you all mean to us."
Sonja M. Shea
Sonja M. Shea has been a regular member at St. Luke's for over five years now. She spent most of her life in what used to be called West Germany. Her father worked for an international steel company and she spent much of her childhood traveling around Europe, Mexico, Algeria. Her mother, two older brothers, and many other family members still live back in Germany. Her son Dustin was born in 1990, and then she started her law career, initially working in the District Attorney's Office, at court or at city hall. She then worked for over 17 years as an attorney in private practice with a small law firm. "For over 20 years, I represented families, upheld mortgages, protected clients from damages or helped clients seek damages. I've helped families in difficult times and also sent people to jail." When her son went to college in 2012, Sonja came to the U.S. and settled in Duarte. "It was a dream come true to be so close to Los Angeles. My husband Jim and I enjoy discovering this amazing place." She currently works in property management, still managing the legal end with leases, but also now spending just as much time with plumbers, electricians, and contractors (that is, when she's not knitting shawls or baking fresh bread for the welcome table).
David Tolemy has been attending St. Luke's for three years with his wife Amy and their two children Jake and Ethan. After growing distant from the Catholic Church he was raised in, David sporadically attended a number of other churches but never found a place to call home. From the first visit to St Luke's, that all changed. Drawn in by both the welcoming community and the powerful message delivered from the pulpit each week, David attended confirmation classes and became an official member of the Episcopalian community in 2018. He enjoys taking an active role in service, including helping out with ushering, readings, and taking part in the occasional play. In his personal life, David is a freelance writer and occasional actor. He studied at New York University and graduated with honors before moving to California with Amy. In 2019 the couple celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary and 20th year together. This makes them older than he would like to admit. When he's not writing or hanging out with his sons, David enjoys watching and playing all kinds of sports, particularly baseball. He also loves comic books, regular books, and bingeing on pulpy television shows.
Lyn Walsh has been attending St. Luke's and singing in the choir since 1978. She was an Occupational Therapist for 40 years and retired in 2004. She was happily married to Jack for 33 years who died in March of 2011. Being British (with her family in England), she has considered the people of St. Luke's to be her surrogate family. This was proven beyond a doubt when everyone's love, prayers, and support helped her get through some tough medical adventures over the past few years. She is encouraged by Fr. Neil's leadership and the directions the church is taking in parish growth and involvement in the community. "The commitment to increased faith and worship continues to feel tangible." She loves to contribute to St Luke's parish and worship by being a choir member and fundraiser, a lector, and a Foothill Unity Center volunteer.