There are five conferences in the Southeastern Minnesota Synod. Each conference serves to cultivate relationships between congregations, provide a community for ministry leaders, select representatives to boards and committees in the synod, and create workgroups in alignment with the mission of the synod. Officers are elected to represent each conference, including a Dean, Secretary, and Treasurer. Each conference holds monthly meetings (for rostered and lay leadership) and annual conference assemblies.

The 5 Conferences:
  • Blue Earth River
  • Cannon River
  • Minnesota River
  • Root River
  • Zumbro River

(view map here)

Conference Officers

Updated September 30, 2021

Blue Earth River
  • Dean: Cathy Legried
  • Vice Dean: Rev. Kristi Mitchell
  • Secretary: Rev. Erica Cunningham
  • Treasurer: Bruce Ness
  • Chaplain: Rev. Dr. Jeanette Bidne
Cannon River
  • Dean: Rev. Chris Culuris
  • Vice Dean: Rev. Drew Yackel
  • Secretary: Rev. Dave Knox
  • Treasurer: Rev. Hannah Bergstrom de Leon
  • Chaplain: Rev. Tim Ehling
Minnesota River
  • Vice Dean: Rev. Liz Rossing
  • Vice Dean: Rev. Jason Pollington
  • Secretary: James Christiansen
  • Treasurer: Rev. Kristen Anderson
  • Chaplain: Rev. Trish Reedstrom
Root River
  • Dean: Rev. Corrine Haulotte
  • Vice Dean: Rev. Dean Aponte-Safe
  • Secretary: Rev. Linda McPeak
  • Treasurer: Rev. Nissa Peterson
  • Chaplain: Rev. Elizabeth Hermeier
Zumbro River
  • Dean: Rev. Megan Reedstrom
  • Vice Dean: Rev. Lisa Janke
  • Secretary: Rev. Nikki Rockne
  • Treasurer: Larry Laber
  • Chaplain: Rev. Charlie Leonard

Conference Meetings

Each month during the program year (September through May), rostered and lay ministry leaders gather for conference meetings in their respective conferences. Please contact your conference secretary to get added to your conference’s mailing list. The general gathering schedule is as follows (always subject to change):

  • Blue Earth River Conference:
    • 9:00AM fellowship, 10:00AM worship, 10:45AM/11AM program, 11:45AM lunch
  • Cannon River Conference:
    • 9:00AM fellowship, 10:00AM worship, 11:00AM announcements, updates, and a presentation, 12:00PM lunch
  • Minnesota River Conference:
    • 9:30AM fellowship coffee, 10:00AM worship, 10:30AM program, 11:30AM meal
  • Root River Conference:
    • 9:00AM fellowship, 9:30AM introductions and announcements, 10:00-10:30AM worship, 10:30AM break, 10:35AM-12:00PM program, 12:00PM lunch and table discussion
  • Zumbro River Conference:
    • 9:00AM fellowship, 9:45AM introductions and announcements, 10:00AM worship, 10:30AM break, 10:35AM program, 12PM lunch


Annual Conference Assemblies

Each conference shall hold a Conference Assembly at least annually, typically at the beginning of February. Each congregation shall be represented by its pastor(s), Deacons, and three times the number of lay voting members it is entitled to at the Synod Assembly. (See document below for specifics.) Resolutions may be submitted by the given deadline and elections will be held for open conference positions. In the year before Churchwide Assembly voters are elected at a Synod Assembly, conferences will elect their representatives.

How many voters can a congregation send to the Conference Assembly? Find the 2021 guide here.