“My first day at First Congregational Church of Wilmette was August 1, 1996. On that day, I got into a van and drove with other adult leaders and senior high youth to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in South Dakota for a mission trip.” Thus began Stephanie Perdew VanSlyke’s 20-year ministry at the church. Dr. VanSlyke is a longtime resident of Evanston and is married to Todd VanSlyke, retired instructor of marketing.

As pastor, teacher, mentor, and friend, Dr. VanSlyke has built a solid foundation of programs for children and youth, enhanced the women’s ministry, encouraged involvement in worship, officiated at dozens of weddings and memorials, and stood alongside hundreds of individuals and families as they faced life challenges.