So this crazy thing called youth ministry here at Village simply does not happen without a slew of volunteers. With Sunday mornings, youth group on Sunday and Wednesday nights, trips happening during the year and during summers, special events and more, we couldn’t do everything without an incredible community surrounding the ministry. For that we are incredibly thankful.
We also have some people on staff to keep tabs on things as best we can on a day-to-day basis. Just who are we? Well…
ZACH WALKER | Pastor of Youth Ministries
Zach originally came to Village as a high school student. After heading to Wisconsin to attend Lawrence University, he soon applied to seminary, graduating from Princeton Theological Seminary in 2007. He has served in youth ministry for over 15 years and has served as the Pastor of Youth Ministries at Village since 2013. Zach enjoys pretty much anything outdoors, reads as much as possible, and is an avid runner. He and his wife, Meredith, have a 10-month-old (Silas) who keeps them plenty busy, too!
JENNA SOLTYS | Associate Director of Youth Ministries
Jenna was an active member of VPC growing up and after graduating from college (High Point University, 2013) and graduate school (University of Northern Colorado, 2015) she is happy to be back in Prairie Village and serving at her home church. While Jenna’s educational background includes degrees in Vocal Performance and Graphic Design, her ministry background includes summers working at Montreat Conference Center and KidShine Performing Arts Camps as well as previous church employment in various capacities. When not working, you can probably find her hanging out with friends or family, shopping at Target, or walking her Longhaired Chihuahua, Icelynn.
ABIGAIL LUTZ | Youth Coordinator
Abigail began attending Village just a short year ago after graduating from Colorado State University in May 2016. She was baptized and joined as a member in September and has loved all that Village has had to offer (Young Adult pizza Thursday’s, HELLO!). With a major in English and a background in graphic design, Abigail is excited to bring her creative views to the youth department and help make it even greater than it already is. Start talking about Fixer Upper, raspberries, or dogs and you’ll have a friend in Abigail!
KEVIN DOLAN | Youth Band Director
Kevin, the “young old man” of the department, has been leading the Youth Band at Village for over a decade. He graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz with a degree in Guitar Performance. If that isn’t enough to enhance his street cred, Kevin is also a children’s musician, known world ’round as Dino O’Dell, with performances scheduled regularly in the KC area and beyond. Kevin’s creativity and background in teaching are an invaluable asset to the youth department. Kevin is also an avid soccer fan, is an amazing father and husband, and can regale you with tales of “the old days” of the ’70’s. It was a crazy time, man.
MATTHEW SHEPARD | Youth Choir Director
Matthew brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the youth staff. Not only has he been directing the youth choir for over 10 years, he also holds masters degrees in conducting as well as vocal pedagogy. Originally from Kansas City, with his undergraduate degree at William and Jewell, and Masters at UMKC, Shep knows the area like none other. And, let’s be honest, he is simultaneously the handsomest and cutest member of the youth staff. And hairiest. Hands down. Not even a competition.