The Dakotas UMC Camp and Retreat Ministry announces that Lara and Levi Ziegler are stepping down as site directors of Storm Mountain Center, where they have served for the past four years.
Keith Shew, Dakotas-Minnesota Area Director of Camp and Retreat Ministries, shared, “While we’re sad to see Lara and Levi move on from Storm Mountain, we celebrate their contribution to this vital ministry of the Dakotas Annual Conference. I’ve deeply appreciated the Zieglers’ leadership and their care for Storm Mountain Center. ”Lara Ziegler shares, “Over the past four years we have been humbled and privileged to steward this beautiful site for the Dakotas Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.”
Shew adds, “Lara and Levi faced multiple challenges and have been able to accomplish so much. They have left their mark at Storm and the positive impact of their ministry will be felt for generations to come.”
The Zieglers have made significant impacts during their ministry tenure. For the first time in its history, Storm Mountain Center has successfully achieved its first full accreditation through the American Camp Association. This has been an important goal for all the camps in the Dakotas-Minnesota Area, and has taken many months of diligence from staff and leadership to achieve.
Also, high-speed internet has been lacking at Storm Mountain, due to the steep, rugged terrain of this beautiful setting. Zieglers were instrumental in bringing high speed internet access to the camp, opening opportunities for camps and retreats where remote connectivity is necessary.
In addition, they have created and implemented new wilderness programming, built a strong and dedicated camp leadership team, added new retreat groups, ensured improvements to camp grounds and property, stewardship of financial resources, and successfully navigated COVID-19. They will be missed by our campers, families, churches, and area camping ministry team!
The Zieglers will stay on as site directors through the fall, providing oversight to camp operations, leadership of year-round staff, and helping prepare for the 2023 camp and retreat season until a new director is named. Their goal is to help make the transition as smooth as possible and to help reduce any strain or loss of momentum on Storm Mountain’s operations and planning.
A national search to fill the position of site director at Storm Mountain Center will begin soon. Click here to view the job opening.
By: Keith Shew, Dakotas-Minnesota Area Director of Camp and Retreat Ministries
This article may also be found at the www.dakotasumc.org website.