Service Award

Church Relations

The Reverend Gerald (Jerry) Hoffman ‘59 has a passion for stewardship. He believes “All life is a gift from God. Stewardship is our grateful response. A healthy Christian life trusts in the abundance of God’s gifts. God has called us into mission and provides all the resources we need to do what God wants us to do.”

Hoffman, of St. Anthony Village, Minnesota is the recipient of the 2011 Gustavus Association of Congregations and Alumni Service Award. President Jack R. Ohle will present the award during morning Chapel on November 8, and Hoffman will give the homily.

Recognized for his vision and leadership in congregations, Hoffman’s contributions are in the field of stewardship education. He developed a multifaceted program to intentionally prepare students of Luther Seminary to become effective and confident stewardship leaders. He also worked to study, learn and replicate best stewardship practices to congregations.

He has been an influence and mentor to seminarians, pastors, and faculty colleagues, having developed courses, workshops, and a host of resources available for use. All eight ELCA seminaries have been influenced by his work at Luther Seminary to prepare seminarians for their roles as stewardship leaders, and his work has been replicated at other seminaries. Under his leadership, Luther Seminary’s Center for Stewardship Leadership, which he led for 4 years, has become a prototype for education of church leaders.

The Rev. Jerry Hoffman is a pastor who currently is a stewardship consultant for Kairos and Associates. For over 36 years, he served congregations in Connecticut, Kentucky, Indiana, and Minnesota (as senior pastor at Nativity Lutheran Church in St. Anthony Village). He has been an active volunteer for Lutheran Social Services of Minnesota, having served for 10 years on its Board of and for three years as its chair, during which time he introduced and helped institute the John Carver model for policy governance. Currently, he is a consultant and clergy coach for the LSS in an effort to renew the board’s understanding and practices. He is author of How Your Congregation Can Become a More Hospitable Community, Augsburg 1990.

Following his undergraduate work at Gustavus, he earned graduate degrees from Lutheran School of Theology–Chicago (Rock Island Campus), Valparaiso University, and engaged in graduate studies in adult education at Indiana University.

Hoffman is married to Joan (Miller ‘61). They have two married daughters, three grandsons and a granddaughter. He enjoys grand parenting, reading, travel, photography and golf.

The Association of Congregations and Alumni Service Award recognizes alumni and former students of Gustavus Adolphus College who have made distinctive commitments and contributions to the service of others. The selection committee consists of Association of Congregations and Alumni Board members.

Service Award Recipients

Year Name
1992 Rev. Thomas Neilson, '73
1993 Claire Hobart, '35
1994 Rev. James Wiberg, '61
1997 Joanna (Lundgren) Kuehn, '64
1999 Marjorie (Knudson) Olson, '42 & (the late) Robert Olson, '41
Mark W. Monson, '76 (posthumous)
2005 Jean-Paul Bigirindavyi '00
2006 Mary K. Nelson '61
2007 Ellen Ruiters '97
Donn Escher '50 (posthumous)
2008 Mary Ellen (Torsden) Kitundu '65
Dennis Lofstrom '51
2009 Susan J. Alexis '71
2010 Travis Dahlke '00
Nathan Dahlke '02
2011 The Rev. Gerald (Jerry) Hoffman '59
2013 Dr. Daniel Dewey '93