Janelle Koepke


Director of Planned Giving in Advancement

Janelle joined the Gustavus Advancement team in November 2017. In her role, Director of Planned Giving, she is privileged to work with donors wishing to make commitments and legacy gifts that will impact Gustavus beyond their lifetimes.  Janelle comes to Gustavus after serving most recently as Vice President for Mission Support at Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa.  Her commitment to the development profession is inspired by the holy moments that occur as she walks with donors who are living out their vocations and commitments to mission through their generosity. 

Janelle is a native of Nebraska, attended Dana College in Blair, Nebraska and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree double-major in Communication and Spanish and a minor in Business.  She also earned a Master’s degree from the University of Dubuque in Organizational Communication and Leadership.

Her career of almost 20 years has been spent working in several non-profits including Goodwill Industries, Area Residential Care, University of Dubuque, Camp Ewalu, and Wartburg Theological Seminary. Janelle has been active in ALDE (Association of Lutheran Development Executives), AFP (Association of Fundraising Professionals), and she holds a CFM (Certificate in Fundraising Management) from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University.

Janelle lives in Albert Lea, MN with her husband Shane, who is the lead pastor at Grace Lutheran Church in Albert Lea, and their two children, Brecken and Evelyn.


B.A. Communication and Spanish, Dana College; M.A. Organizational Communication and Leadership, University of Dubuque