Our Leaders

LaSalle Street Church is an inter-denominational faith community. Our members include folks from varying Christian faith traditions which adds to our culture of diversity as followers of Jesus. Our pastoral team reflects this diversity, having come from a wide range of denominational backgrounds including Baptist, Methodist, Charismatic, Lutheran, Roman Catholic, and Presbyterian. We value the perspectives and practices that each of us bring as we weave our faith lives together into one unified tapestry of believers. For a list of our elder board leaders, please click here.

Laura S. Truax. Senior Pastor Senior Pastor Laura Truax has been on the pastoral staff since 2000; she became senior pastor in 2004. Rev. Truax has a Master’s of Arts in Pastoral Studies with an emphasis in Spirituality and a Master’s of Divinity from Loyola University. Rev. Truax is a teaching pastor at the University of Chicago and often speaks around the country on the topics of faith and justice. Her vision is building communities of disciples who are authentic, relevant and passionate about following Jesus. Email Laura

Laura S. Truax. Senior Pastor

Senior Pastor Laura Truax has been on the pastoral staff since 2000; she became senior pastor in 2004. Rev. Truax has a Master’s of Arts in Pastoral Studies with an emphasis in Spirituality and a Master’s of Divinity from Loyola University. Rev. Truax is a teaching pastor at the University of Chicago and often speaks around the country on the topics of faith and justice. Her vision is building communities of disciples who are authentic, relevant and passionate about following Jesus.

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Pamela Meyer-Case Director of Children's Ministry Pamela is an ordained Lutheran Minister and has been on the staff of La Salle Street Church since 1999. Helping children grow in mind, body and spirit is my passion. Jesus welcomed the children to be with him; and it is my goal to help children discover and delight in the loving presence of God in their lives. Children are welcomed, celebrated and mentored at LaSalle Street Church. We invite you to come experience what our Children's Ministry is all about. Email Pam

Pamela Meyer-Case

Director of Children's Ministry

Pamela is an ordained Lutheran Minister and has been on the staff of La Salle Street Church since 1999. Helping children grow in mind, body and spirit is my passion. Jesus welcomed the children to be with him; and it is my goal to help children discover and delight in the loving presence of God in their lives. Children are welcomed, celebrated and mentored at LaSalle Street Church. We invite you to come experience what our Children's Ministry is all about.

Email Pam

Deb Maloney Director of Finance and Operations Deb joined the staff at The LaSalle Street Foundation as the Director of Finance and Operations in October 2013. She has 20 years experience in Accounting working for a number of insurance companies as well as small businesses. She earned a BS in Finance at Northern Illinois University and an MBA at Governors State University with an emphasis in Accounting and Information Systems. Deb has 2 sons that are currently attending college. Email Deb  

Deb Maloney

Director of Finance and Operations

Deb joined the staff at The LaSalle Street Foundation as the Director of Finance and Operations in October 2013. She has 20 years experience in Accounting working for a number of insurance companies as well as small businesses. She earned a BS in Finance at Northern Illinois University and an MBA at Governors State University with an emphasis in Accounting and Information Systems. Deb has 2 sons that are currently attending college.

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Randall K. Blakey   Executive Pastor Executive Pastor Randall K. Blakey has been on the pastoral staff since 2011. Pastor Blakey serves as Chief of Staff and shares the ministerial responsibilities of preaching, teaching and pastoral care. He is a board member of the Near North Unity Program (NNUP) and the Near North Ministers Alliance (NNMA) and a graduate of Tennessee State University, McCormick Theological Seminary, The Divinity School of Harvard University and Northwestern University. Pastor Blakey has an extensive background in broadcast television and presently freelances as Director of Photography for ABC-7 shows 190 North, Heart & Soul and N’-Beat. His passion for ministry includes social justice, racial reconciliation, pulpit diversity and pneumatology. Email Randall

Randall K. Blakey   Executive Pastor

Executive Pastor Randall K. Blakey has been on the pastoral staff since 2011. Pastor Blakey serves as Chief of Staff and shares the ministerial responsibilities of preaching, teaching and pastoral care. He is a board member of the Near North Unity Program (NNUP) and the Near North Ministers Alliance (NNMA) and a graduate of Tennessee State University, McCormick Theological Seminary, The Divinity School of Harvard University and Northwestern University. Pastor Blakey has an extensive background in broadcast television and presently freelances as Director of Photography for ABC-7 shows 190 North, Heart & Soul and N’-Beat. His passion for ministry includes social justice, racial reconciliation, pulpit diversity and pneumatology.

Email Randall

Julie Welborn Associate Pastor of Youth and Family Life Julie holds a Master of Divinity and a Certificate in Biblical Spirituality from Catholic Theological Union; a Master of Arts in Communication from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and a Bachelor of Arts in Theater from Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Julie has extensive experience serving youth, and is excited to have joined our team in the spring of 2017 to do just that! Welcome Julie!

Julie Welborn

Associate Pastor of Youth and Family Life

Julie holds a Master of Divinity and a Certificate in Biblical Spirituality from Catholic Theological Union; a Master of Arts in Communication from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and a Bachelor of Arts in Theater from Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Julie has extensive experience serving youth, and is excited to have joined our team in the spring of 2017 to do just that! Welcome Julie!

Katie Keilman Finance and Operations Assistant   Katie Keilman joined the staff as the Finance and Operations Assistant in January 2017.  She earned a BS from Northern Illinois University in Sport and Recreation Management.  Earning a Masters of Accounting and Finance from Keller Graduate School of Management in 2012 brought a career change.  She has 4 years of experience in accounting working for car dealerships and a small tax accounting firm.     

Katie Keilman

Finance and Operations Assistant

 

Katie Keilman joined the staff as the Finance and Operations Assistant in January 2017.  She earned a BS from Northern Illinois University in Sport and Recreation Management.  Earning a Masters of Accounting and Finance from Keller Graduate School of Management in 2012 brought a career change.  She has 4 years of experience in accounting working for car dealerships and a small tax accounting firm. 

 

 

Jonathan Ulanday Director of Worship and the Arts Jonathan Ulanday joined LaSalle Street Church in the fall of 2016. Jonathan holds a Bachelor’s of Music from the Eastman School of Music, and a Master’s of Music from DePaul University, and led worship for the chapel at Trinity International University for several years after finishing graduate studies. Jonathan believes that music and the arts can help us enter more deeply into one another’s stories and lives, and is committed to diverse worship that is both multicultural and intergenerational. He is fascinated with the ways that music and art intersect with faith, and how they can enable us to more fully experience the kingdom of God and the beauty that is the community of faith.    Jonathan is also active as an independent musician and worship leader. He teaches classical clarinet as an Adjunct Faculty member at Trinity International University and leads/plays for worship teams at retreats, conferences, and events around Chicago. Recently he served as a vocalist and lead electric guitarist for the 2016 Christian Community Development Association National Conference, and the 2015 Urbana Student Missions Conference (and can be heard singing and playing guitars on the Urbana 15 Live worship album, available on iTunes). Email Jonathan

Jonathan Ulanday

Director of Worship and the Arts

Jonathan Ulanday joined LaSalle Street Church in the fall of 2016. Jonathan holds a Bachelor’s of Music from the Eastman School of Music, and a Master’s of Music from DePaul University, and led worship for the chapel at Trinity International University for several years after finishing graduate studies. Jonathan believes that music and the arts can help us enter more deeply into one another’s stories and lives, and is committed to diverse worship that is both multicultural and intergenerational. He is fascinated with the ways that music and art intersect with faith, and how they can enable us to more fully experience the kingdom of God and the beauty that is the community of faith. 

 

Jonathan is also active as an independent musician and worship leader. He teaches classical clarinet as an Adjunct Faculty member at Trinity International University and leads/plays for worship teams at retreats, conferences, and events around Chicago. Recently he served as a vocalist and lead electric guitarist for the 2016 Christian Community Development Association National Conference, and the 2015 Urbana Student Missions Conference (and can be heard singing and playing guitars on the Urbana 15 Live worship album, available on iTunes).

Email Jonathan

Sharon Purifoy Williams Administrative Assistant Joining LaSalle Street Church as an Administrative Assistant in spring of 1996, Sharon gladly holds the current team record as the longest employed staff member. She also represents where the church’s heart has always been – in the community. A former long-time resident of the Near-North side and Cabrini-Green area, Sharon Williams began her career as an admin assistant with LaSalle Street Church’s former partner ministry, Community Youth Creative Learning Experience (CYCLE), where her three children attended and she worked for seven years. Sharon provides administrative support to the pastoral and office staff, and is the facilities scheduler for the church and Cornerstone Center. Her team lovingly refers to her as the “Mother and Queen Bee” of the office and the glue that holds it all together. As a liaison between the church office and its congregation, whether in person, over the phone or even through email, you can always count on Sharon to have a welcoming smile, assuring voice, helping hand, and a servant’s heart. Email Sharon

Sharon Purifoy Williams

Administrative Assistant

Joining LaSalle Street Church as an Administrative Assistant in spring of 1996, Sharon gladly holds the current team record as the longest employed staff member. She also represents where the church’s heart has always been – in the community. A former long-time resident of the Near-North side and Cabrini-Green area, Sharon Williams began her career as an admin assistant with LaSalle Street Church’s former partner ministry, Community Youth Creative Learning Experience (CYCLE), where her three children attended and she worked for seven years. Sharon provides administrative support to the pastoral and office staff, and is the facilities scheduler for the church and Cornerstone Center. Her team lovingly refers to her as the “Mother and Queen Bee” of the office and the glue that holds it all together. As a liaison between the church office and its congregation, whether in person, over the phone or even through email, you can always count on Sharon to have a welcoming smile, assuring voice, helping hand, and a servant’s heart.

Email Sharon

Rob Clearfield Artist in Residence A native of the Chicago area, Rob Clearfield has had the privilege of a very diverse musical background. Since high school, Rob has shown an interest in many styles of music, studying and performing jazz, gospel, rock, hip-hop, classical and afro-latin. After a brief period of study at the Chicago College of Performing Arts, Clearfield has enjoyed a successful career as a performer, working professionally with such artists as Fareed Haque, Juma Santos, Corey Wilkes, Ernest Dawkins, Steve Gorn, Zach Brock and Walt Whitman and the Soul Children of Chicago. In addition to his work at LaSalle, Clearfield is also an active composer. His original music can be heard in the jazz/indie rock group Information Superhighway, whose debut was released fall 2006. Email Rob

Rob Clearfield

Artist in Residence

A native of the Chicago area, Rob Clearfield has had the privilege of a very diverse musical background. Since high school, Rob has shown an interest in many styles of music, studying and performing jazz, gospel, rock, hip-hop, classical and afro-latin. After a brief period of study at the Chicago College of Performing Arts, Clearfield has enjoyed a successful career as a performer, working professionally with such artists as Fareed Haque, Juma Santos, Corey Wilkes, Ernest Dawkins, Steve Gorn, Zach Brock and Walt Whitman and the Soul Children of Chicago. In addition to his work at LaSalle, Clearfield is also an active composer. His original music can be heard in the jazz/indie rock group Information Superhighway, whose debut was released fall 2006.

Email Rob

Oreon K. Trickey Associate Pastor of Congregational Life Oreon is an ordained Free Methodist minister who has been involved in ministry to and with homeless folks for the past 20 years. Her position as Breaking Bread Director allows her to continue to live our her passion for social justice coupled with a strong sense of following Jesus (which is what LaSalle Street Church is all about). As Associate Pastor of Congregational Life, Oreon has the opportunity to minister within our church family through small groups, connecting events, and other creative endeavors. Email Oreon

Oreon K. Trickey

Associate Pastor of Congregational Life

Oreon is an ordained Free Methodist minister who has been involved in ministry to and with homeless folks for the past 20 years. Her position as Breaking Bread Director allows her to continue to live our her passion for social justice coupled with a strong sense of following Jesus (which is what LaSalle Street Church is all about). As Associate Pastor of Congregational Life, Oreon has the opportunity to minister within our church family through small groups, connecting events, and other creative endeavors.

Email Oreon

Natasha Norris Director of Communications & Special Projects   Email Natasha

Natasha Norris

Director of Communications & Special Projects

 

Email Natasha