My wife of over 15 years, Angie, and I moved to Cumberland to start our family of four children in 2006. At home, our family extends well past the parents and kids. Angie’s mom, Carol, lives with us along with three cats and a dog. Our immediate Cumberland family includes aunts, uncles, cousins, and a host of second cousins, the newest of which just arrived this summer. Living in a rural community surrounded by family and friends is an incredible blessing.
I grew up in Cumberland working for Ardisam (the family business) and attending the Cumberland School District. During the summer, my sister, my cousins, and I started working 40 hours a week at the factory when we were 10 years old. During high school, my teammates and I would play sports on Friday night and then limp into work at 6:00 a.m. Saturday morning to assemble augers and rototillers. We worked a lot of hours on the assembly line and then we would go work on the farm bailing hay and working the fields.
During my childhood, we attended St. Paul Lutheran Church. My grandparents attended St. Paul’s as well, so it was always good to see their faces every week. I attended Sunday School, was catechized, and confirmed at St. Paul’s. As a young man, I did not fully realize who God was or what path he was leading me down. I did not like going to church but understood that it was important to stand firm in the faith. Even though I attended church and believed in God, I was a rebellious kid.
My senior year of high school I was accepted into UW-Madison and graduated in the field of Mechanical Engineering. During the last year of college, I met Angie. I remember telling her that I would not hesitate to take her home to meet my mother. At the time, I did not understand that she and I were raised in different households with almost the exact same beliefs.
When Angie and I decided to start our family, we moved back to Cumberland. As a new parent, I thought, “how do I do this?” We kept our kids around faithful caregivers such as their first babysitter and the wonderful teachers at St. Paul Preschool. One day I got a call from John Garibaldi who asked me to be a 30-year-old elder at the church. I accepted the position and then took on a teaching position when the kids got older. By being a part of the leadership of the church and teaching the young people morality though the Bible, it became apparent to me just how important Christian Education was to me and my family.
I feel so strongly that our young people are missing the spiritual side of their life that I have committed myself to the Ascension Academy as a way to bring young people to Jesus without being rushed in and out of church on Wednesday night and Sunday morning.
Justin is a 6th Grade Science and Social Studies Teacher, Head Wrestling Coach, and FCA Huddle Leader in the Cumberland School District. He is a graduate of UW-Madison where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Education and wrestled for the Badgers for 5 years.
Justin is a member of Maranatha Evangelical Free Church in Rice Lake where he helps lead Men’s Ministry. He is married to his much better half, Megan, and has two children, Miriam and Harvey. In his spare time, he enjoys traveling, reading, disc golf, chess, and grabbing coffee with a friend.
Janelle Hagen is married to her husband Scott and has a five-year old son named Zimmer. Janelle grew up in Cumberland, WI and graduated from Cumberland Public Schools. She attended college at UW-Madison where she completed her Bachelor’s degrees in International Relations and Chinese Language. After college, Janelle accepted a job with Ardisam and has been working there ever since holding positions in the fields of supply chain management and product development. Janelle’s career with Ardisam has included many interesting adventures including a six-year stint living and working abroad as an expat in China where she was able to foster a love for other cultures.
Some of Janelle’s favorite hobbies are golf, basketball, swimming, reading, singing and traveling.
Janelle is an active member at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church and serves on the Board of Education. Janelle is excited to be a part of Ascension Academy because she believes that the message of Jesus Christ is the best gift that you can give to all nations and people and she wants to help inspire kids to foster a daily faith-walk that they may know the love of God and be in lifelong fellowship with him.
Janelle is inspired and hopes others will be also by Paul’s letter to the Ephesians in Chapter 2 verses 8-10:
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
Peter and his wife Ruth live with their five children just outside Barron, Wisconsin. Raised in the suburbs of Waukesha, Peter attended small private Christian schools, which his father helped found and served as an administrator and teacher. After moving to Spooner, he attended public high school (where his father was again sidelined as a teacher’s assistant), and was then homeschooled for his junior and senior years. Peter graduated from Wisconsin Lutheran College in 1999 with a Bachelor’s in Business Administration and began work at Hospital Maintenance Consultants in Chetek, WI, where he continues works today as the Director of Client Services.
The Westendorf family enjoys stewarding God’s resources through gardening and raising animals, as well as spending time together enjoying His creation while gathering firewood, camping, kayaking, hiking, hunting, and other outdoor activities.
Peter and Ruth are firm believers that parents are called by God to be the primary influence in their children’s lives and are responsible for making sure their children are raised to know and love God. It is their prayer that God would use Ascension Academy to assist families in our community to instill a Biblical worldview in the generations to come.
Deuteronomy 6:5-9 “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”.
Bob Schauf and his wife Karyn have four sons and eight grandchildren. Retired dairy farmers, they continue to cash crop and work with son Zach in their wood shavings manufacturing business.
Bob has a B.S. degree in Animal Science and Ag Mechanics. He has served on numerous boards including his church and is past president of the Wisconsin Holstein Association.
He is an avid hunter and water skier and enjoys mission work. Having started three of theirs sons' in Christian education, and has a great passion to help expose youth to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, through curriculum and education. His desire is that Ascension Academy will be a successful model of a Christian education system that can be replicated in Northwestern Wisconsin. John 3:16 is near and dear to his heart.
Ascension Academy, Inc. admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, financial aid programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.
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