Dennis Mulherin has been the Executive Director of Lutheran Education Queensland (LEQ) since the beginning of 2017.
After an early career spanning stints in all three sectors of education in Queensland – Government, Catholic and Independent schools – Dennis has been in leadership roles in Lutheran schools for 15 years. ‘I love the holistic education Lutheran schools provide based on the gospel and with Christ at the centre of all that they do’, Dennis says. ‘Moving to the LEQ secretariat gave me the opportunity to support the amazing work of leaders and staff in all 26 Lutheran schools in the state.’
A department of the LCAQD, LEQ oversees the operation and supports the 26 schools and 60 early childhood services in the District. A small secretariat incorporating a QLECS branch works to provide the support and assistance needed at the local level. ‘Creating a culture of collaboration has been a key focus in recent years’, Dennis continues. ‘We have schools and services doing fantastic jobs. It is great that they can work together to be the best they can be for every child.’
‘A Lutheran education plays a vital role in the mission of the church in Queensland and across the country’, Dennis says, explaining why he feels Lutheran education is so important. ‘It gives Lutheran families and those of other Christian denominations an opportunity to educate their children in a nurturing environment that is consistent with their faith and values, reflective of their theology in action, and offering a high-quality education that develops the whole child.’
In his role as Executive Director, Dennis finds his reward lies in being a part of a quality team that assists staff across the department to become empowered. ‘I am also surprised almost every day’, he continues. ‘That is one of the joys of my vocation. No two days are ever the same. I am meeting with new people every day, identifying new challenges and discovering new ideas and strategies to solve problems. To visit 26 different school communities is a blessing!’
Dennis affirms that schools and early childhood services form an integral element of the local mission and ministry of congregations in the local community. ‘I would encourage congregations to pray for their local schools and services’, he says, ‘and to be involved in fundraising events of their schools and services, and to communicate openly with them to ensure that there is an understanding of the common mission.’
Dennis asks that congregations and individual members keep the staff and families served by the Lutheran schools and services in their thoughts and prayers.