Meet the Nielsens: Jens, Sarah, Lisa, and Eric
The Rev. Eric Nielsen has served as Pastor of First Presbyterian Church since July of 2001. A native of Cedar Falls, Iowa, he graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in Economics Education. He completed his Seminary training at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary in 1991, receiving the John W. Meister Award as the top pastoral graduate of the class.
Prior to his service in Eau Claire, Pastor Eric has served as the Pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Conrad, Iowa (1991-1996) and First Presbyterian Church of East Moline, Illinois (1996-2001). As a member of the Presbytery of Northern Waters, he currently serves on the Finance and Budget committee as well as the permanent Judicial committee. In 2006 he completed 5 years of service as a clergy commissioner to the Synod of Lakes and Prairies. There he served as chair of the Finance committee for 4 years, as well as serving as Moderator of the Synod during his last year. In 2010 he served as Presbytery commissioner to the meeting of the General Assembly and was one of six candidates for the position of Moderator of the 219th General Assembly. While he was not elected, his presence entered the national stage of the denomination, and he has since become a "positive voice for a positive future" in the life of the PC(USA).
In our local community, Pastor Eric serves on the Professional Consultation Committee of Mayo Health System - Eau Claire. He has helped in the formation of CARELink, an ecumenical ministry of over 30 congregations in partnership with the Salvation Army, which seeks to address emergency short-term needs of community residents. Pastor Eric also serves as a volunteer chaplain with the Eau Claire Police Department.
Pastor Eric enjoys Cubs baseball (because God is always for the underdog), and Dallas Cowboys football (for which all good Christians forgive him). He enjoys singing with the church choir, attending his children's school events, and the activities in the great outdoors of Wisconsin.
Pastor Eric's wife, Lisa, is his high school sweetheart, and they have been married since 1987. Also an avid fan of outdoor life in Wisconsin, she likes to work in the yard, play with their dog Molly, and ride around town on her Kymco scooter.
Pastor Eric and Lisa have two children. Their daughter, Sarah, is a college student and is actively involved in Volleyball. Their son, Jens, attends technical college and enjoys singing with the Mastersingers, fishing, video games and James Bond movies. Lisa's mother, Liz Narveson, completes the household. Also a member of the congregation, Liz is actively involved in the 3-5 Club, the after school tutoring ministry of the church.