Ms. Velia grew up in Lakewood. She has worked in child care centers for most of her adult life, including more than a dozen years at St. Timothy. Ms. Velia’s career at St. Timothy includes experience as an elementary classroom aide and Elementary Day Care Director. When St. Timothy sought a new Preschool Director in 2007, Ms. Velia willingly filled the role. Her responsibilities include giving school tours, enrolling students, supervising the staff, maintaining compliance with California’s preschool mandates, scheduling field trips, and purchasing groceries and supplies. Ms. Velia also offers Summer Elementary Day Care in June, July, and August. Ms. Velia enjoys church, family activities, and Sudoku during her free time.
Karen teaches (music, Bible, Chapel, computers), provides playground and center activities, coordinates fundraisers, and assists Velia with administrative tasks. Karen has worked at St. Timothy since 1997. In addition to her Preschool responsibilities, she serves as St. Timothy Lutheran Church’s Deacon, focusing on worship and music. Karen earned B.M. (Sacred Music) and B.A. (Elementary Education) degrees from Pacific Lutheran University. She received a M.A. (Music Education) from Cal State Fullerton. She has taught preschool and/or elementary school since 1976. Karen is married to Dennis, and they have two grown children.
The Rev. James Bessey was called as St. Timothy’s Interim Pastor beginning in September 2019. Pastor Bessey has ministered to several Lutheran churches in Northern and Southern California, including Christ Lutheran, Long Beach (16-1/2 years). He has been an “Intentional Interim Pastor” of the Southwest California Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) since 2012. Pastor Bessey also serves on the Board of Regents for California Lutheran University, Thousand Oaks.
Claudia “Stormy” Correa
Michelle La Rosa