All are welcome here!

Alki UCC Staff and Leadership

Alki UCC Pastor  

Rev. Emily Tanis-Likkel

Great news! Our prayers for a new pastor have indeed been answered. Reverend Emily Tanis-Likkel is from West Seattle and embodies a fascinating variety of experience, as you will see in her personal introductory letter below. Joe Mitter, Council Moderator 7/5/2022

Dear Alki UCC,

I am so excited to be your new Pastor!

I was ordained in 2005 at Eagle Harbor Church, UCC in Bainbridge Island and served as their associate pastor for seven years. Next, I started a new church, Tapestry, following a Holy Spirit spark of discernment moment with none other than Rev. Diane Darling.

After a move to West Seattle, my experiences included Minister of Spiritual Play at Valley and Mountain United Methodist Church, preschool teacher, teacher of middle school specialist classes such as drama and creative writing, and Family Life Minister at St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church in West Seattle.

As your new Pastor, I am coming home to the United Church of Christ and home to pastoral ministry. I come to you, ready to listen to your experience, and we will listen together to our still-speaking God.

I live in West Seattle in a multigenerational household with my spouse, two teenagers, and my parents. My spouse, Brett, works for T-Mobile, and we have been married for twenty-five years. My daughter Eva is nineteen and just finishing up her first year of online college through North Seattle. She spends much of her time with books and crochet hook. My son Day is fifteen and just finished his 9th grade year at Summit Atlas High School and drivers training. He enjoys video gaming and hanging out with friends. My family is known for our giant batches of popcorn that we have at least three times a week. We love spending time together over dinner, watching movies, and playing games.

I write, teach, preach and lead from a foundation of embodied spirituality, expansive theology and wonder. I am trained in Nia, a holistic movement practice, which has informed my own spiritual practice of embodying Scripture, which is the basis of the book that I have been writing. I also love to read books. My latest read is How to Wash the Dishes by Whidbey Island author Peter Miller. “You will know your state of mind when you wash the dishes. Your care or your impatience; your attention or your distraction. You will see yourself, at that moment, clearly.” So good!

I am very much looking forward to getting to know each one of you. I’m grateful to come alongside you in ministry.

In hope,
— Pastor Emily

Alki UCC Office Manager 

Larisa Wanserski

In-Person Office Hours: 
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday: 8:30 am to 12:30 pm
Thursday: 12:30 to 4:30 pm
and by appointment

Larisa started as our Office Manager in 2005.  She does it all! She manages the church office, keeps us organized, publishes our newsletters and weekly worship bulletins/slides, arranges for building use, answers your questions, keeps track of all the different groups using our building, etc. If you have any questions about anything to do with Alki UCC, Larisa will help you find the answer.

Alki UCC Church Council

In our congregational setting, the business affairs are led by lay leadership within the church membership.  The affairs of the church, except for matters specifically required to be decided by the membership, shall be managed by the church council. The church council is responsible for supporting the spiritual and financial health of the church, as well as directing the church’s mission, strategic planning, policymaking, and other duties assigned to it by the congregation.  


Elected Officers of the Alki UCC Church Council July 1, 2022-June 30, 2023

Moderator, Joe Mitter

In church matters, the moderator leads and performs  duties commonly associated with the office of a board of directors. The moderator presides over meetings of the congregation and the church council. 


Vice Moderator, Shannon Peterson

The vice moderator shall act in the place of the moderator or in a specific responsibility delegated to, and accepted by, the vice moderator.


Secretary (Clerk), Charlie Hinckley

The secretary, in conjunction with the office staff, maintains all corporate and membership records of the church, including minutes of membership and church council meetings, issues letters of transfer, and ensures timely notices of church meetings. 


Treasurer, Gary Gesellchen

The treasurer oversees the church’s finances in coordination with the church council by managing annual budgets, coordination and reporting of church income and expenses. 


Ministry Team Representatives

All other members on the church council represent their ministry team. They report on team activities and may have duties assigned to their team by the council.


Operations Manager (open)

Interim operations managers: Shannon Peterson (vice-moderator) and Joe Mitter (moderator)

The operations manager shall be appointed by the council. The operations manager provides support for issues and activities related to finance, budget, personnel, building and grounds, insurance, and church policies and procedures.