Rev. Michael D. Jones, Pastor
Michael is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ and has been pastor at St. John for over five years. He grew up in a religious family and heard the call to ministry in college. He studied both music and religious studies at Indiana University in Bloomington, IN where he swam on the IU Men’s Swimming Team, earned his Master of Divinity from Harvard University, was ordained in 2009, and served a UCC church in Pennsylvania before coming to St. John. Michael lives in Arlington Heights with his husband, Blake, and daughters Paige and Lucia. Michael has appreciated being part of St. John’s welcoming community, and loves being a pastor.
J. Paul Cochran, Organist
Dr. J. Paul Cochran is organist at St. John United Church of Christ. He has been hooked on church music since the age of six when he performed his first organ prelude. He has served as organist and/or choir director at numerous churches throughout his life. Paul received a Bachelor of arts in Chemistry/Math from Hanover College, a Master of Music in piano from the University of Redlands, and a Doctor of Music in Composition from Northwestern University. He remains active as accompanist, composer, and arranger and as a member of the choir and worship band. Paul appreciates the openness and welcoming spirit of the St. John community. Now retired from a career as an actuary, he resides in Arlington Heights with his wife Lana.
Janice Gilligan, Church Administrator
Janice has been the Church Administrator at St. John since February 2019. Prior to working at St. John, Janice worked at United Airlines for almost 32 years. Her last role at United was Project Manager in Human Resources. As an undergraduate, Janice studied psychology at William Paterson University of New Jersey. When she moved to Illinois after getting married, she earned an MA in Human Resource Management from National Louis University and an MS in Psychology from Roosevelt University. Janice truly enjoys working at St. John.
Alberto Mantovano, Choir Director
This is Alberto’s 3rd year as Choir Director. During the day, he is a Guest Teacher for Crystal Lake School District 47, but he is also an avid musician. In addition to his choir directing responsibilities at St. John, he is the piano accompanist for Encore Music Academy Youth Choirs in Crystal Lake and the Assistant Conductor for the Elgin Symphonic Chorus. He’s previously been invited to sing with the Grant Park Symphony Orchestra Chorus and was a Conducting Scholar for Chorus America Conducting Academy in 2019. He graduated from Butler University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education in 2015. When not working, he enjoys reading, biking, and being with family and friends.
Linda Styzek, Pianist
Linda is the pianist at St. John. She is a 35-year member of St. John and has been the pianist for 17 years. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Accountancy from the University of Illinois in Urbana, Illinois. She currently works as a Center Director at the Mt. Prospect Park District. In addition to being the accompanist for the Chancel Choir and Worship Band, she is also a member of the Handbell Choir and the Coffeehouse Band. Linda lives in Mt. Prospect with her husband, Frank, and has 4 children and 4 grandchildren.
Carin Zachar, Bell Choir Director
Carin is the director of both the youth and adult handbell choirs, and has been a member of St. John since childhood. She received a Bachelor in Music Education from Drake University, a Master in Elementary Education from the University of Illinois, and retired in 2011 after 34 years of teaching elementary band and orchestra. A life long flutist, Carin thoroughly enjoys making music with all of the St. John musicians along with friends and members of the Palatine Concert Band. Carin resides in Palatine with her husband, Steve, and has two grown children and one granddaughter.