St. Mark's Leadership Team

  • The rev. dr. don baxter, Vicar

    Father Don Baxter came to St. Mark's in 2010. He attended The Pennsylvania State University graduating with a B.A. degree in English literature. He then attended Hahnemann Medical College of Drexel University and received his M.D. degree. While in medical school he joined the U.S. Navy and completed his internship at Bethesda Naval Hospital. After a tour aboard the USS Guadalcanal, he returned to Bethesda Naval Hospital and completed his residency in dermatology, and stayed on as a staff dermatologist at Bethesda until leaving the Navy in 1992.

    In 1992 he became an Erie resident and joined Dermatology Associates of Erie where he is now a partner. He attended the Episcopal Diocese of Northwestern Pennsylvania School for Ministry and was ordained a deacon and then a priest in 2002. He has served congregations in Lake City, Fairview and Erie.

    Don has been married to U.S. Magistrate Judge Susan Paradise Baxter for 37 years. They have two grown children, Emily and Edward.

  • craig m. dressler, associate for parish life

    Craig Dressler, Associate for Parish Life, has been at St. Mark’s since April 2014. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Religion (Christian Tradition) and Music (Pipe Organ) from Westminster College and holds a Master of Theological Studies degree from the Boston University School of Theology where he focused his studies on the Hebrew Scriptures. Craig is passionate about Biblical literacy and fostering ecumenical relationships.

    Previous to coming to St. Mark’s, Craig served on the staffs of St. Dunstan’s Episcopal Church (Dover, MA), the Episcopal Cathedral of St. Paul (Erie, PA), and Fairview Presbyterian Church (Fairview, PA).  

    Craig resides in Erie with his wife, Jill, and their son, Grayson.  

  • Carly h. rowe, associate for programs & development

    Carly Rowe joined the staff of St. Mark's in the fall of 2010. She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and Communication Arts from Thiel College and a Master of Arts Degree in Religious Education from Gannon University. Carly has served both the diocese and the Episcopal Church on a national level in various capacities. Prior to her work at St. Mark's, she served on the staff of the Episcopal Cathedral of St. Paul in Erie, PA.

    Carly resides in Erie with her husband, Sean, and their daughter, Lauren.

  • The rev. richard nygaard, deacon

    Richard L. Nygaard was ordained to the Holy Order of Deacons in June of 2016. He was awarded a Bachelor of Science degree cum laude from the University of Southern California in 1969. In 1971, he received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Michigan Law School. In 1993 he was awarded a Doctor of Laws honoris causa from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania for constitutional drafting and consulting on behalf of various Central and Eastern European countries following the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    He practiced law in North East, Pennsylvania for nine years. In 1981, he was appointed to the Court of Common Pleas of Pennsylvania by Governor Dick Thornburgh. In 1988, President Ronald Reagan appointed him to the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He is now a Senior Judge and has chambers in Erie and Philadelphia.

    He and his wife, Martha Jean, have three children, nine grandchildren, and one great-granddaughter.

  • kate thiem, director of music

    Kate is the Music Director of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance from Mercyhurst University and a Master’s degree in Classical Voice from New York University. Kate is a music teacher in the Millcreek School District.

    Kate has performed with the Erie Philharmonic, Westmoreland Philharmonic, Butler Symphony, and Erie Chamber Orchestra. She has performed at the Riverside Inn, with the comedy troupe In All Seriousness, and with the Erie Opera Theatre.  

    Kate has been seen on the Erie Playhouse stage in many productions over the past eleven years, most notably in Beauty and the Beast (Belle) , Joseph...Dreamcoat (Narrator), Tarzan (Jane), Spamalot (Lady of the Lake), Shrek (Fiona), and Les Miserables (Fantine). She also has directed several youth musicals, freelances as a piano accompanist, and enjoys playing percussion/oboe in orchestra pits.

    In her spare time, Kate enjoys rooting for the Pittsburgh Penguins. She is also an avid runner and writer.