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Class of '81, Bill Rohlfing

Posted by Jennifer Beasley on

 

This week, we were blessed with a visit from Grace Lutheran School Alumnus, Bill Rohlfing, class of '81. He shared his experience with our middle schoolers in a class presentation on voiceovers. Recently, he has been the voiceover in commercials for State Farm and Purina. 

My interview with Bill  Rohlfing, illustrates our mission at Grace Lutheran School, to bring in, build up, and send out disciples of Jesus Christ.

Thank you Bill for sharing your time, experience and thoughts with us! 

What years did you attend Grace Lutheran School? 

Senior Kindergarten through first grade. Then returned for seventh and eighth grade.  I graduated in '81.

What did you love about Grace Lutheran School? 

I loved the extended family feeling of Grace. I was jealous that the rest of my siblings got to do all of their pre-high school education at Grace.  

Describe one of your favorite teachers and tell why he/she was a favorite. 

I distinctly remember Wendy Will, my senior kindergarten teacher. She was such a caring teacher. 

Paul Bouman was my social studies teacher in seventh and eighth grade, as well as the Music and Choir Director. He was and amazing person who was someone able to combine the qualities of tough love with a steadfastly compassionate presence. He knew how to motivate us kids to stay in line, and yet he was always kind. That quality combined with his musical talents, was the reason we won so many choir competitions. 

In what ways have you grown in your faith as a result of your experience at Grace Lutheran School? 

My faith-based education at Grace greatly influenced the person I am today. The Christian principles, and the examples of such great people as Paul Bouman, Jerry Koeing, Lyle Mortensen, Dean Lueking, and Marilyn Busse stay with me to this day.   

I'll also never forget Sarah (Lueking) McCabe, Karla (Koenig) Koehne, and Lauren Wilkie who were in my confirmation class.

At Grace Lutheran School, we talk about an education where children grow in Faith, Academics and Character”.  How did you experience this kind of education at Grace? 

Having been transferred to public school in the middle of 1st grade, those qualities of faith, academics, and character became all too clear to me. Not to discount too much the education I received in public school, the Christian teachings and values present at Grace, made it feel like coming back home when I returned in seventh and eighth grade. Again, the quality of people and the lessons I learned went well beyond academics at Grace.  

How do you feel that Grace Lutheran School prepared you for graduation, college, career and life? 

Being blessed with a strong sense of family is one of the best ways to thrive in life. Beyond my immediate family, feeling I am a part of the legacy of Grace, has always been a comfort in my life.  

What opportunities did you experience at Grace Lutheran School that you don’t think you would have gotten to experience anywhere else? 

First, the experience of being affiliated with a church and school that generations of my family also attended is singular. Beyond the education and lessons in character through example I've already covered, I’d have to say that the music education I received really jump-started what I was able to continue in high school and college, and which ultimately played a role in what I’ve chosen to do for a living.  

What would you say to a prospective family considering joining Grace Lutheran School? 

A Christian organization that affords children the opportunity to grow in faith, academics, and character offers the benefit of role models who cultivate a sense of family through congregation that can be an important catalyst for any young person during their formative years.  

We love hearing from our Alumni. Please share your story with us. To learn more, contact Jennifer Beasley at

Tags: alumnus

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7300 Division Street | River Forest, IL 60305 | (708) 366-6900