Bios

Steven S. Schlosser, Executive Director:
holds a BS degree in psychology (1990) and a MAT degree (1996) in science education. He has also successfully completed comprehensive exams in the PhD program in science education at the University of Iowa; it was through his PhD work that Sheltered Reality was born. Focusing much of his graduate work on intrinsic motivational theory, he wondered if music could be a motivational tool through which audiences could become empowered to take on challenges in the world. This became the topic of his dissertation work – an idea that succeeded beyond his wildest dreams. Founded on the principle that music is a truly powerful motivational force for all of us, Sheltered Reality has grown nonstop in the ensuing years. In 2004, Schlosser was inspired to take the chance of a lifetime and leave his doctoral program to make Sheltered Reality his career.

Mr. Schlosser has been active in music education since the age of 14; he taught private drum lessons through his high school and college years and has a true passion for empowering people of all ages to find rhythm in their lives. As the Executive Director of Sheltered Reality, Mr. Schlosser not only creates percussive routines to the songs that are performed, but also the messages presented during a performance. He is responsible for teaching members all the skills needed to successfully participate in all facets of Sheltered Reality: drumming, choreography, public speaking, as well as leadership, organization, critical thinking, volunteerism and community service. In September 2004, Mr. Schlosser was chosen by the National Jaycees as one of the Ten Outstanding Young Americans for 2004. He had been awarded the Outstanding Young Iowan of the Year by the Iowa Jaycees on November 8, 2003.


Jordan Fratt, Assistant Executive Director:
Jordan is the longest performing member of Sheltered Reality, having been with the group for most of its existence. He has taken drum lessons from Steve Schlosser since he was 6 years old, and is a very talented drummer/percussionist with Sheltered Reality. Moreover, he took on the role of the Assistant Executive Director for the group in 2006. His position includes coordinating shows, scheduling, helping initiate new youth into Sheltered Reality, creating and teaching many of the drum and choreographic routines, grant writing, and currently, learning how to manage the many facets of the ever-growing Sheltered Reality musical mission. Jordan is an inspiration to all the youth in Sheltered Reality as he works to bring the musical mission of Sheltered Reality to life.



Julie Fritz, Board President:
Julie has been involved in Sheltered Reality since 2009 when the group performed at her church. She and her daughter Holly were hooked! Julie was raised on the Mississippi River in Winona, MN. She retired from Mayo Clinic Rochester, MN where she worked and lived for 35 years. She currently lives in Garrison MN where she and her husband built their dream home on a lake. She has been Board Secretary and a site coordinator for several years. In 2015, after Holly went to college, she decided to become a drummer with the Twin Cities site. In addition to Holly, Julie and Kevin have a son Matt, daughter-in-law Kristine, and 3 grandchildren Isaac, Eli and Emma, who love to have Grandma Julie babysit



Janelle Jessen, Board Past President:
Janelle currently works as an accounting and office manager for a communications company in central South Dakota where she has been employed since 1997. As a result of a work project, Janelle was selected as a Champion for Change by the White House in 2012. Her love for music and the arts began when she started playing piano for her local church at age 12, and has been involved in the music and children's ministry at her church for many years. Janelle helps support the school music program and accompanies many local students on their vocal and/or instrumental contest pieces. She has also served on the board for Miller’s after-school program and is currently active in helping with local 4-H activities. Janelle has two daughters who are both drummers in Sheltered Reality and she enjoys supporting them in their academic, music/dance, sports, and other interests. She believes that Sheltered Reality’s Steps for Success can help us all find ways to make contributions to improve our community and world. She has seen many positive changes in the members of her own site as a result of them all being willing to “Take a Chance” and “Believe in Yourself!”




Stephen Jensen, Board Secretary:
Stephen became involved with Sheltered Reality when his partner joined the Twin Cities chapter in October of 2014. Stephen is originally from Canada, where he got his BA with a major in Physics and a minor in Computing. He moved to the USA in 1991 and has lived in the USA ever since. He worked for a company called G&K Services until 2009 and is currently active with another committee as a board member. Stephen became Board Secretary in January of 2016.




Linda Guldner, Board Vice-President:
Linda has been active with the Des Moines Sheltered Reality group since March 2008. Linda's involvement in the group has been because she believes the Steps of Success teach the youth a positive way to live in a very negative world. It is a place the youth can go and always feel accepted, loved and needed. It gives them a family of friends that is close even though they are miles apart.

Linda attended American Institute of Commerce, where she received 2 degrees in Business Management and Accounting. Linda currently holds a Series 6 license. Linda has worked for Principal Financial Group since September 2000 where she holds the position of Project and Training Coordinator for the Principal Funds Call Center. Linda was in the United States Air Force for 4 years in the medical administration field. Linda is actively involved in her church confirmation as a small group leader, active in small group worship and other church activities. Linda has been in Girl Scouting for over 27 years where she was a Girl Scout, leader of a troop and held council positions of Service Unit Manager and Delegate to the Board. As a girl she received the highest honor - 1st class Girl Scout in 1980 which is the equivalent to the Gold Award as it is known today.


Brenda Pelzer, Board Treasurer:
Brenda received a Bachelor of Applied Studies and Certificate in Nonprofit Management in 2017. Over the years, she has held many offices on her local church administrative board and currently serves as the Lay Leader. She is also active in her church women’s organization. Over the years she served as a church musician, Sunday School teacher, and director of the children’s choir. Brenda took an active role in various community and school organizations while raising her family. She served as the treasurer for a non-profit sports organization when it was founded in 2000. Brenda has been a leader in the local Community Youth Group for many years. For 13 years, she served as the organizational leader for the local 4-H club. Brenda has been employed at Liberty Communications in West Liberty, Iowa for 21 years, where she holds the position of IT Specialist. Previously, she was employed at Muscatine Power and Water in Muscatine, Iowa for 13 years, where she held positions in the Purchasing and IT departments. She is married and has three children.


Alex Schuck, Director of Social Media:
Alex received his BBA degree in Entrepreneurial Management from the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa. During college, Alex was active in several organizations such as Tippie Scholars, U of I Honors group, Delta Sigma Pi Professional Fraternity, and Arts Enterprise. All these organizations helped him to gain more experience in the field of business. With this background, he hopes to create innovative ideas to keep Sheltered Reality growing. He has been with Sheltered Reality since 2001 and has been leading practices and traveling the Midwest to perform in and lead shows. Alex likes to make everyone around him feel like they are in a free, fun-filled environment to help encourage others to be themselves and succeed.



Donna Lair, Vice-President of Missions:
Donna Lair is excited at the chance to encourage all the SR sites to succeed at mission work.. With a pastor for a father and a nurse for a mother, she learned early to do good for others. This carried on into her college career at Buena Vista College where she was an Elementary Ed/Special Education major, and volunteered throughout the college and local community. Donna worked as a teacher of middle school and high school students, mainly with emotional or behavior disorders, for 15 years. She then spent 3 ½ years cooking at a tea house before returning to education as a learner assistant, enjoying working with students, but not having to do the paperwork!

Donna has had a lifelong love of the arts. Sheltered Reality is a great mix of all her loves: kids, music, dance and mission. She is married and has one daughter, Kelli, who is the reason Donna has become involved with SR! Donna is also kept busy volunteering in her local community with Girl Scouts, Relay for Life, church, youth sports, youth art programs, and community education. Donna feels it’s a true blessing to be able to do for others through something as exciting as Sheltered Reality.


Marianne Reininger, Vice-President of Missions:
Marianne has been involved in Sheltered Reality since 2007 both as a drummer and a site coordinator. She has enjoyed drumming with each of her three children in SR, currently with her son. She appreciates the supportive environment Sheltered Reality provides for each drummer - a safe and loving place to enjoy a shared passion for drumming while spreading the message that we can all empower someone else to succeed if we take a chance and reach out. Participation in Sheltered Reality has allowed for travel opportunities, opened up the chance to make new friendships, and introduced Marianne and her family to many varied mission activities to take part in. When she’s not drumming, Marianne enjoys kayaking and cross country skiing, plays many various instruments for pleasure, school and church functions, and loves to read. She has a masters degree in education and has taught kindergarten for over 30 years.


Kelli Lair, Missions Assistant:
Kelli has been involved with Sheltered Reality since 2008, and has been leading practices and traveling the Midwest to perform in and lead shows. Kelli’s favorite part of Sheltered Reality is having the opportunity to meet new people across the country and working with new members to learn their first few songs. Kelli is a music teacher who has had the opportunity to take a chance in her own life by teaching students for the inaugural year of the Guyana Lutheran Music Academy in Guyana, South America. Outside of Sheltered Reality, Kelli enjoys spending time reading, doing craft projects, and playing many various musical instruments, such as the ukulele which she is currently teaching herself to play.



Dee Harr, New Member Assistant:
Dee has been a member of SR since July 11th, 2006 and she has always had an interest in music Besides the drums, she has played the clarinet, keyboard, and guitar. She works full time at a cafe & bakery and loves sharing her passion of food with her customers and also her coworkers. Dee is a major part of the Sheltered Reality family especially because of her instant connection to others, especially those in need. Dee's ambition in life is to help people succeed at their goals and dreams, and to see them strive to be the inspiration.




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