The Reverend Esther A. Kramer, PhD

Job Title: 

Associate Provost


(262) 646-6530



PhD, Wayne State University; Communication (1995), MS, University of Wisconsin- Whitewater; Communication (1988) BFA, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; Inter-Arts (1984)


Dr. Kramer’s interest in creating contexts for individuals to grow spiritually, intellectually and personally began with early experiences in the fine and design arts.  Her inclinations toward personal expression and collaboration in the visual arts, music and theatre led her to pursue an undergraduate degree that she believed would enable her to provide support to arts organizations.  Early in her career she recognized the impact of human communication in creative, education and religious organizational settings, noting that a particular culture is sustained or changed through communicative practices.  After completing a master’s degree in communication, Esther began teaching, first students at a community college and in industrial settings in Illinois, then at a large metropolitan university in Detroit, at a women’s college in South Carolina and finally at a multi-campus university based in Macon, Georgia.  In Macon, Esther entered the ranks of higher education administration as an Associate Dean.  She then enjoyed roles that combine the arts with administration as Associate Dean, then Dean of Academic Affairs at two design colleges.  In each leadership role and in every context, her greatest joy has been in supporting individuals who seek to grow spiritually, intellectually and personally.  In January 2016, Esther began her work as Assistant Dean at Nashotah House, and in June she was ordained to the diaconate in the Milwaukee Diocese of The Episcopal Church.  Her role at the seminary involves leading institutional effectiveness efforts, conducting organizational research, and managing process improvements through collaborations with students and colleagues among the faculty, staff and administration.  She is a regular participant in the daily Eucharist and Evensong services.

Esther serves as a deacon and member of the staff at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Dousman.  She and her husband Tom Schlaefer live in nearby Delafield, where they are completing a thirteenth historic home renovation and where they enjoy hosting at variety of gatherings.





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