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Palace City Profile: Answering the Call in Mitchell

Scott grew up in Howard, and Jill grew up on a farm near Scotland. They met in the summer of 1985.

Jill & Scott Munger.jpg
Scott and Jill Munger. (Courtesy photo)

EDITOR'S NOTE: Palace City Profiles is an ongoing series of community members’ stories, introducing us to our neighbors and the personalities that call Mitchell home. If you have suggestions for individuals or families with a great story, please contact Karen Whitney at 996-1140 or kwhitney@mitchellsd.com.

Vermillion’s long-time residents (27 years) Scott and Jill Munger are now making Mitchell their new home. A change of residence is not the only thing new for Scott. After owning and running a printing and publishing business for over 25 years in Vermillion, South Dakota, Scott says, "I'm now in my second career as a pastor."

Recently installed at First Lutheran Church as senior pastor, Scott is busy as a man can be in his new duties. Jill is also a very busy lady working for the South Dakota Department of Health as a registered nurse. She received her Bachelor of Nursing degree from Augustana University.

Scott first earned his Bachelor of Science degree in printing and journalism from South Dakota State University in Brookings, and then a Master of Arts degree in communications from the University of South Dakota in Vermillion. When he decided to take a different career path, he earned his Master of Divinity degree by attending Sioux Falls Seminary and Lutheran Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Scott said, “Working in full-time ministry is something I have always felt called to.” He spent a full year in seminary as a 22-year-old young man and discovered that he wasn’t quite ready for parish work. Thirty-one years later he decided he was ready.

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Scott grew up in Howard, and Jill grew up on a farm near Scotland. They met in the summer of 1985. "We were both camp counselors at Outlaw Ranch, a Lutheran outdoor Bible camp near Custer," said Scott and Jill. They return to Outlaw Ranch yearly, spending a week of their time. "We've been doing that for almost 25 years," quipped Scott.

During their marriage, Scott and Jill added two children to their family. Both are now grown and on their own. Daughter Kayla is a pediatric resident at the Mayo Clinic, and their son Jay attends Black Hills State University.

Both Jill and Scott are so happy to be in the Mitchell community. They say, "It is a great size with some really neat business offerings.

"We're looking forward to exploring Mitchell further. So far, we've been really impressed with the many walking and biking trails."

Jill and Scott are also looking forward to attending Dakota Wesleyan University basketball games and Mitchell High School events. During the coming winter months, they hope to do some cross-country skiing as well. Scott will follow the Vikings, and Jill enjoys the quiet reading time. In the summer, they enjoy golf, the Twins, biking, and walking the trails with their dog, Finn.

Scott reminisces, "When I was growing up, coming to Mitchell was always a fun day. I have great memories of going to Herter's with my dad, and I always liked stopping at Harve's Sport Shop when I was a high schooler."

Scott said he remembers also attending a Juice Newton concert at the World's Only Corn Palace in the early '80s. He chuckled, "Not everyone can say that!"

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