Rev. Stefan M. Jonasson
Rev. Stefan Jonasson is a Unitarian Universalist
minister, historian and organizational development
consultant based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
Stefan was born and raised in Winnipeg, the
youngest son of Victor O. Jonasson and Eileen
Jonasson (née Dipple). Educated at Assiniboine
School and St. James Collegiate, he graduated
from the Collegiate at the University of Winnipeg
in 1979. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at
the University of Winnipeg in 1988, winning the
University Gold Medal in Religious Studies. In
1997, he received the Master of Divinity degree
from the same university, winning the
Governor-General of Canada's Gold Medal for the
highest standing in a graduate degree.
Stefan joined the staff of the Unitarian
Universalist Association in 1991 as District
Executive for Western Canada, serving in that
role until 2002, when the district's responsibilities
were assumed by the Canadian Unitarian Council.
From 1999 until 2011, he was the Director for
Large Congregations, overseeing the Unitarian
Universalist Association's initiatives to better
serve its largest congregations. In 2011, he was
named Director of Growth Strategies and Large
Congregation Development. He brings to this work
extensive training and experience in
organizational development, personnel
management, leadership training, church size
dynamics, conflict management, and
congregational growth and extension.
Stefan was lay chaplain and ministerial assistant
at the Unitarian Church of Winnipeg (1983-89)
and lay chaplain of the Arborg Unitarian Church
(1989-97). Upon completion of his theological
training, he was ordained and installed as minister
of the Arborg Unitarian Church in 1997, where he
served until 2012. Since 1994, he has also been
minister of the Gimli Unitarian Church, a summer
congregation in the town's historic church.
Stefan is past president of The University of
Winnipeg Alumni Association, past chair of the
board of directors of the Boston-based Church of
the Larger Fellowship, and a member of the board
of directors of the UU Humanist Association.
Since 1981, he has been a member the editorial
board of The Icelandic Canadian magazine, with
only a brief hiatus, and formerly served on the
board of directors of Lögberg-Heimskringla.
In 2013, Stefan received the Queen Elizabeth II
Diamond Jubilee Medal in recognition of his
service to the community.
Stefan was president of the Western Canada
District of the Unitarian Universalist Association
(1984-88) and president of Friends of Religious
A progressive in politics, Stefan has been active
in political campaigns for both Liberals and New
Democrats. He has twice sought elected office
himself as a candidate for the local school board,
in 1980 and 2006, but was usuccessful on both
Prior to joining the staff of the UUA, Stefan was
employed in the retail sector as a purchaser,
personnel manager and staff trainer. Stefan and
Cindy (née Nagamori), his wife of thirty-three
years, live in Winnipeg with their daughter
Heather, a music major at the University of
Manitoba. Their older daughter, Brandis, is a high
school art teacher in the city.