Donald Ott

Bishop Donald Ott


United States

North Central Jurisdiction

Bishop Donald Ott is a retired Bishop of The United Methodist Church, having served from 1992-2000.
Bishop Ott was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and attended the following schools:
  • Milwaukee Public Schools
  • Carroll College (now University) (B.A. 1961) in Waukesha, WI
  • Perkins School of Theology, Dallas TX
  • The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Garrett Theological Seminary (now Garrett Evangelical) (B.D./M.Div. 1965) in Evanston, IL
Adrian College, Adrian, MI, Albion College, Albion, MI and Garrett Evangelical conferred honorary degrees, Divinity (1994), Sacred Theology (1997), and Divinity (2012) respectively.
Don Ott was elected to the episcopacy by the North Central Jurisdiction in 1992. He was assigned to the Michigan Area, which includes the Detroit and West Michigan Conferences. He retired in 2000.
At the time of his election as bishop, Don Ott was serving as the District Superintendent of the Milwaukee District, WI Conference.
Prior to that appointment in 1987, he served as pastor at:
  • First UMC, Green Bay, WI
  • Christ Church-United Methodist, Racine, WI
  • Wesley UMC, Kenosha, WI
  • Pleasant Prairie UMC, Pleasant Prairie, WI
He was an Associate Council Director and Council Director of the Wisconsin Conference UMC in the periods of 1974-1982. He was elected a delegate to the General Conferences of 1980-1992 and the North Central Jurisdictional Conferences of 1976-1992.

Bishop Ott was elected to or assigned to the following agencies of The United Methodist Church:
  • The General Council on Finance and Administration (Vice President 1997-2000)
  • The JUSTPEACE Center for Mediation and Conflict Transformation
  • Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary Board of Trustees
  • The General Board of Global Ministries
  • The United Methodist Development Fund (President 1992-1996)
  • United Methodist Communications
In retirement, Don Ott was employed by the Council of Bishops to coordinate the Episcopal Initiative on Children and Poverty, 2001-2004. He served the Council as Retiree Correspondent 2008-2012. He was a long time member of the governing Board of the Wisconsin Council on Children and Families and is a member of the City of Pewaukee, WI Committee on Public Works.
Don and Jan Ott were married December 21, 1963. They are the parents of two children, Denise Lynne Shircel (Thomas) of Kenosha, WI; and Duane Donald Ott (Megan) of Oshkosh, WI. They have seven grandchildren: Nicolas and Madelyn, Brady and Kennedy Ott; Tyler, Amy and Cora Shircel.