February 28, 2017
The MidAmerica Region (MAR) Nominating Committee is pleased to submit the following Committee Report and proposed slate for consideration at the 2017 Regional Assembly Business Meeting.
For the development of the 2017 Regional slate, the committee met monthly via conference call beginning in the fall of 2016 and increased frequency to bi-weekly in January and to weekly in February 2017, with e-mail conversation in between meetings. We used a Dropbox to share, store, and exchange files. We are beginning to gather a good set of documents (including a Maybe Next Year List of potential candidates) and establish a process.
Per our charge in the Regional Bylaws, we reviewed pending vacancies on the Board of Trustees, Nominating Committee, and Midwest UU Conference (MUUC) Board of Directors due to term limits or other reasons. We also contacted individuals whose terms were ending but would be eligible to continue in their current or different positions.
After circulating a Call for Nominations through Regional Communications, the Minister Associations, Congregational Presidents and other lay leaders, Black Lives UU, Liberal Religious Educators and Directors Association, and MidWest Leadership School contacts, the Committee collected nominee questionnaires from those interested in open positions, conducted phone interviews with potential candidates and completed reference checks. We wondered if our emails were reaching their intended persons. We had a of a lack of response from our ministers and presidents list, but when we were able to make contact, we always received a warm reception. We noted some deficiencies with the list of Ministers and Congregational Presidents, as a member of the committee’s congregation wasn’t on the list. We sought recommendations from Regional Staff and non-traditional groups to try to expand the diversity of our nominations. We need more work in the area of diversity.
As you will see from the proposed slate, we are proposing persons for every open position. We are pleased that two members of the Nominating Committee have
volunteered for another term, as have two members of the Board of Trustees, and one member of MUUC.
While this slate is due February 28th, we continue our work per MAR bylaws. We are looking for nominees for Camp UniStar; we have one current vacancy to fill and will have a vacancy to fill by June 30th.
We want to express our deepest gratitude to all those willing to serve, to those who are continuing to serve, and to those whose terms have ended. We would like to extend a special thank you to Tammy Lemmer. She has provided invaluable leadership to the MAR Nominating Committee since its inception. She served as the chair then passed that leadership on and stayed on to help support the committee throughout this year. It is with deep respect for Tammy’s leadership that we recommend her for an at-large position on the Board of Trustees.
PROPOSED SLATE - MidAmerica Region Board of Trustees
We submit the following nominees for three year terms indicated (I = Incumbent, N = New Candidate):
(I) David Lauth, First Universalist Church, Minneapolis, MN
(I) Janis Chaney, Bismarck Mandan Unitarian Universalist Church, Bismarck, ND
(N) Tammy Lemmer, UU Church of Greater Lansing, Lansing, MI (to complete Rev. Cooley’s term, then begin her own term July 1st)
(N) Dixie Collinson, Open Door UU Fellowship, Owensboro, KY
MidAmerica Region Nominating Committee
We submit the following nominees for two year terms indicated:
(I) Kay Slama, UU Church of Wilmar, MN (completed Brian Bach’s term, starting her first term)
(I) Rob Gallegly, Carbondale Unitarian Fellowship, Carbondale, IL
(N) Bob Lovell, UU Church of Greater Lansing, Lansing, MI
Midwest Unitarian Universalist Conference Directors
There are two vacancies on MUUC. To fill these vacancies, we submit the following nominees for new three year terms (2017-2020).
(I) Rae Jane Araujo, Heritage UU Church, Cincinnati, OH
(N) Ted Lau, Eliot Unitarian Chapel, Kirkwook, MO
Katherine Daniels - Quincy Unitarian Church, IL
Kay Slama - UU Church of Willmar, MN
Tammy Lemmer - UU Church of Greater Lansing, Lansing, MI
Kees deWit - UU Congregation of Fort Wayne, IN
Robert Gallegly - Carbondale Unitarian Fellowship, Carbondale, IL
Rev. Brian Chenoweth - UU Church of Lexington, KY
Rev. Martin Woulfe - Abraham Lincoln UU Church, Springfield, IL
MidAmerica Region 2017 Slate of Nominees Biographies and Pictures
Board of Trustee Nominees:
There was one vacancy due to resignation and three Board of Trustee terms are ending. The Nominating Committee recommends Tammy Lemmer to fill the At-large Trustee vacancy immediately. Two of the three trustees are willing to continue and the Nominating committee identified a new candidate. Terms are three years.
(N) Tammy Lemmer, UU Church of Greater Lansing, Lansing (MI) to fill vacancy of At-large Trustee
(2017-2020) Tammy Lemmer has been a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Lansing (Michigan) since 2002. After working for over 12 years in domestic and sexual violence prevention, she now works for the Tri-County Office on Aging, while also doing contract work with the Michigan Department of Education with an emphasis on safe and supportive school environments for LBGT youth. She is very active in community activities, and serves on her local school board. Tammy’s congregational involvement includes volunteering with Children's RE, (including facilitating Coming of Age and Our Whole Lives for Middle Schoolers), Social Action initiatives, and Stewardship and Capital Campaign Committees. Her other leadership roles at UUCGL include serving on the Congregation’s Board of Trustees for five years (with terms as VP for Programs and Secretary,) Nominating Committee, and Program and Policy Transitions committee (for reviewing and updating the congregation's Constitution and Bylaws). She is currently Chair of Denominational Affairs. Within the Region, she is an experienced delegate, and has served as a member and chair of both the Heartland District and the Regional Nominating Committees.
(I) Janis Cheney, Bismarck Mandan Unitarian Universalist Church (ND) for At-Large Trustee
(2017-2020) Janis Cheney joined the Bismarck Mandan UU Church in Bismarck, North Dakota in 1982. She has served on the congregation’s Board of Trustees on several occasions including three terms as President. She is active in all aspects of congregational life focusing on adult RE, new member welcoming and orientation, and worship facilitation. Janis served on the Prairie Star District Extension Committee for nine years, attended General Assembly in Minneapolis and attends district conferences, workshops, and webinars. A Camp Unistar regular for 17+ years, she is married and has 2 young adult daughters. In her day job, she is ND State Director for AARP.
(I) David Lauth, First Universalist Church in Minneapolis (MN) for At-Large Trustee
(2017-2020) David Lauth is a member of First Universalist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He has served as a member and President of the First Universalist Board of Trustees. He currently serves on First Universalist’s Nominating Committee and Pastoral Care Committee, and he has previously served on its Personnel Committee, Music Committee, and Committee on Ministry. He was the District Coordinator for the 2010 UUA General Assembly in Minneapolis. In that role, he worked with the General Assembly Planning Committee, and he recruited and led a team of 200 local volunteers. Prior to the formation of the MidAmerica Region, he served as a volunteer conflict consultant for the Prairie Star District, working with a number of congregations that were experiencing difficult conflicts. He is also a singer/songwriter, and he performs regularly at the services of UU congregations throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin. He is a labor and employment lawyer and mediator, and he has an active volunteer mediation practice. David is passionate about building a strong future for Unitarian Universalism and our work in the world, and he is excited about this opportunity to serve the MidAmerica Region.
(N) Dixie Collinson, Open Door Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Owensboro (KY) for At-Large Trustee
(2017-2020) Dixie Collinson is a member of a lay-led congregation -- Open Door Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Owensboro, KY (ODUUF). Dixie has served her church as Vice President and President of the Board of Trustees and in other capacities, including adult and youth RE, music, assisting with childcare and participating in social justice endeavors. Dixie’s articles appear regularly in the faith section of the local newspaper. Dixie attended Midwest Leadership School in 2015, and actively seeks to build bridges with other faith communities, including the Muslim community, in the Owensboro area. Dixie is a Business Systems Analyst with Owensboro Health Regional Hospital.
MidAmerica Region Nominating Committee:
Three Nominating Committee terms are ending. Two of the three individuals are willing to serve again, one was appointed to the Board of Trustees, and the committee identified a new candidate, all slated for two year terms (2017-2019).
(I) Robert Gallegly, Carbondale Unitarian Fellowship, Carbondale, IL
(2017-2019) Robert T. “Rob” Gallegly lives in Carbondale, IL, and is a member of the Carbondale Unitarian Universalist Fellowship (CUUF). After joining in 2008, Rob served various roles: RE teacher, member and then chair of the nominating committee, trustee, vice-president, member of the choir, computer network consultant, and one of the resident kilt wearers. Professionally Rob is a senior technical project manager for the Hyatt Hotel Corporation. He has worked for/with Hyatt for 13 years. Additionally, he is vice-president of Serenity Data Services, a data security company that holds patents on hard drive destruction technology. Rob serves on the Carbondale Elementary School Board. He also teaches for two martial arts clubs (Aikido, Kali) at Southern Illinois University with his wife Karen. Regardless of his many projects, Rob enjoys spending time with his wife and playing with their son.
(I) Kay Slama, Unitarian Universalist Church of Willmar (MN)
(2017-2019) Katherine M. (Kay) Slama is a consultant in behavioral health and management who has been a member of the UU Church of Willmar MN since 2006. She has served on its board, and as Social Justice Chair for 9 years. Kay participates actively in MUUSJA (MN UU Social Justice Alliance). She presents several services at her church each year, generally on social justice or environmental topics. Kay’s experience includes conference coordination, grant writing and reviewing, clinical psychology, teaching in university professorship positions, membership on professional boards, Executive Director of a mental health center, and author of professional publications, as well as web-based workshops on Dealing with Stress. Many of her current professional activities involve rural services and advocacy. Among other activities, she enjoys the outdoors, photography, and volunteer social justice work.
(N) Bob Lovell, UU Church of Greater Lansing, Lansing (MI)
(2017-2019) Bob Lovell has been a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Lansing since 1980. He has served as Coming of Age Mentor, Ministerial Search Committee Chair, President, and in other roles. He has been an alternate or delegate to the Regional Assembly many times and he and his wife Kathy are Chalice Lighters. He has also enjoyed ushering at the last three General Assemblies and plans to do so again in New Orleans. In addition to church work, Bob is a volunteer with an American Red Cross disaster team and with a bicycle advocacy committee, and is a retired statistician, manager and teacher. He looks forward to contributing to the MidAmerica Region as a member of the Nominating Committee.
Midwest Unitarian Universalist Conference Directors:
There are two terms ending on MUUC. One director is willing to continue and the committee identified a candidate for the other term. We submit the following nominees for three year terms (2017-2020).
(I) Rae Jane Araujo, Heritage UU Church, Cincinnati (OH)
Rae Jane Araujo
(2017-2020) Rae Jane Araujo served as Treasurer of the Heartland District before the formation of the MidAmerica Region. For over 30 years Rae Jane has been a member of Heritage Universalist Unitarian Church in Cincinnati. Current congregational roles: Co-chair of the Universalist Convocation Planning Committee; Labyrinth Arts Festival Steering Committee; Finance Committee; and Delegate to the UU Council of Greater Cincinnati. Past congregational service: Board member; Chair of the Building Committee when the church was built; Member of the Membership, Personnel, Stewardship, Welcoming Congregation, and Ministerial Search committees. Rae Jane is married and has two children and two grandchildren.
(N) Ted Lau, Eliot Unitarian Chapel (MO)
(2017-2020) Ted Lau, with his wife Cindy, has been a member of Eliot Unitarian Chapel in Kirkwood, Missouri, since 1990. Many church activities have been meaningful: leading small groups, visiting the sick as a pastoral care associate, and offering his musical talents as an accompanist and choir member. In 2011-12 he chaired the Ministerial Search Committee, and attended Central Midwest District Assemblies to promote EUC. He assisted the Board in refreshing the church’s mission, vision and values statements, and leads the Healthy Communications Team. Ted looks forward to serving the MidAmerica Region.