Board of Trustees
MDUUC’s Board of Trustees is the governing body of the church, elected by members of the congregation to serve 3-year terms, and eligible for a second consecutive term. The president, vice-president, secretary, treasurer and lead minister together form the Executive Committee, which meets monthly to set the agenda for board meetings at which issues are discussed, actions agreed, and votes taken on church business. There are 10 voting members of the board and a (currently open) youth representative.
Board Policies (pdf)
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBERS
MARK DAVID WATANABE
While I’ve only been a member of MDUUC since 2018, I am a devout Unitarian Universalist who has previously served in numerous capacities at UU congregations, Districts, Regions, and the continental Association over the span of four decades. I was particularly drawn to MDUUC for its public proclamation of a bold mission and its desire to live into it with intention. I hope to help co-create with the congregation a place where all stories of lived human experience are valued as sources of the collective wisdom that drives our aspiration to transform ourselves and our world. My pronouns are he/him/his, I am a solitary resident of Oakland (occupied Muwekma Ohlone land), and I work full-time as a board-certified clinical psychiatric pharmacist for the San Francisco Department of Public Health where my practice is regularly informed by my UU values.
I grew up in the Bay Area and became a member of MDUUC in 2018. I am an active member of the Young Adult Group and have sung with the House Band. On workdays, I am a Montessori teacher for grades 1-3 at the school I attended as a child. I enjoy reading books, singing songs in my car, and snuggling my beloved cat, Sheba.
(She/her/hers) As a 12-year member of MDUUC, Sharon has participated in the community in a number of roles. She served on the Membership, now Welcoming Committee most of those years. She has scheduled greeters, greeted and ushered. Sharon also taught children’s RE and has shown up for the 5:00 am Winter Nights breakfast shift many mornings. Sharon loved Beloved Conversations and is moved by this congregation’s commitment to social and racial justice. She recently completed her second term on the Board and was co-chair of Bid4Love. Away from church, she retired last year from her work as a business systems analyst, and she has become an empty-nester as her daughter, Clare, is attending Southern Oregon University. She lives with her life partner of more than 35yrs, Carol, practically just around the corner from MDUUC.
Davina Smith joined MDUUC in 2018 and is active in the young adults group and the RE program. She has lived in the Bay Area since 1997 and has a degree in Chemical Engineering from UC Berkeley.
In October 2013 I happily joined MDUUC. I have served on the membership committee, the Coffee Committee, Co-chaired the Kitchen Committee and helped organize the Fellowship Dinner. I directed early childhood programs for thirty years, serving on the Board of Directors for two non-profit preschools in the East Bay. My husband Pete and I live in Lafayette with two grey cats. Our son Paul and his family live in Fremont. Our granddaughters light up our life.
Jana and her husband Juan have been members of MDUUC since 2015. They live in Walnut Creek (where Jana grew up) with their two children, Amalia and Xavier. With two school-age children, Jana has been most active with MDUUC’s family and youth religious education (RE) programs. In addition to teaching various RE classes over the years, Jana has also served on the Children & Youth RE committee, most recently as Chair. Jana and Juan have also volunteered as ushers and Winter Nights. Jana is especially grateful to the MDUUC staff and community for the youth programming and the education her children have been able to experience, including Sunday RE, OWL, the Middle School Youth Group, and multiple summer camps. Jana currently works full-time as an attorney for PG&E. In addition to spending time with her family, Jana enjoys puzzles, paint-by-numbers, and long hikes in the open space. Although not a runner herself, she enjoys the many weekends spent watching her husband coach and children compete at cross-country and track and field meets.
Steve and his wife, Elizabeth, were introduced to MDUUC in 2008 through Elizabeth’s parents, members Lou and Jeanne Gelwicks. After many years of attending services, they joined, too, in 2015. The support and guidance provided by members and ministers of MDUUC have been invaluable to their family. MDUUC is a valuable part of their life and community. Their two sons greatly benefitted from the OWL program. Their eldest son, Nigel, participated in the 2018-19 Coming of Age program. Steve has served as the chair of the Grounds Committee and member of the Place Council since 2019. Originally from Marion, Ohio, Steve has lived in the Bay Area for over 30 years. He majored in Management and Accounting in Purdue University and made a career in public accounting and finance. He recently retired after serving as the Chief Financial Officer of a national real estate investment firm, based in San Francisco, for almost twenty years.
(He/him/his) A lifelong UU, Jim and his wife, Kerry, joined MDUUC in 1990 and have been fairly active members. He is presently Place Council Convenor, a Worship Associate, a member of the Facilities Committee, and a long-time member of the choir. He served on the Board from 1997-1999, and is a former chair of the Legacy and Stewardship committees. He was an MDUUC delegate to the UUA General Assembly in Portland last year. Trained as a sociologist, Jim is a retired UC Berkeley professor, and has taught at other universities, both in the U. S. and abroad. Jim and Kerry love to travel, especially to Japan where they lived for several years and consider a second home. They also enjoy camping in the Sierra and hikes with their little dog, Jodi. Jim and Kerry have four adult children, and two young granddaughters, who live with their parents in New York City. Jim is excited to have the opportunity to serve again on the MDUUC Board of Trustees. (This will be his first term)
(He/him/his) Kevin Hsieh is a long-term member of MDUUC, having come in the spring of 1999 when he was looking for a minister to officiate at his wedding to his high school sweetheart, Heather. A lifelong resident of Contra Costa County, Kevin grew up unchurched, and now considers himself a “born again UU.” Kevin has spent most of the past 21 years volunteering in the RE program, especially with the middle and high school youth programming. He is active in MDUUC’s BIPOC group, and for the past 5 years has been a Cub Scout leader. Kevin has previously served on the Board, Committee on Ministry, Nominating Committee, and Worship Associates. (This will be his first term)