2017-18 Board Nominations Announced


The Nominating Committee is charged by the congregation’s bylaws to submit a slate of candidates for vacancies on the USSB Board of Trustees prior to our Annual Meeting. We are very pleased to present the following candidates for your vote on June 4.

In service, the USSB Nominating Committee,

Tracy Freeman, John Hartman, Marisa Pasquini, Andrew Rose, Carol Schwyzer, and Joya Sexton



I have lived in the area for over 20 years, and within the past 5 years I have joined and became active at USSB. I sing in the choir, assist with Sunday services as part of the Worship Committee, and am a member of a Warming Center team. While relatively new to UU, the principles of UU are how I’ve tried to live my 55+ years of life! I am very much inspired by our congregation and enjoy meeting individuals, hearing your stories, and inevitably learning something about myself and the world! I’ve worked in the software field for almost 40 years, starting off with IBM and now with a small firm where we all work from home. Most of the companies I’ve worked for have been successful but several have failed. It was the failed companies where I gained valuable insight into how organizations should, and should not, be run. I have a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Arizona, as the plan was to prepare myself for owning my own business someday.

My experience and love of the community has compelled me to agree to be a nominee for the governing board at USSB. I look forward to helping guide this wonderful organization into the future.


When my first son was born, my wife Tammy and I decided to find a spiritual and ethical home. After some searching, it became clear that Unitarian Universalism was that home for us. We were members at Pacific Unitarian Church in the Los Angeles area for eight years, participating in various leadership and RE roles. We then moved to Santa Barbara and joined USSB in 2006. I have been active at Church since then. For several years I was a facilitator for our Coming of Age (COA) groups; and then facilitating our 6/7th grade group. I also was a member of the Committee on Shared Ministry (COSM). Last year I organized our volunteers for the District Assembly that was held at the Society. When it comes to Social Justice, my interests lie along the immigration, racial, ecological, and economic justice dimensions. When it comes to fun, my interests include: hiking and backpacking, reading, appreciating music in its many forms, and playing tabletop games. My wife Tammy is chair of the Auction Committee and member of the Stewardship Committee.

I am honored to be nominated for the Board position. I really love our Mission and Values and if elected, I will do my best to uphold the Mission and Values of USSB.


Joining USSB in March 2012, I quickly felt that I had come home. Among the activities and groups that I have participated in here are Connection Circles; Wellspring Wednesday (WW) series, as attendee and facilitator; Seventh Principle Action Network (SPAN), as a founding member and coordinator; Children’s Religious Education workshop leader; and WW Task Force member. This year I’ve enjoyed serving a one-year term on the USSB Board of Trustees.

I have lived in Santa Barbara for more than ten years with my husband, Burt. I came here by way of the Midwest, Berkeley, and Los Angeles, where I received an M.A. and completed the course work for a Ph.D. at UCLA in art history with an emphasis on the social and cultural context of works of art. Since that time I’ve been involved in education and engagement towards a more workable and equitable world.

I’m inspired by and committed to our mission at USSB. The opportunity to serve as a Board member for a full three-year term would be an honor and a way to continue to support our values and on-going efforts to weave a net of community at USSB and beyond during these challenging times. The animating song gifted this April to us by our Chancel Choir sums things up succinctly for me: “We’re all in this together.”

Candidates for the Nominating Committee


Melinda Staveley, born January 18, 1944, in Cincinnati, OH, has lived in Santa Barbara since 1993. Melinda lived in Cincinnati to the age 16, and previous to moving to SB she lived in Hamar, Norway; Geneva, Switzerland; Bronxville, NY; Atlanta, GA; Dallas, TX; Kingston, Ontario; Sedona, AZ; and Tucson AZ.

Melinda has a BA in International Relations from Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, NY, and a BS in Nursing and a Masters in Community Health from the University of Arizona. Having taught every level from preschool to college undergrads, Melinda found her passion in her first year of nursing school, i.e. working with people with physical and cognitive disabilities. She retired in May of 2016 as Vice President of Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital, and from a 37-year career in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation, with 23 years with the Rehabilitation Institute, which became Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital in 2007.

Married two times, she has raised five children, now ages 47 to 21, and her granddaughter, Adaezia Hill, who is currently living at home and attending SBCC.

Melinda and Adaezia came to USSB in 1998 when Adaezia became curious about God. Melinda joined that year. Adaezia benefitted from Starr King, Children’s RE, Coming of Age, and YRUU. Her culminating experience was the YRUU trip to New Orleans. Adaezia often said, “I can be who I am with my YRUU friends.”

Melinda is a member of USSB because the community nourishes her spirit, challenges her thinking, and offers her a like-minded group with whom to pursue social justice and equity for all on a healthy planet Earth.

Melinda has served on the Personnel Committee, the CRE Committee, as a teacher and journey guide in CRE, and is currently a member of the Board of Stewards of USSB. She served as Treasurer for two years and is serving in her second year as President of the Board. She will complete two three-year terms and rotate off the Board on June 30, 2017.

Melinda serves as Vice President of the Board of Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics and Chair of its Development and Community Outreach Committee. As a member of the Nominating Committee, Melinda would work with her fellow committee members and members of the Congregation, within USSB bylaws, to encourage and recruit members of the Society to learn about and accept positions of leadership.

I was born in Windber, PA, raised in Fort Worth, TX, and moved to Santa Barbara for graduate school in September, 2003. I have an MA and a PhD in religious studies from UCSB, and I began attending the Unitarian Society with my wife, Reanna, when she was pregnant with our son, Luca, in the summer of 2013. We dedicated him here, and we signed the books ourselves in early 2014. Since then, I’ve been active in Connection Circles, Coming of Age, and YRUU, while Reanna is a member of the Children’s Religious Education committee, and our son Luca is an avid Sunday morning Star King-er and future usher. I’m excited for this new opportunity to be of service to our congregation.


Colin has been filling a vacancy on the Nominating Committee and is running for a full term position. Before this he was on the Board of Trustees. He is a 36-year USSB member and in the past has served as Board President, and as a member of COSM, Planned Giving, Buildings and Grounds, and Association and District Representative. He is interested in supporting the Nominating Committee in its efforts in leadership development at USSB.