President - Mike Chambers
I stumbled upon UUMAN in 2013, attending a guitar seminar by someone who had rented Fellowship Hall. I Googled the church later, and was a little amazed to learn there was a church like UUMAN near me. I became a member in 2014. I met my wife Donna in UU101 class, and got to know her from volunteering in the Coffee House kitchen. Ours was the first wedding performed by Reverend Dave Dunn. I’ve taught RE and OWL at UUMAN, and served as ushering coordinator, Family Promise chair, Chili Cookoff team member, Stewardship Chair, and on the RE Committee and MCY Council. I consider UUMAN my community and a source of truth and compassion in a sometimes cold world. I look forward to serving on the Board with a great team.
Vice President - Martin Poteralski
My wife Erin and I were married in a UU church, and were members of a UU church in suburban Richmond, Virginia for several years while our two children were young. In 2017, when we moved to Georgia, we also found a new spiritual home at UUMAN.
Since joining UUMAN, I have been involved with a few different committees including the annual Auction committee and Stewardship. Our children have been growing and learning through programs such as RE and OWL.
We especially value the connections we have made at UUMAN, and our impact on the community in which we live. I hope to build upon the great work others have done before as a member of the Board.
Past President – Miriam Patanian
I joined UUMAN with my husband and 2 children in 2011—we had just moved here from Olympia, Washington, and knew we’d need to look a bit harder in Georgia to find our tribe. We’ve loved getting to know other members and friends of UUMAN—whether through coffee hour after service, trying to outbid them during the annual fundraising auction, or walking with them on one of our many local trails around here. I’ve enjoyed getting to know the youth of UUMAN through volunteering to teach Religious Education (RE) and the Our Whole Lives (OWL) sexuality education curriculum to our youngest children.
I served as chair of the Program Council, learning about the extensive ministries that exist here, which helped me, as a member of the search committee, communicate more clearly what our congregation needed as we sought a new minister. I had the privilege of working with several other members as UUMAN embarked on defining its core values, updating its Mission and Vision, and recommitting to our refreshed covenant. I am eager to take this next step in serving UUMAN and look forward to learning and growing with our beloved community.
Listen to a bonus UUMAN Podcast episode, where Miriam explains UUMAN governance and shares her story of discovery.
Treasurer – Jennifer Phillippi
I have been a member of UUMAN since 2014. Since that time, I have served as both a member and the chair of Earth Ministries, taught 4th/5th and 8th/9th RE, and have helped organize and participate in a variety of UUMAN events. My professional background includes an Associate of Science degree in Respiratory Therapy, a bachelor’s degree in Actuarial Science, and a master’s degree in Business Administration.
I am the Chief Operating Officer of Consolidated Risk Solutions, LLC where I am also a principal. In that role, I am responsible for running all of the operations as well as creating and maintaining our budget, preparing quarterly financial reviews, and presenting to the rest of our executive team. I am a wife to Kyle, and a mom to Kyson (14) and Kyra (12). We live in Roswell with our two rescued greyhounds, Jack and Sassy. Other than my family, my passions include environmental activism, nutrition and healthy eating, running, yoga, and reading. As an enneagram 1, you can expect me to be conscientious and ethical, to strive to improve things, and to always hold myself to high standards.
Listen to the UUMAN Podcast bonus episode, for an interview with our Treasurer about her role and vision for this two year term.
Secretary - Laurie Wheeler
Like many people, my husband Mark and I began attending UUMAN when our children were young and we were looking for a spiritual home for our family. When I discovered Unitarian Universalism, I felt at home immediately, and jumped right in to the life of the congregation. Our two children grew up at UUMAN, attending RE and OWL classes, and are now young adults.
I have served in many roles at UUMAN, including chairing and participating in a variety of committees, serving on the board, teaching RE, singing in the choir, and directing the family choir.
Ours is a faith community that calls us to live our principles, and I am thankful to have found my spiritual home at UUMAN, where I am challenged, supported, and surrounded by this beloved community as I strive to grow and to live my faith.
Trustee for Special Projects - Margriet van de Steeg
We became members of UUMAN in 2009 after moving from Canada. We are still very happy we found UUMAN to be able to connect with a liberal faith community. We loved seeing our four kids (Duco, Maud, Lara, and Troy) go through the UUMAN Religious Education and OWL programs. The UUMAN community and the programs have supported us in raising our kids to be (more) confident in who they are and what they stand for.
I have served on the Personnel Committee and Nomination Committee and look forward to being actively involved in the UUMAN Community and serving on the Board. Since leaving the corporate world in 2019, where I worked as CFO and HR Manager, I went “back to school,” graduated with an MSc in Financial Planning from UGA last August, and became an Accredited Financial Counselor. I am providing Financial Coaching and Counseling through my new company, Financial Clarity, and through non-profits.
If you are wondering where my accent comes from, I was born and raised in the Netherlands. With being Dutch comes directness, conscientiousness, and (some) stubbornness.