We Have a New Minister!

The board is delighted to announce that in partnership with Prairie Circle Unitarian Universalist Congregation, we have hired a minister!! We will welcome Dave Becker as the full-time minister serving both of our congregations on January 1st.

Dave received his preliminary fellowship this fall, following completion of his program at Meadville Lombard Theological School, where he was granted dual degrees: Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Leadership.

Although he is new to ministry, Dave brings with him a wealth of experience from his 15+ year career in social services and 27+ year career in informal education, including the past 18 years as the Senior Manager of Learning Experiences at the Brookfield Zoo. For most of his adult life he has been actively involved in issues of environmental justice, racial justice, immigration, child advocacy, and the intersection of those issues with faith formation and community building.

Dave has also served as the Director of Religious Education for Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of DeKalb from 2009-2011 and has served there on the finance and fundraising, religious education, worship, and social justice committees. If you would like to learn more about Dave, you can visit his website here: Dave Becker UU Ministry

Although Dave’s official starting date is Jan. 1, you will get your first chance to meet him on Christmas Eve. He will attend both Prairie Circle’s and our Christmas Eve Services so he can start meeting people and seeing how we do things. We hope those of you who attend will take a moment to say hello and show Dave the kind of warm welcome and love we share here at TOLUUC.

Finally, we would like to give special thanks to the many people who have worked to make this day possible: our dearly missed Janet Burns, who was instrumental in reaching out PCUUC and getting the process rolling back in the summer of 2022, our search team, Kathe Lacey-Anderson, Irene Raven, Ivy Sitkoski, and Andy Myers, for their hard work in preparing our congregational profile, screening and interviewing candidates, and having the patience to keep looking for the right person, Leah Mikkelson, who spent many hours working on the complexities of getting our compensation package and contract written, and our friends and partners at PCUUC, Leslie Piotrowski, Scott Helmke, Fran Bates, Mary Honneger, John Young, Trisha Steele, Thad Smith and Joyce DeWitt who joined into this project with open minds, generous hands, and warm hearts. We are so grateful for all of you!

Your Board,

Sue McCowin, Mary Ernest, Ted Funn, Julie Huddle, Mary McClelland, Irene Raven

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