Meet MVUU’s Search Team
Tom Bunch, Chair
Tom has been a Unitarian Universalist for 23 years, after a leaflet in a pile he was throwing away told him that there is a church for him, not-a-theist. He loves committees and has served as the chair of Religious Education, Building and Grounds, Stewardship and currently Community Connections. He also serves on the Committee on Ministry. His passion is digging into “With lots of privilege comes lots of responsibility, and lots of obliviousness.” Tom is still working as a molecular biologist/biophysicist studying muscle biology and the causes and treatments of heart failure. He lives with Ruth, his partner and wife of 35 years, two cats, and a huge olive tree. He cures the olives but not the others.
MVUU continues to challenge him to bring more love, with love defined as “the will to extend one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth.” From M. Scott Peck’s book The Road Less Traveled.
Samar has been a UU since the early 2000s when she was introduced to CUUPs (Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans). She was born in Lebanon and spent her childhood moving to various countries in the Middle East and Africa; she grew up influenced by both Islam and Christianity. She moved to the US as a teenager and became a US citizen in her 20’s; as a result she strongly identifies with being an immigrant and having ties to separate cultures. Samar moved to AZ about 13 years ago to check out the hiking, met her current partner, Chris, and ended up creating a life in Tucson. Samar and Chris have two kiddos together (ages 5,2). She is a mental health therapist, currently working in private practice and has a strong interest in learning about trauma and family systems. She’s an avid reader and loves sci-fic/fantasy/comics. At MVUU Samar is involved with the RE program, the Committee on Ministry, and a newly formed group, Speculative Stories: Exploring Fantasy and Science Fiction in Books, Movies, Comics & Games.
Ray has been a UU for more than thirty years, mostly in New Jersey prior to his move to Tucson in 2011. His experience at The Unitarian Society in East Brunswick, NJ included being the Board President as well as other Board positions, Program Committee Chair and several other committee memberships. He and his wife, Michelle, were married by a UU minister in 1988. Prior to his Ministerial Search Committee membership at MVUU he has participated on the Worship Committee, the Ministerial Relations Committee as well as the Sacred Poetry group and the Men’s group. Prior to attending law school in his thirties, Ray was a special education teacher and a social worker after leaving his native Brooklyn, NY. Most of his career involved legal issues in the public mental health field, including teaching Law and Mental Disability at Seton Hall Law School for twelve years. Retired now, his interests include various outdoor activities, such as hiking, nature study and leading birding trips as well as social justice concerns. The MVUU community is of huge importance to his social and spiritual life.
Mary Nell Hoover
For over 25 years, Mary Nell has been a Unitarian Universalist. UU church locations include Akron, OH, San Diego, CA and Tucson, AZ. She has served on the boards of two of the UU churches, as well as on various committees. Each of these churches, at some point, had an interim minister and then a new minister. Each new minister had some practices and beliefs that were very different from the previous one, but each brought new perspectives and excitement to the congregation. She is looking forward to working with the team to find MVUU’s new minister.
Lisa is a lifelong UU, having been raised in a Unitarian congregation in Milwaukee Wisconsin.
Upon her move to Tucson in 1983, she immediately found the UU church of Tucson, from where she still has close friends. She began attending MVUU about 20 years ago. During that time she has been involved in various committees including the pastoral associates, the Board and singing with the choir.
Lisa has a 26-year-old daughter who was raised at MVUU and still attends when she is not working. Lisa is still working full time and hopes to retire within the next year or so. In her spare time, she loves to visit with friends and family.
Pam has been a UU for 22 years, after she and her husband, Jim, discovered the faith. Both lapsed Catholics, their respective evolutions of faith had taken them down different paths, and knew immediately that UU-ism was a perfect fit. Their 2 children, now adults, were both raised in the faith, attending Coming of Age (COA), Our Whole Lives (OWL) and YRUU. In the 3 congregations to which Pam has belonged (Denver, CO, Corpus Christi, TX, and for the past 7+ years at MVUU in Tucson), she has been an active member, serving on numerous committees, including Committee on Ministry, Project Management Team (which oversaw the acquisition and renovation of MVUU’s new home), Music Committee, and Worship Committees. She also taught RE, as a COA leader for 2 consecutive years. In addition to the Search Committee, she currently serves as the Chair of the Pastoral Associates Team (Worship/Lay Leaders) at MVUU. In addition, she was active in the music programs at all 3 churches singing in choir, in an a capella quartet, and the church bands. She is currently a member of UU4X, MVUU’s band. Pam spent her working life primarily as a high school counselor and an attorney specializing in Workers’ Compensation and Social Security Disability cases.
Meet our Minister
MVUU is served by Interim Minister the Reverend Dr. Samantha Wilson
Contact her at email@example.com