Calvary’s vestry, the governing body of the parish, shares the leadership of the parish with the rector and consists of 15 members, who are nominated and elected by the congregation for three-year terms. They meet to oversee the temporal affairs of the parish, as well as to support the rector and staff in promoting the spiritual welfare of the parish. In addition, the vestry, in conjunction with the finance committee, is accountable for the fiscal responsibility of Calvary Church. Vestry members also share leadership responsibility for the ministry groups of the church.
Five vestry members are elected annually, so there are five “new” members each year, five who have served one year already, and five who have served two years. The by-laws of Calvary provide that a retiring vestry member is ineligible for re-election to the vestry until three years have lapsed. Once in place, a senior warden and a junior warden are chosen to serve as vestry leaders. Also selected is a clerk that supports the vestry and the warden’s committee. The warden’s committee, which meets monthly with the rector, is comprised of the senior warden, junior warden, treasurer, clerk, and an at-large member.
Vestry meetings are open to all interested in attending. The meetings take place the third Tuesday of the month, at 6 p.m., in Crook Auditorium, unless listed otherwise on the calendar.
Peg Wahl has been a member of the parish for the past 35 years. Over the years she has supported children’s and youth ministries as a formation teacher and youth ministries council member. She has participated in Foyer Groups, supported a knitting ministry, served on the Calvary Endowment Board, served on the West TN Endowment Foundation Board, served as a greeter and as the budget chair of the West TN Episcopal Church Women. In the community, she has been involved in the Mid-South ALS Association, having served on the regional advisory board of the Tennessee ALS Association. Currently, Peg is a VP Controller Property Operations for MAA. She previously served on the vestry from 2006-2008. When she rolled off the vestry, she then utilized her finance skills as our parish treasurer for many years, overseeing the annual budgeting process. She and her husband Dan live in Midtown and are the parents of three adult children.
Kim Kitterman has 30+ years of business experience at WREG-TV in media sales and sales marketing. She is a board member of the American Advertising Federation. Kim attended the University of Mississippi and received a BBA from the University of Memphis. To the vestry, Kim brings her marketing experience and contacts, her business experience, and her organizational and social skills. She was confirmed at Calvary in 2015. Since then, she has volunteered with Room in the Inn, hosted an annual giving party, and served as an usher. As a relatively new member of the parish, Kim feels she brings insight in how to engage other new members and prospects. Kim and her husband Jeff have a blended family of four grown children.
James Aldinger has been a member of the church for almost 20 years and previously served on the vestry from 2008-2010. Over the years he has served on a pastoral care team, as an annual giving caller, and as an adult formation group leader. Currently, he is a Eucharistic Minister, member of the Wedding Guild, and volunteers for Room in the Inn. James received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from the University of Memphis and has worked for the past five years as the director of human resources for Bartlett City Schools. Previously, he worked for 23 years for Shelby County Schools in federal programs and grants, special education coordination, and as a classroom teacher. James uses his expertise in HR, and his experience with budget oversight to benefit the church as a member of the vestry. James and his partner Joe Brandenburg live in East Memphis and enjoy the company of two Cairn Terriers.
Sarah Ball and her husband Erik joined Calvary in 2015, drawn by the “warmth, kindness, and generosity of spirit that abound in the people of Calvary who have made God’s love visible to me in new ways, and make Calvary’s mission a reality.” A former litigation associate at Burch, Porter & Johnson, Sarah attended Vanderbilt Law School and Washington & Lee University. She enjoys generating ideas and ways to improve systems and procedures, and coming up with creative solutions to problems. She says she is “honored to serve and continue to learn from this extraordinary community” as a member of the vestry, and hopes to help “keep up the current momentum/enthusiasm/energy/morale” found in the parish today.
Lisa Buckner has 20+ years of small business experience as the owner of Midtown’s popular InsideOut Lifegym. Lisa received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Western Kentucky University. Her partner Kiersten Schnacke is the principal at Shady Grove Elementary School, where Lisa serves as a volunteer and corporate sponsor for their yearly beautification projects. They have a daughter in second grade. The family began attending Calvary in 2015 and Lisa and Kiersten were confirmed the following year. Lisa says, “From the moment my family and I walked through Calvary’s doors, we felt connected to this church, which we believe serves people in the most crucial and humble of ways.” She believes that Calvary embodies “the all-inclusive, God is Love for everyone values that drew her family here.”
Madge Logan Deacon was baptized at Calvary at age six weeks. Although over the years she tried short stints at other Episcopal churches closer to home, she has “always come ‘home’ to Calvary.” She and her husband Whit have a blended family of four children and five grandchildren. Madge retired from FedEx in 2013 following a 36-year career which honed her project management, project development, and training and facilitation skills. At Calvary, Madge is a member of the Daughters of the King, Holy Spirit Guild, Wedding Guild, Ushers, Eucharistic Ministers, and Lectors. She volunteers with Waffle Shop, the Lenten Preaching Series, and the Salvation Army Bell Ringers. A majority of Madge’s volunteer time is spent supporting the work of Lives Worth Saving and Thistle & Bee.
Bailey Bethell Fountain is a true child of the parish, having been baptized here as an infant, confirmed here as a teenager, and married here to her husband Collin. She is a graduate of St. Mary’s Episcopal School and The University of the South (Sewanee), where she earned a degree in English and a minor in Religion. She attended graduate school at UT and is a Physician Assistant in Pediatric Cardiac Surgery at Le Bonheur. In high school, Bailey was very involved at Calvary and in diocesan youth group activities. She returned to Calvary after college to teach high school formation and serve on the children and youth committee. In 2017, Bailey served on the search committee that brought Rector Scott Walters to Calvary. As a vestry member, she focuses on welcoming and integrating other young adults into the Calvary community “where they can feed their souls and make a difference.”
Gail Harrell has 30+ years of business experience with Maybelline and other cosmetic companies in finance, budgeting, operations, sales, and marketing. She was confirmed at Calvary in 2013. Since then, she has worked at Waffle Shop, facilitated a Journey Class, and joined the Altar Guild. Gail lives downtown, where she is active in the South Main Association and her condo association. A great deal of her time is spent with her two grown children and her six grandchildren. As a relatively new member of the parish, Gail feels that she brings to the vestry the insight as in how to engage other new members and prospects. Gail identifies herself as goal-oriented, self-motivated, and organized.
Nancy Manire has one daughter and two teenaged grandchildren. She is a life-long Episcopalian, having grown up at Holy Communion, graduated from St. Mary’s Episcopal School, and attended services at the University of Memphis’ Barth House and St. Mary’s Cathedral. She “finally followed some old friends to Calvary in the late 1980s,” where she met and married her late husband Jim Manire. In her many years here, she has cashiered and baked the lemon chess pies for Waffle Shop, served as a Stephen minister, volunteered with Lives Worth Saving and Thistle & Bee, and supported Calvary Friends of Music and the choir as a self-proclaimed “choir groupie.” Her undergraduate degree is in History, and at age 40, Nancy went back to school for a Master’s degree in Social Work. She has been a licensed clinical social worker since 1993 and teaches horseback riding and piano lessons.
Heidi Rupke and her husband Dave are parents to three school-age children. They started attending Calvary in 2010 and were confirmed in 2015. She coordinates the Lenten Preaching Series, is a formation teacher, volunteers with Room in the Inn, and practices “that old evangelical discipline of coming every week.” Heidi has an M.A. in International Training and Education. She has taught in elementary, secondary and adult settings on a variety of subjects including English as a Foreign Language in China for two years, and homeschooling her children while living in Australia. She says, “Dave and I have benefited from membership in a church that is well-organized, passionate, open, and deeply rooted in its city context.” As a relative newcomer and a non-Southerner, Heidi believes she brings to the vestry “an outsider’s perspective and questions,” along with “a flexible schedule, enthusiasm, willingness to listen and keen observation.”
Les Smith sings in the Calvary Choir and supports the Friends of Music. A doctor of psychiatry in private practice with an MD from UT Memphis and a BA in Classical Studies from Stanford, Les completed his residency and fellowship at Dartmouth Medical Center. His family, wife Leslie Atwood Smith, daughter Elizabeth and son Ben, joined Calvary when they returned to Memphis from Vermont in 1993. To the vestry, Les brings his expertise in psychological mindedness about how individuals and groups function, as well as knowledge of running a small business. He agreed to serve on the vestry to “’do my share’ in honor of all those who have served in this role in the past, and because he cares about the ‘magic’ that happens inside and outside our walls.”
Ginny Strubing is a life-long Memphian, Episcopalian, and Calvary member. She is often seen in the company of her younger sister Cristina, since the two of them serve on the same altar guild team and have co-taught in the youngest Godly Play atria for the past 15 years. She is the past president of the Women of the Church, served on the vestry from 2000-2002, volunteered for Waffle Shop and Room in the Inn, and has coordinated numerous parish life events like picnics and retreats. An active community volunteer for many years, Ginny has served Les Passes, MIFA, the Emmanuel Center, the Memphis Public Library, the Junior League, On Location Memphis, and BRIDGES. Ginny brings valuable experience as an active member “during many of our diverse stages and transitions.” She describes herself as “an active listener who values inclusion and transparency in church decisions, common ground where possible and appropriate, and work towards consensus on decisions that benefit the church and all who depend on it.”
Dr. Edwin Thorpe did his undergraduate work at Howard University, his pre-med work at Florida A&M, and received a medical degree from Meharry Medical College. He completed his residency in OBGYN at UTHSC and has served on the faculty there. He describes himself as a keen listener, an analytical thinker, and one who possesses strong interpersonal and communication skills. Edwin and his wife Sharon were married at Calvary, have been members for over a dozen years, and serve together as ushers. They have a blended family of four adult children and five grandchildren. In the community, Edwin participates in Leadership Memphis. He also has been a board member of Friends for Life, and an advisor to Hope House. He views serving on the vestry as an opportunity “to assist Rector Scott Walters with the mission of Calvary, to engage with our people and ministries, and to assist with operations of the parish.”
John Webb is a life-long Memphian and Episcopalian. He and his wife Ginny met at Calvary. John is a CPA and recently retired as the CEO of the Trezevant Episcopal Home in Memphis. His experience in business and finance as a CPA, his years of fundraising for foundations, his management experience as CEO of a large not-for-profit institution including oversight of design and construction of expansion are all skills he brings to the vestry. John has been a member of Calvary for over 30 years, during which time he has served as a senior warden of the vestry, a trustee of the Calvary Endowment, and as a founding board member of the Calvary Street Ministry. Now that he is retired, John has time to give “care and love to Calvary Church and its ministry both to its communicants and to the neighborhood.”
Hank Word is a life-long Memphian and Episcopalian who attended Sewanee and graduated from the University of Memphis. After college, Hank wrote software for several years and worked at a small community bank. After working to establish and grow that bank for over a decade, he moved to Evolve Bank & Trust where he is the senior vice-president of IT and operations. He and his family, wife Anna Kathryn, and two school-age children, have been members for five years. To the vestry, Hank brings his operational management and effective communication skills, his problem-solving ability, and his knowledge of information technology, budgeting, finance, and banking. Hank believes that the vestry has a responsibility “to attract and engage new members, reinvigorate existing members to actively participate in ministries, and strategically invest in the long term future of the parish.”