Vestry Candidates

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Vestry Candidates

During the worship service on Sunday, Nov. 14, Calvary parishioners will elect five people to serve three-year terms on Calvary’s vestry.


Calvary’s nomination committee, comprised of 2020 Sr. Warden, Kim Kitterman, and the five third-year vestry members (James Aldinger, Lisa Buckner, Bailey Fountain, Nancy Manire, and Ginny Strubing), presents the following slate for election to the 2021 vestry.


Additional nominations may be made until 24-hours before the election on Sunday, Nov.14. If you know someone you wish to nominate, please contact Sr. Warden James Aldinger (901-831-8564) no later than 10 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 13. Please be sure to obtain that person’s permission first, and then find two other parishioners with which to make the nomination.


Cathy Awsumb (74) was baptized and confirmed at Calvary. Over her many years in the parish, she has served as a Stephen Minister, a member of a Pastoral Care Team, and on the Adult Christian Education committee. She also sends birthday cards to parishioners as a part of that ministry team. Cathy was raised in the public schools in Memphis – Snowden and Central. She later graduated from Rhodes College (then Southwestern at Memphis) with a BA degree and from the University of Tennessee School of Social Work with a master’s degree. Cathy says, “the majority of my work life was with The University of Memphis (30 years) where I worked in the Office of Research Support, assisting faculty in the development and submission of federal and other grants for the support of their research. I worked with all of the disciplines/departments at the university in this effort.” After retiring from The University of Memphis, she has volunteered at Baptist Memorial Hospital and the Church Health Center. She considers herself honored to stand for the Calvary vestry. “I feel like Calvary has done so much to support not only its congregants but the Memphis community, particularly downtown.” Cathy says, “I felt the positive presence of Calvary so much during the pandemic. The church immediately stepped up and kept us connected to the Church and to each other – an amazing job. I would like to give back to Calvary by serving on the vestry.” As a member of the vestry, Cathy “is interested in contributing to discussions about the following: (1) ideas for adult education programs at Calvary, (2) maintaining and developing strong community outreach programs and (3) ideas for strengthening connections among Calvary congregants.”


Ben Boeving (48), who graduated from the University of Tennessee, is “a proud but currently humble Vols fan.” He works primarily at Rhodes College as a Certified ADHD Coach advising students who struggle with learning differences. Ben and his wife Alison began attending Calvary in 1998, shortly after they married at Alison’s “big Methodist church in middle Tennessee.” Ben grew up Catholic, so the couple was looking to find a “hybrid” church as Ben describes “where they would feel both comfortable and adequately “churched.” His aunt, Lisa DiScenza, attended Calvary at the time and played a big part in leading them downtown. Ben says, “we were immediately drawn to then-rector, the Rev. Doug Bailey, and attended his popular Wednesday night Journey Class where we got to know many other people new to the community. Calvary provides a feeling of acceptance that is both unexclusive and unconditional. We love that Calvary’s mission goes far and beyond something you would read on a website; it is alive and practiced every day.” Ben and Alison are raising three active children at Calvary: Davis (19), Sophie (15), and Cooper (12). In his over twenty years at Calvary, Ben has served in the Shepherd Ministry and as a Wednesday night Formation Leader, has participated on a discernment committee, and served as an EYC leader and Sunday School teacher. Ben says, “during the pandemic, Calvary did an amazing job using innovation and creativity to help keep us safe while still feeling connected. We all enjoyed the convenience of churching in our pajamas but soon realized that nothing could replace the spiritual energy and feeling of community and human connection in Calvary’s Nave.” When asked why he wants to serve on vestry, Ben says, he “would like to focus my energies on helping collaboratively develop new and innovative ways for members to connect; I have a particular interest in the children and youth at Calvary who play a significant role in our future. Additionally, I am intrigued by the potential of a capital campaign and how to best utilize our campus to serve ourselves and our community.”


Len Grice (70), retired healthcare marketing professional and former adjunct professor of marketing, was introduced to Calvary by his wife Nina when they married in 1995. Len says, “Calvary is a blessing to me and my family. It is a place where we can come and worship our God and be a part of a church family.” Over the years, Len has served as a member of the vestry and the communications committee and is a graduate of the Education for Ministry program. He currently serves as a Eucharistic Minister, lay reader, and Emmanuel Meal volunteer. Additionally, he supports the Rev. Paul McLain as the co-chair of the Pastoral Care Committee with Martin Jellinek. He says, “I take great pride in watching our Care Teams come together each week to handle their weekly assignments in touching those parishioners who are in need of their church family to reach out to them. It warms my heart when I read a weekly report from a member who tells us how they enjoyed a visit with a parishioner or when we get a thank you note from a parishioner who has been touched by a Care Team member.” When asked why he is interested in vestry service, Len says, “being a member of the vestry is just one of many ways we can serve our Church. And it takes many sharing their talents to keep Calvary…Calvary. We must have volunteers for many jobs.” He continues, “this is where the vestry comes in. A building needs to be maintained, staff needs to be hired (and paid), the building needs to have its heat or ac running, etc. And to top it all off, a structure needs to be in place that makes sure this all happens. The vestry, along with staff, help organize and provide structure to make sure that Calvary is making God’s love visible in downtown Memphis!” In the community, Len has supported the Samaritan Counseling Center as VP of the board of directors and served on the diocesan finance committee. Currently, he serves on the board of the Pickwick Yacht Club and as an officer of the Delta Amateur Radio Club.


Shannon Tucker (53) graduated from the University of Mississippi with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing. For the past 17 years, he has worked in regulatory compliance in the financial services industry. Shannon grew up in this diocese at St. Elisabeth’s where he was very active. He was confirmed at Calvary with his family in a diocesan confirmation in 1981. As an adult, Shannon visited Calvary at Easter in 2003, the year before he got into recovery. The sermon that day was given by Renee Miller and Bob Hansel together and Renee ended it by singing the last line of the Bette Midler song, The Rose.

When the night has been too lonely
And the road has been too long,
And you think that love is only
For the lucky and the strong.
Just remember in the winter
Far beneath the bitter snows,
Lies the seed that with the sun’s love
In the spring becomes the rose.

Shannon describes it as “a beautiful spiritual experience for me and I connected so much with those words, plus, who knew you could sing a pop song from the pulpit? When I was ready to come back to the church in 2004, I remembered how that sermon affected me and visited again. It took about 3 weeks of visiting before I filled out a visitor card, but once I did, I was hooked.” As soon as he joined, Shannon began singing as a tenor in the Calvary Choir. He says, “some of my most spiritually connected moments have come with the Calvary Choir.” In the last few years, his mother Judy has also joined the choir. Shannon has been a team leader on the Pastoral Care Committee for many years and also has served on the search committees for both Organist-Choirmaster Kristin Lensch and Rector Scott Walters. He says, “I can be found at Calvary many days wandering the building and supporting various people and projects of the church. I also love the flowers at Calvary and get to help sometimes as the spouse of the head of the Flower Guild, Eric Milner.” Shannon has served on the national board of Recovery Ministries of the Episcopal Church for six years, the last year as the board president. He also is the co-chair of the West Tennessee Diocesan Recovery Commission. When asked why he wants to serve on the vestry, he says, “I have watched Calvary expand and contract and expand again over the years and feel so connected to its success. I have prayed about it and hope that I can contribute in some way to helping her grow into wherever the Holy Spirit is leading next.” As a vestry member, Shannon would focus on connections, saying, “I want to work to make sure that we are not leaving people behind as we navigate living into what church looks like as the pandemic continues to change the way we live and grow. Part of that for me is also understanding both short- and long-term planning, logistics, and both internal and external communication at Calvary.”


Brie Wallace (38) grew up attending the Episcopal Church of the Good Samaritan in Knoxville every Sunday. As such, she says she “learned the importance of service from the parable of the Good Samaritan. Serving others is not about me – it was for them – my friends, my family, my community, my neighbors, my church, my people. If asked to serve, my answer is always yes.” Brie was introduced to Calvary by previous youth ministers Ellen Coleman and Heather Anderson when they needed someone to volunteer with the high school EYC group and lead worship. Brie says, “I would take my guitar about anywhere to help lead worship. This led to playing guitar and volunteering every Sunday morning during Children’s Chapel. What can I say – I’m a big kid? I loved it here and I never left.” In addition to youth ministry, Brie serves as a lector, Eucharistic Minister, and volunteer teacher for confirmation classes. She has participated in a Honduras mission trip at the Lamb Institute, is active in Calvary’s young adult group, and considers herself an “avid trunk or treat decorator extraordinaire.” Brie is passionate about the Dubose Conference Center, having served on their board of directors, led Winterfest (high school winter retreats), and led music at Camp Gailor-Maxon mini-camps there. An avid participant in numerous adult indoor soccer leagues in the Memphis area, Brie is also a St. Jude Hero Fundraiser, having participated in the Memphis St. Jude Marathon weekend every year since 2014. She mentions that “every 60 days you can see me at St. Jude donating blood or platelets.” Brie has a BA in Political Science from the University of South Carolina (2005), and a JD from the University of Memphis (2009). She presently works at Eskins, King, & Marney, PC as the senior associate attorney, with her practice focusing on personal injury, family law, insurance defense, business transactions, and contract law. As a vestry member, Brie looks forward to focusing on “formation and education classes, children’s and family ministry, master planning in facility management; and evangelism to the downtown community.” Brie and her wife Barbara are the parents of 18-month old son Beckett who was baptized at Calvary last year and attends Calvary Place.

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COVID-19 and Calvary TodayLearn More