MidAmerica Board of Trustees

MidAmerica Region Board 2022-11-18

MidAmerica Region Board 2022-2023

Back row, L-R: McKenna Revel, Jim Moir, Hans Kelson, Autumn Mahoney
Middle: David Jackoway, Rev. David Pyle
Front: Rev. Sharon Dittmar, Dorit Bergen, Rae Jane Araujo, Patty Notch
Not pictured: Barb Gutsch (appointed March 2023)


Patty Notch, MidAmerica Region Board Member

Patty Notch, President

(2021-2025) Patty Notch is a member of First Unitarian Church in Des Moines, Iowa.

She currently serves as President of First Unitarian’s Board of Trustees. Prior to joining the board, Patty chaired the Ministerial Search Committee. Patty has served her church in many ways over the years – she has taught RE, volunteered with Family Promise, served on a variety of committees, and planned many social events.

Patty is a graduate of Drake University and Drake University Law School in Des Moines, Iowa. She has been a practicing attorney since 1992. Patty has six children, and married her wife Meg, in 2010. Together they have a total of nine children. Only the youngest, 12, is still at home. Patty has primarily practiced in the area of criminal and juvenile law, but has extensive experience in navigating the children’s mental health system in the state of Iowa, having served as a family peer support specialist for several years. In her spare time, Patty likes to read, travel, and look for treasures at thrift shops and consignment stores.

McKenna Revel, MidAmerica Region Board Member

McKenna Revel, Vice-President

(2021-2025) McKenna Revel joined the MidAmerica Board of Trustees in 2021. McKenna is from Eastern Kentucky, and is currently a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lexington. She is a Soul Matters facilitator there, and also participated in the Social Justice Book Club and the Cooking Club. Previously, she was a member of the lay-led Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Madison County, having become a UU at 19. There she served as both Secretary and interim President of the Board, as well as on the Covenant of Right Relations committee.

Professionally she is a criminal defense investigator, and holds a B.S in Social Justice Studies and an M.S in Justice, Policy, and Leadership. She also volunteers with the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning, and with the Church of the Larger Fellowship’s Worthy Now Prison Ministry program. She enjoys creative writing and her dog, and is thrilled to join the Board.

Rae Jane Araujo

Rae Jane Araujo, Treasurer

(2020-2024) Rae Jane Araujo is a member of Heritage Universalist Unitarian Church located in Cincinnati, Ohio. She has been a UU for 40 years. She is active in her church’s Social Justice Collaborative, is treasurer of the Unitarian Universalist Council of Greater Cincinnati (cluster), and is currently President of the Midwest Unitarian Universalist Conference. She is a past board member of UUJO (Ohio’s state- wide social justice network).

She has been active in her church, serving several times as Treasurer, and has been involved with the following: Co-Chair of the Universalist Convocation Planning Committee, Labyrinth Arts Festival Steering Committee, Finance Committee, Stewardship, Welcoming Congregation, and Ministerial Search Committees. She was Chair of the Building Committee when the church was built in 1985. She served on the board of the Heartland District (before the creation of the MidAmerican Region) and served as its Treasurer. She is also involved with a wide range of non-UU social justice movements including the Coalition for a Just Hamilton County.

Before retirement in October of 2018, Rae Jane was the Technical Sales Manager for Howden American Fan. She is married to her husband, Russ, and is the mother of two grown children (who are also UUs). Rae Jane loves spending time with her four granddaughters and one great-granddaughter.

Autumn Mahoney

Autumn Mahoney, Secretary

(2020-2023) Autumn Mahoney lives just outside Detroit, Michigan and has been a member of Community Unitarian Universalists in Brighton since 2012. There, she served on the CUUB Board of Trustees for six years, including time as board secretary. She has also been active on the Communications Team and currently serves as the congregation’s technology coordinator. She comes to Unitarian Universalism from a pagan perspective, and grounds her own spiritual practice in a deep connection with the natural world.

Autumn is a computer scientist with a bachelor’s degree from Michigan Technological University. Professionally, she serves as Chief Scientific Officer for a tech company in Ann Arbor. Outside of work, she can often be found inventing in her home lab or mentoring her daughters’ middle-school robotics team.

She is an active social justice activist, focusing most intently on the struggle for transgender rights and equality. Her lawsuit against Michigan’s secretary of state helped lead to increased access to accurate gender markers on drivers licenses, she has fought for increased access to trans-affirming healthcare, and she currently serves on the board of a non-profit that is committed to the empowerment of the trans community.

Autumn sees in Unitarian Universalism great potential for radical inclusion that can continue to deepen through our deliberate, collective work in identifying and pushing back against systems of privilege and division.

Dorit Bergen - MidAmerica Region Board member

Dorit Bergen, At-Large

(2019-2023) Dorit Bergen has been a Unitarian Universalist and a member of the First Unitarian Society of Madison (FUS) since 1976. She currently serves on the FUS Board of Trustees and as one of their lay ministers. Dorit helps coordinate the FUS team that volunteers mornings at one of the Madison area shelters, and is the First Unitarian Society liaison to the Dane Sanctuary Coalition.

Outside of FUS she is the current president of the council of a local peer to peer support group for seniors, and co-president of a chapter of a teacher charitable organization. Dorit is a retired middle school math teacher.

Jim Moir

Jim Moir, At-Large

(2020-2023) Jim Moir spent his childhood in the RE program at 1st UU Detroit. In the 50+ years since, he has been active in 7 UU congregations. He was the founding president for Spirit of Life UUs, an emerging congregation in Odessa, FL. Jim has visited at least 40 congregations to participate in programs or worship.

Work in congregations included many different experiences—worship, teaching, social justice, and growth. He served 20 years as a Youth Advisor, including two terms on the Florida Youth Council. He was the Growth Chair for Florida District in the early 2000’s.

In 2004 Jim and his wife Robin moved to Chicago so he could pursue UU ministry. Sadly, Robin contracted cancer. They moved back to Michigan to be near family and Robin succumbed in 2007. Jim completed coursework for a Master’s in Religion, but elected to “retire” from seeking ordination. Currently Jim has a ministry of sorts as Youth Librarian for the Dearborn Heights City Libraries.

Currently a member at Northwest UU in Southfield, Jim teaches Sunday school and is the liaison to the larger UU movement. He is a big picture person, excited about a chance to strengthen UU congregations and institutions.

Hans Kelson

Hans Kelson, At-Large

(2020-2024) Hans Kelson has been a Unitarian Universalist since he was five years old, when his family joined the UU Church of Bloomington, Indiana. He became a member in his own right in 2016 at the age of sixteen. Since then, Hans has served as youth liaison to the board, attended the Youth Midwest Leadership School in 2016, served as a delegate to General Assembly in 2019, and been involved in regional youth leadership activities. Currently, Hans serves on the MidAmerica Young Adult Steering Committee.

Homeschooled throughout his schooling years, Hans has been able to take advantage of many opportunities to forge his own path. In 2015, he helped found the Interfaith Community of Environmentalist Youth (ICEY) which organized local home weatherizing events, started the area’s first “solarize” campaign, and traveled to Washington, D.C., to participate in the Friends Committee on National Legislation’s annual Spring Lobby Weekend. He currently works for Monroe County Government as a computer technician, and is starting his own tech consulting company. In 2018, he was elected to the Benton Township Board, where he is working to raise awareness about local governance and shore up fire protection services for his rural community. Hans enjoys playing guitar, reading high fantasy, and participating in a local pool league.

David Jackoway

David Jackoway, At-Large

(2022-2024) David Jackoway has been a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Indianapolis for 19 years. Prior to that he was a member of the UU Church West in Milwaukee, Wisconsin for 7 years. From 2011-2013 he served as the Heartland District Trustee on the UUA Board of Trustees. During his term he helped draft revisions to the UUA bylaws to formally recognize regions, and specifically the newly created MidAmerica Region, as part of the UUA.

David has twice served as President of his congregation's Board of Trustees. He has served in several other capacities including Newsletter Editor, Adult Religious Education chair, Stewardship Campaign co-chair, Denominational Affairs chair, and on a Ministerial Search Committee. At the Milwaukee congregation David served as Vice President of the Board of Trustees, on the Religious Education Council and in other capacities.

David has spent his whole life in MidAmerica having lived in St. Louis for his first 35 years. He works as a computer programmer at a national insurance company. David is recently widowed and has a grown son who is about to complete his first year of grad school at Indiana University. He also has three cats.

Headshot of Barb Gutsch

Barbara Gutsch, At-Large

(2022-2025) Barb Gutsch is an 18-year member of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Salina, KS, where she serves a contracted ‘lay leader’ in the absence of a minister, leading services, workshops, religious education, managing the website, and officiating weddings and funerals.  She has been an active participant in the MidAmerica Region where she has served as a board member of the Midwest Unitarian Universalist Conference, the Prairie Star District Southern Cluster Leadership team, Midwest Leadership School Staff, and Prairie Star District Camp Star Trail Staff.

Barb is a retired Navy Lieutenant Commander and enjoys traveling with her wife of 30-years, especially to see their two young-adult children; one who sails tall ships in Washington state and the other who studies theater lighting design and jazz bass performance at Oberlin College and Conservatory in Ohio. She spends summers as a recreation director at Fair Hills Resort in Minnesota.