Our Staff

OUUF Board of Trustees 2020-2021

President: Stephanie Gibson
Vice President: Jeff Witmer
Secretary: Sarah King
Treasurer: Cindy Frantz
Member-at-Large: Elizabeth Aldrich

Minister: Mary Grigolia

Mary Grigolia

Taken by Eleanor Helper in the OUUF garden.

Welcome to the Oberlin UU Fellowship, where I serve as minister half-time.

I’m drawn to OUUF because of its commitment to living our UU values – respect, acceptance, compassion, equity, inclusion and democracy – in the world, in the Fellowship, in our own lives. Working for justice is the outer half of our shared spiritual practice. The other half is inner work: Showing up accountably in conversations, programs, relationships and committees with kindness and self-awareness.

Before returning to Oberlin (in 2011), I served a large congregation in Durham, NC (2001-2008), a start-up urban ministry in Cleveland (1995-2001), a new congregation in Strongsville (now in North Royalton) (1992-1995). I was Oberlin’s first minister (1994-2001). I started at 1/10th time and graduated to 1/4 time!

I also minister with the North Olmsted UU Congregation (1/3 time). If you sign on to the Fellowship’s email list, you’ll see programs for both congregations (also open to the community). I serve as a spiritual director privately.

We all come to UU’ism with different stories. Some grew up without religion. Some were raised UU. Some come from interfaith families. Many of us came from other faith traditions.

I grew up American Baptist in Philadelphia and left the church at 13. A folk singer since college, I threw myself into anti-war work as spiritual practice. I taught yoga and meditation since 1980. I’m a mystic, singer-songwriter, alto, the mother of two loving and creative men, the grandmother of 3 amazing boys. My partner and I live in Lakewood.

I love serving OUUF as a catalyst for inner growth and living with authenticity. I would love to hear your story, needs, questions, yearnings and inspirations.

To start or deepen our connection, send me a message.

Music Director

Katie Cross, music director, holds degrees in piano performance from both Oberlin Conservatory and Ithaca College and devotes time to singing in professional choirs as well as a playing in a recorder ensemble and as one half of a professional trumpet/piano duo.  In addition, she holds certificates in various early childhood music methods and in eurhythmics.

Our musical offerings draw from many traditions such as classical western music, folk music from various world cultures, jazz and rock and pop icons, African American spirituals, and contemporary sources familiar to our younger congregants through recordings.  We have a small and dedicated choir that supports congregational singing, frequently offers a featured “choir only” contribution and occasionally combines forces with extra singers to present a full choir sound with 4 parts to complement a special service.  Children are offered informal music making opportunities right after their Sunday morning religious education class each week, based on Gordon’s music learning theory. Intergenerational services offer an opportunity for all congregants to join in percussive music making or chanting in addition to traditional hymn singing.

Director of Religious Exploration

Lara Lillibridge (she/zher), Director of Religious Exploration, grew up in the First Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Rochester, NY. Lara holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from West Virginia Wesleyan College, and is the author of 2 memoirs, 2 books for children, and is the co-editor of an anthology of women’s writing. Zhe is the Interviews Editor for Hippocampus Magazine and teaches creative writing online to children and adults. Lara is the mother of two delightful children and caretaker of two mostly-delightful cats.

Office Manager

Our Office Manager, Eva Wynn, schedules events in our building, sends our weekly emails, stocks our supplies, answers the phone, and does a few other things. Contact Eva by sending her a message through our form.