First UU Columbus

A Welcoming Congregation

Ministers and Staff PDF Print E-mail
Rev. Marian Stewart, Senior Minister  

revmarianRev. Marian accepted the call to be First UU’s settled Senior Minister in 2017. She is the fifth Senior Minister, and the first woman, to serve the congregation in that role in the last 60 years. Rev. Marian preaches from the head and the heart, and leads through listening and collaboration. She believes a strong church is one that works together. A favorite motto is “we, not me”. Rev. Marian sees many opportunities to build on what the congregation does well and expand First UU’s leadership presence in the larger community.

Rev. Marian actively engages in justice, interfaith, and congregational ministry, believing that building a better world begins with spiritual grounding that matches the soul with our words and action. Recognizing that there are many paths that we walk in life and no two are alike, she respects the inherent worth and dignity of the individual in balance with the interconnectedness of all beings and the world in which we live. Rev. Marian believes in living from the inside out. Going deep, discovering what matters, and acting out in a spirit of love, justice, and compassion.

Rev. Marian served the Northlake Unitarian Universalist congregation in Kirkland, WA for nine years. Before Northlake, she served congregations on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Originally from North Carolina, Rev. Marian earned her Masters of Divinity from Meadville-Lombard Theological School in Chicago and her Doctorate of Ministry at Seattle University. She has been a leader and member of many groups, including civic, educational, and interfaith. Rev. Marian was the founder and co-coinvener of F.I.R.E. (Fostering Interfaith Relationships on the Eastside).  She also served for six years on the Denominational Staff Team for UU students at Seattle University and currently teaches part-time in the School of Theology and Ministry.

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Rev. Eric Meter, Associate Minister


Eric Meter has been with First UU since May 2008. Born and raised Unitarian Universalist, Eric comes to our congregation after ten years of ministry in northern California and an interim ministry year in upstate New York.

After completing his Masters of Divinity at Starr King School for the Ministry in Berkeley, and then a ministerial internship under the late Rev. Dan O’Neal at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Santa Rosa, Eric served the Unitarian Universalist Church in Livermore, California until 2007. During his tenure there he was president of the local Interfaith Council, and co-chaired a marketing campaign of 17 UU congregations the San Francisco Bay area. Other highlights of his ministry there included travelling twice to visit his congregation’s partner church in Transylvania, leading a youth service trip to New Orleans to help in the post-Katrina rebuilding efforts and preaching in Soweto during a sabbatical month in South Africa. In 2007 Eric received the Distinguished Service Award from the Pacific Central District of the UUA.

Prior to answering the call to ministry, Eric was a VISTA volunteer with the Minnesota Literacy Council in St. Paul, MN and also worked with the Twin Cities’ Southeast Asian refugee and immigrant communities. During that time, Eric was also active in both local and district UU young adult programming.

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Elizabeth Mount, Director of Religious Exploration

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Our new DRE (August 2018) Elizabeth Mount is a Candidate for UU Ministry joining us after completion of a Master of Divinity degree at Meadville Lombard Theological School. They just finished a two-year internship at the First Universalist Church of Denver, a multi-minister congregation of a similar size to First UU Columbus.

As a lifelong UU, Elizabeth has seen the transformative possibility of religious exploration programming. They want to continue fostering such a nurturing environment, utilizing skills from years of experience in education, activism, conference planning, and UU church work. In collaboration with this congregation, Elizabeth is excited to create community, work for justice, and engage diversity.

Prior to entering seminary, Elizabeth was an organizer with environmental and Latinx community projects in Western North Carolina and Guatemala. They bring strengths in organizational work, volunteer management, and multigenerational community building.  They participate in ongoing work on climate change, anti-racism, and disaster relief within and beyond Unitarian Universalism. Additional interests include rereading all of Octavia Butler’s novels, weaving, playing Ingress, and climbing rocks, trees… and the occasional bridge.

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Amanda Hays, Ministerial Intern

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Amanda Hays has been at First UU since September 2017, and her internship will end in June 2019. Amanda has an M.A. in Pastoral Care and is currently working toward her Masters of Divinity at Meadville Lombard Theological School. She also has a background in the sciences through her B.S. in Engineering (Civil/Environmental Concentration).

Amanda loves creating meaningful services, provoking thoughtful conversations, providing pastoral care, and promoting community. After her internship, Amanda plans to pursue chaplaincy, and is particularly interested university outreach.

Amanda lives in the Near East Side of Columbus with her husband and three housemates.

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Religious Exploration Assistant

[coming soon]

Marian Garcia, Office Administrator
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Brian Hagemann, Church Administrator

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Tony McDonald, Music Director


Tony has had a career in music performance and administration. He received his Masters and D.M.A. degrees in orchestral conducting from Stanford University and has directed orchestras, bands and choirs and taught music at Hillsdale, Centre and Antioch Colleges. In addition, he has taught music to children of all ages at the Davis Center for the Performing Arts. In 1995 he received a Minority Arts Administration Fellowship and, consequently, has worked as an arts administrator with the St. Louis Symphony, The MacPhail Center for the Arts, Opera/Columbus and the King Arts Complex. Tony has also directed musical theatre for over 35 years and currently writes for and directs his own group, Dr. Tony’s Original Ragtime Band

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Brandon Moss, Chalice Choir Director

Brandon_MossBrandon L. Moss serves as Director of the Chalice Choir.  A native of Parkersburg, West Virginia, Brandon holds a Bachelor of Music Education from Otterbein College and a Master of Science in Higher Education from Drexel University, and he is currently seeking a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from The Ohio State University.  Prior to returning to Columbus, Brandon taught choral, instrumental, and general music at the middle and high school levels in Dover City Schools and Three Rivers Local Schools, and he served as a Student Affairs administrator at Ohio Wesleyan University.  As a performer, Brandon has sung with the Columbus Symphony Chorus, the Choir of Christ Church Cathedral in Cincinnati, and various church choirs throughout the greater Columbus area.  When not conducting, singing, or in class, Brandon enjoys traveling, attending concerts, cooking, reading, and educating himself in popular culture.

Spirit of Life and Children's Choir Directors
 [coming soon]
Nathan Hamm, Church Pianist and Choir Accompanist
nhamm_optNathan Hamm has a B.M. in Piano Performance from The Ohio State University, is principal accompanist for the Columbus Gay Men’s Chorus and the Dublin Singers, and is part of “Music by reflection,” a piano/vocal duo that performs at local venues. Nathan previously held this same position at the North UU Church in Lewis Center, for almost 20 years.