President of the Board of Directors
Having attended Unity since 2007, Mary has a passion for this church and for being of service. She regularly platforms, ushers, decorates, sets up and cleans up for events, and has been involved with the Youth of Unity (YOU) group. Mary has two children, Emily and Duncan, who grew up in Unity and graduated from the YOU program. Mary models for them the importance of volunteering and serving this community.
Mary retired the end of January, 2015, from the Federal Medical Center, where she had been employed for the past 25 years. Mary and her spouse, Sue Hilsabeck-Huber, are members of PFLAG (Parents & Friends of Lesbians and Gays), andshe was chairperson for the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender) Affirmative Employment Program at the Medical Center. It is Mary's joy to serve Uinty of Springfield as a Board Member.
Vice-President and Liaison for Fundraising ("Fun-Raising")
- Owned 2 successful businesses.
- One of the top Aflac reps for 11 years.
- Very involved in community charities, business and church activities.
- Former Board President until 2013.
Treasurer and Liaison for Adult Education and Long & Short-Range Planning
James Kaatz, MPA, PhD, is an associate professor of Political Science and Public Administration at Missouri State University. Jim also works as a consultant to cities, counties, and on-pprofits in the areas of strategic planning and human resource management. Jim currently chairs the Springfield Public Building Corporation for the City of Springfield.
Liaison for Volunteer Service
Tom has served on the Board of Directors since 2011, and he’s one of the most recognizable faces around church. Tom provides weekly rides to congregants, and acts as Receptionist at least once a week. If something needs done, more often than not Tom helps out. Tom retired after 41 years in business management, technical sales, and customer service, and is a regular platelet donor with the American Red Cross.
Dr. Paula Armknecht
Liaison for Marketing & Publicity
Paula has been a student of Unity Principles for 33 years, joining Unity of Springfield in 1981. Paula is a native of Springfield and has lived in Nixa since 1999, where she is a 4th grade teacher at John Thomas School of Discovery (JTSD). Paula holds an Ed.D. in Instructional Leadership from Lindenwood University, and a B.S.ED and M.S.ED from MSU in Elementary Education & Educational Administration. She is mother of five grown children, and grandmother of four. Paula’s motto: “It may scare me, but it’s not going to stop me!”
Liaison for Music Department
Jon is Co-Founder of The MBS Life Center and Eagles Coaching. His business background includes over 31 years in management & training. Jon’s focus is to look at how we can grow like a business grows. With his background in business planning and leadership, he is confident he can analyze the information and create a dialogue that will help create positive solutions. Jon’s philosophy is that, “If we can get them in the door, we will get them to come back.”
Liaison for Teen Activities
- Married to Mitch (bass player extraordinaire) for 18 years
- 2 kids (Bella age 9, Beck age 7)
- BS in General Business from Missouri State University
- Currently pursuing MBA from Webster University
- Current job: Manager of Regulatory Compliance at American National (worked at American National 1998-2003, 2005-present)
- Professional designations include AIS, API, AINS, CPCU, ACP, CCP, ARC
- Served in the United States Peace Corps with husband, Mitch, from 2003 – 2005 in Mauritania (West Africa)
- Volunteer for power point 2nd and 4th Sundays. Volunteer for children’s Sunday school 3rd Sundays.
- Enjoys music, cooking, exercising, and spending time with family and friends.
Liaison for Outreach
The newest member to join the Board of Directors of Unity of Springfield, Amy will be providing her personal information shortly.
Honorary LIfetime Board Member and
Liaison for Building & Grounds
Norma Vinson has served on the Board of Directors at Unity for over 9 years, which includes 2 wonderfully difficult years as President. Honored now as Emeritus Board member, she has a voice but no vote on decisions and attends most Board functions. She has been a member of Unity since 1977 and still studying this way of life.
Serving as building and grounds liaison, she qualifies from years of real estate involvement and managing her numerous rental properties. Although she has been around for over 80 years, she still enjoys working as a commercial appraiser, doing eminent domain valuations for public improvements.
The center of Norma’s life is her four kids, their kids and their kid’s kids. Hobbies are ballroom dancing, judging dog shows, landscaping and playing occasional piano. Yoga and exercise and a good chiropractor are expected to help her keep up the pace.