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
Formerly a Board President in 2013, Simone Hite was re-elected after being off the Board for the requisite amount of time. Among her credits, Simone has:
- Owned two successful businesses
- One of the top Aflac reps for 11 years
- Been very involved in community charities, business and church activities
Treasurer and Liaison for Adult Education and Employment
Short & Long-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 non-profits in the areas of strategic planning and human resource management. Jim currently chairs the Springfield Public Building Corporation for the City of Springfield.
DR. PAULA ARMKNECHT
Secretary and Liaison for Marketing & Publicity
Paula has been a student of Unity principles for 33+ years, joining Unity of Springfield in 1981. Pa
ula is a native of Springfield, and since 1999, has lived in Nixa. Paula is enjoying a new chapter of her life, having retired in 2017 after teaching 4th graders at John Thomas School of Discovery (JTSD) for many years.
Paula recently earned her doctorate in Instructional Leadership from Lindenwood University, and she also holds a BSEd and MSEd in Elementary Education and 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!"
(aka Mitch's wife, aka Beck & Bella's mom)
Liaison for Music / Youth Education
- BS in General Business from Missouri State University
- MBA from Webster University
- Current job: Director of Regulatory Compliance at American National
- 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 PowerPoint 2nd and 4th Sundays
- Enjoys music, cooking, exercising, and spending time with family and friends.
Liaison for Outreach
Amy Burnett has attended Unity of Springfield since 2014. She enjoys attending services, special events, classes and volunteering as often as she can. She felt called to a higher level of service to the church and is excited to add her energy to the Board's efforts to make Unity of Springfield more visible in our community.
Amy holds a BS in psychology and a M.Ed in Special Education Learning and Instruction. She currently works for Missouri Children's Division giving her an understanding of the needs of families in the area. Prior to her work with Children's Division she dedicated 14 years to providing services to individuals diagnosed with developmental disabilities. She was a member of Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity during her time at SMSU. Amy has been a board member for the SW MO Autism Walk for 4 years, and volunteers in her community.
Amy is married to her wonderful wife, Lisa Landrigan, who also attends Unity. They have four adult children and one beautiful granddaughter.
Liaison for Building & Grounds
After retiring from the fourth time in 2010, Terry moved to Missouri to be near his six grandchildren in Rogersville.
Past successful businesses owned:
- Mortgage Broker and Mortgage Banker, Stock Broker, Day Trader and Insurance Sales
- Corporate Pilot, Charter Pilot, Flight and Ground Instructor. Aerobatic Instructor.
- Contractor who designed, sold, built and serviced over 400 gunite swimming pools in Northern California. Factory Warranty station for pumps, filters, heaters, cleaners, and other pool equipment manufacturers.
- A wholesale perfume distributing company with contracts with 100 retail stores.
- Snow removal business.
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.