• General News

Announcing Candidates for the Board of Trustees & Nominating Committee

April 26, 2019

Here are the current candidates up for nomination at this year’s Annual Congregational Meeting to be held on Sunday, June 2, after the 10 am worship service.  Thank you to our Nominating Committee for putting together this slate of candidates!

Photo (L - R): first row - Tod Chernikoff, Nate Hultman, Becky Lupes // second row - Rich Madaleno, Judy Rodgers, Jack Welch // third row - Susan Easterly, Linda Gianessi, Mark Zito

Candidates for the Board:


Tod Chernikoff

Tod Chernikoff and his wife Lisa joined Cedar Lane in 2000. He has previously served multiple terms on the Nominating Committee and on the Personnel Committee, as well as being an RE teacher for almost a decade. He is also a member of the AV Ministry Team. Tod has been involved in the field of records and information management and information governance for over 20 years. He has served as a municipal records administrator and archivist, and a corporate records manager but mostly as a consultant to government agencies and private sector business. He is currently a Managing Consultant for IBM Services, working with US Government clients. Tod, who was raised in the Jewish tradition and first came to Cedar Lane with Lisa while they were dating. Their child, Anne, also a member of Cedar Lane, was raised in the church and has been active here for many years.

Nate Hultman

Nate Hultman and his wife (Ellen Berg) and kids (Linnea Hultman, 15, and Silas Hultman, 13) started attending Cedar Lane regularly in 2008 and joined as members in 2017. The family has enjoyed being part of the CLUUC community, with the kids growing up with the RE program and children’s/youth choir. Nate taught for one year in the RE Growing Up Year class. He values Cedar Lane’s embrace of open inquiry, mindfulness, and action; our creative and committed ministry team and other church leaders; our growing and supportive community; and our music program. Nate works professionally on climate change policy. He served in the Obama White House, including working on the Paris climate agreement, and is currently a professor and director of the Center for Global Sustainability at the University of Maryland School of Public Policy. A current project focuses on the work that states, cities, businesses, universities, communities of faith, and others can do to contribute to climate solutions. He has a Ph.D. & M.S. from the University of California at Berkeley and a B.A. from Carleton College. Nate grew up in Chicago, and has lived in Minnesota, California, Sweden, and England. He enjoys cooking and gardening, travel, art, and music.

Becky Lupes

Becky and her family came to Cedar Lane in 2012 for the RE program and for a community to nurture their souls and stretch their minds. They have been actively engaged in this wonderful congregation since. After a stint as an usher, Becky moved downstairs and is currently in her 4th year of teaching the 5th Grade Bibleodeon class. She’s active with the Holiday Craft Fair, in recent years leading the colorful explosion of the gingerbread house room. She’s also part of the recently-formed Children’s Companion Crew, assisting with Cedar Lane guest Rosa’s children when they are in residence. A life-long UU, she was raised as part of the Follen Community Church in Lexington, Mass. She and her husband Matt have two boys, Griffin, 12, and Henry, 9. Professionally, she works on climate change resilience at the Federal Highway Administration. She would be honored to serve on the Board of Trustees.

Rich Madaleno

Rich Madaleno joined Cedar Lane in 1996. He and his husband, Mark Hodge, were married at the church in 2001. They have two children, Katie and Jackson, who have participated in our religious education program. Rich served on the Social Justice Council for six years including three as chair, taught 7th grade RE for three years, and served on the Adult Programs Committee for two years. Mark taught OWL for eight years.

Rich was appointed Director of the Office of Management and Budget for Montgomery County in December. Prior to his appointment, he served sixteen years as an openly Unitarian Universalist member of the Maryland General Assembly.

Candidate for Assistant Secretary

Judy Rodgers

Judy Rodgers and her husband Jack have been members of Cedar Lane for over 30 years. They have two children, Elizabeth and Paul, who are graduates of Cedar Lane's Religious Education (RE) program. Judy retired in 2017, after working nearly 40 years as a health policy administrator within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. In retirement, she and Jack are enjoying more travel, more time with friends and family, and in particular, more fun with their beloved little 4-year old grandson. Judy's activities at Cedar Lane have included serving on the RE Council, the Adult Programs Committee, the Personnel Committee, and the Search Committee for Tim Atkins (Cedar Lane’s RE Director). Additionally, Judy has been an usher at Cedar Lane for the many years, has managed the Cedar Lane Auction check-in process for several years, and routinely comes to Church on Wednesday mornings to cut vegetables for Shepherd's Table. She is delighted by the opportunity to give back to Cedar Lane through service on the Board of Trustees.

Candidate for Assistant Treasurer

John (Jack) Welch

has been a Cedar Lane member with his wife Shirley for about 30 years. He has been a religious education teacher for more than 20 years, mostly teaching the 2nd session 6th grade Growing Up Year Class and most recently the 7th grade Social Justice Class. currently serves on the Financial, Endowment, Governance, and Human Resources Committees and the Safety and Security Taskforce; facilitates Soul Matters and Beloved Conversation groups; and takes turns as a companion to our sanctuary guest. Previously he has served on the Board as Treasurer, on the Search Committees for RE Directors and Ministers, and as a member of other teams. He enjoys participating in a number of adult programs and activities, including the Science and Religion Class, and a continuing connection circle. retired from for the Voice of America after more than 30 years, where he served as Director of Human Resources and Senior Advisor to the Director and is currently enjoying pottery and photography and a wide range of classes and lectures. He is blessed to be married to Shirley Welch with whom he has a daughter, Jennifer.

Candidate for Nominating Committee

Susan Easterly

Susan Easterly is an independent accompanist with a professional background as an accompanist/pianist, and a humanities, music theory, and piano instructor of children and adults. In 2004, Susan and her spouse, Sylvia Fisher, signed Cedar Lane's membership book and their daughter began attending the CLUUC RE program. Appreciating the breadth and depth of opportunities available at Cedar Lane, Susan has been active in the music program for over 13 years. She has served as a pianist for the Children's Choir, the Youth Choir, and Chapel, has participated as a member of Bell Canto and Ring Out Bells, and was a member of the Music Ministry Team, serving a year as chair. Pursuing other interests, Susan was a member of the LGBT Task Force (2005-10) and was active in the RE program as a member of the RE Council (a Spring B coordinator for 3 years), a RE teacher, and a member of a Lifespan Religious Educator Search Committee. Susan is excited by the prospect of serving in a new capacity as a member of the Nominating Committee.

Linda Gianessi

Linda has been a member of Cedar Lane for over 30 years and was married to Leonard in the Chapel in 1985. Their two children, Bob and Carol, are graduates of the RE Program. She worked in finance and administration at Resources for the Future and Brookings, retiring in 2014. She served as the Temporary Religious Education Coordinator for 6 months when Susan Archer retired. Among her various Cedar Lane activities, she has served on the Board twice, Human Relations Committee, Finance Committee, Nominating Committee, Grounds Team, RE Ministry Team, and taught RE classes for 25 years.

Mark Zito

Mark and his wife, Julia Gorey, began attending Cedar Lane in 1998 and joined in January 2000. Both of their daughters participated in RE and so thoroughly enjoyed the experience that they became classroom aides upon reaching high school. Jacqueline is now attending college, while Jessica, a high school sophomore, assists in the Growing Up Year 6th grade class. Both are talented musicians and have played during many of the services. Mark taught the 7th grade Junior Seminar class from 2012-18 and refashioned the curriculum to focus on UU identity and social justice, allowing him to further indulge these interests. It was a busy but rewarding experience. Outside of Cedar Lane, he has volunteered at Ford’s Theater National Historic site as a docent and worked as a food safety analyst at USDA. He looks forward joining the Nominating Committee and using the opportunity to get to know more of his fellow Cedar Lane congregants.