Convention 2023: Nominees for Election
September 18, 2023
The Nominations Committee is pleased to announce our slate of nominations for election at the 184th Annual Convention of The Episcopal Diocese of Missouri.
We will be electing members to Cathedral Chapter, Diocesan Council, Disciplinary Board, and Standing Committee.
Please continue to scroll on this page to see the entire list.
- Electing 1 lay member (from inside St. Louis City/County) and 1 clergy member (from outside St. Louis City/County) for 3-year terms
Cathedral Chapter is similar to the Vestry of a parish, but because the Cathedral is the Bishop’s seat and the “mother church” for the Diocese, its leadership is made up of clergy and lay members from throughout the Diocese as well as its own congregation. Chapter meets monthly on Zoom.
NO NOMINEES for election to Cathedral Chapter (as of the Sept. 14 deadline)
* Nominations can still be made from the floor of Convention. If you would like to submit your name, please contact the Rev. Tamsen Whistler, chair of the Nominations Committee.
- Electing 2 lay members for 3-year terms
The Diocesan Council does the work of the Diocesan Convention when Convention is not in session, including development of the program budget; oversight of the programs and offices funded by the budget; and oversight and interpretation of diocesan policies. Members of this committee also serve as members of COEDMO, the Corporation of the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri (meets approximately every other month).
Please click on the individuals' names to see their photo and a short biography.
Joyce LaFontain - Trinity Episcopal Church, St. Louis
I am a proud member of Trinity Episcopal and the parish’s current senior warden. I am an attorney at Ameren by day and a bookworm/art appreciator/hapless gardener by the rest of the time. My tenure as vestry-person and then senior warden at Trinity has been marked by some particularly instructive challenges, including both the pause and the careful reentry necessitated by the Covid pandemic, the resignation of our current rector, and the kick-off of our discernment process for the next rector. Each of these events required a balancing of policy with the spiritual and emotional needs of my parish family, and improved my understanding of how the church’s stewards can pitch in to turn impossible-seeming tasks into joyful, shared service. I am specifically proud to have contributed to both a significant increase in our parish’s under-40 population and to the successful shepherding of our community through an eight month period without either a rector or interim rector.
Like many other young folks that I come across in the Episcopal Church, I am a transplant from another denomination. While my previous church offered a strong sense of community, it also adhered to antiquated attitudes of patriarchy and homophobia that were difficult to reconcile with the gospel message. I am so grateful to have found a spiritual home that does not complicate Jesus’s plain message of divine, unconditional love with those arbitrary, wholly-human hang-ups. I would be honored to lend my time and energy to the Diocese’s effort to communicate that same message of abundant love as a member of Diocesan Council.
Joan Kerry Quinlisk - The Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration, Lake St. Louis
I have lived most of my life in the Diocese of Missouri. I grew up at Emmanuel, and have also been a member of St. Timothy’s. I am currently a member of Church of the Transfiguration, in Lake St. Louis. I have served on the vestry, been in the choir, served on a number of ministries at Transfiguration, and am currently a delegate to the diocesan convention.
I have served on the Diocesan Council for the past three years, and I have found it very interesting. I have learned a lot about how things work at the diocesan level. I am currently on the Vital Communities Working Group, and the New Ventures in Community Ministry Grant selection committee.
I feel I have experience and knowledge that I can use serving on council for another three years. I would be honored to continue to serve in this capacity.
Ezra Smith - The Episcopal Church of St. Michael & St. George, Clayton
My name is Ezra Smith, I am a current senior at Kirkwood High School. I was baptized on Pentecost 2006 at the Episcopal Church of Saint Michael and All Angels in South Bend, Indiana. In 2012 I moved to Saint Louis, and for the last eleven years I have been a member of the Church of Saint Michael and Saint George in Clayton, Missouri. I have served as an acolyte, thurifer, lay reader, and chalice bearer during services, and have experienced children’s chapel, youth group, guys’ small group, hunger ministry, youth retreats, mission trips, and the 2023 Episcopal Youth Event.
Through prayer and from those around me, I have heard the Lord calling me to leadership this summer. I love to serve others this way, and my strengths of responsibility, empathy, humility, and teamwork help me. I would love to be elected to a position on the Diocesan Council because I am passionate about serving others, as well as growing and learning more about the Episcopal Church that is my home.
- Electing 1 clergy member and 2 lay member for 3-year terms
The Disciplinary Board exists to help in cases where clergy have been presented with charges under the Ecclesiastical Disciplinary Canons (Title IV) of the Canons of The Episcopal Church (meets once a year and as needed).
NOMINEES for election to the Disciplinary Board:
Please click on the individuals' names to see their photo and a short biography.
The Rev. Garron Daniels - St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, Creve Coeur
The Rev. Garron C. Daniels, SCP, serves as Curate at St Timothy's Episcopal Church in Creve Coeur and as a Hospice Chaplain. He attended Truman State University where he received a BS in Justice Systems, Magna Cum Laude. He went on to study for his MDiv at the University of the South: School of Theology. In 2022 he was a recipient of the Griffin Fellowship and partook in ministry formation in the Holy Land at St George's College. Fr. Garron is also a member of the Guild of All Souls and the Society of Catholic Priests. He is also an appointed member to the Constitution and Canons Committee of the Diocese.
Fr Garron is interested in the Disciplinary Board as he feels that he can use his education, experience, and skills with his BS in Justice Systems and his passion for restorative justice in order to help handle the cases the Disciplinary Board is given. Not only that but Fr. Garron devotes his time in trying to understand our Canons and Constitution, how it applies to share life as a Church and what is expected of our leaders. Fr. Garron believes that restoration and reconciliation are vital positions for Christians to have and sees these positions and theology around them as essential for the work of the Board.
The Rev. Shug Goodlow - Christ Episcopal Church, Rolla
The Rev. Shug Goodlow currently serves as Interim Priest-in-Charge at Christ Church Rolla in Rolla, Missouri, having previously served at St. Martin’s in Ellisville and St. Peter’s in Ladue. The following statement is offered for your consideration:
Anyone pursuing ordination to Holy Orders is required to go through Title IV training. Frankly, the more I learned about Title IV, the more it terrified me so I decided to become more familiar with the rationale and intent behind it (and Title III). Once I got past the procedural imperatives I began to discern that the spiritual imperatives were so much more important to the proceedings. I came to understand that we are each and every one of us called to holiness of life and accountability to one another at the time of our baptism. Yes, we are called to support one another, but we are also called to seek ways to resolve conflicts when they arise. Our communal life in Christ offers us many ways to do this through processes that seek to resolve conflicts by promoting “healing, repentance, forgiveness, restitution, justice, amendment of life and reconciliation among all involved or affected.”
By offering myself as a nominee for the Disciplinary Board I am willing to accept the responsibilities and accountabilities associated with the position and always work to ensure that the process holds above all else, its spiritual and theological foundation.
Lisa Gould - Christ Church Cathedral, St. Louis
My name is Lisa Gould. I have worked for SEIU for the past 20 years in many different roles. I started as a temp looking for my next career. I was looking for a change after 10+ years in retail management. Temping gave me an opportunity to find my niche. Starting out as the receptionist while pursing another degree from Saint Louis University, I quickly moved from that position to being a liaison for Kerry/Edwards campaign for SEIU in Missouri. It was a wonderful opportunity. After the election, I was asked to stay on as a union representative and 4 years later I again was asked to be the liaison for SEIU with OBAMA. In 2008, I trusteed a union and merger 2 unions together moving to my current position as the Administrative Manager for SEIU Local 2000 Health & Welfare & Pension Trust Fund. A role I have been in since 2012. SEIU Local 2000 is the third-party administrator providing health insurance benefits to union members. Coming to SEIU as a temp was one of the best decisions.
When I am not working, I try to take part in giving back to my community. I have sat on the United Way board for 10+ years and am currently on the executive board. I chair the Health Service committee, Safety Net Subcommittee, and Regional Investment committee. I am a commissioner for the city of Saint Louis with CREA (Civil Rights Enforcement Agency). And for Christ Church Cathedral; I sit on the security and property committees.
I love books, movies of all genres, music, traveling and fashion. Love being mother to a grown son Justin.
Duncan McArthur - Trinity Episcopal Church, St. Louis
I was born in San Diego, CA and lived there until going off to college at Brown University, in Providence, RI. Although both my parents had affiliations to the Baptist denomination before I was born, they were married at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, where I was subsequently baptized, confirmed, and indelibly marked by my experiences in that congregation. I sang in the choir and was steeped in the Jungian-influenced preaching of our rector John Sanford, and learned from community teachers like Robert A. Johnson.
I’m interested in many things. Most of my working life has been as a software developer. But, in addition to my bachelor’s degree in Human Biology from Brown, I also earned masters and doctoral degrees in clinical psychology from Georgia State University. My dissertation explored the development of narrative engagement in 2 to 3-year-old children.
At our 25th college reunion in 2005, I re-connected with my friend Lisa Carpenter. We had lived on the same freshman hall at Brown and had intermittently stayed in touch over the years. Lisa moved to St. Louis to attend Washington University School of Law, then worked as a career law-clerk in the Federal Judiciary. Lisa discovered Trinity Episcopal Church, joining its community in 1999. We were married at Trinity in 2006 and are actively engaged in the life of the community there.
I hope that my attention might never be needed for a matter before the disciplinary board. But if the need arises, I pledge to bring the sum of my experience and talents to work for a careful resolution. My training as a psychologist may be useful in this. Moreover, I’ve learned much from Lisa about how our society adjudicates controversies both inside and outside the courts. This too will inform my contributions to the disciplinary board.
Mari Moody - The Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration, Lake St. Louis
Born in Colorado, I grew up in Canada. I was raised in and married at St. John’s Anglican Church in Toronto, and then lived and traveled extensively in the U.S. as my husband served in the Air Force and with the airlines. After retirement, health brought us here to Missouri in 2017. At a time when I most needed to find my church family again, we found ourselves enthusiastically welcomed at Transfiguration Episcopal Church in Lake St. Louis. There, I have served two terms as a member of the Vestry and three fulfilling years as Senior Warden to The Rev Lu-Anne Conner.
DISCIPLINARY BOARD NOMINATION
Thank you for considering the nomination of me to serve on our Diocesan Disciplinary Board. Each time I am invited to consider a calling, it strikes me that at the very least it is presumptuous of me to do so. And yet, current times call for service, with a focus on accountability balanced with compassion.
I am not called by God to judge. I do not see that as the purpose of our Disciplinary Board. Any one of us might find ourselves struggling to accomplish our given mission; any one of us might find we have lost our way. I have a strong capacity to see the humanity of others, even when I personally might struggle with the desire to judge. Instead, I believe that God calls me to work with others in ways that compassionately supports, strengthens and guides them as they struggle to redirect their efforts. Please allow me the opportunity to serve.
Thank you for your consideration.
Electing 2 clergy member and 1 lay members for 4-year terms
The Standing Committee functions as the council of advice to the Bishop. It is a visioning group for the diocese; certifies candidates for ordination in the diocese; votes on consent to the election, ordination, and consecration of bishops churchwide; and may serve as the ecclesiastical authority for the diocese in the absence of a bishop (meets monthly).
NOMINEES for election to the Standing Committee:
Please click on the individuals' names to see their photo and a short biography.
The Rev. C. Earl Mahan - Hope Episcopal Church, Town & Country
Edward (Ted) McNamara - Trinity Episcopal Church, St. Louis
I am Ted McNamara and I believe my background, training, experience, and demonstrated abilities qualify me for election to the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri Standing Committee.
I have been a member of Trinity Episcopal Church in Saint Louis since 2015. I reside in Saint Louis city with Dennis, my husband of 25 years. I have traveled extensively throughout the world in my working and retired life and experienced first-hand the cultural values and social norms of a great many of the world’s peoples. This understanding, along with essential values of honesty, integrity, respect, and courage have guided my life over the years. My down time involves interests in family, cooking, gardening, photography, reading, good movies, classic cars, boating, and travel.
I was born in Boston, MA, grew up and attended private schooling in Rhode Island. I joined the U.S. Air Force following high school. After military service, I attended the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, graduating with a BBA degree in Human Resources Management. I was married following college and am blessed with two grown sons and a grandson.
For 25 years, I worked for the Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) as a Human Resource Manager. AAFES’s 70K associates serve the men and women of the U. S. Army and the U. S. Air Force and their families stationed around the world, with retail goods, food and related services. During my career, I received numerous assignments to progressively complex HR functions, including overseas assignments in Hawaii and Germany. Before early retirement, I was the Chief, HR Policy, at AAFES Headquarters in Dallas, TX.
I later retired after 17 years’ service as Chief Learning Officer (CLO) with the Department of Veterans Affairs Canteen Service (VCS), headquartered in Saint Louis. VCS’s 5K associates serve Americas’ Veterans with retail goods and services at all VA Medical Facilities in the U. S. and Puerto Rico. My CLO Responsibilities included development, analysis and enhancement of associate recruitment, development, and leadership programs.
At Trinity I serve as a liturgical reader and intercessor; Film and Fellowship group member; and served with the Trinity Food Ministry. We support a variety of church-sponsored social and liturgical activities and events. Before Trinity, I was: a lay member of Parish Councils, Eucharist Minister and liturgist at various times; chaired/participated in youth leadership programs; trained liturgists; chaired festival committees; and oversaw programs for lay converts to the Faith.
The Rev. Aaron Rogers - St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, Ferguson and Diocesan Ministry Developer for Young Adults
Aaron Rogers is the current clergy-in-charge at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in Ferguson and is the ministry developer for Young Adult Ministry in the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri. Aaron received his B.S. from Bradley University, his Master of Divinity degree from Eden Theological Seminary, a certificate in Youth and Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, a certificate in Nonprofit Management from the Institute of Ethical leadership at Rutgers University Business School, an Executive Certificate in Religious Fundraising from the Lake Institute, and a diploma in Anglican Studies from Virginia Theological Seminary.
Formerly, Aaron has served as the Associate Minister of Stewardship and Development at the historic Riverside Church in Harlem, NY and as the Associate to the Rector for Trinity Episcopal Church in the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis. Notably Aaron has been awarded a number of prestigious fellowships throughout his career and ministry which include being named a Public Policy fellow for Leadership Newark (2016), an Engle Preaching Fellow at Princeton Preaching Theological Seminary (2019), and most recently, a Trinity Wall Street Leadership Fellow (2023).
Aaron serves the community of the St. Louis Metropolitan area by serving as the board chair for East Side Aligned, a collective impact organization for children and youth in East Saint Louis and for Faith for Justice, a coalition of Christian activists in the St. Louis area. He has also been a member of the Community Governance Board for Forward Through Ferguson's Racial Healing and Justice Fund for the last three years.
Aaron serves the Diocese of Missouri as a member of the Emery Washington Convocation Leadership Council and as a member of the Dismantling Racism Leadership Team. He lives in Florissant, Missouri with his wife Trina' and their two daughters, Cameron and Olivia. Aaron enjoys reading, writing poetry, hikes, board games, and brunch.
Machelle West - The Episcopal Church of All Saints and Ascension, Northwoods
I have been selected as a candidate for the Standing Committee Nomination. It is an honor to have my name included with the list of candidates.
I have been active in the Episcopal Church since 1983. The congregation I attend is All Saints & Ascension Episcopal Church. Presently, I sing in the Choir and serve as a Worship Leader. Through the years, I have served in various church ministries. Some of the ministries include the Altar Guild, an Adult Acolyte, Bishop's Committee, Vestry, Vacation Bible School Coordinator, Children & Adult Sunday School Education, and an After School Snacks Coordinator.
I have also been an Alternate, a Delegate to the Diocesan Convention and an Episcopal City Mission Board Member. Recently, I served on the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri Visioning Committee.
Presently, I am on the Cathedral Chapter, the Gathering Space Task Force, the Gun Violence Prevention Committee, and Episcopal Recovery Ministry.
My theological education with the Episcopal School for Ministry and Eden Seminary have given me a greater understanding of God's work in the church and the wider community. I enjoy church worship and fellowship, but I believe that our Christian work extends beyond the doors and steps of our churches. It would be ideal if we could strive to help our churches and communities be more like heaven on earth.
The skills I have are collaboration, diplomacy, good listener, objectivity, and spiritually grounded.
I believe with my education, life experiences, and training, I can provide advice to the Bishop, the Council, follow the Canons of the Diocese and the wider Church.
We would like to thank the members of our Nominations Committee for their work in putting this slate of candidates together. Nominations from the floor of Convention can still be made, but those names will not appear in our produced convention materials. If you would like to nominate yourself for any of these positions, please contact the Rev. Tamsen Whistler.
Nominations Committee Members
- The Rev. Tamsen Whistler, Chair - Trinity Episcopal Church, St. Charles
- The Rev. Nancy Emmel Gunn - St. John's Episcopal Church, Tower Grove / St. Louis
- The Rev. Meg Goldstein - Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration, Lake St. Louis
- Lisann Backsmeyer - Trinity Episcopal Church, Hannibal
- Vicki Myers - Grace, Episcopal Church, Jefferson City
- Mike Fowlkes - Episcopal Church of the Holy Communion, University City