The Board of Trustees is elected by the congregation to direct, monitor, and inspire the Fellowship through the careful establishment of congregational goals (ends) and broad written policies reflecting the Board’s values and perspectives about both the ends to be achieved and means to be avoided.
The Board governs with an emphasis on:
1. Outward vision rather than internal preoccupation
2. Encouragement of diversity in viewpoints
3. Strategic leadership more than administrative detail
4. Clear distinction of Board (governance) and Minister/Staff (ministry/operations) roles
5. Collective rather than individual decisions
6. Future rather than past or present
7. Proactivity rather than reactivity
Through policy governance, the Board can focus on long-range vision, and the staff and members are empowered to do the great work of our congregation’s ministry.
Regular Board meetings are held monthly, at least ten times per year. For the information of the Fellowship members who may wish to attend, a notice of the time and place of each Board meeting appears in the News and Notes. All Board meetings are open to the Fellowship except during Executive Sessions, which are solely for discussion of confidential issues.
The Board of Trustees consists of seven members serving three-year terms elected by the Congregation. Terms are staggered, and no one may serve more than six consecutive years without a hiatus of at least one year. The board acts on behalf of the Congregation’s membership to promote the accomplishment of the Fellowship’s mission and prevent unacceptable activities and conditions with the Fellowship. HERE IS A BASIC BOARD MEMBER “JOB DESCRIPTION”.

The Board appoints a Treasurer to oversee the Financial workings of the Fellowship.

The Board members for 2018-2018 are …

  Alice McNeely – President

Alice moved to San Luis in 2010 with her husband, John Smigelski, after retiring from a position in higher education.  She has been a UU for more than 25 years and was an active member of the UU Congregation of Binghamton, NY before moving to SLO.

Alice is currently completing her first 3-year term on the Board of Trustees and has also served on our Ministerial Search Committee (co-chair) Nominating Committee, Aesthetics Teams (co-chair), Sabbatical Team (chair), Auction Team (co-chair), Pledge Campaign, as well as serving as a Worship Associate and UU B&B host.

Since moving to SLO, Alice continued her personal yoga practice and completed certification as a Svaroopa Yoga Teacher; now teaching a couple of classes each week. She enjoys hiking the many wonderful trails in San Luis Obispo County and capturing what she can with watercolor and silk painting. Alice frequently visits her children and grandchildren in Los Angeles and Portland and enjoys hosting family and friends in San Luis Obispo.


Kate Throop – Vice President

Kate Throop has been a Unitarian Universalist for 30 years and a member of this congregation for (almost) 10 years.    She has served as Religious Educator in Dallas (RE assistant), Orlando (DRE) and Sacramento (DRE), and was Interim DRE here at UUF the year before Janise Rennie was hired.   In addition to her RE experience, Kate was Board president in Sacramento for two years,  a Board member here in 2009-10,  and a member of the PCD Board of Trustees when she and Terry lived in Sacramento.  Kate has been active here in Worship Arts and many other activities.  She lives in Cayucos and is devoted to the Cayucos Library where she is currently president of the Friends of Cayucos Library.  She enjoys spending time with her 6 grandchildren, her spouse Terry and their dog Gus.  Kate was reared in a progressive protestant church in New England and appreciates knowing that Unitarian Universalism is rooted in that Christian tradition.


  Katy Ayer – Corporate Secretary

Katy Ayer has been attending Unitarian congregations (with interruptions) since she was a girl in Davis, CA in the 1970s, Katy has been a member of our fellowship since the year 2000; prior to that she was a member of the UU congregations in Whittier, CA and in Fullerton, CA.  Up until she was thirty, Katy was convinced that truth was only attainable through art, and this principle led her to obtain a Ph.D. in German literature. She subsequently changed her career path and is now a small-town CPA in Arroyo Grande.

Katy and her husband Steve Beadle have two sons in college.  Both boys have fond memories of Religious Education activities in this congregation.  Katy remains active in the RE program, and has served on the Endowment Committee, as well as assisting with capital campaign activities.


Barbara Curry


  Jeff Farber

Jeff Farber was born and raised in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He then moved to Iowa City where he was a music teacher for nearly two decades. After meeting his amazing wife, Charmaine Farber they moved to Ohio and then Connecticut. While in Connecticut Jeff went back to school and received a degree in Film, Video and Interactive Media.

Jeff and Charmaine have attended the following UU churches; Unitarian Universalist Society of Iowa City, Unitarian Universalist Church of Youngstown and Unitarian Society of New Haven. They are happy and proud to be members of Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of San Luis Obispo County.

Jeff is currently working at Cal Poly as a videographer for the College of Liberal Arts and a lab instructor for the Graphic Communications department. He is also working towards a master’s degree in Human Computer Interaction from Iowa State University. Jeff still loves playing music and is a member of the band; Joe Koenig and the Homewreckers.


Dawn Olsen

Dawn lived in NJ and PA growing up. She was raised Presbyterian but she and her husband, Eric attended Congregational churches in the Bay Area and Columbus, OH. They discovered the UU fellowship when they moved to San Luis Obispo in 2004.

Currently the Retail Director at Hearst Castle, Dawn has recently transitioned from a fulltime schedule to only three days a week.  She develops custom product for the gift shop and enjoys exploring the gift world for new and exciting products to entice visitors at Hearst Castle. This new schedule allows her more time for new projects and interests.

Dawn enjoys hiking with Eric and Copper, the dog, renovating projects and keeping up on the ever-changing healthy food trends. Life is good, especially getting together with family and with daughters Kaitlin and Skylar and new granddaughter Thyri.


Alison Rittger

Alison Rittger made her commitment to UU in San Francisco in 2004. There she served on many committees and was a Worship Associate as well as chairing the Worship Associate Committee. She would not have moved to Los Osos in 2016 if she had to do without a UU connection. Additionally, her life is enriched by Buddhist meditation and living the ethical precepts of Buddhism, which are similar to the first and seventh UU principles. Also in Los Osos is the youngest of her three sons and his daughter. Before retiring to the Bay Area, Alison taught in the Los Angeles School District as part of a 30-year teaching career. She was a journalism adviser for a weekly school paper for 13 years and advised the yearbook as well. Currently, she lives with Foxiebeau le chien, her soulmate dog. Her interests include dog-walking, binge-watching, theater, opera, reading, listening to dharma podcasts, studying Buddhism, and writing and editing. She is currently trying to cut down on the use of first-person pronouns.


Adele Anderson, Recording Secretary

  Kerry Taylor, Treasurer

Kerry was born in Eugene, Oregon and raised across the river in Springfield as an avid Oregon Duck.  Her family was Baptist and her parents were active church leaders.  She earned a BA in Spanish and Psychology and a MA in Public Affairs at her beloved U of O. The majority of her working life was spent in county government administration, with budget and finance being a focus in each of the positions she held in three different California counties.  Her interests include reading, more reading, and photography.

Kerry discovered the UU in 1994 when she enrolled son Patrick at Starr King Parent Child Workshop in Santa Barbara. That wonderful preschool was housed at the Unitarian Society of Santa Barbara. She and husband Kent became first time UUs here in 1998 after being pledging friends. She has served on the RE Committee, assisted in RE for nine years, was on the Board of Trustees, serving as Board President for two years, and has been on the Treasury Team since 2006. She welcomes this opportunity to serve the Board and the congregation as Treasurer.