Meet Our Staff

Jim McKinley

Jim McKinley

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Ministry is a second career. I came to it by way of ecology and conservation biology. I found religion by way of experiences that opened me to a sense of something more – you might call it mystery beyond knowing. I found a home in Unitarian Universalism because of its traditions of freedom to frame and understand that mystery in ways that fit personal experience and connect with larger wisdom.

And now over the years, the Unitarian Universalist traditions have given me the tools I need to find my way in a religious landscape. I understand religion not to be a set of particular beliefs but an orientation – an orientation for life. A good bumper sticker that has probably already been done might read: “Unitarian Universalism – Religion for Life.” Our congregation offers help and hope, comfort and challenge.

I have been in professional ministry for 20 years. I have a master of Divinity from Harvard Divinity School and a Master of Science in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Utah. I was the director of Protection Planning and Stewardship for the Florida Office of the Nature Conservancy and for three years after divinity school. I worked as Assistant Director of the Red Hills Conservation Association. I served two years as Interim Minister in Tampa Florida and am now in my 17th year as minister here in Hendersonville.

I am the proud parent of a daughter who is a freshman in college. For recreation I enjoy outdoor activities, paddle sports in particular and I have stepped back onto the path of a long, late-in-life journey of learning to play the guitar.

Judith Long

Judith Long

Affiliate Community Minister
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I serve as a Community Minister, serving as the Executive Director of The Free Clinics for the past seven years. TFC engages over 250 active volunteers to provide quality healthcare to low-income, uninsured members of our local community. During my tenure, TFC has tripled in size with respect to staff, programs, budget, and most importantly patients served. In 2008, TFC successfully completed a $1.85m capital campaign to build and new facility and launch an endowment, ensuring access to quality healthcare for those in our community without access.

As UUFH’s Affiliate Minister, I work closely with the Social Justice Outreach Team to engage our congregation in living our mission, especially to engage in practice and service for love, justice, and peace.

Katherine Price

Katherine Price

Music Director
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Katherine , in addition to being a highly accomplished flutist with solo and concert credits at major New York venues, is also a skilled and experienced collaborative pianist. She began to study piano when she was five years old, flute at age ten, and in high school was active as a pianist and flutist, and accompanist for choirs.

Educated at Stetson University, the Brevard Music Center, the Juilliard School,and the Dalcroze School of Music, Ms. Price has had many accompanying opportunities. These included playing for flute juries during her years at Juilliard, Music Director for the Triangle Theatre Company in Durham, NC; accompanist for the 92nd Street YMHA Professional Children’s Theater Company; choral accompanying at schools in Long Beach, NY; Blair Academy, and the Kent Place School in NJ, and extensive experience as a pianist and flutist for instrumental and chamber music recitals. She also worked on the artistic and administrative staff of the NJ Youth Symphony, and the NJ Youth Orchestra.

Ms. Price is the pianist, choir director, and Director of Music at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Hendersonville, the pianist for the Carolina Concert Choir, and maintains a private teaching studio.

Vicki Benavides

Vicki Benavides

Director of Religious Education
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I am a northerner by birth but a southerner in my heart. My family spent their annual summer vacations in Bat Cave beginning before I was even a year old. When I married my husband, Daniel, 33 years ago, we spent our honeymoon in our family’s cabin on the mountain side in Bat Cave and loved it so much we moved there less than a year later.

Children have always held a special place in my world. My first job was as a babysitter and in college I worked as a nanny for a professor’s family. I studied Interior Design and Textiles at Michigan State University and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Textiles. After trying my hand at retailing for a few years, I realized that the work was not personal enough for me.

It took several long years for our children to come in to our lives. And as each year passed with no babies, children became more and more important to me. We were blessed with twin boys 24 years ago. Both have completed their undergraduate studies, one is a teacher and the other is a geology grad student.

I found my bliss when I began working with children in a local after school program and later as I worked with the boys in scouting. When we joined the UU Fellowship of Hendersonville, I knew that I had found my spiritual home. I was pleased to be offered the position of Director of Religious Education in 1997 and accepted happily. My work here has truly changed my life. I see things differently. I am clearer about what I believe, value, and what matters most to me. I feel that we give the children and youth of this congregation a gift. We give them the gift of welcome and acceptance.

Sandy McGlashan

Sandy McGlashan

Office Manager
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I have been fortunate to have had two careers in my lifetime, both of which I enjoyed immensely. I graduated with a BA in Business from Queens University in Charlotte, and began my first career as an advertising agency media planner.  I worked my way up through the advertising ranks, and last served as the marketing director for the largest residential construction company in Sacramento, California.

After the birth of my son, Pete, my priorities changed, and more than 20 years ago, we moved to Hendersonville. I began my “second career,” working for non-profits, including Habitat, UUFH, Mainstay, United Way, and Lutheridge, and was able to raise my son in a safe and caring community.

After more than a decade since my first employment with UUFH, I returned in 2014 as the Fellowship’s office manager.  I am thrilled to be working with such a caring, dedicated, and creative staff, and love reconnecting with long-time members of the congregation and meeting those who are new.   I feel blessed to have a job that I love, to have a wonderful family, supportive friends, and to live in one of the most beautiful places in the world!

Bill Elder

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Bill has been a member of UUFH since 2007, holding various volunteer positions on the Board of Directors, led the sanctuary renovation project, and has served in other volunteer roles over the years.

Currently, he functions in a staff role as the bookkeeper for the fellowship, assuring that income and expenses are properly processed and reported to the fellowship Treasurer.

Bill’s other interests include music, travel, motorcycling, photography, woodworking and others. He shares his life with Catherine Lynch, who he persuaded to marry him in 2011. They live in Hendersonville a few blocks from UUFH and participate in many fellowship activities.