Our minister and staff

Minister

Reverend Michael WalkerRev. Michael Walker joined DuPage UU Church in August 2019:

Being a parish minister means many things to me: leader, preacher, counselor, advocate, manager and role model…  Standing as a role model is a given, but here is why: consider the cumulative effect of influences – I influence ten people, who each influence ten more – a powerful way of sharing one’s values.  Furthermore, I often say that “walking one’s talk” is critical, both in the sense of integrity and self-trust, as well as to engender trust from others.

My background includes counseling and small group facilitation. From working as a psychiatric nurse, to being a volunteer leading support groups for ‘coming out’ youth, to the completion of a hospital chaplaincy internship, I have frequently found myself called to counseling and helping situations.  I continue to use this skill-set in the form of pastoral counseling.  My hope is that members will find congregations at which I serve to be warm and supportive in their times of joy… and hardship.  Furthermore, I am building on this experience in counseling, as I pursue a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute, in the Santa Barbara, CA area, where I attend occasional intensive courses in addition to my online coursework.  I envision this experience a deepening of my ministry in ways that I hope provide meaningful and helpful healing experiences for congregants and others that I serve.

You may email Mike or reach him at 630-505-9408, ext. 702

Director of Religious Education

Steve Cooper, Director of Religious EducationSteve Cooper C.R.E. has been our Director of Religious Education since 2005. Steve, a long-time member of the church, embodies a passionate commitment to instilling Unitarian Universalist values in the youth of our church and incorporating them into the whole life of the church. He is a modern-day Renaissance man whose talents inform both his leadership and his cooperative work, building trust with our youth and attracting a wide range of interested volunteers. Steve knows that youth are the future of our church and our world. 

You may email Steve or reach him at 630-505-9408, ext. 703.

 

Congregational Life Coordinator

Mary Law, Congregational Life CoordinatorMary Law has been the Congregational Life Coordinator since 2016. She has been a member of the church since 2009. She believes that being welcoming to others is a spiritual practice and enjoys assisting visitors and members of the congregation in deepening their connections with others. Before becoming the CLC, Mary taught religious education classes and was on the Youth Religious Education committee. Currently, she is a member of the Media Services committee. Mary lives in Aurora with her husband, 2 boys and 1 cat. She attended Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and has a Bachelors in Mass Communication.

You may email Mary or leave a voicemail for her at 630-505-9408, ext. 704.

 

Choir Director

Vickie Hellyer, Choir Director

Vickie Hellyer has been our Choir Director since 1997. The Adult choir has grown from a seven-member ensemble to 42 choristers. Her enthusiastic directorial vision inspires great music from both Adult and Youth choirs. She brings expertise and new ideas from her past and current conducting of other church choirs in the area. She also teaches private voice lessons and many church members are among her students.

Vickie received a Bachelor of Music degree with emphasis on Vocal Performance from the University of Illinois. She has sung and soloed in many professional choirs, and performed leading roles in musicals in professional and local theaters. She engages in continuing education in voice, theater, and music through classes and conferences. She is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing and the American Choral Directors Association. Vickie has a part-time position at Northwestern University as a recruiter for HARP—an NIH-funded hearing research project. Vickie lives in Skokie with her wonderful husband, Jon Siegel, and their endlessly entertaining cats.

You may email Vickie or leave a voicemail for her at 630-505-9408, ext. 710.

 

Congregational Administrator 

Sheri Regalado, Office ManagerSheri Regalado has supported staff and members of the congregation since 2003. She edits and produces the bi-monthly newsletter and also manages office functions including database maintenance, processing contributions, and assisting members and outside organizations with room reservations. Her exceptional organizational skills and long-term experience with the church are vital to the smooth functioning of this busy community.

Sheri holds an Associate's Degree in Paralegal Studies from Central Pennsylvania Business School. Her previous experience includes six years working for an attorney and several years as an at-home mother.

You may email Sheri or reach her in the office at 630-505-9408, ext. 701.

 

Community Minister

Community Minister, Rev. Myriam RenaudThe Rev. Dr. Myriam Renaud became our community minister in May 2013. Raised Unitarian Universalist, she was ordained as a UU minister in 2005. Her ministry to the community takes the form of academic scholarship. She is currently an advanced doctoral student in theology at the University of Chicago Divinity School. Her dissertation focuses on the concept of God, taking a UU-friendly approach grounded in philosophy and ethics. 
 
Rev. Renaud is a frequent contributor of theology columns to the UU World, regularly presents papers at UU and other conferences, works at The Parliament of World Religions, has taught liberal theology for the CLF and as a Lecturer at Meadville Lombard Theological School, and serves as the Managing Editor of Sightings, a twice-weekly, online publication sponsored by the Martin Marty Center for the Advanced Study of Religion. She also blogs at TheNakedTheologian.com. She is a member of the UUA’s Commission on Appraisal.
 
Rev. Renaud holds a Master of Divinity degree from the University of Chicago Divinity School. A software engineer in her first career, she earned an undergraduate degree in chemistry and a graduate degree in computer science from the University of Missouri at Rolla. She lives in Chicago with her teenage daughter, Sidney, and her husband, Paul, a musician and fiction-writer.