Vestry Candidate Information

Candidates for Senior and Junior Warden: 

Shawn Nowlan:  I have served on the St. Andrew’s Vestry since 2019.  In 2022, Mother Elizabeth has asked me to consider being Senior Warden, upon Roger’s term ending.  I very much appreciate the opportunity to serve the parish in this way.

As a refresher for the parish, I was born and raised in Boulder Colorado to parents from Nebraska.  I followed my parents back to their alma mater, Union College in Lincoln Nebraska.  After college, I received my J.D. from the University of Nebraska, and began practicing law with a legal specialty in retirement and pension plans, as well as non-profit federal tax law.  In 2004, I moved back to Colorado for an LL.M. in Taxation from the University of Denver.  I now continue my non-profit and retirement law practice for the Office of Chief Counsel for the IRS here in Denver.

My parents were Seventh-day Adventists, but very early I began to have experience with the Anglican tradition, starting (in retrospect) with C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia.  I loved the books so much I started reading everything I could find by Lewis and grew to love Lewis’s take on Christian spirituality (and discovered it was Anglican).  In law school, one of my colleagues invited me to the Church of the Holy Trinity in Lincoln, Nebraska.  I started by joining the choir, and I ultimately was received into the Episcopal Church in 1993.

Soon after moving back to Colorado, I heard about St. Andrew’s and its music program, and dabbled in attending for years. After my friend Eric McCalla became closely associated with St. Andrew’s, I also moved to a closer relationship with the parish. In 2018, the parish and clergy proved an amazing help and support as I began a journey that ultimately led to a kidney transplant in January of 2019. 

My participation in the parish currently includes:

  1. Serving as one of the mentors for St. Andrew’s joint Education for Ministry (EFM) program EFM ministry (with Church of the Holy Redeemer).
  2. Serving as one of the Lay Eucharistic Visitors (LEV) in St. Andrew’s LEV ministry.
  3. Serving on St. Andrew’s Vestry (as noted earlier).
  4. Most recently, renewing my choir experience and joining St. Andrew’s Choir.

I continue to l love the exceptionally beautiful liturgy and music we find here at St. Andrew’s, and I also love St. Andrew’s commitment to social justice and outreach.  That is, I cherish this parish’s intentional and proactive outreach ministries that focus on many of the most marginalized parts of our society.  To me, St. Andrew’s embodies the best parts of the Anglo-Catholic tradition in the Episcopal Church (and Anglican Communion generally).   I would like to do my part in preserving and carrying this tradition into the coming years.

One of the things I value the most about my time on the Vestry is the intentional listening that is a part of our process.  Active listening takes time, but I believe that the Holy Spirit often works best in an environment where we actively and respectfully listen to each other as we discern our course as a parish.  This is something I find valuable and worthy of preservation as we discern our path forward in 2022 and beyond.

Lisa Sisneros, Jr. Warden: I’ve been a member of St. Andrew’s for over 20 years, and served on the Vestry from 2013-2016. I have just finished my first year as Junior Warden. I was born and raised in the Catholic Church but left in my mid-20’s when I felt that my soul was no longer being fed. After a number of years searching for a church, I found St. Andrew’s on Christmas Eve and immediately felt welcome. I was invited to the service for the music but stayed for the community (and the music!). Although I had been a singer in the Catholic Church for many years, I chose instead to sign up to do readings and, later, to train as an acolyte. In my other life, I am an Orthopedic Technologist. After 25 years of clinic work, I began working independently as an instructor teaching medical staff in the proper application of splints and casts for orthopedic injuries.  I also serve as the full-time caregiver for my wife, Carol, who was diagnosed with Young Onset Alzheimers in 2018. We love cuddling with our cats and singing with our chorus, Harmony: a Colorado chorale. We travel when we can and enjoy volunteering in the Paleontology Lab at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science.

 

 

Candidates:

Maryella Morley: I’m Maryella and I have been a member of St Andrews for 4.5 years.  I have served on a vestry at a previous parish- an experience where we hired an interim rector and subsequently a new Rector.

I currently co-chair the Welcome Ministry, serve as a reader, serve as acolyte for the Still Point service and am Altar Guild for that service as well.  I have also attended a general convention.  In my former parish I served as Lay Eucharistic Minister.  I have also served on the grounds committee – yes, I mowed the lawn.
My spiritual gifts are pastoring and leadership and I am a strong communicator, all of which would be assets on a vestry.
I am a cradle Episcopalian and, if elected, would like to be part of seeing St Andrews grow as the spirit guides us.
 
 
 
 
Heather Culwell: My name is Heather Culwell. My husband Jonathan and I began attending St. Andrew’s in September of 2009, when our son Cayden was 3 months old. We found the community warm, enlightened, and welcoming. We resonated with several things after our first worship experience, the church’s architecture and acoustics accentuated the gorgeous choral music, and Mother Elizabeth’s sermon made us think and feel deeply. We were hooked! Jonathan and I signed up for the Catechumenate class that fall with Rev. George Magnuson at the helm; it was an awe-inspiring experience. Being confirmed into the Episcopal church by Mother Elizabeth during the Easter Vigil of 2010 was another moment affirming this community is where I can just “be.” In the spring of 2013, we welcomed Lilah into our lives, and she was greeted by this parish’s wide arms into the body of Christ. We have raised our children to be thoughtful in their speech and to communicate with people of all ages from a young age. They have formed many friendships in our community during worship, coffee hour, and Godly Play. And yet they are in need of a vibrant youth ministry. If I am elected to the vestry, I would strongly support a focus on the growth of youth formation at St. Andrew’s.

My participation at St. Andrew’s includes serving in the nursery, in the undercroft hosting coffee hour, in the evening with family ministries and planning several all-parish retreats, attending and hosting Movable Feasts, and most recently singing in the choir. As I sit here writing this and reflecting, I truly can’t imagine where I would be and what my life would be like if I hadn’t stumbled upon this “sanctuary in the city”.  When I am not at St. Andrew’s, I work as the Director of State Health Initiatives for Contexture, a non-profit Health Information Exchange in Colorado. I have my degree in Sociology and am passionate about people: who they are, how they relate to each other, and how they help one another. I also enjoy running, hiking, spending time in the mountains with my family, walking our dog Tilly, tending to my vegetable garden, and making up new soup recipes.

Mike Ogborn: I am honored to be nominated to serve on the vestry. St. Andrew’s has been our beloved church home for over 10 years. From the moment we stepped into the church, Jill and I knew it was where we belonged – the liturgy, the sermons, the music, and the loving community. I am a cradle Episcopalian, having been raised in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and attending the cathedral in that city. I went to high school there and attended the University of South Dakota, earning a B.A. and J.D. After graduation, we lived in Sioux Falls and then Lincoln, Nebraska and then moved to Denver in 1984. For over 25 years, I worked for a company that owned small railroads all over North America, retiring in 2012 to start my own consulting business. Jill and I have two adult children and four grandchildren.

Since joining St. Andrew’s, I have been blessed with the opportunities to be involved in a number of committees, task forces, and ministries, including serving on the vestry from 2015 to 2018. I am currently serving on the Mission and Outreach Ministry, the Building Our Vision Committee, the Welcome Ministry, the Stewardship Committee, and the Audit Committee. Like many churches, we are facing many challenges, many arising from the pandemic, and I believe my life experiences and involvement with parish life would allow me to contribute in addressing those challenges. It would be my privilege to serve on the vestry if elected.

Scott Barnette: I was born and raised in rural Wyoming, and was baptized and confirmed at St. George’s Episcopal Church in Lusk, Wyoming.  The Church was an important part of our family life growing up and I was involved in a number of capacities through my high school years.  Following graduation from high school, I entered college earning my Bachelor’s degree in pre-medicine.  During this time I took a break from the Church.

When I moved to Denver in the early 1980s, I found that something was missing in my life, namely a spiritual life with the support of a community.  Over the next few years I found myself searching for a Church and as a gay male, I found that finding a supportive and inclusive Church community was challenging.  In 1990 and due in part to a recommendation from a friend, I found St. Andrew’s.  I will never forget the first Sunday that I attended.  I found that I did not have to apologize for who I was and I was accepted unconditionally.   Since that time with one short break, I have found St. Andrew’s to be my Church home and I feel blessed to be a part of this community.

Over the years, I have participated as an acolyte, lay eucharistic visitor, card ministry, a supporter of St. Elizabeth’s School, and recently I have joined Education for Ministry.  At the diocese level, I have served as Chair of the Diocesan AIDS Commission, as well as an Advisory Board member of the National Episcopal AIDS Commission.   

In terms of my professional life, in 2015 I retired from the State of Colorado after serving as a manager for approximately 30 years, first as Manager of the HIV Care, Treatment, and Prevention programs for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and then as Manager of EBT and Public Assistance benefits with the Colorado Department of Human Services.  I determined that I was not quite ready for retirement and in 2018, I was reemployed as a corporate manager supporting the States in the issuance of Public Assistance benefits.  I retired for the final time in January of 2021.

I enjoy volunteering in a variety of capacities with the Church and community, with my focus on assisting the homeless and those that are under-served and marginalized within our community.

I am honored to be nominated to serve as a member of the Vestry of St. Andrew’s.   I look forward to the opportunity of supporting our community as we continue to grow, as well as supporting our areas of outreach.  Hopefully, in some way I can make positive contributions in support of our community in the years to come.