Advisory Committee

Kelly Bennett

Kelly Bennett is a museum collections and exhibitions expert.  She currently serves as Chief Preparator at Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive where she manages the design and logistic needs for over forty installations annually.  She is the founder of Art Pro Net (APN), an online resource supporting the needs of the contract arts professional community in the Northern California. Kelly has a Bachelors in Fine Art Photography from the University of Houston, and a Masters of Art in Arts Management from the University at Buffalo.

Class of 2018-2021

Judith Berling

Judith Berling earned a B.A. from Carleton College in Religion, and Ph.D. from Columbia University in East Asian Languages and Cultures. She taught in the Departments of Religion and East Asian Languages at Indiana University for thirteen years, and then came to the Graduate Theological Union as Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of Chinese and Comparative Religions.  She has served as President of the American Academy of Religion and the American Society for the Study of Religions. In her retirement, she has immersed herself in her lifelong love of the arts: visual arts, dance and ballet, music, and theater, and she is studying acting with a professional actor.

Class of 2018-2021

Lydia Brawner

Lydia Brawner researches performance in contemporary art with concentrations in gender studies and religious studies. As an artist she has performed at numerous venues in New York City and the Bay Area. Brawner is a PhD Candidate, Performance Studies, New York University where she currently resides. 

Class of 2015-2018

Rev. Dr. Nancy Hall

Rev. Dr. Nancy Hall, Vice President of the CARe Advisory Committee, is a faculty member at the American Baptist Seminary of the West, where she’s taught since 1989. She serves as Associate Professor of Ministry and Congregational Music and Director of Contextual Education. Nancy is also the pastor and musician for First Baptist Church of Berkeley. An active member of The Hymn Society in the United States and Canada, she was editor of The Hymn, the Society’s quarterly journal, from 2009 to 2011. Nancy is author of the Judson Press book, The New Manual of Worship (2018). She holds the DMin degree from San Francisco Theological Seminary, the MDiv from ABSW, and a BA in Music from San Diego State University.

Class of 2018-2021, Second Term

Rev. Katharine Harts

The Rev. Katharine Harts is Pastor at Fairfax Community Church, where she founded the Center for Embodied Spirituality, dedicated to the integration of mind, heart, and body into an expressive wholeness. Through the Center, Katharine shares her work as a dance educator, choreographer, and aerialist. In addition to Master’s Degrees in Culture and Spirituality and Theater Arts/Dance, Katharine studied with Anna Halprin and Daria Halprin-Khalighi at the Tamalpa Institute, earning a Certification in Expressive Arts. 

Class of 2018-2021

Dr. Munir Jiwa

Munir Jiwa is the Founding Director of the Center for Islamic Studies and Associate Professor of Islamic Studies and Anthropology at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. He holds an MPhil and PhD in anthropology from Columbia University, and an MTS from Harvard Divinity School. His research interests include Islam and Muslims in the West, Islamophobia, media, art and aesthetics, secularism and religious formation. He is the recipient of foundation awards and grants from the Andrew Mellon Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of New York, Ford Foundation, Henry Luce Foundation, and the Social Science Research Council. Currently he is serving on the Islamic Studies Advisory Group for Public Education at Stanford University, and on several committees and boards at the University of California, Berkeley, including the Religion, Politics and Globalization Program, the Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion Public Theology Inquiry Group, and the Islamophobia Documentation and Research Project at the Center for Race and Gender. Dr. Jiwa received the Sarlo Excellence in Teaching Award at the GTU in 2015. His forthcoming work is titled Politics of Exhibition: Artists and Muslim Identity in New York City.

Class of 2015-2018

Nate Klug

Nate Klug is the author of Rude Woods, a modern translation of Virgil’s Eclogues (The Song Cave, 2013), and Anyone, a book of poems (The University of Chicago Press, 2015). He works as a minister in the United Church of Christ and currently serves as Pastor of First Church Redwood City.

Class of 2018-2021

Kit Novotny

Kit Novotny serves as Young Adult Minister at First Church Berkeley, United Church of Christ, where she founded "open chapel @ first church," a radically inclusive, experimental worship gathering for young adults. A graduate of Yale Divinity School and University of Chicago, Kit has a background in professional theater, performs with Berkeley Players improv group, and is a certified yoga instructor. She lives in Albany, CA with her husband Nate Klug, and they are expecting a baby this spring.

Class of 2018-2021

Dr. Laura E. Pérez

Laura E. Pérez, Associate Professor, Chicano/Latino Studies, University of California, Berkeley. Perez is the author of Chicana Art: The Politics of Spiritual and Aesthetic Altarities (Duke University Press, 2007). She curated UC Berkeley's first and only US Latina/o Performance Art series in 2001-02; co-curated, with Delilah Montoya, the multimedia exhibition Chicana Badgirls: Las Hociconas at 516 ARTS gallery in Albuquerque, New Mexico, from January-March of 2009, and curated Labor + a(r)t + orio: Bay Area Latin@ Art sNow at the Richmond Art Center, CA (April-June 2011).

Class of 2015-2018

Kathrin E. Randall

Kathrin E. Randall is an educator and non-profit professional who works at the intersection of art, schools, and museums. She is an expert in volunteer training, event organization, and program administration, having worked the docent and continuing education programs at SFMOMA. Kathrin studied law, philosophy, and art history in her native Germany, and has received Master’s Degrees in social history, law, and museum studies. In addition to CARe, Kathrin is also affiliated with the German International School of Silicon Valley, the Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra, and the West Berkeley Fencing Club. 

Class of 2018-2021

Rev. Richard Smith

Rev. Richard Smith, Treasurer of the CARe Advisory Committee, serves as Pastor at the First Congregational Church of Reno, and actively engages the arts in worship and other church activites. An avid bluegrass musician, he earned a BA from the University of Redlands and a M.Div from the Pacific School of Religion.

Class of 2018-2021, Second Term

Dr. Devin Zuber

Dr. Devin Zuber, Assistant Professor of American Studies, Religion, and Literature, Core Doctoral Faculty the Graduate Theological Union, Center for Swedenborgian Studies. His current research and teaching interests include environmental literature and ecocriticism, aesthetics, and Emanuel Swedenborg. Selected publications include, A Language of Things: Swedenborg and the American Environmental Imagination (University of Virginia Press, forthcoming 2017), and Blake and Swedenborg: An Anthology of Critical Essays (Swedenborg Foundation, forthcoming 2016).

Class of 2016-2019

STUDENT ADVISORY BOARD MEMBERS

Yohana Junker

Yohana Junker is an educator, doctoral candidate at the GTU, and artist who affirms art, imagination and theological inquiry as belonging together. She is committed to liberative pedagogies that make education available to all. One of the vital academic questions she pursues is how contemporary works of art can shape and transform the ways in which we understand our relationship to culture, history, the environment, and lived religion.
 

Olga Yunak

Olga Yunak is a third-year doctoral student at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California, in the interdisciplinary area. She studies Eastern Orthodox Anthropology, psychology, and arts. Her research interest is the space of ambiguity at the “standpoint” between the image and the beholder in the liturgical context of the Byzantine church. Ms. Yunak was a recipient of the Edmund Muskie Graduate Fellowship and holds an MBA degree in marketing and management from CSU-Hayward. She is a mom to two spirited girls and a supporter of the farm-to-table movement and urban gardening.