Vestry Biographies


Karen Nash

I have been a member of St. Paul’s Church for the past 21 years.  I was drawn here because of the Saturday Night Contemporary Service, and quickly found a home.  During the time I have been a part of this community, I have been involved in various ministries, but the ones that have stolen my heart are the youth, the music, and the Saturday night 5:00 pm service.  I say this with gratitude and no small degree of selfishness, for the joy they give me far outweighs any amount of energy or effort they might require.  Married and a first time grandmother, I am now retired and enjoying a life that, at times, I think, is busier than when I was working full time as a social worker and raising two wonderful children.

Tom Calkins

I was born in Los Angeles and lived most of my life in the Northeast.  I am a husband of 33 years, a father of 3 children, an attorney, a hacker at golf and a lover of baseball, each of which at one time or the other has consumed me.  I have been a parishioner at St. Paul's Church for at least 20 years and served in a number of capacities.  As I have moved through life and experienced all that is good and much that is bad, I have grown increasingly aware of the presence of God in my life.  The community of faith that is St. Paul's has brought together my love for the Lord and my desire to do good works while at the same time being surrounded by warm and generous friends. 

Jr. Warden

Dory Holmes

I have been a member of St. Paul's Church, along with my husband, David, for 23 years.  In addition, both our now adult children, Jonathan and  Sarah, were confirmed here.  I have served in many capacities through the years and am currently Treasurer as well as a Eucharistic Visitor, Chalice bearer, Stewardship Committee member and Chairwoman of our Annual Christmas Bazaar.  I love our church!   I find in St. Paul's Church another home - another family of friends who love and support one another as we pray and work together for the community.  From January through November, I was part of New Start Ministry (an offshoot of IRIS in New Haven), a group of volunteers from various community congregations who worked to help settle a young Kurdish refugee family from Syria into a new home in Waterbury.  As the Transportation representative, my responsibilities included everything from providing driving volunteers, to finding bus routes and schedules, to setting up driving lessons, permit test and road test appointments and finally to obtaining car insurance and registering their donated car.  As of today, the couple and their two year old daughter have made many new friends and become a contributing part of their new country!  Hello!


Nancy Twinem

A life-long Episcopalian, I have been a member of St. Paul's Church since 1999.  I have served St. Paul’s in several capacities, including the vestry twice and nine years as Senior Warden.  Currently serving as Treasurer, I was a member of two Search Committees, am a Eucharistic Visitor, a member of the Executive Committee and Finance Committee, the head of the Stewardship team, and a member of the New Start Ministry team (a group working to resettle refugees).  A former educator and educational administrator, and a retired financial services representative, I enjoy golf, gardening and far-flung travels!

Colette Kimball

As a resident of Woodbury for over 40 years, I joined St. Paul’s Church in 1996.  I was raised Catholic and confirmed at St. Theresa’s, but as an adult I found St. Paul’s to be my true home.  I immediately took to the genuine people and welcoming atmosphere which embodied a sense of community that I longed for… and I’ve never looked back.  Over twenty years ago my husband, Stu, and I were married at St. Paul’s and we now have two wonderful children, Jakob and Hannah.

Volunteerism and the idea of  “giving back” is a core value that I strive to model as both a parishioner, educator, and native each and every day.  It is my grandmother’s words that often remind me, “Many hands make light work.”  I have been a co-coordinator of our Sunday School Program as well as a co-teacher for several years. Now that our children are teenagers, I currently volunteer to help with the children’s education program for classes and events wherever my help is needed.  Outside of the children’s education program, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed assisting with such things as baking hundreds of loaves of bread for “Brenda’s Breads”, preparing for our annual Christmas Fair, and I currently sitting on the church vestry.


In addition to being on the vestry since January 2017, I have been a 5th grade classroom teacher for nearly 20 years.  As a professional educator I have volunteered as both a cooperating teacher for student teachers and as a mentor teacher for first year teachers.  Within my school system I also serve on various committees such as the Professional Evaluation Development Committee as well as our Hiring and Spirit Committees.


Being an active member of the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation (STN), I sit on the Tribal Council to serve as a liaison for our tribal members and our tribal government.  I also sit on the Schaghticoke Women’s Traditional Council as well as share my skills as an educator by serving on the Education Committee at the Institute of American Indian Studies in Washington, CT.  Both of our children volunteer at the IAIS each summer as their way of giving back and helping others while remembering our roots..


Each and every time, I find that “giving back” is such a powerful gift in so many ways.  While I frequently donate my time and efforts, I often  feel as though I have been the one rewarded… with good friends, productive work, and an overall sense of accomplishment for having served various communities.

Erika Hale

Raised in a blended Catholic-Episcopal household in Ithaca, NY, I eventually gravitated to the Episcopal church and its traditions as a teenager and my husband, Steve, and I were married at St. John’s Episcopal church in Ithaca. After many moves and adventures, we landed in Woodbury in our first house in 1999 where we quickly started trying to make connections and community ties.  Naturally, we sought out an Episcopal family at St. Paul’s not even realizing the importance of its history and legacy!  Two and five years later, respectively, Fr. Jim baptized our children, Phoebe and Owen.  I have been involved with the Church school since their early years.  Phoebe was confirmed with Fr. Greg in 2016.


Besides being a wife and mother, I have been a nurse at Danbury Hospital for 20 years working in ICU, then on the rapid response team and now in out-patient cardiology.  As life inevitably does, my family was challenged by my diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer in 2014.  The support of my amazing husband and family, as well as the way St. Paul’s wrapped us in love and prayer was unforgettable.


Joining the vestry now in 2018 is a long overdue commitment to a wonderful group of people who have perfected generosity, caring and faith.

Suzanne Dionne

My husband, Gary and I have been members of St. Paul’s Church for about fifteen years.  We immediately felt “at home” here.  The parishioners are a warm and welcoming group of people.  Before becoming a vestry member, I co-taught Sunday school for one year. After that, I taught a couple of classes a year and then was responsible for the bulletin board.  I try to help out with other activities as needed.  My two daughters, Erica and Nicole, attend Sunday school and have served as acolytes for many years.  Erica was fortunate to go to Washington DC for a celebration for acolytes, representing our church.  The girls enjoy all of the special activities that they have been involved with through Sunday school.

I grew up in Waterbury, lived briefly in Torrington and then in Woodbury for over twenty years. I also have a daughter, Jaime, who lives in New York. We have three dogs which are blessed at St. Paul’s Annual Blessing of the Animals.  I have been a public school teacher for twenty-nine years.  I worked in Seymour for four of those years and am currently employed in Waterbury at Rotella Interdistrict Magnet School where I teach art to pre-kindergarten through second grade.  I am very involved with the Connecticut Art Education, serving as President, and the National Art Education, serving as Eastern Region Elementary Division Director-Elect.  During my spare time, I enjoy writing articles for Arts and Activities Magazine, spending time with my family, and vacationing in the Cape.

Gabrielle Drews

Originally from Germany, I immigrated to the US in 1966.  I raised a family as a mom of two girls and a boy who have been adults for a long time.  I now love being a grandmother to seven grandchildren.  I retired from Yale University four years ago where I worked in Molecular Biochemistry as a research associate for over two decades.  

When I came to the States I joined the Episcopal Church, and St Paul’s has been my second home and family since 2002.  I love this church for its active, warm and tolerant community doing God’s work.  I am a vestry member and also a delegate to the CT Episcopal Convention.  I serve as a chalice bearer and an usher, a host to coffee hour and enjoy mentoring young people through the confirmation process.  I have helped with many finite projects such as fund raisers or church dinners and fairs.

My free time is spent in the garden, birdwatching, traveling and mostly spending time with my family.

Russell DePace

My wife Laura, our two sons and I  joined St. Pauls in 1993.  This my second term on Vestry and I have been serving as usher at the 10AM service for around15 years.

As a resident of Southbury for 35 years,  I have been closely involved in youth activities in the town, particularly Boy Scouts where  have been a Scout leader for 26 years. When I can, I enjoy outdoor activities like camping, hiking, fishing and fly fishing. 

Kathy Baird

My family and I joined St. Paul's in the summer of 1994 after transferring from Trinity Episcopal Church in Newtown which we had called home after our marriage in 1981.  I had twelve years of Catholic education, and my husband was raised in the Lutheran tradition.  Both of our families were devoted regular attendees in their respective churches.  We didn't want our children to feel torn between our differing religions, so finding a home in the Episcopal church was a good blend where we felt comfortable raising our children.  I have enjoyed volunteering my time and talents in varying capacities over the years.  When my three children were younger, I co-taught Sunday School and helped with related functions including Christmas Pageants, Happy Birthday Jesus parties, the Good Friday children's service, and Seders.  As they got older, I became more involved with youth group activities:  Halloween parties, Coffee House fundraisers, Confirmation programs, Soldier Care Packages, etc.  After I retired as a special education teacher for almost forty years, I had more time to experience new ministries while still keeping others.  I have been an usher, intercessor, and the Sunshine coordinator for several years.  In January of 2017, I became a vestry member and assumed a ministry that involves pastoral care.  In particular, I oversee the EMs (Eucharistic Ministers), weekly flower distributions from the altar, visitations, and Sunshine.  I enjoy outdoor hands-on activities from doing the planters at the front of the church for a season,  helping at book fairs, baking for any occasion, and just pitching in where needed.  All these activities bring me joy and satisfaction, and affirm that "when the worship is over, the service begins."