Constance (Connie) Simon is a member of the First Unitarian Church of Philadelphia and a Seminarian at Meadville Lombard Theological School in Chicago. She comes to us highly recommended as a seminarian with fine preaching, pastoral care, social justice and organizational skills. From September, 2016 to June, 2018, USG will be the Teaching Congregation where Connie can learn and expand in her growing ministry.
Here are some highlights from Connie’s biography:
I was born and raised in Oxford, Pennsylvania, a small town on the Maryland border in southern Chester County.
My religious history is very simple. My family has been very involved in the Presbyterian church for many years. My mother was the church organist for 40 years. After my father’s death, I began to question the concept of God and the purpose of organized religion. I’d never even heard of Unitarian Universalism before 2009, yet somehow it was the perfect fit for me. Now, I know very clearly that “religion” is the values, principles and convictions by which I live my life. The definition is different for each of us. My religion is Knowledge, Integrity, Service and Love. To me, “spirituality” is the exercise of religion – it’s living my life in a way that reflects my deepest values, principles and convictions.
I graduated from Indiana University with a major in telecommunications, a minor in music. To supplement my education, I enrolled at Northeastern University School of Law in Boston, graduating in 1987.
Afterward, I spent six years as an attorney for the Massachusetts Department of Revenue. It was important to me to work in government and I considered myself a protector of the citizen’s money. This was my first “service.” In 1992, Time Warner called. I spent six years in the Finance, Government Relations and Customer Operations departments of Time Warner Cable in Memphis followed by eight years in Legal and Regulatory Affairs at Time Warner Telecom in Denver.
I left Time Warner in 2008 and took a position as Colorado State Political Director for Progressive Majority, a candidate training and organization, with the intention of running in the 2010 election. After my sister’s stroke in November 2008, Progressive Majority offered me a transfer to its Pennsylvania office so I could come home to take care of her and her disabled husband. Unfortunately, three weeks after I got here, they closed the office and laid everyone off. I sold real estate while my sister was in the hospital then accepted a position at Bank of America in 2011, thinking that I would be able to transfer from Home Loans into Legal or Government Relations but that was not to be. After working with distressed homeowners and later as an Independent Control Tester responsible for reviewing how Bank of America handles customer accounts after receiving notification of the customer’s death, I left the bank in May 2015 to join the People’s Emergency Center as the Director of its Center for Employment and Training. In this role, I work with low- and no-income area residents and help them secure training, employment, financial counseling and access to public benefits.
Connie has been an active leader at First Unitarian Philadelphia including serving as Congregational Moderator (President) and leader of the Ministry Leadership Team. She has recently moved into Mt. Airy/Germantown, so we will enjoy her presence and company not only at USG but also in our neighborhood.
Connie will be in the building at least 15 hours each week: Tuesday 10:00 am – 2:00 pm; Thursday 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm; Friday 1:00 – 4:00 pm and Sunday 8:30 am – 3:00 pm. Stop by and say hello or send her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and suggest a time to meet. Let’s connect!