Meeting House Leadership
The following are elected by the Congregation:
Board of Trustees
Beth Avery (President) is the daughter of a UCC minister… a Peace Corps volunteer… former Manager of a YWCA housing program… and (now) a single-person retiree, and no stranger to the not-for-profit creative processes. After graduating from Douglass College of Rutgers University in 1967, Beth joined the U.S. Peace Corps and requested assignment to Africa. For two wonderful years, she lived in a small village in Sierra Leone, West Africa, where she taught English and math (outside under the Mango trees) to grade-school children and worked with villagers to plant new varieties of vegetables.
Upon re-entry to the USA, Beth worked at part-time jobs to acquire more skills and to find an organizational culture that “fit” her definition of meaningful work. She discovered these possibilities at the Boston YWCA. The “Y” was investing time and money into the area of “affordable housing” and had recently built a 200-room housing/hotel facility on Berkeley Street. Beth asked for an informational interview and applied for a job at the Reservations Desk. For the next 34 years, she learned her way from Reservations to Manager. Her work included supervision of a staff of 25, resident relations, property management, contracting, resident accounts and annual preparation of a $2 million budget. She assisted YWCA administrators in extending services to male travelers and students, and to partner with Social Service Agencies to integrate some clients who were rebuilding their lives after substance abuse, or who had achieved long-term mental health stability under supervision.
Beth now lives in Orleans. Her photography hobby gives her “no end” of smiles and challenges. The UUMH has become a primary source of joy in her life.
Joan Caputo (Vice President)
Dorothy Howell (Secretary) Dolly Howell grew up in Maplewood, New Jersey, the sixth child in the family, nine and half minutes after her twin sister. They all spent their summers in North Chatham where their mother's father had bought a property in 1896. He was a UU minister and with three other ministers decided to have a cooperative farm on what is now known as Minister's Point. As a third generation UU while in New Jersey, the family attended the Summit UU church whose minister at the time was Jacob Trapp.
Dolly attended Colby Junior College and moved to San Francisco when she graduated. She was married to Ted Howell in Stow, Massachusetts and they moved west where they had their first child. Coming back east to be near family, they had two more children and resided in Seekonk, Massachusetts, attending church at the Unitarian Church of Providence, Rhode Island.
As a stay-at-home mom Dolly became involved in the PTA, School Committee, League of Women's Voters and Adult Education in Seekonk. After her first child went off to college she went back to college and got her degree from Rhode Island College in Early Childhood Education and Psychology. For next ten years she ran a day care center, then worked in public school as library aide, and finally as an aide to students with Asperger’s. When Ted was ready to retire they chose to be on the Cape near the family summer home and their son and his family. Ted and Dolly joined the UU Meeting House in 2006 and Ted died in 2011 of Lewy Body Dementia. Dolly has been involved with the Friends of Pleasant for nine years and is now Associate Member from Harwich to Pleasant Bay Alliance. She enjoys her large extended family, sailing, tennis and reading. Most of all she loves the Cape and hopes to keep it for the generations to come.
Joe Zahka (Treasurer) has been a UU for over 40 years. Early in their marriage, Joe and his wife Debbie searched for a religion that was consistent with their values of peace and social justice. Joe appreciates that Unitarian Universalism is both logical and compassionate. As an added benefit, all of the UU churches he has attended are fairly old buildings and require a lot of maintenance, something he has enjoyed doing since he was a kid.
Jeffrey S. Dykens, CPA, grew up outside Boston in Sherborn, Massachusetts, attended Lawrence Academy in Groton, Massachusetts, and Amherst College. He has lived in Chatham since 1976, where he first worked as a commercial fisherman and seafood wholesaler from 1976-1988. In 1986 he married Julie Eldredge, and attended Northeastern University from 1988-1990, where he earned an M.A. in accounting. His first accounting job was with Deloitte and Touche Ross accountants in Boston, where he became a CPA. In 1992, Jeff joined the staff of Cape Cod Hospital, and still serves Cape Cod Healthcare today, serving as Chief Operating Officer of the Falmouth Hospital. In 1999, he earned an MBA from Northeastern University and Certificate in Public Health from Harvard. Jeff and Julie have three children: Andrew, Abigail, and Joshua. Jeff is active in the Chatham and Monomoy Regional schools, and currently serves as Chair of the Board of Selectmen for the Town of Chatham
Program Council Chair
Endowment Board Chair
Nominating Committee Chair
Note: The names of current Committee Chairs, who are appointed by the Trustees or elected by their respective committees, appear with their committees on the Committees page.