Iona Dickinson, Minister

IMG_0077a-crop-blur-brt20-vignette2-crop-211-209The Reverend Iona Dickinson has been serving as Pastor at University City United Church (a United Church of Christ congregation) since June 15, 2015. She brings with her more than a decade of pastoral experience and has a love for experiential worship, small group conversation, and teaching.

Prior to coming to University City, Iona had been serving as pastor at Delmar United Methodist Church outside of Albany, NY for nearly 5 years and Claremont United Church of Christ in southern California for 8 years. And before that, she studied Environmental Science and Religious Studies at Allegheny College and earned her Master of Divinity at the Claremont School of Theology.

When she’s not at church, you will likely find Iona spending time with her family (spouse Phil and two daughters), reading, swimming, cooking, or napping (she has two small kids so this goes with the territory!).

Cheri Metier, Youth DirectorIMG_0102a-crop-vignette-122-169

Rev. Cheri Metier is an ordained minister through the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).  She attended San Francisco Theological Seminary for a year and completed her Master of Divinity at Lexington Theological Seminary.  Cheri earned a teaching credential and B.A. in Political Science from CSU, San Bernardino.
Her call to ministry is to inspire and equip Kindom builders and is thrilled to be entrusted to journey with the Youth as they fashion their spiritual selves.
Cheri is a born and raised southern Californian.  She and her wife, Lorraine Joseph, live in Rancho Peñasquitos with their 4 dogs, 2 cats and 2 turtles.  They have two grown children, John and Ariel who also live in SoCal.

staff_jeanne-128-169-grayJeanne  Stutzer, Choir Director

Music has been a part of Jeanne’s life since an early age. Her mother was an organist/choir director, and Jeanne began singing in church choirs while in grade school. She played clarinet from 7th to 12th grade and cherished her time in marching and concert bands. At Converse College in Spartanburg, SC, she switched to vocal studies and earned her Bachelor and Master Degrees in Music Education there. She became “hooked” on directing choirs after taking a conducting course during her studies at Converse. She began her career at UCUC with the Seraphim Singers in 1975. Her choral training/experience continued as a member of Mesa College Chorus under the direction of Dr. Richard Chagnon. Her musical horizon was greatly broadened in 1996 when she joined the La Jolla Symphony and Chorus under the direction of Dr. David Chase, who has been a mentor for her since joining that organization. Jeanne has been the choir director for UCUC for over 20 years.

Ruth Sayre, Organiststaff_ruth-128-169-graytr

Ruth has been a church organist/pianist since the 5th grade, studying piano and organ privately and at West Virginia Wesleyan College. Other musical education received at Mesa College and Point Loma College. Other churches served were in Maine, Washington State, and Izmir, Turkey, before coming to San Diego where she has been organist at Pioneer UCC, Lemon Grove UCC, and University Christian DOC. She has been leading and ringing handbells for over 30 years. Ruth is a retired teacher, having spent the last 20 years of teaching as a Special Education teacher after obtaining a MS degree and credential from SDSU.

Catherine-IMG_1389-122-169Catherine Arias, Administrative Assistant

Catherine Arias, a San Diego native, joined the staff of UCUC in November of 2015. Prior to becoming the administrative assistant here, she owned her own small business, a flowers shop, for 2 decades. After a couple of years of “retired life” she had a desire to feel more productive and “needed” and found her way to UCUC. She can typically be found Tuesday, Wednesday,Thursday and Sunday mornings in the church office helping to see that things run as smoothly as possible. Stop by and say hello… she always has a smile for everyone.