Our Minister and Staff
Rev. Hillary Collins-Gilpatrick, Minister, was called as First Universalist’s minister in May 2020 and began her role as minister in August 2020. Rev. Hillary holds a MDiv from Harvard Divinity School and a BA from Smith College. Prior to ministering at First Universalist, Rev. Hillary has been a chaplain, Director and Minister of Lifespan Religious Education, a high school teacher, and has worked for youth centers and justice-seeking non-profits. Rev. Hillary is a recently returned native Mainer who lives with her long-term partner, Alexis, and greyhound, Tizzy.
Gwen Matthews, Director of Education and Communications, holds a bachelor’s degree in education and joined First Universalist in January 2016. Prior to working at First Universalist, Gwen has been a freelance editor, advocate for children who survived abuse, and assistant overnight camp director. Gwen values approaching the world with enthusiasm and openness and strives to connect people of all ages with our justice-centered, active, and inclusive faith. Gwen lives in Yarmouth with her spouse, Kai, two-year-old daughter, Arwen, her dog, Bellamie, two cats, Clarke and Lexa, and a continually expanding garden.
Sam Chandler, Music Director, is a pianist, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and educator. Sam seeks the connections that can be made with individuals and communities through music and is always looking to expand his knowledge and repertoire of music to better achieve this goal. As an educator, Sam has found great joy connecting children with their own innate abilities. Sam can be seen playing music both locally and abroad as a jazz pianist, songwriter, and keyboardist mostly in projects that focus on new original compositions. Sam holds a B.M. in Jazz Piano Performance from the University of Southern Maine and began at First Universalist in November 2017.
MacKenzie “Mack” Jones, Children’s Teacher and Youth Facilitator, was born in Portland, Maine. She has a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and history from Wheaton College in Massachusetts. Mack is an advocate for the voices of the youth, and believes strongly in the value of history education for all ages. When not working at First Universalist, she teaches ages K-5 at Fiddlehead Center for the Arts in Scarborough, Maine. In her free time, Mack enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with her cat named Friday. Mack joined First Universalist in September 2021.
Todd Roy, Sexton, cares for the physical building of First Universalist. Todd has been working for First Universalist since February 2020.