In the Episcopal Church, the vestry serves as the “Board of Directors” for the parish corporation.  The vestry is responsible for determining the policies and goals of the congregation and is to communicate with the congregation about the goals, concerns, and functioning of the Church in the modern world.  The Rector is a member of the Vestry and the president of the parish corporation.  He  or she presides over meetings of the Vestry and the congregation.

Our vestry members serve 3 year terms, and we elect a new class of vestrymen and women each year. Nominations are made by a committee and by the parish at large during our annual meeting.  We encourage anyone who wants to serve on the vestry to raise a hand and let us know.  This is not a closed group or a club of some kind.  We draw our leaders from across our parish spectrum, and we don’t want people to be shy about expressing an interest in this kind of service. The eligibility requirement for election to the Vestry is as follows:

Canon 11, Section 4.
Only lay persons, who are confirmed adult communicants in good standing of the church, as defined in General Convention Canon 1.17, shall be eligible for election as Vestry members of such church. However, regardless of eligibility of a person for election, no person shall be elected at duly convened congregational meetings to consecutive full terms on a congregation’s Vestry or Vestry Committee.

Current vestry members include Al Rider (senior warden), Tracey Ragsdale (junior warden), Joe Cheely (treasurer), Charmaine Trice, (register), Karen Heunnekens, Kim O’Shea, Doug Pera, Betsy Rawles, Bruin Richardson, David Rose, Fay Lohr, Tom Slater, and Russell Wyatt.

Class of 2020 Vestry Members

St. Mary’s elected four new members of the Vestry at the Annual Congregational Meeting on Sunday, January 29, 2017. The four new members are:

Karen HuennekensKaren Huennekens

Karen has been a member of St. Mary’s Church for 20 years, volunteering alongside her husband Mike in various aspects of the Church, ranging from teaching Sunday School and assisting with high school youth group to ushering and participating in various outreach programs. Karen comes from a marketing and event planning background with an emphasis on nonprofit fundraising and currently serves as the Director of Development for the Bolling Haxall House Foundation, home of The Woman’s Club. In her spare time, Karen teaches a wide range of classes at Tuckahoe YMCA. Karen and Mike have two children, Preston and Kendall, and live in Manakin Sabot.

Kim O'SheaKim O’Shea

Kim and her family began attending St. Mary’s in 1996. Over the years she has been involved with Children’s Ministries as a teacher, with Alter Guild, and has served as an Usher. Kim currently is involved as a volunteer teacher’s aide at St. Andrew’s School. She is married to Tim O’Shea and they have three adult children – all confirmed at St.Mary’s!


 Doug PeraDoug Pera

Doug is married to Jane duFrane and they have two children, Gray and Lucie. He and his family have been active in St Mary’s in a number of ways, including Jane’s vestry membership, the stewardship committee, ushering and the kids active involvement in the children’s program. He has been a member of St Mary’s for approximately 4 years. Doug currently serves as the Metro DC/Chesapeake market leader for Willis Towers Watson, a global insurance broker and consulting firm. He has been with Willis Towers Watson for the past 8 years.



 Russell_WyattRussell Wyatt

Russell Wyatt is married to Sarah Jane and they have two sons, Ben and Andrew. He’s attended St. Mary’s since 1994 and was confirmed in the Episcopal Church in 2007. Over the years, he’s been involved by ushering, being a Sunday School Teacher, volunteering at CARITAS, and sitting on the worship sub-committee of the Discernment Committee. Russell currently works at Commonwealth Commercial Partners and serves on the Board of Governors for the Virginia Home for Boys & Girls and the Richmond Public Library Foundation.