Rev. Carmen Brocklehurst
Rev. Carmen Brocklehurst (Vice-President) is an accredited T´ai Chi Chih, Seijaku and Meditation instructor, as well as an ordained Minister of Divine Science. Her 13-part T´ai Chi Chih TV series continues to be shown on PBS stations throughout the country. She is a founding Board member of the Albuquerque T´ai Chi Chih Center. Carmen teaches classes, retreats, and workshops nationally and internationally for churches, corporations, and conferences (including the New Mexico Governor’s conference) for all levels of students. Carmen has a Masters degree in Education from the University of New Mexico. She has served on the Board of this Retreat since 1990, currently as Vice President. Carmen is among the longest-attending members of the Retreat, missing only a few after first attending in 1977. She and her husband, Brock, a Lifetime Member of the Retreat, live in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Rev. Howard Caesar
Rev. Howard Caesar (Board Member) has served Unity and the New Thought movement for almost 40 years, with 31 years at Unity of Houston as Senior Minister and CEO of a ministry reaching thousands. A founding member of the Leadership Council of the Association for Global New Thought (AGNT), Rev. Caesar is recognized as one of the foremost leaders and speakers in New Thought traveling the world to meet with religious leaders such as His Holiness the Dalai Lama. In 2000, he was inducted into the prestigious Martin Luther King, Jr. Board of Preachers of Morehouse College. Howard is an active leader and member of Unity Worldwide Ministries, having served two three-year terms on the Board of Trustees and on numerous committees. Recognized with the Voice of Unity Award for Excellence for more than 25 years of broadcasting work in radio and television, he is also the recipient of the Light of God Expressing Award, and the Lifetime Achievement Award; accolades given by his peers for his dedication, commitment, and leadership. He recently completed two terms on the Board at Unity World Headquarters, three years of which he was elected to be Chairperson. Howard first attended the Big Sky Retreat in 1985, and has served on the Board since 1986.
Gail Courville’s magical journey from her birthplace in Maine to the Montana Big Sky Retreat is creating a full circle of love and joy in the lives of many. She is a businesswoman, parent, grandparent, entrepreneur, farmer, and healer. Motivated by the belief that she came to life to live out loud and become a resource for joy, she dances merrily with her vision of love healing.
Her career path, the nascent long-term care industry from the late 1960’s until retirement in 2000, inspired her respect for all stages of life. Upon opening the first proprietary home health agency in New Hampshire, she quickly expanded the services to 24-hour 7-day a week in-home care. Gail’s belief that care is an around-the-clock service initiated a new standard in home health care protocol.
In 2000, new endeavors and adventures began for this dynamic woman. As a recently retired industry leader and empty-nester of three adult sons, she relocated to Virginia. The arrival of her first granddaughter coupled with finding her spiritual home at Unity of Bon Air opened her heart to something new. In 2014, her dream of an expanded purpose of sowing and harvesting love began with her creation of Serenity Farm in beautiful, pastoral Maidens, Virginia. This vision embraces retreats and workshops for healers, spiritual teachers, seekers, and artists. As steward of 109 acres of land as her home and a healing center, Gail is dedicated to the cultivation of a spiritual environment that enriches and allows a peaceful place to connect with one’s authentic self.
Since 2012, the Big Sky Retreat has inspired and nurtured Gail’s faith and playful spirit for which she is most grateful. Gail joined the Board in 2016.
Dr. Sheldon Deal
Dr. Sheldon Deal (Board Member) is the owner-director of the Swan Clinic of Natural Healing in Tucson, Arizona, and has written several popular books on nutrition and natural methods of healing. His innovative views of healing are widely quoted. Sheldon always brings new and fresh ideas on the way we look at our bodies and how we learn to live in them. His knowledge of Applied Kinesiology and his ability to teach new techniques makes him world renowned. He has lectured throughout Europe, Russia, and Australia for twenty-two years. With his wife, Cindy, Sheldon has been a staunch supporter of the Retreat since 1981. He joined the Retreat Board in 1999.
Joe Dickey (President) has had a lengthy, successful career in the entertainment industry. He says he’s just like everybody else in Southern California — singer, actor, writer, producer, and, oh yeah, a Retreat President. His performances in nightclubs, studios, stadiums, theaters, and churches throughout the country have placed him in front of almost 7,000,000 people. He has written for PBS stations, penned speeches and special material for live shows and telethons, composed many songs, and produced highly commended motivational listening programs. He has written two books: Stories I’ve Told More Than Once and The Funeral Singer. He has a degree in Business Administration from Emory University. He resides in Simi Valley, California, with his wife, Mary Morrissey. Between the two of them, they have seven children and ten grandchildren. Joe has attended the Retreat every year since 1982, serving as Music Director from 1983 through 2014, as a Board member since 1984, and as President since 1999.
Dr. Charles Geddes is a founding member and currently serves as Treasurer of the Big Sky Retreat. He has 44 years of ministry and served on the Board of Directors of International Centers for Spiritual Living. He was awarded an honorary doctorate for his years of contributions and in 2004 he was voted Minister of the Year. He now resides in Ft. Lauderdale and is the Founder and Spiritual Director of Bridges of Wellness, a non-profit organization. He serves on the Leadership Committee for Focus Ministries with Centers for Spiritual Living – creating new paradigms of ministry reaching Spiritual Explorers from many pathways. Bridges of Wellness has as its ultimate goal: for all to realize that the inner work we do ripples out to the world for healing and transformation.
Rev. Michael Gott joined the Board in 2013 and is the Music Director. He is an accomplished musician – singer/songwriter/pianist – and has been a successful entertainer, performing all over the world, for over 25 years. He is also an outstanding speaker and teacher, now the Senior Associate Minister at Unity of Houston, Houston, Texas. He has been the Special Guest Musician for the Retreat since 2009, and is always at the top of everyone’s “favorite singer” list. Michael’s many skills and his long-time study of metaphysical principles makes him an invaluable member of the Retreat.
Joan Hansen and her husband Mike live in Buena Vista, Colorado and attended their first Big Sky Retreat in 2009. She remembers Joe Dickey telling her and Mike at Registration in 2009 “This week will change your life” and emphatically states that it has! She and Mike developed a new data base and registration system in 2010 and she became our Registrar in 2011. She joined the Board in 2013. She was introduced to the Science of Mind Philosophy thru the television show New Design for Living, hosted by Dr. Fred Vogt (one of our founding members and a former Retreat President), and has studied with Rev. Marty Bacher, Dr. Roger Teel, Rev. Donald Graves and others. Her corporate career spanned 18+ years in Land Administration in various management positions for the largest U.S. independent oil and gas producer. Her passions are traveling, reading, knitting and the Big Sky Retreat.
John Moore was guided to attend his first Big Sky Retreat in 2014. He thought he was going as an attendee, but due to unforeseen circumstances, some last minute schedule changes, and a few miracles, two weeks before the retreat, he was asked to facilitate a workshop. His decision to say yes turned out to be one of the biggest blessings in his life. After a warm welcome into the Big Sky family, and facilitating two more Family Constellations workshops the following year, John was honored to accept the invitation to join the Board in 2015. To say John brings a diverse background to this Board might be an understatement. After graduating from Syracuse University with a degree in Acting and Advertising Design, John worked in theater administration at Syracuse Stage in Syracuse, NY and Arena Stage in Washington, DC. In 1992, he left the cold climate behind to be part of the magic at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL where he was a puppeteer and parade performer for seven years. After Disney, John moved to South Florida to be closer to the ocean and to answer the call to become a healer. He graduated at the top of his class from Educating Hands School of Massage in Miami, and had a successful career as a Licensed Massage Therapist for thirteen years. The year he studied massage was also the year he started attending church services at Unity on the Bay. Those two healing places changed the course of Johnʼs life forever. Since then, he has been dedicated to his spiritual path and committed to helping others on their own path of healing and wholeness. Life continued to unfold in miraculous ways for John, bringing him the perfect teachers and life experiences and leading to the work he feels he was born to do today as a Life Coach, Minister, Family Constellations Facilitator, and A Course in Miracles Teacher. John teaches classes and facilitates workshops at home in Fort Lauderdale, FL as well as all over the U.S.
Our Past Board Members:
We are eternally grateful to all of our past Board Members for their dedication and guidance:
Bette Bogart 1977-1998 (serving as Secretary from 1977-1998)
Rev. Helen Brungardt-Pope 1977-1994 (serving as Vice President from 1977-1984 as as interim President in 1984 upon the death of Rev. Al Heard)
Connee Chandler 1998-2005 (serving as Secretary from 1998-2005)
Mansfield Davis 1978-1982
Rev. Ruth Fatur 2008-2013
Rev. Donald Graves 1999-2013 (serving as Secretary from 2005-2011)
Dr. Roy Graves 1977-1989 (serving as President from 1984-1988)
Rev. Al Heard 1977-1984 (serving as President from 1977-1984)
Dr. Ron Masters 2007 – 2016 (serving as Secretary from 2012-2016)
Dr. Clarke Odden 1977-1999 (serving as Vice President from 1984-1986)
Barbara Resendez 1997-2015 (serving as Retreat Coordinator from 1998-2015)
Joseph Richards 1977-1978 (serving as Treasurer from 1977-1978)
Dr. Roger Teel 1994-1998 and 2005-2006
Dr. Otis Thomas 1982-1988
Dr. Fred Vogt 1977-1999 (serving as President 1988-1999)
Rev. Kathy Vogt 1999-2007
Gladys Wright 1977-1997 (serving as Treasurer 1978-1996)