Rev. Dorothy Harris - Founder and Pastor


Rev. Dorothy Harris Photo


Reverend Dorothy Harris is the founder and pastor of the Unity Fellowship Church of Columbia in Columbia, Maryland. Originally from Newburgh, New York, Rev. Harris received her biblical foundation from her parents, Rev. Johnie Harris and Mother Minnie L. Harris. Rev. Harris accepted Christ and was clear of her call to the ministry at 18 years old, at which time she was appointed to the Jr. Missionary Board of Soul Saving Station C.O.G. I. C. in Newburgh, New York -- the church in which she was raised, and where she also actively served in many other capacities in the church's ministries.

 

Rev. Harris is a career educator, with a 30+ year history in higher education administration, including Dean-level roles in Academic Advising and Enrollment Management and faculty positions in English, American Studies, Women's studies, Communication and Reading. She currently teaches Communication at Loyola University Maryland and English at area community colleges. She also serves as a Day of Trial mediator for the District Court of Maryland.

 

Rev. Harris has been the recipient of several local and national awards, including "Outstanding Young Women of America," and "Outstanding Advocate" by the National Resource center on First Year Students and Students in Transitions.

 

Rev. Harris has been actively involved with the Unity Fellowship Church Movement since 2003 at which time she was a member of the Unity Fellowship Church of Baltimore. She was ordained Reverend in 2007. She served in many capacities during her tenure at UFCB, including as President of the Women's Ministry, A member of the Trustee Board, Deacon, Minister of Administration, and Assistant Pastor. She was recently elected to the office of Secretary of the National Board for Directors for the Unity Fellowship Church Movement.

 

Rev. Harris holds a BA in English, an MA in American Studies/ Women's Studies, a JD from the University of Baltimore.

 

Of all of the jobs she has held, and of all of the commendations she has received, Rev. Harris is most honored and proud of the founding and planting of the UFC Columbia. The Columbia church, chartered in October, 2010, celebrated its second anniversary in November 2012 and in October 2013 will see its first Diaconate class receive ordination at our National Holy Convocation.

 

Rev. Harris also has two adult children, Azubike and Chioma of whom she is very proud.

 

 

  Deborah Dunn - Chairperson




Deborah Dunn, a founding member of the Unity Fellowship Church of Columbia in Columbia, Maryland, is a native of Prince George's County, MD. She has always had a deep and abiding love for the Lord. With an MBA from Johns Hopkins, Deb has been instrumental in organizing, developing, and leading the Trustee Board on the "business" of the church. She was instrumental in forming the board, and securing the non-profit status.

 

With a 30+ year career in the medical field, Ms. Dunn has made healing —both physically and spiritually—her life's work. As a PAC, MBA, Physician Assistant, her areas of interest are transgender and LGBT medicine. Recently, she was part of national team of transgender medical professionals which revised the guidelines treating and prescribing medications (hormones) to those that are transitioning. These guidelines address relevant trans- medical issues and will be published and used to teach medical students nationwide.

 

Ms. Dunn holds a MBA from Johns Hopkins, a Physicians Assistants Degree from Howard University, and a BS from the University of Maryland. Additionally, Ms. Dunn is a musician. She plays guitar and bass for several churches.

 

  Debora Alesha Ruffin - Student Clergy




Because we believe there are many within a given congregation who have been called to minister, serve, teach, and lead, UFC Columbia provides opportunities for growth to those wishing to do so. We facilitate this with our Student Clergy. Our current Student Clergy, Debora Ruffin, was raised in Baltimore, MD. She brings with her past experiences in ministry and community outreach. She received training at Ministry Training School in Long Beach, California, and participated in Encounters Missions International (EMI). In 2007, and she traveled to South Africa where she performed outreach. While a student in the Masters of Divinity program at Lancaster Theological Seminary (LTS), Debora traveled to Haiti and Santo Domingo further cultivating missions work.

 

She is currently on track to become ordained in October 2013.

 

  Dr. Carol Geer-Williams, Ph.D. - Trustee, Sunday School Teacher




Carol Geer-Williams, Ph.D. was raised in Atlanta, Georgia the oldest of 2 daughters by a college professor and a social worker. Her maternal grandmother provided her childcare. In addition to showing her lots of love, she taught her the principles of responsibility, dedication to work and providing for those less fortunate than yourself. She always remembers being in church as either a Sunday School participant or as an usher. Her sense of social justice was formed by the Civil Rights Movement that was occurring in the segregated south of her childhood.

 

Dr. Geer-Williams did well in school and won an academic scholarship to Duke University that included studying abroad at Oxford University in England. She received her Bachelor's degree in psychology from Duke and attended Howard University for her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. Her internship was completed at Walter Reed Army Medical Center as a Captain in the Army. She also worked at National Rehabilitation Hospital, a juvenile detention facility and with foster care before starting her own private practice in 1991. Since that time she has worked with individuals and couples in improving their understanding of themselves, improving their mental health and improving their relationships with others.

 

Dr. Geer-Williams married in 1990 and has two daughters. Her oldest is currently in college while her youngest is in high school. Her hobbies include scrapbooking, raising animals and feeding her soul whenever she can at the ocean. There has never been a time when God has not been a major part of her life serving as an usher, a Sunday School teacher or on a Women's committee. She joined Unity Fellowship Church of Columbia when she discovered that her last church had a negative and discriminatory view of who is allowed to be a Christain. She believes that God loves all his children and will welcome those who believe home one day. Currently she serves as a Trustee and Sunday School Teacher at Unity Fellowship Church of Columbia. She believes that she is the one being blessed by serving at such a loving, caring and accepting church.

 

  Hope T. Whye - Deacon Candidate




Hope T. Whye founding member of Unity Fellowship Church of Columbia, learned about the church from a friend. As she explains, "I felt at home and embraced by the "LOVE IN ACTION", so I became a member. My ministry from the be ginning has been outreach. I decided to accept the invitation to become a deacon candidate because I believe, 'To whom much is given, much is required'."

 

Raised in a large family with deep spiritual roots, Hope gave her "yes" in 2011 when she became a Deacon Candidate. A lover of peace, Hope is certified in Community Mediation and Community Conferencing. Additionally, she is a Consultant/Trainer for Restorative Discipline Practices.

 

Hope holds a BA in Drama and Speech Communications Education from Delaware State University, a MS in Human Services Administration, from Coppin State University and University of Baltimore, and is an AmeriCorps Alumna, 1998.

 

Hope is currently employed with Social Services Consultants, Ltd. in Howard County Public Schools System