ALTHEA'S BOARD OF TRUSTEES
BOB BERCAW (he/him)
Bob is very excited to become a Board Member at Althea! The very first time he and his
husband, Jerry, attended Althea during a visit to Denver in 2019, he knew it would be his
spiritual home as soon as they relocated to Denver. Bob became interested in Eastern
Philosophy/Religions after living in Korea and Japan from 1967-1970. His search for a place in the US where he would feel at home finally happened in 1989 when a New Thought center in San Francisco “found” him. He became a licensed Religious Science Practitioner in 1991 and absolutely loves that way that the Althea community is so open, inclusive, and dedicated to exploring the mystical teaching of all religions.
Bob has served on Boards at other Spiritual Communities for many years as Treasurer, Vice President, and President, and looks forward with love and excitement, to continue growing spiritually through being a part of this amazing Community. Now almost fully “retired” Bob enjoys exploring Denver (still searching for new bakeries, and ice cream parlors), reading, and weaving on Lilla, his Swedish loom.
BARBARA VAILLE (she/hers)
Board Vice President
Over 25 years ago, Barbara came to Althea, then the First Divine Science Church of Denver. She was drawn by the mysticism, the ministers and people in the congregation, the classes and other opportunities to be involved, the history, and the building itself. Amazingly, this is the first time she has served on the Board in all these years! Barbara is a Colorado native, going back several generations. She’s divorced with two adult children.
After 45 years in education, including two in Morocco with the Peace Corps, she retired in 2014. Now she has more time to follow her passions of being in nature, especially hiking; spending time with friends and family; traveling; and focusing on her spiritual life—her connection with the Divine and the subtle realms.
GINNY CASTLEBERRY (she/hers)
Ginny found Althea in 2016 and dove in headfirst to its amazing community. She currently serves as Board Secretary and is committed to Althea's mindful yet robust growth and continued diversity. In the working world, Ginny gets excited about empowering healthier humans as the Executive Director of Healthy Learning Paths, which brings custom health curriculum into schools along the Front Range, pre-K through high school. Ginny has 25+ years working in the corporate world, for-profit and nonprofit. Her degrees are a BS Finance and an MBA Entrepreneurship, and she is a champion of the Denver/Boulder startup community, especially around empowering entrepreneurial women.
Ginny is an almost-native to Colorado, with 25 years in Denver. She is married to a wonderful guy from Texas, and they have an effervescent and unstoppable 11-year-old, Naomi. Family time with her husband and daughter are top of the list, but more stamps on her passport are always a good thing.
STEPHANIE FRANK (she/hers)
I grew up and attended college in the upper peninsula of Michigan. After college I worked in the clinical laboratory field for 16 years during which time I met my husband who had been a coworker. When my husband entered dental school at the University of Nebraska, we attended a Sunday school class within a large Presbyterian church. It was there that I was exposed to the work of Joseph Campbell which opened my eyes to a whole new perspective on religion and spirituality, i.e. the commonality in the spiritual teachings of many cultures. That class was also my introduction to meditation and the emotional healing work of John Bradshaw.
Upon moving to Denver in 1989 I saw a description of the First Divine Science Church in a newspaper listing, and it became my new church home. Soon after I decided to make a career change and earned a Master of Social Work degree, then practiced clinical social work until my retirement in 2021.
"I was drawn to Althea by the philosophy of oneness and respect for all paths to oneness. I love the diverse guest speakers and teachers who come to Althea!"
DICK PETERSON (he/him)
RICK SHAFFER (he/him)
Born in Denver, I spent my first 3 years in Golden. Along with my older brother and younger sister, we moved to Durango, my parent's hometown, in the summer of my 3rd year and were there for the next 12 years. My great grand parents were among the founders of the Christian Science Church there and were CS Practitioners. They also helped to fund the CS Church which was was built in 1922 and is still in use today. Needless to say, I grew up in Metaphysics.
At age 15, we moved back to Denver where I finished high school. I attended Ft. Lewis and Metropolitan State College. The Vietnam War shortened my College days. I served 6 years in the Colo. Air National Guard. I worked 5 years as Sheriff's Deputy for Jefferson County. I left there and after trying some other career opportunities, finely landed in the Real Estate appraisal business, where I spent 38 years.
I attended Mile High Church for several years, then Unity of the Foothills, where I was on the board for 3+ years. I found Althea in 2015. I previously served on the Althea Board for approximately 3 years. I now live in Denver and am semi-retired.