Seventh in our series of interviews with members of our congregation, we feature long-time members, childhood Religious Education (RE) alums and original Mosaic contributors Leslie Pohl-Kosbau and Stan Jewett.
Leslie’s parents brought her to First Unitarian as an infant and she grew up in the excellent Children’s RE tradition and sang in the Children’s Choir. She worked on the owl and rabbit in the tree tiles of the Mosaic. She knew Stan who was also in the RE program, and remembers times spent with Demi Angell and Janet Dafoe, among others. Leslie’s mother accompanied the Children’s Choir, which sang every Sunday in the Children’s Chapel.
After college and as a young adult, Leslie recalled, “I checked back in by going to worship services to see if First Church was still right for me.” She joined the Church as an official member just after her first child was born. “It was a good place for my children, as they were nourished by the same regard for the sense of wonder and freedom to seek their truth that I had experienced as a child.”
Leslie has served our congregation in numerous ways. She was a Board of Trustees member and Vice Moderator, Chair of the Religious Education Committee, a Nominating Committee member, and Co-chair of the UUA Outreach Group. Leslie was also the Adult Programs Chair, and then the staff person for five years in the 1980’s-90’s. In 1991, Leslie started and led the Community for Earth Group. Currently, Leslie is the Chair of the Mosaic Restoration Committee, and serves on the Art Wall, Archives, and UUA Outreach groups. “I have found that First Unitarian Church has many talented leaders and people willing to help each other.”
Leslie has also served our larger UU faith movement. She represented First Unitarian at more than 15 General Assemblies (GAs), and worked with the Mt. Hood Cluster of UU Congregations on the two that were held in Portland. In the early 1990s, she chaired the UU denomination’s Seventh Principle Project, which became the Unitarian Universalist Ministry for Earth in 2005. If this wasn’t enough, Leslie found time to serve as the president of the UU Pacific Northwest District’s governing board.