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Our Special Guests

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Keynote Speaker
Deaconess Garlinda Burton

M. Garlinda Burton, a United Methodist deaconess, is director of resource development for the General Commission on Religion and Race of the United Methodist Church.  Ms. Burton frequently leads spiritual life retreats and offers motivational presentations and anti-racism coaching for faith-based organizations, civic agencies, colleges and universities, and social-action groups.  She has worked for the international agencies of the United Methodist Church for 42 years.  Her first book, an anti-racism study guide, was published in 1995.  She has written for response, UMMen magazine, and curriculum for the United Methodist Publishing House.


Ms. Burton earned undergraduate and masters’ degrees from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville and Northwestern University, Evanston, IL.  She did additional graduate work through the Wichita State University, and New York Theological Seminary.   Read more

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Music Leader
Amanda Powell

Amanda Powell enjoys a vibrant career leading creative worship and congregational singing throughout the US.  She has served as song-leader, liturgist and workshop leader for numerous organizations including The World Council of Churches, the Presbyterian Association of Musicians, and The United Methodist Women (The United Women of Faith).  Amanda also enjoys a successful singing career, exploring classical, jazz and global styles. Based in Cleveland, OH, Amanda is Director of Music Ministries at Disciples Christian Church.

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General Secretary and CEO, United Women in Faith
Sally Vonner

Sally Vonner joined United Women in Faith, National Staff in 2010 as Assistant General Secretary of Membership and Leadership Development.  Sally is recognized for being a bold visionary, kind, understanding, and willing to meet people where they are in this journey of life.  Mission will always be near and dear to Ms. Vonner and is a primary focus to continue and expand the mission and reach of United Women in Faith as we put our love and faith in action to change the world for women, children, and youth.  Ms. Vonner is a graduate of Southern Methodist University - Perkins School of Theology with a Master of Divinity and Women’s Studies Certification and Texas A&M Commerce with a B.S. in Biology.

* She is Inspirational * She is Influential * She is Impactful   Read more

President, United Women in Faith
‘Ainise ‘Isama’u

Greetings and Malo e Lelei! Kuou tuku ha Fakamalo mo fakafeta’l kihe ‘Otua Mafimafe kihe
tauhi ‘ofa kuo ne fai ma’mku mo kitutolu hono kotoa. My name is ‘Ainise ‘Isama’u and what an
honor it is to be with you all! I thank God for the opportunity and blessing!

My United Women in Faith story began with attending a conversation with Limitless which
would lead me to be a United Methodist Women member for the rest of my life. Today, I am a
mother of an 8-year-old girl, a wife, a friend, a mentor… a leader. Since that conversation life
hasn’t been the same. Almost everywhere I go I meet someone with a United Methodist
Women connection. I always feel welcomed and like I have a place at the table.

The California-Pacific Conference UMW Team embraced me and showed me the way while
allowing me to have my own voice.
Read more

Regional Missionary
Grace Musuka

Grace Musuka was commissioned in 2012 to serve as the Regional Missionary for women, children, and youth in Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, and Zimbabwe. The program’s objective is to empower women to gain competence and skills through leadership development.

Beginning her professional career as a primary school teacher, Grace holds a certificate from Nyadire United Methodist Church Teacher’s College in Mutoko, Zimbabwe, and a Bachelor of
Arts degree in home economics and biology from Drury Unive
rsity in Springfield, Missouri.


Grace says that her faith journey has been shaped by “... family, prayer, quiet time, reciting and memorizing Bible verses and reading the Bible, participating in community work, singing in the church choir, and teaching Sunday school.” Grace and her husband Peter have two adult married sons and three grandchildren.   Read more

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