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  • Writer's pictureNeil Allen

Meet our Board Nominees

Judy Klein

Judy Klein comes to us from Denton, Texas. She is retired Office Manager at Mulkey-Mason Funeral Home after 19 years. Prior to that she was Business Manager for The North Texas Daily at Univ of North TX for 22 years, and organist at Blue Mound UMC for 35+ years, having retired three times! She also enjoys crafting, travel, reading, papercrafts, being mother of a wonderful daughter and a retired Senior Navy Chief Petty Officer, and a grandmother of two young men in their twenties. She also is on the FOTC Board.

The hat she wears for this introduction is owner, collector, curator of Bethlehem in Denton County, a gallery for her collection of over 3,600 nativities. (She refers to herself as Mangermaid because someone has to dust all those nativities!) From the international organization, Friends of the Crèche, her gallery has been awarded a 4-star rating, the highest “must see” of their ratings.

Her nativities have been featured in the Denton Record Chronicle, The Methodist Reporter, on Ch. 5 ABC with Mike Costallucci “The WHY Guy”, on Ch. 8 NBC with Debbie Denman who grew up in Denton, and in a Ch 5 news human interest story to usher in the Christmas season which was also carried by The Today Show in NY.

Her nativities have been displayed in Texas in the Denton County Courthouse, The Museum of International Cultures in Duncanville, Blue Mound United Methodist Church, Lewisville’s Christmas Tree Forest at Trietsch Memorial UMC in Lewisville, Denton’s Christmas Tree Festival for 5 years, Saint Jo Methodist Church for 3 years; and at the last 7 National conferences of Friends of the Creche.

Judy was appointed to FOTC Board in 2013 to fill a vacated slot, then elected by membership to serve for the last six years, four of those years as Vice President. In 2015 she was commissioned by the FOTC Board to create a nativity to be presented to the European sister organization of nativity collectors.

Meet Marguerite Hoxie Sullivan (photo available soon)

My first creche was from Sears and Roebucks, purchased at Christmas 1976 when our first daughter was born. Since then the collection has grown to nearly 500 nativities from more than a hundred countries. It is a collection mainly of indigenous nativities made from local materials, such as various woods from Armenia, straw and tin from Mexico, ebony from Kenya, cow horn from the Galapagos. My husband, two daughters and I were in international work which took us around the globe, convenient for collecting.

Since 2017, approximately 160 nativities in my collection have been displayed at the Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land in America in Washington, DC., and the remainder in our home. The Apostolic Nuncio to the U.S. even praised it as showing through different cultures the universality of the Christmas story in his Christmas homily.   It is this universality expressed through an array of dress, fabric and materials that has made me passionate about collecting nativities.

I have spent most of my life in Washington, D.C., in journalism, public relations and media development.  I write the new Creche Herald “Meet a Member” profile and am a 10+ year FOTC member.  Because of travel for work, I was not able to attend a bi-annual FOTC meeting until Santa Fe.

Now mainly retired I have lots of energy, enthusiasm, organizational and communication strategy skills and would love to contribute to FOTC – particularly in communication by working on an overall communication strategy. No one person could carry out all the different communication tasks (Facebook, Instagram, the Creche Herald, etc.) but hopefully a “team”/committee could be built to carry them out.

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