Staff Profiles


Proprietors, Deborah Carney and Cat Kelly

Deborah Carney, Owner

Deb Carneyhbs-58Deborah is the business brain of the partnership, having owned & operated four other successful businesses before she and Cat started Heart, Body, & Soul. An MU alum with an abiding grudge against the Jayhawks (that has not lessened at ALL with MU’s move to the SEC), Deb is also an excellent cook, a certified master gardener, a connoisseur of good Irish whiskey, and active in animal rescue.  As a result, she shares her small acreage outside Columbia with a tribe of dogs, cats, and horses.  She adores hardware stores and power tools, and stops at every thrift shop, garage sale, or junking opportunity within 50 miles of wherever she happens to be — collecting all kinds of strange stuff and turning it into treasure. (Hint: See if you can spot her handiwork throughout much of Heart, Body, & Soul!)

 Cat Kelly, Owner

hbs-43hbs-52A retired attorney and Starbucks addict with a passion for coffee, books, teaching, and the study of spirituality, Heart, Body, & Soul was natural second act for Cat. Unlike Deb, Cat is very good at NOT cooking, kills every plant she touches, and is a danger to herself and others if handed power tools. (She often notes that if stranded on a desert island, she’d be the first choice to kill and eat since her skillset is entirely academic and utterly impractical).  An alum of Washington University School of Law, Cat’s energies for over 31 years were directed to her legal career, which spanned courtroom trial lawyer to leadership of a statewide legal organization of over 360 attorneys. Along the way, she taught as adjunct faculty at both Washington University and St. Louis University Schools of Law, spent 14 years coordinating training conferences and events within the legal profession, and became a nationally-known and requested speaker in her own right. Now she is turning her teaching and organizational skills to coordinating events and teaching classes & workshops at Heart, Body, & Soul!

Our Team

It takes a village to keep the doors open here at HBS.  Our team of awesome staff is an essential (and crazy fun!) part of HBS.  If you haven’t yet had the chance to meet them all, you clearly need to vary your routine and stop in at some different times.

Kayla Boska, Assistant Manager

Kayla — like many of our staff members — began her relationship with HBS as a regular customer who made the mistake of mentioning that she was looking for a new line of work. When she came in to shop with friends one day, we summoned her back to the office for an impromptu interview and the rest is history.   (She told us later she thought she was in trouble and being summoned to the principal’s office.  But the ambush worked!)   Our very own Audrey Hepburn look-alike, Kayla continues to unveil new talents we never suspected — moth charmer, passionate baby bird watcher, and yes, Mafia Boss and the killer at our Roaring 20’s Murder Mystery night.  We love her anyway.

Raven Bren

Raven is a Crone, a writer, a grandmother, mother, and a wife with stories to share from her many years of life experience and too many hours in the sun pondering the meaning of life. After spending twelve years out on the west coast, she moved back to her beloved Columbia  with plans to retire to the boondocks and contemplate the cosmos and meaning of life,  relationships, physics and consciousness, manifesting the life we desire, and how to keep deer from eating the lilacs.   She still does all of those things, but when she decided she’d like to step outside her own private sanctuary a little more, we were more than happy to accommodate her!   You can find her four-days a week now at HBS, where she shares her wit and wisdom, offers palm readings and teaches a broad spectrum of classes.   Raven invites you into her world… bring coffee.

Philana Crite

Philana is relatively recent transplant from the lovely state of Ohio and the newest member of the HBS team.   A die-hard Cleveland Browns fan (who does NOT want your pity, thank you very much!),  Philana hails from a long line of military folk and is an Air Force veteran herself.  When Deb & Cat learned she had worked at the House of Ravenswood, (a delightful metaphysical shop in Yellow Springs, OH they’d discovered on their travels east just a month or so before Philana discovered HBS), it was too synchronous to ignore.  They snagged her into the HBS family before she had time to have second thoughts.    A natural teacher and insatiable learner, Philan slipped into the line-up as if she’d always been here.  Pro tip: She loves dark chocolate haystacks, but then don’t we all?


 Amy Dove

Amy was supposed to just help us out behind the counter on evenings and weekends when she wasn’t busy with her day job at MU, but she’s one of those too-talented-types that just keeps attracting new tasks. So now, she not only helps out on the retail side — she also reads palms (you can sign up for a reading with her at HBS!), creates spell bags & blessing cords, teaches classes, and often steps up to lead our Wheel of the Year celebrations.   Easy to spot on her bright yellow scooter (with helmet to match), Amy slipped seamlessly into the HBS family.  Because after all — like all of our other folks, she was already here most of the time anyway!  (Sensing a theme here??)


 Mary Jane King

Mary JaneMary Jane had just retired from the University of MO … and realized she was not the retiring type … when our paths crossed.  (Lucky for us.)  A long-time and passionate student of both meditation and rocks, Mary Jane is a Buddhist soul with a sense of humor who wields a mean spreadsheet.  She also happens to be a great cook and generous provider of most of our Saturday morning Coffee & Conversation goodies, just ‘because.’    So when she’s not down on their farm in south MO with her geologist husband — (who was so impressed with her rock collection that he married her) — Mary Jane is our go-to, on-call, we’re-shorthanded, please-goddess-help(!), life-saver.


Michelle McBrien

Michelle has the most varied resume on our staff:  studying improv at Second City, teaching English as a second-language in Japan, and now juggler of life as both a virtual assistant and legal office administrator when she’s not here with us.  It’s surprising just how much that skillset fits the need here — with the exception of the Japanese characters she keeps sprinkling in her text messages just to mess with us!  She also happens to be a creator of seriously fun & yummy goodies and has taken over a lot of our social media messaging.  (So if you find a screw-up there, blame Michelle — not Cat, who probably caused it.)  In the meantime, we’re busily plotting all the tasks we can assign to her computer-savvy self…

 Kris Tenny-Brittian


Kris is the keeper of our calendar — a task that is W-A-Y more complicated than it sounds, given the many places news of our events go (website, paper, facebook, meet-ups, etc).  We are immensely thankful that she believes in a good cause and agreed to take on the task in her spare time between her real work as an Ordained Minister, Reiki Master Teacher, Transitions Teacher, and Spiritual Director & Counselor (check out her offerings in that regard at www.Teaology.Life).  It helps that she’s one of those super-organized souls, as well as being a really evolved one.