The Nominating Committee of the United Church of Christ General Synod is encouraging the best minds and creative souls throughout the wider church to bring their gifts to serve the denomination on the UCC Board of Directors.
Committee members hope to identify a number of candidates, in a process that begins in March, to serve on the UCC Board for a six-year term from 2021 through 2027. There are 12 board seats available. The nomination process will remain open through Oct. 1. Candidates can be submitted by Conferences of the UCC, ministers, members of historically underrepresented groups, and even self-nominations. Any member of the denomination is eligible.
Jean Avison chairs the 2020 committee, and said the group hopes to review as many nominations as possible.
"The Nominating Committee of the General Synod seeks to find individuals with a wide array of gifts and a genuine passion for the UCC," Avison said. "This biennium the committee will be reaching out to a wide range of sources to assure that we have a wide and deep pool of nominees. The work of the GSNC is more than just fulfilling the mandates of the UCC Bylaws, it is a genuine discernment process in which the committee engages to make certain that everyone has a voice."
The UCC Board of Directors, which meets twice a year as a group in Cleveland in March and October, is responsible for steering the vision, goals and actions of the national setting of the denomination.
"Serving on the board is a real opportunity for tremendous personal growth," Avison said. "We are casting a wide net because we want to honor the gifts and talents of all in our beloved denomination. With this process, we want to assure that we have voices at the table that represent the diversity in the life of the church."
The Nominating Committee must adhere to the diversity guidelines for board membership, spelled out in the UCC bylaws. Of the 52 members on the board, 36 are at-large positions, 12 of which are filled every two years. The remaining 16 spots are ex-officio positions — such as officers of the church, conference ministers and executives of UCC-related ministries.
Once the Nominating Committee makes its selections for board member candidates, it's up to the delegates of the 2021 General Synod to accept the entire slate of nominees. The committee will also recommend the next General Synod moderator and vice-moderator — the individuals who help move the agenda of the Synod along — for General Synod 34 in 2023.
Board nominations can be submitted online between now and Oct. 1 on a secure page on the UCC website and all information will be treated with the highest confidentiality.
"You have an opportunity to participate in shaping the future of our United Church of Christ," Avison said. "We hope that many members of our beloved UCC give serious consideration to this role, by either self-nominating or being nominated for this exciting opportunity."
To share nominations for the UCC Board and General Synod 34 moderator and vice-moderator, use this page.