Transition Working Group Update 6.26.19

Greetings!  It is with great excitement that we can announce two individuals who have said ‘yes’ as Transition Working Group Co-Chairs in preparation for Reverend Christopher Wulff’s arrival!  Thank you to Laura White and Judi Finney! See Judi and Laura’s bios below.

Purpose of the Transition Working Group

The Transition Working Group will play a very important role in these coming months between Rev. Alex’s departure and Rev. Christopher’s arrival.

The transition work comes in three parts: (1) maintaining a healthy and vibrant congregational community in our gap time, (2) supporting the effort to bring Rev. Christopher to us, and (3) facilitating his welcome once he and his family can join us.

The specific roles of the Transition Working Group will be to (1) serve as the primary liaison to Rev. Christopher during our gap time, (2) ensure we are abiding by the rules of the R-1 visa process so as not to jeopardize this very critical step, (3) make recommendations to the Board of Trustees regarding gap coverage of Sunday worship, pastoral care, and staff oversight, and (4) coordinate the efforts involved with welcoming Rev. Christopher to our congregation.

A very important piece of the liaison role of the Working Group co-leads, Laura White and Judi Finney, is to both share information with the congregation from Rev. Christopher and to share information from the congregation to Rev. Christopher. It is important that ALL congregants feel welcomed to communicate with Working Group members as a pathway of support and attentive listening through this gap period.

R-1 Work Visa

We have retained an experienced immigration lawyer to help us to secure the R-1 visa for Rev. Christopher and an R-2 visa for his family. The lawyer is working with Rev. Christopher and with us to determine what interaction, if any, is allowable through the application period. We have been made aware that going outside of those boundaries could jeopardize the visa process.

In order to make certain we are not interfering with any R-1 visa requirements, we request that you do not engage with Rev. Christopher at this time. If you have questions, concerns or topics that may require his attention, please be in touch with Laura or Judi.

Communications to Come

Thank you to all who submitted nominations and considered serving Westside in this capacity. It is a wonderful list of talented individuals to reach out to for interest and availability.

Watch the Westside Week for an update on composition of the Transition Working Group.

Co-Chairs Bios

Laura White (she/her) is currently chair of the Membership Committee and has also had the privilege of collaborating with others in the Westside community within committees such as Nomination, Greeters, Auction, Leadership Council and MST Nomination. She deeply values the spiritual and community connections of Westside.

Judi Finney (she/her) has been a member of Westside for five years, shortly after learning of the UU Faith. Her first visit left her feeling as if she had found the spiritual community she had been searching for her entire life, and didn’t know existed. She can’t imagine life without this community. Her connection deepened while serving two terms on the board as a Trustee. She has been married to her husband Steve for 21 years. She is stepmother to his two daughters and Grandma Judi to two wonderful teenagers. She loves camping, gardening, reading, music, spending time with family and gathering in community. She is so excited about the path we are on at Westside and being able to support this beloved community during this time of transition.

In love and community,

Outgoing and Incoming Board Presidents,

Shelley Webb and Jade Lowry

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