What is the board focusing on this August, you ask?
Transparency – One focus is how to be more transparent with our work, and as collaborative as possible with the broader congregation! We’ve talked about how to be present; how to communicate and keep those channels open; how to document and present what needs to be available for public record; and how to best listen and understand the needs and desires of the congregation. Hopefully you will see evidence of this; and we will share our ideas as we go.
Listening – We want to hear from you! We are all learning about the importance of listening – of truly seeing and hearing one another. If you have input, questions, concerns, ideas, desires, or interest in taking on a leadership role, please talk with us! (firstname.lastname@example.org) We will be represented at a table in the back of the Social Hall each coffee hour to invite conversation.
Planning for our Bridge Time Until Rev. Christopher Arrives – This is at the top of our list, of course. We are working with the Transition Working Group, who is doing an amazing job already (see their updates in this Westside Week). We are also preparing for Ingathering on September 15th, and the start of our church year. And we are working with Rev. Christopher to discern what to move forward with now, and what will best wait for his arrival.
Strengthening WSUU’s Core Governing Work —
We are continuing the work started with last year’s board in several areas:
• Equity Training – Thanks to the groundwork from last year’s board and the Racial Justice Change Team, our current board is bringing in a highly-recommended workshop on September 21st on “Strategies to Promote and Sustain a Culture of Inclusivity and Equity,” that will be offered by Richard Kim of Cultures Connecting (https://www.culturesconnecting.com/ The workshop is open now for staff, the board, and current WSUU leaders to register, and then available space will be opened for broader congregation registration.
• Personnel Committee — We are forming WSUU’s new Personnel Committee, which will be a board appointed committee comprised of 3-5 members who bring professional personnel related experience. Last year’s board gave us a vision document for the work of the personnel committee, produced by experienced individuals in the congregation. More information to come!
• Right Relations – We are learning about right relations practices used by the UUA and other congregations, and will be forming a Right Relations team for our congregation this fall, also with 3-5 members. This is also a board appointed group, who will need time to form as a team, and training and support to fill their roles. This team can guide us through the development of a new covenant later in the fall or early next year, as soon as they are ready. Our current covenant is over 20 years old! Here is a link to a 2009 article about our 2007 covenant development — https://www.uua.org/interconnections/143004.shtml. And here is a link to that covenant on our web site — https://wsuu.org/covenant-of-right-relations-2/.
• Nominating Committee – We are examining the role and structure of this committee and discerning how we can most effectively bring our democratic process to life. We are considering how to grow our paths to leadership in the community. Rev. Christopher has many ideas around this, and we look forward to working with him in this area!
With all my best,
Jade Lowry, Board President