Aug 192016
 August 19, 2016

A Woman President for the Unitarian Universalist Association

Posted by Rev Roger

Posted on August 19, 2016

SFG pic coralThe next spiritual, organizational, and fundraising leader of our denomination will be the first woman in that post!

All three current nominees are women; two of them under age 50, which would give us the youngest UUA president elected since 1985. Another candidate, a bit older, is a former Catholic nun. All bring varied talents and experiences–and mutual respect for one another. One will be elected by lay and clergy delegates at the UUA’s General Assembly in New Orleans in June 2017.

To learn about them, see the UU World magazine online.

To meet the candidate I am supporting with my endorsement, volunteer time, and campaign contributions, attend the August 28 service. Susan Frederick-Gray will be our guest preacher. Also, I will also host a fundraising reception for her campaign at 5;00 PM that afternoon.

Here’s her background: Susan’s parents raised her in Eliot Unitarian Chapel near St. Louis, MO. She has a B.S. in molecular biology from the University of Wisconsin and her M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School. She was the intern and sabbatical minister at First UU Church of Nashville, TN, where she met her husband, then a seminarian at Vanderbilt. They have a son, Henry, now six.

Susan knows church growth, having revitalized the congregation in Youngstown, Ohio, during her ministry there. Since 2008 she has led the Phoenix congregation to grow in membership, financial commitment, and loving relationships.

In addition to her educational and congregational record, Susan also has an arrest record with the notorious Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, whose horrific jail treatment she’s experienced first-hand. She leads her congregation in opposing his human rights abuses and advocating for the dignity of migrants in Arizona.

Based on her Arizona leadership and partnerships with local and migrant-led organizations, she was recruited by the UUA to lead the 2012 Justice General Assembly in Phoenix. We 5,000 UUs made a mass witness out in the desert at the sheriff’s Tent City, holding our candles high in the dark and very hot air, singing songs and showing that we Stand on the Side of Love. While at Justice GA, many UU volunteers also helped hundreds of immigrants prepare paperwork for citizenship. Susan’s local partnerships and her leadership with us made this happen.

For our congregations to grow and our UU movement to thrive, Susan calls for organizational clarity, starting with a clear mission. She calls for spiritual vitality to sustain us in the work of love and justice.

Susan has collaborated with interfaith and activist partners that share our values. She is grounded and passionate, practical and visionary.
Click here to see her platform, photographs and many endorsements on her campaign website, or her Facebook page. See tweets or postings at #sfg4uua. Let me know of your questions.

Feel free to leave a comment or question about this post.

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