Though we are just a few days past the middle of June and the start of the new church year, your new Board of Trustees started the year with a sprint. We had a Board Orientation session on June 4 and our first Board meeting on the 9th.
I have asked the Board to participate in a 12-session board training course provided by the Unitarian Universalist Association via the online Leader Lab over these next 12 months. They stepped up to the challenge and completed the first session by our June 4 orientation session. We processed what we learned and reflected on how we might carry out our primary responsibilities -- stewardship, care, loyalty, and obedience. We are committed to continue learning and to implement the “teachings” in our work together.
We were reminded that the three parts of an effective board are partnership, policy, and conversation.
Partnership with you as members and with you as volunteers at various levels of church life; partnership with our ministerial leadership and professional staff; and partnership with our fellow board members.
Policy: To be clear about each decision: Is it a one-time decision or a decision that will carry on into future years? Will it become a policy which will govern the congregation over the long-term? Obvious examples include safety policy, personnel policy, rental policy, and the like. But other decisions may not be as obvious. We are committed to creating a digital policy and procedures book for easy access, not only by this board and future boards, but also accessible to our members. Relying on the collective institutional memories of previous board members is no longer a valid option.
Conversation with you as members and as lay leaders. In the spirit of transparency, we will offer multiple avenues for these conversations.
Chat with the Board: Monthly, you will have an opportunity to be in an informal, open virtual conversation with one or more Board members on the 4th Tuesdays of each month, beginning this month on the 23rd -- at 7:00 via Zoom. Check the church calendar for the link. Some months we might focus on one topic; some might be centered around one or more “potluck topics” where you will guide the conversation. This month we will brainstorm ideas for UUCBV's response to combat systemic racism in our congregation, community, state, and nation. So come join us in conversation on the 23rd.
Regular town hall meetings as the need arises
Blogs and “discussion forums” on our website
Others? What ideas do you have for increasing conversation and transparency?
As far as business decisions at our June 9th Board meeting,
We created a task force, coordinated by Maya Lazaraus, Jerry Wagnon and Rev. Donna, to create a “groundbreaking” event at our new property, hopefully in mid- to late August, depending on the signing of our construction contracts. They are recruiting other volunteers. Reach out to Maya Lazarus if you would like to help with this effort or have ideas. Email the church administrator (firstname.lastname@example.org) for Maya’s contact information if you don’t have access to our membership directory
We created a task force to plan a farewell event for Rev. Donna, celebrating her two years with us. If you have ideas for this event, email me at email@example.com.
We approved signatories for our bank and investment accounts.
We discussed our response to the murder of George Floyd and the resulting peaceful protests
Finally, we invite everyone who is interested in seeing your Board in action to our monthly meetings, which are held on the second Tuesday of each month from 6:30 to 8:30 via Zoom. The agenda is generally ready by the first Tuesday of the month. To request an item to be placed on the agenda or to request to speak at a Board meeting, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you want to observe, join us at any time; no RSVP is needed. Check the church calendar for details.
I hope you will join me at the “Chat with the Board” session on June 23 and subsequent fourth Tuesdays of each month from 7:00 to 8:00 PM (via Zoom).
Gaye Webb, President