Winter 2017 Susan Spencer Cramer, Board Secretary
If 2016 was the year where we dreamed big, 2017 will be the year when we put our dreams into action. The Board of Trustees kicked off 2017 with an energetic, idea-packed half-day retreat on January 28 that focused on how we as a board can move UCS’s mission forward while still maintaining the health and vitality of the congregation.
To that end we spent time discussing the board’s role and how we interact with the congregation, the Leadership Team and the various committees. Robin teed us up with a terrific article by Dan Hotchkiss that divides board governance into three key modes: “Fiduciary. In fiduciary mode, the board protects the congregation’s assets, conserves its traditions, and worries about risks…and makes sure the resources in its care —including especially its human and spiritual resources and—are conserved.
Strategic. This type pf governance looks to the future, and asks, ‘What do we mean to accomplish in the next few years, and what are the major choices we must make in order to get there?’ Generative. This differs from the other two in that it addresses questions that do not allow for simple, fast, or practical solutions. Generative conversations wander.”
Read the entire article here: http://danhotchkiss.com/how-to-spend-your-boards-time/
We discussed aligning our thinking with Hotchkiss’s model, with a focus on ongoing generative work (of the three, it’s the hardest to tackle but arguably the most important). We also discussed tactical ways, with the help of the Leadership Team, to streamline our agendas and meetings to allow more time for this bigger thinking, including quarterly “deep dive” meetings.
In the second part of the meeting, we broke into small groups to brainstorm ideas around maximizing our monetary potential—in other words, finding opportunities to bring more revenue into our doors once we have a new building. Ideas ranged from a summer camp for socially engaged youth, a drop-in play space or work area, or offices for social justice organizations. We aren’t waiting to take action on some of these ideas, however—the board will be actively pursuing opportunities on an ongoing basis. If you have any thoughts or big ideas, let us know!
Your board is: Heather Turnbull, President
Neal Eisenstein, Vice President
Chris Grazioso, Treasurer
Susan Spencer Cramer, Secretary
And a warm welcome to our newest member, Erica Malik! Questions or comments?
Look for one of us every Sunday at the door or at coffee hour.