Apr 02, 2024

Michigan Conference UCC Board of Directors

Rev. Liz Larrivee, M.B.A., M.Div. President

Our board-staff partnership provides structure for leading the ministry of the Michigan Conference UCC. The BOD’s function of governance and the staff’s function of management complement and support each other. On March 22 and 23, BOD and staff kicked-off a joint Strategic Planning Initiative by attending a retreat facilitated by Quanita Roberson of Nzuzu Consulting  https://www.nzuzu.com/consulting. Retreat goals included (1.) Building relationships and trust, (2.) Deep listening for the movement of the Holy Spirit, (3.) Discovering “Who We Are,” (4.) Discerning “What We Need to Do,” and (5.) Co-creating a draft mission statement for the Conference. We will continue to build on the foundation we began during the retreat as we engage the next steps in our strategic planning process.


In addition to crafting a Conference strategic plan that includes mission, vision, and values statements to guide our work together, a key BOD governance responsibility is to strengthen Conference ministry programs by ensuring adequate financial resources. After careful and detailed analysis–including dialogue with staff—the BOD made two significant financial decisions in alignment with our strategic plan. First, we have reduced our Conference OCWM pass-through giving to the UCC National Ministries from 30% to 10% to be on par with the contribution rates of other UCC Conferences. Second, we have listed the East Lansing Conference property (office, house, and land) for sale with Lisa Kost, Director Coldwell Banker Commercial. Staffing shifts to remote work locations, a frequently empty building, an aging facility with significant deferred maintenance, and increasing operational costs combined to make this a wise fiduciary decision. These board-staff partnership actions demonstrate our ongoing commitment to supporting the transformational ministry of equipping, empowering, encouraging, and connecting Michigan churches and clergy to serve God and neighbor.

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