I have known Jeanne since attending Meadville-Lombard together. She is one of the sharpest and most dedicated UU's, capable of bridging across all the student groups and standing as a leader at the same time. She has unbeatable energy and a great sense of humor. She will make an inspired UUA President.
Rev. Jody Whelden, BCC
UU Community Minister
Speaker, Author & Chaplain
Spirituality of Illness
Board Certified Chaplain
First, an extremely strong religious leader and minister; able and ready to be the lead minister for the UUA.
Second, an accomplished manager ready to work with and lead the large non-profit corporation that is the UUA.
Third, a strong team player, dedicated to working closely with the UUA Board of Trustees to strengthen the Association and, most important, the association's member congregations.
Jeanne and I served together on the UUA Board of Trustees for four years. Jeanne was often minister to the board, a challenge for any minister.
During much of her time on the board, Jeanne was the Chair of the Finance Committee; I was a member of that committee. Jeanne worked closely with the UUA headquarters and field staffs to carefully manage the myriad financial issues that impacted virtually every aspect of the association. She became intimately familiar with the inner workings of the association and worked to remedy some procedural financial issues. As President, she will use her knowledge for the major benefit of the entire Association.
As a board member, Jeanne was adept at helping the board refocus and move forward on difficult issues under consideration. Her commitment to working closely with the board is extremely important. That commitment will help both the board and Jeanne as president accomplish great things.
Jeanne is the candidate best qualified to lead our Association.
Former member, UUA Board of Trustees, 2009 - 2015
Volunteer Coordinator, GA 2009
Former president, All Souls UU Church, Colorado Springs
Member, Bellingham (WA) Unitarian Fellowship
Since meeting her in 2009, I have hoped that someday Jeanne Pupke would become president of UUA. Thus, I am thrilled to endorse her wholeheartedly. Rare is the minister who possesses the traits, competencies, and experience to head a large non-profit organization of independent congregations. Even rarer is one with a prophetic voice, a passion for social justice in all its forms, and a track record of growing a large congregation to be even larger (by 71% during her tenure). In fact, there is only one person who fits this mold: Jeanne Pupke.
As a deeply engaged lay leader in my own congregation and friend to many UU ministers through my spouse Rev. Archene Turner, I can truly say Jeanne is the one for our not normal times. She will truly lead our faith in building a commonwealth of strong congregations.
Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church
I strongly support Rev. Jeanne in her run for president of the UUA. The UUA is a large non-profit institution and of our three candidates only Rev. Jeanne has successfully led a variety of large organizations. This is not an area where we can take a chance that someone will grow into the job.
Rev. Jeanne’s leadership expertise is especially noteworthy in the congregations she has served. She has grown the congregations she has ministered from the beginning of her career with small congregations to now where she nurtured First Richmond to be among the fastest growing large congregations with 70% growth in membership in just over ten years. Rev. Jeanne has not accomplished these feats on her own. It is her unique ability to recognize and nurture the talents of those around her that has led to her many successes.
Under Rev. Jeanne’s careful guidance and hard work, First UU Richmond has become a paramount training congregation with four ministerial interns and several others benefiting from her mentoring. These mentees will spread the saving message of Unitarian Universalism. This is very personal for me not only because of my love for Unitarian Universalism but because several of Rev. Jeanne’s protégés are among my best and most productive UU friends.
In short, Rev. Jeanne nurtures organizations and people and the circle of success grows ever wider. We need Rev. Jeanne to be our next UUA President.
Member of the UU Congregation of the Lowcountry, Bluffton, SC
Vice Chair of Commission on Appraisal
Member of Religious Educators Credentialing Committee
Member of the Regional Leaders Group (formerly DPA)
Trustee of The Mountain Retreat and Learning Center
Jeanne is committed to social justice which makes her a perfect fit for UUs. Justice is my reason for being a UU, so I'm pleased to endorse her.
Volunteer with the Iowa UU Witness/Advocacy Network and UUs for Just Economic Community
It is my privilege to urge you, my fellow UUers, to vote for the Rev. Jeanne Pupke in the coming UUA Presidential election.
I’ve known and worked with Rev. Jeanne for eleven years, watching her reach out to our youth and adults in local, regional, and larger settings where her proven business and religious resources enable us to do our part in transforming this world so that peace, liberty, love, and justice shall be the real life for all our siblings in the human family.
Rev. David Hicks McPherson
First UU Church of Richmond. VA
After having studied Jeanne's background and qualifications, and having had personal conversations with her about what would be her approach and priorities for the UUA, I believe Jeanne is the right person with the precise combination of skills and personal qualities to serve as our Association President. She understands the role of an organization president and has the personal grounding to do the job. We need an individual with a strong administrative background who can also be a spiritual leader and an advocate for justice work.
Rev. Bill Zelazny
Former UUA District Executive
North Providence, RI
I am excited and proud to fully endorse the Rev. Jeanne Pupke as the next President of the Unitarian Universalist Association! We are living in a peculiar time as people of faith. The religious landscape is changing, every day brings new justice work, and uncertainty hangs over all our endeavors and hopes. I believe Jeanne Pupke has the skills, vision, and experience to guide the Unitarian Universalist Association into the future. Her vision of a more deeply connected, thriving, and responsible association of congregations speaks to many of the real needs we encounter daily in our parishes. How are we connected to the UUA? How can we cast a wider vision? How do we support our congregations and nurture new and transformative models of ministry? I believe Jeanne can help us address these questions and solidify our hopes into a concrete vision for our association. Her experience on the UUA Board of Trustees and the growth she’s fostered at First UU in Richmond as their Senior Minister are the skills we need to lead us into a prophetic and healthy future. Jeanne is the candidate we need for the Unitarian Universalism of today and the days yet to come!
Minister at Unitarian Universalist Church of Lexington, KY
Jeanne Pupke is visionary, generous, and savvy leader. She is the leader we need for the Unitarian Universalist Association. We need someone with business management experience and a proven track record. Jeanne's background in the coffee industry as well as the flourishing of the congregation she leads in Richmond VA testify to her financial leadership excellence. We need a visionary, compelling spokesperson for our faith. As a Ministerial Intern at First UU Richmond in 2013/14, I witnessed Jeanne's giftedness in making public statements. She inspires and challenges with clarity and power. Finally, Jeanne is a true minister. Her ministry arises out of her profound spiritual and theological groundedness. Jeanne will minister to all Unitarian Universalists. She will help us navigate the places where we are broken and lead us into deeper, wider covenant with one another and with our world. Jeanne has my vote. I hope you will join me with yours.
Minister of Faith Formation
Jeanne is a spiritually grounded and emotionally mature leader with the depth of experience and strength of character we need in our next President. She has what it takes to lead us in these challenging times when our witness is needed more than ever in our world.
- Rev. Jan K. Nielsen
- Unitarian Universalist Church of Little Rock, AR
Rev. Jason Cook
Reverend at Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Fullerton
Who is most likely to produce results?
It isn’t easy to decide your vote in this UUA presidential election.
There’s little real difference in analysis or platforms. Arguments I have heard based on platforms seem forced to me, rationales to justify a decision based unconsciously on other factors.
We are tempted make the decision based on simplistic reasons. Some will decide based on the generation of a candidate. Some will decide based on the eloquence of a candidate. Some will look at how personal history may shape behavior.
Those are tempting but insufficient reasons.
I urge you to vote for who is most likely to produce results. It isn’t age or eloquence that matter, it’s whether the candidate has the appropriate experience and skills to move our association forward, from the first day on the job to the last.
I’ve known and watched each of our presidents, their successes and failures. Most entered the job with confidence, after rousing us all to enthusiasm, but were intimidated and overwhelmed by what they found when they assumed the position. They were accustomed to the more modest and less complex environment of a congregation. The UUA’s complexity is very daunting. They were less successful than we hoped.
Jeanne Pupke is more likely to produce results than the other two fine candidates. Her experience demonstrates actual executive talent at a high level including supervisory experience of hundreds of individuals. Her experience includes leadership on the UUA board, so she will know from day one how to work with the board and keep everyone on the same page. Her board experience includes deep knowledge of the UUA’s budget, so she will spend minimal time understanding how to align resources with strategies. I’m not describing skills that a less experienced president can gain from appointing a chief operating officer. While a good executive delegates effectively, she still must be able to judge whether the delegated work is accurate, effective and accomplishes what she intends.
I’ve seen quite a few presidents enter the job with impressive ministry resumes only to falter in their new role because the presidency is so different from parish ministry. Because of her broader background, Jeanne Pupke will be a respected and effective leader right away.
Why is “right away” so important? Because even with highly effective leadership, change is slow in an organization like the UUA, and time is short.
We have the capacity to harness our collective vision and resources to deepen and grow our religious community if we choose strong experienced leadership like Jeanne Pupke offers us.
Lawrence R. Ladd
Former Financial Advisor of the UUA
Director, National Higher Education Practice
Grant Thornton LLP
What I appreciate about Jeanne is her unwavering commitment to being a supportive, caring colleague, and her living out her desire for a just and equitable world. At the time I met her, I didn't know she had already taken her genuine ministry and beliefs to our Board of Trustees. Yes, I want to see her in loving and experienced leadership of our movement.
Rev. Duncan E. Teague
Founding Minister of emerging
Abundant LUUv Ministries, Atlanta, Georgia
Jeanne Pupke is the strong leader our UUA needs for President of our Association. Having served for four years with her on the UUA Board of Trustees I witnessed her amazing leadership and organization as the chair of the Finance Committee. She has the business knowledge and acumen to serve us well, as well as the social justice passion and wisdom needed at this time to carry our UUA mission both in congregations in the wider UUA world.
Joan Lund, Member
Unitarian Universalist Church of Tampa
Former UUA Board Trustee
Jeanne has the unique background and experience combined with a solid rooting in a deep spirituality and dedication to social justice and anti-oppression, making her extraordinarily qualified to serve as UUA President. Her passionate commitment to Unitarian Universalism and its future are clear.
Rev. Chris Jimmerson
Minister for Program Development
First Unitarian Universalist Church of Austin
What I love about Jeanne is that she just gets it…everything from understanding the place and power of white allyship to using systems change theory in church administration. She understands both the vision of our faith that leads us towards change and the deeply entrenched ways in which things get done.
Having served on the UUA Board of Trustees she understands both the “means” and “ends” of our policy governance structure. Her leadership of a large congregation saw it transform itself into a racial justice juggernaut; she can harness the power of Unitarian Universalism and help collaboratively craft a vision for the future.
As a colleague, I have seen her work collaborative with staff as they challenge each other to grow in their collective and individual ministries. In particular, I’ve admired her commitment to working with religious educators as colleagues in ministry.
As a woman of color, Jeanne has earned my trust and is an ally that can be relied upon to follow the lead of those from marginalized communities while giving wise counsel when asked.
In short, Jeanne just gets it.
UUA Board of Trustees
Both practical and deeply faithful, Jeanne has the skills and integrity to do this special kind of ministry
I am enthusiastic about Jeanne Pupke's leadership coming to the UUA as President. Both practical and deeply faithful, she has the skills and the integrity to do his special kind of ministry. Hers is a ministry of caring and empowerment, coupled with experience not only on the UUA Board but in the spiritual practices of inclusion. She has my whole-hearted endorsement.
Unitarian Universalist Church of Fort Myers
Fort Myers, Florida
Member of Unitarian Church of Norfolk
I have had the pleasure of knowing Jeanne Pupke for nearly twenty years, since we were both lay leaders at First Unitarian Church in Portland, Oregon. Jeanne possesses a deep and grounded spirituality as well as a passionate commitment to justice. For years, she has labored on behalf of an anti-racist and multicultural Unitarian Universalism. To these commitments she brings organizational savvy and proven leadership success in congregations, the business world, and the UUA. Jeanne has the vision and skills to lead Unitarian Universalism into a future full of both challenge and promise.
The Rev. Dr. Robert M. Hardies
All Souls Church, Unitarian
With great enthusiasm for her strength, vision and leadership, I whole-heartedly endorse Jeanne Pupke for the UUA Presidency.
Jeanne gets what makes UU congregations vibrant centers of transformation and vitality – and gets the role the UUA can play in unleashing our greatest vibrancy across our entire movement and into the world. She sees clearly and insightfully the obstacles we face – those that have been there a long time, and the ones particular to this moment. She brings the executive-level experience within and beyond the UUA to see how to address these obstacles, as well as the necessary relationships it will take to make this change and growth actually happen.
Jeanne’s long-held vision for who we can be drives her authentic call to lead us in fulfilling our promise. Even more than her vision, however, is her capacity to listen for others’ visions, to learn and discover what is possible in our coming together, and to facilitate a courageous creativity and collaboration in all we do together.
Our Association and our Unitarian Universalist movement would be lucky to have Jeanne as our President. I plan to do all I can to get her elected – I hope you’ll join me.
Rev. Gretchen Haley
Foothills Unitarian Church
Fort Collins, CO
To me, the choice is clear. Jeanne Pupke is the only candidate for UUA President who decisively aces all three tests to be the leader of our movement
As a Unitarian Universalist minister serving on active duty military as a chaplain, I have a particular lens through which I view the UUA President. The leader of our movement must pass the following:
1. The Chief of Chaplains’ Test: The UUA President must have familiarity with—if not adaptability to—the military institution, its customs and courtesies, and represent our faith at the highest echelons of our respective branches of service.
2. The Congressional Testimony Test: Should the occasion arise, the UUA President must have the courage and grit to enter into the legislative battle field, the steadiness of a commander officer to maintain their cool under fire, and the ability to persuasively present and advocate their position.
3. The Media Test: The UUA President must be professional, articulate, and accessible in the wider world, so should those whom we serve (in addition to others) see our leader say, “I heard what the ‘CO of your faith’ had to say and I am impressed. If that’s what UUism is about, then I want to know more about it!"
To me, the choice is clear. Jeanne Pupke is the only candidate for UUA President who decisively aces all three tests.
I have known Jeanne since 2004 and can attest she unequivocally has the experience (personally and professionally, individually and institutionally), temperament, centeredness, drive, and vision to represent Unitarian Universalism not only in our military world, but also lead it in our wider world.
Rev. Cynthia Kane
Commander (select), Chaplain Corps, United States Navy
In 2006, I started serving as District Executive of the then-named Thomas Jefferson District. That same year, Jeanne Pupke was called as senior minister of First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond. At that time, First UU was a large midsize congregation struggling to find its identity and its purpose. I watched Jeanne grow the congregation from 410 members to 703 members, an astounding 71% increase in less than 11 years.
First UU’s growth was the result of a key characteristic that plays itself out over and over again in Jeanne’s ministry. The characteristic is her ability to nurture talent.
Jeanne has a lot of skills and experience but it is her innate ability to nurture -- to identify what it is people and organizations have to offer, and through her caring, clarity, and commitment, help them to see it, too, that impresses me the most. With Jeanne’s guidance, they find strengths that they didn't know they had and a way to live into and share those strengths for the benefit of all.
I've watched this gift play itself out with new members of the congregation, with student ministers and interns, even the church business manager who is now serving as assistant minister, a talented African-American minister who now has dual fellowship in his Baptist faith and Unitarian Universalism.
Jeanne has a gift for seeing deep inside and helping others believe in themselves in a way that few others can.
I’ve watched Jeanne nurture a struggling congregation into a thriving large church that has come to claim radical hospitality and generosity of spirit in all it does. And I’ve watched Jeanne share her gift of nurture with others outside her congregation.
I endorse Jeanne Pupke for UUA President because I know that, under Jeanne’s leadership, the UUA will find its purpose, will clarify its identity, and will truly understand, maybe for the first time, that what we have to offer this hurting world demands that we work together, that we support each other, and that we become stronger together.
I am convinced that Jeanne Pupke is the right person, at the right time, to lead the UUA. I’m equally convinced that no one is as qualified, as experienced, and most importantly, as gifted as Jeanne to do what we need a President to do.
I hope you’ll join me in electing a leader who will nurture the UUA into being the very best we can be - TOGETHER.
Former UUA Southeast District Executive
Owner, Marquis Enterprises, LLC
Jeanne walks the talk of leadership and will offer a strong, wise, courageous, and faithful presence and perspective during these challenging times.
First Unitarian Church of Orlando
Jeanne Pupke is the courageous, wise, experienced leader we need in these tumultuous times. She has headed up large organizations, is an experienced fundraiser, and has a keen theological mind.
She is a person of deep faith, and will bring us into the 21st century with new energy, vitality, and strength.
Rev. Cecilia Kingman
Edmonds UU Congregation
I am excited about Jeanne’s campaign because she is well prepared to lead in an America that needs Unitarian Universalism’s prophetic religious voice. A well-run UUA will support the work of justice and healing in congregations and beyond.
Jeanne’s experience on the UUA Board of Trustees and as senior minister of a large church gives her both the practical and the ministerial skills to lead us well. Likewise, her experience in business will help the UUA be the denominational headquarters our faith needs.
Jeanne’s ability to raise money makes her the ideal candidate to lead us for the next six years. She has my vote!
Rev. Howard Dana
First Parish in Concord, MA
As a former business woman, Jeanne has the organizational and administrative abilities of a leader. She has been the supervising minister for 14 interns; I respect her commitment to ministerial formation.
Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley
I was leaning toward endorsing Jeanne but it was her answer to one specific question that sealed my commitment, specifically, how she sees Unitarian Universalism adapting to confront and thrive in the reality that was obviously different from the one in which she declared her candidacy. Jeanne’s response was grounded in relationship, in the importance of moving beyond the current focus on extended regionality, and restoring the sense of human connection. She spoke about the need for the UUA’s focus to return to its tap root, and to build and support the energy and enthusiasm of its congregations.
In addition, Jeanne has what is for me vital in our UU president – extensive and successful experience in running large organizations.
Without in any way intending to demean the other two candidates, my vote is going to the woman who will hit the ground running, and who has the vision to rebuild UU as a relational institution.
Based in strong relationships, successful outreach and structural change beyond our walls, we will thrive.
I support Jeanne Pupke for UUA President.
Rev. Maureen Killoran
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Gainesville, FL
Jeanne is able to understand that smaller and less affluent congregations have contributions to make
I liked Jeanne when I heard her at GA2016. Then through long personal conversation about the issues of small congregations and religious identity, my conviction grew that Jeanne is right for the UUA.
She’s able to understand that smaller and less affluent congregations and larger and more affluent places all have contributions to make to their communities and the Association—but they can’t be lumped together in helping them fulfill their missions and potential.
This minister from a little and poorer place, appreciates her vision and concern for us.
She has my vote!
Rev. Dr. Claudia A. Ramisch
Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Owensboro, KY
Jeanne Pupke is the most qualified leader to inspire cohesion in our denomination at this time of social political upheaval
Jeanne Pupke is the most qualified leader to inspire cohesion in our denomination at this time of social political upheaval. She has the executive experience to strengthen our institutional structures, the strong relational and technological skills, as well as history with youth, to bridge our generational gap and the commitment to moral justice at every level to expand and deepen our public witness.
She has my complete confidence and eternal gratitude for stepping up to serve at this crucial time in our history.
Rev. Dr. Elaine Peresluha
President of The Accredited Interim Minister's Guild
East Shore Unitarian Church
After four years as a Unitarian Universalist, it was time for me to discern how I could fully contribute to my newly-chosen faith. As my leadership journey began, I had the great blessing to serve my congregation alongside our newly called minister, Rev. Jeanne Pupke.
I have learned that Jeanne has an incredibly keen eye for examining systems and matching people and their skills to the needs in those systems. As a leader, her ability to identify opportunities and develop solutions is remarkable, whether it’s in a congregation, RE program, cluster, region or affinity group.
Her business experience provides her with a strong sense of what’s possible, but it’s her faith and spirituality that ultimately help our hopes and dreams materialize into reality.
Her vision for our faith of a “commonwealth of congregations” with vital lay leaders and a sense of abundance is what our Association and our world need.
Now, after twelve years of collegiality with Jeanne, I can say, without hesitation, that she is a leader for our time and for the future of our Unitarian Universalist faith.
UUA Board of Trustees
I am definitely “Up with Pup.”
Jeanne Pupke has the track record, the skills and the knowledge to lead us as president of the UUA .
.Jeanne is grounded in a covenantal theology.
When I first moved to the Southern Region, it was Jeanne, who was then serving on the UUA Board of Trustees, who reached out to me
She wanted to let me know she was available if I had any questions, or ideas; she wanted to hear my thoughts, hear my vision, and form OUR UUA
Jeanne is also a get it done kind of person, when she makes a promise, she delivers. I have known her to be consistent, to be responsive and to keep her promises.
And last, Jeanne is a visionary, she leads one of our pioneering congregations, the large congregation of First UU Church in Richmond.
So that’s why I am Up with Pup: she delivers, she’s visionary and she is grounded in the covenantal philosophy we need so desperately to focus on now.
I hope you will be “Up with Pup” too.
Rev. Robin Tanner
Minister of Worship and Outreach
The Unitarian Church in Summit
Summit, New Jersey
Jeanne will bring skillfulness to presidency, in ways that can help us reach out across lines of race, class, ethnicity and faith
I am delighted that our UUA has three fantastic candidates for its presidency ready to take on leadership. And today I am endorsing the candidacy of Jeanne Pupke.
Jeanne is a colleague that I have been impressed by time and time again for her savvy leadership, for her wise spiritual counsel and for her skillful way of navigating the many challenges of spiritual leadership at this time in history.
I first met Jeanne when our congregations were paired together through the UUA’s Leap of Faith program. I was impressed most watching Jeanne among her people in her congregation. The fact that here was a strong, committed leader whose strength never shadowed the people around her, but rather magnified their skills and gifts that let them come forward and flourish in ways that seemed to surprise even them. The congregation had a strong buzz about it – a buzz of ability to meet any challenge, that came not from egotism or arrogance but from strong commitment and the lived relationship that they shared with other that let them know that they had each other’s’ backs, always.
That is the strength of Jeanne’s leadership to bring forward the strengths of others, and to harness them in ways that no one can do on their own.
Youth and young adults connected with Jeanne just as joyfully and eagerly as did the elders in the congregation, and the congregation as a whole knew that they had a responsibility to the congregations around it, even if they were as far away as Massachusetts.
They lived the commitment that is our covenant to one another. That is our UU Association of congregations.
Jeanne has a rare and precious combination of skills for leadership that will allow her to be a tireless advocate for justice and reach out and remain a kind, respectful, empathetic connection with those who disagree.
She knows how to keep tethered to her own strong commitments while reaching out at the same time.
There has rarely been a moment in our history that is more important for skills like this, and I know Jeanne will bring that skillfulness to our UUA presidency, in ways that can help us as a faith tradition to reach out across lines of race, class, ethnicity and faith in order to build coalition with those who want to create the kind of peaceful, just world that we all dream of.
Jeanne brings a depth of understanding of our UUA and all of its complexity with her years on our UUA board, and she brings deep experience with complex large organizations as well as her spiritual well, her spiritual depth that will infuse and sustain all that she does in the name of that which is holiest to us all.
I am delighted to support Jeanne Pupke as our next UUA president.
Rev. Parisa Parsa
Public Conversations Project
I am so excited that in June 2017, we will elect a woman president of the UUA.
Today want to talk to you about why I put my whole heart into endorsing Jeanne Pupke for president.
I have known Jeanne in four capacities: as her congregant, employee, intern minister/student minister who she guided through ministry, and now my beloved colleague.
I believe it is time to elect a president of UUA who has a bridge between ministerial depth and business understanding. Jeanne is without question that candidate.
Jeanne is also a leader of leaders. She invites people to be more than they are.
Jeanne is a woman who casts vision and allows those around to make that vision come to life.
I look forward to dialoging with you, answering your questions, and I look forward to saying congratulations to my beloved colleague Jeanne Pupke next June as she becomes –rightly so - our next UUA president.
Rev. Patricia Owen
Unitarian Universalist Church of Tampa, FL
Rev. Jeanne's experience, heart, commitment, and leadership skills will lead to transformative results in the UUA
I served as the Chair of the Ministerial Search Committee that brought Jeanne to the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond almost 11 years ago. During her time with us, she has transformed our congregation in ways that many of us would not have thought possible. Under her leadership, our congregation has:
- had a 71% increase in membership
- doubled the budget
- trained numerous ministerial students and interns who are now serving their own congregations
- completed a capital campaign that raised over $1.8 million dollars
- consistently provided support and resources to other UU congregations
- dramatically increased the diversity within our congregation
- become a bulwark for social justice in the Richmond community
Rev. Pupke’s vision, inspiration, and leadership have been the moving force behind these changes. I know that her experience, heart, commitment, and leadership skills will lead to equally transformative results in the UUA.
Former Chair of the Ministerial Search Committee
First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond
In 2017, the UUA is blessed with 3 excellent candidates, any of whom would do a great job if elected.
I wanted to tell you why my vote will go to Jeanne Pupke. I’ve known Jeanne for several years now as a ministerial colleague in the Southern region and working shoulder to shoulder on the UUA board. I see Jeanne as someone who brings expertise, vision, and wisdom to the role.
The UUA is a large non-profit with about a $20 million budget, dozens and dozens of employees, and relationships with other peer institutions that sprawl out in every direction, and of course, all the congregations. It needs somebody at the center who is used to working and familiar with working at that level of organization and that level of complexity.
Jeanne not only brings management expertise, she has a corporate background, experience with large congregations, and has worked with the UUA board as chairman of the finance committee.
She brings that kind of expertise necessary for the scope and complexity of a system as large as the UUA.
As conversations would be going around the board table sometimes it could get stuck in the technical mode, in the answer mode, or solution mode. And it was Jeanne, who after a long pause could bring us home, back to the question of why, questions of impact and outcome. What communities would be reached, how would this bring transformation and move our mission closer to the beloved community? So she brings not only expertise, but she also brings vision.
And last of all she brings wisdom.
I remember one Saturday morning I was set to give a presentation in the afternoon. In the morning, word came that someone in my community had died, and this wasn’t a member of the church but someone with a relationship with the congregation. I was torn, I wasn’t sure which of my roles to honor. To stay with the board or to go home.
She said, of course you’ll go home. She had the moral clarity that comes from years of spiritual practice, and of serving as an effective pastor.
I will remember the clarity and compassion she had in my moment of decision.
That kind of clarity and depth is necessary for a leader.
As Jeanne brings all of these gifts to the UUA presidency, I am excited to vote for her in 2017, and I hope you will consider doing the same.
Rev. Jake Morrill
Oak Ridge Unitarian Universalist Church
Oak Ridge, TN
What I like about Jeanne is that she has experience. Jeanne has been on the UUA board as chair of the finance committee. And if it is anything that the UUA needs, it is more people with finance experience.
It is because of her compassion, intelligence, her experience, and empathy that I want her to be the next president of the UUA.
Rev. Dr. Len De Roche
W. Hartford, CT
I am here to lend my support to Jeanne Pupke for our next UUA president.
I first met Jeanne back in 2001 when I became accepted as a modified residential student at Meadville Lombard. She was one of the students a little ahead of me giving me advice. I felt so grateful.
Then I got there and I realized it was not just a personal thing with me, she was a true leader. Whenever we needed something done, we would call on Jeanne to help up. She has the expertise, the leadership ability, and was the person who knew how to do an agenda and how to move it through.
She was also the person who could listen and understand what we wanted to accomplish
I was so delighted that she left Oregon and came to Richmond, Virginia, because being in Georgia she was then in my chapter. By then I was chapter leader, and once again, Jeanne was there for me to call on when we needed advice.
The main thing she brings to us is her passion; she is so passionate about our faith and about social justice.
Jeanne is a great negotiator, but she doesn’t make compromises when it comes to our UU principles and values. Jeanne moves us forward in ways I am proud to call her a friend, proud to be her colleague, and I hope I to call her our next president of the UUA.
Rev. Jane Page
UU Fellowship Statesboro and
UUs of Coastal Georgia
I have known the Rev. Jeanne Pupke for more than 15 years, and I highly endorse her to be president of the UUA. What makes Jeanne stand out from other candidates? It is actually the combination of 2 things:
Jeanne has a very strong business sense and I think she would make an excellent CEO of our institution.
And she has brought innovative ministry to Richmond. And I think we need that to survive in the next part of our journey.
So please join me in electing the Rev. Jeanne Pupke as president of the UUA.
Rev. Archene Turner
Affiliated Community Minister
Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church
I endorse Rev. Jeanne Pupke because of the ways she has reached out to our congregation since coming to Richmond as well as for the tremendous work I have seen her do at First UU. She provided us with valuable support and encouragement during our most recent ministerial search and warmly welcomed our new minister. Our two churches now collaborate in areas such as racial justice programs and a labyrinth ministry after many years of very little interaction.
Although I don’t attend First UU, I’ve admired the renewed energy she has brought to that congregation. Recently, their sanctuary was filled on a Sunday night with over 200 people, many of whom were millennials, for a meeting of the local chapter of Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ).
By welcoming that organization to use their space on a continuing basis, they’ve made an impression on a hard-to-reach age group. “This church has such a great vibe,” I heard one of the millennials say. What UU church wouldn’t covet that comment! I’d love to see what Rev. Pupke could do for UUs on a national level.
Unitarian Universalist Community Church
Glen Allen, VA
I’m endorsing Jeanne because, while I respect all three candidates, Jeanne is the one who is best able to speak for our whole organization.
She understands the big churches, but she also understands the daily issues of the mid-size and small congregations, where the challenges range from how do we rise up for social justice to how do we rise up and pay for the new bathroom sink.
She is practical, she is prophetic, and she can steer a course that moves bravely forward between extremes.
Jeanne is my choice because she understands that we all need a voice, whether we live in Boston, California, or Hartland, Wisconsin.
Rev. Amy Petrie Shaw
Lake Country Unitarian Universalist Church
Jeanne Pupke is a religious leader with the combination of skills needed to lead the UUA; public spokesperson, proven administrative abilities, and pastoral presence.
Rev. James A. Hobart
Former Member of UUA Board of Trustees
I think we have three excellent candidates for President and I am really proud to support Jeanne Pupke. And I’d like to tell you why.
I’ve known Jeanne since her very first day at Meadville Lombard more than 15 years ago. We had a class together. Jeanne and I started talking about all kinds of things, theology, congregational life, church size, growth, vision of the future.
And we’ve been talking ever since – not every day but regularly ever since. Jeanne is someone who is full of ideas but she is also someone who really listens.
She’s curious, she listens and often Jeanne will call when she is driving somewhere. You find out she has been on a business trip and she is taking a side trip – and why is she doing that? She is following up on some interesting thing someone told her about that she wanted to see for herself since she was in the neighborhood.
What I love about Jeanne is that she is able to keep track of all those details, track them down and then put them together in the most interesting ways into a big picture that she next takes into the next conversation, the next opportunity.
That is part of what makes Jeanne a great leader, she sees the big picture, she’s good at details, and more than anything she is a great listener, she has her own ideas but she really listens to others.
One of the things I love to talk to Jeanne about is her journey into multicultural ministry. She serves the congregation in Richmond; she is so aware that it is the former capital of Confederacy, and what does that mean? To UUs to non UUs?What does it mean to be a UU in that place? What is the history? What are the opportunities? Who are our neighbors?
Jeanne has always lived into those conversations with an open heart and a great urge take responsibility and to find those opportunities.
I’ve been proud to follow her in that journey, she and her work have been inspirational to me and my work in that area.
Rev. Deborah Cayer
Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
I have delighted in the movement of Jeanne Pupke’s ministry from strength to strength ever since she was a student at Meadville Lombard Theological School. Jeanne enjoys a unique combination of experiences and qualities that give her the heart of a minister, the mind of a CEO, the spiritual stamina of a denominational leader and a vision worthy of our Unitarian Universalist faith. There is no better candidate to lead our movement into a robust, impactful, religious presence in a world pleading for our Unitarian Universalist values.
Rev. Lyssa Jenkens, Ph.D.
Faithful Change Community Ministries
I met Jeanne when she came to serve the Richmond congregation. I was immediately impressed by her passion for our justice-seeking, soul-affirming faith and her ability to articulate that faith to a broad range of people. I've experienced first-hand her compassion, wisdom and deep regard for human rights, as well as her ability to work well with others. Jeanne has genuine humility paired with personal courage, and a well-developed work ethic. AND she has a wonderful sense of humor. I support her candidacy for President of the UUA wholeheartedly!
Rev. Beverly Boke
First Parish Unitarian Universalist
Jeanne Pupke is the right candidate at the right time for our movement.
Rev. Neal Jones
Main Line Unitarian Church
I know Jeanne to have a head for leadership and development with a ministerial heart for You, our Faith and its Growth
I am supporting the Rev. Jeanne Pupke for UUA President. I know Jeanne to have a head for leadership and development with a ministerial heart for You, our Faith and its Growth. She is devoted, steadfast and faithful to ensuring that our faith and all of our congregations are relevant and realized in the lives of our members and friends and ready for seekers wanting a faith community in their lives. Join me in supporting Jeanne for UUA President.
Rev. Kathleen Owens
First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Diego
I wholeheartedly support Rev. Jeanne's candidacy for UUA President. She has done a fabulous job as senior minister of our church and will bring a wealth of passion, skill and leadership to our national organization.
Member of First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond
The love-filled energy she devotes to bringing people together and to making them feel like they belong is undying.
I've known Jeanne for well over a decade, and she has been a phenomenal mentor and colleague to me during that whole time – from the earliest years of my ministerial formation, through my Preliminary and Final Fellowship years and my ordination, and into full fledged ministry. She also provided a great deal of guidance to me, and our church, during a stretch of years in which there was high turnover in the Settled Minister position. She has continued to build and support the bridge between our church and hers – two UU churches within 35 miles of each other – and the relationship between the two congregations is stronger than it’s ever been. Jeanne’s passion for and commitment to Unitarian Universalism is astounding. The love-filled energy she devotes to bringing people together and to making them feel like they belong is undying. She has an abundance of talents and skills, and her integrity and authenticity are rare, if not unmatched. It is a pleasure and honor to call Jeanne a colleague and friend; and to endorse her for UUA President.
Rev. Dr. Cathie Stivers
Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Glen Allen, VA
Jeanne is a leader, with strong business acumen from her experience running a company and she is committed to spreading UU principles in the community. I think she would make a great president of the UUA!
Member of First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond
Without a doubt, Rev. Jeanne has the vision, experience and leadership skills to lead the UUA. However, it's because of her compassion for the marginalized members of our society and her unyielding efforts to make Unitarian Universalism a welcoming and inclusive faith to all who seek our religious community that I wholeheartedly support her candidacy for the Presidency.
The Rev. Sherman Logan
First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond VA
When Rev. Jeanne Pupke stands up, others join her because they trust her and are guided by her insights, compassion and mettle. She understands the Human Condition and feels what others feel because she has her fingers on their pulse. Their heartbeats affect her heartbeat and create within her the commitment and determination to make certain her reaching out and touching are legitimate acts of ultimate respect and confirmation of dignity. Her life has been a daily trek of creating spaces and environments wherein people discover themselves and become empowered to stand up and be visible and vocal.
Jeanne has the background and experience to be comfortable in small intimate environments and in large gatherings. She knows the value and purpose of covenant groups and how to position them within congregations. Equally and more pervasively, she holds the knowledge, skills and abilities essential to be an effective leader of large groups...be they a local congregational or a national organization.
I believe Jeanne Pupke is the leader most needed today by UUA. She has the vision, strength, stamina, determination, and commitment to become the President of UUA. I ask you to join me in endorsing and supporting her and in celebrating her standing up for UUA in the most personal and professional way possible...the giving of herself for the mission of UUA.
Co-Chairperson of the Unitarian Universalists Legislative Ministry of Virginia
I am one of many ministers who has been long impressed with Jeanne as a religious leader. I first encountered her when she was a lay leader in my church, First Unitarian Church of Portland, Oregon, where she proved to be a bright, compassion, visionary and fair leader. After she went off to seminary and became an ordained minister, I then watched her prophetic ministry emerge with clarity and purpose as she helped shape the South's religious narrative around the right to marry. Since that time, I have witnessed her again and again time sharing her time, thought and leadership generously within our Association.
I believe that Jeanne Pupke is the best candidate to take us through these next difficult years with a promising vision and enough people compassion and executive skills to carry it out. It is without hesitation that I formally endorse Jeanne Pupke.
Rev. Kate Lore
Social Justice Minister
First Unitarian Church of Portland, Oregon
In a time that calls for compassionate, inclusive, intelligent leadership, I believe Reverend Jeanne Pupke has the right experiences and qualifications to serve as President of the UUA. I worked closely with her during my years as a board member and president at First UU Church of Richmond, and admired her many abilities in the most complex job of parish minister. I knew then that we were privileged to have such a person in our midst, and I feel she would do extremely well leading the UUA.
Diana Thompson Vincelli
Member and Former President
First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond
As a member of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Beaufort, SC, I would like to endorse the Rev. Jeanne Pupke for President of our Unitarian Universalist Association. As Minister of the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond, VA, she befriended our young church in its beginning and helped us through our struggles in a number of ways. She was our guest speaker on several occasions and mentored our settled minister in her early days as a UU Minister. When our minister left, and we lost a 15-year old member and a founding member within the same time period, Rev. Pupke sent us one of her interns for a week to help us get back on our feet. She not only has great compassion for the individual, but can sense the needs of the larger whole and come to their aide at just the right time. She was one of the first to go to the aide of the Blacksburg church after Va. Tech’s tragic shootings and the sudden death of the minister in Norfolk, Va. She is an excellent speaker and an experienced business manager. I think she has all the qualities we need at this time to lead us forward in our hopes of helping the world become a more loving place for all.
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Beaufort, SC
I can't think of anyone that is more passionate and versed in Unitarian Universalism than Jeanne Pupke. She is a trusted friend.
Rogue Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
The Reverend Jean Pupke is a bundle of contradictions. They come together perfectly to make her an ideal president for our Unitarian Universalist Association in these dangerous times. She is a social justice activist with a well-grounded spirituality. Her background ranges from once trying her vocation as a nun, to holding a Golden Gloves Boxing judge’s license, to extensive executive experience in business, serving a term on the UUA board, as well as ministering to a large Unitarian Universalist congregation. These experiences and abilities uniquely qualify her to serve as our next UUA president. I enthusiastically endorse her candidacy.
Rev. James Ishmael Ford
First Unitarian Church of Providence
I’m endorsing Jeanne for president, because of our three candidates, only she has the experience of governance at the UUA level. Jeanne has been on the UUA Board of Trustees and has brought health and productive relationships to that body, as well as experiencing first hand how the pieces of our governance fit together. Jeanne cares about the health of our association.
I’m endorsing her for president because of the effective work she has done at First Unitarian, Richmond, skillfully balancing institutional, denominational, and community leadership and building a church which is a home for liberal spirituality and a beacon of justice and love it its city.
I’m endorsing Jeanne for president of the UUA because she is a creative thinker, a careful listener, a tireless worker, and a skillful leader.
Rev. Christine Robinson
First Unitarian Church of Albuquerque
Jeanne Pupke is a leader of leaders. She can be our answer to Pope Francis’ statement, “Who am I not to judge?” by affirming, “Who are we not to celebrate the beauty and variety of the human family and all of creation?” She is a former Catholic sister who has found in our faith her liberating ministry.
She will insist that we move beyond the consumer mentality "What can my faith do for me?” to “What can our faith do for the good of the world.” She is the eldest of 7 children so a life of great responsibility comes naturally to her. She is an experienced businessperson who understands that the material must serve the spiritual. She has the skills to lead our association in times of boom or bust with a solid set of values for making tough calls and acting on great opportunities.
She will speak truth to power, so be forewarned because we are the power to whom she will be speaking. She knows that we can never change the world without a good clear assessment of ourselves and our potential. She will challenge us and cherish us. My experience of Jeanne’s ministry and leadership has been under the most daunting of circumstances and so I know firsthand that she can bring clarity to chaos, calm to crisis, compassion to heartbreaking catastrophe. She has a heart of gold. She has given us her all. She has more to give. For these reasons, I endorse Jeanne Pupke for President of the Unitarian Universalist Association.
Rev. Chris Buice
Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church
Jeanne is a strong, competent leader with a compassionate presence as well as an outstanding sense of humor. She understands Unitarian Universalism and its people, including the insides, outsides, upsides and downsides. She has excellent experience serving at both congregational and wider levels. She is spiritually deep with great executive skills. Every time we engage with Jeanne on matters large or small we feel we are with someone who really gets it. She cares deeply for our faith and we believe she is the leader needed for such a time as this.
The Rev. Dr. Barbara Wells ten Hove & the Rev. Jaco B. ten Hove
Co-ministers, Cedars UU Church, Bainbridge Island, WA
Jeanne is one of the boldest leaders I have ever met. Courageous, conscientious, and dedicated, she has, as long as I have known her, served in my mind as the quintessential model of a 'visionary'. In my time with her on the UUA Board, she constantly demanded that we discover our higher selves, and then become them, painstakingly reminding us of our promises and our potential. There are few I would recommend, and none I would prefer, for this position. We need Jeanne's passion and thoughtfulness.
Caleb Raible Clark
2010-2011 Youth Observer to the UUA Board of Trustees
I am endorsing the Rev. Jeanne Pupke, of Richmond, Virginia for UUA President. I have known Rev. Pupke since 2009, when she joined me on the UUA Board of Trustees. We served together on the UUA Finance Committee where Jeanne’s business sense was quickly apparent. Her clarity of purpose and focus impressed me, and I often saw her help the Board to find a clear path forward. Jeanne was willing and able to speak her truth to us, and she helped the Board pause and refocus, as we worked our way through some complex decisions. The Board was in the midst of significant governance changes during our shared tenure, such as downsizing the Board, and moving toward regional structures in the field, and I appreciated her experience, vision and courage.
I have only high regard for all three of our candidates for UUA President, however, because of my personal experience with Jeanne, and her executive level experience in large business organizations, complemented by her deep religious experience, I believe that Rev. Jeanne Pupke is the most qualified candidate to lead our movement today.
Member, and former President, of All Souls UU Church, Kansas City, Missouri, 1968 to present
UUA Trustee for the Prairie Star District (now part of the Midwest Region) 2003-2011
Prairie Star District Board member 1998-2011
Lay member of the staff of UU Midwest Leadership School, Beloit, WI, 1999-2001
Gleaning from Jeanne Pupke’s wisdom and insight is a gift. I experienced it first hand when at the end of my 15 years of ministry, with my bags packed to move across the country, a 14 year boy in my congregation suddenly died, pushing the congregations need for pastoral care over the edge. Jeanne reached out to me saying ‘After you leave town, let me send one of my interns to your congregation to give pastoral care support. Your congregation's loss of you and the young boy needs a ministerial presence in their midst.”
Jeanne’s like that. She has the ability to assess situations objectively and offer strategies to help. I’ve known Jeanne as a colleague for about 10 years and I’ve witnessed her ability to name what is, which then allows for movement forward.
As President of the UUA, I believe her skill in assessment, vision, and collaboration will benefit our association in ways we can only dream about today. Jeanne has a drive and passion for our faith and a love for the people with strengths in leadership. Her experience, education and knowledge of congregations and beyond will inform and support her ability to lead the UUA into the spiritual revolution our globe is facing. I have complete trust in Jeanne’s commitment and covenant to our faith and I believe she brings vast experience to the table, coupled with a sense of honor the position of President carries.
Rev. Nan L. White
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Beaufort
Beaufort, South Carolina
Rogue Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship