From Our Board
Editor Albany UU | Jun 12, 2020
In early 2019, I received a call from Al DeSalvo. He was calling on behalf of the nominating committee, and I assumed he would ask me to run for another term on the Social Responsibilities Council. Needless to say, his ask surprised me: He wanted me to run for a position on the Board of Trustees. 
 
At first I wondered, “Why me?” I’d only been a member for a few years. Occasionally, people still approached Kelly and me to ask if we were visitors! But after giving it some thought, I accepted (Al can be very persuasive). Last May at our annual meeting, the congregation elected me to a three-year term.
 
Despite my initial nerves, I’m glad I said yes. I’ve learned so much about our congregation by reading, listening to conversations, and asking questions. It has also been fulfilling to work with others as we move our community forward. 
 
I can’t run through everything we’ve done in the past year, but I’m especially proud of our work to become a “visioning” board. This was no small feat given the difficulty involved in changing our governance structure. But we’ve made steady progress by working with our newly-formed Ministry and Operations Team. Soon, you will see a brand-new “vision statement” crafted and approved by the Board.
 
Our congregation has also faced its fair share of challenges during this time. The ongoing pandemic has been tough. We’ve lost our physical community, and we’ve had to make tough budgetary decisions due to revenue shortfalls. And as the police and citizens continue to take Black lives, we must wrestle with how we work to dismantle white supremacy – in ourselves, in our congregation, and in the world at large. 
 
For our incoming Board members, welcome aboard! I look forward to working with you. If you’re brand new, please don’t hesitate to reach out. I would love to talk about my experiences. If you’ve already done a stint on the Board, I’d also enjoy talking to you. There’s so much left for me to learn. 
 
And to the congregation, thanks for placing your faith in me to fill this important role. I’m excited to see what the rest of my term holds. 
 
-Zach Cunningham