Governance Task Force – Executive Summary

Introduction and Table of Contents
First Church Unitarian Governance Task Force
Phase II Report 10/16/16

Governance Task Force members(Phase II): Jim Nehring (Chair), Mark Bucceri, Niela Miller, Bonnie Petrovich, Phyllis Terrey, Ron Willett, Joyce Williams


This document constitutes the second and final report of the Governance Task Force of First Church Unitarian, Littleton.  The Task Force charge for this phase of its work was to investigate potential approaches to church governance, conduct workshops with the congregation to examine options, and make recommendations.  In carrying out this charge, the Task Force discovered there was an underlying uncertainty about the precise nature of our current approach to governance.  We, therefore, took on the additional task of mapping our current approach.  In what follows, we offer a description of our current approach to governance.  We then suggest three options for the future.  We conclude with recommendations.  Below is a table of contents with page numbers for each section.


Table of Contents

Part I:  Mapping our Current Approach to Governance                                                         p. 3

Part II: Three Options for the Future                                                                                      p. 12

Option 1:  Stick with the Current Approach and make adjustments              p. 13

Option 2:  Transition to a Policy Board Approach                                          p. 15

Option 3: Search for Additional Options or Invent Something Original        p. 18

Part III:  Recommendations                                                                                                    p. 19

The complete report is available here:

First Church Unitarian Governance Task Force Phase II Report Revised


Executive Summary
First Church Unitarian Governance Task Force
Phase I Report 3/5/16

Governance Task Force members: James Nehring (Chair), Niela Miller, Phyllis Terrey, Susan Tordella, Ron Willett, Joyce Williams

This report is the first of two reports by a governance task force commissioned by the First Church Standing Committee in October, 2015. This first report presents the views of First Church members and friends on a range of questions related to Church governance.
The Task Force put together a list of key church purposes and ten questions to elicit the perspectives of Church members on issues related to governance. It then conducted interviews and focus groups. Approximately half of all church members chose to participate.
Major themes
• Our church is an important center of community, social action, and spiritual life.
• Staff and volunteers work hard and, by and large, do very good work.
• Our current approach to governance needs to change. (Opinions as to how much change and what sort of change is needed vary widely.)
• There are too many committees and roles to fill and not enough members to fill them.
• Roles, responsibilities, and protocols are confusing.
• Leadership roles require too much time commitment.
Next Steps
The Governance Task Force will facilitate congregational discussion of this interim report and various approaches to governance through the early fall. A final report will summarize congregational perspectives. It will inform the congregation, ministerial search committee, church leaders, and the new minister in finding an excellent path forward with respect to church governance.

Full report is available here First Church Unitarian Governance Task Force Phase I Report .