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Davidoff Fund for Lay Leadership Names Students

Thanks to the Davidoff Fund for Lay Leadership, Meadville Lombard has awarded four exemplary students with $500 to attend 2013 General Assembly in Louisville, KY.

The four students are:

  • Rachel Christensen will enter the final year of her program, the Leadership Studies Seminar, this fall.  She is currently interning at the Unitarian Universalist Clearwater Church in Florida and serves alongside Meadville Lombard alum, Rev. Abhi Janamanchi.
  • James Galasinski is interning with Rev. Julie Forest at the Unitarian Church North in Mequan, WI. This fall, James will begin his final year of seminary, the Leadership Studies Seminar.
  • Doug McCusker interns with alum Rev. Nancy McDonald Ladd at River road Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Bethesda, MD. Doug will enter the final year of the program this fall, Leadership Studies Seminar.
  • Nell Newton kicks off the academic year with Congregational Studies Seminar, where she will intern with Rev. Brian Ferguson at the San Marcos Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Texas.

Eight seminarians studying for parish ministry, four from Meadville Lombard and four from Starr King, are receiving a $500 scholarship to attend General Assembly (GA) in Louisville this year. The gift will be funded by the Davidoff Fund for Lay Leadership.

“I believe that our future parish ministers must be made aware of the significance of the GA experience in the formation of lay leadership in the UUA’s member congregations,” says Denise Davidoff, Meadville Lombard Senior Consultant for Development and Alumni/ae Affairs.  “This is a passion of mine. If clergy don’t encourage laity to attend, participate in and appreciate the importance of UUA governance, lay involvement at GA will diminish and, as a consequence, weaken the Association.”

Denise Davidoff served twelve years on the Board of Trustees, eight of them as Moderator of the Unitarian Universalist Association. Prior to her service on the Board, she led the Unitarian Universalist Women’s Federation, chaired the General Assembly Planning Committee, and served on the Ministerial Fellowship Committee. She currently serves as the Senior Consultant for Development and Alumni/ae Affairs at Meadville Lombard Theological School.

The Davidoff Fund is also providing scholarships to lay leaders of congregations to attend General Assembly who have not had lay leader representation at GA since 2009.