Experience

Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray is a life-long Unitarian Universalist. Serving in ministry for 17 years, Susan brings the vision and the experience needed to lead our Association. From youth leadership at her home congregation in St. Louis to her current ministry in Phoenix, Susan has been part of congregations in all five regions of the UUA, giving her insight and experience in the regional differences across our movement. In the two congregations she has served as settled Minister, Susan has led significant organizational, strategic, numeric and financial growth.

Frederick-Gray Family

Organizing for justice has always been central to Susan’s ministry. Because of her strong relationships and partnerships with community-based organizations in Phoenix, in 2011, current UUA President Peter Morales hired Susan to lead the Arizona Immigration Ministry. In this role, she was central to the planning and implementation of the 2012 Justice General Assembly in Phoenix. Susan was responsible for key political relationships with grassroots migrant rights groups and their connection to the UUA. She was described as “the face, voice and power” behind Justice GA which culminated in a 2000+ person candlelight vigil outside of Tent City Jail.

To the UUA Presidency, Susan brings the ability to articulate clearly our faith and its prophetic imperative in this moment. Additionally, she brings well-developed skills in vision casting, strategic decision-making, and strong spiritual and relational skills needed to develop the buy-in and capacity necessary for change within and outside of our congregations. These skills are critical to lead the Unitarian Universalist Association for greater mission and impact in the 21st century.

Prior to ministry, Susan received her Bachelor of Science in Molecular Biology and worked briefly in the field of genetic research in St. Louis, MO and Cambridge, MA.

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As a candidate for UUA President, I have been following the conversations naming the lack of racial diversity at the highest levels of leadership at the UUA. I am also mindful of the pain and hurt and even confusion that arises as we try to live into an anti-oppressive vision.

Moving from our hopes to sustained change is where the real work lives. From my experience in Phoenix, I have learned that we must be explicit in the vision we hope to achieve and set clear and measurable targets for achieving the vision. This provides transparency and accountability for our progress and failures. And when it comes to living into a multiracial, anti-oppressive future, we must develop deep partnerships with those on the front lives of change, and practice collaborative leadership that brings more voices and perspectives to shape the work and strategies.

As UUA President, I will be committed to moving our faith and Association forward as an anti-racist, anti-oppressive, anti-patriarchal, and multicultural institution. Here are specific actions I will take:

1. Place anti-oppression and multiculturalism at the heart of our vision so it may inform not just a part of our Association, but the whole.

2. Model leadership and power structures that are collaborative, transparent and accountable.

3. Strengthen partnerships with DRUUM and BLUU to inform outcomes, strategies and leadership development of people of color across the Association.

4. Develop deeper partnerships beyond our faith as a way to move beyond narrow cultural norms to see our work in the larger work of collective liberation.

5. Create measurable targets for increasing the multi-racial, multicultural, feminist/womanist leadership within Unitarian Universalism, including specific targets for the diversity of senior and management staff, and hiring procedures that require people of color be interviewed in all major hiring.

6. Measure against the targets. Learn from successes and failures. Keep on the path.

None of us alone has the fullness of perspective needed to live into the vision of where our faith calls us. We need practices that deepen relationship and collaboration that we might hear one another, understand the pain we, our institutions and society create, and love our way forward together.
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Al Beasley, Carla Allison and 6 others like this

Juliejohn Wallace Knott#6 is seldom practiced, I look forward to it's implementation. Starting with metrics on the various "slogans" our denomination has issued over the Years: "Nourish Your Spirit, Heal Our World", "Unitarian Universalism the Uncommon Denomination", "A Spiritual Home Beyond Belief"...we're supposed to be a church that values logic as well as spiritual growth and nurturance of community.

6 hours ago
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Thank you, Katie, for your endorsement!
Thank you for your endorsement Michelle.
Thank you Clif for your endorsement!

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Powerful worship with the vital justice centered First UU Church of New Orleans. One of the hearts I collected reads There are so many injustices. Alone, I would not have any way to fight against them. The UU church provides a framework for social justice work within a thoughtful faith-based community.

Horllaniyi Borlla, Ahmad Naboulsi and 6 others like this

Horllaniyi BorllaLikewise i

2 weeks ago   ·  1
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