Board of Directors

United Methodist Women Board of Directors Elected

United Methodist Women Board of Directors Elected
Andris Salter, United Methodist Women Operations Officer

Every four years, United Methodist Women members elect a national United Methodist Women Board of Directors. Twenty women are elected at quadrennial jurisdiction events: Four from the North Central, Northeastern and South Central Jurisdictions, two from the Western Jurisdiction, and six from the Southeastern Jurisdiction based on number of members in each region. Each jurisdiction also elects two alternates. Five additional directors are later nominated and elected by the national organization to help ensure diversity.

United Methodist Women jurisdiction events are usually large, in-person gatherings with worship, speakers, workshops, volunteering and actions in addition to elections. This year, because of COVID-19 safety concerns, the events were cancelled and elections, for the first time, took place online.

Work of the board of directors

At the national level, the organization of United Methodist Women is led by a board of directors with advisory input from the program advisory group. The work is guided by United Methodist Women’s Purpose and implemented by national office staff. The board sets policy, secures funds from members and determines the organization’s budget. The board elects a leadership team of a president, vice president, secretary, finance chair and governance chair to help carry out its work. The board also has a commitment to care for retired deaconesses, missionaries and home missionaries who were directly employed by United Methodist Women through the Brooks-Howell home in Ashville, North Carolina, and it authorizes use of funds for upkeep of United Methodist Women properties. It also hires, among other duties, supervises and provides support to the general secretary/CEO and annually elects the assistant general secretaries.

Election process

Voting delegates for each jurisdiction include the United Methodist Women jurisdiction leadership team (president, vice president, treasurer, secretary, chair of nominations), conference voting delegates (three women elected from each conference), current national board of directors within the jurisdiction, current program advisory group members within the jurisdiction, a representative from the jurisdiction Association of Deaconesses, Home Missioners and Home Missionaries, and active bishops of the jurisdiction. Leadership teams are elected as slates, and voters elect directors one at time from the list of nominees until a majority vote is achieved.

Elections for the 2021-2024 United Methodist Women Board of Directors were held online, via Zoom, with the help of Ubiqus, with whom in-person electronic voting was done at previous jurisdiction meetings. A comprehensive guide to online voting was sent to all voting delegates ahead of time, and two training sessions were held. Voters practiced with a practice vote before the meeting started. Delegates were able to vote safely and securely via smartphone, tablet or computer.

In addition to names of nominees, each jurisdiction posted short videos from each nominee so voters could better get to know those for whom they were deciding to vote.

“I am proud to say that we were ready,” said Anita Turner, chair of the Western Jurisdiction committee on nominations. “We had decided months earlier to try something new. Our videos and profile booklets were ready and in place when the decision was made to cancel the in-person meetings, and we were happy to share our experiences and info with the other jurisdictions. With a very high percentage of participation in the voting process, the election itself went very smoothly and quickly.

“Now, may we move forward, always being aware of the opportunities and obligations to make a difference in our world. We are United Methodist Women and we can and do make a difference.”

Attendees at the elections included voting delegates, observers and co-hosts. United Methodist Women Operations Officer Andris Salter served as electioneer, with Bob Alfano of Ubiqus facilitated and tracked voting.

Jurisdiction presidents co-hosted the virtual gatherings. Attendees also heard from jurisdiction leadership members as prayers and mission moments were offered between elections.

“The North Central Jurisdiction was shocked to find out we would be the first to hold quadrennial elections, as we were scheduled to be the last in-person event,” said Rita Smith, president of the North Central Jurisdiction United Methodist Women. “I had to tell our team, ‘This is an honor to be the first to hold elections during this unprecedented time in our history. We can, and we will do this, as United Methodist Women we can do remote voting. After all, we are bold, courageous, and faithful women!’

“We were apprehensive, but Andris had faith in us. As elections took place, volunteers (from the jurisdiction) prayed and sang between votes, which brought blessed assurance all would be fine—and it was. It was a humbling experience, and I am so happy all went well.”

Election results

The following women were elected to the United Methodist Women Board of directors, listed in order of election per jurisdiction. Also listed are the leadership teams, voted on as a slate, in each jurisdiction. The additional five members of the board will be elected during the board organizational meeting in October 2020. See the nominees here.

North Central
Krishna Heyward, Indiana
Ruby Anderson, Michigan
Dawn Armstrong, Dakotas
Roxie Hutsell, West Ohio

Camille McCaskill, Illinois Great Rivers
Lynn Calvert, Iowa 

Leadership team:
President: Marchelle Phelps
Vice president: Patricia Bostic
Secretary: Becky Heeren
Treasurer: Sylvia Kempton
Chair of nominations: Elizabeth Everitt
Nominations committee: Linda Johnson Crowell, Elizabeth Jayapalan, Simmie Proctor, Virginia Coates

Denise-Nicole Stone, Western Pennsylvania
Valerie Clark, Upper New York
Hazel McIntosh, New York
Colleen F. Cates, Baltimore-Washington

Denise Snyder, Peninsula Delaware
Yvonne Bouknight, Greater New Jersey

Leadership team:
President: Mikele Haskins-Delmore
Vice president: Gail Douglas-Boykin
Secretary: Janet Evans
Treasurer: Mary Brooks
Chair of nominations: Marilyn Powell
Nominations committee: Carolyn Burrows, Donna Lowe, Marsha Banks, Melanie Keith

South Central
Darlene R Alfred, Central Texas
Cynthia Rives, North Texas
Daryl June Joe, New Mexico
Louise Niemann, Great Plains

Lynn Baker, Arkansas
Cynthia Johnson, Rio Texas

Leadership team:
President: Ellen Lipsey
Vice president: Cynthia Alfred Logan
Secretary: Lynne Grandstaff
Treasurer: Carroll Constant
Chair of nominations: Lisa Maupin
Committee on nominations: Terry Gregory,​ Cynthia R. Harry, Marcia Butcher, Maria Heredia

Betty Helms, Alabama-West Florida
Deloris Carhee, North Georgia
Haejin Ban, North Georgia
Caroline Martin, Tennessee
Debra Payne, North Alabama
Melba McCallum, North Carolina

Kim Eller, Western North Carolina
Tonya Lanier, Western North Carolina

Leadership team:
President: Sue Owen
Vice President: Kay Roach
Secretary: Hazel N. Hall
Treasurer: Tryphenia Speed
Chair of nominations: Barbara Carroll
Committee on nominations: Kristin Dorris, Melba Mitchell, Linda Gale Rigdon, Betty Taylor

Jana Jones, Mountain Sky
Estella Wallace, Pacific Northwest

Mele Faiva Manu-Blagojevich, California Pacific
Roselyn Moy Collins, Oregon-Idaho

Leadership team:
President: Bonita Jane Miller
Vice president: Stacey King
Secretary: Amanda Hutchinson
Treasurer: Sandra Flaherty
Chair on nominations: Lynda Montgomery
​Committee on nominations: Julie Asuncion, Hamu Chigwada, ​Eileen Guillermo, Maya Parmar

The extended governance committee, comprising board governance committee members along with the president, vice president, secretary of the board and chairpersons of the other committees of the board, has sent nominees for the five additional board members to the committee on nominations, who will finalize the slate for the additional board members and for the board officers to be elected at the organizational meeting, currently set for October 8-11, 2020.

You can learn more about how United Methodist Women organizes by downloading the United Methodist Women Handbook.

Tara Barnes is editor of response

Posted or updated: 8/10/2020 12:00:00 AM