New Year News

Michael J. Readinger

Michael J. Readinger

Welcome to 2018 Friends!

As we enter the new year, I thought it would be nice to share the current state of affairs in the CHHSM world. This may be the first time you have heard some of this and some of this may be familiar, but it is worth telling you what has occurred and what will be happening.

CHHSM ended 2017 in sound financial condition with a modest surplus from operations and outstanding investment returns for our reserve funds. Management and the Board have been good stewards of the resources entrusted to us as we maximized revenue and curbed expenses wherever possible. Although we are optimistic for the future, we are maintaining a moderately defensive posture as a safeguard in the event of an economic pullback.

Mary Paxton, Associate for Engagement and Executive Administration, started working on our team on January 2, 2018. Mary brings strong non-profit management, fundraising and analytical skills along with a deep sense of faith and a commitment to our shared ministry. Prior to joining CHHSM’s staff, Mary served as the Director of the Office of Philanthropy and Stewardship UCC and as a Board Member for CHHSM. We welcome Mary and her many talents as we also say goodbye to Loey Powell (again) and thank her for her service and wisdom in our transition period last year.

Danielle (5 years), Catherine (4 years), Paula (1 year) and Mike (13 years, 3 as President/CEO) remain invested and committed to serving our member ministries and all of you to our best ability. Please feel free to reach out to us for anything you need in administrative support, business services, leadership formation or consultation engagements. Additionally, our contract support teams in Accounting, Information Technology and Marketing/ Communications are all long-tenured individuals who are available to assist you with your needs.

The 2018 CHHSM Annual Gathering will be held in St. Louis from March 1-3 this year. We are excited to announce the Child, Youth and Family Services affinity group meeting and optional site visits/tours on February 28, 2018, to kick off the meeting. Please be sure to check the Annual Gathering schedule so you can maximize your time with us. Additionally, our German partners from Diakonie Rheinland-Westphalia-Lippe will join us for one week of visits and meetings and they will present a session at the Annual Gathering explaining the macro-environment for health and human services in Germany.

Our 2018-2019 Nollau Class is forming now and applications are being accepted until the end of March. The first retreat is in mid-April, so please consider this exciting year-long course of study and leadership discernment now. For those of you unable to get away for the full Nollau experience, check out the Nollau To You one-day retreat session. This is an excellent way to gain exposure to the concepts taught in the longer course with a much smaller investment of time. We are committed to offering the Nollau To You retreats four times in 2018.

All of the above are expressions of the various components of the new strategic plan launched by the CHHSM Board and Staff at the end of 2017. Our focus on membership engagement and connecting all of our UCC related constituents through meetings, gatherings, story-telling, advocacy initiatives and sharing of resources live in all that I mentioned above. This is what we heard you tell us when you said Bold Vision, Shared Values and Inspired Leaders. I invite you to join in all of this as your part of our shared ministry of working together to create a just, caring and compassionate world.

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