President’s Message – June 2012

As I near the end of the first year of my Presidency, I reflect on what a special year it has been for me. I have said it many times, I say it here now and I will say it many more times before I am through: I continue to be in awe of the people in our congregation.

I have been a member of the Board since 2007 but didn’t know how much I really didn’t know until this past year. I am so grateful to the Board for their attention, their graciousness and their commitment in navigating us through some difficult times. Deb Corbett and Terry Doemling are going off the Board June 30th. I will miss them and will always be grateful for their insight and perspective. Sue Raufer, moving off the Executive Board, has been a god- send – she has rightly accused me of taking too much on myself, and on several occasions she stepped in and took things over from me without my asking. She, along the rest of the Executive Board (Mike Mernin and Judy Strachan), also made themselves available to me and helped me work some of the more complex issues out in my own mind, steering me in the right direction before bringing them forward, and I can never thank them enough for their direction and support.

Rev. Charlie Ortman has been a fountain of wisdom and information, always willing to help me understand process and precedent, and providing guidance while giving me the space to define myself in this role. I have enjoyed watching Rev. Judy Tomlinson grow in her role as assistant minister and have enjoyed working with her as she embraces her responsibilities. Our office staff, Jaclyn Puleo, Donna Lauckner and Bob Varsalona, is nothing short of miraculous, handling their responsibilities as seamlessly as I’ve ever seen, and providing me with the resources I needed when I asked for them.

Most of all, thanks to you, the members of the congregation, for your kindness, generosity of spirit, sense of hu- mor and your compassion, for each other and for those sorely in need of it. You are an extraordinary group of people. There is no greater privilege for me than to be allowed to represent you as a leader in this congregation. My deepest gratitude and blessings to all of you, and my heartfelt wishes for a fun, terrific summer!

Teresa DeSousa
President, Board of Trustees