Jessica York appointed Director of Congregational Life

Picture of Jessica York, Director of Congregational Life, smiling in front of a park bench

The UUA announces the appointment of Jessica York as Director of Congregational Life. Starting Nov. 1, Jessica will lead the UUA’s largest staff group which includes the staff teams of all UUA five regions.

“We are thrilled to have Jessica in this role,” says UUA President the Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray. “Her collaborative leadership, creativity and experience are exactly what we need to help move our system forward in embodying mission alignment, faithful practice and liberation.”

Jessica has served as the UUA’s Co-Director of Ministries and Faith Development since 2017, and previously served as and Faith Development Director from 2014-2017 and Youth Programs Director from 2007-2014. Before working at the UUA, Jessica was the Director of Religious Education at the UU Church of Birmingham and served on the Mid-South District Board. She lives in Birmingham, AL with her partner Ralph.

The position of Director of Congregational Life had been vacant since July 2017, when the Rev. Scott Tayler resigned. In the interim, the staff group has been jointly led by the Regional Leads of each of the UUA’s five regions.

Jessica shares the following words:

“African American Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm said, 'Service is the rent we pay for the privilege of living on this earth.' I started my service to this faith when I walked through the door of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Birmingham 21 years ago. As I journey to serve Unitarian Universalism in a new role, I am humbled, honored, and heartened: humbled because the responsibility feels serious and weighty; honored by the faith of our leaders that trusts me with such a weight; heartened because I know I do not bear this weight alone. I look forward to seeing how you and I – through collaborative leadership - can help create a solid and vital faith home for those currently in our congregations and UU communities and the spiritually hungry who have yet to find their way home.”

“Following Jessica’s transition, we remain committed to shared leadership in Ministries and Faith Development,” says UUA Executive Vice President Carey McDonald. “We are open to new possibilities, and will be sharing more about the transition in the coming weeks.”