Luminary Leaders: Lighting A New Way

Logo for Luminary Leaders Get Inspired Get Connected Lead.

We are looking for exceptional high school aged youth leaders who want to get more involved, network with one another, and be recognized for their skill and achievement. If you have led worship, worked for justice, inspired others, planned events, joined a ministry team or graduated from a Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) youth training, you are an excellent candidate for Luminary Leaders.

Get Inspired

Luminary Leaders is all about getting connected to inspiring Unitarian Universalist leaders of all ages. Luminary Leaders meet with one another and Luminary Alumni (emerging adults who joined Luminary Leaders as youth) in a private Facebook group, with prominent Unitarian Universalist (UU) adult leaders on webcasts and at a private reception at our annual General Assembly.

Get Recognized

Luminary Leaders receive a lapel pin and official certificate recognizing their service to our association. Their congregation also receives notification that a youth in their congregation has joined Luminary Leaders and often recognizes them in a Sunday service. You will be recognized on and may be spotlighted on Blue Boat Blog.


We look to our Luminary Leaders first when there are are national leadership opportunities and national trainings and events. Luminary Leaders have access to grants to further their leadership development. We recruit Luminary Leaders for social media internships with the Blue Boat Blog, focus groups with prominent leaders, open seats on national committees, and worship and program planning at General Assembly.

Joining Luminary Leaders

Join by filling out the Luminary Leaders application. Two Unitarian Universalist adults must provide Letters of Endorsement (PDF) to accompany your application. Letters of Endorsement must be submitted within a month of your application. Once both your application and endorsements are submitted, they will be reviewed to see if you meet the criteria for the Luminary Leaders program.

Endorsing a Luminary Leader Candidate

Adults, you do not need to wait for a youth to apply for Luminary Leaders to endorse them! Many youth tell us the reason they became involved in national leadership or programming was because a UU adult in their life encouraged them to do so. If you know a youth who would be an excellent addition to the program, write them a Letter of Endorsement and encourage them to apply. Applications must be submitted within a month of submitting your letter of endorsement.

Criteria for Joining Luminary Leaders

We are looking for youth with experience in UU congregational and denominational settings, interfaith settings and/or secular (non religious) settings. We prioritize youth with experience in a UU congregations or communities and interfaith experience such as a titled position within a congregation with recognized duties and measures for success, a member of the worship arts team or other ministry team, religious education teacher or training facilitator or as a member of an interfaith project or organization.

Participation in a nationally recognized leadership training is strongly encouraged such as GoldMine Youth Leadership School, Chrysalis Training, trainings hosted by District/Regional/UUA Staff, Midwest Youth Leadership School, Summer Seminary, GA Youth Caucus staff or Thrive Leadership School for Youth of Color. We know that nationally recognized leadership trainings are not accessible to all youth. Therefore, this is not a requirement. If no nationally recognized leadership training is listed on your application, you will be evaluated by your additional congregational experiences.

We love to see district/regional or national leadership experiences such as serving on a district/regional/national council/committee/task force, event planning, publication in district/regional/national media sources (district website, Blue Boat Blog, etc.), but it is not necessary to be considered for the Luminary Leaders program.

See our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for more information about the program.

If you need assistance with applying or endorsing a leader, please contact or (617) 948-4350.

Luminaries Leading
Ad for Luminary Leaders Get Inspired Get Connected Lead.
Luminary Leader Kari Gottfried
Grace Bucklew Luminary Leader
Tessa Hall Luminary Leader
Harriet Wright Luminary Leader
Colleen Murray holders here Luminary Leaders Certificate of Recognition.
Steven Ballesteros holds his Luminary Leaders Certificate of Recognition.
Olivia Calvi holds her Luminary Leaders Certificate of Recognition.
Rhea Brown-Bright holds her Luminary Leaders Certificate of Recognition.

Luminary Leaders meet President Peter Morales and Moderator Jim Key