Succession Planning

Shenango Presbytery is seeking a new Executive Presbyter/Stated Clerk to succeed David Dawson.  

Succession Planning work with Russ Crabtree of Holy Cow! Consulting

Executive Presbyter Nominating Committee  (coming soon…)

Q&A regarding the process and timeline

Q.        When did the Succession Planning begin?

A.        David Dawson announced last May that he would be retiring at the end of February, 2014

Q.        What led to the Succession Planning approach rather than an interim?

A.        The Presbytery Council decided September 3 to accept the proposal by Russ Crabtree of Holy Cow! Consulting.   Ten years ago Russ wrote a book about this process.  The cost of the contract and expenses is about $12,000 for which the Synod of the Trinity is paying $8,000.  Russ have been consulting with  the Presbytery leadership through a process to prepare for seeking a successor to David Dawson.  See  for the process and reports.

Q.        When was the Executive Presbyter Nominating Committee elected?

A.        It was elected at the September 24 Presbytery meeting.  The committee met in November with Bruce Stevens, Executive of the Synod of the Trinity, and has met regularly thereafter.  They also participated in a Foundations Retreat (November 15 – 16) and a Findings/Recommendations Retreat (February 7 – 8) with Russ Crabtree.

Q.        Can the Presbytery afford a new full-time Executive Presbyter?

A.        Careful research was done by the Budget and Finance Committee with the assistance of Howard Moss (Treasurer) and Shari Getway (Financial Secretary for 13 years).  It was determined that even in a worst case scenario the Presbytery can afford a full-time person for at least 3 years.

Q.        Why is the Executive Presbytery and Stated Clerk position being combined?

A.        This staffing approach has become fairly common in the 172 presbyteries across the country.  It provided for cost savings (along with other smaller staff adjustments) and our Stated Clerk, Jerry Mahaffey, has indicated that he would like to retire.

Q.        How will candidates be identified and will there be any interest in the position?

A.        The  position was advertised in early January on the PC(USA) national website and in Presbyterian Outlook.  Synod Executive, Bruce Stevens, has assured the committee that there would be significant interest and that has proven to be true.

Q.        What is the timeline from here?

A.        The EP Nominating Committee has announced that it will receive applications through February.  If they are satisfied that they have qualified candidates, they will be interviewing soon.  When they have a candidate whom they are prepared to nominate, the Presbytery will need to vote on their nomination.  The projected starting date for the new person is June 1, but that all depends on how the process develops from here.

Q.        What will happen during the projected 3 months with no Executive Presbyter?

A.        The Transition Team/Steering Committee has been empowered by Council to arrange for someone to work 8 – 10 hours per week assisting the Committee on Ministry beginning March 1.