I took a little time recently to crunch some numbers.
|Name||Birth Year||Start Year of Presidency||Age at beginning of Presidency||Years in Ministry Prior to Presidency||Years at UUA Prior to Presidency||Total years UU prof. experience|
The last four presidents were all born at the beginning of the Baby Boomer era. By the end of Peter Morales' presidency, they will have governed for 32 years. And they are all men. We've made great strides by having our first African-American president, and our first Latino president.
I think it's time for a woman or transgender president, and it's time for Generation X to step up to the lead. Generation X ministers now have 10-20 years of experience, so we're right in the bracket of what we expect from a UUA president. The oldest Gen-Xers are now turning 50; with ages in our thirties and forties now, we're the right age to govern, if our history is any marker of what we're looking for.
Of course we should look for the right person with the right experience and a sense of vision and ability to govern and a deep theology and deep social justice commitment. We should look for a president who can lead. But there's no reason why this person can't be a woman, or someone gender-queer. And there's every reason why it might be a Gen-Xer.
I'm clear that this is not something I'm looking to do personally, and least in this stage of my career. I have too many holes in my skill set -- soliciting large donations, just to name an obvious one that this small country church pastor lacks. But I still hope it's a Gen-Xer, and am ready to think outside the male box of what president looks like. I'm looking to my cohort and seeing who inspires me, challenges me, and who has shown leadership already in my generation. They're out there; they're ready to lead; and they will be amazing.