Thom Wilkerson, from the Desert Southwest Conference, will be working in 2018 to help shape the way Wespath Benefits and Investments (Wespath) serves The United Methodist Church by participating in Wespath’s inaugural Young Leaders Advisory Board (Y-LAB).
Wespath is the general agency of the UMC responsible for administering benefits and investing retirement plan assets.
Wespath created Y-LAB in 2017 to engage and better serve young adults dedicated to the Church. Members are partnering with Wespath to identify gaps in connecting with young clergy and lay employees, generate ideas that help improve Wespath’s products and services, and help shape how Wespath shares information.
In November, the group traveled to Pensacola, Florida to attend Wespath’s revitup! For a Lifetime in Ministry, an event for young clergy, where they provided insights about how Wespath can enhance its educational outreach. The group also met at Wespath’s headquarters in Glenview, Ill in September, where they interacted with Wespath employees and senior leadership, including General Secretary, Barbara Boigegrain.
Their hard work will continue into 2018!
“The discussion among the Y-LAB members has been lively and energetic, and their feedback has already proven valuable,” said Ms. Boigegrain. “We appreciate their willingness to help us better serve the Church, and look forward to hearing more from this engaging group of young UMC leaders!”
The 15 Y-LAB members are all aged 35 or younger, and represent both laity and clergy across the U.S. Y-LAB members were selected by Directors of Connectional Ministries in their UMC jurisdictions who viewed these individuals as young leaders within the Connection.
Wespath has created a similar Conference Advisory Board consisting of Conference Benefits Officers and Treasurers across the UMC in order to better engage with, and connect to, the annual conferences and participants it serves.