2019 Congregational Meeting Notes

Our Congregational Meeting to Elect Officers will be held Sunday, October 20, 2019, immediately following the 9 am Worship Service (at approximately 10:15 am). The meeting will be held in the Sanctuary, with agenda items to include the election of 2020 officers (elders, deacons, and officers of the Society), a preview of the 2020 budget, and approval of the church’s updated bylaws.

See below for the information to be discussed during the meeting:

Updated Bylaws


Candidates for Election – 2020

New Deacon nominees:
Kristen Collins
Dee Drain
Stanley Morales
Marlene Sefton
Jack Stewart
Tricia Vaaga

Current Deacons nominated to extend their service
for an additional year:
Cynthia Bridges
Al Covert
Lorna Gayle
David Jones
Kim Langois
Julie Lewis

Lisa Fisher
JJ Ivaska
John Powell
Clark Robinson

Officers of the Society:
John Powell, President
Jide Nzelibe, Vice President
Clark Robinson, Treasurer
LeRoy Klemt, Secretary

Nominating Committee:
Megan Baxa
Richard Bell
Peg Forbes
Melanie Myatt
Dave Sloane


On June 26, 2019, Session unanimously approved several changes to the governance of the Church. These changes, effective January 1, 2020, are:

  • A move from a bi-cameral (Session + Board of Trustees including 4 officers of the Society) to a unicameral (Session + 4 officers of the Society) structure, with Session acting as the Board of Trustees of the Society and the President and Treasurer of the Society being Elders,
  • A reduction of the number of Elders from 18 to 12 over the next 3 years,
  • A realignment of Ministries and committees into the following eight Councils (all under the responsibility of Session):
    • Community Life and Pastoral Care
    • Discipleship (Stewardship, Small Groups, Adult Education, Membership)
    • Our Families Our Children (Children, Youth)
    • Worship
    • Mission
    • Personnel
    • Leadership (Nominating)
    • Resource Steward (Budget, Facilities, Finance and Endowment)

As a result of these changes, the Church’s by-laws need to be amended. The by-laws will be submitted for approval at the congregational meeting on Sunday Oct 20, 2019. Copies are currently available at the front desk.

The reasons for these changes are:

  • To align and streamline spiritual and business considerations under the single leadership of Session, inspired by the Simple Church model,
  • To free up time and talent of Church members that is currently dedicated to governance to directly engage in Ministry.

What does not change?

  • Ministries and programs continues as they do today,
  • The First Presbyterian Society of Evanston continues to be the legal entity that owns and maintains the property, employs the staff, and manages the endowments and funds,
  • The Society continues to have the same number of officers (President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer),
  • The roles and responsibilities of Session and of the Board Deacons remain unchanged, as per the PCUSA Book of Order.

Detailed governance model changes clarification