Women's Division reduces staff


By Linda Bloom

United Methodist News Service

NEW YORK — Responding to needed budget cuts, the Women’s Division, United Methodist Board of Global Ministries, has announced the elimination of four executive staff positions and four support staff positions.


Staff members were told June 12 about the changes. The Women’s Division is the administrative arm of United Methodist Women.


Jan Love, the division’s chief executive, told United Methodist News Service that one of the motivating factors for the staff cuts was “to ensure that our spending on an annual basis is in keeping with our annual income.”


In addition to reducing staff, the division plans to “re-envision” its work so it can “continue being a vibrant force for mission,” she said. Such a re-evaluation will match “the priorities that have already been articulated … with the resources we have.”


Eliminated executive positions are executive secretary for resource development, staffed by Carolyn Simms; executive secretary for spiritual and theological development, J. Ann Craig; executive secretary for mission team training, based in Atlanta, Jan Winfield; and executive secretary for mission team training, based in Dallas, Liz Williams.


A longtime executive staff member, Else Mia Adjali, also has announced that she is retiring at the end of 2006. Adjali serves as executive secretary for global concerns and leads the division’s United Nations office.


Love said the affected support staff members are being offered similar jobs within the Board of Global Ministries, and other services will be offered to the affected executives.


The reduction in staff and programs was approved by division directors during their spring meeting in early April. Love explained then that the division was chronically overspending about $4 million a year. Part of the problem was that although directors had “voted on every penny” of the money spent, not all of the expenditures were listed within the general budget, making it difficult to assess overall spending.


Directors agreed that the 2007 budget would be fully integrated, “displaying all sources of income and all spending in one comprehensive document.”