The Rev. Elena Larssen became the new Minister for Volunteer Engagement for the United Church of Christ in May 2021, following eight years of service as Senior Minister of First Congregational Church of Long Beach, California. She also serves Vice President of the United Church Board for Ministerial Assistance (UCBMA).
How would you describe your role at the UCMBA?
I have served as a UCBMA director since 2010 and was asked to join the board at the time of the formation of Next Generation Leadership Initiative (NGLI). I’ve been engaged in strategic planning, the capital campaign, extensive leadership development and program evaluation, and have served on the NGLI Steering and Selection Committee. One of the most important projects is being simply true to my place in the church, as one of the relatively small demographic population of clergy in their 40s.
By Summer Intern Rachel Jacobs
After a hard and long 2020, the importance of digital marketing and communications has grown exponentially, such as the use of social media to promote and market products like never before. Knowing this, I wanted to gain real-world experience outside the classroom in creating marketing materials, so I applied to the Pension Boards’ Summer Internship Program as a Communications and Marketing Intern with the hopes of doing just that. When I was offered the internship opportunity, I was ecstatic at the idea of expanding my skills and helping such a great organization come up with successful marketing campaigns.
By Summer Intern Marco Lima
A top priority at the Pension Boards since I joined the team as a Finance Intern has been to remain competitive in the industry. I am fortunate to have been able to contribute toward this goal that is helping to orient the Pension Boards toward a successful future.
I have been tasked with two primary objectives: first, to help create the marketing agenda for our newer investment products; and second, to integrate the firm’s investment accounting to a more efficient Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) program.
By Summer Intern Olivia Gong
The United States’ healthcare system is convoluted and complex, always changing and shifting in policies, regulations, and practices. As the world begins to slowly recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, I am continuously reminded of how the past year and a half has impacted all our lives. I am in awe of the medical and technological progressions that have been made but also intrigued by the performance of the stock market. Working as the Health Plans intern at the Pension Boards–United Church of Christ (PBUCC) has allowed me to further enrapture myself in the intersections of healthcare and economics during these uncertain times.
By Summer Intern Aidan Choi
This summer, I was delighted to accept the offer to serve as an Internal Audit Intern for the Pension Boards' 2021 Summer Internship Program. It was an excellent opportunity to learn about the organization's internal audit function. I have always dreamed about working as a future auditor, and this internship helped me gain real life experience, while also learning the importance of teamwork and working in a caring environment. The Pension Boards allowed me to use the auditing knowledge I gained in school such as understanding the firm and its structure before starting the substantive internal audit procedure.
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The Pension Boards introduced its Summer Internship Program (SIP) in 2019 with five interns participating in a 10-week onsite program with key departmental leaders. When the pandemic made it necessary to work from home in 2020, a shorter, hybrid internship model was developed in which four interns spent one day a week onsite and worked remotely the remainder of the time. The program has proven to be a fruitful experience—both for the interns and the Pension Boards—as well as a talent pipeline for our organization. Three of our current staff colleagues began their professional careers with us following their internship experiences.
The Pension Boards and its affiliates are currently composed of 15 elected Trustee board members, and one Trustee member who serves by agreement as a result of their position as General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ. There are also two (non-Trustee) Directors appointed by the Chair serving on the United Church Board for Ministerial Assistance. The governing body numbers are established by resolution and conform to our bylaws. The Pension Boards seeks Trustees and Directors who bring skills and experience relevant to the financial services business.