From the President

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Seppo Kanerva

On behalf of the Trustees, Trustees Emeriti, Associate Trustees, and the staff of Urantia Foundation I welcome you to this on-line Urantian News, the web periodical of Urantia Foundation. Through this new media the Foundation will inform its friends and supporters about the latest developments, about its projects and accomplishments. We know that this web publication is not a way to reach all of our friends, that is why we do continue publishing and mailing our Annual Report and also Urantian News, even if less frequently than in the past.

The trustees are very grateful to Jay Peregrine, who about a year and a half ago accepted our invitation to become the General Manager and Executive Director of the Foundation’s Chicago head office. He has been instrumental in cutting the expenses of our organisation. Even so, he and his numerically very small staff have performed in an exemplary manner in carrying out the numerous projects of the Foundation and in implementing the decisions of the Board. Apart from the remarkably increasing donations, the curtailment of expenses has been one of the reasons why the Foundation is in a much better financial shape now than it was only a short while ago.

In late 2002, the Board of Trustees decided to establish a new category of participants in the work of the Board. Kathleen Swadling (Australia) and Seppo Kanerva (Finland) were invited to become Associate Trustees of Urantia Foundation. A short while later Carolyn Kendall (USA), Nancy Shaffer (USA), and Jane Ploetz (USA) accepted a similar invitation. Seppo Kanerva was elected a Trustee in May 2003.

About the same time the Board decided to use the opportunity, provided in the Declaration of Trust and the Foundation By-laws, to appoint former Trustees as Trustees Emeriti. Consequently, Patricia Mundelius (Trustee 1990—1997) serves as Trustee Emerita and Neal Waldrop (Trustee 1989—1992) as Trustee Emeritus.

The Associate Trustees and Trustees Emeriti participate in the Board proceedings as non-voting members. In creating this new category of Associate Trustees and in appointing two Trustees Emeriti, the Board wanted to have access to the advice and wisdom of a larger number of people. Associate Trustees are appointed for one calendar year and only two consecutive reappointments are possible. These limitations exist because of the Board’s desire to have a chance of learning about a wider and possibly varying spectrum of advice and to grant an opportunity, over the years, to a larger number of Urantia Book readers and students to serve the revelation and the Foundation in this capacity. No similar limitations concern the Trustees Emeriti.

On 14 October 2005, at a closed session the Board of Trustees reappointed Nancy Shaffer and Jane Ploetz Associate Trustees and decided to increase the number of Associate Trustees to five. The Board appointed René Hagenaars (The Netherlands), Sue Tennant (Canada), and Jorgan Andrews (USA) as new Associate Trustees. Their terms begin on 1 January 2006.

We look forward to working with the new Associate Trustees and to continuing our cooperative relationship with the Trustees Emeriti and the reappointed Associate Trustees.

It was difficult for the members of the Board not to reappoint Kathleen Swadling and Carolyn Kendall, whose service has been excellent but who had already been reappointed twice.

I quote one Trustee’s words addressed to Carolyn Kendall and Kathleen Swadling: “Your love, insights, wisdom, hard work, selfless devotion, and intelligent guidance have helped renew this Board and Urantia Foundation – – You have taught me what selflessness and devotion look like. – – You have taught me what forgiveness and steadfastness look like. Thank you for everything.”

Upon the election of officers in April 2004 the present constitution of the Board of Trustees is the following:

  • President - Seppo Kanerva
  • Vice-President - Georges Michelson-Dupont
  • Treasurer - Gard Jameson
  • Secretary - Mo Siegel
  • Trustee - Richard Keeler

The Trustees are profoundly grateful to our friends, supporters, and volunteers. The Foundation has always been and continues to be fully dependent on your material and spiritual help and assistance.

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