The Women of the ELCA 21-member churchwide executive board is elected every three years by the triennial convention.
The convention is made up of voting members from our 64 WELCA synodical women’s organizations plus the members of the churchwide executive board. The triennial convention is the highest legislative authority in our organization.
Between conventions, the executive board functions as the board of directors for the organization and the interim legislative authority. The primary role of the board is to steer the organization in the right direction, helping it meet its mission. The board has an oversight role, monitoring the activities of the organization and ensuring that the organization is well-equipped to fulfill its mission. It establishes broad policies to guide and protect the organization. It monitors legal requirements. It receives regular reports from staff.
The board for the 2014-2017 triennium was elected at the Ninth Triennial Convention held July 22-24, 2014, in Charolotte, N.C.. Patti Austin of Decatur, Ga., is serving a three-year term as executive board president. Other board officers include Jody Smiley, vice president, Blacksburg, Va.; Ely Smith, treasurer, Fircrest, Wash.; and Becky Shurson, secretary, Yucaipa, Calif.