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Ambassador for Innovation and Engagement, Application Close: December 31, 2019 

Ministry Team Research & Development Office, a Division of the Center for Analytics, Research, and Data (CARD)  
Reports To Director, CARD and Research & Development  
FLSA Status Exempt  
Salary Grade 8  
Full-Time/Part-Time Full-Time  
Category National and Global Ministries, Cleveland, Ohio  
Starting Salary  


The UCC Ambassador for Innovation and Engagement will scan the landscape for innovative practices that would transition well to support the strengthening and revitalization of Local Church settings. They will have the capacity to see the possibilities for something that may not exist yet – but could be useful in revitalizing church - and have the expertise to help put the building blocks in place to pilot and test new ideas. The Ambassador for Innovation and Engagement will be at ease navigating networks, collaborating and improvising, and is comfortable owning the role of change agent.

At the direction of the Director of CARD, this creative spirit scouts ideas, evaluates for usefulness, prioritizes them for idea acceleration, screens for various innovation sources, conducts workshops for brainstorming, uses innovation tools and derives, culls, and curates ideas from all these activities.

The Ambassador for Innovation and Engagement is a 3 year term position with the possibility of an extension contingent upon funding.


  • Assists the UCC to grow engagement, share ideas, champion innovation and help facilitate the idea sharing across the church.
  • Opens a “UCC ideas” process to UCC audiences, searches for and scouts ideas and new innovations beyond the church setting in the sense of open innovation.
  • Under direction of Director of CARD, supports the evaluation of innovation ideas, and assists in prioritizing for idea acceleration by making recommendations.
  • Curates an idea collection and helps to equip the strategic orientation of innovation management and development.
  • Identifies and communicates trends in the ideas of innovation and the metrics of success in innovation
  • Analyzes the various ideas’ opportunities, risks, strengths and weaknesses, as well as the seeds of potential game changing inputs for the future, in alignment with the UCC’s purpose and mission in innovation.
  • Creates conditions of possibility to sensitize and persuade for innovation, supporting frameworks so that successful innovation is encouraged throughout the UCC.
  • Assists the Director of CARD selecting and prioritizing the right projects for Research & Development so that the maximum value and success can be derived from limited resources.
  • Assists with measuring the achievement of the innovation strategy and innovation goals and initiates/supports corrective measures in the event of deviations.
  • Supports a synergized effort that coordinates the work of the Research & Development Office with the broader effort of the UCC Center for Analytics, Research and Data.
  • Develops synergies with the Faith Education, Innovation, and Formation (Faith INFO) Team, Ministerial Excellence, Support, and Authorization Team, and other appropriate National Office teams.
  • Actively networks throughout the UCC to be aware of innovation work being done at the local level in congregations, Conferences, and ministries
  • Serves as staff to the UCC innovation table and staff representative in all innovation forms.
  • Under the direction of the CARD Director, facilitates identifying sites for R&D projects and provides input on project proposals and final reports as needed
  • Promotes the work of the Research and Development office as well as the work of the Center for Analytics, Research, and Data throughout the UCC
Position Requirements

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: The requirements listed below are representative of knowledge, skills and/or abilities required to perform successfully in this position.

  • A bachelor’s degree in a related field or equivalent experience, or a combination of academic study and experience;
  • Demonstrated understanding and broad knowledge of the United Church of Christ, its diverse theology, traditions, heritage, polity and structure.
  • Self-starter with initiative, ability to work with minimum supervision, able to nimbly pivot and/or improvise as need arises;
  • A person of faith with grounding in the United Church of Christ and its core values.
  • Significant leadership experience and involvement in local churches
  • Awareness of emerging innovation trends in the wider world, innovation methods and creativity, and capacity to scale these in appropriate ways to UCC.
  • Awareness and sensitivity to critical issues facing Local Churches
  • Ability to ascertain and leverage emerging characteristics of vital congregations
  • Ability to think strategically and conceptually with proven success in building and maintaining strong relationships across diverse constituencies.
  • Excellent technology, and communication skills, and an understanding/articulation of both effective and emerging approaches to being church in the 21st Century.
  • Desire and sensitivity to work in diverse racial, ethnic, cultural and religious settings with commitment to pluralism in the workplace as well as in one’s understanding of mission;
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively, collegially and independently;
  • Willingness and ability to travel extensively within the United States.


  • Master's degree or equivalent in a relevant discipline such as in areas of divinity or theology
  • Ministerial Authorization, United Church of Christ
  • Membership in the UCC is preferred.


This position does not need to be based in Cleveland, OH.

This job description is not intended to be a complete list of all duties and responsibilities required for the position and is subject to review and change at any time in accordance with the needs of the ministry. Since no job description can detail all duties and responsibilities that may be required from time to time in the performance of a position, duties and responsibilities that may be inherent in a position shall also be considered part of the position holder’s responsibility.

It is expected that the person who holds this position will conduct themselves in a manner consistent with the policies of the UCC and in a manner that will reflect positively on the organization. All staff are encouraged to nurture safety within the work performed on behalf of the UCC by being attentive to self-care, education, maintaining appropriate boundaries, and the importance of referring those in need to supportive and helpful resources.

Comprehensive Benefits Package Employer paid Health, Dental, Life, and Pension Benefits  
Application Deadline December 31, 2019  
About the Organization The United Church of Christ

Our faith is 2000 years old. Our thinking is not.

We believe in God's Continuing Testament.

We believe in Extravagant Welcome

We believe the church's mission is to Change Lives


This position is currently not accepting applications.

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