“Thank You, Lake Union Family!” Don Livesay Announces Retirement

Don Livesay, Lake Union President, announced his retirement in the September issue of the Lake Union Herald, the Lake Union Conference’s monthly magazine:

“You may have heard that Barbara and I are retiring, so this will be my last opportunity to share one more of about 84 editorials over the past 8-3/4 years. Forty-three years of ministry have included volumes of interactions with people and amazing experiences which have helped me formulate many important values.”

Livesay then went on to share 29 “one-liner values” which he said, “only begin to communicate both succinct and deeper principles.”

A few of the one-liners included:

  • "Accountability in society and the church is imperative"
  • "The most blessed among us should help the less privileged"
  • "Authority is not about power nor control, but effectively authoring people into spiritual, purposeful and functional individuals"
  • "A positive climate comes when people feel safe, respected, and nurtured"
  • "Compliance undermines good function while commitment produces linear, positive results"
  • "I do some of my greatest sinning when I believe I am right"
  • "Periodic leadership transition is healthy for an organization"

Livesay concluded his farewell editorial by saying, “Serving in the Lake Union has been one of the greatest joys of our ministry. The people, the churches, the conferences, Andrews University and the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary are all part of our treasured experience. We are extremely thankful God brought us here. We wish each of you God’s greatest blessings as you serve Him in the mission to which He has called you...”

You can read Livesay’s full editorial on the Lake Union Herald’s website.

The Lake Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists covers the states of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, and a portion of Minnesota. It is comprised of the Illinois, Indiana, Lake Region, Michigan, and Wisconsin Conferences. According to the General Conference Office of Archives, Statistics, and Research website, there are 503 churches in the Lake Union and over 87,000 members.

Alisa Williams is managing editor for SpectrumMagazine.org.

Image Credit: LakeUnion.org

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This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/8198

I wonder how open and publicly accountable as to income, expenses, salaries, travel allowances and investments the Lake Union is? They receive donations, how much do they freely donate to others? Do they offer a 990 tax form. I don’t think so.

The IRS states that, "by making full and accurate information about its mission, activities, finance, and governance publicly available, a charity encourages transparency and accountability to its constituents.

“The most blessed among us should help the less privileged”

What has the Lake Union done to cut their expenses to help the less privileged? Have they chosen to sell expense office properties and transition into modest lower income office space? Actions speak louder than words.

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just so you know, a church, unlike other charities organized under sec 501©(3) of the IRS code, do NOT have to produce OR file a form 990! the answer to your last question is, ‘not much’.

No need to immmediately turn a well deserved tribute into a platform for negativity.

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Don Livesay is a thoughtful, smart, balanced, Godly church leader. His ministry has blessed many and his leadership within the NAD will be sorely missed.


Perhaps I’m wrong, but I haven’t seen any mention from Spectrum about Don Livesay’s replacement being Jay Gallimore of recent George Knight-book-banning fame.

I believe Jay Gallimore, himself, announced his new position at the Traverse City, MI, SDA church on a recent Sabbath.

Got an email from Spectrum saying there will be an election. . . wait and see, then, what it was that Gallimore ‘announced’. Changes, at least.

According to the Lake Union’s press release about Don Livesay’s retirement, the election of a new president is scheduled for September 21.