General Conference 2008: Angela Brown of Jones UMC, San Francisco, Elected to UM Judicial Council

April 28, 2008

By Bruce Pettit

California-Nevada News Service


FORT WORTH, April 28, 2008 – Angela Brown of Jones Memorial UMC in San Francisco was elected today as one of nine members of the United Methodist Judicial Council, which decides disciplinary and constitutional matters for 11 million United Methodists around the world.


Two incumbents were defeated for re-election: the Rev. Keith Boyette of Virginia and laywoman Mary Daffin of Texas. Boyette wrote the 2005 decision that allowed a pastor in his state to deny local church membership to a gay man. Daffin had joined him in that decision.


The entire progressive slate of five won the five open slots, as 992 delegates met in their sixth day of General Conference.


The second lay person elected was Ruben Reyes, an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the Philippines. Neither Brown nor Reyes is present here in Texas.


The three clergy members elected were Kathi Austin-Mahle of Minnesota, Belton Joyner of North Carolina, and William Lawrence of Texas.


All those elected needed a majority of ballots cast. Brown and Reyes both won on the second ballot – Brown winning with 483 votes and Reyes with 458, the precise minimum needed. Austin-Mahle and Joyner won on the second clergy ballot, with 478 and 451 votes, respectively (448 needed). Lawrence won on the fourth ballot, with 571 votes (469 needed).


Richard Bentley, a clergyman in the California-Pacific Conference, was instrumental in developing the winning progressive slate. He was one of three men who called together contacts from annual conferences in each of five U.S. jurisdictions to give input on candidates who progressives affirmed will be, in their terms, "fair and balanced." Consensus developed based on theological perspectives and existing base support that could be augmented. Dale Weatherspoon, a California-Nevada delegate, rallied base support for Brown. The slate was printed and distributed to nearly every annual conference delegation here.


Angela Brown is an Assistant District Attorney in San Francisco, a California State Bar Member, California Supreme Court Bar Member, and member of the U.S. District Court of Appeals Bar, 9th Circuit. She is a retired Commander in the United States Navy Reserve (1985-2007).


Brown was a General and Jurisdictional Conference Delegate in 2000 and has served as a Certified Lay Speaker (1982-2002), Lay Leader for the Golden Gate District (1998-2002), Chair of the Golden Gate District Committee on Superintendency (2003-2007), and member of the Committee of Superintendency for the California-Nevada Annual Conference (2004-2007).


Since 2000 she has served on the Western Jurisdictional Appeals Committee. Brown has been a Conference Lay Minister since 2002 – assigned to Jones Memorial UMC, San Francisco, for the past two years – and has served as Church Council Chair at Jones Memorial since 2003.