On July 19, Sarah Gillooly began their term as the general secretary of Baltimore Yearly Meeting (BYM).
Gillooly, who uses they/them pronouns, has 15 years of previous nonprofit management experience, including roles with Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood. Gillooly is a member of Adelphi (Md.) Meeting, where they have served on Nominating and Pastoral Care Committees. Gillooly is also a student at Earlham School of Religion where they are pursuing a master of divinity degree.
“The truth of who we are continues to be revealed in the midst of BYM’s 350th anniversary year,” says Gillooly. “We face the challenges of a world in turmoil and a Society in the midst of major demographic shifts. Friends of Color are calling us all to urgent action to uproot the original American sins of racism and White supremacy, and Young Friends increasingly reflect both the theological and gender diversity of millennials and Gen Z. These prophetic cries will require Friends to lean into discomfort as we build God’s ‘kin-dom’ on Earth.”
Gillooly succeeds Wayne Finegar, who had been serving as interim general secretary since the resignation of Ned Stowe in July 2020.
The General Secretary Search Committee’s recommendation of Gillooly was approved at a May 18 called interim meeting. The search committee noted that it was particularly impressed with Gillooly’s experience, training, and commitment to antiracism and the implementation of antiracist practices in staff supervision and program management.
Baltimore Yearly Meeting, started in 1672, includes most of Virginia, the portion of Maryland west of the Chesapeake Bay, central Pennsylvania, the District of Columbia, and parts of West Virginia. It has about 4,740 members, organized into 40 established monthly meetings plus 13 preparative meetings and worship groups.