The UUMN was formed at a meeting during the 1982 General Assembly. A continental mailing invited broader membership. In 1983 the UUMN Newsletter, Notes, began publication and the first summer conference was held in Boston. In 2012, an electronic newsblast, GraceNotes began publication.
An elected Board of Trustees govern the UUMN. Board members are drawn from across the continent and serve staggered three year terms.
The UUMN took an active role in the development of the UUA hymnbook, Singing the Living Tradition, and the hymnal supplement, Singing the Journey. UUMN members served on both task forces. The Network provided support in raising development funds, collecting and evaluating material, and helping to introduce the new book to congregations and their leaders.
An Administrative Office was created in 1995 for the purposes of coordinating Network activities, providing communication among members and making contact with UUMN officers and liaison personnel. UUMN Services contains databases and published materials of the Network and processes membership mailings and is staffed by the Executive Administrator.
In 2000 the UUMN organized the first UU Children’s Choir in conjunction with the UUA General Assembly. UU children from the US and Canada come together for five days where they prepare and present music for GA attendees. In 2013 the fifth UU Children's Choir was held in conjunction with the UUMN summer conference in Dallas.
A Music Leaders Certification (MLC) program for UU musicians was established in 2006 with 10 candidates. The MLC is administered by the Music Leadership Certification Committee of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) in collaboration with the Unitarian Universalist Musicians Network (UUMN).
The UUMN is an international organization which boasts a membership of approximately 580 from North America, Europe and Asia.
UUMN Conferences and Hosts
1983 – Boston, MA – Joyce Gilbert, Ken Orton, Leo Collins
1984 – St. Paul, MN – Ken Ford
1985 – Portland, OR – Bob Winkley, Mark Slegers
1986 – Madison, WI – Bob Winkley, Ellsworth Snyder
1987 – Washington DC – Betsy Jo Angebranndt, Niki Davis
1988 – San Diego, CA – Ken Herman
1989 – Toronto, CAN – Laurie Frasier, Jacqui Alkin
1990 – Milwaukee, WI – Bob Simiele, Christian Rich
1991 – Baltimore, MD – James Huston
1992 – San Francisco, CA – Edwin Barlow, Eric Howe
1993 – Rochester, NY - Joyce Gilbert, Ed Schell
1994 –The Mountain, Highlands, NC - Shelley Denham
1995 – Evanston, Ill. - Bart Bradfield, John Giles
1996 – Houston, TX - Dean Dalton, Kay Dunn
1997 – Santa Monica, CA – Nicole Baker
1998 – Providence, RI - Helene Gersuny, Lee Ridgway
1999 – Bloomfield Hills, MI, Sue/Dan Boyce, Barbara Woolf
2000 – San Diego, CA - Ken Herman
2001 – The Mountain - Shelley Denham
2002 – Vancouver, BC - Joyce Poley
2003 – San Antonio, TX - Bill Ross
2004 – Arlington, VA – Bob Griffith, Bea Ann Phillips
2005 – Denver, CO - Keith Arnold, Marlys Brinkman
2006 – St. Paul, MN – Sonja Johnston, Ruth Palmer
2007 – Clearwater, FL – Frank Wells
2008 – Boston, MA (25th Anniversary): Emma Jean Moulton, Mary Neumann, Beth Norton, Eleanor Toth
2009 – Portland, OR: Mark Slegers
2010 – Madison, WI: Dan Broner, Linda Warren - Conference Planning Committee Chair
2011 – Arlington, VA: Bob Griffith, Bea Ann Phillips; John Hubert - CPC Chair
2012 – Tulsa, OK: Rick Fortner, Susan Swatek; John Hubert - CPC Chair
2013– Dallas, TX: Don Krehbiel; Patrick Scofield - CPC Chair
2014 - San Diego, CA: Ken Herman; Patrick Scofield - CPC Chair
2015 - Boston, MA: Patrick Scofield - CPC Chair
Past Presidents of UUMN
1985 – Leo Collins
1987 – David Jackson
1989 – Ken Herman
1991 – Niki Davis
1993 – Ed Schell
1995 – Eric Howe/ Bob Simiele
1997 – Scott Ward/ Bill Belan
1999 – Joyce Gilbert
2002 – Ken Herman
2005 – Elizabeth Norton
2008 – Keith Arnold
2011 – Sarah Dan Jones
2014 - Tim Anderson
2017 – Shawn McCann
left to right: Mark Slegers, Helene Gersuny, Betsy Jo Angebranndt,
Barb Wagner, Ed Schell, Joyce Gilbert, Ken Herman, Barbara Woolf, Sarah Albright
The Mission of the Unitarian Universalist Musicians Network is to nurture, educate, and inspire UU music leaders to create dynamic and transformative music ministries and to model and promote excellence in shared ministry. The members of UUMN covenant to support and motivate one another in joyous and loving community.