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JFON-Justice for Our Neighbors
At Iowa Justice for Our Neighbors (JFON), we work on behalf of the Iowa Annual Conference United Methodist Churches to transform the lives of immigrant and refugee families with high quality immigration legal services that are free to our low income clients in the tradition of UMCOR, the agency which started JFON here in Iowa 17 years ago. 

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"Something Bigger Than Ourselves" - A Statement from the Appointive Cabinet

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Johnson, Plambeck named directors

March 20, 2018

In a move to align resources and talent in the Iowa Annual Conference, Bishop Laurie Haller has appointed Rev. Dr. Jaye Johnson as the Director of Congregational Excellence, and Rev. Dr. Lanette Plambeck as the Director for Clergy and Leadership Excellence.
Johnson, the South Central District Field Outreach Minister since 2013, has effectively served congregations in Iowa through the Healthy Church Initiative (HCI).
“I can’t wait to work collaborative with the other directors, the cabinet, and our hundreds of already excellent congregations to discover God’s dream for the next phase of our journey as a conference,” Johnson said. “I will forever be deeply grateful to Rev. Paul Smith, who I have come to trust and admire as a leader with a heart of gold, and to the people of the South Central District who have encouraged me, challenged me, and loved me as their Field Outreach Minster. I look forward to knowing and loving the rest of the annual conference.”
His experience in the District has tended a passion for helping churches become the faith communities the Iowa Conference needs.
“Jaye is a lead consultant for HCI and is an Affiliate Professor of Church Leadership at the University of Dubuque, where he is currently leading a Doctor of Ministry Cohort,” Bishop Laurie said. “His areas of specialty include staff development, DISC Profile, single board governance, leadership covenants, and church size-transition. Jaye’s passion for creating world transforming communities of faith by equipping congregations for fruitful ministry will enhance the Iowa Annual Conference’s ability to be difference makers around the world.”
Plambeck is currently serving as Lead Pastor of Broadway U.M. Church in Council Bluffs. She has a long history of fruitful and innovative ministry, which Bishop Laurie says will play into her new role as Director for Clergy and Leadership Excellence.
“At the core of Lanette’s ministry is her conviction that the effectiveness of a congregation’s ability to connect with, witness to, and serve their community is directly related to their level of lay and clergy leadership development,” Bishop Laurie said. “As a ministry coach and strategic thinker, Lanette has a unique ability to develop leaders who are equipped to guide congregations in fulfilling their mission and strategic priorities.”
With twenty years of ministry experience, Plambeck has come to understand the level of leadership effectiveness needed in the church.
“I am certain that innovative, strategic leadership development can benefit individuals or groups to hone their ministry and leadership skills and bring new disciples to Christ,” Plambeck said. “The United Methodist Church in Iowa needs leaders in worshipping communities to be hope for the world; I believe this can be achieved more effectively as we align our leadership processes and resources to the Mission, Vision, Strategic Priorities and Wildly Important Goal of the Iowa Conference.”
Both Plambeck and Johnson will begin their new roles on July 1, 2018. They will be joining Rev. Bill Poland, Director of New Communities of Faith, in formulating a strategy for clergy and congregational excellence that aligns with the new mission, vision,  "wildly important goal", and strategic priorities.