VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 10/3/18)—The Rochester Genesee Region of American Baptist Churches called the Rev. Dr. Sandra L. DeMott Hasenauer to serve as its next Executive Minister at a meeting of the region’s Board of Directors on Saturday, September 22. Hasenauer will begin her service in this position on November 5.
“We are so blessed to be welcoming someone like Sandy as our new Executive Minister. Her skills and experience will help lead our diverse region to the next level on so many different fronts,” said Beth Short, president of the Rochester Genesee Region. “We have had outstanding leadership in the past as our region has grown to include many non-geographic churches that wanted to be in community with our region. Sandy will build on that so we can truly develop leaders throughout our region who are transforming lives. She appreciates the wide variety of views and ministries within our region and sees that diversity as an asset that can help strengthen all of our churches and programs. Sandy embraces our region’s values of respect, Godly justice and reconciliation and we can’t wait to be the beneficiaries of her many gifts.”
“Rev. Hasenauer brings an incredibly strong tool kit of organizational development resources and amazing leadership and facilitation skills. With her knowledge of the geography, culture, and people associated with the region, I am expecting to see an incredible start to her ministry and to see the ministry results continue for years to come!” said Rev. Dr. C. Jeff Woods, acting general secretary, American Baptist Churches USA.
“The search committee is thankful that the region too recognized the talents and gifts that Rev. Dr. Sandra Hasenauer has and will now share with the region. Several attendees of the Delegates meeting shared that Rev. Alan Newton provided tremendous leadership in bringing the region to its current state, and under Sandra’s leadership we are poised to enter the future with love and boldness,” said Karen Podsiadly, Search Committee Chair.
Hasenauer has served as the associate executive director of American Baptist Women’s Ministries (ABWM), American Baptist Churches USA, since 2002. She was ordained at the First Baptist Church of Macedon, NY in 1993 and served as associate pastor and interim minister at several churches prior to joining the national staff for ABWM.
She received a Doctor of Ministry in Transformational Leadership degree from Boston University School of Theology in May 2018, with a focus on the practical implications in an organization of truly embracing a core vision of beloved community. She received her M.Div. from Colgate Rochester Divinity School/Bexley Hall/Crozer Theological Seminary in 1993.
Hasenauer has a strong sense of social justice and a desire to stand with the marginalized. She has been in volunteer service with the refugee community and engaged in advocacy for immigration reform and refugee policies at national and international levels as part of American Baptist delegations. She has been involved in refugee resettlement work, particularly with refugees from Burma (Myanmar) and Somalia, and sits on the Burma Refugee Commission of American Baptist Churches USA.
Additionally, she represented AB Women’s Ministries on the ABCUSA Immigration Task Force and has spearheaded efforts in AB Women’s Ministries to advocate on behalf of immigration reform. She created several Baptist-Muslim dialogue events in AB Women’s Ministries, bringing American Baptist clergy women into dialogue with Muslim women to discuss shared stories and different perspectives. Her ministry has also included years of experience in ministry with youth and with young adults.
Sandy has been married to Chris Hasenauer for 31 years, and has two young adult children (Ben and Evann).
Hasenauer considers her ministry to have been shaped significantly by her parents, Dr. Donald and Shirley DeMott, her home church, Lake Avenue Baptist Church in Rochester, NY, and her home region in ABCUSA, the Rochester/Genesee Region. These influences have caused her to live by Micah 6:8 (do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with her God), and Ephesians 3:20, in which God’s power can do abundantly more than all we can ask or imagine.