First Unitarian Society of Ithaca, NY

Congregational Administrator Job Description

Reports to: Minister

Status: Exempt; 0.8 Full-Time Equivalent (35 hours per week).

Compensation and Benefits: Salary is based upon Unitarian Universalist Association fair compensation guidelines commensurate with experience. Healthcare, four weeks vacation/personal time.


The First Unitarian Society of Ithaca is a mid-size Unitarian Universalist congregation with about 320 adult members and 75 children and youth. The Congregational Administrator supports the mission and vision of FUSIT by ensuring the smooth operation of the office and programs of the church, and spearheading the financial, dara, and facilities management of the congregation. They work closely with the staff team and a broad range of lay leadership. The Congregational Administrator must demonstrate integrity, professionalism, and fiduciary responsibility and be able to operate with great flexibility.


  • Serve as the payroll administrator; maintain time sheets and hours for 1099 employees; communicate with the church’s payroll agency and distribute payroll.
  • Oversee the church’s Human Resources program, including monitoring of employee salaries and benefits and periodic review and revision of the Employee Handbook.
  • Manages and administers the employee benefits program.
  • Deposit revenue (such as donations, fees, event payments, pledges, etc.); communicate with pledgers about their pledge fulfillment.
  • Manage the rental program: give information to prospective renters, prepare reservation agreements, collect fees, align renter calendar to avoid conflict with church space needs. 
  • Assist with annual stewardship campaign, other fundraising efforts, and membership growth strategies.
  • Organize and maintain storage of all the church’s financial records and other records of enduring value, such as meeting minutes, personnel files, annual reports, and other documents. 
  • Collaborate with Treasurer and Bookkeeper to maintain these records, and supervise Bookkeeper.
  • Serve as the primary administrator for the church database (currently Breeze), work with other staff members to keep congregants’ information updated.
  • Maintain records of church attendance, which is provided by lay leadership.
  • Maintain the church calendar, coordinate priorities and negotiate successful solutions in time of space crunches; communicate with staff and lay leaders about church meetings and major events. 
  • Serve as a communications hub for congregants and those outside the church, directing inquiries to the appropriate person or team. 
  • Responsible for the creation, printing, and distribution of the weekly announce email and weekly order of service in collaboration with the staff team and lay leaders. 
  • Responsible for the accuracy and timeliness of the church website as a whole, and make updates  as needed.


  • Participate in staff meetings (traditionally Tuesdays); and other meetings as appropriate.
  • Collaborate effectively with the minister and other staff in their work.
  • Maintain reliable presence in the church building during weekday business hours for congregants, service calls, and vendors. 


  • Mission Ownership: Demonstrates understanding and full support of the mission, vision, values and beliefs of the congregation; can demonstrate those values to others; consistently behaves in a manner congruent with the mission, vision, values and beliefs. 
  • Integrity and Trust: Is seen as trustworthy by others; practices direct, honest and transparent communication; keeps confidences; admits mistakes; doesn’t operate with hidden agendas; responds to situations with constancy and reliability.
  • Interpersonal Skills: Establishes good working relationships with all others who are relevant to the completion of work; works well with people at all levels of the congregation; builds appropriate rapport; considers the impact of their actions on others; uses diplomacy and tact; is approachable; avoids communication triangles.
  • Attention to Detail: Consistently attends to the many small pieces which must be assembled into an organized whole; follows up on missing or out of balance items; resolves unanswered questions needed to address a problem; keeps the larger picture in mind while tending to the smallest of details.
  • Organizational Knowledge: Knowledgeable about how congregational communication, decision making and leadership works; knows how to get things done through formal and informal decision making channels; can maneuver through charged political situations effectively and quietly; anticipates organizational barriers are and plans his/her approach accordingly.
  • Technical Expertise: Acquires and demonstrates the technical skills required to proficiently execute the essential functions of the job; understands which skills are lacking and seeks to develop those skills; continually works toward the mastery of technical proficiency.
  • Process Management: Good at figuring out the processes necessary to get things done; knows how to organize people and activities; understand how to separate and combine tasks info efficient work flow; knows what to measure and how to measure it; can see opportunities for synergy and integration; can simplify complex processes and create policy for repetitive processes. 


  • Bachelor’s Degree preferred
  • 3 years office management or equivalent experience
  • Confident with technology and enthusiastic about learning new technology skills, including financial software, database and information management tools such as MailChimp, WordPress, Breeze, and Google G-Suite
  • Familiarity with religious institution environment
  • Demonstrated ability to work with minimal supervision
  • Supervisory experience preferred
  • Successful completion of criminal and financial background check.


  • Able to move freely throughout church buildings
  • Able to independently do word processing and other computer applications
  • Ability to lift and move 50 pounds