June Volunteer of the Month – Jake Ryder

Jake Ryder does not remember a time growing up when he wasn’t attending UUCSS.  Kids RE, OWL, Coming of Age and YRUU were all tucked away before starting at Rochester Institute of Technology.  While pursuing degrees in networking and cyber security he developed a real interest in criminal justice, particularly concerning the unequal treatment of minority groups.  When he returned to the area, that interest coalesced around our Racial Justice Task Force where he has become a contributor.  We’re glad he found us again because Jake’s presence became critical to our ability to become an online church.

A few weeks before the pandemic lockdown took hold, Jake started helping our tech team.  In the weeks following the lockdown he worked with us first with Zoom and then in collaboration with Cedar Lane UUC to manage our services through YouTube.  In addition to ironing out all the technical details, Jake constructs our weekly services from lots of contributors.  When asked what he finds most rewarding it was “the feeling at the end of the day that I accomplished something worthwhile.”   The worthwhile part is apparent to all of us.  When asked about what he’d like to say to the congregation, it was first to thank the congregation for the opportunity to serve and “there’s a lot of room on the tech team for volunteers.”  We’re very lucky to have Jake back with us.