Resignations From World Vision Board Begin

April 3, 2014       The NonProfit Times      

World Vision’s reversal regarding recognizing same-sex marriage of employees claimed its first casualty. Board member Jacquelline Fuller, who is director of corporate giving at Google, has resigned from the evangelical Christian relief agency’s board, disagreeing with the decision to exclude gay employees who marry.

Fuller, who is director of corporate giving at Google, was targeted by Faithful America along with her Google colleague, John Park, a senior project manager. The online community of “Christian social-justice activists” had recently launched an online petition urging the two to resign from the 16-member board. The petition had collected nearly 17,000 signatures as of this afternoon.

World Vision U.S. President Rich Stearns issued a statement on behalf of the board thanking Fuller for her contributions and service. “The board has benefited from her perspective and her passion to serve the poor. We wish her well as she continues to address global issues of poverty and justice.”

“In addition to support from churches, World Vision actively courts support of major corporations who want to curry favor with Christian consumers. Google claims to support marriage equality, so now that World Vision is putting anti-gay politics ahead of serving poor and hungry people, Google needs to find new Christian partners who don’t discriminate,” according to the petition.

World Vision U.S., based in Federal Way, Wash., last week announced that it would recognize same-sex marriages of employees, only to backtrack two days later after thousands of supporters threatened to cancel their child sponsorships.

In the days that followed, World Vision Canada and World Vision U.K. were among those related entities to issue statements clarifying that they are separate entities with policies that follow provincial employment laws prohibiting discrimination and were not affected by the World Vision U.S. decision. The World Vision International Partnership operates in 97 countries.