The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings served as president of the House of Deputies from 2012-2022. She was the first ordained woman to hold the position.

As president, Jennings committed to fostering a new generation of leaders in the Episcopal Church and encouraging the church’s work for justice through the actions of General Convention and the work of Episcopalians throughout the church. She worked closely with the elected and appointed leaders who served the church between conventions, with more than 850 members of the House of Deputies, and with the presiding bishop and other church leaders.

Jennings, ordained in 1979, was a ten-time deputy from the Diocese of Ohio. She was also the Episcopal Church’s clergy representative to the Anglican Consultative Council in 2012 and 2016. She previously served for 17 years as canon to the ordinary in the Diocese of Ohio and for nine years as associate director of CREDO Institute Inc., a church wellness program.

Prior to serving as president, Jennings served on the Executive Council of the Episcopal Church from 2006-2012 and held many elected and appointed leadership positions, including chairing the General Convention legislative committees on Structure, World Mission, Communications, and Canons. She was a founding steering committee member of the Chicago Consultation, which supports the full inclusion of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Christians.

Jennings is a graduate of Colgate University and Episcopal Divinity School and has received honorary doctorates from both institutions, as well as from Church Divinity School of the Pacific. She lives in Sagamore Hills, Ohio (outside Cleveland) with her husband, Albert, who has been a parish priest for 46 years. They have been married for those same 46 years. Their son, Sam, lives nearby and is a sound engineer. Their beloved daughter, Lee, died in 2010.

Bonnie Anderson



Bonnie Anderson served as president of the House of Deputies from 2006-2012.

Anderson is known in the Episcopal Church as a champion for the ministry of the laity, an advocate for marginalized people, a preacher who speaks to the people in the pew, and a skilled community organizer. She presided over the 800+ members of the House of Deputies as a fair-minded, skilled parliamentarian, grounded in love for Christ Jesus.

Her advocacy for the environment and the people most directly affected by environmental degradation earned her a gubernatorial appointment in her home state to the Michigan Environmental Review Board. To improve the quality of a badly polluted river, she mobilized 400 volunteers from more than 40 counties for a yearly clean up and continued water quality monitoring.

Prior to her election, Anderson served as vice president of the HOD; chair of the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget and Finance; an Executive Council member; and an Executive Council elected representative to The Episcopal Church Investment Committee. In her home Diocese of Michigan, she has held many positions including Canon to the Ordinary, President of the Standing Committee, and Chair of Constitution and Canons.

Anderson is an author of articles, writer and preacher of sermons and homilies and an adjunct lecturer at the University of Michigan. She has been awarded honorary Doctor of Divinity degrees from the Episcopal Divinity School and the University of the South, Sewanee, and honorary Doctor of Canon Law degrees from Seabury-Western Theological Seminary and General Theological Seminary.



dThe Very Rev. George L. W. Werner served for six years as the 31st president of the House of Deputies. He was elected at General Convention in 2000 in Denver and re-elected in 2003 in Minneapolis. From 1994 to 2000, he served as vice-president under President Dr. Pamela Chinnis. He served eight terms as a deputy and as deputation chair from the Diocese of Pittsburgh.

According to a 2006 story by Episcopal News Service, Werner “was especially proud of bringing more young people into the workings of General Convention.”

“I was anxious to appoint youth to positions at the table,” he said. “We had talked about that ever since I have been in the church.”

From 1979 to 2000, Werner was dean of Trinity Cathedral in Pittsburgh. He had previously served congregations in Connecticut and New Hampshire. He holds a master of divinity degree from Berkeley Divinity School, now known as Berkeley Divinity School at Yale. A native of New York City, Werner lived in suburban Pittsburgh and served as a trustee of the Church Pension Fund.



The Very Rev. David B. Collins, dean emeritus of the Cathedral of St. Philip in Atlanta, served as president of the House of Deputies from 1985-1991. He served as vice president of the House from 1979 until his election as president.

According to an Episcopal News Service story on the occasion of his election, “Collins played a highly visible and much-applauded role in the tumultuous 1976 convention, when the committee he chaired handled the issue of women’s ordination. He has served on the Presiding Bishop’s Advisory Committee on Evangelism and Renewal, the Church Deployment Board and the Church Pension Fund Board of Trustees.”

Collins is a graduate of the University of the South. He has served parishes in Arkansas and was chaplain at his alma mater from 1953-1966. He was dean of St. Philip’s from 1966-1984. He died on December 29, 2016 at the age of 94.