The United Oromo Evangelical Churches (UOEC) held its 13th annual council meeting July 28 – 30, 2010 in Portland, Oregon and elected The Rev. Dr. Gemechu Olana to be the president of the union. Rev. Gemechu Olana was a graduate of Mekane Yesus Theological Seminary in Ethiopia and after his graduation he was selected to teach in the same seminary because of his excellent academic standing. He then moved to Germany where he successfully completed his PhD in Contextual Theology studies. Rev. Gemechu is currently serving as pastor for the Oromo church in Los Angeles.
The council has also elected two other officers; Melese Gutema, secretary and Dr. Belay Biratu, treasurer. Mr. Melese Gutema was a public servant at the minister level in the State of Oromia until he left the country under political pressure about six years ago. He is currently serving on the council of the Oromo church in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. He is also board member of Canadian chapter of the UOEC.
Dr. Belay Biratu is a PhD in the field of accounting and currently working for the State Farm Insurance Corporation in Oakland, California. Dr. Belay is a council member and treasurer of the Oromo Church in the Bay Area.
The UOEC council expressed its deepest appreciation to the former president the Rev. Gemechis Desta Buba, Secretary Tamirat Atomsa and Addise Botcho, treasure; for their outstanding service to the UOEC. The Rev. Gemechis Buba served the organization for three terms as a president. In his visionary leadership and unparalleled commitment of service the Oromo church around the world recorded a remarkable growth over the past six years and was exposed to national and international stages.
The council has also undertaken other crucial issues of the organization in this meeting; such as, the ELCA and basic Christian teachings, the UOEC future annual conferences and the UOEC budget were among other items in the agenda.