3 September 2017
Nick Price is standing to be the next chair of the Civil Service Rainbow Alliance. In this post, he explains what kind of leader he thinks he would be.
I was thinking about what to write over the weekend and how to sell myself to a group of people most of whom I have never met. I then wondered about whether a picture would paint a thousand words or maybe 2 would save writing any at all; but then thought: seriously, me waving a flag or drinking with a minister only indicates that I’m a social butterfly and not the “stay-at-home” type, so is that really helpful?
Last time it was all about my career – this time it’s a bit of a curve ball – my faith journey. I had been an active Christian since the age of 14, but whilst I was working in Aldershot, I decided to be more open with my Church and they rejected me totally – I was asked to leave – turning my back on the Church and God for about 10 years.
After a life-changing experience, I began to re-engage with God and started to re-find my faith. It took time, but eventually I found a church that cared about my relationship with God and not what happened in my bedroom. So twenty years on, I am now where I want to be spiritually and in career terms; somewhere I never thought I could hope to achieve. So as well as my day job and LGBT work, I am also an active member of the Church of England – I review Priests in Edmonton on behalf of the Bishop (a bit like annual staff reporting), I am a Warden, a Eucharistic Minister and one of the leaders of adult learning in my Parish in Camden.
All that said, reconciling that my partner’s parents don’t know I exist after 6 years because he is a second generation South Asian Hindu still jars on occasion, but I also recognise this is his issue to solve with my support, not mine to railroad through.
So, it’s not all been plain sailing, I admit, and there have been dark times – and I still find it harder to come out as a Christian than I ever do to say that I’m gay, but my faith has not held me back and I honestly do not believe my sexuality has either; the only one thing that has ever held me back is me – and my faith in me!
And why do you need to know all this? Well for me leadership is all about leading from the front, basing decisions not just on current thinking, but also prior personal knowledge and life experience. Working up through the grades and having a faith to supporting me has made me an effective leader.