Glossary: twelve-year rule
The regulation approved by the 1988 General Conference that no elected general program staff person can hold the same position for more than twelve years. Years of service prior to January 1, 1989, are not counted. In the general program agencies, the elected staff includes all persons with the rank or title of general secretary, deputy general secretary, associate general secretary, and assistant general secretary.
Source: A Dictionary for United Methodists, Alan K. Waltz, Copyright 1991, Abingdon Press. Used by Permission.