As I gaze out of my study window at the bright spring birds and budding trees, I am at peace with and excited about the changes unfolding at NCIPL. As some of you already know, after two years as paid staff, I made the transition to volunteer status on January 1, 2013. For the first quarter of this year, I retained the title of Co-Director with my inspirational and able partner, Susannah Tuttle, whom I supported and witnessed as she enthusiastically and creatively assumed primary leadership of our organization and mission. It is now time to make the next transition by announcing that I am stepping away from the Co-Director role into a new advisory role as Susannah becomes the sole Director of North Carolina Interfaith Power & Light.
My time as part-time director and then as co-director of NCIPL has been rich with learning, inspiration, challenge and mostly the joy of new relationships. I have been privileged to learn from people of many different denominations and faiths exactly what it means to love God and God’s creation through selfless service and passionate devotion. It has been an amazing time, but now it is time for me to return to my roots in clinical medicine and environmental public health. As NCIPL has grown and changed, it has become very clear that it will flourish best with a leader who can devote all her energies, without competition or distraction, to the mission of the organization. Susannah is that person, and NCIPL is very lucky to have her. I will continue to support the work and mission of NCIPL and the community of faithful creation care champions through my time, talent and treasures as volunteer Senior Advisor, and specifically will always be available to the Director 24/6 (remembering the Sabbath) if she has a need.
I want to take this opportunity to thank the many people, too many to name, who have made the past two years such a spiritually vibrant and personally rich time for me. The staff, steering committee and volunteers of NCIPL and the staff of the NC Council of Churches top the list, but there are scores of amazing volunteers in congregations and environmental organizations across the state who have touched my life and my spirit, stimulated deepening personal growth, and shepherded me along my own faith journey. I thank you all deeply for the generosity of your welcome and the passion of your work. It has been an honor to serve for a while in a leadership capacity, and now I joyfully re-engage as a worker bee as we all continue to strive for a just, sustainable and spiritually rich world.
Please join me in congratulating and thanking Susannah for assuming leadership of this unique organization, the only statewide organization that works directly with faith communities on positive, hope-filled responses to climate change. We all can do our part to co-create a better future, a blessed community, and Susannah will help us coordinate our efforts with joy and faith.
–Kathy Shea, NCIPL Senior Advisor