Alison will bring the benefit of her considerable experience as a faith leader deeply engaged in the wider world to the Office of the President. She has been elected by her interfaith colleagues to serve as their leader and representative. Alison is a frequent speaker at interfaith services and community events. She is a trusted leader in times of adversity and conflict by UUs, people of all faiths, and people who claim no faith at all. She is known for her willingness to speak out against injustice and her dedication to creating community solutions that serve the common good.
Morris County, where she lives, is a conservative region of New Jersey. Alison leads and partners with the members of her congregation to bring the healing values of our liberal religious perspective to the public square. For example, when Alison arrived in Morristown in 2005 tensions were rising around the treatment of immigrants and the community was at an impasse. She co-chaired an interfaith and non-profit coalition, including an Immigrant Rights collective, to find a way forward. They fought against deputizing police officers as immigration officers and founded Pathways to Work.
Alison has served as an ally and advocate for numerous pressing issues of the day. She has led and participated in public witness, legislative advocacy, and community organizing for immigrant rights, marriage equality, ending gun violence, criminal justice reform and anti-racism. Different Muslim communities in the region surrounding her congregation have faced discrimination, including two different towns voting down proposals for building Islamic Centers. Alison has used her influence and leadership to create opportunities for dialogue, greater understanding, and advocacy to support Muslim communities fully participating in the the life of the wider community.
Alison is a strategic thinker around community organizations and change. She was invited to join the leadership of United Way of Morris County as part of a team looking at how to structure the organization with greater accountability to the diverse populations they serve. They used principles of anti-racism, anti-oppression, and multiculturalism to guide their work.
Later she was asked to serve as a founding board member of a merger between six area United Ways and was involved in leadership as the organization shifted towards Policy Governance and aligned its mission, vision and strategy to effectively address the consequences of income inequality.
SELECTED COMMUNITY AND JUSTICE BUILDING EXPERIENCE
United Way of Northern New Jersey (UWNNJ)
- Board of Trustees, United Way of Northern NJ, 2010 – Present
Work with CEO and Senior Staff to support mission of community impact in the areas of Income, Health and Education.
Address needs of the recent merger of five area United Ways and the shift to Policy Governance.
- Board Development Committee, 2013 – Present
- Advisory Council of Morris County’s United Way, 2006 – 2010
- Inclusion Committee of Morris County, 2006 – 2010
Morris Area Interfaith Clergy Council
- Council Member, 2005 – Present
- Co-President, 2007 – 2009
- Vice President, 2006 – 2007
- Racial Justice Task Force, 2015 – Present
- Frequent Speaking Role in Interfaith Worship, 2005 – Present
- Delivered MLK Day Keynote Address, 2007
- Workshop Leader and Panelist at Community Events:
Spirituality and Addiction, Partnerships between Faith Communities and Non-Profits, organizing around LGBTQ rights, Reproductive Rights, Women’s Leadership, Immigration Rights, Economic Justice, Reducing Gun Violence, Micro-Credit and Community Development.
Immigrant Rights Coalition & Pathways to Work
- Steering Committee Member, 2006 – 2011
- Co-Chair, 2007 – 2009
UU Legislative Ministry of New Jersey (UULMNJ)
- Board Member, 2013 – Present
- President of the UULMNJ’s Public Policy Network, 2013 – Present
- Keynote Speaker, Fall Conference, 2008
Morris Area Committee to Reduce Gun Violence, 2012 – 2014
NYU/Bellevue Hospital AIDS Program, Internship, New York, N.Y., 6/1996 – 7/1997
NYC Dept. of Health accredited HIV pre- and post-testing counselor. Helped coordinate opening of off-site OB/GYN clinic. Facilitated preparations for inspection by Joint Committee on Hospital Accreditation. Performed administrative tasks. Interpreter for French speaking patients in all hospital departments.
AWARDS AND RECOGNITION FOR COMMUNITY WORK
- Clergy Honoree chosen by Neighborhood House for justice work with immigrants, 2011
- Organization Honoree chosen by Neighborhood House for justice work with immigrants, 2013
- Gay Activist Alliance of Morris County Award, 2012