Home » Meet the Team

We're All Interfaith Leaders.

IFYC works with leaders across the campus environment — faculty, staff, administrators, and students. We offer the tools, guidance, opportunities, and networks needed to bring interfaith engagement into their campuses, classrooms, research, and lives. Meet the team below and check out the careers page if you're interested in joining us.

Don Abram

Program Manager

Don Abram, Program Manager, cultivates and stewards relationships with emerging IFYC partners across various spheres. He has earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Pomona College ('16) and a Master of Divinity degree from Harvard Divinity School...

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Don Abram, Program Manager, cultivates and stewards relationships with emerging IFYC partners across various spheres. He has earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Pomona College ('16) and a Master of Divinity degree from Harvard Divinity School ('19), both on full-tuition scholarship. Recently, he has worked as a qualitative researcher with Stanford University’s Poverty and Inequality Center and as an organizer with the Jaime Harrison for Senate campaign. At IFYC, Don manages the implementation of grantee programs and supports developing partnerships. Don began preaching at the age of 14 and his commitment to advancing the social good through interfaith cooperation has only grown. Outside of his professional life, Don enjoys traveling abroad and creating new memories with those whom he loves.

Tony Banout

Senior Vice President

Raised in an immigrant household in New York, where he was steeped in the Coptic Orthodox Church and absorbed both Roman Catholic and Islamic influences, Tony describes the American experiment of e pluribus unum as his lifelong vocation, which...

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Raised in an immigrant household in New York, where he was steeped in the Coptic Orthodox Church and absorbed both Roman Catholic and Islamic influences, Tony describes the American experiment of e pluribus unum as his lifelong vocation, which he has approached civically, academically, professionally, and artistically. Through publications and presentations, Tony contributes regularly to the national conversation about the role of interfaith cooperation in a religiously diverse democracy, often touching on philanthropy and higher education. He holds a PhD from the University of Chicago, where he studied at the Divinity School and was a Martin Marty Center and Provost fellow. A proud father of three, Tony loves being a dad to Lucas, Nina, and Leo. In his spare time, he enjoys both making and listening to music, and can often be found strumming and fingerpicking a guitar.

Katie Bringman Baxter

Vice President of Program Strategy

Both her religious convictions and her work with diverse student populations motivate Katie to strive for a world in which people of different backgrounds can live, work, and build community together. She oversees IFYC’s higher education...

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Both her religious convictions and her work with diverse student populations motivate Katie to strive for a world in which people of different backgrounds can live, work, and build community together. She oversees IFYC’s higher education program strategy ensuring alignment, integration, and evaluation across the organization’s projects. Along with senior program staff, Katie coordinates relationships with higher education leaders, associations, and funders, enabling IFYC’s partnerships with colleges and universities to turn religious diversity into a positive force in our society. Katie has been published in the Journal of College and Character and Liberal Education, and presents regularly to audiences focused on higher education. Her interest in religion and her professional background in higher education are reflected in her MA in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University and her BA in religion from Wittenberg University. Outside of work, Katie enjoys playing in the park with her two small children and serving in leadership roles at her Lutheran church.

Janett I. Cordovés

Director of Higher Education Partnerships

Janett works with professionals across the country to design and implement innovative learning strategies through digital learning platforms and education technology and is responsible for developing and leading key aspects of strategic...

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Janett works with professionals across the country to design and implement innovative learning strategies through digital learning platforms and education technology and is responsible for developing and leading key aspects of strategic planning initiatives within higher education, including The Institute on Teaching and Learning for Campus-wide Interfaith Excellence in partnership with The Association of American Colleges and Universities. Prior to joining IFYC, Janett worked in academia for over a decade, elevating the importance of engaging worldview identity and creating religious policies. Janett holds an EdD in Ethical Leadership, an MS in Higher Education, and a BA in Applied Mathematics. Her research interests include first-generation college students, #digitalfaith, leadership development, and online pedagogy. Janett serves as the Associate Editor for the Journal of College and Character and is an active member of NASPA, Campus Compact, LeaderShape, and NODA.

Rev. Frederick A. Davie

Senior Advisor for Racial Equity

Reverend Frederick A. Davie, Senior Advisor for Racial Equity, executes IFYC programming with a primary focus on the intersection of race and religion such as “Black Interfaith” and similar initiatives and advises on IFYC programs with strong...

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Reverend Frederick A. Davie, Senior Advisor for Racial Equity, executes IFYC programming with a primary focus on the intersection of race and religion such as “Black Interfaith” and similar initiatives and advises on IFYC programs with strong racial equity aspects. Rev. Davie recently served as the Executive Vice President at Union Theological Seminary, where he continues in a part time role as senior advisor to the president. Rev. Davie has extensive experience in senior-level roles in philanthropic and social and economic justice organizations, including The Ford Foundation and the Arcus Foundation.  In June 2020, US Senator Charles Schumer appointed him to the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), an independent, bipartisan commission dedicated to defending the universal right to freedom of religion or belief abroad. President Barack Obama appointed Rev. Davie to the inaugural White House Council on Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships in 2009. He is a minister in the Presbytery of New York City. He serves on the boards of Interfaith Center of NY and Climate Reality Project. Rev. Davie holds a B.A. in Political Science from Greensboro College ’78; and an M.Div. from Yale Divinity School ’82.

Lizzie Franclemont

Program Assistant

Lizzie Franclemont, Program Assistant, supports the Interfaith Diversity Experiences and Attitudes Longitudinal Survey and the IFYC-CCCU grants. She graduated in May of 2020 with a B.A. in American Culture Studies and Religious Studies from...

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Lizzie Franclemont, Program Assistant, supports the Interfaith Diversity Experiences and Attitudes Longitudinal Survey and the IFYC-CCCU grants. She graduated in May of 2020 with a B.A. in American Culture Studies and Religious Studies from Washington University in St. Louis, and she is currently earning a Pastoral Leadership certification. Most days at IFYC, Lizzie assists with contacting grant awardees, logistics for meetings with campus partners, and evaluation surveys. In her free time, Lizzie enjoys cooking and yoga. Her interest in civic religious pluralism stemmed from an Interfaith Fellows Cohort her Senior Spring of College. Also, given the illustration of the Good Samaritan and Jesus’ unconditional love for others, Lizzie believes that interreligious engagement and equity are integral to her journey as an apprentice of Jesus.

Mary Ellen Giess

Vice President of Strategic Initiatives

Driven by her Unitarian Universalist values and personal experiences in college to build interfaith cooperation, Mary Ellen joined IFYC in 2008. She currently oversees innovative and strategic partnership opportunities for the organization, as...

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Driven by her Unitarian Universalist values and personal experiences in college to build interfaith cooperation, Mary Ellen joined IFYC in 2008. She currently oversees innovative and strategic partnership opportunities for the organization, as well as organizational evaluation, both of which include high-level management of the Interfaith Diversity Experiences and Attitudes Longitudinal Survey (IDEALS) research partnership. Her eleven years at IFYC have also included overseeing strategic engagement of student affairs and religious life professionals, serving as the organization’s executive vice president, and partnering with the Obama administration to create and implement the President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge. Having edited Educating About Religious Diversity and Interfaith Engagement: A Handbook for Student Affairs (2019), she has also published articles for the Washington Post, Inside Higher Ed, and the Chronicle of Higher Education, and has presented on panels across the country. After completing her undergraduate work at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Mary Ellen received her Master’s degree in religion and government from Harvard Divinity School. Outside of work, she can be found chasing her husband and three daughters around town and serving on the board of her Unitarian Universalist congregation.

Amber Hacker

Vice President of Operations and Finance

An IFYC leader since 2007, Amber’s commitment to interfaith cooperation is inspired by Jesus’s call to love our neighbors. She currently oversees a wide range of functions within the organization, from accounting, IT, and talent development to...

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An IFYC leader since 2007, Amber’s commitment to interfaith cooperation is inspired by Jesus’s call to love our neighbors. She currently oversees a wide range of functions within the organization, from accounting, IT, and talent development to thought leadership, branding, and messaging. As IFYC’s treasurer, she works closely with the board of directors to ensure the organization’s financial processes are accurate and efficient. Amber’s passion for finance and for applying the best of business practices to nonprofit and mission-driven work has earned her the nickname Budget Hacker at IFYC. She holds an MBA from American University’s Kogod School of Business and was recently featured in an article on personal finance for Woman’s Day magazine. Before stepping into her current role at IFYC, Amber managed a number of the organization’s key programs, including the IFYC Alumni Program, Days of Interfaith Youth Service, Fellows Alliance, Bridge Builders Network, and IFYC conferences. Amber and her husband Jason live in Chicago with their two children.

Carr Harkrader

Director of the Interfaith Leadership Institute

Carr Harkrader, Director of the Interfaith Leadership Institute, oversees online learning and curriculum development for IFYC. In his role, Carr develops digital learning tools for IFYC's networks, including written resources, webinars, and...

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Carr Harkrader, Director of the Interfaith Leadership Institute, oversees online learning and curriculum development for IFYC. In his role, Carr develops digital learning tools for IFYC's networks, including written resources, webinars, and online communities and coordinates curriculum and content for the Interfaith Leadership Institute. Carr earned a BA in political science and history from UNC-Chapel Hill and a M.Ed from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. As an educator, Carr's interest in interfaith cooperation comes directly from his belief that learning together and acting as a community can bring people together across lines of difference.

Becca Hartman-Pickerill

Director of Program Resourcing

Becca Hartman-Pickerill, Director of Program Resourcing, directs internal systems that support an agile program team and organizational evaluation. Becca has a BA in Philosophy and Religion from Northwestern University and an MA in Forced...

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Becca Hartman-Pickerill, Director of Program Resourcing, directs internal systems that support an agile program team and organizational evaluation. Becca has a BA in Philosophy and Religion from Northwestern University and an MA in Forced Migration from the African Centre for Migration and Society in Johannesburg, South Africa. Day to day Becca supports IFYC's team of program managers, resources college and university educators, facilitates interfaith training and leads up IFYC's Campus Interfaith Inventory. Becca relishes living in Roger's Park with great neighbors and running to the beach for fun with her family. Her passion for interfaith leadership is rooted in her American Baptist faith and family traditions, which spurred her to lead interfaith service learning work as an undergraduate.

Megan Hughes Johnson

Senior Consultant for Strategic Initiatives

Megan Johnson, Senior Consultant for Strategic Initiatives, works closely with campus partners to develop and implement sustainable leadership practices for interfaith cooperation. Megan’s undergraduate work in culture and politics at...

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Megan Johnson, Senior Consultant for Strategic Initiatives, works closely with campus partners to develop and implement sustainable leadership practices for interfaith cooperation. Megan’s undergraduate work in culture and politics at Georgetown University and her graduate work in religion and conflict at the University of Chicago Divinity School sparked her interest in bridge-building and youth activism. Prior to IFYC, Megan worked for five years for Seeds of Peace where she developed leadership programs for young people from conflict zones. When not at IFYC, Megan spends time playing trains with her two kids and exploring new green spaces in Cincinnati. Megan’s commitment to religious pluralism stems from witnessing first-hand the cost of religious division and her experience building connections across lines of difference.

Michael Kendricks

Director of Salesforce and IT

Michael Kendricks, Director of Salesforce and IT, administers Salesforce for IFYC and performs work on other IT projects. Michael graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in Computer Technology. Prior to IFYC he worked in IT in the...

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Michael Kendricks, Director of Salesforce and IT, administers Salesforce for IFYC and performs work on other IT projects. Michael graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in Computer Technology. Prior to IFYC he worked in IT in the financial sector. In his current position, he manages IFYC's implementation of Salesforce and partners with IFYC leaders to improve operation and add features. He also performs project management for various IT initiatives at IFYC. In his free time, he enjoys listening to any new music he can find, sports, spending time with family, and engaging in city-focused discussion. Michael believes that IFYC's mission is of key importance to our growing multi-cultural society and higher education is an optimal place to reach and engage with future leaders.

Rachel Kline

Program Manager

Rachel (she, her, hers) is originally from New Jersey, has her B.A. in Sociology and Interpersonal Communication from the Universtiy of Delaware, her M.Ed. in Counselor Education (Student Affairs) from Clemson University and her M.S. in...

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Rachel (she, her, hers) is originally from New Jersey, has her B.A. in Sociology and Interpersonal Communication from the Universtiy of Delaware, her M.Ed. in Counselor Education (Student Affairs) from Clemson University and her M.S. in Cultural Foundations of Education (Certificate of Advance Studies in Women and Gender Studies) from Syracuse University. She has worked in social justice education and residence life and believes in the life changing power of creating community across difference. Her favorite hobbies are: gardening, listening to podcasts and trying new crafts. She is currently trying to learn to how to cross stitch, knit, and bake the perfect challah!

Hailey Melville

Senior Web Developer

Hailey Melville, Senior Web Developer, supports the marketing team by designing and developing powerful user experiences. A graduate of Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism, Hailey has created websites for a variety of organizations. Most...

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Hailey Melville, Senior Web Developer, supports the marketing team by designing and developing powerful user experiences. A graduate of Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism, Hailey has created websites for a variety of organizations. Most recently, Hailey was a developer at the Wall Street Journal, working with their digital advertising studio. Before that she led the front-end efforts at Smile Train, a global charity committed to treating cleft lip and palate. In her spare time, Hailey loves to play music with her band, try new restaurants, and play golf. Hailey is originally from Boston, but grew up in Tampa, Florida. She received her undergraduate in psychology from Florida State University.

Connie Meyer

Curriculum Development Consultant

Connie Meyer, Curriculum Development Consultant, manages IFYC’s curricular resources to ensure best-in-class learning for participants across all IFYC programs. Connie joined IFYC in 2009, leveraging her background in learning & development...

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Connie Meyer, Curriculum Development Consultant, manages IFYC’s curricular resources to ensure best-in-class learning for participants across all IFYC programs. Connie joined IFYC in 2009, leveraging her background in learning & development, dispute resolution, and intercultural relations to lead on the Faiths Act Fellowship and Better Together campaign. Connie now consults with colleagues across the organization to create engaging, effective interfaith learning experiences across in-person, online, and hybrid spaces. In her free time, you’ll find her reading about the bravery of American suffragettes, seeking out chocolate cake, or watching Top Chef. Connie’s career springs from a passion for the positive potential that sits at the intersection of our differences; she is thrilled to cultivate that potential across an Interfaith America.

Hannah Minks

Program Manager

Hannah Minks, Program Manager, develops and trains IFYC curriculum and shares stories of interfaith leadership. Hannah received her BA in Theology and is currently earning her MA in Theological Studies. She comes to her role having taught...

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Hannah Minks, Program Manager, develops and trains IFYC curriculum and shares stories of interfaith leadership. Hannah received her BA in Theology and is currently earning her MA in Theological Studies. She comes to her role having taught theology at the high school level for a handful of years, always through the lens of pluralism. Hannah reads, makes candles, and DJs in her free time. She believes that participating in a vision for how diverse individuals can co-create a healthy civic space is an inherently spiritual endeavor—one that follows in the footsteps of awe-inspiring figures from her Catholic background like Saint Catherine of Siena and Dorothy Day.

Jenan Mohajir

Senior Director of Leadership

Inspired by faith and family to work for change at the intersections of gender, sexuality, race, and religion, Jenan has served in a leadership position at IFYC for thirteen years. She currently directs overall strategy, design, and...

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Inspired by faith and family to work for change at the intersections of gender, sexuality, race, and religion, Jenan has served in a leadership position at IFYC for thirteen years. She currently directs overall strategy, design, and implementation of the organization’s programs focused on alumni and student leaders, including the annual Interfaith Leadership Institute. For over a decade, Jenan has trained hundreds of young people from both religious and secular backgrounds to foster a vision and practice of civically engaged interfaith leadership. Featured on National Public Radio and participating in interfaith conference panels across the country, Jenan holds a BS in elementary education and Islamic studies from DePaul University, and is currently pursuing her MA in religious studies at Chicago Theological Seminary. She also volunteers with Sirat Chicago, a neighborhood space that fosters a healthy community by supporting initiatives centered upon service and worship, education and arts, and family life. Living on the south side of Chicago with her husband and three children, Jenan is an enthusiastic collector of old children’s books.

Maia Moore

Program Assistant

Maia Moore, Program Assistant, provides support for the Alumni Leadership team, as well as assisting on a variety of grant projects. She graduated in 2018 and holds a B.A. in International Economics and Chinese Studies from Valparaiso...

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Maia Moore, Program Assistant, provides support for the Alumni Leadership team, as well as assisting on a variety of grant projects. She graduated in 2018 and holds a B.A. in International Economics and Chinese Studies from Valparaiso University. Prior to working at IFYC, Maia has worked in different roles with the U.S. Department of State and in the higher education sector. Maia's interest in interfaith began by befriending a religious studies scholar while living in Taiwan. Her desire for a society committed to interfaith and intercultural cooperation as well as racial equity motivated her to join IFYC after she returned to the United States. Outside of work, you can usually find Maia trying new recipes, reading a new book, or traveling to a new country.

Shauna Morin

Strategic Initiatives Consultant

Shauna Morin is a higher education scholar-practitioner committed to fostering spirituality, meaning-making, and interfaith competencies among college students and young adults. Over the past five years, Shauna has been involved in...

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Shauna Morin is a higher education scholar-practitioner committed to fostering spirituality, meaning-making, and interfaith competencies among college students and young adults. Over the past five years, Shauna has been involved in administering the Interfaith Diversity Experiences and Attitudes Longitudinal Survey (IDEALS), which examines interfaith engagement and worldview diversity in college. Prior professional experiences include community outreach and service-learning, co-curricular campus programming, and undergraduate and graduate-level teaching. Shauna holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Notre Dame, a master's in College Student Affairs from Penn State University, and a Ph.D. in Higher Education from North Carolina State University. Outside of work, she enjoys experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen, exploring local hiking trails, and volunteering at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, her faith community in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Noa Nakao

Program Assistant

Noa Nakao, Program Assistant, provides administrative support to IFYC's Academic Initiatives and Higher Education Partnerships. She graduated in May of 2021 with a B.A. in International Relations from Wheaton College (IL). Prior to joining IFYC...

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Noa Nakao, Program Assistant, provides administrative support to IFYC's Academic Initiatives and Higher Education Partnerships. She graduated in May of 2021 with a B.A. in International Relations from Wheaton College (IL). Prior to joining IFYC, Noa interned with the Telos Group, which in conjunction with her Christian faith, has spurred her professional and personal interest in promoting interfaith cooperation. In her free time, Noa enjoys baking, watching baseball, and hunting a good bargain. 

Katherine O'Brien

Marketing & Communications Assistant

Katherine O'Brien, Marketing & Communications Assistant, offers administrative assistance that bolsters the ongoing success of IFYC’s interfaith programming. She spends her time at IFYC maintaining our network database, crafting emails,...

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Katherine O'Brien, Marketing & Communications Assistant, offers administrative assistance that bolsters the ongoing success of IFYC’s interfaith programming. She spends her time at IFYC maintaining our network database, crafting emails, creating promotional materials, and offering technical support for our webinars. Katherine graduated in May of 2019 with a B.A. in International Studies and a certificate in Religious Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is also a Communications Coordinator at UW-Madion’s Center for Religion and Global Citizenry. Katherine is drawn to interfaith work through her belief in offering others the radical compassion she believes we all deserve. In her free time, Katherine enjoys spending time with her two younger siblings, painting, cooking new dishes, walking by the lake, and watching tv and movies.

Brande Orr

Foundation Relations Manager

Brande Orr, Foundation Relations Manager, supports the Advancement Team to secure public and private grant funding for IFYC’s programs and strategic plans. She earned an MBA from Pepperdine University and has spent her career serving nonprofit...

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Brande Orr, Foundation Relations Manager, supports the Advancement Team to secure public and private grant funding for IFYC’s programs and strategic plans. She earned an MBA from Pepperdine University and has spent her career serving nonprofit organizations focused on health, social services, and education. At IFYC, Brande prepares proposals and reports to funding partners helping to communicate what it is we do, why it is important, and what impact we can make by collaborating. She enjoys documentaries, rainy days, and discovering interfaith stories within the history of the HIV and AIDS epidemic. Brande is drawn to IFYC’s mission and vision by a conviction that interfaith cooperation can inspire and inform solutions to inequity, suffering, and conflict of all kinds.

Chris Portman

Director of Foundation Relations

Director of Foundation Relations Chris Portman began his career as an attorney but quickly gravitated to the nonprofit world. After teaching legal writing and working in a law library, he spent several years as an at-home dad, then went back to...

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Director of Foundation Relations Chris Portman began his career as an attorney but quickly gravitated to the nonprofit world. After teaching legal writing and working in a law library, he spent several years as an at-home dad, then went back to work as a reference librarian. Most recently, Chris worked in fundraising, communications, and marketing for two independent schools. He has a B.A. in English from Notre Dame, a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School, an MLS from Rosary College, and also studied with the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago. Chris is an avid college football fan and, having grown up in western New York, remains loyal to Buffalo sports teams despite (or maybe because of) their limited success. He also enjoys cooking and woodworking. A lifelong Catholic, he believes in both large-C Catholic heritage and small-c catholic universality and is drawn to ecumenical and interfaith initiatives as a path toward both learning and peace.

Rev. Paul Brandeis Raushenbush

Senior Advisor for Public Affairs and Innovation

Growing up in an interfaith family instilled in Paul an “interfaith heart,” and he is committed to co-creating a world in which all people, no matter what belief or religious tradition, live with respect and dignity. At IFYC, Paul builds...

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Growing up in an interfaith family instilled in Paul an “interfaith heart,” and he is committed to co-creating a world in which all people, no matter what belief or religious tradition, live with respect and dignity. At IFYC, Paul builds platforms that highlight the hopeful voices working in interfaith engagement in higher education, and also helps national journalists tell the story of interfaith America. Paul works to find ways of incorporating interfaith leadership training into online curricular and co-curricular offerings, and looks at how digital technologies and hybrid learning are changing interfaith leadership. A pioneer in journalism that promotes interfaith voices in the public square, Paul was an editor at Beliefnet.com before founding and leading the religion section at HuffPost, which under his leadership grew to the largest interfaith religion site online. With a bachelor’s degree in religion from Macalester College and a master of divinity from Union Theological Seminary, he has also served as associate dean of religious life at Princeton University, and as a denominational chaplain at Columbia University. He is an ordained American Baptist minister

Carolyn Roncolato

Director of Academic Initiatives

As the Director of Academic Initiatives, Carolyn works with faculty across the country to develop, support, and sustain innovative interfaith studies curriculum. Carolyn has a Ph.D. in Theology, Ethics, and Human Culture from Chicago...

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As the Director of Academic Initiatives, Carolyn works with faculty across the country to develop, support, and sustain innovative interfaith studies curriculum. Carolyn has a Ph.D. in Theology, Ethics, and Human Culture from Chicago Theological Seminary. She has taught and wrote for a number of academic institutions and religious organizations. When not working, Carolyn is hanging out with her husband and son, enjoying the lake, playing in the park, and eating delicious Chicago food.  Carolyn’s Christian faith calls her to work for healing, peace, and justice and she has learned that one of the most powerful ways to do this is to build relationships with, learn from, and work alongside those from different religious and non-religious traditions who share these same values.

Nadia Salam

Controller

Nadia Salam, Controller, oversees accounting and budgeting, tracks revenues and expenses, and prepares financial reports to ensure compliance and transparency. She comes to IFYC with 22 years of accounting experience at various nonprofit...

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Nadia Salam, Controller, oversees accounting and budgeting, tracks revenues and expenses, and prepares financial reports to ensure compliance and transparency. She comes to IFYC with 22 years of accounting experience at various nonprofit organizations. She earned her M.Phil degree in Economics from Quaid-i-Azam University, and she is pursuing her Master’s Degree in Accounting and Financial Management from DeVry University. She lives in Carol Stream with her husband and a son. Interfaith work is Nadia’s personal passion. Being a member of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Nadia fully recognizes the importance of religious pluralism, religious freedom and the strength of interfaith knowledge. Nadia is also a cake decorator who enjoys baking and decorating cakes for weddings, birthdays, baby showers, and all occasions.

Noah Silverman

Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships

While living in Jerusalem, Noah grew interested in young adult leadership, interfaith understanding, and conflict resolution. At IFYC, he works with college and university faculty and senior administrators, exploring with them the contours and...

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While living in Jerusalem, Noah grew interested in young adult leadership, interfaith understanding, and conflict resolution. At IFYC, he works with college and university faculty and senior administrators, exploring with them the contours and implications of the academic study of interfaith cooperation, and helping them to think holistically about interfaith cooperation across their campuses. Professionally involved in interfaith work for two decades on three continents, he holds an MA in religious studies from New York University. In addition to his work with IFYC and dozens of colleges and universities, Noah served as the associate director of multifaith education at Auburn Theological Seminary, and has worked for Religions for Peace at the United Nations, the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Barcelona, the Interfaith Encounter Association and the Seeds of Peace Center for Coexistence in Jerusalem, and the Tony Blair Faith Foundation in London. He has written numerous articles and chapters on the methodology of interfaith cooperation and the growing academic field of interfaith studies, and co-edited Interreligious/Interfaith Studies: Defining a New Field. Outside the office, Noah spends time attending the theater, traveling,
and rethinking Jewish communal education.

Teri Simon

Director of Executive Office

Teri Simon, Director of Executive Office, provides administrative support for the Executive Team including Eboo Patel, Founder and President. In this role, she works closely with individual donors, high-level campus and higher education...

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Teri Simon, Director of Executive Office, provides administrative support for the Executive Team including Eboo Patel, Founder and President. In this role, she works closely with individual donors, high-level campus and higher education stakeholders. She also coordinates the general operations of IFYC by managing our office while providing general support for team-wide functions. Teri holds a B.S. in Business Education and prior to joining IFYC, she was at the University of Chicago as an executive assistant to a Nobel Laureate Professor of Economics. In her free time, you might see her biking along the lake shore, exploring the back roads or on a century ride somewhere in the Midwest. Teri is passionate about the IFYC mission as she sees knowledge and understanding of religious pluralism as the path to a peaceful and enriching existence.
 

Jack Spector-Bishop

Program Assistant

Jack Spector-Bishop, Program Assistant, provides administrative support to IFYC's academic initiatives and higher education partnerships. He graduated in May of 2020 with a B.A. in Sociology and Studio Art from Oberlin College. At IFYC, Jack...

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Jack Spector-Bishop, Program Assistant, provides administrative support to IFYC's academic initiatives and higher education partnerships. He graduated in May of 2020 with a B.A. in Sociology and Studio Art from Oberlin College. At IFYC, Jack helps support his colleagues with the logistics of curricular development and higher education programming, including The Institute on Teaching and Learning for Campus-wide Interfaith Excellence in partnership with The Association of American Colleges and Universities. When not working, Jack enjoys cooking, exploring new neighborhoods by bike, and pursuing his passion for fine art printmaking. His approach to interfaith work comes from a sociological interest in how building bonds across difference can create a more just and compassionate society.

Silma Suba

Media Manager & Staff Writer

Silma Suba is a journalist and media communications specialist who received her B.S. and M.S. in journalism and a Certificate in Integrated Marketing Communications from Northwestern. Silma was born in Bangladesh, but grew up in Qatar, and at...

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Silma Suba is a journalist and media communications specialist who received her B.S. and M.S. in journalism and a Certificate in Integrated Marketing Communications from Northwestern. Silma was born in Bangladesh, but grew up in Qatar, and at Northwestern's Qatar campus she served as the editor-in-chief of the campus newspaper - the Daily Q. She is fluent in four languages and is as adept at digital platforms and social media as she is in traditional print media. Silma has won prizes for poetry and journalism, most notably, the Best Journalistic Writing award from Northwestern for a story about a portable school for Afghan refugees, published while she was in a journalism residency at the Pulitzer Center in Washington, D.C. Silma has worked as a remote journalist for media outlets like TRT World - Turkey, and strategized media communications for organizations like Mercedes-Benz and mPower Social in Bangladesh. When not at work, Silma likes to spend her time cooking and exploring new bookstores, arcades, restaurants, and museums.

Slavica Sudar

Accounting and Advancement Administrator

Slavica Sudar, Accounting and Advancement Administrator, oversees daily bookkeeping activities of the organization and is also assisting Institutional Advancement Team with donor stewardship and fundraising activities. Slavica has worked in the...

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Slavica Sudar, Accounting and Advancement Administrator, oversees daily bookkeeping activities of the organization and is also assisting Institutional Advancement Team with donor stewardship and fundraising activities. Slavica has worked in the nonprofit sector for six and a half years, focusing on accounting. Slavica graduated from Loyola University Chicago with B.S. in Anthropology and still maintains her love for history and different cultures by traveling and often visiting museums. She strongly believes in the beauty of a multi-cultural society and feels an interfaith cooperation is a key step to achieving it.

Calvin Taylor

Program Manager

As Program Manager, Calvin has responsibility across the higher education landscape, but works primarily with IFYC faculty partners as they incorporate innovative interfaith themes and theory into their pedagogy and curricula. Calvin is also...

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As Program Manager, Calvin has responsibility across the higher education landscape, but works primarily with IFYC faculty partners as they incorporate innovative interfaith themes and theory into their pedagogy and curricula. Calvin is also the chairperson for IFYC's internal Racial Equity Working Group. Prior to joining IFYC, Calvin worked in operations and teacher development at an education agency that hired, trained, and managed teachers for public, charter, and private schools across the country, and as an adjunct professor of religion and culture at public and private institutions. Calvin is a graduate of Trinity International University and Emory University’s Candler School of Theology. Outside of IFYC, you can catch Calvin working closely with community and religious organizations in Chicago and Atlanta, enjoying tennis and basketball, and looking to further his impact at the intersection of education and social entrepreneurship.

Kristina Viera

Director of Marketing and Communications

Kristina Viera, Director of Marketing and Communications, holds a role integral to achieving the vision and mission of IFYC, as her team serves as the central internal agency for all departments within the organization. She has driven...

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Kristina Viera, Director of Marketing and Communications, holds a role integral to achieving the vision and mission of IFYC, as her team serves as the central internal agency for all departments within the organization. She has driven successful marketing programs for global, national and local initiative across various verticals including pharma/biotech, advocacy and entertainment. At IFYC, Kristina is dedicated to increasing the reach, visibility and awareness of our organization in innovative ways. She holds two BAs in Political Science and Psychology from Rhode Island College and an MBA with a concentration in Organizational Development from Trinity. Purpose, well-being, and impact are at the root of Kristina's work and the relationships she cultivates. Outside the office, she spends her time strengthening her community, online and IRL.

Morgan Visser

Program Assistant

Morgan Visser, Program Assistant, provides support to the Interfaith Leadership Institute. She graduated in 2019 and holds a B.A. in History and International Studies from Loyola University Chicago. Prior to joining IFYC, Morgan held several...

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Morgan Visser, Program Assistant, provides support to the Interfaith Leadership Institute. She graduated in 2019 and holds a B.A. in History and International Studies from Loyola University Chicago. Prior to joining IFYC, Morgan held several roles within the British Consulate-General Chicago, and also worked for other interfaith non-profits in Chicago. Morgan's interest in interfaith began in high school while participating in Tony Blair's Face to Faith program. Her desire for global connectedness takes root in interfaith and intercultural cooperation and understanding. In her free time, Morgan enjoys reading and playing tennis.

Gracie Webb

Program Assistant

Gracie Webb, Program Assistant, supports Program Resourcing and Partnership work at IFYC. She graduated in 2020 and holds a B.A. in Political Science and Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies from McGill University. Before IFYC, Gracie worked on a...

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Gracie Webb, Program Assistant, supports Program Resourcing and Partnership work at IFYC. She graduated in 2020 and holds a B.A. in Political Science and Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies from McGill University. Before IFYC, Gracie worked on a congressional campaign and at a non-profit on an anti-Islamophobia campaign. Gracie’s interest in interfaith leadership was sparked by her experiences learning Turkish and engaging with intercultural communities. When she’s not at work, Gracie spends her time reading short stories, trying new recipes, and exploring new neighborhoods.

Hannah Willage

Director of Alumni Leadership

Hannah Willage, Director of Alumni Leadership, oversees the suite of programing designed to support IFYC alumni through the application of their interfaith skills in their careers and in civic arenas. Prior to joining IFYC, she worked for 15...

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Hannah Willage, Director of Alumni Leadership, oversees the suite of programing designed to support IFYC alumni through the application of their interfaith skills in their careers and in civic arenas. Prior to joining IFYC, she worked for 15 years as a community organizer on a variety of issues with Russian-speaking refugees and students experiencing homelessness. Hannah earned her Bachelor’s degree from Knox College majoring in Mathematics and Russian. In her role, she develops and directs micro granting programs as well as fellowship experiences for our more developed alumni.  With an eye to leadership development and relationship building, Hannah is constantly seeking ways to help alumni grow and foster a strengthen IFYC Alumni Network.  She enjoys playing and reading with her two children, and exploring all of the Chicago neighborhoods. To Hannah, interfaith leadership means being a good listener, being able to take risks, and having a genuine love of people.

Vanessa Young

Office Assistant

Vanessa Young, Office Assistant, provides administrative support for the Executive Team, Human Resources and office operations. She earned her B.A. from Augustana College (IL) and her M.A. from Luther Seminary (MN). Prior to joining IFYC,...

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Vanessa Young, Office Assistant, provides administrative support for the Executive Team, Human Resources and office operations. She earned her B.A. from Augustana College (IL) and her M.A. from Luther Seminary (MN). Prior to joining IFYC, Vanessa worked with children, youth, young adults and their families within the ELCA churchwide office and congregations, in the Midwest and abroad. In her free time, she enjoys reading, volunteering, traveling, and spending time with family and friends. Vanessa's commitment to interfaith cooperation is rooted in Jesus' command that people love one another - listening to each other's stories and actively supporting one another in striving to build Beloved Community.

Angela Zonderman

Director of Human Resources

Angela Zonderman, Director of Human Resources, supports IFYC and its dedicated staff in all realms of HR. Angela graduated from University of Michigan and has since honed her operations and human resources skills in national and international...

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Angela Zonderman, Director of Human Resources, supports IFYC and its dedicated staff in all realms of HR. Angela graduated from University of Michigan and has since honed her operations and human resources skills in national and international organizations in the US and abroad. She spends most of her time looking for qualified candidates who are passionate about IFYC's mission and supporting the day-to-day needs of IFYC’s current staff. Angela considers herself to be ‘crafty’ and dabbles in photography and knitting. Angela is honored to be contributing to IFYC’s work as she sees the interfaith movement as the foundation for building peace in the world.