Beyond my role in the classroom, I have served and continue to serve in various leadership capacities in educational and religious settings. I have included some of the highlights of that leadership below.
While working as a research fellow at the ICW, I founded and directed a multi-university, cross-disciplinary writing group for graduate students writing their dissertations. The program was wonderfully successful in easing the loneliness of the process, improving the quality of the writing, and enhancing the job prospects of participants. Where my department had recently placed fewer than one student per year in tenure-track jobs, six members of that group secured tenure-track positions in their first year on the job market.
At Pomona College I worked as a Resident Advisor for two years. It is rare for a junior to be hired as an RA at Pomona, and especially for one to be assigned to the north campus area – where most juniors and seniors live – but I served in that capacity well. I was subsequently hired to serve there over the summer and rehired for the following year. This time, at my request, I received an assignment to a first year student hall, where I could serve as a mentor for entering students and their second-year sponsors. During my time as an RA I helped the members of our community deal with a student suicide, the unexpected death of another student, and a traumatic racial incident.
As an RA, I also put on campus events and served as the first level contact for health, safety, and policy matters during frequent on-call shifts in evenings and on weekends. My most successful and memorable program was a panel discussion on religious experience at Pomona. The six panelists represented all grade levels, six faith traditions, and various levels of activity. Since religion seemed to be a growing but little-discussed fact of campus life, this panel helped spark wider discussions of a key element of campus diversity. Finally, while working as an RA served on the Dean of Students’ hiring committee for a new drug and alcohol counselor.
Currently, I serve as the director of teaching for a group of church congregations in a region stretching from Pasadena to East Los Angeles. I train local leaders and teachers to improve instruction for adults. In the first quarter each year I visited each congregation to teach members and train local teachers. We also planned and executed a first annual teacher training event which included three sessions with nine different workshops for teachers of youth and adults, plus a guest speaker.
From 2005 to 2008 I served as an executive officer for a diverse religious congregation in the Hollywood area. In that role I proposed and executed staff changes, trained new and existing staff, planned and directed weekly meetings for members and leaders, and oversaw programs for all ages. I was responsible for setting the agenda and conducting for regular leadership meetings and weekly worship meetings.