BOARD MEMBERS

Ohio IPL Board

Rev. Deb Conklin, Board Treasurer
PastorDebMarch2016The Rev. Deborah Conklin is pastor of Peace Lutheran Church, Bowling Green Ohio and is the Executive Director of a transitional housing program for homeless women recovery from chemical dependency. Her advocacy work began in 1988 working for the Toledo Metropolitan Mission where she led an Employment Readiness and Placement project for African-American young men, the highest unemployed population in most communities. More

Ruchira S. Datta

Ruchira S. Datta is a practitioner of bhakti yoga, the yoga of love and devotion, in the Gauḍīẏa Vaiṣṇava tradition (often considered a sect of Hinduism). She has undergone two successive initiations into this lineage, receiving the spiritual name Rukmiṇī Devī dāsi. She has a bachelor’s in mathematics from Caltech, and a master’s in computer science and a PhD in mathematics from UC Berkeley, specializing in game theory. She grew up in Denver, Colorado and moved to Columbus, Ohio from California in 2014. Rukmiṇī Devī dāsi has been teaching bhakti yoga publicly since 2013…More

 

Rev. Peter Galbraith

Peter Galbraith became pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Nelsonville, Ohio in February of 2011. Prior to coming to Nelsonville, Peter worked as a hospital chaplain at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Mission Hills, California.

He also taught English as a second language for three years in Vietnam and served there another two years in organizational leadership. Peter has a B.A. from Miami University of Ohio, and both an M.A. in Cross-Cultural Studies and M.Div. from Fuller Theological Seminary…More

Valerie Gilbert

Valerie Gilbert is an Energy Analyst with Energility LLC. She works with small companies and Houses of Worship to determine building energy profiles and assist in the development of energy management plans. She is a firm believer in “Everything is Connected” – that we cannot cause harm to the earth without causing harm to ourselves and every living spirit…More

 

 

Suzanne Halstead

Suzanne Halstead has worked extensively in many cultural, educational and museum environments as an educator, exhibits and program developer and arts director.  She received her MA in Education from Concordia University, IL with special emphasis on the development of creativity and play for informal learning settings.  She has also been active in church camping as arts & crafts director with an emphasis on the arts in the natural setting.  She is an active member in the United Church of Christ…More

Dr. Greg Hitzhusen, M.Div.
Greg_hitzhusen-150x150Greg Hitzhusen is an Assistant Professor of Professional Practice in the School of Environment and Natural Resources at The Ohio State University (OSU); he was the founding Director of OhIPL His work and research center on the intersection of faith and the environment and on developing partnerships between scientific and faith communities…More
Rev. Meribah Mansfield, Board Chair
Meribah-MansfieldThe Rev. Meribah Mansfield has been involved with Ohio Interfaith Power and Light since its initial meeting in October 2007. She served on its founding board from 2008-2011, and rejoined the board in 2016. Care for creation is fundamental to her faith. She is a vegetarian who believes that all people deserve to have access to fresh, healthy food, so she has served on the board of Franklinton Gardens since its inception in 2013. It is an urban farm that grows and shares fresh food in the food desert of Franklinton. As an ordained Episcopal deacon in the Diocese of Southern Ohio, Meribah currently serves at St. John’s in Columbus…More
Mark A. McClain
Mark A. McClain received his BA degree in sociology from Harvard College and his law degree from Columbia University School of Law. He spent 20 years in the law profession serving in various capacities, including Chief Prosecutor of the cities of Cleveland and East Cleveland, assistant U.S. attorney, judge, civil rights and defense attorney. In 2006 he was called to the ministry in the Primitive Baptist Church…More
 Kelsey Ryan-Simkins, Board Secretary

 

Kelsey Ryan-Simkins followed passions for food and agriculture, social justice, and theology to Columbus and discovered the work of Ohio IPL through these interests.

Before moving to Ohio, Kelsey facilitated ecojustice educational workshops and a permaculture-based youth leadership program at The GrowHaus, a nonprofit urban farm Denver, CO. During this time, Kelsey completed a Permaculture Design Certificate, which has inspired her to think about the ways we learn from patterns in the environment around us…More

 

Shannon Stewart

Shannon Stewart grew up in Scioto County, Ohio, and her wanderings did not take her far. In college, she interned at United Campus Ministry in Athens and explored questions of faith both through a few different churches and UCM’s Interfaith Impact group.

After attending Ohio University for social work, she served two terms of National Service (AmeriCorps VISTA and AmeriCorps State/National) and landed at Rural Action, managing the Ohio Stream Restore Corps AmeriCorps program. She helps to run a tiny but growing farm in Glouster…More

Dr. Tim Van Meter

In the early 1990’s, I worked as an environmental planner for an engineering firm writing environmental impact statements for road projects in Indiana, Kentucky, and Illinois. It was in the midst of this work that I first read The Sand County Almanac. Aldo Leopold – along with Wendell Berry, Wes Jackson, Thomas Merton, Rachel Carson, Mary Oliver, Thomas Berry, and others – raised crucial questions about the interrelationship of community, place, health, and land. …More

 
Sr. Caroljean Willie
Cj3Caroljean Willie is a Sister of Charity of Cincinnati. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, a Master’s Degree in Reading and a Ph.D. in Multicultural Education. She has extensive experience working crossculturally throughout the United States, the Caribbean and Latin America. She is a frequent speaker at regional and national conferences and has also given presentations in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Caribbean and Latin America… More

OhIPL ADVISORY COUNCIL

Bishop Tom Breidenthal
Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio

Dr. Alvin Compaan
University of Toledo

Dr. David Orr
Oberlin College

Janine Migden-Ostrander
Regulatory Assistance Project

 

Bill Spratley
Green Energy Ohio

Dr. Lonnie Thompson
Byrd Polar Research Center
Ohio State University

Rev. Rebecca Tollefson
Ohio Council of Churches