The Venerable Carole Maddux, Archdeacon, The Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta
Carole Maddux has extensive experience in advocacy, leadership, policy, and nonprofit management. Ordained as a deacon in the Episcopal Church in 2006 and appointed archdeacon of the Diocese of Atlanta encompassing north and middle Georgia, she has a passion for pursuing God’s mission in the world. Archdeacon Maddux has served on multiple boards in the community including local service nonprofits (both faith-based and secular), statewide healthcare organizations, and an international religious organization. She is both founder and executive director of the Georgia Interfaith Public Policy Center. Archdeacon Maddux has 24 years of experience in nonprofit management, 16 of which are at the executive level. She has an undergraduate degree in communications from Georgia State University and master’s degree in Health Care Policy and Administration from Mercer University.
Born in Waycross, GA, she is a ninth generation Georgian with a deep love of Georgia and Georgians.
Board Of Directors
The Reverend John Moeller, Chairman of the Board
The Reverend Moeller has more than 25 years’ experience in ministry and nonprofit leadership. Before joining Inspiritus in February 2017, he served for five years as the CEO and President at Action Ministries in Atlanta. Under his leadership, Action Ministries expanded its service territory and increased its revenues while revitalizing its relationship with its United Methodist Church roots. Prior to Action Ministries, The Reverend Moeller served for ten years as chief executive officer of MUST Ministries in Marietta. He is ordained as a minister in the United Methodist Church and served as Pastor to UMC congregations in North Georgia from 1991 to 2001 before being called to work in nonprofit human and social services. The Reverend Moeller retains his ordination status and currently serves as an ordained elder. As an outdoor enthusiast, The Reverend Moeller spends much of his leisure time hiking, biking, and pursuing other activities in nature. He is a graduate of the University of Georgia and received his Master of Divinity from Emory University.
Brenda Joyce Smith, PhD, Independent Scholar.
Ms. Smith is a reformist committed to the ethic of living out the justice of our lives in today’s world. Educated in universities and seminaries of the North, Southeast and Midwest, she holds four graduate degrees including a doctorate from Emory University, School of Theology, A Master’s degree in Divinity from Union Theological Seminary, New York City, a Master’s degree in Social Work and Planning from Columbia University and, a Master’s in Education and Counseling from Michigan State University. She received her Clinical Pastoral Education as a chaplain at HealthCare Chaplaincy Corporation, New York City and Anderson, South Carolina. Her avocation focuses upon equity at the intersection of public policy and religion. Anthropological trauma constitutes her professional scholarship, particularly the chronicity of emotional and sociological shadows caused by systemic gaps in public policies and service initiatives. Ms. Smith is ordained in the American Baptist tradition and for the last ten years has served as an ordained elder in the Atlanta Presbytery.
Ann Cramer, Secretary of the board
Mrs. Cramer is retired after a long and successful career at the IBM Corporation, where she started as a Systems Engineer in Jacksonville and retired as its Director for IBM Corporate Citizenship and Corporate Affairs for the Americas. Ann is an active member of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, where she has served as Senior Warden of the Vestry. Ann is committed to and involved with the improvement of conditions for families and children, equity, social justice and breaking the cycle of generational poverty. In support of those priority faith and focus areas, Ann served as chair of the Atlanta Public School Superintendent Search Committee, as chair of the Atlanta Partners for Education, the Georgia Foundation for Public Education and WorkSource Atlanta and chair of Public Broadcasting Atlanta (PBA), the ARC Educated Subcommittee, Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education (GPEE), the Carter Center Board of Councilors, Communities- in-Schools Georgia, the Georgia Chamber’s Education Committee, Voices for Georgia’s Children, Georgia Shakespeare Festival and the Georgia Chapter of the International Women’s Forum.
Howard Mosby, Senior Vice President, Grady Healthcare System, Atlanta. Treasurer
Mr. Mosby is a twenty-six-year employee of the Grady Health System. He is Vice President of Faculty Contracts Administration. Grady Health System is the largest public health system in the state of Georgia. It serves as a major teaching institution for the Emory University School of Medicine and the Morehouse School of Medicine. He is responsible for managing a budget of more than $250 million. Mr. Mosby also serves on the Emory University School of Medicine and the Morehouse School of Medicine’s Graduate Medical Education Advisory Committees and is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives.
He is also a member of the Georgia Association of Medical Staff Services, as well as the National Association of Medical Staff Services. Mr. Mosby is a Georgia licensed Certified Public Accountant, and a Chartered Global Management Accountant, and is an active member of the Georgia Society of CPA’s (GSCPA) and serves on that group’s Board of Directors. He is an alumnus of the 2008 Class of Society’s Leadership Academy. He is also an active member in the American Institute of CPA’s (AICPA). Currently, he serves as Chairman of the 1st Choice Credit Union Board of Directors, immediate past Chairman of the East Lake YMCA Advisory Board, former Treasurer of the Georgia Charitable Care Network, and former Treasurer of the National Black Caucus of State Legislators. Mr. Mosby also serves on the newly formed Atlanta-region Transit Link Board.
Peter Berg, Chief Rabbi, The Temple
Rabbi Berg became the fifth senior rabbi of The Temple since 1895 in July 2008. Rabbi Berg is passionate about Jewish learning and meaningful worship, and he is an advocate for social change. Prior to coming to The Temple, he served as rabbi of Temple Beth Or in Washington Township, New Jersey and as the Associate Rabbi of Temple Emanu-El in Dallas, Texas. Over the years, Rabbi Berg has spent a great deal of time working with advocacy groups on issues such as separation of church and state, the death penalty, civil rights, religious freedom, welfare reform, hate crimes and the environment. He currently serves on the Board of American Jewish Committee, The Anti-Defamation League, Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta, URJ Camp Coleman Clergy Advisory Board, The Georgia Early Education Alliance for Ready Students (GEEARS), and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) He is a member of the Greater Atlanta Reform Clergy Association and the Atlanta Rabbinical Association. A native of Ocean Township, New Jersey, Rabbi Berg holds a degree in Education and Human Development, with a focus in human services, counseling and Judaic Studies from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. He earned his M.A. in Hebrew Literature and his rabbinic ordination from Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in New York and Jerusalem, where he was a Steinhardt Fellow. Rabbi Berg also holds a certificate in Chemical Dependency and Spiritual Counseling and is a trained Disaster, Fire and Police Chaplain. In 2013, Rabbi Berg was named by Newsweek and The Daily Beast as one of the top 50 most influential rabbis in the United States of America.
Robert B. Currey, Founder, Currey & Company, Inc.
Mr. Currey and his wife Suzanne founded Garden Source Furnishings, Currey & Company, a wholesale manufacturer of distinctive home furnishings, including lighting, furniture, and accent pieces. Today the company employs approximately 550 people around the globe—from its headquarters in Atlanta, to Currey International in the Philippines, India and China: and its International Sales Office in Hong Kong.
Robert also founded Storehouse Inc. in 1969, to provide contemporary home furnishings When Storehouse opened its Lenox Square location in Atlanta in 1978, it was one of the first home furnishings stores in the South to offer housewares, hardware, textiles and lighting. In 2012, the Museum of Design Atlanta honored Currey with the inaugural Legend of Design Award, recognizing him for design excellence, innovation, and his contributions to the field of design.
Chester Fontenot, Jr., PhD, Baptist Professor of English and Director of the African American Studies, Mercer University, Macon, Georgia
Dr. Fontenot earned a B.A. in Theoretical Math and Political Science from Whittier College in 1972 and a Ph.D. in Comparative Cultures from the University of California at Irvine in 1975. He did postdoctoral study at Yale University and attended Christian Theological Seminary. He came to Mercer in 1999. Dr. Fontenot is the author or editor of eight books, including two works in the influential series, “Studies in Black American Literature,” and the first book-length study of racial theorist Frantz Fanon. He has also published over 60 articles and numerous book reviews and newspaper articles. Dr. Fontenot was a founding member and first chair of the Modern Language Association African-American Literature Section and editor of the Black American Literature Forum. He has received numerous awards, and his biography is included in the National Biographical Center in London, England. Dr. Fontenot has earned a national and international reputation in his fields of academic research and has lectured at more than 40 universities in the United States and as a visiting scholar at six universities in four countries abroad. He is the general editor of the Mercer University Press book series, “Voices of the African Diaspora.” He has also served as a consultant for more than 30 years for multiculturalism, diversity, and inclusiveness efforts by institutions.
Soumaya Khalifa, Executive Director, Islamic Speakers Bureau
Mrs. Kalifa is the founding Executive Director of the Islamic Speakers Bureau of Atlanta (ISB), an organization she and a group of Atlanta leaders launched in August 2001. The ISB has been active in the metro Atlanta area and its volunteers have presented to thousands in metro Atlanta and surrounding areas about Islam and Muslims. Under her leadership, the ISB launched several key initiatives. The initiatives include the 100 Influential Georgia Muslims, 40 Under Forty Georgia Muslims, and the newest initiative of the ISB Leadership Institute. In 2017, the ISB partnered with the Atlanta Mayor’s office to host the first Ramadan Iftar hosted at the Atlanta City Hall. In 2018 and 2019, the Atlanta Mayor’s iftars were attended by over 250 people. Soumaya many awards and recognitions for her work with the ISB include the Phoenix Award, the highest award given by the Mayor of Atlanta to a citizen, being named a Women Making a Mark by the Atlanta Magazine and Women of Achievement by the Atlanta YWCA. In addition to her work with the ISB, Khalifa is president of her intercultural consulting firm Khalifa Consulting. Soumaya is also an adjunct faculty at Emory University’s Center for Continuing Education where she offers courses on intercultural communication and Human Resources. Khalifa serves on Grady Foundation’s Grady Ambassadors, the board of the Concordia Forum, and is a past board member of AIB TV and SIETAR USA. Soumaya received the FBI’s Director Leadership Award and completed the FBI’s Citizens Academy. She is a 2015 Leadership Atlanta Alum.
The Reverend Taryn Strauss, Acting Senior Minister, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Atlanta
Rev. Taryn Strauss was raised by civil rights activists in Chicago and spent her formative adolescent years learning at the feet of justice makers in Knoxville, Tennessee.
A lifelong theatre practitioner, she served as the founding artistic director of Scapegoat Theatre Collective in Asheville, NC, while working as the education director of the Western North Carolina AIDS Project. In 2015, Rev. Strauss graduated from Union Theological Seminary in New York City where she studied with Dr. Cornel West and Dr. James Cone, among other luminary faith and justice leaders. She now lives at the intersection of art, activism and faith, in Decatur, Georgia.
The Reverend Kevin Strickland, Bishop, Southeastern Synod, The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Prior to being elected as Bishop of the ELCA’s Southeastern Synod on June 2, 2019, Bishop Strickland served as the Assistant to the Presiding Bishop, Executive for Worship. He served in the churchwide office since August of 2014. Born and raised in Lexington, SC, Bishop Strickland is an honor graduate of Newberry College, Newberry, SC with a Bachelor of Arts in Religion and Philosophy and a minor in History. He also obtained a Master of Divinity from Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary, Columbia, SC.
In December of 2019, Newberry College awarded him a Doctor of Divinity. Bishop Strickland served as pastor of Holy Trinity Lutheran, Nashville, TN and St. Paul Lutheran, Maryville, TN prior and has served at Incarnation Lutheran, Columbia, SC, St. Philip’s Lutheran, Newberry, SC, Lutheran Church of Redeemer, Newberry, SC, and Mt. Tabor Lutheran, West Columbia, SC in the area of youth and family ministry. Bishop Strickland has served on various local and national non-profit boards and has a heart for justice and advocacy ministry. Bishop Strickland has been published in several worship and preaching journals and books.
The Right Reverend Robert C. Wright, Bishop, The Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta
Bishop Wright is the 10th bishop of The Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta and the first African American Episcopal bishop in Georgia. Bishop Wright was born Feb. 3, 1964, in a Roman Catholic orphanage in Pittsburgh, PA, and adopted at the age of nine months. After high school, he served five years as a U. S. Navy helicopter crew chief and search and rescue diver before entering Howard University in Washington, D.C. where he graduated in 1991 with a degree in history and political science. He worked as a child advocate for two D.C. mayors and for the Children’s Defense Fund. He later earned a certificate in biblical studies at Ridley Hall, Cambridge University, England, and a Master of Divinity from the Virginia Theological Seminary, Alexandria, VA. He was ordained a priest on Feb. 13, 1999.
Prior to moving to Atlanta, he was Canon Pastor and Vicar of the Congregation of St. Saviour at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York, NY, and served as chaplain of the Cathedral School in New York City. He received the Harvard Summer Leadership Certificate in 2006 and the Certificate in Pastoral Leadership from Oxford University, England, in 2007. After being ordained bishop in 2012, he was awarded honorary Doctor of Divinity degrees from the Virginia Theological Seminary and from the School of Theology at Sewanee: The University of the South. Prior to his election as bishop he was rector of historic St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Atlanta, Georgia, where he had served 10 years, a period that saw dramatic growth. He also serves as an adjunct professor at Virginia Theological Seminary. In 2015, Bishop Wright was named among the 100 Most Influential Georgians by GeorgiaTrend magazine.