Our Staff Team
The Reverend Arrington Chambliss, Executive Director
Arrington was the co-founder and former Executive Director of Life Together. Ordained to Episcopal Priesthood in 2004, she served five years as Assistant/Associate Rector with the Church of St. Andrew in Marblehead, MA. Prior to ordination, she founded No Ordinary Time, an organization that worked primarily with young activists, artists and faith-based leaders to integrate faith, spirituality and reflective practice into their social justice work. Past work includes the National Community Service field for Campus Outreach Opportunity League (COOL), a campus organizing project; and Project Leadership Education Employment Opportunities (LEEO), an organization aimed at channeling the leadership skills of gang-affiliated young men. She is particularly interested in the intersection between the inner work of contemplative prayer, reflection and healing and the outer work of nonviolent action, reconciliatory dialogue, and community organizing to bring about social change and with God's help, grow the kingdom of God on earth.
Arrington was born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She holds a master's degree from Harvard Divinity School. She lives in Jamaica Plain with her partner and seven-year old daughter.
Natalie Finstad, Director of Programs and Engagement
Natalie began her professional career as a community organizing fellow with Life Together, a program for young adults in the Episcopal Church. Here, Natalie experienced how organizing can simultaneously seek collective justice and develop an individual awareness of agency.
This inspired Natalie to lead organizing movements in Boston, New Zealand and Nairobi, Kenya. In Kenya, Natalie was an Episcopal Missionary and worked with young adults to found Tatua Kenya. Most recently, Natalie was the Executive Director for the Leadership Development Initiative. Natalie worked extensively as a teacher and consultant with organizations such as: The Harvard Kennedy School, St. Paul’s Richmond, Planned Parenthood, and the Global Episcopal Missionary Network. Natalie was a featured speaker at TEDx Beacon Street.
Natalie is a postulant for the Diaconate in the Diocese of Massachusetts and an Episcopal Church Fellow. Natalie enjoys traveling, staying active, hosting dinner parties, and reading memoirs.
Yani Burgos, Associate Director of Programs and Engagement
After being introduced to community organizing as a teenager, Yani has committed her life to community-led social change. For the last 10 years, she has explored how might different communities work together to build power, particularly among folks of color and LGBTQ+ communities. Prior to Episcopal City Mission, she worked with Mothers Out Front, supporting the mobilization of mothers, grandmothers, and other caregivers to ensure a swift transition away from fossil fuels. Yani received a BA in American Studies and Government from Smith College. She lives in Quincy, and enjoys finding innovative ways to use a slow cooker, chanting on the beach at sunrise, and searching for the latest and greatest in sneaker fashion trends.
ELLEN SHEEHY, CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Ellen Sheehy is a seasoned professional who has worked across sectors and industries in a variety of roles including Executive Director, Director of Business Operations, Project Manager, consultant, board member and volunteer. With graduate degrees in management and religion, Ellen helped start the not-for-profit organization The Partnership for Organ Donation, whose mission was to apply business principles and data-driven approaches to increase the number of organs for transplantation.
For more than 15 years, Ellen advised corporate, government, and not-for-profit organizations on a wide array of strategic and organizational issues. Clients included the New England Donor Services, the US Department of Health and Human Services, Princeton University's Student Volunteers' Council, Genzyme, and Biogen. Her most recent jobs include Executive Director for Voice Health Institute, a patient-driven not-for-profit organization promoting research, education, and public awareness of voice health issues, and, Director of Business Operations for Akashi Therapeutics, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company devoted to developing treatments for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
Complementing her professional endeavors, Ellen has long-standing and deep commitments to mending creation through direct service (community meals, food pantries, shelters, parish-level pastoral care) as well as involvement with organizations working for justice (Cooperative Metropolitan Ministries, Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, B-SAFE, New Haven Community Loan Fund).
Brother Michael Melendez, Deacon of Community Engagement
Br. Michael Paul Melendez was ordained deacon for the Episcopal Dioceses of Massachusetts in June of 2010. He served at the Cathedral Church of St Paul until 2016 where, beside liturgical services, he worked with the Monday lunch program and provided pro bono social services to parishioners in need. He is member of a small, dispersed Franciscan community called the Order of St. Francis. Professionally, he is a clinical social worker and social work educator who has had extensive experience with a number of nonprofits and agencies addressing social justice issues. He joins Episcopal City Mission for three years of service as Deacon of Community Engagement, beginning in September 2017
LILY LUO, LEAD TRAINER
Growing up, Lily watched too many episodes of the West Wing and dreamt of becoming the Asian female version of President Bartlett. Since then, she has recognized the immense beauty, power, and authority that lies outside formal institutions through community organizing. At Wellesley College she studied Political Science and English with a particular focus on the unfulfilled radical promise of American democracy and the power of transformative rebellion.
Prior to Episcopal City Mission, Lily worked at Massachusetts Senior Action Council as a Life Together fellow, supporting grassroots organizing led by seniors on issues of affordable housing, transportation, and healthcare. She has also led Life Together's worship team, focusing particularly on queer and feminist ways of worship. Lily enjoys cooking and baking as forms of showing love and writing poetry.
Dax Crocker, Lead Organizer
Dax W. Crocker is a U.S. Latino who as a child migrated to the U.S. during the Central American civil war. Migration runs through his veins. His ancestors migrated from Ireland to the U.S. in the late 1800s and settled in Guatemala. His hometown is Los Angeles, CA where he was ordained to the ministry in a Latino Pentecostal organization. After missionary work in Sweden, Italy, and Spain he came back to the U.S. and pastored churches in Providence, RI and Tucson, AZ. It was in Arizona where he witnessed U.S. citizen children being left in foster care when their parents were deported in the aftermath of SB-1070. As a result, he decided to go back to school to pursue education in social justice. This route took him to Yale where he earned a M.Div. with a focus on faith-based community organizing and a S.T.M in Political Theology.
Jocelin Thomas, Life Together Fellow/Programs Coordinator
Jocelin is a northeast native but a transplant to Boston. She graduated from the University at Buffalo in 2015 where she studied accounting. Following graduation, Jocelin began working in the public accounting industry. After a few years, she desired a career change. She was drawn to justice-oriented work, and felt a need for deep spiritual exploration and contemplation. Through this journey she has joined Episcopal City Mission and is thrilled to apply her skills and energy to ECM’s justice initiatives. Prior to ECM, Jocelin worked with Safe Havens Interfaith Partnership Against Domestic Violence, working to educate faith leaders on how to be a resource to victims and survivors in their congregations. Before that, Jocelin worked at Ernst & Young as alluded to previously. In her spare time, Jocelin enjoys hiking, climbing, and craft beer as well as many creative outlets including poetry, embroidery, percussion, and dance
Carol Koskelowski, Office Administrator
Carol Koskelowski is thrilled to join the ECM team as the office administrator. She has worked in advancement for Chicago Theological Seminary, Episcopal Divinity School and Boston Ballet. While caring for her family, Carol worked close to home for more than eight years as the Administrator of Grace Episcopal Church in Medford. At Grace Church she was mentored by the community, particularly by the Thursday volunteers and a diversity of Life Together Fellows who energized the parish with their skills and insights.
Carol attended Clark University and Chicago Theological Seminary. She enjoys reading about scientific discoveries, gardening and cooking for folks.
Dan Gelbtuch, Program Manager - Prophetic Leadership Development
Dan was born and grew up with his three siblings in Boston Massachusetts where we was raised in Greater Boston's Jewish Community including Solomon Schechter Day School, Temple Hillel Bnai Torah and Camp Yavneh. For High School, Dan attended Boston Latin School, then Wesleyan University where he majored in history and religion and finally he received a Master's Degree in Education from Queens College. Dan taught for three years in the New York City public school system teaching, and returned to Boston in 2007 to begin the Jewish Organizing Initiative where he received community organizing training and began his career as a youth organizer at Dorchester Bay Youth Force. For ten years, Dan was the Youth Force director and during this time co-founded the Youth Jobs Coalition. Most recently, Dan been interested in how to connect his spiritual path and his organizing work. He is currently exploring this and other key questions through is work at Episcopal City Mission and the Inside Out Wisdom and Action Project.
Carly Margolis, JOIN Organizing Fellow
Carly Margolis joins Episcopal City Mission as a fellow with the Jewish Organizing Institute and Network (JOIN). Carly spent the last two years in Charlottesville, Virginia, where she gained experience organizing for immigrant rights and racial justice. She also held the position of Program Manager at Mind & Life Institute, where she organized conferences on philosophy, science and society in the U.S. and Botswana. Carly graduated from Brown University with a double major in Classics and Contemplative Studies. She was admitted to Phi Beta Kappa and received grants for research and contemplative practice. Carly is interested in using contemplative practice as a tool to sustain movement work and has trained in the Courage of Care model of compassionate leadership. She looks forward to growing in community with other organizers and to discovering the dance and music scenes in Boston.