New Name, New Logo, New Board: A Season of Gratitude and Vision for Young Clergy Women International

In honor of the 10th Anniversary of The Young Clergy Women Project, the Board is thrilled to announce a new logo and a new organizational name: Young Clergy Women International. We are grateful for the vision and hard work of those who birthed this organization and nurtured it through its infancy (Weren’t those first steps amazing?) and first decade, and we are proud to claim the new name as our own as we continue the work of building up the youngest ordained women who serve Christ’s church around the globe.

As Young Clergy Women, we embody a certain tension. When we consider the long span of Christian history, we acknowledge that many Christian denominations have only recently begun to ordain women (and that many have yet to do so). Yet, a rich representation of women in the biblical story reminds us that Young Clergy Women are not a new phenomenon! Women have testified to the faithfulness of God with their actions: The Widow of Zarephath fed her household plus Elijah using a jar of oil that did not run out; a grateful woman broke a jar of nard over Jesus’ feet, thereby anointing him; Mary urged Jesus to turn vessels of water into wine at a wedding in Cana, and women throughout the Bible led the way in offering radical hospitality to friends and strangers alike. Scripture also reveals that women were the first messengers of the gospel. The Samaritan woman at the well left her own water jar when she ran back into town to tell everyone about Jesus. And Mary Magdalene, perhaps still holding the jar of spices that she, Mary, and Salome had taken to the tomb, was the first to shout, “I have seen the Lord!”

As we enter into our second decade over 1600 members strong, it is our hope and prayer that, like these women of scripture and the pitchers they carried, the women of YCWI will be supported and connected as we engage the holy task of preaching with our words and with our lives.

Into this new organization we welcome a new class of fabulous women to join in leadership as Board Members. Board Members generally serve a three-year term, and some women stay for a second three-year term after their initial service. We give thanks for the women who have served our organization faithfully and will roll off the board this year: Diana Carroll, Jamie Haskins, Julie Jensen, Amy Loving Austin, Erica Schemper, and Phyl Stutzman. Their gifts and skills have been a blessing to each one of us on the board and to the organization as a whole.

We are also thankful for each member of the board who will be returning this year: Kelly Boubel Shriver, Caroline Berardi, Sarah Hooker, Emily Brown, Austin Shelley, Molly James, Erin Klassen, Julie Hoplamazian, Meg Jenista, Sarah Moore, Lesley Ratcliff, Sarah Ross, Sarah Weisiger, Whitney Wilkinson, and Elizabeth Grasham.

You can find out more about all of our off-going and current board members on our board page.

Without further ado, we are excited to introduce our newest board members!

Dwalunda Alexander was born and raised in Houston, Texas, where she graduated from Texas Southern University with her Bachelors of Arts in Psychology in 2005. She moved to Fort Worth, Texas, in 2005 to attend Brite Divinity School on the campus of Texas Christian University where she received her Masters of Divinity with a concentration in Black Church Studies in December 2008. She is currently in her final stages of completing her Doctor of Ministry in Preaching from Lincoln Christian Seminary. Dwalunda is an ordained elder through the Rhema Fellowship of Churches and currently serves as a part of the worship ministry at Destiny Church in Fort Worth. She is also the founder of Antioch Kingdom Ministries and an educator with Fort Worth ISD. The best part of her days is spent loving, laughing, and enjoying life with her husband Jon and their four wonderful children.

Megan Clapp serves as Associate Pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church (ELCA) in Northwestern Minnesota. She is a graduate of Luther Seminary, and, along with her Masters of Divinity, received a degree in Children, Youth, and Family ministry. She was ordained in 2011. Megan is passionate about helping God’s people grow in faith that is connected to every part of life and equipping families to grow together in discipleship. Megan is married to Eric (who serves as Pastor in a nearby congregation) and they are parents to Lillian. She loves good books, delicious coffee, great conversations, and spending time with friends and family on any available patio, deck or lake.

Jo Kershaw is the parish priest of St Anne’s Wrenthorpe, in one of the south-eastern bits of the north of England. She grew up in Scotland, studied German at St Andrews and Oxford, where she completed a doctoral thesis on Mechthild of Magdeburg. She still loves all things mediaeval and thinks we could learn a thing or two from the writings of the period and its deep attention to the body and incarnation – even if, sometimes, it’s what not to do.  She trained for the Anglican priesthood at Westcott House, Cambridge, where she married her husband Jonathan, also a priest.  Her ministry has been spent in the North of England – her current context is famous for rhubarb and brass bands (luckily she likes both these things!). Jo loves knitting, photography, and science fiction and fantasy – though she’ll read most things.  She also loves to travel, and probably drinks too much coffee.

Jennifer Quanbeck is an ordained ELCA pastor who has served congregations in Washington and Montana. A graduate from Luther Seminary (M.Div 2008) and The College of William and Mary (B.S. 2003), Jen enjoys working with youth, health/fitness, and to-do-lists. An analytic at heart, but with a twist of artistic flair, Jen is motivated by opportunities for innovation and change. A lover of hiking, photography, and sunshine, Jen and her clergy spouse, Ben, share life with two young children and currently serve the same congregation in Billings, MT.

Elizabeth Riley is the Associate Rector of Trinity Church (Episcopal) in Menlo Park. Born and raised in Alaska, she migrated south for sunny California to attend Saint Mary’s College of California where she studied Theology and English. She then went on to receive her Masters of Divinity from Church Divinity School of the Pacific. Elizabeth especially enjoys justice ministry and interfaith work. She and her husband Scott spend most of their time chasing after their toddler, Eleanor, and look forward to welcoming their second child in winter of 2017. In her free time Elizabeth loves quilting, is an avid reader, and enjoys exploring the Bay Area with her family.

Bre Roberts is an ordained pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) and serves as co-pastor of St. Luke Lutheran Church in Albuquerque, New Mexico, alongside her husband Ryan. Together they also co-parent two charmingly ordinary pastors’ kids. Bre received a Bachelor of Science in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona and a Master of Divinity from Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley, California. Prior to living in the Land of Enchantment, she served as an associate pastor in Baltimore, Maryland. Bre speaks fluent nerd, has four tattoos, attends a gaming convention or Renaissance festival in costume whenever possible, is a novice quilter, and is also the caretaker for the family’s cats, Cow and Drizzt.

Here we go into the next decade. May God’s outpouring of love through this organization be transformed into acts of justice and mercy in the communities to which we are called throughout the world!

Welcoming New TYCWP Board Members

Each summer, TYCWP welcomes a new class of fabulous women to join in the leadership of the project as Board Members. Board Members generally come in to serve a three-year term, and some women stay for a second, three-year term after their initial service. We are so thankful for the women who have served TYCWP faithfully and will roll off the board this year: Diana Hodges-Batzka, Kelsey Grissom, and Brenda Lovick. Their gifts and skills have been a blessing to each one of us in this project.

We are also thankful for each member of the board who will be returning this year: Kelly Boubel Shriver (Co-Chair), Molly James (Co-Chair), Caroline Berardi (Vice Chair), Sarah Hooker (Treasurer), Emily Brown and Austin Shelley (Co-Managing Editors of Fidelia’s Sisters), Diana Carroll, Erin Klassen, Jamie Haskins, Julie Hoplamazian, Meg Jenista, Julie Jensen, Amy Loving Austin, Sarah Moore, Lesley Ratcliff, Sarah Ross, Erica Schemper, and Phyl Stuzman.

You can find out more about all of our off-going and current board members on our website. Read more

Meet the New TYCWP Board Members

Each year TYCWP welcomes a new class of fabulous, classy, wonderful women to join in the leadership of the project as Board Members. Board Members generally come in to serve a three-year term, and some women stay for a second, three-year term after their initial tour of duty. Starting this summer, TYCWP will look a bit different. Rather than dividing into two boards (Editorial and Community), we will instead be serving as one, cohesive board. We are looking forward to the ways our new organizational structure will help us grow as a project.

We are so thankful for the class of women who have served TYCWP faithfully and will roll off the board this year: April Berends, Christine Davies, Jessica Harren, and Mihee Kim-Kort. Their gifts and skills have been a blessing to each one of us in this project.

We are also thankful for each member of the board who will be returning for another year of service: Amy Loving, Brenda Lovick, Caroline Berardi, Diana Carroll, Diana Hodges-Batzka, Emily Brown, Erica Schemper, Jamie Haskins, Julie Jensen, Kelly Boubel Shriver, Kelsey Grissom, Lesley Ratcliff, Meg Jenista, Molly James, Phyl Stuzman, and Sarah Moore.

You can find out more about all of our off-going and current board members on our website.


And without further ado, please meet our newest board members! Welcome!

AustinS Austin Shelley: A native of South Carolina and a graduate of Columbia College, Austin Shelley received her Master of Divinity and Master of Theology degrees from Princeton Theological Seminary. She was ordained in the Presbyterian Church (USA) in October 2012. Before attending seminary, Austin taught art, Spanish, and Latin and was the director of the Academically Gifted Program at Chapin Middle School in South Carolina. She then served as Director of Youth Ministries at Lake Murray Presbyterian Church. While in seminary, she completed her field education at Trinity Episcopal Church where she fell in love with high church liturgy. She now serves as the Associate Minister for Christian Education at The Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill in Philadelphia. Austin is married to Mark who teaches European history and makes the perfect sweet tea. Together they parent three mostly wonderful children and eat Fruit Loops for dessert after the kids are in bed.

Erin KErin Klassen: Erin has been ordained in the United Church of Canada for 9 years and has served in team ministry in both rural and urban contexts. She received her M.Div. from what was then known as Queens Theological College (now Queens School of Religion). She is especially passionate about faith formation. Camping ministry kept her involved in the church and youth ministry leadership is where she first heard her call. Prior to entering the ministry, Erin studied and worked in the environmental sciences field.

Having been born and raised in Saskatchewan, she is a lifelong Roughrider (Canadian Football League) fan. Erin currently lives in Calgary, Alberta with her husband, two young daughters, and dog, MacGyver. They are all Rider fans too. Erin and her family love hiking and biking in the mountains. She is currently trying her hand at herding cats/coaching U4 soccer. Erin is an INFP and an expressive introvert according to Myers-Briggs, and a Four on the Enneagram.

Julie HopJulie Hoplamazian: The Reverend Julie M. Hoplamazian, a Philadelphia native, is the Associate Rector of Grace Church Brooklyn Heights (Episcopal). Julie moved from the cheesesteak to the cheesecake in 2006 and is proud to call both the City of Brotherly Love and the Big Apple “home.” Julie holds a B.S. in Music Education from Gettysburg College and spent several years teaching classroom music, private piano, and voice before attending Princeton Theological Seminary, where she received her M.Div. Before joining the Episcopal Church, Julie served in her church of origin, the Armenian Orthodox Church, as the Coordinator of College Ministry. In her spare time, Julie enjoys keeping up her creative side, practicing her pliés in the ballet studio and her scales at the piano, or trying new recipes in the kitchen with her husband, Jeremy. Julie and Jeremy are animal lovers and enjoy the company of their sidekick Takouhi (“queen” in Armenian), a rescued Australian Shepherd mutt.

KennenKennen Barber Ensz: Kennen Barber-Ensz hails from a small farming community in rural South Dakota. She attended Princeton Theological Seminary and was ordained in the PC(USA) as a teaching elder in 2012. She is currently serving in her first call as co-pastor alongside her husband at First Presbyterian Church of Estherville, IA. In her spare time, Kennen enjoys spending time with her two dogs, Ophelia (a chihuahua/dachshund) and Ruby (a cocker spaniel). She enjoys cycling and running outdoors in the summer, or yoga and Pilates indoors in the winter. She also enjoys reading and long, hot baths (reading and baths together are the best!). Her favorite parts of pastoral ministry include creating unique worship experiences and pastoral care. She is excited at the prospect of “being” the church in new and perhaps unconventional ways. Her greatest challenges of ministry include worrying about what other people think and not having enough time to get everything done.

Sarah HookerSarah Hooker: Sarah is pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Delhi, NY, a cozy farming community in the Catskill Mountains. She earned a BA from Macalester College and a MDiv from Columbia Theological Seminary. Her passions in ministry are pastoral care, mission, and being involved in the greater church. Sarah and her husband Chris keep busy with their ever-inquisitive son, enjoying traveling, hiking, and biking, throwing stones in the many local creeks, and cooking together.