Get to Know Us

Board

President: Dr. Sofia Grewal, M.D., Sikhism
Physician in private practice

Vice President: Jack Sisk, Hinduism
Founder and President of Living Insights Center

Treasurer: Ali Durhan, Islam
Director of Outreach and Community Engagement, Turkish American Society of MO

Secretary: Ann Miller, Presbyterian Church (USA)
Leader of Interfaith Partnership of St. Charles

Cabinet Chair: Maharat Rori Picker Neiss, Orthodox Judaism
Executive Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of St. Louis

Cabinet Alternate: Rev. Rodrick Burton, Missionary Baptist Churches
Pastor, New Northside Missionary Baptist Church

At-large Members:

Marvin Anderson, Disciples of Christ Church
Senior Vice President, U.S. Trust, Bank of America

Dr. Bahar Bastani, M.D., Shia Islam
Internist in Nephrology, Saint Louis University Hospital

Rev. Jake DeNap, United Church of Christ
Chaplain at Brooking Park

Dr. Helal Ekramuddin, M.D., Sunni Islam
Vice President, Islamic Foundation of Greater St. Louis

Leonard Frankel, J.D., Conservative Judaism
Partner at Frankel, Rubin, Klein, Siegel, Payne, and Pudlowski, P.C.

Rev. Lana Gilbert, Community of Christ
Leader of Metro East Interfaith Partnership

Margaret Gillerman, Reform Judaism
Newspaper reporter

Rev. Dr. Deborah Goldfeder, Episcopal Church
Deacon, Missouri Diocese

Dr. Gurparkash Grewal, M.D., Sikhism
Physician in private practice

Evangelist Kathy Hamilton-Thomas, African Methodist Episcopal Church
St. James AME Church

Imam Muhamed Hasic, Sunni Islam
Medina Masjid of the Bosnian Community

Dr. Ghazala Hayat, Sunni Islam
Professor of Neurology, St. Louis University

Venerable Jue Huang, Mahayana Buddhism
Fo Guang Shan Chinese Buddhist Center

Dr. Valerie Karras, Th.D., Ph.D., Greek Orthodox Christianity
Professor Eden Theological Seminary

David Landesman, Bahá’í
President of Lawson Screen and Digital Products

Rev. Dr. John Loum, Lutheran Church
Director, Ethnic Immigrant Institute of Theology at Concordia Seminary

Dr. Billie Mayo, Ed.D., Baha’i
Owner, Educational Equity Consultants

Dr. Javier Orozco, OFS, Ph.D., Roman Catholic Christianity
Executive Director, Human Dignity and Intercultural Affairs for the Archdiocese of St. Louis

Dr. David Oughton, Roman Catholicism
Retired Professor of Religion, Saint Louis University

Nancy Robinson, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Communication Strategist

Shima Rostami, Shia Islam
Researcher for Coalition Against Human Trafficking

Rev. Daigaku Rumme, Soto Zen Buddhism
Confluence Zen Center

Harvey Schneider, J.D., Reform Judaism
Retired Attorney, Helfrey, Neiers & Jones, P.C.

Staff

For more information about Interfaith Partnership, you can call our office at (314) 918-2541, email us, or send us a message through our Contact Form.

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Rev. James Poinsett

Executive Director

Jim Poinsett has served as the Executive Director of Interfaith Partnership of Greater St. Louis since November 2019. He feels passionate about the unique ability of St. Louis faith communities to build powerful relationships through collaboration and cooperation, and overcome polarity and fear with understanding, engagement, and advocacy.

Jim came to Interfaith Partnership STL after serving 12 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA) with congregations in New York, Philadelphia, and St. Louis. Prior to entering the ministry, Jim spent 11 years working in politics, primarily as a lobbyist to state legislatures and Congress.

Jim’s previous ecumenical and interfaith work includes serving as the Vice President of the New York State Council of Churches, and serving on Religious Leaders Council of Interfaith Philadelphia.

Jim holds a Master of Divinity degree from Yale University Divinity School. He received a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ball State University, and studied at the Institute of Organizational Management at Notre Dame University.

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Erin Silva Fisher

Director of Community Engagement and Communications

Erin Silva Fisher serves as the Director of Community Engagement and Communications and is responsible for strengthening community through the development of IPSTL’s wide array of programming.

Erin has a breadth of experience coordinating events, exhibits, and other educational programs. In 2014, while working at Grand Valley State University, located near Grand Rapids, Michigan, Erin attended an Interfaith Thanksgiving Dinner, and her world expanded. While at Grand Valley, she supported a variety of interfaith programs, including the production of a four-part video series exploring religious celebrations from different faith traditions.

A St. Louis native who was raised Roman Catholic, she earned a bachelor’s degree in communication studies from Truman State University and a master’s degree in library and information science from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Community engagement and a commitment to justice inform all that she does, both professionally and personally. Erin and her husband have two young children–who inspire her support of and participation in efforts to build a more equitable future for our region’s youth.

Erin is eager to support and strengthen a religious, spiritual, and secular ecosystem where curiosity, courage, care, and delight can flourish.

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Gwyneth Henke

Executive Administrator

Gwyneth Henke joined the Interfaith Partnership as Executive Administrator in May 2020. She grew up in St. Louis and graduated from Washington University with a degree in religious studies and writing. Raised Roman Catholic, Gwyneth became interested in comparative religion and interfaith activism through the groundbreaking research of Huston Smith and, more recently, Saba Mahmood. Her studies have focused largely on Christianity and Islam, and she is particularly interested in monasticism and conversion narratives.

At WashU, she wrote a thesis entitled “‘I Am Sorry For This Language’: Thomas Merton, Contemplation, and the Writing Life,” which explores Catholic monk and prolific author Thomas Merton’s relationship with writing in the context of his Trappist vows. Upon graduating, she received the department’s Huston Smith Award for Academic Excellence in Religious Studies. For two years, she worked as a student office assistant in the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics, where she helped facilitate events and speaker series, assisted faculty, and contributed to general office upkeep.

A longtime admirer of Interfaith Partnership, she is thrilled to join the staff and to help the IP team in their work with the region’s many religious communities.

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