Sometimes, it seems to us at Quaker Voluntary Service that we have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to our staff. QVS staff are dedicated to supporting young adults during moments of transition and transformation. The joys and sorrows that come from this close-knit team are two sides of the same coin: we have a staff team that enjoys one another, that supports one another, and sometimes staff are ready to move on and we celebrate with them (although we cry on the inside).
Saying Goodbye to Staff
At this time we are saying goodbye to Liz Nicholson. Liz has been with QVS for seven out of the last eight years. She served as a QVS Fellow in the very first QVS cohort in 2012-2013. After her QVS year, she continued working with her site placement, the Frazer Center. In 2014, she joined the QVS staff team as the Atlanta Coordinator. Throughout her time with QVS Liz stepped into a number of national and administrative roles: helping plan and orchestrate National Orientation, facilitating trainings and workshops, recruiting Fellows, and most recently as the Communications Coordinator. In this role, Liz has expanded QVS’s visibility, outreach, and presence online. She performs each of these roles with the same grounded Love that she lives her whole life.
We are thrilled that Liz has spent so many years with us here at QVS. We are also thrilled to announce that she is participating in the Masters in Peace and Social Transformation program at Earlham School of Religion. Liz is returning to her hometown of Richmond, Indiana and will be learning and growing with Friends. We look forward to having her in the QVS community forever more (as both an alum of the program and a staff alum). Thank you, Liz. We miss you. Thank goodness gracious we get to keep you in our lives.
Additionally, as we announced earlier in the summer, we are also saying goodbye to Caitlin Churchill. Caitlin served as our Portland Coordinator for the past two years.
Caitlin is leaving our staff team at the end of July, and we are so excited that she will be joining the team at a fellow Quaker organization, Right Sharing of World Resources. She’s accepted a position as the Communications Director — so you should follow their work! Caitlin, thank you for your questions, vulnerability, thoughtfulness, curiosity, and the most delicious granola amongst other gifts you’ve shared with us. We will miss you terribly, and wish you all the best in these last weeks and in your new work!
Welcoming New Staff
Meanwhile, we have the incredible fortune to welcome two new staff!
Rachel Logan Wood, or Woody (as she likes to go by), is the incoming Portland Coordinator. She grew up attending Community Friends Meeting – Quakers in Cincinnati, OH. In her most formative, awkward teen years, she always felt like she fit in on the Quaker youth service trips through Ohio Valley Yearly Meeting. These volunteer trips were the first she was exposed to the intersection of Quaker spirituality and service. Woody then attended Earlham College, a Quaker College in Richmond, IN, and majored in Environmental Policy with a minor in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. It was there and through the Quaker Fellows Scholarship Program at Earlham she began identifying as a non-theist Friend, rooting her Quakerism in the SPICES testimonies and living through them in her daily life. After college, she deepened her understanding of spirit-led service work as a QVS Fellow for the Portland 2017-2018 year and is now so excited to join the QVS staff to continue her work with QVS!
Last, but certainly not least, we welcome another QVS alum to our staff. Rachael Carter is the incoming Atlanta Coordinator. Rachael is a recent alumnae of QVS as a Fellow in the Atlanta house, which was her primary introduction to Quaker practice. She is honored to be able to deepen her work with QVS. She’s also excited to stay connected with Partnership for Southern Equity (a racial equity organization in Atlanta and her site placement during QVS).
Rachael came into interfaith work in her years in undergrad at Ursinus College studying Politics, Peace and Social Justice, International Relations and Africana, African American Studies. Since then, Rachael has spent time researching ecotheology in the Black community and learning to understand its connections to other faith and spiritual practices. Rachael is passionate about plants and the natural world, cooking as a healing practice and understanding various systems. She is interested in further exploring the intersection of religion, food, and employment and is hoping to continue this exploration with further study. She also enjoys biking, taking care of her many plants, and listening to podcasts.