SMUG-WA Staff Transitions - Spring 2020

As Executive Director, I am happy to say that – in this crisis period of great challenge and change – our staff members have really “stepped up” their game.  They – and we as an organization – continue to creatively adapt to the virtual human-touch starved environment that is, at least temporarily ours. One practical piece of the “good news” is that our staff has both come together and stayed together – even as we are apart! 

A reminder of two developments. The first is the news I shared in April of our hiring of Jane Bishop as our new Lead Caseworker in the NoVa-Arlington office.  As many of you know, Jane is no stranger to Samaritan Ministry.  She was on our Board and served as a Partner Rep from St. Stephen & the Incarnation Episcopal Church DC.  She served as a volunteer caseworker in both the SE DC-Anacostia office and as Interim Lead Caseworker in the Arlington office for almost 5 months before we hired her.  Our only regret here is that she must now step down from her leadership roles as Partner Rep and Board member which – I’m glad to say – is only because she has found “her passion and calling” in the Next Step casework she has come to love!  Jane comes to this role and SMUG-WA with a rich professional and ecclesiastical background that includes significant writing, project management, and leadership, notably at St. Stephen’s.  We will miss her regular presence on the Board and related bodies, even as we embrace her in this place where she is so needed and appreciated – already!  Jane began her full-time employment with us on Monday, April 13 . . . so I say, welcome, Jane, again as if for the first time!

With some sorrow I share that Charlie Briggs has discerned that this is a good time for him to step down as a Casework Associate.  In this role, Charlie spent most of his time in the Silver Spring office at Church of our Saviour with Lead Caseworker Kathy Staudt; he also assisted on a part-time basis in the NW office and, originally, in our SE DC-Anacostia office where he learned the casework process guided by Adrian Vaughn and others.  Charlie has been with SMUG WA for 5 years in one capacity or another and steps down from his role as Partner Rep for Christ Church, Kensington, where he and Partner Rep Doug Leavens played a critical part in bringing Christ Church along as a Partner Parish.  While we expect he will remain “in circulation” we will miss his thoughtful reflection on what we do and how we do it.  Charlie was a great asset, especially in the Silver Spring office, as we sought to strengthen the team there and attract more participants from Montgomery County.  Charlie’s resignation was effective April 12.  So, to you Charlie Briggs, we say, “Well done, good and faithful servant!”                          

Thank You, Staff!  David+