CHR COMMISSIONERS

PghCHR COMMISSIONERS

Commissioner FAQ - Coming soon!

 

 

Interested in becoming a Commissioner? Email a resume and cover letter explaining your interest to: human.relations@pittsburghpa.gov

The Rev. Liddy Barlow is a creative and passionate servant of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church in all its complicated diversity. She works to bring Christians of all traditions together to make visible our true unity as the Body of Christ.

 In April 2014, Rev. Barlow became the first woman to be installed as Executive Minister of Christian Associates of Southwest Pennsylvania. She reports to the Council of Bishops and Judicatory Executives, who represent 28 Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox church bodies throughout greater Pittsburgh. As Executive Minister, Rev. Barlow sets a vision for Christian Associates and manages all of the organization's projects and relationships.

​​Under her leadership, Christian Associates of Southwest Pennsylvania has made unanimous public statements on ending racism and welcoming refugees. She is a key organizer of public worship services and events, including interfaith services in support of immigrants, mourning lives lost at Mother Emanuel in Charleston, SC, and standing against bigotry after the demonstrations in Charlottesville, VA. Rev. Barlow edits Christian Associates’ publications, including The Call newsletter, The Word in Our Voices series of sermon collections, and worship resources produced in partnership with community organizations.

​In the aftermath of the anti-Semitic massacre at Tree of Life Synagogue on October 27, 2018, Rev. Barlow offered a clear voice of compassion and hope, representing the Christian community at numerous interfaith and civic events. With partners of many faith traditions, notably the Center for Loving Kindness and Civic Engagement at the Jewish Community Center, she convened interfaith spiritual leaders from 9 world religions and 24 Christian denominations for the "We Have to Talk" initiative, which continues to promote collegiality and healing.

 Through Christian Associates' ministry of connectedness, Rev. Barlow holds a variety of leadership roles in local organizations, serving as vice president of the City of Pittsburgh's Commission on Human Relations, chair of the Allegheny County Emergency Food & Shelter Board, steering team member for All for All, and board member for the Foundation of HOPE. She formerly served as secretary of the Western PA Regional VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters) and as a board member at Pittsburgh Pastoral Institute. She has been active in the International Association of Women Ministers for over a decade, and served as Program Chair for the 2019 Centennial Assembly. In 2015, she traveled to Israel and Palestine in the inaugural journey of Interfaith Partners for Peace.

 Rev. Barlow frequently preaches and speaks at churches and community organizations throughout our region. Her publications include columns in The Christian Century and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; one of her sermons was featured in a Sojourners project.

​On June 24, 2019, Rev. Barlow received an Antoinette Brown Award for trailblazing leadership in the United Church of Christ. She was recognized as "40 Under 40" leader by Pittsburgh Magazine. She received a Circle of Courage award from BCC Ministries, a Dialogue Award from the Turkish Cultural Center, and the Volunteer Mitzvah Award from the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh.

​Rev. Barlow is ordained in the United Church of Christ and serves as secretary of the Penn West Conference Board of Directors. She served for six years as chair of the Pittsburgh Association Committee on Ministry, and was a member of the Habakkuk Group, a national United Church of Christ task force that rewrote the church's Manual on Ministry.

 Rev. Barlow grew up in Keene, New Hampshire and attended Mount Holyoke College. After teaching sixth grade in Rocky Mount, North Carolina with the Teach for America program, she earned a Master of Divinity degree from Andover Newton Theological School. Prior to her ministry at Christian Associates, Rev. Barlow served congregations in downtown Pittsburgh and North Huntingdon. She lives in Pittsburgh with her husband Gregory, a robotics entrepreneur, and their two young children.

 Rev. Barlow welcomes invitations to preach, teach, and speak about the ministries of Christian Associates. 

 

Biography Coming Soon!

Biography Coming Soon!

Rabbi Sharyn H. Henry has been rabbi of the Rodef Shalom congregation since 2004. Her rabbinic focus is social action, inclusion, and worship. Rabbi Henry was presented with a Doctor of Divinity in 2013 by the Hebrew Union College for 25 years teaching “the faith, culture and ethics of Reform Judaism”.

With Rodef Shalom since 1999, she first served as the Religious School Principal with that position evolving into Youth and Education Director. Prior to joining RSC, Rabbi Henry held the positions of Rabbi/Educator at Temple Ohav Shalom in Allison Park, PA and Assistant Rabbi at The Temple – Congregation B’nai Jedudah in Kansas City, MO, where she was the city’s only female rabbi.

She received her Rabbinic Ordination (1988) from HUC-JIR with a Master’s in Hebrew Letters (MAHL, 1987).  She earned her undergraduate degree, with honors, in Psychology (1980) at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Rabbi Henry was recognized by Community Living and Support Services (CLASS) with a Humanitarian Award for her advocacy of equality and inclusion.  Additionally, she is a member of the Community Day School Board of Trustees.

Sharyn and her husband, Dennis Grinberg, have 2 sons, Avi and Asher.  They make their home in Squirrel Hill.

Wasiullah (Wasi) Mohamed is a life-long Pennsylvania resident. He was born in Harrisburg, raised in Enola, and moved to Pittsburgh in 2011 to attend the University of Pittsburgh.
 
After serving as the Director of Islamic Center of Pittsburgh Food Pantry for two years, Wasi was selected to be ICP’s Executive Director in 2015. In this position, Wasi worked to empower, educate, and unite the diverse community in Western PA through social services and outreach programs. From 2016 to 2018, Wasi was the Executive Director of Emgage PA, where he coordinated political education and organizing activities throughout the commonwealth. Wasi currently is the Pittsburgh Director of Community Entrepreneurship at Forward Cities, national capacity-building and learning network working within and between cities and micropolitans to create more inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem development. Wasi will be working with FC the next two years to make Pittsburgh a place that will no longer leave minority entrepreneurs under-resourced, under-connected, and under-represented.  


In 2016, he was appointed by Mayor Bill Peduto to the Commission on Human Relations (protecting civil rights) and Welcoming Pittsburgh Commission (encouraging immigrant and refugee inclusion), he was elected chair of both. He was appointed by Governor Tom Wolf to serve on the Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs, and he has recently been appointed chair. Also in 2018, Wasi was elected to the ACLU Pennsylvania State Board of Directors. 

Academics:
BS in Neuroscience, University of Pittsburgh '17
BA in Philosophy, University of Pittsburgh '17
BA in History and Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh '17
Masters in Public Management, Carnegie Mellon University '21

Biography Coming Soon!

Sonya M. Toler joined the Propel Schools team in January 2018. She works to position Propel as an
innovative leader in public education and oversees enrollment efforts for the 13 public charter
schools that make up the Propel Schools network.


Before Propel, Ms. Toler was the Public Information Officer/spokesperson for the City of Pittsburgh
Public Safety Department, the Communication Director for the successful campaign of Pittsburgh
Mayor William Peduto, Executive Director of Governor Ed Rendell’s African American Advisory
Commission, and Communications Director for the Allegheny Conference on Community
Development. Ms. Toler has numerous awards from her time as a Pittsburgh-based journalist. She
earned a BA in Journalism and Communications at Point Park University and is working on an
Executive MBA through Smartly Institute.

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