“I was born in Chicago, the second oldest of twelve (6 brothers and 5 sisters). Being from a large family shaped my life…
When I was 13 years old, my Dad’s job as a book peddler took us to Africa where we lived on a farm outside of Johannesburg during the era of apartheid. There was nothing subtle about this institutionalized racism. At our local parish, I met for the first time people who were breaking the law because the laws were unjust…I discovered that my Dad, who invited African artists to our home, was warned that he could be expelled, if he continued in his ways…I began to understand that what organizing was all about. I learned that there is a huge difference between treating a person with dignity and fighting to change systems and that both are essential.”
Mary spent much of her professional career directing various Archdiocesan social justice offices, co-authored a book, Moving Faith into Action (Paulist Press, 1990) , a facilitator’s guide to organized congregations and parishes for social justice ministry, and also spent 10 years as the Director for the Campaign for Human Development in Chicago, funding organized groups addressing the root causes of poverty.
Since 1999, Mary has been a full time consultant building the capacity of nonprofit organizations and their leaders to become the best they can be while discovering the best of who they are. Much of Mary’s work is centered around leadership coaching, team building, board of director development and strategic planning and facilitation. Mary has become a master diagnostician moving clients from complexity to clarity with amazing speed, working to find and work with the energy and fire within leaders.
Mary holds a Doctorate in Ministry, with a concentration in executive leadership and organizational development and lives in Chicago.