IX Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts
The Rt. Rev. Dr. Douglas John Fisher
Bishop Doug Fisher was ordained and consecrated bishop on December 1, 2012. He has long been committed to inclusivity, congregational development, social justice and the “greening” of churches. Read Bishop Fisher’s biography or the latest post from The Bishop’s Blog.
Canon to the Ordinary
The Rev. Pamela J. Mott The Rev. Pamela J. Mott was called to serve as Canon to the Ordinary for the Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts on August 1, 2013. In that capacity she serves along with Canon Rich Simpson. Pam’s primary responsibility is Deepening Communities of Practice (known elsewhere as Congregational Development). Prior to this she served as Rector of St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, where, among other accomplishments, she developed a project for sustainable living and initiated an innovative service for families with young children. Before coming to Rhode Island, Pam was Canon Pastor of Trinity Cathedral in Portland, Oregon, where she provided pastoral care for a 2,000-member parish. She also served as Rector of St. Eustace Church, Lake Placid, NY and Curate/Associate Rector of Grace Church,Millbrook, New York.
Pam graduated from State University of New York, Fredonia, received her Certificate of Anglican Studies from Berkeley Divinity School and earned a Masters of Divinity from Yale Divinity School. She was ordained Deacon and Priest in the Diocese of New York.
Her hobbies include fiber arts, exploring the connection between spiritual practice and creativity and lots of walking in beautiful places. “Open the doors and windows for the movement of the spirit, seek Christ in all persons, find joy in the Gospel and spread it around,” says Pam.
Email Pam Call Pam: (413) 737-4786 ext 119
Canon to the Ordinary
The Rev. Dr. Richard Simpson
The Rev. Dr. Richard Simpson has served as Canon to the Ordinary in our diocese June 1, 2013. In that capacity he serves alongside Canon Pam Mott. Rich’s primary responsibility is Transition Ministry. Prior to joining Bishop Fisher’s executive team, Rich served as the fifth rector of St. Francis Church in Holden – a position he held for a little more than fifteen years. Before coming to Holden in 1998, he served for eight years in the Diocese of Connecticut; four as Associate Rector at Christ and Holy Trinity Church in Westport and four as the Protestant Campus Minister at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain. He was born and raised in Hawley, Pennsylvania in the United Methodist Church and holds degrees from Georgetown University (AB), Drew Theological School (M.Div.), Princeton Theological Seminary (Th.M.) and Columbia Theological Seminary (D.Min.) He and his wife, Hathy, live in Worcester. They have two adult sons, Graham and James. Rich writes a blog on contemporary faith called, Rich’s Ruminations.
Email Rich Call Rich: (413) 737-4786 ext 117
Canon for Mission Resources
Steve serves as Treasurer of the Diocese and manages the support staff at Diocesan House. Steve is staff liaison to Diocesan Council’s Budget and Financial Planning Committee and Human Resources Committee. He is the congregation’s liaison to the Standing Committee for property matters. He also functions as property manager for the diocese. He serves as treasurer of the Massachusetts Council of Churches, and is a board member of the Episcopal Church Building Fund and the chair of the Planning Team for their annual “Buildings for a New Tomorrow” symposium. He joined the Bishop’s staff in 2008 after many years running a local, family-owned business. He enjoys sailing, skiing, hiking, and occasionally finds the opportunity to go on silent meditation retreats. He is married to Susan, and they have three children in college: Luke, Erik and Jessica. Steve is happy to assist parishes with their finance and building issues upon request.
Email Steve Call Steve: (413) 737-4786 ext 121
Trustees of the Diocese
Executive Director of the Trustees
Norman “Mick” Kalber
Mick oversees the day-to-day operations of the Trustees, a separate corporation from the Diocese, which serves as fiduciary for the invested funds of parishes and the Diocese. Born and raised in Coatesville, Pennsylvania, Mick holds degrees in economics from Penn State (BS) and the University of Hartford (MA). Prior to working with the Trustees, he held positions in the areas of market research, sales forecasting and operations research with the Hartford Insurance Group, Heublein, Amtrak, Converse, American Tourister and Veryfine Products. Mick and his wife, Barbara, live in Sturbridge and are long time parishioners of Holy Trinity Church in Southbridge. They have two adult daughters and three grandchildren.
Email Mick Call Mick: (413) 737-4786, ext. 114
Communications Director | Missioner
The Rev. Vicki Ix
Vicki joined the Bishop’s staff in 2014. Previously, as Vocation Director in a monastic community, Vicki developed brochures, newspaper and web-based advertisements, and collaborated on a general plan of marketing for the community. Vicki has written for a variety of faith-based publications including The National Catholic Reporter and maintained “God Is Always More” – an inclusive, ecumenical blog ministry – until 2016. In 2018 Vicki became vicar of St. John’s Episcopal Church, Ashfield.
Email Vicki Call Vicki: (413) 737-4786 ext 124
Diocesan Support Staff
Executive Assistant to the Bishop
Lainey joined the staff in the Fall of 2011. She is often the first contact when calling or visiting the Diocesan office. She is responsible for coordinating meeting space and hospitality needs for diocesan committee meetings and other events such as Diocesan Convention and Parish Leadership Day. Lainey is the contact for the licensing of Eucharistic Ministers and Eucharistic Visitors as well as the liaison to the Bement/Waterfield Educational Grants committee.
Lainey is a member of the Church of the Good Shepherd in West Springfield where she has been the secretary for 25 years. She also worships at All Saint’s in South Hadley where her husband, Terry, is a Deacon. They have 2 married children, Bryan & Liz, a granddaughter, Sienna and a new grandson, Maxwell. Lainey enjoys spending time with her family and 2 dogs and relaxing in the warm sunshine on a beach whenever possible.
Email Lainey Call Lainey: 413-737-4786 ext 123
Administrative Assistant to the Canons to the Ordinary and the Executive Director of the Trustees
Karen Warren joined Diocesan staff in 2008 and serves as Administrative Assistant to the Canons to the Ordinary and the Executive Director of the Trustees. She also supports the Safe Church Officer and serves as Assistant Secretary of Council and Convention. She assists with the Fresh Start Program, Deployment, Clergy Conference, Congregational Development Investment Grants, and other grant programs in support of clergy. In addition, she manages the Diocesan Archives. Karen has over 40 years of administrative experience and is a 2005 graduate of the Ada Comstock Scholars program at Smith College. Hobbies include reading great literature, walking, biking and enjoying time with friends. She is a long-time member of the Presbyterian Church.
Email Karen Call Karen: (413) 737-4786 ext 118
Assistant for Office Administration
Melanie joined the staff in March of 2019. Her position includes assisting the administrative staff with an assortment of office responsibilities along with hospitality. Prior to joining the team, she worked as a office assistant for 10 years in both a medical and business office setting.
Call Melanie: (413) 737-4786, ext 110
Assistant for Communications and Payroll Administration
Alison came to us in 2017 as a part-time assistant to help create a digital archive of our diocesan filing systems. During that time, Alison was asked to assist in other areas, specifically with diocesan communications and assistance with payroll administration. As a result, Alison has joined us as a full-time member of diocesan staff. She assists Vicki Ix with aspects of the Communications Ministry, and Susan Olbon with the administration of the diocesan payroll.
HR, Finance & Information Technology
Human Resources Manager for the Diocese
Prior to joining the Diocese, Susan worked in the areas of pension administration and trust account/investment management. As Human Resources Manager, the major areas of responsibility are all aspects of payroll and benefits administration. Susan can offer assistance in the areas of payroll, clergy and lay pension plans, medical, dental and life insurance. She is also a contact for questions concerning property, liability, workers compensation and boiler/machinery coverage for each parish. Email Susan Call Susan: (413) 737-4786 ext 120
Kim joined the diocesan staff on October 1st and we welcome the addition of a Financial Controller to our Financial Services team. Kim has 25+ years of hands-on experience as a director of finance, accounting, and administration in the non-profit sector. In that role, Kim works directly with Steve Abdow and Esther Barker in the day-to-day financial operations. Email Kim
Esther joined the diocesan staff after having served in accounting manager positions in both for-profit and not-for-profit organizations. She is responsible for the diocesan general ledger accounting and financial reporting and works with the Financial Officer in matters relating to budgeting and the development of internal controls and financial policies and procedures. Esther is available to provide advice to parish treasures about accounting and budget matters.
Email Esther Call Esther: (413) 737-4786 ext 115
Missioner for Creation Care
The Rev. Dr. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas
Margaret represents the diocese at environmental conferences and other gatherings so the Church has a seat at the table for one of the most crucial issues of our time. She speaks and preaches on our call to protect God’s Creation, leads retreats on spiritual resilience and resistance, and provides resources for the diocese to learn, pray, act and advocate on behalf of God’s Creation. She reports on climate action opportunities and builds ecumenical, interfaith and secular partnerships. She also serves as Missioner for Creation Care in the Mass. Conference, United Church of Christ. She says, “I hope to inspire and support the Diocese of Western Massachusetts as we seek to honor the sacredness of Creation and to make a robust, faithful and coordinated response to climate change. I am very interested in the ways that religious faith can move us beyond fear, hopelessness or despair as we face the reality of climate change. I also believe that religious communities and leaders have an important role to play in shaping this country’s growing climate movement.” The Rev. Dr. Bullitt-Jonas was a parish priest for 25 years, including nine years as Priest Associate at Grace Church, Amherst, MA. She received a B.A. in 1974 from Stanford University, a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in 1984 from Harvard University, and a Masters of Divinity in 1988 from Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, MA. Visit her website: RevivingCreation.org.
Email Margaret Call Margaret: (413) 341-3566
Missioner for Servant Leadership
The Rev. Jennifer Gregg
Jennifer has been the Director of the Berkshire Servant Leadership Center since its beginning in 2007 and founding Vice President of BIO, Berkshires Interfaith Organizing, in 2014. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from Elmira College, and a Masters in Divinity from Berkley Divinity School at Yale University. She currently lives in Pittsfield Massachusetts with her husband, and two daughters.
The Rev. Dr.Hilary Bogert-Winkler
Hilary has been active in youth ministry since her own days growing up in a youth in the Diocese of Kentucky, where she served on the Diocesan Youth Council and worked at All Saints Camp throughout high school. She served as youth minister at Grace Episcopal Church in Amherst after she was ordained in 2009, and joined the diocesan staff as Interim Christian Formation Missioner in June 2014. In August 2015, she became Diocesan Youth Missioner. In this role, Hilary is working with the youth and adults of our diocese to build a diocesan youth ministry program. She has led young people from Western Massachusetts to events such as the Episcopal Youth Event, Winterlight, and the Lift Every Voice Freedom Ride pilgrimage in North Carolina. Hilary is also working on a Ph.D. in history at the University of Connecticut, where she is writing a dissertation about the Prayer Book and the Church of England in mid-seventeenth century England.
Missioner to the African Community of Worcester
The Rev. John Edgar Freeman
Appointed Missioner to the Worcester African Community in October 2016, Edgar also serves as Assistant Priest at St. Matthew’s Parish, Worcester. Baptized into the Episcopal Church of Liberia, after graduating from St. John’s Episcopal High School he worked for the Liberian Government. During the Liberian Civil War, Edgar lived in Waterloo Refugee Camp in Freetown, Sierra Leone, for seven years with his family and became a lay pastor to approximately 150 Episcopalians in the refugee camp. A Canadian social worker noted his efforts and commitment; and arranged for him to attend the Anglican Seminary in Freetown, from which he graduated, under the auspices of the Anglican Church of Canada. St. John the Evangelist, Port Hope, Ontario, supported his family, while Edgar attended seminary and he and his family continued to live in the refugee camp. Upon returning to Liberia, Edgar worked as Dean of Students at the B. W. Harris Episcopal School and was ordained deacon in 1999 and priest in the ECL in 2004. Edgar served a number of urban and rural parishes and churches throughout Liberia. He immigrated to the US in 2013, becoming a US citizen on 2017.
Missioner for Latino/Hispanic Ministries
The Rev. José Reyes
The Rev. José Reyes grew up in Springfield, Massachusetts and received a BA from Williams College with a major in Psychology and a concentration in Latina/o Studies in 2007. Following his undergraduate studies, he worked as an Elder Protective Services Case Manager and later as a Case Manager for the Mental Health Association during which he decided to pursue ordination to the priesthood. He went to Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia receiving his M. Div. degree in 2015. He has served as the Head Pastor of San Marcos Episcopal Church in Alexandria, Virginia and Associate Rector of All Saints Episcopal Church in Worcester, MA. José loves the outdoors, is an avid runner and enjoys playing the guitar, piano and drums.
Officers & Directors
Diocesan Intake Officer
The Rev. Dr. Molly Scherm
Molly serves and the Diocesan Intake Officer for both concerns relating to suspected misconduct under our Safe Church Policy, and for any matter involving clergy misconduct. It is her responsibility in receiving reports of concern to listen respectfully, offer pastoral care and response, and ensure that appropriate processes for accountability are followed. Molly served as rector of Christ Church in Rochdale, priest-in-charge at St. Andrew’s, Turners Falls. Currently, Molly serves as associate rector at Saints James and Andrew, and lives in Greenfield. Before entering parochial ministry she spent over thirty years in independent school teaching and administration. Ordained in 1978 in the Diocese of New York, she holds both M.Div. and D.Min. degrees from the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Safe Church Officer
The Rev. Tanya R. Wallace
Tanya trains and certifies diocesan staff, clergy and volunteers in the Safe Church program. She serves as rector of All Saints’, South Hadley and as Director of the Lawrence House Service Corps.
Cathedral Music Director
Bob Hansler is coming to us from St. John’s Episcopal Church in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Prior to St. John’s, he had served as organist at First Congregational Church in Hatfield and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Tacoma, Washington. He has also given performances as an organist, pianist, and harpsichordist throughout the region. Originally from Tacoma, Washington, Bob holds a master’s in music from the University of Victoria and a bachelor’s from Pacific Lutheran University, where he studied organ with Paul Tegels. He is an Associate of the American Guild of Organists (AAGO). As a composer of chamber music, his work has been performed throughout the country and internationally in concert and festival settings, and it has been recognized by the Canadian University Music Society (1st prize, 2013). In addition to his work at St. John’s in Williamstown, he has worked locally at the Community Music School of Springfield and the Williston Northampton School.
Director of the Building Bridges Veterans Initiative
The Rev. Christopher Carlisle
Chris is Special Assistant to the Bishop for Special Projects and Director of the veterans ministry initiative, “Building Bridges.” Having spent twenty-five years in campus ministry, Chris is now dedicated to veterans ministry initiatives, outdoor Christian communities, and the innovation of new expressions of “church” in the Diocese of Western Massachusetts.
Associate Director, Building Bridges
Mr. Chad Wright
Chad Wright serves as the assistant director of Building Bridges and the site director for the luncheon in Greenfield. Chad is currently finishing up a bachelors in social work from Elms College. Chad is a veteran with a passion for community service.