Friends Center Mission and Board

Friends Center Corporation, founded in 1972, owns and manages the Quaker building complex at 15th and Cherry Streets in Philadelphia.

Friends Center is a collaborative venture of the American Friends Service Committee, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting of Friends, and Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting of Friends. Each partner holds an equal equity share in the corporation.  The Friends Center Corporation Board of Directors is appointed by the three equity partners.

Vision
Friends Center seeks to be a place that nurtures awareness of the presence of God, enlivens work for peace and justice, and invites the highest aspirations of the human spirit.

Mission
As an expression of the beliefs and testimonies of the Religious Society of Friends, Friends Center promotes peace, social equality, and stewardship of the earth, and works to transform the institutions of society to promote equality and justice in Philadelphia and throughout the world through its stewardship of and outreach from the Friends Center campus.

Friends Center supports and promotes the missions of the equity partners of Friends Center:  the American Friends Service Committee, Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends, and Philadelphia Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends, and welcomes additional organizations whose missions complement or advance the missions of the partners.  At Friends Center the work of each organization is enhanced by working together in a place of communal support.

In fulfilling this responsibility, the Board of Directors and the staff, consistent with good stewardship, commit to:

  • Create practical opportunities to serve as a witness for peace, equality, and stewardship of the earth;
  • Maintain a strong Quaker presence in the heart of Philadelphia and support the Religious Society of Friends;
  • Create opportunities for the public to learn of the testimonies and beliefs of the Religious Society of Friends;
  • Provide facilities for work that advances common Quaker purposes;
  • Preserve the Friends Center campus in keeping with the historic and Quaker characteristics of the campus and the city of Philadelphia;
  • Use sound environmental principles and act as a demonstration site for sustainable practices;
  • Provide a collaborative and efficient environment for those who work, worship, and witness at Friends Center.

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Board of Directors –  2017-2018

Shan Cretin*
General Secretary, American Friends Service Committee
Representing American Friends Service Committee
* After September 1, 2017, Shan Cretin will be replaced by her successor at AFSC, Joyce Ajlouny.

Christie Duncan-Tessmer,  Secretary
General Secretary, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting
Representing Philadelphia Yearly Meeting

Grant Johnson
Representing Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting

David LaFontaine, Executive Director, Community Ventures; Treasurer, Green Street Friends Meeting
Representing Philadelphia Yearly Meeting

Linell McCurry, Clerk
Associate Secretary Business and Finance, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting
Representing Philadelphia Yearly Meeting

Lisa Oliveri
Security Manager, American Friends Service Committee
Representing American Friends Service Committee

Dana Reinhold
Clerk, Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting
Representing Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting

Stephen Rockwell, Treasurer
Director of Information and Technology, American Friends Service Committee 
Representing American Friends Service Committee

William Schmidt
RBC Bank
Representing Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting