Reverend Charles Morris
Reverend Charles Morris is the founder of Michigan Interfaith Power and Light. The mission of this coalition, which now includes over 200 congregations across the state, is to involve communities of faith as stewards of God’s creation by promoting and implementing energy conservation, energy efficiency, renewable energy and related sustainable practices. Since 1998, Reverend Morris has also been on a mission to make his church, St. Elizabeth’s of Wyandotte, Michigan, a sustainable place to worship. On the roof of the building are solar panels and a wind turbine that provide electricity; other features include a solar collector that provides the building with hot water, a solar roof fan which removes hot air from the attic of the church, and solar netting for the stained glass windows that retains heat in the winter and lowers cooling costs in the summer. Reverend Morris holds graduate degrees in sociology, divinity studies, and urban planning.
Danielle Conroyd has been the project director for the Immaculate Heart of Mary (IHM) Sisters’ Monroe Campus Long Range Master Plan since 1998. The purpose of the Master Plan is to ensure that the entire campus will express the mission of the congregation. The IHMcommunity considers sustainability a moral mandate for the 21st century, and the first segment of the Plan’s implementation was the total renovation of the Motherhouse based on sustainable design principles. Convinced that the plight of the Earth is intimately connected to global poverty, violence and oppression, the Sisters committed to making their home a “living laboratory” to develop, refine and demonstrate Earth-restoring practices and systems. Faced with the choice of either rebuilding or renovating their antiquated home, the Sisters chose to reuse as much of the building as possible, salvage the construction debris, and incorporate sustainable technologies including geothermal heating and graywater recycling. The U.S. Green Building Council awarded the Motherhouse LEED certification, calling it “a pioneering example of sustainable design” that had earned “a place among the finest measured green buildings.” Previous to her work with the IHM Sisters, Ms. Conroyd was the senior vice president of Human Resources for Mercy Hospitals and Health Services of Detroit. Ms. Conroyd holds a bachelor’s degree in English and theology from Marygrove College and a master’s in behavioral psychology from Wayne State University.