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Jeanné Lewis Joins Faith in Public Life as Interim CEO


Tuesday, April 26, 2022


Christy Setzer, christy@newheightscommunications.com

Kia Smith, ksmith@faithinpubliclife.org


Lewis has served on Faith in Public Life’s Board of Directors since 2016, leading racial equity work and building faith leader networks

Rev. Jennifer Butler will transition to Founder in Residence

Washington, D.C. – On June 1, 2022, Jeanné Lewis will become interim CEO of Faith in Public Life (FPL). Lewis serves as Vice Chair of FPL’s Board of Directors, which she joined in 2016. She currently works as Vice President and Chief Engagement Officer at the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP), where she connects social justice organizations to the funding networks they’ve traditionally lacked access to so that they can increase their impact and she persuades funders to improve their practice. She will resign her role on FPL’s Board on May 31, before officially beginning as interim CEO. 

As interim CEO, Lewis will work with FPL’s coalition of faith leaders, board, staff, organizational allies, donors and other supporters to promote religious values and voices in support of justice, equity and the common good. She will take over for founding CEO, Rev. Jennifer Butler. 

“I’ve had the pleasure of working with Jeanné over the past six years that she’s served on Faith in Public Life’s Board of Directors,” said Rev. Butler. “During this time, we worked together to deepen our racial equity work, build powerful networks of faith leaders across the country and re-imagine what Faith in Public Life can be. I’m so excited to see her step in to lead Faith in Public Life, and I look forward to continuing to work with her and Faith in Public Life as we reclaim our faith for justice, equity and the common good.”

Rev. Butler will transition into the position of Founder in Residence. In this new position, she will continue to advise the Board and Faith in Public Life’s leadership team while increasing her focus on building partnerships and amplifying progressive faith values through writing, teaching and speaking about faith, culture and politics. 

Lewis started her career as a faith-based community organizer in Florida and Ohio. She has founded and led two young-adult ministries, most recently in her current parish of St. Augustine Roman Catholic Parish in Washington, DC, the mother church of Black Catholics in the United States. Lewis has served in a number of leadership roles there over the last 12 years, including vice chair of the Parish Pastoral Council and spokesperson to the press when Pope Francis came to visit Washington, DC, in 2015.

Said Lewis, “I couldn’t be more proud to take on this role at Faith in Public Life. Since our founding in 2005, Faith in Public Life and our dynamic coalition of faith leaders have been unyielding in our pursuit of justice, equity and the common good. From landing key votes to ensure the Affordable Care Act passed to demanding every vote be counted in the 2020 election, our bold moral actions have affirmed our values and the human dignity of all.” 

Faith in Public Life was founded in 2005, shortly after the re-election of President George W. Bush. Bush’s win was in part credited to ‘faith voters’ who had turned out to ban same-sex marriage and support other divisive policies. FPL was established to empower faith voters whose religion taught them something different: to love, respect and protect one another. Since then, FPL has worked to advance just policies at the local, state and federal levels, mobilizing faith leaders, faith organizations and allies to act in the prophetic pursuit of justice, equity and the common good. At a moment when we are witnessing a rise in incidents of political violence like the January 6th insurrection, threats to our ability to ensure free and fair elections, and discriminatory statehouse legislation, FPL is countering Christian nationalism in faith and politics. 

“As we witness faith being co-opted to harm our loved ones, faith leaders will continue to be prophetic voices for justice and equity and the key to addressing the challenges ahead of us. I’m looking forward to working with Faith in Public Life’s coalition of faith leaders, board, staff, organizational allies, donors and supporters to continue building, expanding and protecting this nation’s multi-faith and multiracial democracy,” said Lewis.


Faith in Public Life is a national movement of clergy and faith leaders united in the prophetic pursuit of justice, equity and the common good. Together, with a network of over 50,000 leaders, they are leading the fight to advance just policies at the state and federal level that affirm our values and the human dignity of all.

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