Aaron Stauffer, M.Div. ’14

Aaron Stauffer, M.Div. ’14
Executive Director, Religions for Peace USA
Nashville TN and New York NY
What do you do?
I’m the Executive Director of Religions for Peace USA, a national interfaith nonprofit organization that works to inspire and advance multi-religious actions for peace and justice. Religions for Peace USA, the most broad-based interfaith organization in the US, works in three primary areas: Islamophobia, climate change, and immigration reform. I’m currently running an anti-Islamophobiacampaign in Nashville and examining how Islamophobia intersects with other forms of racism as well ashow it is impacted by issues such as immigration and economic justice. Much of this work is similar to community organizing, but I also run a non-profit and oversee a staff. Our main office is at the United Nations Church Center, so I return to New York every five weeks, all of which keeps me busy.
What’s the best thing about your job?
Being Executive Director of Religions for Peace USA allows me to engage the whole person in the fight for justice and human rights. This means touching the deep religious aspects of people’s lives, their moral and ethical touchstone. I’m convinced that to make systemic change, you must also make conceptual change and affect a person’s philosophy of life. The sort of exchanges that arise from this work involve deep learnings from the Dharmic and specifically theirteaching on non-violence and non-possessiveness, and that’s deepening my own Christian understanding. My work is both intellectually stimulating but also wonderfully practical and concrete – being on the ground


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