Steering Committee

Steering Committee

Wiley Cooper is retired from 21 years in pastoral ministry and 21 years with United Way of America and affiliated agencies.  He was a Vice President of United Way of America in the Field Services Division before serving as Secretariat of the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program. His present volunteer involvement includes the Boards of Directors of the S.C. Christian Action Council, Eau Claire Shalom Ministries, Eau Claire Promise Zone, and S.C. Communities of Shalom.  He is a member of the Eau Claire/North Columbia Rotary Club, the College Place Community Council, the Green Team, Choir, and Committee on Evangelism of Washington Street United Methodist Church.  Wiley is a graduate of Wofford College (AB), and Candler School of Theology at Emory University (M. Div.)

Bruce Coull is Professor & Dean Emeritus of University of South Carolina and a member of Shandon United Methodist Church in Columbia. Coull is a graduate of Moravian College (BS) and Lehigh University (MS, PhD). He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Duke University Marine Laboratory (Beaufort, NC) and an Assistant Professor of Biology at Clark University, MA before he joined the University of South Carolina (USC) faculty in 1973. At USC he was Director of Marine Sciences (1982-1994) and Dean of the USC School of the Environment (1996-2006). He is the Past-President (2006-2007) of the U.S. Council of Environmental Deans and Directors.  Currently he leads a USC School of the Environment partnership with the Midlands (SC) Green Congregation Initiative, whose objective is to promote faith based ethics and practice in local congregations. For 9 consecutive years he directed building a Habitat for Humanity house for the Columbia district of the United Methodist church

Tanya DeOliveira is a planner at Clemson University and a member of Saints Andrew, Paul and Francis Catholic Churches in Seneca. Whether it’s going for a hike in the foothills of South Carolina, biking to work or watching the sunset over Lake Michigan, Tanya sees God’s hand in the places we live, work and play. As a young child, her parents introduced her to the great outdoors with week-long vacations at local campgrounds and cross-country adventures to National Parks. As she grew older, her love for the environment grew into a desire to understand the complex relationship between the urban city and the natural environment. Tanya thinks everyone should have the access and the right to experience a clean, safe, healthy, fun community. Working with her local parish community and SCIPL, she looks forward to great things!

Ellen Francis is a religious sister of the Order of Saint Helena and an Episcopal priest canonically resident in the Diocese of Upper South Carolina.  She is the Treasurer and a member of the Leadership Council of OSH, and a very part-time Priest-in-Charge of All Saints Episcopal Church in Beech Island SC.  The Order of Saint Helena has purchased land in North Augusta, SC and their plan is to build a “green” convent and move there from GA. She is also a painter and iconographer, and a peace activist.

Grace Gifford is a member of Five Rivers Friends Quakers, Palmetto Friends Gathering/Friends General Conference.

Yossi Liebowitz is Rabbi Instructor at B’nai Israel in Spartanburg.

Lee Pippen, a retired school teacher, grandmother, and Winthrop College graduate, enjoys helping congregations form Environmental Stewardship  green teams and awareness. She is an ordained Elder and Deacon  and active member at Forest Lake Presbyterian Church, Columbia, SC, serving as Chair of their Environmental Stewardship Committee and President/Moderator of their Women of the Church. Lee is a member of several service and environmental organizations, is involved in local environmental groups including Sustainable Midlands Green Congregation Initiative and the Gills Creek Watershed Association Education Committee, and is on the Richland County Council Appearance Commission.

Richard Stuhr is a fishing guide and a member at Circular Congregational Church of Charleston.

Ellie Taylor MS, RN is an author, wellness consultant, volunteer food activist and member of Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Clemson. With a background in public health nursing and in building community coalitions for breastfeeding, childbirth, & nutrition, Ellie completed her Master’s in Family Health Nursing. She then served as Wellness Director for Oconee Medical Center managing programs for obesity treatment, cardiac rehab, occupational health, diabetes self-management and more.  Her interest in nutrition and food as essential for positive health culminated with publishing a book and curriculum for parent nutrition education that is available internationally at Her current volunteer work centers on assisting children/parents to improve their nutritional security, helping our state to develop a sustainable food system and working toward local resilience in response to climate change and peak oil. Ellie serves on the  UU Green Sanctuary environmental action committee and the City of Clemson Green Ribbon Advisory Committee, and supports numerous environmental efforts.

Tameria Warren is an Environmental Specialist and member of Bible Way Church of Atlas Road in Columbia.  She is a native of Detroit, Michigan and has worked in the environmental field since 2002. Her education includes Environmental Studies/Applications and Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) Management. She has previously worked as an environmental engineer with General Motors and is currently the Sustainability Management System (SMS) and Pollution Prevention (P2) coordinator at U.S. Army Fort Jackson. Tameria is a member of Bible Way’s Genesis Project as well as Sustainable Midlands and Gills Creek Watershed Association.

Ron Robinson, SCIPL Founder, is the Perkins-Prothro Chaplain & Professor of Religion at Wofford College, and is the director of the Center for Global & Community Engagement.  He teaches Religion, Literature & the Environment and co-teaches the senior seminar for environmental studies majors at Wofford.  He holds degrees from Wofford College, Duke University, and Southern Methodist University (SMU).

Becky Pittman, SCIPL Media Coordinator, is a social media coach and business services consultant with more than 15 years experience in management consulting and social media platform usage. She also has a broad-based interest in green/environmental practices. Her interest in community recycling began in the 70s when Boy Scouts used to bundle newspapers. Her father, a Baptist minister and the son of a North Carolina farmer, had implemented composting practices in their family garden. Becky had served as a grassroots energy management and recycling coordinator while employed by the U.S. Army and the South Carolina Department of Revenue.







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