The Rev. M. Jamil Scott serves as the Director of Lifespan Religious Education at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Fresno where he develops faith-based programs for 400+ youth and adults. He regularly teaches courses on Engaged Buddhism and Unitarian Universalism at the UU Church of Fresno, as well as conducting worship services and preaching.
Jamil is the 2014 Fahs Collaborative contemplative education research fellow with the Unitarian Universalist Seminary, Meadville Lombard Theological School. In his research he is developing a youth-led action-based contemplative practice community within the Unitarian Universalist faith.
In response to the attention given to police violence against Black men in America, Rev. Jamil has been working with Lama Tsultrim Allione and Chandra Easton in the creation and facilitation of a program to bring the teachings of Machig Labdron to the problem of American racism. The program is called Compassionately Awake to Privilege and Oppression, and is currently being hosted by the Tara Mandala Bay Area Sangha in Berkeley, CA. Jamil has started training with Lama Tsultrim Allione to teach the Feeding Your Demons practice to communities in crisis and persons of color.
Jamil is active in faith-based social justice work with the organizing group Faith in Community of Fresno and very recently the Buddhist Peace Fellowship of Oakland, CA. He was ordained as a Buddhist minister by the International Order of Buddhist Ministers in 2014.
Gregory Rouillard is a Naropa Master of Divinity graduate who since 2008 has followed a transformative path from a twenty-year career as a U.S. Marine officer to embracing a new life of service as a community impresario and spiritual entrepreneur. His three years at Naropa formed an intense and thorough crucible for this transformation, infusing him with the confidence to wholeheartedly take his seat as an embodied leader, mentor, and companion of those who long for the experience of authentic community.
When searching for a descriptive title for his work, Gregory discovered the term impresario, from the 18th century Italian impresa, “to undertake.” He considers himself a community impresario, “one who undertakes community.” One vehicle for this undertaking is the Circle Sigma System, an integrated organizational model of Gregory’s design that provides businesses, nonprofits and communities with workable systems for effective aim realization through collaboration, shared power, and meaningful relationships. The component models of Sociocracy, Nonviolent Communication (NVC), and Restorative Circles provide dependable tools to transform organizational structure, decision making, communication and conflict engagement while maintaining or improving organizational effectiveness.
Gregory is also the co-founder, president, and director of Family HEART Camp, a nonprofit national network of summer camps for families and individuals. These camps provide a week-long immersion in compassionate community based in the principles and practices of NVC. He is also co-founder and partner in the Seven Principles Project, an entrepreneurial ministry aimed at offering NVC to Unitarian Universalist (UU) congregations as a spiritual practice for living the seven UU principles every day and cultivating the ideals of Beloved Community.
While Gregory lives with his family in a cohousing community near Boulder, he also travels extensively to offer his work to the world. His dearest dream is to own and operate a rural retreat center where people can come together for extended periods of time to experience meaningful community and explore the question, “how do we live together?”