Staff and Directors

Meet the organizers, directors, and executive committee board members committed to bringing about justice in Pennsylvania.

Dedicated to bringing about justice to Pennsylvania

Reverend Greg Holston | Executive Director

Rev. Holston is a recognized community activist, pastor, and leader known for advocating for racial and economic justice.

Today, he is the Executive Director of POWER: Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower and Rebuild; 50 + congregations representing nearly 50,000 individuals dedicated to building a city of opportunity that works for all. POWER is currently working with a coalition of community groups, activists and houses of faith to promote fairer wage policies, fair funding at schools and justice for returning citizens. Rev Holston also served as the National President of OIC of America, helping the organization raise 4.5 million dollars in federal grants for workforce development.

In May 2014 as a leader of POWER’s Economic Justice Team, Reverend Holston helped to lead a coalition to raise the living wage to $12 per hour for all Philadelphia contracted and subcontractor workers – in particular, the nearly 4000 workers at the Philadelphia International Airport. As result, a city-wide referendum was passed making the living wage for all Philadelphia contracted and subcontracted workers, $12 per hour.  

Reverend Holston is an Elder in the United Methodist Church. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Indiana University of Pa., a Juris Doctorate from Georgetown University, a Masters of Education degree from Cheyney University and a Masters of Divinity degree from Lutheran Theological Seminary of Philadelphia.

Reverend Holston is experienced as a pastor, businessman, entrepreneur, college professor, speaker and community activist.  However, his most important role is serving as a devoted and loving husband to Deborah, his beautiful wife, and father to the four children they share, Taheerah, Jamila, Nia, and Nasser.  

David Koppisch (Co-Founder)| Deputy Director

David has nearly 25 years experience working with community organizations as an organizer, fundraiser and social worker.  Before helping launch POWER, David worked with several organizing groups in Philadelphia including the Women’s Community Revitalization Project, the Eastern Philadelphia Organizing Project, and the Philadelphia Affordable Housing Coalition.  David is also an instructor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy & Practice.

Reverend Yvette Davis | Deputy Director

Pastor Yvette Davis is Associate Pastor of Urban Engagement with Cookman Beloved Communities Baptist Church in Philadelphia, PA, The Rev. Dr. Donna Jones, Senior Pastor.  

Prior to that, Pastor Davis served in the United Methodist Church in pastoral and extension ministry roles.  Among these roles, she was the first African-American woman pastor of Grace United Methodist Church in Harrisburg, PA and Asbury United Methodist Church in York, PA, and Bridesburg United Methodist Church in Philadelphia, PA.

She served as the Director of The Office of Urban and Global Ministries, Strengthening the Black Church for the 21st Century Coordinator, and Shalom Coordinator for The Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of The United Methodist Church.  Pastor Davis resourced more than 120 urban local United Methodist churches in the areas of ministering with ethnically and socioeconomically diverse populations in an urban context.

Pastor Davis serves on several Boards and Committees including The Christian Churches United Healing Communities Organizing Committee; The WITF Community Advisory Board; the Strategic Planning Committee for Jewish Family Services; and The Emerging Ministries Consulting.  

Pastor Davis earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature from New York University; a Master of Science in Library and Information Science from Drexel University; attended Drew Theological Seminary; and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Business Administration at Capella University.  She is a Lilly Foundation Clergy Leadership Fellow and a JP Morgan Chase Foundation Fellow for Nonprofit Management for Faith-Based Leaders.   

Pastor Davis currently lives in Harrisburg with her cat, Buster.  When she has spare time, she enjoys spending time with friends, reading, crocheting, and practicing for her motorcycle license test.

Yvette Gimenez  | Director of Operations

Yvette has a graduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania. She comes to POWER from the world of Motherhood and the profession of Early Childhood Education.  She has spent the last 20 years of her life working in her calling as a mom, doula, writer, grief counselor and an advocate for young children and families.
Emilie Haertsch | Digital Communications Specialist

Emilie Haertsch brings ten years of nonprofit communications and editorial experience to POWER. She grew up in Bucks County and graduated from Temple University, where she studied English, political science, and German. A member of St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church in Germantown, she also served in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps and completed the Contemplative Leaders in Action program at St. Joseph’s University. Emilie received her MFA in creative nonfiction from Goucher College, and she writes essay and memoir. She is passionate about using storytelling to support justice work.
Jordan Ford | POWER Philadelphia Community Organizer/Economic Dignity Organizer

Jordan Ford grew up in the Poconos and attended Howard University, where he studied political science. Jordan has five years of organizing experience, having begun his community organizing career at ACTION United. Most recently, Jordan worked on the Krasner for District Attorney campaign as the finance director. He is a member of Church of the Redeemer Baptist in South Philadelphia. His passions are racial and economic justice, missions, and evangelism.
Mary Laver  | POWER Philadelphia Catholic Community Outreach Organizer

Mary Laver, a long-time co-leader of POWER at St Vincent de Paul parish/ Germantown, is now POWER’s Catholic Community Organizer.   Buoyed by the bold words and example of Pope Francis re/ seeing and empowering people on the margins, she helped the PICO Network create the “Year of Encounter with Pope Francis” program involving 150 Catholic parishes nationally and 12 in the Philadelphia area.  The 3 other areas of Catholic outreach POWER is undertaking now are with Catholic universities seeking a partnership with POWER, “Millennial” Catholics eager to work together to combat racism in the criminal justice system, and African immigrant Catholics through the Office of Cultural Ministries of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
Professionally, Mary’s background is in academia  (teaching/ administration at Cabrini University and other local higher ed institutions) but she now eagerly embraces the role of “pracademic,” putting the theology of God’s inclusive love and justice into practice through interfaith systemic change work with POWER. Mary welcomes your ideas and feedback.
Lena Glickman | POWER Metro Community Organizer

Lena Glickman grew up in a small town in Southern Vermont. She attended Oberlin College, where she majored in history, focusing on race and class in America. As an organizer for Pennsylvania Working Families, she built power around economic and racial justice in Bucks and Montgomery Counties. Buddhist Vipassana meditation and Quaker faith and practice serve as guiding forces in her life and organizing–pushing her toward greater presence, connection and action for justice.

Will Fuller | POWER Metro Community Organizer

A son of western Kentucky, Will originally joined POWER in the fall of 2016 to complete a Community Organizing Fellowship through Leadership for Educational Equity (LEE). He currently organizes full-time for POWER’s suburban counties. A 2010 Teach for America alumnus, he is dedicated to the causes of educational equity, faith-based social justice, theological education reform, and racial reconciliation. He holds a Masters of Education from Lipscomb University and an M.A. in Theological Studies from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School.
Lilah Saber | POWER Philadelphia Community Organizer

A native of the Jersy Shore, Lilah is the daughter of Egyptian immigrants and grew up in an interfaith household with Muslim and Christian influences. She attended West Chester University where she completed a Bachelor’s of Social Work with a concentration in youth empowerment and urban community change. Since joining POWER, Lilah’s work has centered around organizing and training congregations in Northwest Philadelphia and developing youth leadership. She is passionate about combating adultism and promoting equity for young people.
Jaisy Omollo | POWER Lehigh Valley Community Organizer

Jaisy B. Omollo is from the Pennsylvania area, born in New Jersey. Jaisy was raised her two parents who migrated from Kenya, East Africa in search for better opportunities for themselves and their children. As she watched her parents struggle in this country she believed that it was her duty to take advantage of the opportunities that the country had to offer in honor of her parents.

In 2014 Jaisy attended La Salle University where she received her Bacelor’s in Political During her time at La Salle University, she was recognized as a student leader in many organizations at the University and even the Surrounding community. She served as the Vice President of the African American Student League, Senator of Student Government, and even student member of the Board of Trustees. In her third year in college, she was offered an opportunity to work for the campaign of Pennsylvania’s current Attorney General Josh Shapiro. Immediately after that, she was offered to serve as a legislative intern in the office of Councilwoman Cindy Bass.

After earning her degree she continued her efforts as an organizer and Minority advocate and was recruited by the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation to serve as on Capitol Hill in the office of Congressman John Lewis, legendary Civil Rights leader. Through this experience she has built relations with the grandson of Nelson Mandela as well as the staff for Impact Strategies by Angela Rye of whom she volunteered for after her time on the hill.

Now that Jaisy is an organizer with power, she hopes to continue making an impact for others throughout Pennsylvania and even in the country.

Nathan Sooy | POWER Central Community Organizer

Nathan Richard Sooy has nearly 30 years experience working with social justice organizations in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Ohio. Before coming to work for POWER, Sooy was Central Pennsylvania Campaign Coordinator for Clean Water Action for nearly 8 years organizing against the effects of fracking on water and air. Nathan was Executive Director of community organizing projects in Baltimore, Maryland and Muskegon, Michigan. Nathan built a successful Labor/Community Coalition in Wisconsin that developed increased progressive voting power in state elections. Sooy also the Associate Director of the Cleveland office of Ohio Citizen Action and got his first significant training in community organizing in Detroit during the 80’s.

Sooy has been trained as a leader and organizer in the traditions of the Gamaliel Foundation, PICO Network, and DART Network and is an alumnus of the Midwest Academy and National Peoples Action.

Anthony Giancatarino | Senior Policy Fellow

Anthony Giancatarino is a dad of two girls and current resident of Mount Airy and member of St. Vincent dePaul Parish in Germantown.  Anthony‘s work with POWER will support the policy research and strategy of POWER’s Climate Justice and Jobs team.  His work is part of a fellowship housed at the Movement Strategy Innovation Center.  Anthony‘s work is designed to identify and support the strategy and alignment of organizations and networks working at the intersection of the renewable energy transition, community ownership, and racial and economic justice. Prior to this work, Anthony spent seven years at the Center for Social Inclusion, working with community organizations to support policy strategies to achieve racial equity in energy democracy, food equity, and transparency, participation, and accountability in governance.  Anthony holds a Masters of Public Administration from NYU and a degree in Theology and Political Science from the University of Scranton.
Rabbi Julie Greenberg | Climate Justice Coordinator

Julie grew up in the civil rights movement of the 1960s in Wash. D.C. and in Mississippi where she formed a lifelong commitment to building a world free of racism, sexism and economic oppression.  She was trained in organizing in the feminist movement of the 1970’s and in Movement for a New Society from 1977 into the 80’s. Since then she has lived in Philadelphia for 35 years where she raised 5 children.  Julie is in her 18th year as Rabbi of a center city congregation and also teaches classes on Systems Thinking, Diversity and Equity and Organizational Development at the Council for Relationships. Since POWER’s founding, Julie has worked in a variety of roles. She currently coordinates POWER’s Climate Justice and Jobs work and organizes money to sustain POWER’s mission.
Terri Burgin | Climate Justice Fellow

At POWER, Terri Burgin, a native of Philadelphia, wears several hats: At the congregation level, she is the long time co-chair of the St Vincent’s POWER Local Organizing Committee—training and mobilizing parishioners to bring their faith into the public arena in support of POWER’s social justice campaigns. Serving first as a member and then as Co-Chair of POWER’s Economic Dignity Team since its inception, Terri helped achieve a living wage victory for the City of Philadelphia. During Terri’s tenure on Economic Dignity she nurtured POWER’s emerging Climate Justice work and now is a Climate Justice Fellow organizing on staff to connect racial, economic and climate justice. She works with community members and allies to press PECO to reduce the use of fossil fuels that cause health problems in neighborhoods targeted by poverty and overburdened by environmental toxins, to expand the use of local solar power, and to generate jobs for affected communities in newer, cleaner technology fields. Terri is a deeply Catholic organizer, with her eye always on the PEOPLE who deserve to be treated with the dignity God gave them and is proud to be leading in a faith-based people’s organization.
Kendra Cochran | Voter Engagement Coordinator

Kendra Cochran is a West Philadelphia native. Her activism began at age of 17, when she organized against the School District of Philadelphia. Kendra attended Bennett College, where she fed her organizing passion as a lyricist, using art to develop her activist voice. She has worked as the Data and Training Director for Enroll America, Regional Organizing Director for the PA Democrats, and also served in various leadership roles on political campaigns. Kendra’s goal in her current work is to AWAKEN the PEOPLE and empower them to become leaders through education and development of their individual gifts.
Nicolas O’Rourke | POWER Philadelphia Community Organizer

A native son of Indianapolis, Rev. Nicolas O’Rourke is the Assistant Pastor of Worship & Liturgical Arts at the Living Water United Church of Christ in Oxford Circle and Community Organizer for POWER. A strong proponent of social justice & spiritual awareness, he works across wide ranging lines of thinking to highlight common spiritual ground for all people. Since joining POWER his focus has been towards dismantling the crippling effects of Mass Incarceration and Police Brutality on people of color and combating Islamophobia within the city of Philadelphia. Nicolas is completing his education at the Lancaster Bible College: Center for Urban Theological Studies. He considers himself a “sacred activist” and contends for the rights of people with the guidance of God

Executive Committee for the Board of Directors

Wiley Redding | Chairperson
Frances Upshaw | Secretary
Erica Owens| Board Member
Hildegard Kent| Board Member
Lori Hershey | Board Member