Meet the Team
The diverse team that supports Tell Me the Truth About Racism is notably led by two white people, Jen and Will, who have surrounded themselves with people of color. Hear from one of their consultants why dismantling racism is work that white people need to lead. The work they do, grounded in the good news of Jesus, has new life and learning to offer communities of any complexion.
Ms Jen (facilitator)
Jennifer Holt Enriquez (Jen, she/her/hers) is a Christian formation professional at St. Christopher’s in Oak Park in the Diocese of Chicago. She is a licensed attorney and has operated her own small business since 2003. Jen began working with kids in a professional capacity when her own kids were in preschool. She transitioned to ministry in 2015, and became active within Forma. Jen is an advocate for Christian formation and the importance of lay ministers within the church.
Jen’s path to antiracism work began when she created a Peace Camp for kids in 2017. At Peace Camp kids explore different world religions but no particular religion is promoted. It was successful at St. Christopher’s and gained the support of an ecumenical clergy group; it was due to expand to two other churches (a total of five) in 2020 with the theme of antiracism. When Jen connected with Will in a Zoom class in October 2020 she was inspired by how he articulated racism as a sin that separates us from God. The opportunity to bring our Christian faith to the real lives of families is infused with the Holy Spirit and the most meaningful work of her life.
Jen’s family includes husband Tony, two teenagers, and three dachshunds. She loves to get her hands dirty in the garden and recently began fostering monarch caterpillars. She has completed ten marathons. Jen grew up in North Dakota, spent 27 years in Virginia, and identifies as white.
Rev Will (facilitator)
William Bouvel (Will, he/him/his) was ordained in the diocese of Chicago in 2021 and was previously Director of Children’s Ministries for 5 years at St. Chrysostom’s Church Chicago. He completed his Masters of Divinity in 2020 at the University of Chicago and also holds a Masters in Music from the Royal Academy of Music London. He’s had several previous careers as a classical tenor soloist, computer programmer, and aspiring urban planner. Will identifies as White and is originally from the Philadelphia suburbs.
Will's graduate thesis "Recovering Scripture through the Sacred Imagination of Bibliodrama" explores how imagination is essential to scriptural interpretation. Bibliodrama (developed by Peter Pitzele) and other wondering-based approaches easily invite individuals and communities, especially children, into the ongoing work to make meaning from the holy texts that tell us who and whose we are.
In 2018 Will started exploring the idea of an “antiracist Sunday School” and has been working with Children’s Formation leaders for several years to grow that work. The 2020 pandemic and outcry over racial injustice catalyzed this work in October 2020 when the Holy Spirit connected him with Jen Enriquez over a zoom session. He now works with her in sharing the good news that comes from bringing children into the work of dismantling racism. Their work together has been a great joy.
Outside of ministry, Will and husband Fred are new dads to their newborn daughter. Will loves living in Chicago, cooking, biking, bird watching, Star Trek, and yoga.
Ms Miriam (advisor)
Miriam Willard McKenney (she/her/hers) and her husband, David, met at the Union of Black Episcopalians conference in 1981 and have three daughters. Miriam works as Forward Movement’s Director of Development and Mission Engagement and Youth Minister at Calvary Episcopal Church in Cincinnati.
In the Diocese of Southern Ohio, Miriam serves on the Becoming Beloved Community Leadership Team and got a Becoming Beloved Community grant from the diocese to enter into racial reconciliation using picture books and radical honesty. Before joining Forward Movement’s staff in 2010, Miriam was a children’s librarian for over 20 years. Miriam blogs at growchristians.org and 50favbags.com.
Rev Crystal (advisor)
Crystal Elliott-O’Connor, MA ECE, MDiv Congregational Care and Family Support (she/her/hers) has dedicated more than 30 years to education, care and support of children, teens, and families. Serving in diverse capacities that include college level teaching, leadership training and ministry, she has always carried a common and strong thread of race equity through all of her work. This has become Crystal’s priority body of teaching and training. During her tenure as a training and education coordinator for the City of Chicago, Crystal created a series designed to help early childhood teachers discover and explore gender and race biases in their work. This grew into a year-long community of practice during which she had the opportunity to share and present across the city and in other parts of the country. Crystal has created a unique bi-vocational body of work on race and race equity in which she uses knowledge and information of structural and implicit racism to inform and educate many people in multiple settings, in order to raise awareness and create momentum to dismantle racism in America. Crystal earned a Master of Arts in Teaching from National Louis University and a Master of Divinity with a focus on Congregational Care from Northern Theological Seminary. She works hard to earn day trips to weird places with her husband Thomas, and looks forward to spending any time she can exploring the shores of Lake Michigan, which she coins “better than any ocean anywhere!”