Leader Spotlight: Denis Detzel

Denis Detzel is a member of the Gamaliel Board of Directors.   works in an organization consulting firm that he founded called Eastlake.  He also teaches in universities, usually regarding organization behavior and human resources.  Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio Denis attended St. Xavier High School.  He has been with Gamaliel since its beginning, as one of its first board members.  Denis attends Sheil Catholic Center at Northwestern University.

How did your work with Gamaliel begin?

I was first introduced to Gamaliel through my friend of thirty years, John McKnight.  John was on the board of the APC Foundation and he invited me to join him in Gamaliel.  I was elected to the board within the first year of Gamaliel’s beginning.  At the time we all had special roles.   I think Greg Galluzzo did a great job of identifying multi-faceted people who added lots of interesting experience in community organizing and community work.

What appealed to you about the Fire of Faith Campaign?
I like to see a diversity of religious people, people who are committed to moral principles getting involved in community initiatives. This provides for the ethical and moral base to come up with programs. 

What are the advantages that come from working in an interfaith network?
The advantage lies in that you’re surrounded by people who have different perceptions of what is appropriate and what pleases God-this is more diverse than a single religion organization.  An interfaith network allows you to think through things better because you have more options and ideas as opposed to being with people who all think alike.  Many people in Gamaliel are religious, so they approach issues in different ways and bring different strengths to the table.

How is Gamaliel’s Fire of Faith Campaign aligned with Catholic Social Teaching?
I think they are very closely aligned, and I think the Fire of Faith campaign is a good example of people, especially Catholics, practicing their religion.  I don’t mean this in a sense of going to mass, but by going out in the world and doing good for people.  I think the concept of getting people active and organized, and getting them to pursue their initiatives is a wonderful thing.  The Fire of Faith campaign works to get people active and mobilized, while still making sure people are staying true to their own agenda.

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