Our Board members aid in our mission by providing strategic guidance, ensuring proper governance, helping with outreach, and participating in and contributing to our fundraising efforts. If you or someone you know may be interested in participating on the Michigan IPL board, please contact our office.
Rev. John Schleicher
Retired ELCA Bishop, Grand Ledge
Edgewood United Church, E. Lansing
Fr. Jim McDougall
St. Andrew's Catholic, Saline
Islamic Organization of N. America, Warren
Dave Arnosti, PhD
Haslett Community Church
Michigan State University
Rabbi Moshe Givental
Rev. Deb Hansen
Interfaith Chaplain, Levering
Sonya Pouncy, CEM, CMVP, LEED-AP
Energy Sciences, Royal Oak
Suresh Rama, PhD
HCD Group and Valiant-TMS,
Cybelle Shattuck, PhD
People's Church, Kalamazoo
Western Michigan University
Spend less on energy, more on mission.
Since 2015, over 600 congregations have participated in Light the Way. On average, each house of worship received $1,300 in free energy upgrades and expects to save $650 on annual energy expenses.
That's $1,300 these congregations didn't have to spend on building maintenance, and $650 more each year that can go into programming for kids, supporting food pantries and other vital ministries.
Eligible congregations and religious schools:
- Have Consumers Energy electric or gas service
- Own their facility
Electric upgrades include:
Gas upgrades include:
- 11W Flood LEDs (replaces 65W incandescent floodlights)
- 9W LEDs (replaces 60W incandescents)
- 4-6W LEDs (replaces 25W-40W incandescent candelabras)
- LED bulbs for Exit Signs
- Vending Machine Misers (for compatible cold beverage machines)
- Smart, programmable thermostats
- Pre-Rinse Spray Valves
- Bathroom Faucet Aerators
- Kitchen Faucet Aerators
- Hot Water Pipe Wrap
Why is Consumers Energy giving away free stuff? Why would they want to sell us less energy?
Since the enactment of the Clean, Renewable, and Efficient Energy Act of 2008, and the extension of the Energy Efficiency Standard in 2016, Michigan utilities are required to spend a percentage of their profits on energy efficiency products and services for their customers. Programs like this help utilities fulfill this obligation and move Michigan toward a cleaner, more efficient energy future.
Why is Michigan IPL working with a utility?
Michigan IPL has worked with Consumers to develop this program because it helps us to fulfill our mission to inspire and equip faith communities to be better stewards of God’s creation-- and we know it helps congregations spend less on bills and more on the things that matter.
I still have questions! Who can I talk to?
Please contact our Project Manager, Jennifer Young. She can be reached via email or at 248-463-8811.
The Carbon Fund was created-- thanks to a generous gift from the Ann Arbor Friends Meeting-- to provide mini-grants of $2,000 - $5,000 to congregations with financial need to reduce their carbon footprints.
By enabling emissions-reducing projects in economically disadvantaged communities, the Carbon Fund addresses inequity as well as climate change.
- Own the building or site in which the project is being proposed
- Are in financial need
How to apply
1. In about 1 page, describe the following:
- Your organization and its mission
- Your financial need
- Your project, its goals, and how it will reduce CO2 emissions
- Estimated project cost and amount requested
- How this project is a part of your larger vision of sustainability (how your commitment to sustainability extends beyond this project)
2. Include your name and contact information as well as the congregation's name and address.
3. Email your application to Leah Wiste at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Previous Carbon Fund projects have funded the installation of solar powered exterior lights at St. Peter's Episcopal Church and Pilgrim Baptist Church (pictured), both in Detroit.
Projects that are high-visibility or that are integrated into programming or communications—in other words, projects that also inspire and grow awareness beyond your congregation—are especially encouraged.
How to contribute to the Carbon Fund
You can make a gift to the Carbon Fund online OR just write "Carbon Fund" in the memo line on your check and mail it to us at: 1950 Trumbull St, Detroit MI 48216. Thank you!
Cathy Marshall - Bookkeeper
Cathy has worked with non-profit organizations for over 30 years, first as an organizational manager and most recently as a bookkeeper. Long-term stints have included 4 years as the Executive Director of the WARM Training Center (now EcoWorks) and almost 20 years as the Deputy Director of the Grandmont Rosedale Development Corporation. Cathy's passion for protecting the environment and all of its amazing beauty is what draws her to Michigan IPL. Cathy is a member of Temple Beth Emeth in Ann Arbor, where she is part of the Social Justice committee. Her husband Jack is a founding member of the group that is leading the effort to install solar panels on the Temple.
Leah Wiste - Executive Director
Leah has been on staff at Michigan IPL since 2013 and has been the Executive Director since December 2018. She is deeply invested in advocating on behalf of our sacred, living Earth and all of its creatures, especially animals. She believes that the climate crisis is at its root a moral and a spiritual one, and that people of faith and conscience have a critical role to play in bringing us into right relation with the Earth and with each other. Leah has degrees in Women’s Studies and Cultural Anthropology. When she’s not fighting climate change, she’s weeding the garden, buying more books than she will ever read, and trying not to get electrocuted while renovating her house in Northwest Detroit.
Jennifer Young - Project Manager
Jennifer holds an MS in Resource Policy & Behavior from the School of Natural Resources & Environment at the University of Michigan and a BS in Biology from Eastern Michigan University. Prior to working with Michigan IPL, Jennifer worked as a Program Manager for the Southeast Michigan Regional Energy Office where she convened government leaders in southeast Michigan communities in collaborative renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives. Jennifer is actively involved in the Interfaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit and the Detroit Interfaith Outreach Network, the Ferndale Environmental Sustainability Commission, and the U.S. Green Building Council's Detroit Chapter. Jennifer’s love of, and reverence for, nature stems from camping trips in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, where her Dad took her and her sister during many beloved summers in her childhood.