Meet The Staff - Michigan Interfaith Power & Light
Kat Bio

KaTania "Kat" Brown - Operations and Communications Manager

Kat is a freelance virtual assistant and owner of Virtually Possible 365. She left the corporate environment in 2019 to launch her own business venture, which would allow her to use the skills and talents she has acquired over the past 28 years to help other women in business. She believes the best thing about launching her business is the freedom to pick and choose her clients, which is why she was eager to join the team.



Deirdre Morrison - Partnerships and Development Coordinator

Deirdre joined Michigan IPL’s Light the Way outreach team in 2021, and now assists the organization to engage collaborators and funding partners to help grow our impacts across Michigan communities. She studied ecology and sustainable agriculture at the Evergreen State College in WA, completed two terms of volunteer service with AmeriCorps, and has worn many hats in her years working with non-profits. Deirdre loves being resourceful, finding useful ways to reclaim, repair, and repurpose– from freshwater and soils to building materials, and is especially interested in cross-cultural learning in this regard. She divides her time between greenthumbing, building projects, research, and writing. When she’s not dreaming of hot springs and trail-life, she’s often making art or volunteering with projects that address homelessness and conservation.


Kate Poirier - Energy Efficiency Outreach Specialist

Kate is very happy to be sharing the importance of energy efficiency and creation care with congregations throughout the state of MI. With a background in grassroots sustainable agriculture and organic family farming, and strong ties to churches and ministries in the state, working in the capacity of outreach is a wonderful blend of interests and passion for both the churches who desire to share God's love, and the earth that helps make church ministries possible. Kate currently works out of Arenac County where she is able to participate in food pantries, ministerial support projects and enjoys time spent with family, in particular her husband, Russ. 


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. 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 a BA in Women’s Studies from Carleton College and is a PhD Candidate in Cultural Anthropology at the University of California - Davis. 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 Detroit's North End. 


Jennifer Young - Energy Programs 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.

Contact Jennifer

Contact Us