As an eight year old, Curtis remembers grilling his parents endlessly about the meaning of life, including the burning question, “What planet does God live on?” His early philosophical pursuits while growing up in Flint, MI, led him into deep and ongoing working with diverse groups to realize personal and social change. A leading and seemingly endless line of inquiry for him is how we can create organizations, communities and societies that support ecological sustainability and justice for all.
For the past several years, Curtis has worked with several innovative social change networks focused on the food system, public health, climate change resiliency and economic development, all with a central focus on addressing social inequities. While much of his work as a facilitator, trainer and coach is about helping groups focus on what matters most, he admits that this can be a challenge, citing the words attributed to John Muir – “When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.”
Curtis proudly considers himself a “network geek,” fascinated by what science is discovering about the interconnected reality of life and always interested to explore, develop and play with new “tools” and approaches that allow people to collaborate, learn, innovate and create meaningful impacts in the world across lines of distance and difference. He is also a proud member of the Research Alliance for Regenerative Economics (or RARE), a group of network geeks from the fields of ecology, economics and development, looking at how people can better align with living systems. He is also on the Advisory Board of EmbraceRace, which is building an online community to discuss and share best practices for raising and caring for kids, all kids, in the context of race (check it out!).
Curtis holds a B.A. from the University of Michigan and a Master’s degree from Harvard Divinity School (big surprise, right?). He lives in western Massachusetts with his wife, three daughters, and six laying hens.