The Rev. Alvin Herring is executive director of Faith in Action, formerly PICO National Network, an international network of more than 40 federations and local groups in 21 states and three countries. Prior to assuming this leadership role, Rev. Herring worked as the director for racial equity and community engagement for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the fifth largest foundation in the world. While serving in this role, he advanced racial justice by ensuring groups leading racial justice work they had resources to propel their campaigns and initiatives.
His return to Faith in Action this past spring is an encore performance of sorts. He also previously served as Faith in Action’s director of training and formation. While in this role, he expanded the organization’s training program, sharpened the group’s racial equity lens and insisted the network of faith leaders go to persons living closest to the pain of oppression and isolation. It is because of his leadership, and his partnership with others, that Faith in Action’s clergy leaders stepped out of their pulpits or congregations and stepped onto the streets of Ferguson, Missouri in the aftermath of the fatal police shooting of Mike Brown. He challenged the international network to live up to its deepest moral values and to disrupt the status quo, a mission they’ve been on ever since.
Most notably, Rev. Herring’s leadership spans the nonprofit and academic arenas. He previously served as dean of students and assistant vice president for student life for the University of Louisville, as executive director of the Working Interfaith Network in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and as executive director of the Muhammad Ali Institute for Peace and Justice in Louisville, Kentucky. Regardless of the titles he’s held, his experience has repeatedly testified to a truth about his character; he is a resourceful problem-solver, a skilled administrator and an attentive leader. The people who work closest with Rev. Herring have noted he is charismatic yet substantive, strong but loving and driven but fair.
The 21st century movement for racial and social justice is fortunate to list him among the leaders reshaping how this nation utilizes faith to organize communities to achieve progress and change.
Rev. Herring is a devoted husband to Debbie Herring and the proud father of two.