The Desert Southwest Conference is staffed by leaders committed to learning and growing both professionally and personally. This diverse group is passionate about collaborating with the local church in creating new faith communities, nurturing leadership development, and resourcing transformational worship. Among the diverse colleagues at the Phoenix office are Billie K. Fidlin and David Topping. Both musical artists and advocates for justice.
DSC Appreciates Billie K. Fidlin
On February 12, 2016, Billie Fidlin, Director of Outreach Ministries at the Desert Southwest Conference was awarded the Church Women United Human Rights Award. This organization’s purpose and roots mirror the leadership that Billie is involved in through the Desert Southwest Conference, government agencies, and other non-profit organizations that she chairs or founded. Church Women United is a racially, culturally, theologically inclusive Christian women’s movement with a vision of Christian unity and prayerful action. In its founding year the group was invited to a conference at the White House on “How Women May Share in Post-War Policy Making.” Today, the dynamic force works to be prayerfully informed and proactive in addressing issues from the perspective of women, children, and families around the world regarding:
- Environmental Care
- Economic Justice
“Billie’s passion and enthusiasm combined with her ever-present concern for the less privileged and marginalized and her incredible network of contacts makes her an outstanding choice for this award.” -Rev. Anthony Tang, Director of Connectional Ministries
Something you might not know about Billie is that she is also an accomplished singer who toured professionally with the band, The Traumatics, and as a solo artist.
DSC Appreciates David Topping
On February 15, 2016, the nation and social media took a momentary break from politics to tune in to the 58th Annual Grammy Awards. Unless you were tuning in online midday on President’s Day, you might have missed the Best Choral Performance award which was won by Kansas City Chorale and the Phoenix Chorale for their performance from their 2015 album, Rachmaninoff: All Night Vigil. David Topping is a performing member of both groups and the Computer Systems Manager for the Desert Southwest Conference. In addition to supporting the technology needs of the Conference staff, leading workshops in each Conference District, David supports the local church to increase reach and presence by consulting, troubleshooting, and collaborating in:
- Website hosting and development
- Technology equipment purchases and installation
- Questions/issues about copyright
- Musical performances
“David is an amazing musician, teacher, and skilled member of the Communications team. His eye for detail and tireless heart for ministry is invaluable.” -Christina Dillabough, Director of Communications
Something you might not know about David is that he is an active Sidewalk Sunday School leader, Music Director, and Trustees member at Faith United Methodist Church, where his wife, Rev. Jody Topping, serves as pastor. David has also been actively involved in providing website consulting and hosting for Clergy for Justice: No Longer Silent (http://nolongersilent.org/), an ecumenical Arizona-based advocacy group calling for “an end to all religious and civil discrimination against any person based on sexual orientation.”
- To share a story or show your appreciation of Billie and/or David post a message on the Conference Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/dscumc.
- To find out more about Billie or David check out https://www.dscumc.org/staff and click on their photo.
- Sources: Merriam-Webster definitions (2-16-16) http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary