Lutheran Services Florida leader soaks up LCS Northwest vibe
When you have friends and mentors in sister agencies, you’re always learning, always growing. This week, our CEO and President, David Duea, hosted a visit from his counterpart at Lutheran Services Florida, Sam Sipes.
As the crow flies, a pair of American nonprofit leaders couldn’t be much farther apart. But David and Sam have known each other and been members of the same CEO group for 8 years. The two agencies have some common lines of service, including refugee and immigrant assistance, mental health care, and crime victim services.
Both organizations also have reached significant milestones. Lutheran Services Florida is marking its 40th anniversary this year, while LCS Northwest celebrated our centennial last year.
Each agency has unique challenges, as well. In Florida, Sam’s team must contend with powerful state politicians who hold unwelcoming attitudes toward migrants. Hurricanes are another regular threat that we don’t have to fear up here.
Sam visited the Santa for Seniors program in Tacoma and Compass Housing in Seattle. He compared notes with David on topics such as expanding Santa for Seniors to Florida. And he met with our Executive Team to share his three-decade journey in Lutheran Services leadership.
David plans to make a similar trip to Florida in the near future.
“Sam has been a mentor and friend for the last eight years,” David said. “It is one of the benefits of the Lutheran Services network. We freely share what we have learned and the mistakes we have made.”