2017 Courageous Love Award
Elizabeth “Liz” Trotter, the 2017 recipient of the Courageous Love Award, is a lifelong member of Community Church – her parents were active members as she grew up. She is now serving her third term as president and last year established a Stewardship Ministry at CCUU to strengthen our financial position. With all of that, however, her heart lies with community ministry and social justice issues, and it is there that she makes an ongoing commitment to CCUU and the larger community. Working with Reverend Jim, she formed a Community Ministry (social justice and community outreach) after Katrina and has actively chaired it since, inspiring a group of our members to reach out and make a difference by partnering with other groups with similar goals. Through her efforts, we have supported non-profit organizations such as the Red Flame Hunters – young black boys in the Mardi Gras Indian tradition –Second Harvest Food Bank, Unity for the Homeless, Edible Schoolyard, VOA Christmas Wish Program, Days-4-Girls, Mama Maji, Lead Lab, Inc., 350Louisiana, SisterHearts, and now Lyfe of Dance for at-risk, young black girls, among others. Most recently, she educated us on the modern sanctuary movement and was instrumental in getting the congregation to vote in favor of publicly declaring CCUU a sanctuary congregation, as well as signing the UUA-UUSC Declaration of Conscience.
It is Liz who insisted that we switch from calling our committees to “ministries” to further our understanding and commitment to the mission of each ministry. She also uses the CCUU e-mail list to keep us all informed about social justice issues – affordable housing, mass incarceration, sanctuary, criminalization of minority groups, and others – and she publicizes the work of the UUSC and the New Orleans Center for Ethical Living and Social Justice Renewal. All of this while she works full time as a paralegal, maintains a home for herself and her husband, and mothers two grown children.
We at CCUU take great pride in all that Liz has accomplished, and we work under her leadership to become increasingly effective members of our larger New Orleans community.
Liz definitely stands on the side of love – not just this year when she won the award but throughout her life. It is one of her defining characteristics.