Thank you for visiting us online! I relish opportunities to meet with students, connect with colleagues, welcome visitors to our Center, and build community – across campus and around the globe. Below is a bit about my background and interests. Do email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a time to chat. Hope to see you soon!
Alexander Levering Kern is a Quaker, ecumenical and interfaith leader, widely-published poet and writer, educator, and chaplain. Alex serves as the first Executive Director of the Center for Spirituality, Dialogue and Service (CSDS) at Northeastern University in Boston, leading the school’s campus ministries and developing new models of campus dialogue and global citizenship formation. Northeastern’s pioneering work has been recognized by the Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC) and White House Interfaith and Community Service Challenge.
Prior to coming to Northeastern, Alex served as Executive Director of Cooperative Metropolitan Ministries (CMM), greater Boston’s oldest interfaith social justice network, and as Protestant chaplain at Brandeis University. Alex co-founded the Interfaith Youth Initiative (IFYI) – a dynamic peacemaking and leadership program for high school, college, and graduate theological students. As an educator, Alex has served as an adjunct faculty member, speaker, panelist, or consultant at institutions including Harvard Divinity School and Pluralism Project, Brandeis University, Pendle Hill Quaker Center, Andover Newton Theological School, Hebrew College, Boston University School of Theology, the Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), and Merrimack College’s Center for Jewish-Christian-Muslim Relations.
Editor of the anthology Becoming Fire: Spiritual Writing from Rising Generations, Alex’s poems, essays, and articles appear in Spiritus, the African American Review, Huffington Post, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Georgetown Review, Caribbean Writer, Ibbetson Street, and many other publications. His writing and organizing work engages issues of contemplative and engaged spirituality, religion and the arts, Quakerism, and the interfaith quest for peace, justice, and ecological sustainability. His volunteer professional work has been covered by the Washington Post, Boston Globe, Harvard Gazette, and other media.
A product of Quaker education at Sidwell Friends School, Pendle Hill, and Guilford College, where he earned his BA in Religious Studies, History, and African-American Studies, Alex also studied at Vassar College and received his MDiv. from Andover Newton Theological School and a graduate certificate in ecumenism from the Boston Theological Institute. He has represented Quakers at gatherings of the World Council of Churches in Geneva, Harare, Zimbabwe and Porto Alegre, Brazil.
Alex has traveled, studied, and worked in post-earthquake Haiti, post-apartheid Southern Africa, Cold War Europe, the Middle East, Hiroshima, Brazil, rural Honduras, and with Northeastern students on interfaith pilgrimage from Selma to St. Louis and Ferguson in the age of #BlackLivesMatter. In 2009, he traveled to Nigeria with a U.S. State Department-supported delegation, training young civil society leaders to address interethnic and interreligious conflict. Born in Washington, DC, he now lives in Somerville, Massachusetts with his wife Rebecca Grunko, and their children, Elias and Ruthanna. His interests include hiking in the outdoors, travel, live music, collecting books, volunteering, and chaperoning field trips with his kids’ classmates and friends!