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R. Skyler Oberst

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SPO_SkylerOR. Skyler Oberst is an active leader in the interfaith movement, both locally and nationally. Recently, he attended NAIN Connect in Atlanta and had the opportunity to meet with Ambassador Andrew Young on interfaith issues. Oberst has been a research contributor for the Pluralism Project at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass., where he worked closely with Diana Eck and other faith leaders.

He wanted nothing to do with religious diversity, until one day he saw attackers assault a group of his Muslim peers.

“Something shifted inside of me after that evening. I realized that the anguish and torment occurring in front of me was happening all over the world, and that in order to create a lasting peaceful world, action started not on the floor of the United Nations or the United States Senate, but in my heart and through my actions,” Oberst wrote in a recent letter to Harvard.

That event, he said, prompted him to start the Compassion Interfaith Society at EWU. He described the student group as a forum for understanding and appreciation. He’s also involved in Friends of Compassion, a group of Spokanites interested in exploring compassionate action.

He’s a SpokaneFAVS Foundation Board member.

Tracy Simmons

About Tracy Simmons

Tracy Simmons is an award winning journalist specializing in religion reporting, digital entrepreneurship and social journalism. In her 15 years on the religion beat, Simmons has tucked a notepad in her pocket and found some of her favorite stories aboard cargo ships in New Jersey, on a police chase in Albuquerque, in dusty Texas church bell towers, on the streets of New York and in tent cities in Haiti.
Simmons has worked as a multimedia journalist for newspapers across New Mexico, Texas and Connecticut. Currently she serves as the executive director of SpokaneFAVS.com, a digital journalism start-up covering religion news and commentary in Spokane, Wash. She is also a Lecture of Strategic Communication at the University of Idaho.

She also writes for The Spokesman-Review and for the Religion News Service.

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