Meet the team.
Rev. Marian Edmonds-Allen
“I am excited to join Parity, an organization that is at the forefront of the intersection of LGBTQ and faith. The LGBTQ world has seen monumental changes in the last few years, and it is now very clear that the national focus is on where religion and LGBTQ meet. Parity has had an incredible impact in supporting LGBTQ clergy and youth, and will expand its influence and impact to meet the growing needs of LGBTQ persons and their allies during this time of change in the world.”
Rev. Marian Edmonds Allen has worked with youth and families in various denominations and settings throughout the country for more than 20 years, focusing on strengths-based interventions and supports to affirm beliefs and faith practices for LGBTQ persons. Marian is the co-founder of the LGBTQ Youth Continuum of Care, and is an expert in the intersection of faith and LGBTQ identities and practice, interfaith relationships, youth suicide and homelessness. In 2013, Marian was named Person of the Year by Q Salt Lake for her visionary leadership, and in 2015 was named a Petra Fellow for her work with LGBTQ homeless youth. She is formerly Executive Director of OUTreach Resource Centers, growing the single center to five centers. Marian also served as the National Program Director of the Family Acceptance Project and Executive Director of the Utah Pride Center. Marian attended Western Theological Seminary and Eden Theological Seminary, and has served in many pastoral capacities, including church planting, parish ministry and chaplaincy. She is married, has four children, and is a passionate skier and outdoor enthusiast.
Emerging Pastors Community Organizer
“My dream is for Parity to become an open table where all LGBTQ people can find fellowship and support so they can delve into and faithfully embrace their authentic call.”
Shelley Donaldson is a Southerner living in the cold north of Chicago. A graduate of the University of West Georgia, she set off to follow her call into ministry at McCormick Seminary where she received her Master’s of Divinity in 2012. Currently, Shelley works with Senior High youth in Chicago, and also serves the larger church working on the new interactive resource for the Interreligious Stance of the Presbyterian Church (USA), as well as continuing to cultivate and strengthen interfaith relationships in the Chicago area. Shelley began working with Parity in 2014, and through that, began to discern her own distinct call into ordered ministry. In her free time, she paints, throws clay, and attempts to create the perfect biscuit recipe. She hopes to empower those in ministry, and those seeking ordainment, to find the creative ways in which they can live out their distinctive calls, all while embracing the beautiful and complex people that God has made them to be.