The Rt. Rev. J. Jon Bruno has created the Bishop’s Chair for Environmental Science & Food Justice and named the Rev. Andrew K. Barnett to the new post at Campbell Hall Episcopal in North Hollywood, California.
“Our children and youth need to be equipped with skills rooted in science and ethics to address the serious effects of climate change and achieve greater environmental sustainability,” Bishop Bruno said announcing the new chair, through which he has charged Barnett with developing a curriculum to be offered for use in other schools within the Diocese of Los Angeles and beyond.
The curriculum will be linked with Bishop Bruno’s recently launched “Seeds of Hope” initiative that is helping local congregations provide nutrition education and locally grown fruit and vegetables on church sites, helping with food distribution to the needy in local neighborhoods. Recently awarded a $900,000 three-year county grant from the Los Angeles Health Department, Seeds of Hope assists more than 70 congregations in advancing their work of local food justice.
“Andy Barnett brings unique gifts to this work,” Bruno said of the Yale-educated priest, teacher, environmentalist, musician and founder of the Theodicy Jazz Collective, a group that has participated in recent diocesan meetings and toured nationally. Most recently Barnett has served the Darrow School of Lebanon, New York, as music program director, environmental science teacher, and head cross country coach, helping Darrow win its first cross country championship in school history.
“Campbell Hall is very excited to host the new bishop’s chair and welcome Andrew Barnett,” said the Rev. Canon Julian Bull, headmaster at Campbell Hall, which serves 1,100 students in grades K-12. “Our holistic program inspires students to address the real challenges of our times with courage and intelligence. Barnett’s work will help us raise awareness and take more pointed action in the complex arena of environmental sustainability.”
“I’m grateful for this opportunity to empower young leaders in the city, and to create replicable content for schools across the country,” Barnett said of his new appointment. “In the 21st century, loving our neighbors as ourselves now calls us to strive for stable climate, just society, and healthy global food systems. As people of faith and reason, we know we face inter-related crises that are dire and complex. Yet, in the face of daunting odds, a morally awake person is still called to action. And, that is in fact how you start a movement. You jump in and you partner with your community and you start anyway. You build projects that are big enough to matter and small enough to manage.”
Barnett – who begins the Campbell Hall appointment on October 27 – previously was a teaching fellow in the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies in New Haven, Connecticut, where he was also director of music and art at the Episcopal Church of St. Paul and St. James. For the past eight years, he has continued as artistic director of the Theodicy Jazz Collective. In addition to his master of divinity degree from Yale Divinity School and master of environmental management degree from Yale Environment School, Barnett holds a bachelor of arts in environmental studies from Oberlin College and a bachelor of arts in sacred music performance from Oberlin Conservatory of Music.
Born in Minneapolis, Barnett was ordained to the priesthood in 2012 in the Diocese of Minnesota.
With a 70-year history in Southern California, Campbell Hall is “a richly complex and textured community,” notes Bull, headmaster. “We are both progressive and traditional, with one of the most innovative schedules in the independent school world. We have a dynamic research-based educational program and a commitment to the deep wisdom of our religious traditions.”
Campbell Hall is an independent, co-educational, college preparatory day school for students in kindergarten through grade 12. A community of inquiry committed to academic excellence and the nurturing of decent, loving, and responsible human beings, Campbell Hall is located in North Hollywood, California. Learn more here.