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RocACTS mourns the loss of Dr. Robert Harrison, III M.D.


RocACTS mourns the loss of PAB Board Member Dr. Robert Harrison, III M.D., who passed on May 3, 2023. Dr. Harrison came to Rochester in 1993 where he worked in his specialty of Internal Medicine. Dr. Harrison was an original Board member of the Police Accountability Board.

We are deeply saddened by the loss of Dr. Harrison. He was an active and deeply supportive proponent of Police Accountability. He recently attended the PADA Strategy Committee meeting, and in his way nudged them to put more effort into their work before making it public. To work with Dr. Harrison is to work with a man who desired everyone to work to their personal level of excellence. 

RocACTS sends its sincere condolences and prayers to the family of Dr. Harrison. We ask that you keep Dr. Harrison’s wife Gale and their family in your prayers as they cope with the loss of their loved one.


Dr. Harrison will be missed.

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RocACTS Religious Leaders speak out on the Massacre in Buffalo, May 14, 2022

On May 14 of this year, ten of our neighbors in Buffalo were killed while grocery shopping.  The young man who is alleged to have retooled the weapon he used published his racist philosophy in 180 pages on social media.  His perceived fear that black people, Jewish people and people of other minorities were trying to replace white Americans is due not only to the dark corners of the internet but to “replacement theory,” a simplistic, hate-based false assumption re. population change.  It was chanted in Charlottesville in August 2017.  “Jews will not replace us,” “You will not replace us” and similar words describing killings are in the documents from massacres at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand where 51 people were targeted and killed, at a Walmart in El Paso where 23 Hispanic people were shot down and killed, at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh where 11 people were killed. In 2015, nine congregants during Bible Study were murdered at the Mother Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal church in Charleston, South Carolina.  Again the shooter was inflamed by racist rhetoric.  And we hear some TV personalities and some politicians fan the flame of fear and violence with similar words that “entice, recruit and support white supremacists.”


Each piece of legislation that further marginalizes people of color is part of the problem; each easily accessible assault weapon is part of the problem; each unlicensed, untrained, unregulated, unauthorized assault weapon user is part of the problem.  Each social media platform that espouses and recruits white supremacists is part of the problem. Every person that does not seek ways to stop the hate and stop the violence is part of the problem.  


We can each listen to and learn from our religious leaders and our marginalized neighbors.  We can stand up and speak out against white supremacy, racism and violence.


We, the Religious Leaders Caucus of RocACTS, the Rochester Alliance of Communities Transforming Society, stand in solidarity with other faith-based organizations in calling for love of our neighbor, enforceable background checks and common sense gun laws. We ask our U.S. Senators to address the issue of gun safety/public safety immediately. Hate speech encourages and fuels white supremacy and so we ask that hate speech be sanctioned including sanctioning any of their own members who have used hate speech.  We urge all to seriously consider endorsing the Domestic Terrorism Act of 2022 (HR 350).


We call on every person to stand up and say “gun violence is a national health emergency; enough is enough; stop the violence.”


Dr. Denise Mack, Chair, RocACTS Religious Leader’s Caucus


Dr. Gayle Harrison, President, RocACTS Board


Virginia Fifield, Associate, Sisters of Mercy, Member RocACTS board

Endorsed by Dr. Muhammad Shafiq, Rev. Dr. William Wilkinson, Rev. Robert Werth, Rev. Rebecca Segers, Rev. Canon Dr. C. Denise Yarborough, Dr. Angela Sims, Rev. Tedd Pullano, Rev. Doug Stewart, Rev. Ed Palumbos, Rev. Dr. Stephen Cady, Rev. Jim Schwartz, Rev. Brian Cool, Rev. Susan Shafer, Downtown United Presbyterian Church Session, Rev. Shari Halliday-Quan, Sr. Beth La Valley, Rev. Richelle Goff, Rev. Lori Vail, Rev. Keith Patterson, Dr. Tabassam Javed, GRCC, Greater Rochester Community of Churches, Rabbi David Abrahams, Rev. Dr. Lynn Acquafondata, Rev. Myra Brown, Rev. Peter Peters, Churches of the Assumption & Resurrection Social Justice Team Ministry, Elder Ralph Carter, Beth Lilach, Laurie Mahoney, Debbie Rosenfeld, Carlos Santana, Deacon Jim Fien, Elder Jonathan Nwagaraocha, Kathleen McGrail, the Very Rev. Ken Pepin, Ruth Marchetti, Brother Peter Veitch, OSB, the Cathedral Community Social Ministry Committee, Rev. Hans Irmer, Rev. Ernest M. Krug, MD, Deacon David Palma, Barry Swan and more. 


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Executive Assistant

Click here for Job Description.

Interested applicants can apply by sending an email with your:

  1. Cover letter

  2. Resume


Submit application documents to Ellie Stauffer at 

Reading the Paper

“The first step in addressing racism in society and in the church is to acknowledge its persistence in ourselves and our institutions and in cultural attitudes.”

~Marvin L. Krier Mich, The Challenge and Spirituality of Catholic Social Teaching 

   One of  RocACTS Founders


WE ARE An interfaith,

multi-racial organization, working to empower 
communities to
transform society

An interfaith community-organizing project of urban and suburban congregations shaping the political, social and economic decisions that impact our lives.


Roc/ACTS is open to all denominations and community organizations who support our mission. Members of our congregations and organizations participate in task forces, working on issues that confront our community.

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