Sylvia Smythe has over 30 years experience as a church lay leader. In the wider community she has served as president for several non-profit boards. Throughout her professional life as a college and university educator, as a church leader, and with 501(C)(3) boards, she has brought diverse groups together to seek common ground.
As a Director at Citrus College, Sylvia brought different departments together to envision federal grant projects which subsequently established successful STEM and College Success programs. Equipping people to work together across campus departments, she led initiatives which increased student retention, graduation and transfer rates for underserved students. She supervised over 50 grant-appointed positions and managed budgets totaling ten million dollars. At USC she stepped into a sudden vacancy due to the death of a long-time Program Lead, and as the new Program Lead steered the TESOL/TEFL Master’s program to hire faculty, build curricula and expand the program’s international student presence.
In Episcopal churches Sylvia has led diverse groups to envision and create new programs; she’s chaired hiring committees for parish staff. She’s also been involved with capital campaigns, strategic plans, and led various church committees.
Sylvia and her husband (an Episcopal priest) moved to Arizona three years ago and are engaged in the Episcopal Church community. Since recently completing and appreciating the Best Skills/Best Churches Program, Sylvia looks forward to sharing best practices as the Faith Responder for Effective Communication & Handling Conflict.