De’Amon Harges – faculty member of the Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) Institute, Community Organizer, Creator of the Learning Tree, chairperson of the Grassroots Grantmakers Association Board, and featured in the new documentary “The Antidote: On Kindness in America” – is a frequent speaker on ABCD in secular and religious groups around the world, and is a layperson at Broadway UMC, Indianapolis, IN. De’Amon’s role is to listen and discover the gifts, passions and dreams of citizens in his community, and to find ways to utilize them in order to build community, economy, and mutual “delight.” The bulk of De’Amon’s work is based on the principles and practices of the Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) that brings neighbors and institutions together to discover the power of being a good neighbor. De’Amon builds on what is already present and in place in the neighborhood, using those formally undiscovered assets to connect and empower rather than working only from the community’s needs and deficits. De’Amon now describes his role on this planet as a social banker. He utilizes the intangible currencies that are cultivated and used by human assets and relationships to build a more abundant community.
Michael Mather is the pastor of First United Methodist Church of Boulder since 2020. Prior to that he served two congregations in Indiana for 34 years. He is the author of Having Nothing, Possessing Everything: Finding Abundant Communities in Unexpected Places. He graduated with an M.Div. from Drew University Theological School in Madison, New Jersey. He was the Perkins Lecturer at First United Methodist Church of Wichita Falls, Texas in 2020. He currently serves on the Advisory Board of the Louisville Institute and is a member of the Faculty of the Asset Based Community Development Institute at DePaul University. Mike is married to Kathy Licht (for 42 years) and is the father of two and the grandfather of one!
Mike and De’Amon have been friends for 23 years.