Lucinda Kurtz has been on a life journey to help change the world. But through the years, her approach has changed dramatically. She began her career as a Women’s Studies professor and a political activist, eventually becoming Vice President of the National Women’s Political Caucus.
At age 36, the passing of her father had a profound affect on her. ”I was holding his hand when he passed over and experienced the energetic pull of his soul leaving his body,” she recounts. ”It changed my life and transformed my entire path. I realized there was a reality far deeper than I had understood up to that moment.”
Soon after, Lucinda began her Kellogg Fellowship. Lucinda pursued the question: How can we create an interconnected global community based on interdependent ecologic, economic, and spiritual values?
Throughout the Fellowship, she found that the greatest challenge in her new mindset was ”how to be a Kellogg Fellow with the external status of a leader in the world and say, ’Wait a second; I’m not just the position that I hold.’” She continues, ”The greatest challenge is to go deeply into myself and explore the inner paths and treasures I can find there.” She describes, ”I had come from the world of politics and academia where the intellect was king. Now I was moving into a realm where I knew I needed to integrate the mind and the spirit.” Lucinda decided that ”hope” was the work she could do in the world, and founded a nonprofit organization: Global Hopemakers. Through forming alliances and facilitating dialogue between people of different countries, the organization worked to create an interconnected global community. But Lucinda continued to be drawn to more personal ways of creating hope and healing in herself and others. She enrolled in the Barbara Brennan School of Healing and realized, ”Leadership is an internal process: The first responsibility is to bring health, harmony, and well-being to yourself and your own relationships. If you can’t do that, you can’t be an effective leader for positive change.” Now, as a healer, Lucinda works in private practice to help individuals ”release the old patterns that no longer work for them and move forward to be who they genuinely are.”
She also works in a number of community settings, including as cofounder of a spiritual retreat center in northern Michigan. Visitors go to the center to ”minimize the chatter of the world and touch the deeper source of wisdom that is in everybody,” Lucinda explains.
Lucinda also offers a series of monthly ”salons” in her community that bring people together to explore issues of common interest in an atmosphere that is non-confrontational. One salon, ”Conscious Eating,” for example, featured her husband, Oran Hesterman, Program Director for Food Systems at the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, along with the founder of the Slow Foods Chapter in Michigan, and an author and nutritionist. The guest speakers each addressed the issue and then participants were invited to share their ideas. Lucinda’s role is to ”create a safe container for dialogue where people can speak from their heart.” From the many twists and turns, Lucinda now feels at peace with where her path has led her. ”I feel I’m able to help others with the physical and emotional wounds they have in their lives.” She adds, ”I feel grateful I can make a contribution in my community around healing.”
Lucinda Kurtz was interviewed in July 2005.