Over the past two years, Ben Lomond Quaker Center, located in Ben Lomond, Calif., has faced the challenges of the COVID pandemic and forest fires. The engagement of Friends who have given generously their prayers, time, talent, and financial contributions has allowed Quaker Center to remain open, continuing to provide both online and in-person opportunities for spiritual development, fellowship, and Quaker education.
Bob Fisher and Susan Wilson stepped down as directors in early September. Quaker Center’s new director is Nico Wright, who returned to California after 20 years in Mexico City, Mexico. Wright is the former director of Casa de los Amigos and a member of Mexico City Meeting. Joining him is Emily Carroll as associate director, and Ben Hofvendahl as maintenance technician. They are responsible for guiding the care of 83 acres of redwood forest in the Santa Cruz Mountains of California, and for managing a full schedule of visitors and programs.
Quaker Center is a self-service conference and retreat center an hour and a half south of San Francisco. Quaker Center was operated by American Friends Service Committee from 1949 to 1982. Since then the Ben Lomond Quaker Center Association—an independent, nonprofit, tax-exempt religious corporation—has carried forward Friends witness and stewardship.