BY ISN STAFF | July 16, 2018
The Board of Directors of Catholic Mobilizing Network (CMN), a sponsored ministry of the Congregation of St. Joseph under the leadership of CSJ Ministries, announces the appointment of Krisanne Vaillancourt Murphy as its new executive director. She succeeds Karen Clifton, the organization’s founding executive director.
Moving forward, Karen Clifton will serve on the CMN’s Board of Directors. “Through an answered prayer, God provided a passionate, qualified executive director for CMN in Krisanne Vaillancourt Murphy. Krisanne joined CMN last year as Managing Director, and I have mentored her to assume this position. I am energized by the strong staff at CMN and its plans within the states and nationally to educate, motivate and activate Catholics to eliminate public killings and work towards a culture of life. As a Board member, I will continue to work collaboratively with the other board members, organizations, and CMN supporters to fulfill CMN’s mission,” said Clifton.
As executive director, Vaillancourt Murphy will build upon Clifton’s legacy of establishing and leading CMN’s mission to end the death penalty and promote restorative justice. At its helm, she will ensure CMN remains a strong and effective national leader in these critical areas and play a key leadership role in program development and planning for the future of CMN.
Krisanne Vaillancourt Murphy brings to the position over 20 years of experience in nonprofit administration, faith-based advocacy, strategic planning, and fundraising. For more than a decade, she served as senior church relations staff at Bread for the World, most recently as Senior Associate for National Catholic Engagement. Vaillancourt Murphy focused on global poverty advocacy campaigns, especially with Evangelicals and Catholics. She is co-author of Advocating for Justice: An Evangelical Vision for Transforming Systems and Structures, published by Baker Books (June 2016), and for four years taught at Eastern University’s Graduate School of Leadership and Development.
From 2003 to 2005, Vaillancourt Murphy served as the Executive Director of Witness for Peace. She has a Master in Theology degree from Weston Jesuit School of Theology, now Boston College School of Theology and Ministry.
“I am honored to be part of CMN and follow in the path of its inspiring and talented founder, Karen Clifton. I am thrilled to be part of CMN’s work to transform the criminal justice system, first by ending the death penalty. My deepest sense of call to this ministry lies in the belief that all life is sacred and that all those who have caused or been impacted by crime should be treated with dignity and have the opportunity for redemption and healing. I am passionate about CMN’s core mission—to implement effective and meaningful ways to promote life over death and animate the national Catholic imagination toward more restorative approaches to harm,” said Vaillancourt Murphy.
“The Board of Directors wishes to offer our sincerest gratitude and appreciation to Karen Clifton for her decade of passionate, influential and generous service in founding and leading CMN to be a national educator and advocate to end the use of the death penalty and to promote restorative justice in our Church as well as in the cross-cutting sectors in our society. We are delighted to have found in Krisanne Vaillancourt Murphy the important collaborative leadership skills and gifts we need to journey into the future at this time when we are experiencing agreement from leaders across the spectrum about the need for real transformation of our criminal justice system,” said Mary Novak, CMN’s Chair of the Board of Directors.
Sr. Janet Fleischhacker, executive director of CSJ Ministries, added “Krisanne’s and Karen’s visionary collaboration to ensure a smooth and effective transition of the organization has been inspiring and a great model; we look forward to their continued collective wisdom in their new roles going forward at this critical moment in our Church and in our world.”