About

Innovative Spirit helps liberal-minded individuals and small progressive communities achieve their goals with customized career development and human resources consulting solutions.

CAREER DEVELOPMENT

AND

OPENHEARTED HUMAN RESOURCES

A LETTER FROM Ebony C. Peace

As a teacher at heart, I have provided consulting and advisory services my whole career. I am passionate about helping organizations and people leverage their strengths, enjoy their work, and be the best they can be – so that the whole world benefits from their success.

My journey started almost 20 years ago when I attended Sweet Briar College, A woman’s college on 2,840 acres in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains with a core curriculum centered on preparing women to lead. Before I started college that fall, I took two summer courses: one in Human Resource Management and the other in Sociology at the University of Maryland College Park.

During college I completed multiple internships in human resources management including one at a law firm helping employees win against corporate employers who violated employment laws. During this time, I also began learning about career management and resumes from my school’s career center.

They called me their “poster child” because I always attended their career workshops when they were offered. Often, because the school only had 750 students at the time, I’d be the only person in attendance. This also meant I received a LOT of 1:1 attention from their experts in the Career Services department.

Sweet Briar College Alumni Career Panel

Years later, I was honored to be invited by my college to speak on an expert panel of distinguished alumni on offer career advice to current students.

I got so great at crafting resumes and understanding how to get job opportunities, that I started helping my friends. My friends became successful and started handing out my number.

I got phone calls from people I didn’t even know – asking me to help them with their career goals, find a job, an internship, or otherwise “fix” their resume.

From 2004-2007, I built up clientele purely from referrals. I also volunteered my services through the Mt Jezreel Baptist Church’s JEM – Jezreel Employment Ministry.

At this time, I knew I had something special going on. I loved what I did and felt deeply fulfilled whenever someone I worked with achieved their goals. I can’t tell you how awesome it feels when someone gets the boost to their income that they’ve been praying for, or they get out of an abusive job situation into an environment that treats them like they matter.

Teaching career tip to participants at an anime convention

In 2008, I formally started my first private practice which I called Eidolon Career Solutions. I was known as The Career Architect™. For the next 11 years I worked mostly with those with unique barriers to the workplace such as the LGBTQ+ community, “Goths, Geeks, and Freaks”, and other marginalized groups.

I spoke at conferences, anime conventions, and more. I also put on my own workshops in person for my clients and the general public.

I also was invited by the state of Maryland to provide my expertise to help craft implementation ideas when the federal Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act in 2006 was reauthorized in 2019/2020.

During this time, I was featured in the Washington City Paper: Work Is Hell – Washington City Paper because of my expertise and success with helping not just marginalized job seekers, but job seekers in unconventional careers.

It takes extra effort and expertise to help those with additional layers of unique obstacles. I have been proud and blessed to be able to support others in this way.

In 2019, I opened up a wellness sanctuary in Wheaton, Maryland, where I provided career facilitation and resume services for almost three years. Here, I also supervised a staff of other wellness professionals and gave a business building workshop to the Wheaton Chamber of Commerce.

After three years of operating the wellness sanctuary which averaged a 4-star rating on Yelp, I let it go after reprioritizing my life and giving myself space to experiment with other opportunities. During this time, I still continued to serve my private career consulting clients.

Then, I shifted gears by working in the federal government as a Chief Learning Officer (CLO). I oversaw the learning of over 3,000 employees while providing support in diversity, inclusion, procurement, and organizational effectiveness. I also attended and graduated from Meadville Lombard Theological School with a master’s in leadership studies.

Now, I’ve returned to private practice once again, but as a Spiritual Career Director here at Innovative Spirit and as a Lay Community Minister at Sunstone Chapel, my other private practice ministry.

At Sunstone Chapel, I focus on guest preaching and facilitating faith-based curriculums and leadership development. By faith based, I’m talking about liberal, inclusive progressive faith – far from conservative.

Career Consulting at the Wellness Spa

It’s from this perspective – the connection between my faith and professional background that brings me to spiritual entrepreneurship. I am filled with optimism and joy at the many ways Innovative Spirit will be of service. 

Some of my Qualifications and Experience include:

  • Master of Arts in Leadership Studies (Meadville Lombard Theological School)
  • Master of Science in Strategic Human Resources and Organization Development (Johns Hopkins University)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Sociology (Sweet Briar College), Law & Society minor
  • Certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR)
  • Clinical Sociologist and college instructor of Sociology
  • Certified Career Services Provider (CCSP)
  • Certified Global Career Development Facilitator (Instructor)
  • Former Chief Learning Officer in the Federal Government
  • Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility Strategist
  • Recipient of The Charles Billings Prize in Preaching
  • Lay Community Minister at Sunstone Chapel
  • Former President of the Maryland Career Development Association
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workplace Certificate (University of South Florida)
  • PhD level continuing education in Organizational Leadership (Univ. MD Eastern Shore) and Sociology (Howard Univ)
  • Supervisory experience and experience training supervisors how to supervise
  • Published Author (newsletters, anthologies)
  • Awarded as one of the top 10 out of 49 full and part-time faculty to receive the highest Faculty Evaluation scores by students; received 5.98/6.0 March 2011 term for Business Ethics course
  • 18+ years’ experience in human resources overseeing and administering full-cycle recruitment, compensation, benefits, employee engagement, employee relations, training, leadership development, and organizational effectiveness
  • Presented at multiple conferences such as but not limited to UUA General Assembly, National Career Development Annual Conference, Maryland Career Development Annual Conference, Anime conventions, National Association of African Americans in Human Resources (NAAAHR), Raising The Bar workforce development conference, Paint Branch Unitarian Universalist Women’s Retreat
  • Member of National Career Development Association (NCDA), Association for Applied & Clinical Sociology (AACS), Society for Human Resources Management, and The Unitarian Universalist Society for Community Ministries (UUSCM)
Marching for our lives for common sense gun control

WHO I SERVE

(1) Those seeking purpose driven careers and life-long learners interested in growing their leadership skills and income

(2) Those seeking open-hearted human resources advisory services to meet your goals while practicing your values (Ex: congregational personnel committees, Board of Trustees, Heads of Staff)

(3) Communities seeking an event speaker on topics such as leading and caring for your people, including volunteers, members, and paid staff

 

MISSION

The mission of Innovative Spirit is to empower small liberal faith-based organizations and self-motivated spiritual individuals to achieve their workplace and career goals with self-care and love.

Administration and management within faith communities is spiritual, holy work. We believe everyone has a life’s purpose and our own lives and the communities we’re a part of are enriched when do what makes us come alive. 

As a women and minority owned spiritually driven small business, Innovative Spirit is honored to do its part to make the world a more just, compassionate, and welcoming place through service. 

 

‘SPIRITUAL DIRECTION’ VERSUS ‘SPIRITUAL CAREER DIRECTION’

Unlike ‘spiritual direction’ where someone helps another person deepen their relationship with the divine, cultivate their ability to discern the holy in one’s life, and grow in their spirituality, my ‘spiritual career direction’ focuses on the tangible, technical, and spiritual aspects of following one’s career calling.

I focus on clarifying what someone is called to do at this moment in their life and helping them lean into it with self-care, confidence, and support. I do this through my signature process, The Career Calling Path which is a 30-day program that can include self-introspection, resume updating, cover letter creation, reference letters, negotiating salary, and helping them find and apply to jobs and do well in their interviews.

On this note, my spiritual career direction is also distinct from ‘career coaching’ in general, because I focus on connecting next steps with a client’s overall life’s purpose and career calling – not just on a short-term goal. I ensure that short term goals connect to long term goals, values, and deeply rooted priorities grounded in an interconnectedness with their unique purpose and/or the divine.

INVITATIONS

(1) Please join my email list for opportunities and resources that empower you to achieve your workplace and career goals with self-care and love.

(2) Come hang out with me and like-minded folks in my Facebook Group, Innovative Spirit: Where Liberal-minded Job Seekers Achieve.

In the spirit of Mahatma Ghandi, may we “be the change we wish to see in the world”.

Yours, in Service
Ebony C. Peace
Spiritual Career Director, Innovative Spirit

The Diversity and Anti-Racism Transformation Team at Paint Branch Unitarian Universalist Church ran the above notice in their weekly newsletter