“At core I am a contemplative. The work I do–in art, in spirituality, in community–is rooted in listening.”
Scott Neely serves as minister at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Spartanburg, SC. Neely is a founding board member and strategist for Speaking Down Barriers, an organization that uses facilitated dialogue to build our life together across the differences that divide us. He is a graduate of Wofford College and Harvard Divinity School. In April 2015 he presented a TEDx talk on race and racism entitled “What Will I Teach My Son?”
In addition to Speaking Down Barriers, Neely has helped with the development of these community initiatives:
- The Fund to Support Latinx Immigrants, a statewide coalition of immigration advocacy groups to provide direct assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic to individuals and families who are Latinx immigrants in South Carolina.
- LGBTQ Theologies, a coalition of people of faith – individuals, congregations, and clergy – building a network of support for the LGBTQ+ community and issues in Upstate SC.
- The Project for Community Transformation, an initiative to help individuals, organizations, and congregations energize and thrive, for the purpose of serving their communities more effectively. This project merged with Speaking Down Barriers in 2017.
Neely has been a lecturer in religion and the humanities at the University of South Carolina-Upstate and Wofford College.