The latest from Compassion & Choices

Constituency Work Grows in Prominence

C&C’s recent African-American and faith-based outreach efforts bring meaningful connections and an esteemed addition to our board of directors.

“I have devoted my life to teaching people that our creator is a loving God who does not want people to suffer,” says Rev. Madison T. Shockley, pastor of the Pilgrim United Church of Christ in Carlsbad, California, and new Compassion & Choices board member. “That’s why I am honored to help Compassion & Choices expand end-of-life care options that enable people to die peacefully at home, surrounded by their loved ones.”

A native of Los Angeles, Rev. Shockley was educated at Harvard College and the University of Missouri-St. Louis. He holds the Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in New York City and has done advanced graduate work at Claremont Graduate University in New Testament Studies. He has long been involved with Compassion & Choices, and served as a volunteer advocate and spokesperson during the campaign to pass California’s law. Rev. Shockley was appointed to the organization’s African-American Leadership Council (AALC) last November. Other outreach over the past month includes our constituency team’s Brandi Alexander and Donna Smith presenting at the National Baptist Convention Christian Education week in Jacksonville, Florida, to 200 members, resulting in Compassion & Choices being invited to additional upcoming events. They, along with some of our AALC members, also attended and hosted exhibit tables at the NAACP annual convention, the National Urban League annual convention and the National Black Nurses Association national convention. Numerous polls show a majority of Americans across the ethnic, political and religious spectrum support medical aid in dying. Our constituency initiatives aim to ensure the end-of-life choice movement is inclusive for all.