Behind the scenes of all the great work that DJJ has been doing is one very important person, our trusty Treasurer Lou Echeandia. DJJ is so grateful for everything that he does.
Lou handles all of the finances of DJJ. He manages payroll, taxes, expense reimbursements, and so, so much more, all voluntarily. Without his major contributions, DJJ -- and our fiscal sponsor Congregation T'chiyah -- would not be able to function the way that we can. Beyond his volunteer work for DJJ, Lou enjoys Contra dancing. He is married to Syma, another amazing DJJ leader, former President of T'chiyah, and member of our planning team for our first-ever named awards ceremony.
Syma tells us that in college Lou took a class on account management but didn't use the skills he learned until Syma "voluntold" him to do the Treasurer responsibilities that after a month, she was no longer excited about maintaining with their dance community, the Oakland County Traditional Dance Society.
Eventually Lou took on the Treasurer role at T'chiyah. When he got started, Rabbi Alana was their only employee (R'Alana works 2 days a week for T'chiyah and 3 days a week for DJJ). With a fiscally sponsored organization and more staff people, the Treasurer role has grown more complicated, but according to Syma (and according to us!), Lou remains very dedicated because he's very concerned that our community should be ready for an audit and that everything is done right, fair, and equitably. He cares that everyone's paid on time, is reimbursed for their expenses on time, and gets the benefits they're entitled to.
He'll work until late at night to fully support T'chiyah and DJJ. Lou feels good being the behind-the-scenes support person, backing up leaders and staff as they go to rallies, marches, and council meetings. Lou makes sure that we have the support system to do the work we do. It's his view of how he does social justice work. The book maintenance and timely financial reporting he does are crucial to making sure that we're sustainable for the long haul. Thank you Lou. Thank you so much!