Reverend Ross Foti

About

Gifted in a diversity of disciplines including minister, songwriter, musician, speaker, facilitator, director, project manager, and innovator, Reverend Ross’ career has spanned more than three decades.  He has created a variety of avenues for bringing good into the world and assisting others in knowing the beauty of who they are.  Ross is dedicated to uplifting the consciousness and vibration of humanity through his mindful development of projects, programs, and curricula that speak directly to the heart of individuals as well as entire communities. His latest venture, Herestar, is laying a global foundation for finding and appreciating the good everywhere and in everything. For more details on Ross’ ever-expanding career, please see below.

  • Ross received a Bachelors Degree in Non-Western Civilization from Allegheny College with a senior thesis focused on painting and poetry during the T’ang and Sung dynasties in China.
  • Ross created and grew a successful landscape design and build company with a 3/4 acre nursery of Sonoran desert plant materials in the Coachella Valley, introducing xeroscaping to a lawn-happy culture in the 1980s. Created and run with his partner Jack Tremaine, their clients included Bob and Dolores Hope, Frank and Barbara Sinatra, Hal and Martha Wallis, Eunice Johnson of the Johnson Publishing Family in Chicago, and Eisenhower Medical Center where they landscaped the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center, a courtyard in the Betty Ford Center, The Uhlein Administration Building, and The Hal B Wallis Research Building.
  • While working for Hal Wallis and his wife, the actress Martha Hyer, Ross got to hold the Oscar statuette for the film, “Casablanca” at the Wallis’ home in Holmbly Hills in Los Angeles. (Hal Wallis produced Casablanca; the Oscar was heavy!!!)
  • In 1987, Ross and Jack created The Trefoti Foundation at Eisenhower Medical Center, a foundation that provided cash grants for non-medical needs to people with HIV/AIDS.
  • A gifted songwriter and performer, Ross wrote a trilogy of songs based on his experiences of losing a partner and friends to HIV and performed it with Patty Larkin and other musicians in a concert for the first public unfolding of the National AIDS Memorial Quilt on the Mall in Washington, DC in October 1987.
  • In 1988 Ross moved to Amsterdam for 6 months to get some perspective on his life and to experience a progressive culture dealing with human issues in productive and inclusive ways.
  • He returned to Northern California, studied organic agriculture in Bolinas in Marin County and became involved in the Sonoma County Organic Farm Movement, working alongside the Farallon Institute and other non-profits and for-profits to introduce organic produce into conventional supermarkets. During this time, he sat on a committee that organized the first Sonoma County Organically Grown Week – a series of community programs that culminated in an all-organic dinner with Alice Waters as our guest. This was 1991, long before organic was anywhere near the public consciousness and before Whole Foods became as ubiquitous as it is now.
  • Ross moved to Rome, Italy in 1995 studying Italian language and culture while working for a company making and selling English-language Italian- dance music to clubs in France, Belgium, Germany, and Portugal.
  • Back in America in 1997, he settled again in Northern California where he designed gardens in Santa Rosa, Petaluma, Sonoma, Mill Valley, San Rafael, and Tiburon.
  • He began his formal studies toward practitioner and ministry in 1998 under Rev. Dr. Edward Viljoen at The Santa Rosa Church of Religious Science.
  • He moved to Santa Barbara in 2000 and designed and project-managed the transformation of seven 1930s craftsmen bungalows into a modern condominium project within the strict design requirements of the historical district in which they stand. This 6-year project involved continuous interface with governmental agencies, the California State Real Estate Board, and daily engagement overseeing contractors and tradesmen for the LLC that owned the property.
  • While in Santa Barbara, he furthered his spiritual studies at Agape International Spiritual Center in Culver City, California, under the direction of Rev. Dr. Michael Beckwith. He provided piano accompaniment for meditation  and was an occasional featured artist at Sunday morning services as well.
  • He received his Professional Practitioner license from North Hollywood Church of Religious Science in 2006 and once the Santa Barbara Project was complete, was hired by The United Centers for Spiritual Living in its Burbank office as Manager of Growth, Expansion, and Ministerial Support (GEMS). As GEMS Manager, he updated and redesigned a paper-wasting culture into a productive and more efficient department.  Overseeing licensing and credentials for Ministers, Practitioners, and Covenanted Communities, Reverend Ross brought groundbreaking procedures and practices online to expand the capacity of the organization to better serve its constituents. He created and managed the Professional Standards and Ethics Team, updated Codes of Ethics for Ministers and Practitioners, troubleshot conflicts and gathered teams to resolve issues throughout the global communities, and in doing so, set a high-standard of customer service for communities and constituents.
  • In 2008, Reverend Ross became certified as a Peacemaker during a week-long intensive at Unity Village in Missouri through a program designed and facilitated by Rev. Dr. Gary Simmons.
  • In 2010, Ross received a Masters Degree in Consciousness Studies from Holmes Institute, and took a year off from organizational leadership.
  • During that year, Reverend Ross took the opportunity to explore the world of money.  After passing all Federal security clearances, he worked for a year at the Federal Reserve Bank in Denver, Colorado, studying its culture while cooking for the Bank Examiners, the Fed Agents, the Security Force, the money shredders and handlers, and the Board and Management staff. It was again, another window into the fascinating world of money – working above a cache of one-billion US dollars underneath him every single day!
  • In  2011, he was called to Claremont Center for Spiritual Living where he served as a staff minister, an assistant minister, and an associate minister in a graying traditional church community. It was during this time that reverend Ross reinvigorated the community with new and original services and began his interest in creating curricula to empower students to be bolder and kinder, to themselves and with one another.
  • In his eighteen months at Claremont, he wrote and facilitated new curricula, ran successively more successful courses, one after another, created a Sunday Evening community, Begin Within, a weekly yoga community with participants aged eight to eighty-five.  While there, he created a dynamic Easter Service, a new Christmas Eve Service, and a new Good Friday service. He also created and developed a choir under the direction of KC Van Horne.
  • In August of 2013, Reverend Ross took a six-week sabbatical to Germany, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Boston, New York City, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Provincetown, Massachusetts.  One of the highlights of the European leg of his journey was officiating at his niece’s wedding in a small village outside Cologne.
  • Returning to Claremont, California in September, 2013, Reverend Ross began creating again. His teaching ministry Always Be Growing, a subsidiary of Global Outreach Connections, Inc, encourages people to transform their lives through a deeper understanding of who we are.
  • In February of 2015, Ross moved to Palo Alto, California to take a position as Spiritual Director of the Conscious Living Center in MountainView.  Through a diligent, clear-eyed assessment and an abundance of creativity, Reverend Ross guided the CLC community into a new era and is now facilitating its conscious dissolution as a legal entity.
  • Concurrently, Ross has founded a new venture, Herestar. As it develops, Herestar will link the best elements of social media with our human need to bond in a new convergence of creativity, technology, and physicality. Herestar is all about Finding the Good.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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