The Sylvia Richards Memorial Lectures series was conceived as a celebration of the life of Dr. Sylvia Richards, a licensed Psychologist, who served as the Commissioned Minister of Counseling and Community Life at First Congregational Church of Houston (FCC).
This series presents a yearly speaker at FCC who is an established authority in the areas of counseling, community building, spirituality, or social justice. Speakers are selected by the Memorial Lectures Committee. The Committee’s goal is to identify regional, national, or international thought leaders who could deliver an impactful event for a knowledgeable and progressive audience. Once speakers are chosen, the Committee works with them to develop a format and topic that would appropriately honor Dr. Richards while appealing to our target audience. We encourage our speakers to be receptive to interaction with the audience – either during the presentation or at a reception following.
The venue for the lectures is the approx. 350-seat Meeting House on the First Congregational Church campus. The pew seating is in a “U” shape based on the traditional Congregational meeting houses of New England. The design and size of the room brings the audience close to any speaker to create a more intimate feeling than a lecture hall.
This series gives voice to the many passions of Dr. Richards, whose life was dedicated to healing: the self, the spirit, the community and the society. It is funded by donations from her friends, family, former colleagues, and those who share her vision and wish to help continue her legacy.
About Dr. Sylvia Richards
A native Houstonian, Sylvia received her BA and MA degrees from University of Houston, and her Ph.D. from Union Graduate School. Her lengthy career included private practice, school crisis counseling, ethics workshops for therapists, doctoral advising, building small group communities, and leading adoptive parenting groups. At FCC she conducted workshops, Christian education classes and worship services aimed an increasing spirituality and connection.
Dr. Sylvia Richards was a practicing psychotherapist who also served as the Commissioned Minister of Counseling and Community Life at First Congregational Church of Houston. Sylvia headed up the FCC Counseling Center that provided confidential counseling on a sliding scale. She also conducted workshops, Christian education classes and worship services aimed at increasing the spirituality and connection of the FCC community.