Mayor Michael A. Nutter issued the following statement on the death of the Rev. Dr. Marguerite E. Handy, Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Faith-Based Initiatives:
“Reverend Marguerite Handy was a woman of faith, a strong advocate for the vulnerable, a true friend to everyone she knew, and a beautiful person. Rev. Handy brought warmth and eternal optimism to the Mayor’s Office and the Greater Philadelphia clergy community. She cared deeply about government’s role in improving the lives of people all across the city, and she was dedicated to ensuring all communities of faith had access to city government.
Rev. Handy was a friend and advisor to me and individuals in my Administration, and we’re all very saddened at her passing.”
Rev. Handy began her public service with city government in 2004. After years in the healthcare industry with Keystone Mercy Health Plan, Rev. Handy felt the calling for religious pastoral care and then public service. A minister of Mount Pisgah AME Church, she was consistently recognized by the Greater Philadelphia community as being a dedicated community servant.
She was a leader during the Peaceful Surrender initiative, which encouraged individuals with outstanding warrants to take responsibility for their actions and turn themselves in to their religious leaders. She also coordinated with Philadelphia clergy to persuade cooperation and implement HIV testing and prevention education by congregations throughout the city. Reve. Handy provided vision, innovation and pastoral care while tackling some of the most difficult issues of city faces.
“Rev. Handy deeply loved working in the AME church and especially with her home congregation. She also was committed to her family especially her children Pamela, Christopher, Kenneth and Douglas. We’re all very saddened by her passing, but we know her legacy will continue to affect the lives of the communities she selflessly and tirelessly served,” said Mayor Nutter.