Past, Present, Future


Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 12.10.21

Reflections of board associates

Our community owes much of its success to its compassionate, wise, and enthusiastic embrace of people, businesses, food, technology. arts and ideas from all over the globe. Let's work together to welcome the new visible symbol of human behavior at its best is a beautiful reminder for each one of us—The Tree of Compassion.

—Jim Campbell

The Tree of Compassion is the Greenville symbol that reflects the shared community vision of the founding citizens. It projects the future commitment to enlarge this shared common identity and the promotion of justice, fairness, and understanding. This public tribute to a shared community spirit demonstrates our concerns for the quest for quality of life and the wellbeing of humanity. 

–Paul Ellis

Throughout our lives, we are inspired by the better by someone—our parents, grandparents, and teachers, among others. The Tree of Compassion is intended to be a symbol of commitment to all of our futures— the compassionate care that the great procession of people bring to successive generations. The goal of the Tree of Compassion is to be an inspiring place to visit—a place to consider the future for ourselves and for others—and to consider the gifts we have all received. from those who have gone before.

—Sharon Campbell

The Tree of Compassion is, for me, first an ode to Gwen Goad, her spirit, her altruism, and her madness! Who else would have come up with the idea?! A woman who inspires us to bring forth our munificence with the symbol, the Tree of Compassion, the benevolence of the community of the city of Greenville, South Carolina.

—Heide Craig

Doc - Jun 23 2020 - 18-14 - p1.jpg

Reflections of former students

Miss Gwen made a huge difference in my life when I was a child, and she continues to inspire me and my son today. I’m looking to connect with other former students to share memories and help others reconnect with her. I’m also gathering support for her latest project, the Tree of compassion. Miss Gwen, thank you for all the ways you have inspired me to live my life in service to others. Thank you for helping me pass on that inspiration to my son, Ethan.

—Reverend Kara Joy Stewart

I thank God for bringing Miss Gwen into my life when I was four years old! It was Miss Gwen‘s loving gaze that has been so deeply imprinted into my psyche/soul. I felt seen… heard… cherished… loved well. Miss Gwen delighted in me, and that has made ALL THE DIFFERENCE in my life. I was a flower girl in her wedding. She was my teacher, Brownie and Girl Scout leader who taught me to be a citizen of the world. I owe much of who I am and my calling to ministry to Miss Gwen. I am honored and delighted to support the Tree of Compassion project in my hometown of Greenville, South Carolina.

—Reverend Amy Lehr Camp

Some of my earliest memories are with Miss Gwen. She was my educator, Brownie and Girl Scout leader, and the first person to show me how being a true humanitarian positively affects our world as a whole. Miss Gwen‘s influence led me to be an educator who works daily to impact children’s lives the way she impacted mine. I was a flower girl in her wedding, a day I will never forget. I love my Miss Gwen and can never thank her enough for the positive influence she’s made in my life.

—Lindsey Harris Shuford

Miss Gwen's life in Greenville personifies compassion's ability to affect positive change across entire communities. Imagine her arriving in South Carolina in 1972! I am so grateful to have known Miss Gwen since I was three years old, and I count her as a mentor and architect of my worldview—from her encouragement of my art, music, and writing to my passion for ending global poverty and preventable diseases. All of those parts of me I owe to Miss Gwen. I am her Kristi and she is my Gwen, forever. 

—Kristi York Wooten

Join the Friends of Compassion today!