Tiqvah Puzzle Piece by Lesley Doan
There are a lot of pieces to the Tiqvah puzzle. One of those pieces is our Board of Directors. Tiqvah is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) and the board of directors is the governing body of a nonprofit. Our board of directors meet formally once a month. During board meetings different committees take turns reporting out. The board works with the Executive Director to make Tiqvah the place God has intended it to be.
Over the past few years Tiqvah has made some changes and so has the board of directors. For the past three years the board’s president has been Julie Gonzalez. Julie has invested countless hours and has poured so much into the organization. Julie has helped in supporting the hiring of a new Executive Director and has ensured that all policies and procedures were in place as Tiqvah grew. With her exit as president I felt it was important allow her to share some words with us about her experience with Tiqvah:
In Spring of 2015 I first began serving at Tiqvah serving meals at dinnertime. Around this time God was prompting me to take classes in non-profit fund development. I began to take those classes December 2016 for 6 months to receive a professional certificate in it. Around the time I started taking the classes I had also begun to volunteer weekly at Tiqvah in one of the classrooms. I loved being around the kids and saw on a weekly basis how important this ministry is. As I began learning more on fund development for non profits through my classes I began to share the things I was learning with the Founder/Executive Director and shortly after my classes started she invited me to join the Board. I didn’t have to think and pray too long on this because already in my heart God had given me a passion to serve the students at Tiqvah in whatever ways I could. Back when I signed up for the classes I was taking I didn’t know why I was taking them, but the moment I was asked on to the Board I knew exactly why. Joining the Board of Directors was so exciting to me because meant I could help Tiqvah at with the bigger picture of who we are as a ministry as well as help be part of setting and living out the vision of where God wants to take it.
One of the most amazing things I’ve seen in the almost 3 years of serving on the Board of Directors is how God is the one driving this ministry and how he always provides, sometimes in miraculous ways and sometimes in ordinary ways. My faith has increased tremendously as we have followed his lead. From the way God provided an awesome new Executive Director in the perfect timing when our Founder stepped into a new and different role, to providing financially when a need was there and we didn’t know how to meet it, to bringing on several new Board members the past two years who possessed the exact skills needed to drive the mission and vision of Tiqvah forward, and many other ways. Another thing I’ve seen is how much of God’s love the staff at Tiqvah pours out on to the students and how they are willing to go the extra mile for any need the families have. All you need to do is spend a few hours onsite or talk to several of the parents and you can see how much love is present for not just the students but for their entire family too. It’s also been very beautiful to watch how God has been bringing each year more people to join in the mission in a variety of ways simply because they have heard the call and followed through in obedience. From the weekly volunteers who are very committed, to the volunteers who come and serve meals on a regular basis, to the drivers who help transport the kids home safely, to the volunteers who run the clothing boutiques and pack snack bags, and on and on.
It’s been such an honor to serve this incredible ministry as a Board member. Serving in a variety of ways at Tiqvah has been as big if not bigger blessing in my life as it may be to others that I have been serving there. I encourage you to pray and ask God, is there a way you may be calling me to serve for the first time or in a new way at Tiqvah, and if there is, take the step. You won’t regret it!
Julie has played a huge role at Tiqvah and this past year the board of directors has grown from three members to eight! Our current board officers and members are:
Darci Knight (President), Jo Wheeler (Vice President), Christina Schiltz (Secretary), Josh Weber (Treasurer), Julie Gonzalez (Member), Matt Shamblen (Member), Yago Gonzalez (Member), and Rebecca Wolfe (Member)
Our new president, Darci Knight, joined Tiqvah’s board about a year and a half ago because she feels the hope we give our students is very important. She is passionate about helping improve the lives of the next generation. Over the past year Darci has seen God bring a bigger audience and awareness of Tiqvah to the community and that excites her. When asked what she is looking forward to most about being our new president she said “as Tiqvah grows I’m ready to be able to take on the bigger view, with a bigger approach while maintaining the quality of care and support we give our Tiqvah students.”
All of our board members are invested in Tiqvah. They spend time learning about the organization, they help with our fundraising events, some volunteer during programing, they share with their friends and family about Tiqvah, they donate and/or sponsor Tiqvah students and events, and they pray for everyone at Tiqvah. Their love and support is very much appreciated and critical as we work to carry out the mission and vision of Tiqvah. Our board of directors are a very important piece to our Tiqvah puzzle!