MICHAEL VANHOOK- Founder & Executive Director
Michael has worn many hats over the course of his life—educator, businessman, pastor, and advocate. His personal journey has been a passionate pursuit to discover how his life, transformed by God’s grace, can make a difference in the lives of others.
Any success that he has achieved, he attributes to the faithful support of family and friends. Michael holds masters’ degrees from Northern Kentucky University and Asbury Seminary. He is also the Executive Director of the MSV Educational Network, an English language and cultural institute in Londrina, Brazil.
Michael’s improbable journey with Hispaniola has transformed his life as much as theirs—“I can’t explain why or how, but their love has profoundly changed me.” The spark was lit when he made a trip to Haiti as an 18-year-old high school senior. His deep, abiding love for the Haitian people motivated him to found the International Strategic Alliances as a response to their stated dreams and needs. He considers the greatest compliment that he has ever received, was when a Haitian man told him, “I consider you a Haitian because you treat us as equals.”
Michael and his wife Luciana live in Londrina, Brasil.
BRUNO CHERENFANT- Honorary Director & Advisor
Bruno Cherenfant grew up in extreme abject poverty being raised by a single mother in the interior city of Pignon. A compassionate church and pastor took him under their care and helped him start school at a very late age for elementary children.
Sensing God's call to become a pastor, Bruno enrolled in a seminary near Cap-Haitien. He often went without food in order to pay for tuition and books. In what can only be described as a "divine appointment", Bruno and Mike were connected one impromptu evening at the Cap-Haitien airport. This encounter launched a lasting friendship and ministry.
In 2007, Bruno felt called to start a church in the poorest neighborhood of Cap-Haitien, Madeline, where no church or school existed. On an overcast March morning, seven women and thirteen children gathered on a plot of ground bringing their hopes and dreams, along with their own chairs. As they stood under the morning sky singing and praying, the clouds burst open with a drenching rain, so they fled for their homes. Undaunted, the next day, they returned with a few boards, scraps of sheet metal, and prayers of petition seeking God’s blessing on this new beginning. From this humble beginning, Faith Church has steadily grown into a vibrant worshipping church and a source of life and hope to a desperate community.
Pastor Bruno and his wife, Mimose, have a nine-year-old daughter, Brunevca.
GREGG SHAFFER- Director
Gregg Shaffer is an international leader since 1975 having served with Campus Crusade for Christ and Athletes in Action in Micronesia, the Philippines, and on university campuses. Gregg has been a chaplain to college and professional sports teams and developed one of the first Sports Ministry degree programs for undergraduates at Briercrest Christian College.
Gregg and Michael first met in Bowling Green Ohio when Gregg was a sociology and engineering student at the University of Toledo and Michael was still in high school. Gregg served as an important mentor during Michael’s formative years. Later, it was Gregg’s invitation that lured him back to Haiti which resulted in the founding of the International Strategic Alliances.
Gregg and his wife Diane have three daughters and live in Rockville, Maryland.
DAVID MICHEL- Director
“Mover and shaker” aptly describes David Michel. An entrepreneur by passion, David has been an engineer, businessman, developer, educator, journalist, broadcaster, and diplomat. His personal drive is to make a lasting difference in the lives of others.
David is married and father of two teen-aged daughters. He splits his time between Fort-Liberte, Haiti and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He has earned a Masters degree in Business Administration from Everest University in Florida, a Bachelor degree in Civil Engineering from the Faculty of Applied Sciences in Haiti, and other certifications in Mass Media and Communications from the Haitian Center for Journalists. David is fluent in several languages.
David’s accomplishments are many and varied. He is the Executive Director of BOYO Cultural Institute and HELP Indeed, educational and humanitarian projects in Haiti. David and his brother created the most prominent Haitian radio station in the Hispaniola border area. He co-founded the Haitian Press Federation, of which he was the first president. Later, David founded a construction and multi-service business that developed the electrification of the city of Fort-Liberte and national festivities.
DAVID CHEEKS- Director
David Cheeks is presently serving as a church planting missionary to villages in South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia, and Malawi. He also works with the College of Prayer in unpublished missions to the Middle East in order to encourage pastors and leaders to experience reviving prayer. David is on the Board of Directors of Jwalang School in Johannesburg, a school that serves to protect, feed, and educate preschool children in the context of the extreme poverty of the squatter camps.
David resides in Florence, Kentucky with his wife Melissa. They have three married adult sons and one granddaughter. David received his undergraduate degree from Morehead State University in 1976 and his Master of Divinity from Asbury Theological Seminary in 1981. He has served local churches in southern Indiana, western Missouri, and Kentucky, including campus ministry at Morehead State.
Keryl Wortman- Secretary
My name is Keryl Wortman. I reside in Billings, Montana, but I was born and raised in the beautiful Gallatin range outside of Bozeman. After my military service, I settled on the East coast and raised a family. I am blissfully happy to be called Mom, Mom-in-Law, and YahYah, as my babies call me. I returned to my home state in 2012 to resume my dream of higher education and graduated in 2017 from Montana State University with my Bachelor’s in Parasitology and minor in Risk Management.
My Lord has truly blessed me with the love of my family and good friends. He taught me the joy of serving others, and through His direction and guidance, brought me to my beloved Haiti and ultimately to my very dear friends. Their friendship, mentorship and passion for Christ, has profoundly impacted my life, and I am eternally thankful to serve beside them and call them my family. I am prayerfully excited for my continuing journey in faith, and welcome the path He has chosen for me, whatever the path may be.
NORTH AMERICA . ISA . PO Box 691 . West Chester, OH 45071 USA I 513.779.4393 I firstname.lastname@example.org