“Defending the fatherless and the oppressed” (Psalm 10:18, NIV).
Click on the state to see our team.
Dan’s Favorite Bible Verse: I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. John 14:18
Dan’s Favorite Adoption Story: Each year Nightlight brings a group of kids from orphanages overseas. I wonder how these kids feel as they get off the plane in a strange country, and head off with a stranger (host family) for a couple weeks. I spoke with Luba, a young woman who came several years ago on one of these tours. She was later adopted by her host family. I asked her, “Were you scared to walk off with a woman you didn’t know?” She said, “No, because I knew she was my mom. I got off the plane and pointed at her.” There is a divine appointment set between these waiting children and their loving parents. We at Nightlight are privileged to be there when it happens.
Education: Daniel Nehrbass has a Ph.D. in Pastoral Counseling from Fuller Seminary and holds three masters degrees: in theology, divinity, and ministry. His B.A. is from U.C. Irvine. Prior to coming to Nightlight, Daniel was an ordained Baptist pastor, professor of biblical studies, and professional Christian counselor.
Responsibilities: As President, Dan plans for the future goals and direction of Nightlight, oversees the three Nightlight offices and manages our capable and experienced team. Dan also focuses on fundraising for the agency.
CA Executive Director
Rhonda’s Favorite Bible Verse: Whoever destroys a soul, it is considered as if he destroyed an entire world. And whoever saves a life, it is considered as if he saved an entire world. Yerushalmi Talmud 4:9
Rhonda’s Favorite Adoption Story: More of my family members are adopted then born into our family. I first became aware of adoption, when my brother came home on my 5th birthday, a month after his birth. Adoption was the way my husband and I chose to build our family through the adoption of five school aged children from Russia and one from Kyrgyzstan. Adoption is a way of life for me and I feel very blessed to help other families throughout their adoption journey.
Education: Rhonda Jarema earned her B.A. In psychology from University of Michigan and her M.A. from Pepperdine University.
Responsibilities: Manage the California office with specific responsibility for Kinship and UAA Adoption programs, Education Programs, Intercountry Home Study services, Home Study Abroad, and Hague Accreditation.
Domestic Program Manager
Beth’s Favorite Bible Verse: Matthew 25:40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”
Beth’s Favorite Adoption Story: While working in child welfare, there was a sibling set of 5 who had been separated and bounced through many foster homes. I remember the 2 youngest getting placed in a wonderful adoptive placement, and over the next couple of months, all of the siblings ended up together to be adopted as a family. The oldest that was still in care was officially adopted just before her 18th birthday with her younger siblings and then the family turned around and went through the process to adopt their older sibling that had aged out and gone to conservation corps. The family ended up reunified with a forever family.
Education: Beth has a B.A. in social work from Fresno Pacific University, and a M.A. in forensic psychology from Argosy. Beth is currently finishing a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology.
Responsibilities: Beth oversees our pregnancy counseling, domestic adoptive families, home study process, and social workers.
Foster Care and Adoption Social Worker
Amanda’s Favorite Bible Verse:
Amanda’s Favorite Adoption Story: I don’t have just one favorite adoption story! Each adoption that I have been involved in becomes my favorite and leaves an impression on my heart. My most impactful adoption story is my grandmothers. She was adopted domestically as an infant into a wonderfully loving and supportive family. Even though her adoption was closed and she never learned who her birthparents parents were, her parents always spoke positively and respectfully of her birthparent’s decision. Through my grandmother’s story, I grew a passion for adoption and pursued a career in the adoption field.
Education: Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, Biola University; Master of Social Work, California State University, Long Beach
Responsibilities: As an adoption social worker, I work with families in the domestic, international, and foster care programs in the areas of training, completion of home studies, and post adoption/post placement care.
Pregnancy Counselor and Domestic Home Study Coordinator
Cristiana’s Favorite Bible Verse: Psalms 139: 13-16
Cristiana’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story would have to be my dear friend’s story. He grew up in the Philippines and was born into an abusive home. He wondered the streets, as a young boy, until the police picked him up and put him in an orphanage. He stayed in that orphanage until at the age of fourteen, his social worker gave him the news that a family in the US wanted to adopt him. His mother came to this country to meet him for the first time. He says all he can remember is this lady who he had no idea what she was saying just embraced him in a bear hug and kept saying how much she loved him. Since that day, he has been living in the US and has come to know the Lord through his adopted family. This is one of my favorites because of the genuine love the Lord gave to his family for him; the call He placed on both my friend’s life and the lives of his family, as well as their response to that call.
Education: BS in Human Services at California State University, Fullerton
Responsibilities: I work with expectant mothers in making an adoption plan for their child as well as assisting families with their paperwork in our foster program.
Snowflakes® Placing Parent Coordinator
Leah’s Favorite Bible Verse: “And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:20
Leah’s Favorite Adoption Story: I knew I had a passion for adoption when I heard the story of my friend’s family. She and her brother were older and almost out of the house when her parents decided they wanted to adopt from China. They indicated that they were willing to accept a child with special needs, and much paperwork and prayer later, the matching stage began. When her mom got sent the profile of a little baby girl with a cleft palate and saw the picture of her, she burst into tears and knew that she was her daughter. Not too long afterward was the whole family on their way to China to pick up their little girl. It’s been beautiful to see this energetic and caring little one (who’s now in kindergarten) grow up in such a loving home and learn what it means to be adopted not only into her earthly family, but into God’s family as well.
Education: B.A. English, Biola University; currently working toward M.A. Clinical Psychology
Responsibilities: Managing Snowflakes® Placing Parent files and walking with them through the embryo adoption process
Snowflake Guidance Counselor
Hannah’s Favorite Bible Verse: Hebrews 12:28-29
Hannah’s Favorite Adoption Story: God has always given me a desire to work in the field of adoption. It is hard to pick a favorite adoption story as they are all special, but the one that impacted me the most was from within my own family. After my uncle and aunt read about the need for children to be adopted from China, they became passionate to expand their family to include one more little girl. After a long and emotional process, a sweet baby girl from China became a part of our huge Italian family and I have had the joy of watching her grow up. She has impacted our whole family as we got to experience the challenges and the beauties of the adoption process.
Education: B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Biblical Studies from Biola University; currently working toward M.A. Social Work
Responsibilities: managing special projects, completing Snowflakes Family Evaluations for adopting families, and assisting the Snowflakes team with the day to day function of the embryo program.
Snowflakes Adoption Parent Coordinator
Stephanie’s Favorite Adoption Story: Adoption is rather new to me. I do not have a favorite adoption story yet at this point.
Education: B.A. in Political Science from Cal State University Fullerton
Responsibilities: I help families complete their application paperwork and move them into the matching phase. I am the middle man that works in conjunction with our placing parent coordinator and our team lead to match families and move them to the contracts phase. I organize the families’ paperwork, conduct pre-matching phone consultations, and coordinate matching with our Snowflakes team.
Snowflakes Team Lead
Nicole’s Favorite Bible Verse: Zephaniah 3:17, “The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”
Nicole’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story would be that of a family at church. After having a few children biologically, they sought to internationally adopt a set of siblings. It was wonderful to see the siblings come together under one roof, loving each other and living life together in community. What a beautiful reminder that we have been adopted into the Lord’s family for eternity!
Education: Bachelor of Arts in Spanish from Biola University
Responsibilities: Manages the contracts and shipping phases of the Snowflakes program, mediates post-adoption communication between placing parents and adopting parents, and maintains Snowflakes database.
International Home Study Coordinator
Alice’s Favorite Bible Verse: My darling, everything about you is beautiful, and there is nothing at all wrong with you. Song of Songs 4:7 (NCV)
Alice’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story is of my friends who have adopted three of their six children. I admire their family and how their love continues to grow with each child who enters their family. After observing this family I have a picture of how vast God’s love is for His children and the rejoicing that happens when someone joins the family.
Education: Bachelors of Arts in Behavioral Science with an emphasis in Sociology from Concordia University Irvine
Responsibilities: My responsibilities are to assist families through the Home Study process.
International Program Coordinator
Natalie’s Favorite Bible Verse: Romans 15:13 “Now may God, the inspiration and fountain of hope, fill you to overflowing with uncontainable joy and perfect peace as you trust in him. And may the power of the Holy Spirit continually surround your life with his super-abundance until you radiate with hope!”
Natalie’s Favorite Adoption Story: It is too hard to pick just one adoption story, as each one is so unique and beautiful. However, one of my favorite things about adoption is being able to witness how far people will go for the sake of love and family!!!
Education: Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of California, Los Angeles
Responsibilities: Natalie helps coordinate the Colombia, Taiwan, and Haiti adoption programs and assists families throughout their international adoption process. She also helps to coordinate Nightlight’s Hosting programs.
Administrative Assistant/Inquiry Specialist
Robbin’s Favorite Bible Verse: Matthew 5:16 “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Robbin’s Favorite Adoption Story: First and foremost, that God is a Father to the fatherless…and puts the solitary into families. Ps. 68:5-6 and “the Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father” Romans 8:15. Not only did the Father give me new life but he brought a daddy into the life of my son, Joshua twenty-two years ago. Josh is the only male in my husband’s family to carry on the family name. God is so good and I am excited to be a small part of other families’ adoption journeys!!!
Education: Bachelor’s in Biblical Theology from Christian Life School of Theology
Responsibilities: Robbin provides administrative assistance as assigned and is in the process of transitioning to being responsible for reaching out to families who contact us looking for information regarding their adoption options. She will spend time listening to families’ dreams and desires about adoption, answer their initial questions and identify what program or waiting child may be the best fit to meet their family’s adoption needs.
Executive Director, Social Services Manager
Corie’s Favorite Bible Verse: Luke 6:31-36
Corie’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story starts with my own family. My sister and I were raised by our mom and step dad. In our pre-teen years, we were formally adopted by him. We were “chosen” children and he made sure we knew how much he loved us – and still does! As an adult, when I searched for my biological dad I learned he had changed his life and was giving back. He and his wife had become foster and adoptive parents to medically fragile children. They have adopted 5 children.
Education: MS in Social and Community Services. BS in Child and adolescent Studies with a minor in Human Services.
Responsibilities: I oversee our home study program for International, Domestic Infant and Foster Care Adoption. I also oversee our Foster Care and Domestic Infant adoption programs.
International Program Director
Renae’s Favorite Bible Verse: Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men. –Colossians 3:23
Renae’s Favorite Adoption Story: My husband and I adopted an 8 year old girl from Colombia in 2008. That same year we gave birth to a baby girl. In 2012 we adopted an 8 year old girl from LA County Foster Care. We gave birth to another girl that same year! Having “twins” nine years apart twice has been an incredible journey of blessings!
Education: MA in Communication with an emphasis in Interaction Studies and Organizational Behavior
Responsibilities: Serve families and staff working in the international programs out of the Colorado office: Bulgaria, Colombia, Haiti, Latvia, Romania, Taiwan, Ukraine.
Snowflakes Placing Parent(s) Inquiry Specialist | EAAC Clinic Liaison
Jen’s Favorite Bible Verse: “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.” Psalm 37:4, NLT
Jen’s Favorite Adoption Story: Adoption is an incredible blessing! It is an opportunity to give of ourselves and to live a life of intentionality, looking beyond our own concerns to the needs of another, providing love and support. Every adoption is a gift! It is a blessing, realized or unrealized, to both those who give and those who receive. When you get to see the love and true delight in a person’s eyes as they welcome a life into their small part of the universe, there is nothing like it! Their joy overflows, even the little ones, the babies, they know they are loved! Although I’m asked what my favorite adoption story is, and several come to mind, the truth is that there is nothing like your own.
Education: Jen has a BS in Organizational Management in Human Resources, with a minor in Psychology and has an MA in Curriculum and Instruction, specializing in Corporate Education. Yet despite her education and experience in both HR and Training, her most valued management experience was spent working in a communications company and serving on three continents. “Working with cultures, from all around the world, gave me a deeper understanding of people, their values, and how we all want to make a difference in life.”
Responsibilities: For families, and individuals, who want to give their remaining embryos a chance to be born, I am here to help anyway I can. Therefore, if you are one of those amazing people who is considering Embryo Donation, you probably have a number of questions that you would like answered, that is where I come in. I am here to answer your questions, put your mind at ease, and should you decide to move forward, provide you with the support you need as you make the best choices for you and your remaining embryos.
Snowflakes Inquiry Specialist | EAAC Education Coordinator
Deb’s Favorite Bible Verse: “I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” Galatians 2:21
Deb’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story comes from one of my best friends. His biological mother was unaware she was pregnant until she visited a hospital with severe stomach pain and realized she was in labor. She ended up abandoning him outside the hospital in a dumpster but was quickly found by hospital personnel. His story is certainly a miracle because the nurses that found him were positive that his mother would have aborted him had she found out he was pregnant. Instead he got the chance to live, and grew up in a big amazing family after he was adopted by two doctors that fell in love with him. He is one of the happiest people I know, and is currently working on becoming a chef and traveling all over the world with the biggest smile on his face.
Education: CNA, Front Range Community College; Arts & Photography.
Responsibilities: I have the pleasure of working with families as they consider our Snowflakes Embryo Adoption Program. Providing support and education as they begin to pursue this unique way of adding to their family. As the education coordinator for the Embryo Adoption Awareness Center I help coordinate and create educational webinars about embryo adoption.
Snowflakes Inquiry Specialist | EAAC Ob/Gyn Liaison
Paige’s Favorite Bible Verse: Isaiah 41:10
Paige’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story starts with my husband. He has two adopted brothers and has had several foster brother and sisters throughout his childhood. His sister and her husband are now starting to adopt and foster as well. As for his extended family, he has six adopted cousins. It’s is amazing to be a part of a family that opens up their homes to children in need and makes adoption a top priority in their lives.
Education: Bachelor of Science in Health Science with a minor in Chemistry from Grace College and Theological Seminary.
Responsibilities: As the Snowflakes Inquiry Specialist I connect with adoptive families considering this unique adoption choice and provide support as they navigate the application process. As the Agency Liaison for the Awareness Center, I speak with adoption professionals regularly, helping them learn more about Embryo Donation and Adoption.
Marketing & Marketing and Program Director |Snowflakes® Embryo Adoption Program | Embryo Adoption Awareness Center
Kimberly’s Favorite Bible Verse: Romans 5:6-8 “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Kimberly’s Favorite Adoption Story: While adoption has not occurred in my immediate family I do have several friends who have been adopted. It has been interesting to hear from them, as mature adults, regarding their adoption experience. Many of them were adopted during the era when adoption was ‘secretive’. Based on their personal experience the new emphasis on ‘open’ adoption is heartily supported by them. It is exciting to be a voice for children in all stages of their development, especially for the unborn. Since I also struggled with infertility for many years I am able to relate to many people who call into the Embryo Donation and Adoption Awareness Center searching for solutions. After years in corporate America it is my joy to work for an organization that directly and positively impacts the lives of children and adults.
Education: Kimberly Tyson has more than 30 years of marketing and leadership experience developing and deploying leading edge technology products and services for top-tier companies. An accomplished corporate marketer, her vision and expertise in business performance have brought goal-oriented success in the medical, education and general business sectors. She received her BA from Colorado State University in Business Administration-Marketing with a minor in Political Science.
Responsibilities: As the Director of the Nightlight Embryo Adoption Awareness Center she has developed educational training and videos, created Internet strategies to increase website traffic, launched a legal essay competition and established regular communications with Adoption Agencies and Fertility Clinics, Ob/Gyns, donors and adopters throughout the U.S. Kimberly is also responsible for leading the Snowflakes Embryo Adoption Program team and has doubled participation in the program since assuming responsibilities in 2015.
International Program Coordinator
Liana’s Favorite Bible Verse: Isaiah 40:31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Liana’s Favorite Adoption Story: I have a couple of favorite adoption stories. The first one would be my own. I was adopted from St. Petersburg, Russia at age 11. I feel truly blessed to have a family, a very wonderful loving family. In the orphanage I prayed to find my biological family and for them to take me back home but another family found me instead, my true family. My second favorite adoption story is the adoption of my first son. I ended up pregnant at age 18 and could not provide for a child. My best friend’s parents asked if I would consider them to be my baby’s parents. I decided that that would be the best option for my son and he would be well taken care of. Since I have known this family since I came to the U.S. we have maintained a great relationship and have a wonderful open adoption. I am so grateful that I still get to be a part of his life and he knows that I am his “birth mama” and that I love him.
Education: Business Administration student at Grand Canyon University
Responsibilities: Assist families in the international adoption process
Foster Adoption Program Manager
Meaghan’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story is that of my aunt, whose daughter was placed into a loving adoptive home when was a young woman. While my aunt knew it was the best thing for her daughter, she experienced a lot of heartache over not knowing who her daughter was or how she was doing over the years, since it was a closed adoption. Thirty years later, my aunt decided to find her daughter and by the grace of God, her daughter had decided at the exact same time in her life that she wanted to find and meet her birth mother. Since then, they have met and developed a wonderful relationship with each other and our extended family. My cousin was able to grow up in a happy, loving family who could provide for her more than my aunt could at the time. I love this story as it provides a beautiful example of sacrificial love and the love and workmanship of God in our lives. God truly does know the plans for us and make all things work together for good.
Education: Bachelors in Psychology from Georgetown University
Responsibilities: I work extensively with families who are interested in fostering children with the intention to adopt. I handle inquiries about the Fostering Love Adoption program, act as a liaison between the county and our families, and lead families as they go through the necessary steps in the program.
Social Worker/Pregnancy Counselor
Kelsey’s Favorite Bible Verse: 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so the Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Kelsey’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story would have to be about my little boy, Isaiah, whom I adopted from South Sudan in 2009. I was working in a medical clinic in South Sudan when he was brought to us with severe meningitis. Isaiah who was 13 months old at the time, was living on the streets with his 9 year old sister Rose, and they had lost both parents to AIDS only a month after Isaiah was born. Isaiah was HIV positive from birth and as a result of it going untreated for so long, he passed away shortly after I adopted him. When I first met Isaiah he was extremely unhappy, malnourished, and had never experienced joy or laughter. Isaiah, though only 1 year old, showed obvious indicators of neglect, distrust, anger, and an absence of love. I was privileged to spend 4 months with Isaiah and in my short time of loving and caring for him I saw God’s love transform this child from an angry, distrusting, and hurting little boy into a loving, playful and joyful little boy. It taught me about the power of love and how important it is for every child to know that they are loved, accepted, and worthy. Though this story has a tragic ending, it’s beautiful because Isaiah was able to know and experience love, self-worth, acceptance, and joy before he left this earth. It is now my objective, hope, and aspiration that every child will have a loving home and family and will know they are unconditionally loved because nothing is more transforming and powerful than LOVE.
Education: Masters of Social Work from the University of Louisville
Responsibilities: to counsel and educate expectant parents who are considering adoption, facilitate match meetings with expectant parents and prospective adoptive parents, facilitate match meetings with county workers and prospective foster parents, handle inquiries regarding Domestic Infant adoption program and Foster to Adopt program, lead and guide families as they go through Domestic Infant adoption or Fostering to adopt, conduct home studies, and maintain relationships with pregnancy centers and hospitals.
Home Study Coordinator
Emily’s Favorite Bible Verse: Rev. 7:9-10
Emily’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption stories are one generation apart. Both involve siblings adopted internationally. They are my cousins, and a niece and nephew. Their stories are ongoing, as are yours and mine – in which the Lord’s hand is at work.
Education: B.A., Bethel College, MN
Responsibilities: I work with families who are just beginning their adoption journey through the home study process.
Foster Care Advocate
Mary’s favorite adoption story: My favorite adoption story comes from my experiences at Royal Family Kids Camp. As a camp guide, I was blessed with two girls that I got to connect with closely over the course of the week-long camp. One of the girls was part of a sibling group of three who had been in foster care for several years. Just before camp the girl learned that all three siblings were going to be placed into an adoptive home. They had met the family and were so excited to be moving into this family’s home, and thankful that they were all being placed together. It was so awesome seeing how joyful it made her just knowing that she was wanted and loved.
Education: Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies from Colorado State University
Responsibilities: I work with families who are looking to foster children, generally with the intention to adopt. I act as a bridge between the county and the family, and provide support for them throughout the process.
Responsibilities: Megan ensures compliance with state laws and oversees the programs in the Florida office. She works with expectant parents by helping them make a hospital plan, connecting them to resources, facilitating match meetings between the expectant parents and prospective adoptive parents, and offering continual support. Megan also assists Florida families by conducting home studies and guiding them through the initial Domestic Program phases. She maintains relationships with community organizations, such as pregnancy centers, health clinics, and hospitals.
Responsibilities: Deb serves as the Domestic Program and Home Study Coordinator. She provides home study and post-adoption services to adoptive families and guides prospective adoptive parents through their domestic adoption journey.
Chelsea’s Favorite Bible Verse: Zephaniah 3:17: “The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in His love He will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.”
Chelsea’s Favorite Adoption Story: Less than a year after starting with Nightlight, I received a phone call from an expectant mom who wanted to make an adoption plan for her unborn child. On my way to meet with her for the first time, she called to notify me she was in labor and heading to the hospital. I am not typically in the delivery room, but this sweet expectant mom asked for my support and she was a trooper throughout her entire delivery. Each hospital experience is unique and special, but this one is especially dear to my heart as I watched this little one enter the world! It is an experience that is rare for me, and I have a special relationship with everyone involved with this precious adoption story!
Education: Chelsea holds a Master of Social Work from the University of Georgia, in addition to a B.S. in Family and Consumer Sciences with a major in Human Development and Family Science.
Responsibilities: Chelsea ensures compliance with state laws and oversees the programs in the Georgia office. She works with expectant parents by helping them make a hospital plan, connecting them to resources, facilitating match meetings between the expectant parents and prospective adoptive parents, and offering continual support. Chelsea also assists Georgia families by conducting home studies and guiding them through the initial Domestic Program phases. She maintains relationships with community organizations, such as pregnancy centers, health clinics, and hospitals.
Domestic Program Coordinator & Home Study Coordinator
Ashley’s Favorite Bible Verse: “Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from Him.”- Psalm 62:5”
Ashley’s Favorite Adoption Story: Although working in the adoption field is new to me, and there is currently no favorite stories that have impacted me, I have always valued fostering and adoption and the people that have pursued it with passion. Within Scripture, there are commands to care for the orphan, and this makes adoption central to my Christian faith. I do believe that in time my favorite adoption story will be my own.
Education: Bachelor of Social Work from Troy University (2013) and a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Alabama (2017).
Responsibilities: Ashley serves as the Domestic Program and Home Study Coordinator. She provides home study and post-adoption services to adoptive families and guides prospective adoptive parents through their domestic adoption journey.
KY Executive Director
Dana’s Favorite Bible Verse: Philippians 4:6-9
Dana’s Favorite Adoption Story: I began working at A Helping Hand Adoption Agency (which later became Nightlight Christian Adoptions) the first week of May, 2007. That very same week, in Guatemala, a precious little boy was born. Four months later, our Guatemalan caseworker walked through the office holding two files in the air, one in each hand, praying “Dear God, we lift the files of these two boys up to you. We know that you know where their families are and we pray, dear Lord, that You will send them our way. Do not keep them waiting!” I asked to see the files and immediately fell in love with the most beautiful baby boy I had ever seen. One month later, we began the process of adoption. One year later, this little boy became my son!
Education: Graduate of Eastern Kentucky University with two degrees. Her first degree was an Associate of Arts in Paralegal Studies obtained in the summer of 1990. She returned to college, as a wife and a mother, to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Child and Family Studies in May 2007.
Responsibilities: As Executive Director, Dana oversees the programs of the Kentucky office, supervises its employees and runs the day to day functioning of the office. Additionally, she manages the China program.
Snowflakes Family Evaluation Coordinator/Home Study Provider
Beth’s Favorite Bible Verse: Mark 10:13-16
Beth’s Favorite Adoption Story: I have a sister who is 9 months older than me and was adopted domestically as an infant. Since it was a closed adoption (as most were back then), we grew up with very little information about her birth parents. After nearly 40 years, my sister was contacted by her birth mother. Since then, with the support of our parents, she has formed a close relationship with her birth mother and her birth mother’s immediate and extended family. I was recently able to meet that family, who welcomed me into their home and lives with open arms, and who I now consider to be part of my family. The experience is very much a testament to the joys of open adoption!
Education: Bachelor of Science in Family Science, Brigham Young University
Responsibilities: Beth began her career in private residential child care before working for the state of Kentucky doing child protection for 5 years. She joined Nightlight Christian Adoptions (then A Helping Hand Adoption Agency) in 2004 as a Home Study Provider for families adopting internationally. She has also managed A Helping Hand’s domestic adoption program. She is now the Snowflakes Family Evaluation Coordinator for Nightlight.
Home Study Provider
Candice’s Favorite Bible Verse: Proverbs 3:5, “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.”
Candice’s Favorite Adoption Story: I don’t have one particular adoption story that is my favorite. Instead, I have favorite adoption moments. My overall favorite adoption moments are times when God works so clearly in the lives of all those involved with the adoption that no one can mistake the experience for anything other than a miracle from Him. This may come in the form of a match between a birth family and an adoptive family who have the exact same visions for their child (even having picked out the same name prior to the match). Or, it may happen when an adoptive family experiences a disappointing setback in their process, only to find out soon after that it was actually a blessing in disguise. I have witnessed moments like these when God has walked with adoptive families through difficulties and disappointments, only to bless them more than they could have ever imagined just a short time later. These types of experiences are my absolute favorite adoption moments.
Education: Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Kentucky, Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Kentucky, Certified Social Worker in the state of Kentucky
Responsibilities: Candice helps families prepare for adoption by providing home studies and post adoption services. Candice has enjoyed working in the adoption field since October of 2011, and feels blessed to be a part of Nightlight Christian Adoptions.
International Program Coordinator
Lisa’s Favorite Bible Verse: Joshua 3:5 “Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you.”
Lisa’s Favorite Adoption Story:I have been honored to witness and be a part of many adoption stories and they are all my favorite. The one I will share with you is a time when a birthmother gave birth to a beautiful baby boy and the adoptive couple was there at the hospital. But this young woman wanted to spend time with her baby. This was a difficult time for the adoptive couple because they were afraid that she would change her mind and decide to parent her son. I stayed with this birthmother during her stay at the hospital. We talked as she dressed her son and took so many pictures of him. She had to say hello and that she loved him. The adoptive couple gave her the space to do that. On the day she left the hospital, the birthmother said, “Lisa, I want to give him to you and leave.” When it was time for her to leave, she hugged and kissed her son and placed him in my arms, with tears running down her cheeks. Then she turned and sat in the wheelchair as the nurse wheeled her down the hallway. Her cries filled the maternity floor as she made the most difficult choice of her life. I was left standing in her hospital room holding this precious baby boy. As I held him, I prayed for him and the plans God had for him. I then took him to his adoptive parents. They stood holding one another, having heard the birthmother’s cries. I wiped the tears from my eyes and encouraged them to hold their son. Today this little boy is 4 years old. I continue to get pictures of birthdays and holidays when his adoptive family and his birth family spend time together. Moments now filled with smiles and laughter.
Education: Lisa is a graduate of Morehead State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work. Prior to joining Nightlight in 2012, Lisa worked with the Cabinet for Families and Children completing abuse/neglect investigations and working with foster children. She has worked with A Helping Hand Adoption Agency completing home studies for couples adopting from China. Upon joining the Nightlight team in 2012, Lisa worked as Domestic Program Coordinator/Birthparent Counselor/Home Study Provider. Lisa looks forward to working with more children and families as International Program Coordinator.
Responsibilities:Lisa helps coordinate the Albania, Uganda, Nicaragua, Panama, Honduras, and Malawi adoption programs and assists families throughout their international adoption process.
Adoption Advocate/International Adoption Assistant/Inquiry Specialist & Waiting Child Advocate
Stephanie’s Favorite Bible Verse: “Let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” John 3:18
Education: Stephanie has been with AHH/Nightlight since January of 2014, first working in the Domestic Program as the Birth Parent Liaison. She is a graduate of the University of Kentucky with a Bachelor’s Degree in Family Sciences with a Minor in Kinesiology and Health Promotion. In March 2015, Stephanie began working with the international programs in her current position as Adoption Advocate. Stephanie has a heart for orphans and feels honored to play a role in placing children in forever families.
Responsibilities: Stephanie helps coordinate the China, Hong Kong, Uganda, and Albania programs. She is also very passionate about her role as Waiting Child Advocate.
Social Services Assistant
Rita’s Favorite Bible Verse: 2 Timothy 2: 11-13
11 This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him.12 If we endure,
We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us.13 If we are faithless,
He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.
Rita’s Favorite Adoption Story: I’ve worked in adoption for 11 years and have heard many adoption stories. It amazes me to see and hear what the Lord has done in the lives of families and orphans. One story that is dear to my heart is about a young girl who had a very hard time adjusting to her adoptive family and to life in the USA. She was very difficult to parent, but after much love, patients and prayer, her life changed. Years later the mother called and ask if her daughter could come to our office and share her story with the staff. The girl is a very happy, bright and accomplished young woman now. She wanted to thank us for our part in helping her find a loving family. It is very exciting to see how the Lord works in the lives of so many precious children.
Education: Certified Nursing Assistant, and Insurance Billing
Responsibilities: Rita is responsible for post adoption reporting for several of the NCA programs. Rita and her husband David live in Lexington and love spending time with their grandson and three granddaughters.
Social Services Manager
Alicia’s Favorite Bible Verse:I lift up my eyes to the hills – where does my help come from? My help come from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1-2
Alicia joined the AHH/Nightlight team in January 2012. She received her Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Kentucky and is a certified social worker with the state of Kentucky. She has prior experience with child, adolescent, and family therapy, as well as providing social services to low income families through several community agencies. Alicia enjoys working with families and helping children find their forever home. Alicia lives with her husband and dogs in Lexington, Kentucky. She enjoys nature, running, reading, and going to the dog park.
Responsibilities: Alicia is responsible for the training, supervision and support of Social Services Staff in the KY office, including the Domestic Program Coordinator, the Home Study Coordinator, and the Post-Adoption Coordinator, and the Snowflake Family Evaluation Coordinator. She also reviews all home studies completed in KY, and works with out of state agencies on completing and reviewing home studies for mutual International Adoption clients from their states.
Domestic Program Coordinator
Margaret’s Favorite Bible Verse: “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace.” Numbers 6:24-26
Margaret’s Favorite Adoption Story: Every one is my favorite. From counseling with a birth mother/father to calling a family, who in many cases can only grow their family through adoption, to the match meeting to placement. Each woman I have had the opportunity to sit with, hear her story, and watch her make the courageous choice to place her child for adoption is one of the most beautiful pictures of love. Hearing the joy and excitement when I call a family letting them know they’ve been “matched” bring a joy unspeakable. Walking with both birth mother/father and prospective adoptive parents through the hospital; encouraging them and being a ear, is a privilege. Sitting with a birth mother as she grieves her selfless, love filled, courageous decision to place her child for adoption reminds me, over and over again of the fragile beauty of a God created soul. A bitter sweet time.
Education: Margaret joined the Love Basket team in November of 2011. She is a graduate of Liberty University with a BS in Psychology.
Responsibilities: Birth parent counselor; Prospective Adoptive Couple Advocate; Referral Source Outreach; Human Resources Liaison
Administrative Assistant & Home Study Coordinator
Becca’s Favorite Bible Verse: “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassion never fails. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” Lamentations 3:22-23
Becca’s Favorite Adoption Story: I would have to say that my favorite adoption story is one that happened before I started working at Nightlight. A family adopted a little boy from Hong Kong who has down syndrome and many other health concerns. They stepped out in faith to adopt this little boy and he is like a little ray of sunshine! They are still having many struggles with his health and do not know what the future holds for this little one but they remain faithful and continue on.
Education: Becca came here in June of 2016 with no degree. Once she began working here she instantly fell in love with adoption and hopes to earn a degree so she can have a bigger part in the process. She is currently working towards her bachelors in psychology with a focus in child and family psychology.
Responsibilities: Becca works in the China program helping families through their dossier paperwork and through their travel phase. She is also responsible for helping families with the beginning paperwork of their home study process. She handles other general office things such as answering phones, handling mail, etc.
Home Study Provider/Adoption Advocate
Lindsay’s Favorite Bible Verse: “…the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to act justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8
Lindsay’s Favorite Adoption Story:
Education: Lindsay is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University with a Bachelor of Social Work degree. She also completed the Public Child Welfare Certification Program. Lindsay is new to adoption, but has experience working in child protection, juvenile courts and in the public school system prior to joining the Nightlight team in 2017.
Responsibilities:Lindsay provides home study and post-adoption services to adoptive families. She also provides information and resources to inquiring prospective adoptive families.
MO Executive Director
Mariah’s Favorite Bible Verse: God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. (Ephesians 1:5, NLT 2007)
Mariah’s Favorite Adoption Story: The story of Moses in the Bible is the first account of open adoption and still inspires me.
Responsibilities: Championing motherhood, promoting family, protecting life in the womb, endorsing adoption and educating people about these values are the passions that have motivated Mariah to serve full-time at two non-profit, life-affirming organizations (a pregnancy resource center and an adoption agency) since 2001. Mariah considers it a welcomed privilege that her vocational calling is also her passion. Her service as a licensed professional counselor and adoption caseworker has provided the opportunity both to weep with those who are brokenhearted and rejoice with those who give and receive the priceless gift of a child. Bringing families together through adoption embodies honor, responsibility and joy.
Mariah accepted the position of Missouri Executive Director of Nightlight Christian Adoptions in October 2015. She currently resides in Ozark, Missouri with her husband, David. She and David believe their greatest legacy to be their three remarkable adult children and their families, who are employing their God-given strengths and talents in service to others.
Adoption Caseworker/Domestic Adoption Coordinator
Karie began working with Love Basket/Nightlight in August of 2016 serving as a Domestic Adoption Caseworker. She is the mother of 2 children. Karie enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling and spending time outdoors.
Education: Karie holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Work from Southeast Missouri State University.
Domestic Program Manager
Lara‘s Favorite Bible Verse: “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.”-Psalm 30:5
Lara’s Favorite Adoption Story: I have been involved with a number of domestic adoptions, however I will admit that the adoptions of my son and daughter stand out as two of my favorite. I feel like I am able to assist adoptive families by drawing from our personal adoption experiences, relationships with our children’s birth parents, and my own process of coming to accept my infertility. I understand that the adoption process can leave one feeling extremely vulnerable. I understand that there are many questions and concerns. It’s scary. But I have witnessed many, many successful and joyful outcomes. Every adoption is a blessing to me.
Education: Lara holds a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Lindenwood University and a Master of Arts in Counseling from Missouri Baptist University and maintains a Provisional License Professional Counselor status through the State of Missouri.
Responsibilities: Lara oversees the pregnancy counseling in Missouri, domestic adoptive families, home study process and social workers. In addition to her role of Domestic Program Manager Lara also serves as the Payroll Administrator for Nightlight.
Stephanie‘s Favorite Bible Verse: Isaiah 43:5
Stephanie’s Favorite Adoption Story: It is difficult to choose just one favorite adoption story. All adoption stories are unique and touching.
Education: Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing from Kansas State University
Responsibilities: Stephanie oversees all placement services for Nightlight’s India and Nigeria programs. Stephanie also oversees all international home studies within the state of Missouri.
RoNishia‘s Favorite Bible Verse: Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. – Corinthians 13:4-8
RoNishia’s Favorite Adoption Story: I can not choose just one adoption story as a favorite. Every physical adoption has been such a sweet, beautifully special blessing to be apart of. The Bible speaks about adoption in a spiritual sense. As Romans 8:15 so beautifully states, “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry,‘Abba, Father.’” God says we become part of His family in much the same way a family welcomes a new child — it is done out of love. As God adopts those who receive Christ into His spiritual family, it is my desire to continually see more and more children also adopted into their forever families.
Education: Nishia holds an Associate of Arts degree in Business Management, with an emphasis in Marketing and Public Relations and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Phoenix. She is also currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Marriage, Couples and Family Counseling through MidAmerica Nazarene University.
Responsibilities: Nishia is a pregnancy counselor and home study provider in the Kansas City metropolitan area. She serves birth parents and adoptive families throughout all stages of the adoption process.
Regina’s Favorite Bible Verses: “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” Matthew 7:7 and “I can do everything through him who gives me strength” Philippians 4:13.
Regina’s Favorite Adoption Story: I have had the privilege of being a part of many adoption stories, professionally and personally. Each story is unique and beautiful. The most beautiful story is how our Heavenly Father, Creator of the universe, adopted all of us as his sons and daughters.
Education: Regina holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Social Work from Missouri State University, and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.
Responsibilities: Regina is a birthparent counselor and home study provider in Southwest Missouri. She serves both birth parents and adoptive families throughout each stage of the adoption process.
Regina currently resides in Springfield, Missouri with her husband and two children. Regina enjoys spending time with her family, being outdoors, attending sporting events, and church functions.
Jordyn‘s Favorite Bible Verse: Matt. 11:28-30 – “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
Jordyn’s Favorite Adoption Story: I don’t have a favorite adoption story as it is difficult to choose just one. I am always looking forward to seeing more adoption stories unfold.
Education: Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology with an emphasis in Child Advocacy and Trauma Studies
Responsibilities: Assists Stephanie Miller in overseeing all placement services for Nightlight’s India and Nigeria programs.
Lisa’s Favorite Bible Story: Matthew 17:20 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
Lisa’s Favorite Adoption Story: Suubi’s story is Lisa’s favorite. You can read more about Suubi’s story here.
Education: She is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work and a graduate of the University of Kansas, with a Master’s Degree in Social Work.
Responsibilities: In her role as Vice President, Lisa helps in writing policies and maintaining Quality improvement within Nightlight. Lisa also directly manages the Albania, Hong Kong, Nicaragua, Panama, and Uganda programs.
OK Executive Director
Debbie has worked with hundreds of adoptive families in all phases of the adoption process since 1975 through both agency and private practice. She served as Coordinator of the Baptist Maternity Home, where she counseled many birth mothers and helped them through the difficult emotional ups and downs of the adoption experience. Debbie is an experienced therapist and counselor who relates to all her clients with empathetic concern and understanding.
Allison‘s Favorite Bible Verse: Psalm 68:5 “Father to the fatherless, defender of widows–this is God, whose dwelling is holy.”
Allison’s Favorite Adoption Story: I was adopted and never knew my biological father. My adoptive father passed away when I was 25 years old. My children’s father has chosen not to be in their lives. So I have learned and I teach them that our Father is in Heaven and He can love us like no other earthly father can. They understand that and believe that He is a better father for them than anyone.
Education: I am a graduate of Northeastern State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. Prior to working in the adoption field, I was a Child Welfare Investigator for Oklahoma Department of Human Services.
Responsibilities: I am privileged to be a part of Nightlight Christian Adoptions as an adoption caseworker in the Oklahoma office. I provide services to adoptive families as well as birth parents.
Loretta‘s Favorite Bible Verse: Matt. 5:13 – “Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be the salt-seasoning that brings out the God flavors of this earth”
Loretta’s Favorite Adoption Story: I love how God shows up for these girls and the families each and every time! I’m amazed at the opportunities to see beauty from ashes. It’s often not about how smart or educated we are but how willing we are to let God work through our lives. It’s exciting to see how each situation is both unique & difficult, however adoption always creates opportunities to see Gods Redemptive love at work.
Responsibilities: Works together with Executive Director and staff to support the daily workings of the office. Helping adoptive clients with paperwork processes & procedures. I also address inquiries that we receive from families who are interested in our adoption programs.
SC Executive Director
Laura’s Favorite Bible Verse: Philippians 1:6 And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.
Laura’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite story of adoption are actually two stories; those of the adoption of my daughters. The story continued when my younger daughter’s birth mother contacted us when my daughter was nine years old. She and her husband later a adopted a newborn through us. My older daughter is an R.N. and she and her husband have two children. She created a lifebook that she sent to her birth mother.
Education: M.P.H. and M.A. in Counseling. L.P.C./I
Responsibilities: Laura has served as the director of the South Carolina office for 20 years. She initiated and directs the ReNewed Hope Program, in which she assists families who can no longer parent their adopted children find new families for these children. Through ReNewed Hope and other programs Laura provides pre-and post-adoption education, support, and resources to families. Laura also maintains a counseling practice at the offices of Nightlight and coaches adoptive families from around the world through Skype. Laura has been actively involved in orphan care ministries and is the president of the South Carolina Association of Licensed Adoption Agencies.
Social Services Manager
Katie’s Favorite Bible Verse: Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27
Katie’s Favorite Adoption Story: I have been honored to have been a part of so many adoption journeys and it is hard to choose just one, but here is one of my early favorites. Two months after starting at Nightlight, I was working with a couple that had decided to place their unborn baby because they could not imagine bringing another child into their home. They knew that the two children that they were parenting needed all of them and the baby they were carrying did not deserve to get less attention than she deserved. I showed the couple profiles of waiting families and the birth mom chose a family based on two things: the adoptive father had served in the military and the adoptive mom wore pink cowboy boots on her wedding day! Prior to the baby’s birth, I was at a doctor’s appointment with the couple and the birth mom asked me if I knew the name that the adoptive family had chosen. I told her that I did and asked if she wanted to know the name. After she thought a moment, she confirmed that she did and when I told her, she burst into tears. I had no idea what was wrong, and immediately turned to the birth father who gave me a sign to wait a moment. The birth mom then turned to me and told me that she knew she had chosen the right adoptive family because the name that they had chosen for her daughter, for their daughter, was her grandmother’s name. When the two families met for the first time, it was as if they had known each other for years. The relationship between a birth family and an adoptive family is so special and theirs is a bond like no other.
Education: Bachelor of Social Work, Winthrop University
Responsibilities: Katie is responsible for the training, supervision and support of the Home Study Manager and the Domestic Program Coordinator as well as acting as the Home Study Coordinator for the GA office of Nightlight. Katie also works with families from the GA office as well as the SC office going through a domestic adoption in various stages of their journey.
Domestic Adoption Coordinator
Juliette’s Favorite Bible Verse: Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Juliette’s Favorite Adoption Story: Several years ago, I got the opportunity to witness the adoption process through my friend Becki. She and her husband longed for a child to complete their family and began their journey to adopt. Months later, they were matched with an expectant mom. I vividly remember the night Becki and her husband brought their son home and it has been amazing to see him grow up in such a loving home.
Education: BA in Psychology from Southern Wesleyan University (1998) and a MA in Counseling from Webster University (2001).
Responsibilities: My responsibilities include counseling expectant parents considering adoption, communicating with prospective adoptive parents regarding the domestic program and guiding each potential adoptive family through the adoption journey.
Home Study Coordinator
Katherine’s Favorite Bible Verse: Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born, I set you apart…”
Katherine’s Favorite Adoption Story: Every adoption is special to me because it reflects the heart of Christ and His willingness to adopt us into the family of believers. I have always felt called to adopt and my husband and I look forward to adding to our family via adoption in the near future.
Education: BA in Psychology from Clemson University and MA in Professional Counseling from Liberty University.
Responsibilities: Katherine serves as the home study coordinator where she gets the pleasure of assisting families throughout the home study process. She enjoys providing home study, post placement, and post adoption services to families. She also makes families feel at ease by giving meaningful support both pre and post adoption.
Home Study Provider
Amy’s Favorite Bible Verse: Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.”
Amy’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story would have to be my own. God changed our lives completely ten years ago when he brought our two sweet boys home. I am still in awe that I am able to be a mom. Our children are now 13 and 10 and have brought us more joy than we knew possible. It is because I have experienced the miracle of adoption that I am so thankful to work for Nightlight and witness other families’ lives be changed as ours was.
Education: Bachelors of Social Work, East Carolina University
Responsibilities: Amy is responsible for the training, supervision, and support of Nightlight’s home study providers in South Carolina. She is also responsible for coordinating all of the post placement services for our families. Amy enjoys working with families in the home study process, and providing education and support during their adoption journey.
Administrative Assistant & Inquiry Specialist
Kristen‘s Favorite Bible Verse: “and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12: 1b-2
Kristen’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story is that of Shabana Sparks who was adopted from India in the 1980s through our MO office. I came across her story a few years ago and have been inspired by her adoption story ever since. Her passion for adoption and her humble attitude towards God’s careful working of every detail in her story is so moving to me. I was thrilled to have recently had the opportunity of meeting her! Seeing her now, as an adult adoptee, I’ve been inspired to adopt internationally someday. What an awesome opportunity to share your love with a child, and in turn give them an opportunity to know Christ’s love! How exciting it will be to see them using their gifts and talents to further Christ’s kingdom because you were able to give them opportunities that they might have never had.
Education: Bachelors in Early Childhood Education, Bob Jones University
Responsibilities: Kristen has been with Nightlight since 2014 and is responsible for reaching out to families who contact us looking for information regarding their adoption options. She spends time listening to families’ dreams and desires about adoption, answers their initial questions and gives them guidance as to what program may be the best fit to meet their family’s adoption needs. She also manages our agency’s social media pages to promote Nightlight’s services and to advocate for waiting families and waiting children.
Ghana program worker
Carrie’s Favorite Adoption Story: My favorite adoption story is that of two older boys from my children’s orphanage. They wanted a family so badly. When I met them on my first trip to Ghana, the oldest asked me to pray for God to bring him a family. Over the next several years he would call or write letters as often as he could to ask if I was still praying, and when a family was coming for him. Then one day, a friend of a friend saw the boys’ info on social media. This mother had never even considered adoption, but knew that these were her sons. Seeing these boys finally come home at 13 & 15 years old, and watching them all fall in love as a family has been priceless.
Responsibilities: Coordinating adoptions from Ghana, West Africa.
Texas Executive Director, Licensed Child Placing Administrator
Education: Bachelor of science in family and consumer sciences with a major in child and family studies
Responsibilities: Erin is the new Executive Director of the Texas office. She oversees the adoption programs and the staff. Erin is gifted at counseling birthmothers and helping our families navigate the adoption process.
Director of Texas Foster Care Program & Waiting Children and Social Services Manager
Kelley‘s Favorite Bible Verse: “And they overcame by the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death” Revelations 12: 11
Kelley’s Favorite Adoption Story: I love being able to get out of the office to do home study interviews with adoptive families and to facilitate their parent training! I love hearing from families about why they are motivated to adopt a child, when they first learned about adoption and how they settled on the program/country they are adopting from. It is such a privilege to be able to chat with families about their understanding of attachment and the impact of trauma, grief and loss on a child. I enjoy answering their questions, telling them stories about other families to assist in their learning and opening their eyes to the reality of adopting a child trans-racially.
Education:BA in Social Work from Baylor University, MSW from Baylor University, Diploma in Child Welfare and Safeguarding from University of Huddersfield, England
Responsibilities: Advocate for Waiting Children by recruiting Texas families to adopt them, ensuring Agency Hague Compliance, reviewing home studies and post placements, and developing a Foster Care Program for Nightlight’s Texas office.
Child Placement Management Supervisor
Denise’s Favorite Bible Verse: “ ‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ ” Jeremiah 29:11
Denise’s Favorite Adoption Story: I have enjoyed the blessing of participating in many adoptions and they are truly an amazing experience. One of my favorite adoption stories was with a sibling set of 4 school-age children. With a desire to maintain this sibling group’s unity, 2 families stepped forward to offer them a forever family, creating one large family. The two families were relatives living in the same community and they joined together to welcome the sibling set into their family.
Education: Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Baylor University with a Minor in Child & Family Studies. Denise is also a Certified Child Life Specialist.
Responsibilities: Denise oversees domestic adoptions to ensures that we maintain compliance with the Minimum Standards set out for the State of Texas
Inquiry Specialist, Post Adoption Center Coordinator
Heather’s Favorite Bible Verse: Psalm 116:7 – Be at rest once again, O my soul, for the Lord has been good to you.
Heather’s Favorite Adoption Story: I worked for many years in our international programs and I am filled with joy at each child brought into a family. There was one case where we had difficulty with getting paperwork completed by a foreign country and had been praying for months for everything to come through and be approved for a family to adopt their child. When we finally got news of the approval, I remember running down the hallway toward my supervisor as we hugged, cried, and rejoiced that this family would be bringing their child home. Even as agency staff, we carry each of these children and families heavy on our hearts and thank God for each family that He creates.
Education: Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Baylor University
Responsibilities: I focus on educating the community on adoption and training adoptive families before they bring a child into their home and after on the impacts of trauma on children. This training includes creative ways to bring connection between the parent and child through many parenting methods.
Home Study Coordinator
Sarah’s Favorite Bible Verse: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV
Sarah’s Favorite Adoption Story: Recently, I did a post-adoption home visit. The family adopted a child who has Down’s syndrome from China. The adoptive mother shared her experience regarding the trip to China. She was surprised by the looks her son received from the community. It was not the welcoming type, to say the least. Due to the strong stigma of mental health and developmental issues in the culture, her son was not well accepted. Thankfully, it was a totally different experience when they came back to America. The community here welcomes him with so much kindness and love. This family adores their son. What a day and night experience! I felt so honored to witness that.
Education: Sarah came to the United States as an international student from Hong Kong, China in 1991. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Biola University in La Mirada, California. After working for a year as a senior case worker in Los Angeles, Sarah then pursued her Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology at Trinity International University in Deerfield, Illinois. Sarah returned to Los Angeles after graduation and has been working with underserved children and adults with various mental health issues for the past 15 years. Sarah obtained her Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist licensure in 2008 and is passionate about integrating prayer and biblical truth in counseling. Sarah and her husband moved to Waco in September, 2016.
Responsibilities: She joined the Generations team as a Home Study Manager in March 2017. She is grateful and very excited to have the opportunity to serve God through adoption and orphan care.
Home Study Provider
Kelly helps prepare families for adoption by completing their home study, and providing post adoption reports. She also helps with birthmother counseling.
Home Study Provider
Lauren helps prepare families for adoption by completing their home study, and providing post adoption reports. She also helps with birthmother counseling.
Home Study Provider
Michelle helps prepare families for adoption by completing their home study, and providing post adoption reports. She also helps with birthmother counseling.
Home study Provider
Laura’s Favorite Bible Verse: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
Laura helps prepare families for adoption by completing their home study and providing post adoption reports.
Pregnancy Counselor and Home Study Provider
Caidon’s Favorite Bible Verse: Jeremiah 17:7-8 “But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”
Caidon’s Favorite Adoption Story: My husband and I are very passionate about adoption. It has played a large part in both of our families. One of my favorite adoption experiences is in my own family. My cousin, Megan, was born in China, but was adopted internationally by her forever family at age 7. Watching Megan blossom and grow in my family has been a beautiful experience to be a part of and see, and has continued to grow my love and passion for adoption.
Education: Bachelor’s degree in Social Work, with a minor in Cross Cultural Studies (2013) from Howard Payne University and a Master’s degree in Social Work (2016) from Baylor University. Caidon obtained her license and is a Licensed Master Social Worker in the State of Texas.
Responsibilities: As a Pregnancy Counselor, I counsel and educate expectant parents who are considering adoption. I assist them throughout their adoption journey by helping them make a hospital plan, connect them to resources, facilitate match meetings between the expectant parents and prospective adoptive parents, and offer continual support. Part of my role as a Pregnancy Counselor is that I maintain relationships with pregnancy centers and hospitals. I also assist Texas families by conducting Home Studies, Updates and Post-Placement visits.