Jeff Davis, Chair
Jeff Davis graduated from New Mexico State University as an electrical engineer and received a Master's Degree in electrical engineering from MIT. He worked for the federal government in Virginia as a high tech program manager before moving to Silicon Valley in 1985. He continued working as a program manager for a major defense contractor and then a commercial start up company before joining CityTeam Ministries as a development officer where he developed grant writing as a major new revenue stream.
Jeff served on CityTeam's Board of Trustees from 1988 to 2003 and joined the Advent Board of Directors in 2012. He has taught a Bible study in the CityTeam Men's Recovery Program for 11 years and has a heart for all who struggle with addiction. Jeff is enthusiastic about using his grant writing skills to assist Advent in identifying additional funding opportunities. He and his wife Becky were active at Saratoga Federated Church where Jeff served as President of the Council of Elders for 2 years. They have both served in leadership of Bible Study Fellowship for over 20 years.
Sherri Stuart, Vice Chair
Sherri Stuart has served on Advent's board since 1995. She runs her own one-woman grant writing company and has written grants for many local not-for-profits.
Sherri has donated untold amounts of labor and expertise to help Advent secure hundreds of thousands of dollars in funding and continues to be a staple of the fundraising that goes on at the agency.
She has shared her wisdom through being a mentor for troubled kids in her home town. She also serves as a key volunteer for St. Joseph's food program in Gilroy, and is a member of Gilroy Arts Alliance. Sherri's dedication and singular value to her community was recognized through her being named the 2007 Woman of the Year for the City of Gilroy.
Bob Connors, Treasurer
Bob has served as CFO of several high technology companies in the Bay Area, both public and private. He has an MBA in Finance and Accounting from Washington University in St. Louis, and a BA in Physics and Math from Occidental College in Los Angeles.
He serves on the finance and audit committee at City Team Ministries and is Chair of the Local Outreach team at Saratoga Federated Church. He is part of the Village Forum in Saratoga.
Bob became acquainted with Advent through presentations by Mark Miller at his church and through working on the Local Outreach team. He says that when he visits Advent facilities and hears the testimony of students there, "I'm floored with how, through the work of the dedicated staff and the Holy Spirit, these students are in the process of changing their lives for the better-- in miraculous ways."
Gary Wimp, Secretary
Gary Wimp was introduced to Advent at one of the annual BBQ events and was “inspired by the testimonies” from current teen participants and the “positive impact that Advent has had on their lives”.
Gary is a commercial realtor with California Partners, Inc. in Mountain View, CA and joined the Advent board in 2012. He graduated from Regis University in Denver, Colorado and received his Masters Degree in Human Relations from Golden Gate University in San Francisco. He is an elder in his church, the Highway Community in Mountain View, where he served for two years as Chairman of the Board. Gary lives in Los Altos, CA with his wife, Sheila, and they have a son, Jason, who is in college.
Robert Leonard, Board Member
Bob was raised in Indianapolis and graduated from Purdue University as a mechanical engineer. After college, he served in the Navy for two years. He then began working for Trane Co. in San Francisco, ending up managing the San Jose office. He is one of the founding members of Advent and has been on Advent's Board of Directors since 1985 serving in many areas - Finance, Executive Committee and Golf Committee.
Bob has been active at Saratoga Federated Church for over 40 years. He and his wife Joan have three sons and seven grandchildren.
Rebekah Laffoon, Board Member
Rebekah Laffoon is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist whose passion is to help individuals, couples and families through skillful guidance and compassionate care. She received her Bachelors degree in Psychology from the University of California, Berkeley and received her Masters degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Western Seminary. Her journey with Advent Group Ministries began when she worked at Advent as a clinical trainee and later as an associate intern, providing psychotherapy to chemically dependent adolescents and their families, as well as seeing clients through Advent's counseling center. Rebekah has also provided counseling services to the community at Monta Vista High School (Cupertino) and Christian Counseling Center (San Jose). In addition, she brings to the Board her years of experience working in the Development department at CityTeam Ministries as an executive assistant and grant writer.
Rebekah and her husband Andrew attend WestGate Church with their two daughters, and they serve in the Life Groups Ministry.
Sheyna Heard, Board Member
Sheyna Heard is the Senior Pastor of Rohi Christian Church. She is a motivational speaker, entrepreneur, preacher, teacher, mother and avid business woman who has been involved in Christian ministry since 1995. She is a founding member of Rohi Christian Church and was ordained as a minister in August 2004. She and her husband also co-founded the San Jose Chapter of Midnight Basketball which served over 25,000 at-risk youth from 1995-2012. Sheyna has helped raise over $3 million in grants and private donations for youth programs.
Behind her compassionate concern and spiritual vigor is a story of tragedy and triumph, poverty and prosperity. Sheyna has overcome turbulent early years and has now dedicated her life to helping others do the same by transforming their circumstances to discover God's unique promise of divine destiny for their lives. On October 5, 2008 Sheyna's husband, Pastor Jeffery Heard, was called home to be with the Lord. It was at this moment the Lord called Sheyna to fill the role of Senior Pastor.
A native of St Louis, Missouri, she receive a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Northwestern University and she hold a Master's of Business Administration from California State University, Dominguez Hills. She received her Master of Divinity from The King's Seminary in May 2015.
Now a single mother of two dynamic boys, Jeffery S. Heard II, and Joshua Stanly Heard, Pastor Sheyna believes her first ministry is to her family and has served as a basketball and baseball coach for her son's sports teams.
Sheyna is best known, not for the things above, but for her undying love for the Lord. She seeks to spend time alone with God each day but admits that it is often a challenge with a busy schedule and young children. Her hobbies include spending time with her family, reading, exercising, and watching her boys play baseball.
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