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Leadership

Meet the team who are working to make our vision of free, full lives for children affected by conflict and oppression a reality.

Operations Team USA Board

Operations Team

Steve Gumaer

Steve Gumaer

Founder and President

Steve loves life. He likes to run, climb, paddle, and read. He loves people and for the past 26 years, that passion has resulted in a team dedicated to bringing freedom and fullness to the children affected by conflict and oppression. When Steve is not on the road speaking at meetings, he can be found with his team or behind the keyboard contributing to the conversations required to achieve his ambitious goals. He and his wife Oddny work closely to help build a connected community who aspire to loving God with a whole heart, and proving that love on the battlefield where our youngest “neighbors" are found.

Jenn Tendero

Jenn Tendero

VP of Strategic Engagement

Jennifer and her husband Tony live with their six children and two dogs in a farmhouse on five acres in Michigan, which adds up to a very full life. Engaging friends in taking Jesus seriously when he told us to love others like we love ourselves is what drives her; living that out is what challenges her. Jenn loves to swim in Lake Michigan in summer, ski through the woods in winter, and cook for whoever is in her kitchen.

Claire Gibbons

Claire Gibbons

VP of Organizational Development

Claire Gibbons and her husband Doug (who leads program delivery in South East Asia) and their family have worked with refugees and internally displaced communities with Partners Relief & Development since 2009. Originally from New Zealand but now based in Northern Thailand, Claire spent time working in Government and Corporate IT project delivery before joining Partners as staff. She loves improving systems, spreadsheets, justice and strategic planning but her passion is for communities that have been impacted by war and oppression to be shown God’s love and walking alongside them in their times of great crisis and to help them have the skills and support they need to rebuild the lives with dignity.

Maureen Beighey

Maureen Beighey

VP of Finance

Maureen lives in Colorado and enjoys hiking, biking and time spent with her grandkids. Maureen visited Partners operation in Thailand in 2006. After being invited to join the Board of Directors a few months later she accepted the position of secretary/treasurer. In 2008, Partners opened their first office in California and Maureen helped organize financial and administrative processes. Over the next 10 years, Maureen held various titles and roles in the organization with financial management a central activity. She took a hiatus for 2 years to spend time with her grandchildren and returned in 2020 to continue working with Partners as the VP of Finance. Along with the time she has invested in Partners, Maureen has degrees in accounting and information technology making her uniquely qualified as a leader and member of Partners Executive Team.

USA Board

Chris Jennings

Chris Jennings

Board Director (Independent and Voting)

Chris is the Associate General Counsel at Azusa Pacific University near Los Angeles, California, where he manages the university’s litigation and teaches in the pre-law program on the side. Prior to joining APU in 2011, he practiced law at a large law firm in Los Angeles. Chris is a graduate of Boston University (J.D.) and APU (B.A.). Chris joined Partner’s board in June 2015 and served also from 2010 to 2013. He's dedicated to Partner’s vision of helping oppressed children find freedom and fullness of life, and has a desire to set out long-term strategies to help Partners fulfil that vision. He lives in Pasadena, California with his wife, Sara, their three children, and Taco (the family beagle). He likes reading, writing, and baseball.

Board Term: 2010 - Present

Mikki Bateman

Mikki Bateman

Board Director (Independent and Voting)

Mikki grew up in the McCall, ID as a pastor’s kid where she learned a love for both the outdoors and the ministry. She’s been married to her high school sweetheart, Terry Bateman, since 1998 and they have traveled across several states during his medical military career. They settled in Fairbanks, Alaska in 2009 along with their three kids, Macy, Carter, and Owen. Mikki has served in Women’s Ministry for 15 years and has a deep passion for teaching the word and helping people connect their “theology with their reality”. She holds a degree in Psychology and Sociology from the University of Alaska and enjoys studying human behavior along side Biblical truth. Mikki is currently serving as the executive pastor of The Landing Church in Fairbanks. She loves being with her family, especially outside enjoying the amazing state of Alaska!

Board Term: 2014 - Present

Steve Gumaer

Steve Gumaer

Board Director

Steve, along with his wife Oddny, founded Partners Relief & Development in 1994 and serves the international organization as President. He also continues to be involved in operations in the United States and is currently a Board Director. You can read more about our founders here.

Board Term: 2012 - Present

Rudi Woerndle

Rudi Woerndle

Board Director (Independent and Voting)

Rudi is an Attorney at Law who lives in Midland Texas with his wife Sandra. He is a long time supporter of Partners Relief & Development and has consulted on developing US donor relations and development. Along with a passion to aid disenfranchised war victims, Rudi’s favorite past time are his grandchildren, Julian (2 and a 1/2) and Henry (now 6 months).

Board Term: 2020 - Present

Aleta Hellwig

Aleta Hellwig

Board Director (Independent and Voting)

Aleta Hellwig joined the PRAD Board in 2018 believing that work of Partners is doing critical work bringing immediate relief, sustainable resources, and love in action to those who in need due to political unrest and disaster. Aleta is a licensed psychotherapist with a private practice in Sierra Madre, CA. She specializes in treating people who have experienced trauma. She has also served overseas with a missions agency and has 30 years of experience counseling non-profit workers. Aleta also has a legacy of work in the SE Aisa region. Her grandparents served as missionaries among the Karen Tribal people form the 1920s to the 1940s.

Board Term: 2018 - Present

Chris Scott

Chris Scott

Board Director (Independent and Voting)

Chris lives in Oakland, California with his wife Alie (R.N), and their two children. Chris' background includes founding and leading Oak Life Church, which is a diverse church community that has a heart for community and justice, as well 15+ years of non-profit experience in Burma and the U.S. Chris has a BA in Cultural Anthropology as well as an M.Div. from Fuller Theological Seminary. Between medical missions and humanitarian efforts, Chris and his family are committed to helping children affected by conflict and oppression experience free and full lives.

Board Term: 2021 - Present

Gregg Prickett

Board Chairperson (Independent and Voting)

Board Term: 2017 - Present