The Emmanne Ministries Board
Samuel and Nancy Mwangi
Samuel Mwangi Ndegwa grew up in Theri, a small, rural village in central Kenya. He became a Christian during his sophomore year of high school. Since then, he has been passionate about his faith and honoring God by serving people. At his local Kenyan church, Mwangi joined the evangelistic team and shared the Gospel with many people. In 2006, Mwangi and his wife Nancy moved to the United States and founded the Imani Restoration Center Church. Today, Mwangi and Nancy serve at this church, where Mwangi is the lead pastor.
Nancy Mwangi was born and raised in Kenya before coming to the United States. In 2013, Nancy received her nursing degree. She has committed her professional life to the treatment and care of those in need. Today, she works at St. Luke’s as a Registered Nurse in the Intensive Care Unit. With over 20 years in the medical field and as a native of Kenya and a citizen of the United States, Nancy’s help to the Emmanne board is immeasurable.
Despite being so far away, Mwangi and Nancy still have a heart for the people of Theri, Kenya. They envisioned doing ministry work to support the village, but didn't know how to go about it. This vision was realized when Mwangi and Matthew Bachali, co-workers at Cadence International, became friends. They began talking about the struggles in Theri and, together with their spouses, founded Emmanne Ministries in the United States and The Solid Rock Foundation in Kenya. The Mwangi's remain committed and passionate about serving the people of Theri, Kenya and sharing Christ's love and blessings with them through this ministry.
Matthew and Jill Bachali
Matthew Bachali has had a heart for Christ and his calling since he was a teenager. After giving his life to Jesus at age 19, he spent his time in college growing intellectually and spiritually through Campus Crusade for Christ in Colorado. He graduated from the University of Northern Colorado in 1991, with a Bachelors of Art in Mathematics and Education. In 1998, he gained his Master of Divinity in Leadership Development at Phoenix Seminary.
Jill Bachali brings compassion and her nursing experience to Emmanne Ministries. She graduated from Seattle Pacific University in 1993 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing. Jill had a career in nursing before choosing to be at home to raise her four children with Matthew. Recently, she returned to the medical field and is now a nurse at Porter Hospice Residence. Jill placed her faith in Christ at a young age and committed her life to serving God with her individual gifts. Jill is passionate about the mission and vision of Emmanne and serving the people of Theri, Kenya.
After working in ministry for 16 years and raising four children with Jill, Matthew joined Cadence International as Vice President for Human Resources (cadence.org). It was here that Matthew met Samuel Mwangi Ndegwa. Mwangi shared with Matthew the poverty and crisis that plagued his hometown in Theri, Kenya. Their bond of friendship and love of Christ enabled them to start Emmanne Ministries. Through this Kenyan-American partnership, Emmanne Ministries works tirelessly to find creative solutions to stop the cycle of poverty in Theri.
Leslie Fox has the gift of communication and a passion for women and children that she brings to the Emmanne Ministries board. After graduating in 1995 from California State with a degree in Deaf Studies, Leslie began serving with her husband, Jeff, at K-Life, a non-profit ministry serving youth. The Fox family served as full-time youth leaders. She also was a mentor to young adults at Horn Creek in the mountains of Colorado, and a substitute teacher at Custer County Schools. After her two daughters began school, Leslie took a position with the parenting resource center, Love and Logic, from 2010-2014.
Recently, Leslie received her certification as a Birth Doula and now helps expectant mothers in the birthing process. She has also been a board member at Community of Faith in Action for the last four years. Leslie has excellent relational and administrative skills that she offers to the Emmanne board. Her experience working with youth, women and families has benefitted the children and village of Theri, Kenya.
Jeff Fox is a pastor and advocate for youth. He received his Bachelor of Communication Studies in 1994 from Westmont College and his Masters of Divinity from Covenant Seminary in 2009. Jeff served as the Area, and then Regional Director at K-Life Ministries (a non-profit ministry that serves and mentors youth and their families) in St. Louis, Missouri from 1995 to 2001. In 2002, Jeff accepted a position as Director of the Damascus Road Young Adult Ministries in Kirkwood, Missouri. Later he joined the Horn Creek Conference Center in Westcliffe, Colorado as the Director of Young Adult Discipleship and Recreation. He remained as the Director of the program for the next five years.
After moving his family to Golden, Colorado, Jeff became a licensed Real Estate Broker. He is now the Team Leader of The Fox Group at Fathom Realty. He has been a board member at Community Faith in Action for the last 4 years, and a leader in the Colorado foothills community as a collaborator and speaker. Jeff has the gift for leadership and has been a mentor to youth his entire adult life. In 2017, Jeff was awarded the 5280 Magazine 5 Star Professional Award that recognizes his integrity and influence. He has excellent business and management skills that he shares with Emmanne Ministries.
Jerod Ridge has been a leader in the Colorado area for over 20 years. He has been an engineer, analyst and consultant for major technology companies in Denver since graduating from the University of Kansas in 2000. Jerod brings his gifts of team building, creativity and organization to the Emmanne Ministries board.
Jerod and his family have been active supporters of Emmanne’s mission since it was formed in 2014. In 2018, Jerod traveled to Kenya and was an integral part of the volunteer program and medical clinic in Theri. “My perspective quickly changed from a distant supporter to very personal. Getting to see lives literally being transformed over there continues to inspire me to follow what Jesus is doing in that beautiful, broken part of our world.”
Jill Fortney has a heart for children that has been demonstrated her whole life. After committing her life to Christ in 7th grade, she knew then that she wanted to be a teacher. In 1987, she earned her bachelors degree in Elementary and Special Education from Eastern Illinois University. She taught in Adams County school district in Colorado after college. In 2000, Jill took a position teaching at Faith Christian Academy. She has taught and nurtured 5th grade children at Faith Christian Academy in Arvada, Colorado, ever since. In addition, Jill has been a volunteer counselor at Royal Family Kids Camp for almost two decades. At Royal Family, she is a counselor to children who have been abused and neglected. This camp provides the children a week of fun with an adult who loves and cares for them. She is also a year-round mentor to a foster child through Royal Family Mentor program.
Her passion for children, gift of teaching and devotion to the Lord are evident in everything she does. As a board member for Emmanne Ministries, Jill uses her gifts to support and improve education in the schools of Theri, Kenya.