Edith YoderBoard Chair
Edith Yoder, EdM, is the Chief Executive Officer of Bridge of Hope National and serves as community board chair of Bridge of Hope Lancaster. She authored the original church volunteer training manual for Bridge of Hope and developed many Bridge of Hope manuals on nonprofit management, fundraising, and board issues. Edith holds a master’s degree in Adult and Organizational Development from Temple University and a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Eastern Mennonite University. After 30 years with Bridge of Hope in varying roles, Edith is more passionate than ever about building neighborhoods of support for families facing homelessness.
Jassinya Alvarado, M. Ed.Assistant Director of School Climate, School District of Lancaster
Jassinya Alvarado works with the secondary schools, implementing the MTSS framework to support all students holistically. She also provides Deep Equity training for all staff members, coaches staff with classroom and behavior management strategies and provides support to schools to improve the culture and climate. She believes all students deserve a safe, consistent, predictable and positive environment to support them in reaching their highest potential. Jassinya lives in Lancaster and attends Journey Church. Jassinya joined the board because she is “passionate about the mission at Bridge of Hope and the commitment to support families facing homelessness.”
Dixie BeckerAdjunct Professor at Reading Area Community College
On a day full of tears back in 2013, I was accepted as a participant in the Bridge of Hope program. As a human being, I felt crushed and just about hopeless about digging out of a life of working so very hard, but seemingly getting deeper in a financial hole. Bridge of Hope Neighboring Volunteers walked beside me, picked me up and in the spring of 2015, I graduated from the program a changed person with financial rationality, hope, optimism and so much love for the world again. The challenges continued, but I could follow the steps I learned and “walk through the fire” or better yet, “step around it.”
I have worked at Reading Area Community College since 2006 as an adjunct professor of developmental math, working to educate students to fill gaps in high school math, so they can be successful, in the college math needed for their careers and degrees. My Bridge of Hope experience helps me to walk alongside and neighbor students on their paths.
I have been married and widowed twice, the last time in June 2019. I’m raising my son Daniel 15, and my husband’s two grandsons 19 and 20, who have had their own lives filled with trauma and abuse. I just moved into my rebuilt house as a tree crashed through the old house in 2019 shortly before my husband passed away.
I am a member of Bowmansville Mennonite church where I teach Sunday school. It is an honor and blessing to serve on the board of Bridge of Hope Lancaster.
Kyonna BowmanExecutive Director of The Mix
Kyonna Bowman serves as Executive Director of The Mix, a youth development center in Lancaster City. She lives in Lancaster with her husband Kenny and has two sons. Kyonna is actively involved at Journey Church in Strasburg, PA. Kyonna says, “I am excited to serve on the board of Bridge of Hope because the mission & values align so much with my own personal values. Partnering with the Lord, building relationships and journeying with people through life is a privilege that I don’t take for granted.”
Jessica ClawserMiddle School Health Room Nurse for Manheim Township School District
Jessica Clawser works for Manheim Township School District as a Middle School Health Room Nurse. She supports student learning by caring for the medical needs of both the students and staff . As a school nurse, she enjoys being a health advocate for the students and encouraging and supporting them during the many ups and downs of their middle school years. Jessica and her husband, Dan, live in Lititz, PA and together have 5 children . They are members of Lancaster Evangelical Free Church. In her spare time, Jessica enjoys doing hand lettering , any type of artwork, cooking and going on road trips with her husband and children. Jessica says, “I am forever grateful for the support and assistance my two sons and I were given while we were in Bridge of Hope. I am looking forward to doing what I can to help other single mothers get the same kind of hope and encouragement that my sons and I received.”
Kris LundquistRealtor for Shreiner Group at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices –HomeSale Realty
Kris Lundquist holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from Millersville University. Kris is a Realtor and part of the Shreiner Group at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices –HomeSale Realty, where she has served her clients for the past 21 years. She is acutely aware of the need for safe and affordable housing in Lancaster County. The work of Bridge of Home was first brought to her attention when she worked for a small ministry over 25 years ago and saw first-hand how the Bridge of Hope program works and is a bridge toward ending homelessness. Kris says, “I look forward to learning more about Bridge of Hope and how I can use my skills and abilities to assist and work within our community.” Kris and her husband Dave live in Manheim Twp. They have two adult children. They attend James Street Mennonite, and enjoy hiking, camping, theatre and travel.
Crystal MartinAssistant to the Superintendent; Columbia Borough School District
Crystal Martin, Ed.D. is the Assistant to the Superintendent for the Columbia Borough School District. She holds the belief that with consistent, predictable, positive, and safe environments, schools do a better job, more of the time, with more students, across more differences. Crystal’s background in working with schools equips her with a unique voice at Bridge of Hope Lancaster.
Crystal and her husband, Doug, live in Brownstown, PA and attend Lancaster LCBC. Crystal is passionate about the mission of Bridge of Hope and their commitment to families facing homelessness with neighboring relationships.
Lynette MoralesStewardship Consultant, Everence (Central Penn region)
A native of Lancaster, Lynette Morales joined Everence more than 10 years ago, currently working closely with Hispanic and Latino congregations and church members, helping them integrate their faith and finances through congregational services, pastor and church leader resources, and stewardship education. Lynette and her husband, Juan Carlos, have three children and in addition to spending time with her family, Lynette enjoys scrapbooking and sharing the Gospel. She is a member of Christ Alone Fellowship, a Bible Fellowship Church, in Lancaster City, where her husband serves as church planter and teaching pastor.
Lynette stated, “Bridge of Hope’s model alone gives me reason to be excited about being a small part of this work: Mobilizing the church! As a pastor’s wife I see the importance of the Bride of Christ being what God has called her to be. Responding to homeless is just one small piece of the great work God called the church to.”
Jalisa MoweryScheduling Assistant, Signature Custom Cabinetry
Jalisa Mowery has been with Signature Custom Cabinetry for 16 years. For the past several years Jalisa has organized the annual Golf Classic which is hosted by Signature Custom Cabinetry and Bomberger’s Store. The tournament has raised over $600,000 to end homelessness and support Bridge of Hope National. Jalisa lives in Ephrata with her husband Jason and two dogs, and is passionate about sewing and quilting, including making pieces for donation to various charities. Jalisa likes the structure of Bridge of Hope which “includes a three-way partnership, to be more of a hand up, instead of a hand out” for mothers and children facing homelessness.
Dawn Ranck-HowerPastor of New Holland Mennonite Church
Dawn Ranck-Hower, MDiv, is the pastor of New Holland Mennonite Church. Dawn relates to church members and to the hundred children and their families at the New Holland Early Learning Center, connecting families with local social services, including Bridge of Hope.
Dawn and her husband Bryan Hower, live and are active in the New Holland community. In her spare time, Dawn is an avid crocheter, reader, and enjoys hosting in her home.
Dawn has been a part of four Bridge of Hope groups of Neighboring Volunteers and served for four years on the Bridge of Hope BuxMont board of directors. Dawn says: “It has been a joy, through my neighboring and board experience, to see Bridge of Hope give families the extra support that they need to not only survive but to thrive.”
Karen Todd, in retirement, has chosen to grow roots in the heart of Lancaster City where she resides with her husband, Jim. Karen views this as a homecoming of sorts – having worked from 2006 – 2014 in women’s and children’s ministries in various United Methodist churches in Lancaster County. Her heart for urban ministry continues as she serves on LUMINA whose ministry reaches out to the poor in wealth and spirit, sharing the love of God by equipping and encouraging. Karen also chairs the board for M.O.O.S., a before-school program, supported by various area United Methodist and Mennonite churches, that benefits the students and families of Fulton Elementary School. With a B.A. from Grove City College, Karen continues to draw upon her prior 25 years of experience as a senior manager/vice president with Wells Fargo Bank throughout the Philadelphia area counties to provide education and advocacy for others. Karen enjoys hiking, travelling, and participating in any adventure dreamed up by her husband, Jim, and their two adult daughters, Lauren and Kristin. “Since love of neighbor is, for me, the starting and the end point in life, I am humbled to move forward with Bridge of Hope as we share God’s love in tangible ways with people experiencing homelessness and hardship.”
Joan Gotwals YoderCo-owner of Brook Ledge Horse Transport
Joan Gotwals Yoder part of the ownership team of a multi-state family owned/operated transportation company, Brook Ledge Horse Transport, where she spends much of her time in payroll, benefits and general office administration. She received her B.A. from Goshen College (IN) in Business in 1983.
Following graduation she married Terry Yoder and they have resided in Lancaster County ever since. Joan and Terry are the parents of two young adult children.
Joan has served on the board in various capacities with Bridge of Hope over the years, including nine years on the board of Bridge of Hope National and many years co-chairing the Gala Luncheon.
Karene Swartz ZimmermanFormer teacher and Life Coach
Karene Swartz Zimmerman, MA is a former teacher and Life Coach. Karene says, “I have worked with Bridge of Hope for over 20 years and have been a board member, fundraiser, and chaired the Garden Luncheon for many years. I’ve also been a Neighboring Volunteer for 3 families over the years with my church. My husband, Mark, and I live in Lititz and our adult daughters both live in Philadelphia. Mark and I both feel that supporting Bridge of Hope is one of the best uses of our money in supporting a charity.”