Candidate bios

OCF Council elections for the Class of 2018 start 1 September. Eligible OCF members are encouraged to vote in the election running through 30 September. Vote for as many as five candidates at http://voting.ocfusa.org. A voting FAQ can also be found at http://voting.ocfusa.org/faq. Members who cannot/prefer not to vote online can use the paper ballot found in the September issue of COMMAND magazine or contact Heidi Martin at the OCF home office: 800-424-1984 or heidi.martin@ocfusa.org. The following candidates are listed in alphabetical order of last name.

 

OCF Council Candidates

Col Amanda S. Birch, USAFR 

Education: U.S. Air Force Academy, BS Mech Eng/Eng Sciences/French, 1996; MIT, MS Mech Eng, 1998; Air University, Air Command & Staff College, 2008; Air War College, 2012; The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy at Tufts University, International Relations, 2015

Present Assignment: Director, Civil-Military Training Policy; Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Manpower and Reserve Affairs (Pentagon)

Ministry Involvement: OCF member since 1998; current Council member; OCF Conference Center Task Force II; local/team leader, Cambridge, MA; Eglin/Hurlburt, FL; JB Andrews, MD; Seymour Johnson AFB, NC; Squadron Officer School and OTS Sunday School, Maxwell-Gunter AFB OCF; Sunday school facilitator, parish council, community soup kitchen board, CGO Bible study and mentoring leader

Personal Testimony: While searching for hope and healing following a hardship at USAFA, a friend, a chaplain, and a small group Bible study helped me see my spiritual need. I began to follow Christ as a second lieutenant.

What is the biggest challenge you see currently facing OCF right now? We must coach, equip, and encourage a diverse group of Christ-following military leaders to be bold but shrewd in ministering to a military community that 1) embraces shifting concepts of community and belonging and 2) faces growing hostility toward Christ and His followers, even while desperate for the hope and healing that Christ alone provides. The corollary is sparking innovation to personally engage OCF affiliates from cadets to retirees to associate members while optimizing integration of OCF’s mission and resources.

Nominated by: VADM Rick Breckenridge, USN; Col Scott Fisher, USAF; MAJ Dave Guida, USA; LTC Tom Schmidt, USA (Ret.); Tamara Waring, (separated USAF captain) 


LTC Vaughn Eric Hathaway, USA

Education: University of Southern Mississippi, BS, 1994

Present Assignment: Instructor at the Command General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS 

Ministry Involvement: OCF member since 2007; OCF Council member (and on Finance Committee); Bible study leader, Fort Leavenworth, KS; North Camp MFO Sinai, Egypt; post coordinator, Fort Sill, OK

Personal Testimony: My father was saved as a U.S. Air Force airman and later became a pastor, passing on his faith and patriotism to all his children. I claim the earliest salvation of Christ as seen in Psalm 22:9-10. Throughout my life in two wars and three fronts and numerous deployments the Lord has been my rock and shield. I trust in Christ alone.

What is the biggest challenge you see currently facing OCF right now? The greatest challenge facing OCF is to continue our partnership with chaplains while boldly standing for Christ and the gospel in a military that becomes ever more antichristian. As soldiers and leaders we must learn to exemplify the virtues of Christ through action and deed so as to cause the lost around us to notice and encourage our fellow believers. We must not compromise our stance in all attempts to pass on our faith to the next generation of leaders.

Nominated by: COL Rich Goldsmith, USA (Ret.); LTC Kristopher Howell, USA; MAJ Benjamin Jordan, USA (Ret.); COL Jackie Kem, USA (Ret.); MAJ Mark Winton, USA 

 

COL Robert (Rob) L. Jassey, USA (Ret.) 

Education: Iowa State University, BS Math, 1981; Kansas State University, MS Industrial Engineering, 1992; Army War College, MS Strategy & Policy, 2001

Present Assignment: Director of Integrated Air & Missile Defense and Deputy Program Director IBCS, Northrop Grumman Corporation

Ministry Involvement: OCF member since 1984; OCF local rep, Huntsville/Redstone AL, other places; taught Sunday school; church admin board; ADAA Board, homeschool board president; taught Financial Peace 3X/year for five years

Personal Testimony: I was a new lieutenant at Fort Bliss. Tami returned to her folks in Leavenworth before my graduation from OBC. I saw our marriage in trouble. I started to read a Bible one night and decided to give my life to Christ. Little did I know, Tami was doing the same thing at the same time in Kansas.

What is the biggest challenge you see currently facing OCF right now? How can we remain a light in an ever darkening world? We must create leaders who can provide clarity while at the same time exhibit compassion for a hurting world. We have got to find ways to connect with Christians in the military on an individual basis, engage in their lives, and provide the courage to boldly live a Christ-centered life.

Nominated by: CAPT Chris Blake, USN (Ret.); COL Rich Goldsmith, USA (Ret.); 1LT Joseph Prinzinger, USA; LTC Tom Schmidt, USA (Ret.)

 

LT James A. Rader, USCG

Education: U.S. Coast Guard Academy, Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering degree, 2010

Present Assignment: Rotary Wing Aviator, USCG Air Station Houston, TX

Ministry Involvement: OCF member since 2006; local leader, Houston, TX; OCF Bible study worship leader & coordinator, Pensacola, FL; assisted starting/hosting OCF group, Portsmouth, NH; USCGA OCF cadet president, worship leader; organize/lead prayer breakfasts, in cooperation with the chaplain; weekly Bible study leader for church‘s military members 

Personal Testimony: I was raised in a Christian home and accepted Christ as my Savior at a young age. In my teen years, I felt called to ministry and eventually joined the CG. I am confident that God has placed me where I am to be His ambassador and to minister to fellow service members.

What is the biggest challenge you see currently facing OCF right now? Duty stations in areas without a strong military presence present a unique opportunity for a tight-knit family of military believers through OCF. Experience unfortunately has shown me that these locales have been lacking an OCF community. The remedy for any OCF member arriving there is to start a group! The challenge arises from the fact that awareness of OCF is not as high as it could be, which limits networking with other believers when arriving at a new duty station.

Nominated by: LT Nate Barnes, USCG; Maj James Groves, USAF (Ret.); LT Levi Rusch, USCG; CAPT Jamie Vandiver, USN (Ret.) 

 

MAJ Stephen T. Schmidt, USA

Education: University of Idaho, BS and MS Family and Consumer Sciences, 1999 and 2001

Present Assignment: Executive Officer, Department of the Army G3/5/7 (DAMO-AV), Pentagon

Ministry Involvement: OCF member since 2014; National Capital Region area coordinator, Virginia; Bible study leader and area coordinator, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Personal Testimony: I attended church off and on throughout my life and was baptized in 2007, but lacked a relationship or mentorship to deepen my relationship with Christ. However, after a challenging deployment to Afghanistan, I began to fully understand the sacrifice that Christ made for me and was born again, fully dedicating my life to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 

What is the biggest challenge you see currently facing OCF right now? Encouraging and equipping military officers to boldly stand for Christ and minister effectively in a military society that presents increasing challenges to open ministry. We must remain clear and focused on effective support to the chaplaincy and Scripture-centered programs that serve to equip military personnel with the full armor of God integrating faith and the military profession. Finally, we must continually strive to increase exposure across the military ensuring maximum opportunity to strengthen Christian military officers at every opportunity.

Nominated by: LTC James Cameron, USA; MAJ Dave Guida, USA; LTC Eric Hathaway, USA 

 

COL Paul (Ric) Schumacher, USA

Education: Mercer University, BS Chemistry, 1991; Washington State University, MS Neuroscience, 2001 

Present Assignment: OSD Policy, NCR

Ministry Involvement: OCF member since 2000; small group leader, West Point, NY and Stuttgart, Germany; Council member, NCR; Sunday School teacher, Fort Belvoir Chapel 

Personal Testimony: I grew up in a non-believing household although my grandparents took me to church occasionally. It was not until I was a junior in college when I understood the real consequences of sin and my need for a Savior. I am forever thankful for the prayers and efforts of my grandparents, friends and the work of the Holy Spirit.

What is the biggest challenge you see currently facing OCF right now? I am excited and look forward to the future of OCF as we come to the end of the Capital Campaign and begin the implementation of our new strategic framework. Our challenge as we look to the future is to remain true to the gospel, OCF’s Purpose and Vision, and our core values while being willing to step boldly into the future as we alter our approach and adjust to a changing society.

Nominated by: COL Rich Goldsmith, USA (Ret.); CDR Steve Hoffman, USN; CAPT Jamie Vandiver, USN (Ret.)

 

LT Benjamin L. Scripture, USN 

Education: USNA, BS Systems Engineering, 2008

Present Assignment: API instructor

Ministry Involvement: OCF member since 2008; regular attender, occasional music/study leader, OCF Pensacola (North); deacon, worship team

Personal Testimony: I was raised in a Christian home and accepted Christ at a young age. I continued to grow through discipleship at church and Christian camps. During my time at the Naval Academy, Flight School, and in the fleet, OCF and similar Bible studies were essential to my sustainment and growth in my walk with the Lord. 

What is the biggest challenge you see currently facing OCF right now? In our current climate of ever-increasing resistance to Christian ideals and teaching, OCF must continue to strengthen its efforts support and equip believers in the military to stand courageously and shine Christ’s light in an ever-darkening world. The enemy is not resting, neither can we. OCF must strive both to empower and embolden our present leaders, and to raise up a new generation of brave men and women to serve Jesus while they serve our nation and beyond. 

Nominated by: Col Chet Arnold, USMC (Ret.); LCDR Matt McDermott, USN; CAPT Jamie Vandiver, USN (Ret.) 

 

Maj Timothy L. Tormey, USMC

Education: USNA, Mechanical Engineering degree, 1999; Marine Corps Command and Staff College, 2011, Master in Military Studies

Present Assignment: Joint Warfighting Instructor, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell-Gunter AFB, AL

Ministry Involvement: OCF member since 1999; assist Hous Waring with SOS/OTS Bible studies, Maxwell-Gunter AFB, AL; OCF home Bible study leader; host/led OCF study; Pensacola OCF participant; co-led Bible study, USS Makin Island; Bible study co-leader, Young Meadows Presbyterian Church, Montgomery, AL 

Personal Testimony: I grew up in a Christian home but really took ownership of my faith in high school. Young Life and Campaigner’s fed me and surrounded me with other believers, including my now wife. Then I was mentored by spiritual giants like Bob Underhill and Tom Hemingway. Through the years my service to God has been overshadowed by intimacy with God.

What is the biggest challenge you see currently facing OCF right now? OCF does discipleship well but the challenge comes in the hand off. Eventually, a PCS/deployment dissolves the discipleship and accountability. Who are the OCF representatives at the next duty station? Is there an OCF member or a Paul that can connect with young Timothy? We need to link the two before they leave and ensure someone is available to welcome them. Initially they are a resource that connects them with the local area and OCF body—ideally they continue discipling.

Nominated by: Maj Sarah Kaiser, USAF; Lt Col Ryan Mihata, USAF; Lt Col Thomas Ira Savoie, USAF; Col Houston Waring, USAF (Ret.)