Displaying items by tag: HeartbeatTeam

Meet the Medical Impact Team: Bryan Williams MHA, RT(R), RDMS, RVT, RDCS

MeetBryanFamilyThis month we are highlighting Bryan Williams, one of our Ultrasound Consultants. Bryan brings wisdom, humor, and encouragement to our team. As he teaches medical professionals in the pregnancy help setting, they benefit greatly as they gain knowledge and inspiration. Bryan has a desire to help others learn the skill of imaging life so they can in turn show life to those they encounter in their pregnancy help center.

Where did you grow up and go to school?

I grew up in Mtn Grove MO. A small town near Springfield, MO. I went to a hospital based x-ray and ultrasound school at CoxHealth in Springfield, MO. I completed my business degree from Evangel University. I completed my MHA at Webster University in St. Louis, MO.

Share with us about your family.

I have been married to my wife Lindsay for 18 years. We have two daughters. Addy is 12, and Izzy is 6.

Tell us about what brought you to Heartbeat International.

I was brought to HB because of my desire to train. The story is long, but I met Cindi Boston at the center in Springfield, MO when I volunteered and trained nurses there. She offered our names up when HB began to think about starting their own training.

What do you enjoy most about your role as Ultrasound Consultant for Heartbeat International?

I get so much joy when I get to teach at trainings. My cup gets filled at each training event. This literally gives me the energy I need to go back to my other job at the hospital with joy and renewed efforts.

What do you love most about ultrasound?

The ability to see life and make an impact in people’s lives.

Tell us about sharing your love of ultrasound with new nurses in the pregnancy help setting.

OB is not something that I really wanted to do. It is something that God pushed me to do. I really enjoy the ability to train others so they can be equipped to do the work God has called them to do.

Where else do you work and what is your role in that setting?

I work at CoxHealth in Springfield MO. I’m the Administrative Director of Neuro and Cardiovascular Services.

What are your favorite things to do?

Spend time with my family, fish, and run.

What else would you like to share?

I’m extremely humbled by the people who do this job every day. I get to play a role part-time, but the people who do this on a regular basis are doing the real work. They are dedicating their lives to serve the ones that cannot speak for themselves.

Meet the Medical Impact Team: Tammy Stearns MS, RDMS, RVT, RT(R), FSDMS, LAS


This month we are highlighting Tammy Stearns, one of our Ultrasound Consultants. Tammy brings love and encouragement to our team, as well as to the many pregnancy help medical professionals she teaches the skill of ultrasound. Tammy and her family have a heart for the world and for all to come to know and love Jesus! It is a blessing to us all to witness the many ways God uses Tammy to bring light to the darkness.

Where did you grow up and go to school?

I grew up in a tiny town called Pontiac, Missouri located on Bull Shoals Lake. I went to college, Radiology and Ultrasound School in Columbia, MO and Springfield, MO. I have a Master’s in Administrative Studies with an emphasis in Communication, along with being credentialed in Radiologic Technology, and Abdominal, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Vascular Technology, Pediatrics and Neurosonography.

Share with us about your family.

I married my high school sweetheart 32 years ago. We have four children. A son who is 30. He and his wife live in Houston TX. Our daughter, Taellor, passed away in 2014 at the age of 19 in the mission field with us. Our two younger boys are Antonio (14) and Slaton (13) who both serve on the mission field with us in Nicaragua. 

Tell us about what brought you to Heartbeat International.

I had the privilege to work with Cindi Boston at her Pregnancy Center in Springfield, MO launching her medical mobile unit. While there, I also helped train some of the nurses given that my background is a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer Educator. When Cindi came to work for HBI, the opportunity presented itself for me to join the team to develop a Limited Obstetrical Educational Program for nurses.

What ministries are you involved in?

My family and I serve as full-time missionaries in Nicaragua. We moved there in 2012 to serve with Project HOPE. I am the Director of Women’s Ministries with a feeding center in the city dump called Center of Hope, UnShackled. This is a place that offers restoration and redemption to ladies coming out of prostitution along with serving women in the jails and hospitals. I also perform ultrasound exams with our ministry’s physician. 

What do you enjoy most about your role as Ultrasound Consultant for Heartbeat International?

I love being part of something so much bigger than myself! God has put together an incredible team whose focus is to share life through imagery. I love being able to come alongside those trying to learn ultrasound to image life and getting to be an encourager in their journey. 

What do you love most about ultrasound?

I love when mom sees her baby for the very first time. Each and every time there is a sense of wonder when we see what God is knitting in the mother’s womb. I never get tired of that! 

Tell us about sharing your love of ultrasound with new nurses in the Pregnancy Help setting.

I love when it begins to make sense. You can tell when someone is worried or concerned about not understanding it. We then find a different way to explain and teach the method or technique and watch the moment of awareness that every teacher teaches for. For some, it clicks faster than others and that is okay as we each have our own journey and our own process. God always equips who He calls. 

What are your favorite things to do?

I love to serve. I love to play with the kids at the city dump or hang out with the ladies from our outreaches. I love spending time with my family exploring the world. In my quiet time, I love to read and write.

What else would you like to share?

It is such a privilege to be able to do ultrasounds. I’m thankful for the technology and the resources that allow us to image life literally bringing Light to the darkness.

Meet the Medical Impact Team: Darcy Noltemeyer

DarcyThis month we are highlighting Darcy Noltemeyer, one of our Medical Impact Office Assistants. Darcy brings joy and encouragement as she provides organization and assistance to our team in many ways. She is a blessing to us all as she serves with a smile and a servant’s heart in all she does. We are so thankful for Darcy and all she brings to our team!

Where did you grow up and go to school?

I grew up in Grove City, a small town just outside of Columbus, Ohio.  For college I attended The Ohio State University for Health and Rehabilitation Sciences.

Share with us about your family.

I have been blessed with such a close family despite being so spread out across different states. My dad passed away when I was a senior in high school, so I am thankful to still have my wonderful mom to hug. I am the youngest of four children, and have six adorable nieces and nephews. I started dating my high school sweetheart when we were 16. We have now been married for almost 3 years, with two rescue Pomeranians, Bingley and Evee.

Tell us about what brought you to Heartbeat International.

Growing up as the daughter of a pastor, I understood from an early age the struggles that many people faced in their lives. I could see for myself how much expressing and sharing God’s love could change the hearts of people and help them when they needed it most. My heart has always been designed to help and serve others, and I never felt like I was accomplishing that fully in the beginning of my adult career. By God’s grace I stumbled upon a job listing for Heartbeat International and I was instantly intrigued. After researching the company, delving deeper into its founding, learning of the current works they were involved in, and their vision for the future; I knew God was calling me to place roots in the good ground they had cultivated. My desire was to be a part of an organization that aligned with my beliefs that would allow me to work wholeheartedly towards advancing their mission. I am thankful to have found that with Heartbeat. 

What do you enjoy most about your work as Office Assistant for the Medical Impact?

Every day is new and varies in what I get to do! I enjoy a job that gives room for growth in ideas and responsibilities. I am very detail oriented, and love being given statistical tasks or projects that allow for me to be creative in presentation. It is so encouraging to be able to share with people all across the world the new hope we can give women, and to receive so much intrigue, excitement, and willingness in response. Overall, I am thankful for the trust that has been placed on me to support the Medical Impact Team.

Tell us about working on the Medical Impact Team.

Working with the Medical Impact Team is so unique! We are spread across two countries and still remain well connected. The trust that is shared amongst each other is nothing short of extraordinary. I have always been so impressed with how valued everyone’s ideas, thoughts, and questions have been with the team as a whole. Since I started here at Heartbeat, I have seen the passion Medical Impact has for the unborn, the commitment to the women, and the sincere heart for the people they interact with daily. They really do keep such a positive and loving atmosphere no matter what the team faces. I have only felt acceptance since I joined, and I love being a part of it!

What are your favorite things to do outside of work?

I enjoy the outdoors! Many of my past times include hiking, kayaking, fishing, and walking my dogs with my husband and friends. I am a certified scuba diver, but I don’t get to do that as often as I would like to outside of Ohio. If it involves tea, I’m in! I spend time going to local tea shops as I travel, and enjoy a nice cup or glass of tea when relaxing at home. I have always loved being an aunt, and spend a lot of time playing with them as well.

What else would you like to share?

Joining Heartbeat International has been such a wonderful experience, and I am proud to be a part of an organization that is moving forward to do great and impactful things in the world.

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Meet the Medical Impact Team: Maria Beigel

MariaFamilyThis month we are highlighting Maria Beigel, one of our Medical Impact Office Assistants. Maria brings joy and encouragement as she provides organization and assistance to our team in many ways. She is a blessing to us all as she serves with a smile and a servant’s heart in all she does. We are so thankful for Maria and all she brings to our team!

Where did you grow up and go to school?

I grew up in a very small farming community called Coldwater, Ohio and attended Wright State Lake Campus for my associates degree in Business Administration. I graduated with that degree in 2015.

Share with us about your family.

I’ve been so blessed by my family and I’m so thankful to have the relationship that I do with my parents and my siblings. I am the fifth of six children and all of my older siblings are married with children now, so I have a lot of nieces and nephews to love on! 14 to be exact. I’ve been married to my husband, Austin, for four years this past December and we have two children - a 2-year-old daughter named Vera and a 5-month-old son named Graham. We also have a very spoiled ragdoll cat named Shapiro (Ro for short).

Tell us about what brought you to Heartbeat International.

When I moved to Columbus and I was looking for a job, my former pastor at my parent’s church, Michael Spencer (who now works for Project LifeVoice), recommended I look into Heartbeat International. As I was growing up, Michael played a big role in developing my passion for the unborn and I was eager to take his advice and I’m so glad I did!

Tell us about your experience sharing APR with others.

It’s always very interesting to tell people what I do for work, because most of them previously had no idea that it is even possible to reverse the effects of a chemical abortion. I love spreading the word about Abortion Pill Reversal!

What do you enjoy most about your work?

Hands down, the best part of my job is reaching out to former APRN clients to see how their experience with Abortion Pill Reversal was and how they’re doing now. The responses that I’ve gotten have brought me to tears. I get to see photos of ultrasounds and born children who wouldn’t have had a chance at life without the APRN, and I get to hear the testimonies of their moms, who are so thankful and moved that there was someone who could help them, even when there were others pressuring them to continue their abortions.

Tell us about working on the Medical Impact Team.

I couldn’t have asked for a better group of women to work with. From the day that I started working with the Medical Impact Team, I’ve felt welcomed and loved and appreciated. This team has faced many spiritual battles and continues to overcome and manages to stay positive in spite of everything. We are a unique team, in that only one of us is actually in office in Columbus. The rest are remote and working all over the country (and one in Canada), which presents a unique dynamic. Because of this, it’s extremely special when I do get to see others on the Medical Impact Team in person and I look forward to our weekly Tuesday meetings where we get to see a glimpse into each other’s lives.

What are your favorite things to do outside of work?

I really enjoy visiting my hometown and my parents and taking my kids to the places I went as I was growing up. I stay at home with my children and love being a mom to them and getting to watch them grow up. I also enjoy reading, doing puzzles, playing tennis, playing board games, listening to podcasts, and going on date nights with my husband.

What else would you like to share?

I’m very thankful to be part of the Medical Impact team! I can see that we are making a difference and I’m so excited to see how God uses us in 2022.

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Meet the Medical Impact Team – Ashley Vance

AshleyVanceThis month we are highlighting Ashley Vance, one of our Healthcare Team Managers. Ashley assists our affiliates with medical questions and oversees the Abortion Pill Reversal Hotline. Before joining the Medical Impact Team almost three years ago, Ashley served as an Abortion Pill Reversal Hotline Consultant. Ashley also brings a background of Medical Surgical Nursing to the Medical Impact Team. If you speak with Ashley, you will be blessed with wisdom, encouragement, and inspiration in your work within the pregnancy help community!

Where did you grow up and go to school?

I grew up in northern Alberta. I left my hometown in the last year of high school where I moved to British Columbia and pursued my nursing career. I completed my nursing degree through Athabasca University.

Share with us about your family.

I am blessed to come from an extremely tight knit Christian family. I have one brother and I call my mom my best friend! I have a family of my own with my lovely husband and we have two small children, plus another one on the way set to arrive January 2022!

Tell us about what brought you to Heartbeat International.

Well, that is a God thing! I felt so strongly in my last year of nursing school that I wanted to join the prolife movement and have God use me in whatever way I was needed. I reached out locally and through my church but never heard back. Doubt crept in and I began to wonder if I was wanting to do something that didn’t actually exist! However, I could never shake the feeling of the call God placed on my heart so I started to do research and every time I kept coming back to the same name- Heartbeat International. I learned about Abortion Pill Reversal and was desperately eager to join! However, being Canadian I assumed that wouldn’t be possible so I reached out to see if anyone could connect me with a Canadian contact. To my surprise they let me know that they were looking for hotline nurses and the opportunity was open to me as well. I was SO excited! Along with being a mother, working for Heartbeat has been the biggest honor, joy and blessing of my life!

Share with us about your experiences sharing APR with others through presentations.

Public speaking and presentations are the biggest areas of growth that I have experienced in my career. It’s so humbling for me to speak in front of other prolife individuals because I deeply admire and respect them! With the guidance, support, and prayers of Christa Brown I have learned so much about this extremely important skill- Spreading the word about the APR mission! Every presentation I have done has connected me with others in the movement and strengthened my understanding of the many other life affirming roles as well.

Tell us about how you offer assistance to affiliates within their pregnancy help centers.

We offer assistance to affiliates in whatever capacity it is needed. That could be establishing medical services, information on STI testing, adding APR or how to find a medical director. For example, during the onset of Covid-19 we worked quickly to ensure we could assist pregnancy centers with policies and insights in a rapidly changing landscape. We work diligently to make sure we provide affiliates with the most up to date and in-depth information available.

Tell us about your experiences helping clients on the APR Hotline and now overseeing the Hotline as one of the Healthcare Team Managers.

My time on the hotline was where I fell in love with the mission. I remember my first shift so well and the feeling of my first call- I was so nervous but so grateful that I had the opportunity to speak with someone in the midst of a pregnancy crisis and share the good news: There are people out there that have no judgement for you, only love and that help is available. This line of work is hard, I’ve shed happy tears and sad ones alone in my office, but every second has been worth it! Now as a manager I work closely with the nurses, and I have seen the network grow in so many ways. It’s been an absolute blessing to witness!

Tell us about working on the Medical Impact Team.

In my eyes the Medical Impact Team is its own family. We are bonded by a love of women, the unborn, family and medical science. We have a unique role within Heartbeat where we oversee the APR hotline, nurse consultants, answer affiliate questions and assist with ultrasound training. There is always more to learn and it’s very fulfilling!

What do you enjoy the most about your work?

My favorite thing (and this is harder than one might think to choose!) is seeing God in details. He really comes through, and often in the most surprising of ways for these women. Sometimes it’s through a Provider willing to see a client after hours on a holiday, sometimes it’s a pharmacy that is open a few minutes late which allows a client to get started on the Progesterone in the middle of the night. Most often it’s in the courage He gives these women to reach out and find us. He whispers into their heart that there is a way out, a second chance available. Witnessing the ways they find us and hearing their stories gives me tremendous respect for these women that fight so hard to fix a decision that they regret and to now save the life of their precious unborn baby.

What are your favorite things to do outside of work?

Outside of work I enjoy slow days drinking coffee on my front porch surrounded by family! I love books, current events, horses, and good conversations with loved ones.

What else would you like to share?

How much we value and pray for the many Pregnancy Centers and prolife ministries around the world! We see how deeply you care and love for these women. None of your hard work goes unnoticed. It’s a true honor to serve alongside all of you!

Meet the Medical Impact Team - Lisa Searle

lisa searleThis month we are highlighting Lisa Searle, one of our Healthcare Team Managers. Lisa assists our affiliates with medical questions and oversees the Abortion Pill Reversal Hotline. Before joining the Medical Impact Team almost two years ago, she served for two years as an Abortion Pill Reversal Hotline Consultant. Lisa brings to our team 19 years of nursing experience with four of those years spent serving within her local pregnancy help center. She brings so much wisdom to our team and is always willing to offer education and assistance to advance the pregnancy help community. We count ourselves blessed to have her on the team!

Where did you grow up and go to school?

I grew up in the heart of eastern North Carolina. Goldsboro is a little town known for pigs, pickles, and planes. Goldsboro is home to the Seymour Johnson Airforce Base. Mount Olive Pickle Company is not too far from town. You will find some of the best Eastern North Carolina BBQ as you drive through headed to the coast which is only two hours away. Barton College is in Wilson, North Carolina. I attended Barton College and earned my nursing degree.

Share with us about your family.

My husband and I are celebrating 17 years of marriage this month. God has blessed us with two children, Costin, 16 years old and Asher, 9 years old. We share our home with two dogs Izzy and Sarge, our crazy kitty Petunia Butterfly, two African Dwarf Frogs, Bobby and Chunky, as well as Karen, the snail.

What was your favorite part of helping clients in the pregnancy center?

Spending time with the abortion-minded client is what I love to do.

Getting to know her, building trust to form a lasting relationship. I enjoy providing abortion education, introducing the client to her baby during her first ultrasound and guiding her down a path of life-affirming choices.

Tell us about what brought you to Heartbeat International.

While working in the pregnancy center I learned about Abortion Pill Rescue Network and was encouraged by my peers to join the team of nurse consultants. I worked as a nurse consultant for two years prior to becoming a part of the Medical Impact Team. I accepted the position of Nurse Manager with Heartbeat International in November 2019.

Tell us about your experiences sharing APR with others through presentations.

Educating the community on how to help a woman who is desperately seeking to reverse her abortion is life-changing and the impact goes beyond what we can predict. The audience is receptive and amazed at how this treatment works. Likewise, I stand in awe at what God has given us—a treatment that can give women a second chance at choice! It really is amazing.

Tell us about your experiences helping clients on the APR Hotline and now overseeing the Hotline as one of the Healthcare Team Managers.

There are currently four Healthcare Team Managers who rotate through the hotline schedule. We each oversee the hotline one week out of the month. The hotline consists of 34 nurse consultants, 3 Nurse Advocates, and a total of 42 shifts per week. The days are tough. We experience spiritual warfare, and the battles are difficult.

Our team believes in the mission of APRN. We are strong in faith and have been called to this position for such a time as this. We fight to save the lives of babies and to protect women and families from the pain of abortion. The devil attempts to deceive and divide but we stand firm that the devil will never win. Our faith in God, our leadership, and our commitment to each other get us through the toughest days. Oversight week is one of the most exhausting weeks, but it is also full of rewards. Making a difference in the lives of women, children, and families makes it worth every second.

Tell us about working on the Medical Impact Team.

Educating Pregnancy Help Organizations on how to best meet the needs of their community is important. I enjoy helping organizations develop medical policy and procedures that will allow them to be successful when faced with an unplanned pregnancy, abortion, STI, and disruption of sexual integrity within their community.

What do you enjoy most about your work?

I love educating people and I get to do it often here at Heartbeat International. Whether I am teaching the abortion-minded client about reversal or the Pregnancy Help Center about starting medical services, I am sharing useful information that can be used to make the world a little better.

What are your favorite things to do outside of work?

Visiting the beach and spending time with friends and family is great self-care for me. You can find me on the dock enjoying God’s beautiful creation.

What is something else you would like to share?

When I was 13 years old, I discovered my love for Women’s Health while volunteering as a Candy Striper in the Labor and Delivery Unit of the local hospital. As a young nursing student, I took a job in an abortion clinic because of my desire to help women and to also increase my knowledge in Gynecology. The time spent in the abortion clinic revealed a painful truth about abortion but most of all has given me an undying passion to protect the preborn and those affected by abortion. After leaving the abortion clinic, I went on to enjoy a successful career in obstetrical nursing. Prior to joining the team at Heartbeat International, I spent four years as a nurse manager of a Pregnancy Center where I was given the support I needed to begin my healing journey. I am grateful to God for his grace and mercy and for giving purpose to my past. 

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The Year of the Fifty

by Julie Stepp, Affiliation CoordinatorYearof50
Heartbeat International

There’s something about 50-year anniversaries that always intrigues me. For one thing, I always seem to be ending up at these half-century landmarks whenever they happen. Whether it’s at my university, in my country of choice for an extensive study abroad, or during the timing of my first full-time job, I find myself celebrating 50 years of something… over and over. I’m starting to wonder, “Does God have something to tell me through all this? Are 50-year anniversaries significant to Him, and if they are, why?”

I started studying where the number 50 shows up in the Bible to search for clues. The first factoid I found was that “Pentecost” means “50” and was a feast that happened 50 days after the Passover celebration of freedom from Egypt. This feast of Pentecost was also called the Feast of Firstfruits and celebrated the harvest God had provided for the people. So evidently “50” was related to freedom, celebration, and abundance in that case. The number “50” also came up in situations involving armies (like a group of 50 soldiers) or measurements (such as “make this area of the temple 50 by 50”). But what really caught my attention was the significance of the Year of Jubilee, which happened every 50 years for the children of Israel and was an entire year of releasing slaves to their families, forgiving debts owed to debtors, and restoring land to its rightful owners. I felt I’d hit the proverbial jackpot. Here was an example in the Bible of a year-long celebration of a 50-year anniversary that God Himself ordained. Maybe here was the answer to my questions about “the year of the 50.”

Let’s take a look together at what God had to say to the children of Israel about this “jubilee year” in Leviticus 25.

First, God told them that every 50th year would be a year of rest – rest for the farmland and the vineyards. This directly followed another year of no crop-planting, as every seven years God commanded a Sabbath rest too. With the 50th year coming right after the 49th, the Israelites were eating what they had planted over 2 years ago. God promised to take care of them through this time and provide for all their needs through their previous harvest. When I read this, I immediately thought about how 2020 was a similar year of rest in many ways. Businesses were closed for several weeks, social events were cancelled or moved “to the comfort of your home.” We didn’t have the option to “plant” our normal seeds in the hearts of our donors and supporters. The pregnancy help movement largely had to depend upon past interactions and strong current supporters to get through this season, and God provided. (Interestingly enough, while we’re celebrating Heartbeat’s 50th birthday in 2021, the fiftieth year of Heartbeat International was 2020. Remember that a child’s first year occurs before their first birthday, and so on and so forth, so 2020 really did match up with our 50th year!)

Then God told His people to “proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants” (v. 10). Slaves were freed and sent back to their hometowns, people who had sold their houses and land were welcome to return to their heritage (very important in those days), and many people got to experience freedom and release. It made me think of the fact that the pregnancy help community does exist to see an end to abortion in our lifetime, but in that existence, we encounter so much more than “the abortion problem.” We see broken families, wounded hearts, drug addiction, physical abuse, and sexual webs woven so tragically you wonder if their effects can ever be un-done. But Jesus came to give us “the year of the fifty.” He came to give not only us, but also our clients, a way out, a way to return to their homeland and repair the broken cities that have been devastated for generations. His power is real, and it works. What we do through pregnancy help inspires people to go back to their families – the places they learned their brokenness – and restore them back to healthy communities.

Last but not least, God promised the Israelites in verse 21, “I will command my blessing on you in the sixth year, so that it will produce a crop sufficient for three years,” speaking of His abundant provision to sustain His people through their 2-year season of rest. Because the provision of the 48th year was so great, God’s people survived and thrived until they could reap the harvest of the 51st year. We’re in that season of rest and provision, friends. The seeds you have sown in previous years are still alive in the hearts God destined for them to be placed in. And not only are those seeds planted in the hearts of your donors, but also in the hearts of your clients. You are a two-sided ministry. Don’t doubt that God will bring to fruition what He planted through you in what seems like the distant past. His seeds have a purpose, and He will accomplish what He has set out to do. Don’t worry about “letting the fields rest.” God saw ahead, and He has commanded His blessing on you.

Just a few more thoughts. As a twenty-something celebrating all these 50-year marks, I’ve realized that it’s so sacred to witness a 50th anniversary. Think about when a couple celebrates their 50th anniversary. It’s such a special celebration because they likely won’t get to celebrate another 50-year mark – their 100th anniversary. Many times, different generations are looking at the same fifty mark and only get to see that fifty mark once. In the same way, a 50th birthday for an organization is a moment that all share together. I get to celebrate what others gone before me have prayed for, wept over, and offered their lives in service to. Heartbeat International, and the pregnancy help movement in general, takes skills, viewpoints, and experience levels from various generations to bring true healing and help to our communities. We are a cross-generational movement, and our 50th birthday is a moment in time that captures our passion together. May this “year of the fifty” be a year of rest, release from bondage, abundant provision, and multi-generational celebration.

As Heartbeat Grows, We Adapt and Celebrate!

IMG 4699In the last few years, Heartbeat has seen some amazing growth! Our affiliate network has been constantly expanding, and with the addition of the Abortion Pill Rescue Network, Next Level CMS, grant programs like Life Launch, and other exciting programs and resources introduced in the last few years, our staff have been working harder than ever to make sure you have all the tools you need to serve the women in your community.

With all of the excitement, Heartbeat’s team has had to adapt to new ways of working together, and that’s why we’re proud to announce that Betty McDowell, who has worked on the Ministry Services team for over 15 years, will be joining Cindi Boston as a Vice President at Heartbeat International.

Betty’s new title is Vice President of Ministry Services, and Cindi will continue to serve with the title, Vice President of Mission Advancement.

"Betty and I have worked together in pregnancy help ministry since 1983, and she has been a wise counselor to me (on matters both professional and personal!) for over 30 years,” says Peggy Hartshorn, Ph.D., Chairman of the Board of Heartbeat International, “So, I can confirm that she brings both a broad and deep level of knowledge, experience, creativity, passion, and wisdom to her position. Plus, her leadership is informed by her love of Christ and a focus on relationship. I can't think of a better combination! I am thrilled that Betty has accepted an even greater responsibility for Heartbeat's services to YOU, our affiliates, as Vice President of Ministry Services.”

Betty will continue to lead and serve the Ministry Services team, as members of the team take new titles as well. Dawn Lunsford, who will continue to make online learning available to the pregnancy help movement, takes the title of Director of Academy, and Christa Brown, who will continue to lead the Abortion Pill Rescue Network and work with those seeking to add medical services to their organizations, takes the title Director of Medical Impact.

Betty isn’t alone joining the Executive team. Director of Operations, Tony Gruber is also stepping into the executive team as Controller, and Danielle White, Esq. takes the title of Heartbeat General Counsel.

While not much changes for you, our affiliates (you’ll still be working with the same people for the same reasons!), we hope you’ll celebrate with us as we grow and adapt.

Meet Ellen Foell, International Program Coordinator

unnamed 14Ellen Foell, J.D., Esq., who previously served as Legal Counsel to Heartbeat International, has recently rejoined the Heartbeat Ministry Services team as International Program Specialist. Ellen’s introduction to pro-life work came as part of a team that defended peaceful, pro-life protesters. Ellen worked as a trial lawyer for many years after graduating from Case Western Reserve University. As legal counsel for Heartbeat, she was instrumental in laying the groundwork for several international initiatives, including our Europe Pregnancy Help Leaders Summit.

Ellen’s heart for the international program at Heartbeat is fueled by her family connections to Asia and Europe, and she is familiar with several languages. We’re thrilled to have Ellen working with the Heartbeat team again, so we decided to do a quick interview to share our excitement!

What did you do before with Heartbeat and what do you hope to do in your current role?

My last “gig” with Heartbeat was as Legal Counsel, a position now well-filled by Danielle White, Esq. I was in the position just under 5 years, and it was a wonderful experience. I had the chance to meet with lots of affiliates, do lots of legal reviews, do some teaching, and basically do all things legal for Heartbeat.

I always loved the mission and vision of Heartbeat, so when I had the chance to come back in a role with even more contact with affiliates, I was really excited. I see the pregnancy help movement across the globe is growing more and more. Look at what just happened in Ireland, a country where we never thought legalized abortion would come, and it did. Heartbeat is in a position to come alongside the pregnancy help centers where the political climate is changing. We have a lot to offer, and a lot to learn from these new organizations starting out, trying new things in new places.

What did you do with yourself between 2015, when you concluded your time as Heartbeat’s Legal Counsel, and now?

I finished writing a book and started getting it ready for publication. I have been doing some work representing ministries and nonprofit organizations. I’ve also been doing some court-appointed work.

I did court-appointed work because I have such a long history of desire to help children. When you do this here, you often get appointed to represent either parents, children, or the best interests of children in abuse, neglect, and dependency cases. I really like it because you get to look at all the facts, and help the court find out what’s in the best interest of these children.

At the same time, it’s like putting band-aids on this incredible cultural systemic problem. It’s frustrating because you can put the band-aid on, but you’re not dealing with the foundational piece, which is life is sacred. God sees the life of this child as sacred, and God sees the lives of these parents, regardless of what they’re doing, as sacred.

One of the reasons I really wanted to take this position is that Heartbeat really deals with the foundational issue – that life is sacred. You can apply a billion band-aids, but if you have not addressed the foundation piece, if you’re not trying to help create and transform the pro-life gospel in a culture, you’re gonna be applying band-aids for the rest of your life. People need to do that anyway until Jesus returns, but I really want to make the years I have left count, and I think this is the way to do that.

What’s one thing that you’ve already really enjoyed coming back to Heartbeat?

I love being a part of a team. It’s encouraging to be with like-minded people again. It’s encouraging to be with people who have a vision to see a world in which abortion is unthinkable.

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