We are committed to serving as a loving, cooperative team, believing that teamwork best reflects the glory of God.
International House’s inception in 1998 came from Brenda’s participation in a prayer initiative for the 1040 Window. God soon opened doors for her to be in the homes of local international women, teaching them English. As that opportunity grew and grew, she recruited her friends to help her. In 2001 she founded Local GO!, which in 2004 became International House, Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization.
Brenda graduated with a B.A. in Social Work from Oral Roberts University in 1973. She earned her MSW in Social Work from the University of Oklahoma in 1976 and received a B.A. in Pastoral Studies Ministries from Taylor University in 1999.
Ann began as a volunteer at iHouse in 2005. She joined the staff in 2015. She has traveled extensively overseas listening and learning in places like China, Laos, Thailand, Ethiopia, Haiti, Belize, and Brazil. Her most recent trip was traveling to Jordan to work with Syrian refugees.
Ann has a B.S. in Clinical Psychology from Trine University. She has also completed the Perspectives course and has served as an instructor, teaching lesson #13 The Spontaneous Multiplication of Churches. Ann is certified in Classical Trauma Healing and TEFL certified. She also serves on the Amani Family Justice Task Force.
Heather joined the iHouse staff in October 2016. Prior to that, she was the CFO at a local retail establishment for 14 years and also worked in the medical field. She has traveled overseas on several medical mission trips and her most recent trip was traveling to Jordan in 2020 to engage with the Syrian refugee population living there.
As the director of outreach and operations at iHouse, she spends a lot of her time in direct contact with the local refugee and immigrant population. Heather has an A.S. in Applied Science and is a Certified Medical Assistant, as well as being CPI certified. She has also completed Perspectives courses, serves on the board of the Avalon Food Pantry as well as the Amani Family Justice Task Force. Heather is certified in Classical Trauma Healing for both adults and children, and helping people learn to build joy as they process their trauma is a passion for her.
McKenna began as an iHouse volunteer in 2015. She worked as an intern for iHouse in 2018-2019. McKenna joined the staff in 2022. She worked at Camp Lutherhaven for four summers and has taught swim lessons for 5 years. She has traveled overseas to South Africa twice on mission trips and has been on multiple stateside mission trips. McKenna has completed three years of college at Purdue Fort Wayne, 2 years with a focus in Elementary Education and 1 year with a focus in Psychology and Art. Her goal is to complete her degree and become an Art Therapist.
Jamie’s passion for culture started when she was 8 years old and heard a missionary speak about her experiences in the field. Since then, she has done a lot of traveling through both missions trips and studying abroad. She has worked in International Education for almost 10 years. Her favorite thing about learning new cultures is that each culture presents the opportunity to learn a different perspective of who God is and how He operates. She first heard about iHouse in 2022 while visiting First Missionary Church and fell in love with the heart and mission behind the organization. In 2022, she began in-home tutoring and started working for iHouse later that year. Jamie has a B.A. in International Languages from Grace College, and an M.Ed. in Higher International Education from Loyola University Chicago. She completed her CETLA certificate in 2012 and moved to Fort Wayne in 2013 to pursue teaching English as a second language.
Our Board of Advisors
Thanks to our Board, International House is able to have a profound impact on our community. We are currently seeking additional board members.
Steve Nelson grew up in a small farming community in central Indiana. He remembers as a fourth grader in Social Studies class, dreaming of traveling and experiencing other lands and cultures. Steve studied building trades and worked in construction before feeling God calling him to missions. Steve and his wife Pat then studied Bible and Missions at Fort Wayne Bible College and served 10 years with Africa Inter-Mennonite Mission (AIMM), in the DR Congo as a builder/construction engineer.
They returned home for fifteen years while their 3 children finished High School. Steve worked nine years as a project manager for Colonial Homes, INC. and then they served 12 years with the Fellowship of Evangelical Churches (FEC) as the Africa Regional Director. Six of those years were living in French speaking West African countries. Steve retired from FEC in December of 2019 and now drives a school bus for Blackhawk Christian School. Steve and Pat reside in Fort Wayne, IN, have 3 married children and 9 grandchildren.
Robert E. Rhee
Robert E. Rhee (Bob) is a retired attorney and CPA, having practiced in the areas of elder law, estate planning and administration, taxation, real estate and veterans’ law. Mr. Rhee was also a Certified Public Accountant He is also a retired Air Force Captain.
He has BBA and MBA degrees from Eastern New Mexico University and a JD degree from Indiana University Indianapolis. He was born in Durango, Mexico and is fluent in Spanish. Bob volunteers at International House teaching citizenship classes and the “mancave”. His wife, Nancy teaches knitting and crochet at Ladies’ Club.
Bailey was first connected to International House through the in-home tutoring program in 2016. She has traveled overseas through multiple mission trips and studies abroad, and she is passionate about loving others and gaining a broader perspective through studying other languages and cultures. She works as Development Coordinator for a non-profit organization called Global Action, which provides biblical ministry training for pastors in the developing world. She also does freelance Spanish translation work on the side.
Bailey has a B.A. in International Languages from Grace College and a Certificate in English-Spanish Translation from New York University. She is actively involved in her church, where she leads an ESL ministry and serves on the Global Mission Team.
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