Would you like to request a speaker for your church, business or community group? Email us at missions@orphansheart.org.

Jerry T. Haag, Ph.D., CFP®


Dr. Jerry Haag serves as president and CEO of Florida Baptist Children’s Homes, The Porch Light and Orphan’s Heart. He earned a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from Baylor University and earned a Ph.D. in finance and real estate in 1995 from the University of Texas at Arlington.

He served as an assistant professor at Fort Hays State University in Hays, KS, from 1995-1997 and was named the Mortar Board Top Professor in 1995 and 1996. From 1997-1998, he taught at Samford University in Birmingham, AL, before joining Shades Mountain Baptist Church in Birmingham as administrative pastor from 1998-2000.

He also has corporate work experience with AT&T and is a Certified Financial Planner.

From 2000-2007, Dr. Haag served as president and CEO of the South Texas Children’s Home in Beeville.

In 2007, Dr. Haag joined the staff at Florida Baptist Children’s Homes as the ninth president in the organization’s rich history, which dates back to 1904. During his tenure as president, he has guided the expansion of ministry sites from nine locations in Florida to 23 locations across the state, launched a successful international childcare ministry, Orphan’s Heart, to help children in 16 countries around the world, launched The Porch Light, a ministry focused on preventing child sex trafficking and restoring victims, and established numerous partnerships with churches and nonprofit organizations.

In 2013, he launched The Porch Light ministry, which includes Florida’s first certified safe home for child victims of sex trafficking. The Porch Light also focuses on prevention, advocacy and training efforts to fight the heinous crime and make local communities safer for children and families.

Under Dr. Haag’s leadership, the number of children and families served through Florida Baptist Children’s Homes has continued to increase. In 2006, prior to him coming on board, FBCH served 3,351 children and adults.  In 2016, the ministries impacted 171,273 children and adults.

Dr. Haag has been appointed by both Gov. Charlie Crist and Gov. Rick Scott to serve on the Florida Faith-based and Community-based Advisory Council. He also served as a member of the Citizen Review Panel for Florida Department of Children and Families, which was formed as mandated by the Federal Child Abuse and Treatment Act of 1996. Dr. Haag also chaired the Christian Alliance for Orphans (CAFO) National Foster Care Initiative – Faith and Foster Care Research Team and served on the President’s Advisory Council.

Dr. Haag had the pleasure of being selected to participate in a distinguished seminar on Religion and U.S. Foreign Policy, sponsored by the Institute on Culture, Religion and World Affairs at Boston University. Participants were leaders from around the world who work in academia, government, religious institutions, media and nongovernmental organizations. The seminar focused on how beliefs, values and lifestyles affect economic and political developments worldwide, with special attention paid to the role of religion in world affairs.

Dr. Haag has led and participated in humanitarian aid, emergency relief, childcare and ministry to children and families in countries around the world. He has preached in churches across Florida and Texas. He and his wife, Christi, also enjoy speaking together.

Additionally, he has authored, presented and published academic articles relating to his business expertise and has been honored several times for his business, professional and civic achievements.

The Baylor Alumni Association named him an Outstanding Young Alumnus in 2005. He was named Baylor University’s Vice President for University Development in 2011, where he served before returning as President of Florida Baptist Children’s Homes.

Dr. Haag lives with his wife in Lakeland, FL. Christi is a well-known speaker with “Women of Purpose Speak.” Their eldest son, Ben, lives and works in Dallas, TX, and their youngest son, Brady, attends Baylor University. Dr. Haag and Christi are members of Church at the Mall in Lakeland.

Ron Gunter


Ron currently serves as Vice President for International Childcare for Florida Baptist Children’s Homes and coordinates the work of Orphan’s Heart. Ron was born in Stuttgart, Germany, and grew up in Clarksville, TN where he received his bachelor’s degree from Austin Peay State University. In 1989, he received his master’s degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, TX.

Prior to joining Florida Baptist Children’s Homes in 2008, Ron served as a Southern Baptist pastor in Kentucky, Tennessee and Texas. He and his wife, Cynthia, and their three sons Samuel, Lee and Andrew, served with the International Mission Board in Eastern Europe, where Ron was the Strategy Associate for the Central Europe Field, overseeing work in Romania, Hungary, Moldova, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. After returning from the mission field, Ron served with the Baptist General Convention of Texas, first as Regional Associate for the Greater Houston Area, and then as COO/Associate Executive Director.

Andrew Tattrie

Assistant Vice President of Operations

Andrew Tattrie joined Orphan’s Heart in 2014, and he serves as the Assistant Vice President of Operations. He was born and raised in Charlottetown, PEI, Canada. Andrew graduated with a diploma from Word of Life Bible Institute in Schroon Lake, New York, in 1996, and he earned his bachelor’s degree from Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA, in 1999. He has also earned master’s degrees from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary and from the University of South Florida.

Andrew and his wife, Crystal, have four children: Nathaniel, Emilia, Abigail and Jonathan. They enjoy ministering together as a family locally and internationally, and they serve in teaching and leadership roles in their local church in Lakeland, FL. Andrew and his family have served both as long-term missionaries in Costa Rica and Uruguay, and as short-term missionaries throughout Latin America and Africa. Prior to joining Orphan’s Heart, Andrew was a teacher and an administrator for more than 11 years in Polk County, and he also worked in the missions department at his church.

Howie Hooper

Director of International Childcare

Howie joined Orphan’s Heart as director in June of 2010. He was born and raised in Elizabeth, LA. Howie graduated from Louisiana College in 1983 with a bachelor’s degree in special education/physical education. In 1987, he graduated from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary with a master’s degree in religious education. And just recently, May 2009, he received his doctorate in education ministry from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.

Missions has always been the focus of Howie’s ministries, as he has served as a missionary with his wife, Marvina, and sons, Evan and Seth, in Hawaii, Panama and Honduras for over 15 years. He also served as Volunteer Coordinator for the Florida Baptist Convention where he led volunteer teams to minister in Cuba. Prior to joining Orphan’s Heart, Howie served as the Associate Pastor of First Baptist Church Mount Dora, FL, for 11 years.

Cesar Chahin

Director of International Childcare

Cesar joined Orphan’s Heart as Director of International Childcare in 2015 after a 25-year career in the U.S. military. He was born in El Salvador, where he was cared for by his maternal grandmother until the age of 10. He then relocated to the Dominican Republic, where he met his mother and became “a Dominican” until he moved to the USA when he was 16. Cesar graduated from Columbia College in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and is currently finishing up his master’s degree in management at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.

He and his wife Stella have three children: Lianna, Daniel and Cristian. They enjoy ministering together through their local church, where they have served in teaching and leadership roles. Cesar has served as a Couple’s Sunday School Teacher, Men’s Ministry leader and Deacon Chair.

Alison Wilson

Director of International Childcare

Alison joined Orphan’s Heart in 2015 as Director of International Childcare with an emphasis on our African and European ministry sites. She focuses a portion of her time on developing culturally relevant curriculum for all of the children Orphan’s Heart serves and on implementing strategic community education initiatives.

A Georgia native, Alison is a Southerner at heart. She received her bachelor’s degree in Business with a concentration in Marketing from the University of Georgia. After working in the affordable housing industry for five years, Alison and her husband Pat took a leap of faith and spent 18 months vagabonding and volunteering in over 45 countries. After this adventure, she returned to graduate school where she received a master’s in International Education Policy from the University of Maryland. Alison is passionate about using faith and education to break the cycle of poverty and to help facilitate peace around the world. She and her husband reside in Washington, D.C.

Deanna Berkes

Logistics Coordinator

Deanna joined the Orphan’s Heart family in September 2013. She graduated from Grove City College in 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and political science. A transplant from Erie, PA, she moved to Florida to continue learning Spanish and to minister to Florida’s culturally diverse population. Deanna has participated in multiple domestic and international mission trips, and she hopes to use her experiences to facilitate the planning and coordination of Orphan’s Heart trips. Her greatest desire is to unite “every nation, tribe, people and language.” (Revelation 7:9) As Logistics Coordinator, she will provide service to team members as well as maintain communications between staff and mission participants.

Angela Burkett

Administrative Assistant

Angela joined the Orphan’s Heart family in 2015. She graduated from the University of South Florida with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and is currently working towards a Master of Arts from Liberty University in Christian Ministry with a focus on Global Studies. Angela has participated in domestic and international mission trips through Orphan’s Heart and the International Mission Board, and she hopes to use her experiences to support teams for Orphan’s Heart trips. Her goal is to live out 1 Corinthians 10:31 “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” As Administration Assistant, she will help maintain communication with the team members as well as provide support to the Orphan’s Heart staff.

Kaysey Gilbreath

Sponsorship Coordinator

Kaysey Gilbreath joined Orphan’s Heart as the Child Sponsorship Coordinator in July 2016. Kaysey, a Lakeland, Florida native, received her bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from Florida State University in 2013. She is on track to complete a master’s degree in nonprofit management at the University of Central Florida in December 2016.

Kaysey first became involved with Orphan’s Heart as an intern in Guatemala in the summer of 2012. She felt God’s call to return to Guatemala and spent 2.5 years living there and teaching English. In 2015, Kaysey completed a second internship with Orphan’s Heart, this time at the international headquarters in Lakeland. She is excited to be part of the Orphan’s Heart team and help sponsors to connect with children around the world!

Bumba Dison

National Ministry Coordinator for East Africa

Bumba Dison joined Orphan’s Heart in January 2017 as the National Ministry Coordinator for East Africa, which includes our work in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. Bumba graduated from Uganda Christian University, Mukono in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in environmental science. He is currently completing his master’s degree in research of environmental science at Uganda Christian University.

Before joining Orphan’s Heart, Bumba served as the assistant child sponsorship administrator for Hines Ugandan Ministries, a national ministry partner of Orphan’s Heart. He also served on the construction and development committee providing technical advice on environmental sustainability. He has completed significant volunteer service and internship training with the Department of Natural Resources for the Pallisa and Mbale District local governments. His work and research in these contexts focused on various environmental impact assessments, developing plans for environmental sustainability, and monitoring forestry and conservation projects.

Born in the rural village of Kamonkoli, Uganda, Bumba came to know Christ at a young age. He was involved in the church growing up and benefited from a Christian child sponsorship program. He remains actively involved in church life serving in multiple roles such as music director, interpreter, and his favorite — games director for children’s AWANA each Saturday. Bumba’s passion for children continues to grow and he is able to influence young people to make good choices as they mature into young men and women.

Olivia Juarez

National Ministry Coordinator for Guatemala

Olivia Juarez currently serves as a National Ministry Coordinator for Guatemala. She joined Orphan’s Heart in June 2010 as a translator and now helps coordinate ministry opportunities for Orphan’s Heart mission teams at the Malnutrition Center in San Juan Sacatapequez. She is also responsible for helping manage Orphan’s Heart Child Sponsorship Program. Olivia was born in Guatemala City but moved to Antigua in 2002. In 2011, she was certified as a legal translator through the Guatemala Department of Education. Olivia is currently studying hotel and restaurant management at University Rafael Landívar and French at the French Alliance in Antigua.

Working at the Malnutrition Center has been a life-changing experience for Olivia. Her heart was transformed, and she was given a renewed joy, a passion for serving and a commitment to sharing what Jesus has done in her life.

Alejandra Búrbano

National Ministry Coordinator for Guatemala

Alejandra Búrbano joined Orphan’s Heart in March 2010 and currently serves as a National Ministry Coordinator for Guatemala. Born and raised in Antigua, Guatemala, she graduated from La Salle High School in 2007 and went on to be certified as a legal translator through the Guatemala Department of Education in 2011. She is currently studying business administration at the University Rafael Landívar and French at the French Alliance in Antigua.

In 2007, Alejandra’s life was changed and a passion for missions was born after she went on her first mission trip to La Unión Zacapa. God uses her missions heart and passion for serving children and others in helping coordinate ministry projects for Orphan’s Heart mission teams at the Malnutrition Center in San Juan Sacatapequez. She is also part of the team responsible for managing Orphan’s Heart’s Child Sponsorship Program.

Allen Jason Holmes, MD

Volunteer Medical Director

Jason oversees medical mission trips and medical care for Orphan’s Heart as the Volunteer Medical Director. He has been participating on mission trips with Orphan’s Heart since 2009.   In 2012 he partnered with Orphan’s Heart and Hines Ugandan Ministries to found the Holmes Medical Clinic in Kamonkoli, Uganda.

Jason is a West Virginia native and currently resides in coastal North Carolina with his wife Jennifer, and their three children Jax, Jade, and Jonah.  Jason completed undergraduate and medical school at Marshall University and then completed a residency in Emergency Medicine at East Carolina University.

He partners with Eastern Carolina Emergency Physicians in Wilmington, NC.  Jason considers himself fortunate that God has graced him with the opportunity to work with Orphan’s Heart to use his passion for medicine to meet the medical needs of children and families around the world.