As President of World Hope International (WHI), John Lyon brings substantial global developmental experience and has served WHI for many years. Prior to being elected as President by the WHI Board of Directors in September 2013, John was VP of Programs/Director of International Programs. He has been an advocate and volunteer for the organization for 13 years and served on the board for over four years. As a WHI volunteer, John was instrumental in executing several projects, including the redevelopment of the Caribbean Wesleyan College in Savanna-la-Mar, Jamaica, the development of a water and sanitation plan for WHI concepts in La Ceiba, Honduras and a water and sanitation plan for WHI programs in Sierra Leone.
Prior to his service at WHI, John had a long career in law. He practiced at the international law firm WilmerHale for seven years, during which he helped WHI develop its microfinance program, the First Step Special Economic Zone in Sierra Leone, and Africa Felix Juice in Sierra Leone. John also worked with Houghton College, First Step and Africa Felix Juice to develop WHI’s Outgrowers program. He has also served the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Missouri as a Law Clerk for various units and departments.
In addition to a compelling law and non-profit career, John also served as a water and sanitation volunteer for the Peace Corps from 1998 to 2000. During his service, he organized a community-based construction committee and raised $210,000 for a primary school in St. Leonards, Jamaica, and also helped to raise awareness and capital for a typhoid-proof latrine model.
John earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in Sociology and Political Science from Houghton College and his JD from the University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Law. John is a licensed law practitioner in the state of Missouri and the District of Columbia.
He currently resides in Alexandria, Virginia with his wife and two children.
Prior to joining World Hope, Dr. Padget served in various roles at NetHope in London. From 2011-2014, she was the Deputy Chief of Party for NetHope’s USAID Global Broadband and Innovations Alliance where she led the rural broadband access and infrastructure program working to solve development challenges through technology. She also managed operations and finance for the Global Broadband and Innovations Alliance from 2011-2012.
Before joining NetHope, Dr. Padget served as a monitoring and evaluation specialist for The Bell Group where she led efforts for a multi-state underage drinking program developed by Mothers Against Drunk Driving.Dr. Padget earned a Doctorate Degree in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Texas at Austin and her Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.
Dr. George Beals
Director of Strategic Development
Before joining the staff of World Hope International in March 2014, George served for 25 years as the missions pastor of his local church. His role was to help the church to strategize their role in the Great Commission, which often led them to partner with World Hope International. George completed a doctorate degree at Assemblies of God Theological Seminary, studying relief and development. Currently he serves on the Lausanne Movement Business as Mission Think Tank. George is a Kern Fellow at the Acton Institute, and the founder of the Missions Pastor Forum for West Michigan which brings together mission pastors from many churches to exchange ideas.
George earned his undergraduate degree at Northwest Nazarene University, and his master’s degree at Seattle Pacific University. George and his wife have been married for many wonderful years and have two adult sons.
Director of Rural Development/Hope for Children Program Director
Heather holds an undergraduate degree in Social Work and a Masters in Business Administration from Anderson University. She also received a Masters in Social Work, specializing in Community Development, from Boston University.
After graduate school, Heather opened a children’s retail store that focused not only on selling children’s items but helping low-income mothers pursue a college education. Heather has also taught entrepreneurship classes at a local college and helped found a non-profit organization that focused on providing quality housing for low-income families in her county. In 2005, Heather began to volunteer at WHI and has been passionate ever since about empowering the poor through community based development.
Director of Water and Sanitation
Keith Norris joined World Hope International as a Program Director in 2004, bringing significant on-the-ground experience in rural development and education. Prior to joining WHI, Keith worked in the field of construction for four years managing a subcontracting business. During his seven years living in Indonesia, Keith founded Lembaga Harapan Sejahtera, a local organization focusing on economic development and childhood education. The organization later became the implementing arm of WHI in Indonesia. Keith also taught in the Wesleyan School of Theology and served on the Board of Directors at the Indonesian Wesleyan Church.
Prior to Indonesia, Keith lived in Australia for four years, serving on the pastoral staff at the Wesleyan Methodist Church in Toowoomba, Australia and on the founding Board of Directors of World Hope Australia. He is an ordained minister in The Wesleyan Church. Since coming to WHI, Keith has overseen various rural development projects focused on clean water, food security and school construction. Specifically, Keith oversaw WHI’s housing reconstruction project after the 2004 Asian tsunami, and, under his direction, has helped WHI construct more than 800 water wells for rural communities. Today, Keith oversees WHI’s Water and Sanitation program, as well as the holistic Village Partnership rural community development program. Keith holds an undergraduate degree from Asbury College and a Masters in Philosophy from the University of Kentucky and a Masters in Cross-Cultural Studies from Fuller Theological Seminary.
Dr. Phil Smart
Director of Church Engagement
Phil brings an eclectic background to his role at World Hope International. He has served 10 years as a missionary to Brazil, worked as an International Business Manager and has served in various pastoral positions, most recently, as the Global Outreach Pastor for Kentwood Community Church. These varying experiences and insights have helped him understand and relate to churches and leaders regarding relief and development and the many ways that partnerships can be established and advanced.
Phil has traveled to over 50 countries, speaks fluent Portuguese, recently completed the Chicago Marathon and has authored the book By Any Means. Through the John Maxwell EQUIP institute he has taught leadership seminars in seven different countries. Phil has a love for learning about different cultures, advocating for those who are marginalized or experiencing injustices, and enjoys music, snow skiing, table-tennis and sports cars. His favorite cities are: Rio de Janeiro, Cape Town, San Francisco and Amsterdam.
Phil earned his Doctorate in Leadership and Global Perspective from George Fox Seminary and his Master’s degree from Golden Gate Seminary. His bachelors was awarded to him at Southwest Baptist University in Missouri, where he met and married LeAnn. They like exploring new ethnic restaurants, Broadway shows and traveling. Phil is grateful for their three grown children and two granddaughters and is especially thankful to be working for an agency that advocates for the millions who are less fortunate.
Country Director, Mozambique
Currently a Co-Director for World Hope International, Mozambique, Daniel first joined the team in 2004, coming on board as Program Manager. Though born and raised in the province of Maputo, in the Southeastern region of Mozambique, Daniel received his secondary education in Swaziland before graduating from Wesleyan Bible College in Xai-Xai, where he was then ordained as a pastor. He is currently working on a second degree in Business Management at St. Thomas's University of Mozambique.
Country Director, Sierra Leone
A native Sierra Leonean, Saidu Kanu brings an abundance of knowledge and depth of passion to his position as World Hope International’s Sierra Leone Country Director, a position he has held for over 14 years. As Country Director, Saidu has overseen the drilling of clean water wells, the development of Village Partnerships, the creation of WHI’s Trafficking in Persons Recovery Center, and the establishment of village parent groups fighting trafficking through prevention education. Saidu additionally worked with Houghton College and First Step Special Economic Zone to establish WHI’s Outgrowers Project to connect rural Sierra Leonean farmers with an international supply chain.
Prior to his tenure with WHI, Saidu was employed by the Wesleyan Church of Sierra Leone –where his positions ranged from National Youth Director to National Secretary. Saidu has consulted for a number of international organizations, including Associates in Rural Development, Tear Fund UK and Community Hope Trust Fund. Alongside his current position as WHI Country Director, Saidu also serves as the Director of Projects for the Rotary Club of Freetown.
Saidu received his Bachelor of Arts and Master’s Degrees in Education from Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone in Freetown.
Country Director, Cambodia
Mr. Talmage Payne is a humanitarian entrepreneur and INGO leader. He is the founder of a number of social ventures. Talmage has lived in South East Asia most of his adult life serving in both non-profit and for profit social impact sector. For nearly a decade Talmage was global CEO of Hagar International (protection and recovery of survivors of human trafficking), and helped establish Hagar in nine countries using their integrated non-profit and for profit model.
Prior to Hagar Talmage served with World Vision for fifteen years including Asia Regional relief roles, Country Director for World Vision Cambodia and the founding Chair of VisionFund Cambodia. The Royal Cambodian Government has recognised his humanitarian work numerous times including twice receiving the People’s Medal as well as the Royal Order of Sahametri. Talmage has BA in Economic Development from Wheaton College.
Country Director, Haiti
Thony has vast experience working in the NGO sector where he has had the opportunity to manage several large grants related to community development and people's well-being. He first joined World Hope International, Haiti, in 2001 as part of the child sponsorship team. Over the course of ten years with the organization, he managed child sponsorship, microfinance and health care projects and programs. In addition, he contributed to World Hope’s sustainable programs in Haiti’s communities such as, animal husbandry, farming, infrastructure, vocational training for young people, and health care related to HIV/AIDS.
After spending a few years managing community development projects for other NGOs located in Haiti, including World Vision International and FANM LIMYE (women of lights), he is excited to re-join the World Hope International team as Country Director for Haiti.
Thony studied Business Management/Organizational Management at Hobe Sound Bible College in Florida and received a Bachelor’s Degree at Carbon University in Oregon. Thony and his wife have a young son whom he prays will share his passion to care for people. Thony also prays that God will protect the entire team at WHI and bring blessings upon the work they are doing on a regular basis.
Country Director, Zambia
Bio coming soon!
Carrie Jo Cain
Program Manager, Isolation Facility and Infection Control
Bio coming soon!
Bio coming soon!
Education Program Manager
Angela is a longtime volunteer with World Hope International’s Communities United Partnership program in Sierra Leone. She lived and worked in rural and economic development in five Sierra Leonean villages for nearly two years from 2006-2008. She comes to WHI as Education Program Manager, working as part of the Hope for Children (child sponsorship) team to manage all aspects of the program, with outreach primarily focused in Guatemala, Sierra Leone and India. Angela obtained a Bachelor of Social Work from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and a Masters of Business Administration at Anderson University in Indiana. She brings a strong academic foundation to her work, as well as a passion for social service.
Education Donor Relations Manager
First joining the organization in 2007, Christy aided in gift processing and donor relations for WHI before taking six months to travel across Southern Zambia, gathering data and photos on program impact and facilitating oversees staff trainings. Upon her return, she began work as a Development Coordinator and now acts as WHI’s Education Donor Relations Manager. Though social justice remains her passion, Christy has a diverse background as a graduate from Houghton College with a degree in Psychology and previous experience within the residential real-estate business, alongside her husband. Together, they currently reside outside of Washington DC.