Our Board

Founders: Vance and Cheryl Simms

Vance and Cheryl have lived and worked in Ojai, California for over 40 years. "We have been married for 26 years and have 3 amazing children. We feel so blessed and we share a common desire to give back in some way, somehow. Throughout the course of events that have occurred to get us here, there is no doubt in our minds that this is God's plan for us; this is our time and place."

Vance is a successful general contractor in the Ojai Valley. Cheryl owned and managed an Ojai salon for 15 years and is currently employed in the same profession.


Halo Simms

Halo travelled with Cheryl on a mission to Haiti in 2009 and returned after the earthquake, the following year. "My strong desire is to expand my own horizons and serve others, " she says. "I feel it was just the beginning of what the future holds for me to visit and connect with the people of Haiti."

Halo Simms, 19, is a college sophomore at Point Loma Nazarene University, majoring in Business Administration, with a minor in Non-Profit Organizational Management.


Lynn Gardner

From the beginning, Lynn joined the effort to help establish the CTOA support organization. She has visited the orphanage and school in Jacmel, Haiti in order to expand her personal involvement. "Vance and Cheryl have inspired me and shown me that when you have a passion and follow it, change can happen."

Lynn Gardner joins CTOA with twenty years' legal and business experience in Public and Private Corporations. She is a busy homemaker and mother of two children.


Lori LeSuer

Lori has been involved in supporting the CTOA project since its inception. Her first efforts were meant to help old friends in a great cause. As she saw, firsthand, the many lives being changed, she put all of her energy into this project. "From the orphans and the school children, to the people employed by the orphanage and the local vendors providing supplies, it is wonderful to see the positive results occurring. I love the way my own boys are seeing the lives that are being impacted and that they, too, can join in, visit the orphanage and be of help."

Lori LeSuer's professional background is in corporate management and in the past fifteen years she has held the position of Chief Financial Officer with two corporations.


Taffy Lowen

Taffy is a life long friend of the Simms family. Along with husband, Scott and daughter, Julie Rose, she immediately became involved with CTOA. She describes it as, "A privilege to be a part of this amazing non-profit organization. It feels great to work on a project that is life changing and benefits others who are not as fortunate."

Julie Rose adds, " The smiling faces of the children are a continuos reminder of why we are involved. It's such a great feeling to jump into this project whole-heartedly and give back to those in desperate need."

Taffy Lowen is the owner of a retail women's boutique and has nearly thirty years' business experience.


Donna Kirkmire

Donna has lived in Ojai for 9 years. She has recently retired as an elementary school teacher. She has over 40 years experience in the classroom. "It is an honor to work with Vance and Cheryl to enrich the lives of these children in Jacmel."

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