Changing Hearts and Bringing Hope


Mike returns to Lifeline after 5 years as Chief Financial Officer at Concordia Lutheran High School.  Mike has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Management from Indiana University. When not in the office, Mike enjoys spending time traveling with his wife to visit their children and grandchildren. He has served on many boards consisting of United Way, Kiwanis Club and Warsaw Community School Corporation to name a few. 



Brenda Gerber joined Lifeline as Vice President of Development in January 2014. She spent the previous two years in Indianapolis, where she served both the Governor and the First Lady of Indiana.  She served as the Deputy Finance Director for the “Mike Pence for Indiana” campaign and as the First Lady’s Chief of Staff. In 2012, Brenda was selected to serve on the Statewide GOP Platform Committee and was elected as a Delegate to the GOP State Convention. Brenda currently sits on the Board of Governors for the Richard G. Lugar Excellence in Public Service Series. The Lugar Series is a national leadership program that provides specialized training in preparation for service in key governmental and political positions, including fundraising. Brenda is a fourth generation Fort Wayne native.  She received her bachelor’s degree from Indiana University, where she continues to serve on the Indiana University Board of Associates.  Besides her children, Bailey and Brady, she considers her single greatest achievement co-founding the Carriage House—a psychosocial rehabilitation facility established to restore seriously mentally ill persons to maximum social and employment functioning.





​Jacquie Downey joined the Lifeline team in January 2015 as Vice President of Marketing. She received her MBA from Miami of Ohio, and her Bachelor's degree from Ball State University. Prior to Lifeline, Jacquie worked for Weaver Popcorn, Momper Insulation and most recently, as the Director of Sales and Marketing for Shindigz. Jacquie is married to Eric and they have 3 children. When Jacquie is not working, you can find her on the tennis court. When not playing tennis, she can be found reading, at a sporting event or helping her parents. Jacquie is very excited to be a part of the team here and commented that the company has so much to offer our youths and families and is looking forward to seeing the changes that occur with them, while also knowing what a great impact it will have on her and her family.



Deb has been with Lifeline Youth & Family Services since December 2002. Deb holds a degree in Christian counseling. She loves working at Lifeline because of the wonderful people she gets to work with. In her free time, Deb loves getting out for a day by herself with her camera; She has considered many careers in her life and wishes she had many lives to live so she could try them all, including photographer for National Geographic, phlebotomist, marine biologist, dancer, underwriter, nurse practitioner, pilot, horse trainer, veterinarian, astronaut, geneticist, mechanical engineer, architect, professional swimmer, and many others.
Tanya Carpenter joined the Lifeline team on October 1, 2014 as Executive Assistant to Mark Terrell. She has worked the past 20+ years as an Executive Assistant with the last 9 years at Tower/Old National Bank. Prior to that she was Executive Assistant at Physicians Health Plan (PHP) for nearly 10 years. Tanya has been married to her husband Bob for 16 years and has one daughter, Gabrielle who is 11. The Carpenters are members of Emanuel Lutheran Church in New Haven.

Mark Terrell graduated from Taylor University in 1984 with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Systems. Since 1994, he has served as the CEO of Lifeline Youth and Family Services, Inc. Through this role, he has become involved with the Indiana Association of Residential Child Caring Agencies,which spends much of its time lobbying for the needs of children and families.  His experience brought him to testify during two separate congressional hearings. Mark was also a charter member of The Institute of Organizational Effectiveness, a recipient of Taylor University’s “Distinguished Alumnus for Personal Achievement” Award (2005), and featured in Business People Magazine (2008). Prior to leading Lifeline, Mark was a retirement and estate planning specialist with Northwestern Mutual Life.  In his free time, Mark enjoys spending time with his wife, their four children and 2 grandchildren, as well as being involved in their church and coaching high school sports.



Liz joined Lifeline's Home Based Services team in June of 2005. Currently the Lead Regional Coordinator, Liz has held many different positions in the Home Based Services and CRT programs during her time at Lifeline. She enjoys Lifeline’s diversity of programming and the opportunities that the organization brings to its employees, clients, and communities. Liz attended Trine University where she completed her Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice and Psychology, as well as being an active member of the softball team. Being part of a strong team is very important to Liz and she is proud to be part of the Lifeline team. After hours you will find Liz spending time with her husband, Kevin, and her sons, Hudson and Owen or watching funny movies.     



Deb Johnson has been employed at Lifeline since November 1998.  Originally from Portland, IN, Deb earned two degrees from Indiana State University—one in Social Work and one in Psychology.  She has now worked in these fields in some capacity for twenty years, in addition to spending 11 years working as an Emergency Department Liaison for two major trauma centers.  One of the many reasons Deb enjoys her work with Lifeline is because she loves helping families and children move forward with great success.  Deb and her husband, Fred, love spending time with their beloved dog Simon, swimming, or caring for their garden.  When she has free time, Deb also enjoys a good game of tennis or a long walk.



Jennifer joined Lifeline’s team in 1996.  She grew up in Michigan before moving to Indiana to attend Taylor University where she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in social work.  After starting out in direct client care, Jennifer found her niche on the administrative side of nonprofit organizations and continues to use her social work background as she seeks funding for Lifeline’s programs and services.  After a busy week of work, Jennifer and her husband, Rick, look forward to relaxing Sundays filled with worship, homemade pizza, football, and the antics of their two sons.









Joe began his time with Lifeline as a volunteer in 1999, and began employment four
years later in February 2003. He was the Director of Programs and Services in our residential services. He holds two Bachelors’ degrees from Grace College—one in Graphic Design and one in Religious Studies. One of Joe’s favorite things about working at Lifeline is that every day is different, bringing new challenges and blessings every step of the way. In addition to his title at Lifeline and proud role as a husband to his wife Rebecca and father to his daughter Salem, Joe could also be described as an Apple nerd, tinker, technology enthusiast, and mountain climber.

Ruth has faithfully served Lifeline since March 2005. Fully equipped for her critical role at Lifeline, Ruth holds a Masters of Social Work (MSW) degree from Wayne State University, with a focus in mental health and addictions, and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and Licensed Clinical Addictions Counselor (LCAC).  In her role at Lifeline, Ruth loves the challenge of program development and training, and the ability to encourage staff in their own professional development. When she’s not providing clinical oversight for Lifeline’s programs, Ruth may be reading, traveling, or spending time with friends and family.
Rick began his work helping children and families when he started employment with New Frontiers in 1995. When New Frontiers and Lifeline merged in July 2000, Rick joined the Lifeline team and today is our Director of Clinical Services.  A graduate of Grace College, Rick majored in Counseling and Psychology with a Minor in Biblical Studies. In 1997 Rick earned his Masters of Arts in Counseling. In his role at Lifeline, Rick loves being able to see kid’s and family’s lives impacted in multiple ways, including educational , behavioral, relational, and spiritual development. He and his wife Jamie stay busy cheering on their four children in the various activities they are involved in. 
Bernice Bush has been employed with Lifeline since 2006 and currently serves as Project Incentive Director. Bernice graduated from International Business College and has gained management experience as a Placement Director at ITT Technical Institute, an Office Manager for Foellinger Foundation, and an Independent Mary Kay Sales Director. She also keeps busy by volunteering, which she has done for over 20 years, in children’s and women’s ministries, including roles as a church preschool teacher, music ministry leader, and women’s mentor. Bernice also places a high value on her own family, spending time with her husband Robert or staying active through walking, biking, and playing with her grandchildren. Other things that bring Bernice joy include gardening, singing, and sharing with others in need. 



Kevin Hedrick joined the Lifeline team in September of 2003 as a teacher and then became Vice president of Residential Services prior to his COO position. Kevin holds a Bachelor's degree in Education from Ball State University. He loves working for Lifeline because of his many great coworkers who continually challenge him and encourage him to make a difference. He feels blessed to be able to implement a vision for a better future with like-minded coworkers. His wife, Karen, is an 8th grade English teacher and he has 3 children ages 10, 8, and 5. In his free time, you may find Kevin playing golf, fishing, or coaching his kid’s sports teams. 



Todd joins us from Equity Investment Group where he was the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Todd has a B.S. in Finance with Distinction in Business from Indiana University. He is married with three sons and enjoys biking and other outdoor activities. He serves on the Fort Wayne Community Foundation, Investment Committee member for AWS Foundation and is the Treasurer and a Board of Trustee for Canterbury School. 





Mark Terrell:

Kevin Hedrick:

Brenda Gerber:

Dave Long:

Todd Jacobs:

Jacquie Downey:

Mike Martin:

Todd Jacobs:

Rick DeBoest:


Ruth Skeel: 

Joe Gough:

Bernice Bush:

Tanya Carpenter: 

Deb Johnson:

Jennifer Sholund:

Liz Day:

Deb Durkes:



Good leadership is vital in guiding the vision, direction and culture of an organization. At Lifeline, we're proud to have a leadership team that is passionate about their commitment to Christ, their love for their own families, and their desire to help families and children in need.

Our CEO, Mark Terrell is assisted by five Vice Presidents in leading an organization of over 350 employees. Each Vice President manages a team of directors that ensure the effective operation of each of our programs. 


Our Leaders