Chairman – Glenn Cole
Glenn was born and raised in Kentucky and moved to Athens, GA, to attend graduate school at the University of Georgia earning his masters in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. He is married to Kelly, who is the Director of Academics and Counseling at Westminster Christian Academy.
Professionally, Glenn has served in the private sector as a management consultant; in public service and outreach at the University of Georgia as a community development and group decision facilitator, and a human resources consultant to public service agencies; and he now serves as the Executive Minister at St. James United Methodist Church. His most favorite “job”, however, was that of stay-at-home dad, which he did for a delightful three years.
Glenn is currently in the ordination process to become an Elder in the United Methodist Church, to pursue his calling to teach and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. He is currently pursuing the M.Div. at Asbury Theological Seminary as an ExL (extended learning) student.
Glenn went on his first mission trip in 2003, traveling to Scotland with his church staff to work with church leadership in several towns there. He led short-term trips to Russia, working with disabled orphans, and has also served on mission teams in Mexico and Montenegro.
Executive Director- Michael Cantrell
In January of 2000 Mike made his first trip to Russia on a short-term trip to serve orphans. During that short stay the Lord put a love of Russia in his heart. God led Mike to Russia in November of that year to help establish and direct the Russian charity MIR. In early 2001 the Lord bought a co-worker named Olga into his life and they were married the following November. Olga is a talented translator and gifted administrator. Mike, Olga and daughter Valerie have their home in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Mike’s primary call is to help others do what they are called to do. As Executive Director, he helps people fulfill their call to minister in Belarus, Russia, Montenegro, Estonia, Norway and Moldova. He is a founding board member of both Stoneworks International and Sunbeam, an Estonian center for children with disabilities, and a past board member of Mission Global Outreach. He is an ordained minister from Red River Church in Austin, Texas.
Mike has written two books for families and recorded two albums of instrumental music (guitar and hammer dulcimer), and Olga has translated ‘Passion and Purity’ by Elisabeth Elliot, which was published by Shandal publishers in St. Petersburg.
Please visit his personal website learn more about Mike’s life and work.
Director of Operations – Laura Rechkemmer
Laura’s favorite scripture is Lamentations 3:21-23 — “Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
Laura grew up on a farm in Iowa and worked in Business Management after studying at the university. In 2006, she made her first trip to Romania as part of a mission team with her church. The following year, she visited her father in Ukraine as he had a farming business there for many years. During that visit, she visited an orphanage and was certain that God had called her to the mission field.
She lived and worked in Ukraine for several years and then returned to study Russian. She then returned to live in Ukraine for an additional four years and worked with an organization as their Communications and Finance Director. Our organization grew very quickly as we served orphans in seventeen different government orphanages and also had a summer camp for over one thousand children each summer.
God has given her a heart for His children and those that are broken. She believes He has called her to use her skills to help others effectively minister to orphans, children, and hurting people in their countries.
Laura has six nephews and three nieces and is thankful to have an active role in their lives. She enjoys watching sports and spending time with friends.
Administrator- Mary Jean Preece
Mary Jean is the daughter of a Methodist minister and grew up in the north Georgia area. She holds a degree in Risk Management from the University of Georgia and has worked in the insurance industry. Mary Jean became the Stoneworks Administrator in October, 2008.
She and her husband John, an architect, have been happily married for over twenty-five years. They have two children: Anna and Jake. They are members of Cannon United Methodist Church and live in Snellville, GA.
Mary Jean’s hobbies and interests include music, astronomy, and real estate.
You can read more of her story here.