Our Board

For more information about YWAM San Francisco Bay Area, visit ywamsfbayarea.org.

Tim Svoboda
YWAM San Francisco Bay Area Coordinator

Timothy Svoboda is currently the International Urban missions Director for Youth With A Mission and also serves as the City Coordinator for YWAM San Francisco and the Bay Area. Tim, his wife and children have served in India from 1983 to 2007. Tim was the National Director for YWAM India, the South Asia Urban Ministry Coordinator and the Chennai City Coordinator. YWAM Chennai has developed into a decentralized movement of 17 focused teams that are living incarnationally and reaching out to leprosy patients, slum dwellers, university students, urban middle class people, Muslims, and into other sectors of society. Tim also was one of the founders for Chennai Transformation Network which is a movement that unites the Christians of the city for transformational ministry. Tim and Karol currently live in San Francisco giving leadership to the ministry of YWAM there and around the world in cities. Tim has also served on the Global Leadership Team for YWAM international and locally Tim has served on several San Francisco faith initiatives. Tim earned his Doctorate in Ministry from the Bakke Graduate University in 2007 and is an adjunct professor for BGU for their courses in India.


John Briggs
Chair of the Board
COO at Mission Builders International

John and Donna Briggs enjoy helping others discover the joy of knowing God and making Him known. With degrees in Education and Resource Conservation from the University of Montana, John and  Donna used their skills and callings to assist small organizations in realizing their very big dreams. Along the way, business opportunities added to their experience and management skills and led them to join Youth With A Mission of Montana in 1984. For the next 15 years, John and Donna served in a variety of roles necessary to develop a new ministry including the areas of communication and business administration. In 2000, John and Donna were literally called out of YWAM Montana and into Mission Builders International.  They have worked to build a team of volunteers who share a desire to know the Lord Jesus and serve Him wherever he leads. John and Donna are available to serve conferences and churches as they challenge and provide immediate placement for those interested in exploring ministry opportunities in the U.S., Canada, and 29 other nations. Their goal is to assist short-term volunteers to come alongside long-term missionaries in over 1,200 operating locations in more than 186 nations.


James Taylor
Vice Chair of the Board, Chair of the Development Committee
Managing Director at The Presidio Group

James is the primary relationship manager for investment banking clients at The Presidio Group. During his more than 30-year career in the automotive industry, he has worked on both the retail and manufacturer sides, developing deep relationships throughout the U.S. and Canada.  Prior to Presidio, James led product planning for Toyota in North America and was also part of the Lexus launch team. James was an operating partner in a number of successful dealerships and worked with Joe Gibbs Racing, Southeast Toyota distributors, and the Wolfington Companies in a variety of automotive opportunities. James earned his B.A. in economics from the University of Cincinnati.


Angela Haythorpe
YWAM Ember Ink Base Director

Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Angela joined YWAM Townsville, Australia in 2000. Serving there just shy of 10 years, she has worked as the Director’s Assistant, has helped develop and assist in the Training, Communications and Music Departments of YWAM Townsville. Angela, along with her husband Luke and their four children, moved to San Jose, California at the end of 2009 to pioneer YWAM Ember Ink (www.emberink.com), an extension of YWAM San Francisco. Luke and Angela currently serve as directors of YWAM Ember Ink.


Greg Hurley
Hurley Wealth Management Group Inc. President and Founder

Greg’s dream is for the Bay Area to be the most generous place on earth especially in the areas of calendar, cash and calling, so that everyone will know Jesus as their Lord and Savior and live as God intended.

Greg started providing financial and investment advice in 1992.  After serving clients for more than a decade as an investment advisor, Greg and Nicole founded their own firm, Hurley Wealth Management Group, in 2005.  Five years ago, Greg began to learn what the Bible says about money and it transformed both his personal finances and his practice, radically. Greg is a Certified Kingdom Advisor and a Certified Financial Planner® professional.  

Greg holds a BA in Business from the University of Phoenix and obtained an MBA in Financial Planning from California Lutheran University. Greg is married to the love of his life, Nicole, with one son, Luke (7), and enjoys family time, iced Philz Coffee, dreaming, reading and blogging to help Bay Area Christians draw closer to God and live the life they were created to live.


Charlie Francis
Chair of Audit Committee, Board Treasurer
Director Government Finance Solution, Opengov                

Charlie has accumulated forty plus years of local government management experience. He has spent time as a government Chief Financial Officer, corporate officer, director, chief of party, team lead, senior manager, and as a senior consultant on international and national public consulting engagements. As of January 2015, Charlie has been working as the Director Government Finance Solution at the software company Opengov.

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Jason Martinez
Board Secretary
YWAM San Francisco Base Operations Manager

Jason did his Discipleship Training School in San Francisco in 2005. He and Justine got married in 2008 after meeting her when she did her Discipleship Training School in San Francisco. Jason has served in most of the departments of the base and is presently the base operations manager. In this position Jason coordinates those who oversee the office, communications, kitchen, maintenance, hospitality and finances. Jason and Justine have 3 children. Jason loves sports, is a Dodger and Lakers fan, is a bicyclist and an avid story teller. 


Gordy McDonald
YWAM Montana Leadership Development

Gordy and his wife, Renee, began their ministry as youth pastors shortly after being married in 1973. In 1979 they joined Youth With A Mission in Kona, Hawaii and have served in the training and equipping of missionaries in both Hawaii and Montana. In 1985 the McDonalds moved to Lakeside to direct the training programs of YWAM Montana and in 1989 they assumed the overall leadership of the ministry until November of 2002. Gordy served as the Northwest Director for Youth With A Mission having responsibilities for the other YWAM works in Idaho, Washington, Oregon and Alaska and Wyoming. In June of 2004 Gordy was invited to join the staff of Evergreen Community Church in Bothell Washington and served there until June of 2007. Later that year the McDonalds rejoined YWAM and are now serving in Montana and at large in the area of leadership development. Gordy has also recently completed a Masters degree in Leadership. The McDonalds have two children, a married son Cory, age 33 and a married daughter Krista, age 29.


Craig Anderson
YWAM Chico California

After graduating from high school in 1985, Craig spent the next six years serving as a volunteer youth worker in his local church and with Young Life, working on his Bachelor’s Degree in Ministerial Studies and then serving as the youth, worship and outreach pastor at the church where he was raised.  In 1992 He and his wife Sharon joined YWAM in Kona, Hawaii to work with DTS schools before moving to Vienna, Austria in 1992. During the time in Vienna Craig led a pioneering team, oversaw a small base and served as the administrator for YWAM Austria.  He served in several nation-wide coalitions in the areas of youth ministry, leadership development and outreach.  In addition, he was a founding member of YWAM’s Central European Leadership Team. 

In 2009 Craig and his family moved to Chico, California where Craig has been the base administrator. During this time Craig completed a Master of Arts in Christian Management and Leadership and in 2013, Craig and three others were appointed to serve as a Base Director Team for YWAM Chico.  He currently serves as President of the Board and also sits on the Board of the Richardson Springs Community Services District.

Craig has been married to Sharon for almost 25 years and they have three children, Caleb 20, Mattias 18 and Katia 15.  Craig enjoys hiking, reading, playing guitar, daydreaming, watching movies, and anything Minnesota Vikings.


Justin Chang
YWAM Berkeley

Justin was born in Taichung, Taiwan. His family immigrated to USA in the 1960’s and he grew up in El Cerrito, CA. He is an electrical engineer by training (B.S. UC Berkeley and M.S. UC Santa Barbara). After 20 years of working at high tech companies in Silicon Valley, he cofounded a fabless semiconductor company in 2000. In 2003, he and his wife made a career change joining YWAM and in 2004 their family moved to China as missionaries, planting house churches.

In 2013, Justin and his family moved back to the Bay Area and joined the YWAM-SF staff. He and Lai Chan currently have a two-fold ministry. Locally they partner with other ministry organizations. One of the partnerships reaches out to visiting scholars at UC Berkeley. Justin is also a coordinator of the “Perspectives on the World Christian Movement” course. The other part of their ministry takes him overseas to Asia. There they serve and equip the local house-churches through teaching and counseling. Justin is a certified Biblical Counselor with the A.C.B.C organization and is finishing his M.A. in Biblical Counseling.

Justin and Lai Chan have been married for 25+ years. Their daughter, Grace, is a recent graduate with a B.S. degree in nursing science and has entered the workforce.  Justin enjoys bicycling, hiking, jogging, badminton, tennis, trying interesting foods and traveling. 

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James Tashjian
Business Entrepreneur & Investor

James grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, graduated from DePauw University in Indiana, then worked in New York as an investment banker, first for Goldman Sachs, then for J.P. Morgan, in mergers & acquisitions. After some early success in New York, James left finance and returned to study, this time in the field of art – as a theatrical actor, and as a painter. He performed theatre in New York, and held art exhibitions in Los Angeles.

Now residing in San Francisco, James oversees real estate developments and tech investments. He is married to Brit and has two sons Eli and Luke. His family attends Reality Church in San Francisco.

James loves the Lord with all his heart, more than anything else, and feels honored to serve on the board of YWAM San Francisco.


Sonja Schappert
Director of Operations: Because Justice Matters.

Sonja is a seasoned nonprofit professional with a twenty-year career in the faith-based, urban nonprofit sector. A graduate of Biola University, she earned a degree in Christian Education Ministry with an emphasis in Children’s Ministry and a Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies with an emphasis in Urban Ministry. She has completed her Master’s in Nonprofit Administration at University of San Francisco (class of 2019). She excels in strategic planning, program development, and fundraising. She is focusing her research at USF on relationship- based theory of change program logic models. 

Before becoming the Director of Operations for Because Justice Matters Sonja worked at theSalvation Army Kroc Center in the Tenderloin, first as an After School Program teacher and Human Resources Assistant and later as Education Director. There, she significantly narrowed the program deficit, increased program visibility in the community, and successfully secured a five-year grant from the City’s Department of Children Youth and Families. She established herself as a strong community liaison and served on the community advisory board for the Tenderloin Community Benefit District’s Safe Passage program. 

Sonja is a native of San Francisco, a seasoned traveler, and spends her free time on urban hikes. With two nephews and two nieces, Sonja adores being an Aunt and spends as much quality time with them as she can. She has a long-time association with the Evangelical Covenant Church denomination and has served on the boards of Alpine Christian Center and Great Exchange Covenant Church of San Francisco. She currently attends Lighthouse Church.