Jacqui Jackson, CEO
Jacqui Jackson is a former foster kid, an international adoptee from South America, and a grateful mommy to a tribe of heart babies and belly babies alike. Her passion for adoption and fostering stems from the legacy that God has given her to steward for His glory, and she is relentless about encouraging and equipping others to walk their own orphan care journeys. Her initial steps towards protecting vulnerable children began in college when she chose to champion at-risk kids as her platform issue while competing in the Miss America Organization. Jacqui used the scholarships earned during those years to attain a Masters in Education and to solidify her dedication to the cause of the Modern Orphan. Now a homeschooling momma, Jacqui has professional experience as a personal representative liaison for the Atlanta Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, a grant writer for the Georgia Family Council, and a teacher who worked with students ranging from the pre-k to the college level. After becoming a first-time mommy through the gift of adoption, Jacqui knew she had found her heart’s desire, which was to be a mother to many along with being an orphan advocate. When she isn’t writing or promoting iHope, Jacqui spends her days chasing after the littles, Pinteresting fabulous domestic diva ideas to “try one day,” training for half marathons, and blogging about mommyhood at www.thegratefulmommy.com. She loves date nights with the hubs because she can wear her seldom-used stilettos, the random game of sub-par tennis, and walking solo through the garden center at the Home Depot. When life has hit a new level of hot mess, you can find her doing “rapture practice” with her kids in the backyard or reaching for her hidden stash of Starburst jelly beans. Her favorite guilty pleasure is donning her amazing white jazz shoes and dancing alone in her living room with the stars on “So You Think You Can Dance.”
Jeff Jackson, COO
Jeff Jackson is a Gulf War veteran, a dedicated husband and father, and the visionary for iHope. Jeff grew up as an at-risk kid. When his dad passed away from complications with diabetes and heart disease, Jeff was just a young boy. Having lost one parent, he knows firsthand the concern, shame, and loneliness a child can feel when his or her security and stability are attacked. Through an invitation to his local church, Jeff found his Eternal Father and quickly realized that every kid deserves to know their Heavenly Father, too. The vision for iHope was given to Jeff when the reality of the spiritual obstacles facing orphans was made clear to him. During a mission trip to East Asia to work with special needs orphans, Jeff felt God’s call on his life in a mighty way. He returned to America passionate about advocating for the Modern Orphan. After his service in the military, Jeff gained 20 years of experience in the automotive industry, including 15 years of experience as a motorcycle race instructor and 10 years of experience in lay leadership through North Point Ministries. An entrepreneur at heart, Jeff is the galvanizing force behind iHope. When he’s not creating videos, graphics, and training materials for iHope, you can find Jeff building one-of-a-kind creations using Grandpa Al’s tools in his “man room,” tinkering on a strangely immobile car that takes up residency in the garage, or wrangling children into their car seats. Jeff retains his right to blast Family Force Five and do the “Chainsaw Dance” at any given moment. He enjoys mountain biking, snorkeling, Mad Skillz Motorcross, and hanging out with the fam.
Callie Sue Wynn, Prayer Warrior
Callie Sue Wynn is a native of Lexington, North Carolina, which is famous for being the barbecue capital of the world. She studies religion and psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has experience teaching the Reeds Baptist Church youth group, along with leading the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and organizing a weekly Bible study during college.
Callie Sue’s passion is best summed up by Mark 3:13-14: And he [Jesus] went up on the mountain and called to him those whom he desired…so that they might be with him and he might send them out.” She loves spending time with Jesus and geeking out over the Bible (specifically near a fireplace with a cozy blanket) and then pouring His love into other people. She also enjoys inventing corny jokes:
Question: What was Noah’s job?
Answer: He was the first ark-itect!
She enjoys biking, running, and hiking in her leisure time, especially when it is enjoyed with good friends. With a heart for international missions and experience working with at-risk children, Callie Sue has brought her love for Jesus, justice, and kids to the iHope family so that the Modern Orphan crisis can be eradicated. She blogs regularly, edits website content, and gathers statistics for iHope.
Her guilty pleasure is secretly pretending she is a wizard in Harry Potter. Running, 70% dark chocolate, and writing poetry are some of her favorite things. Her free time is often spent trying to come to terms with her nerd-like tendencies.
Shelia Harper, Volunteer Coordinator
Shelia Harper is a native Georgian who worked at AT&T in the downtown office on Peachtree Street for over 31 years. After retiring from AT&T in 2001, she found herself starting a new career in the insurance industry with State Farm the following year.
In 2006, she moved to Daytona Beach to be near her younger sister, Sandy. With her connections and influence, Sandy immediately got her a job as an agent with Mitchell Noel Insurance Agency in Ormond Beach, Florida. After 10 years as an agent, she is now working part time in an administrative capacity.
She was called to invest in Ignite Hope long before it began with the adoption of her precious grandson in 2011. It was truly a struggle for her son, Jeff, and his wife, Jacqui, to maneuver through the system with little or no guidance available to help them get their son to his forever
home. Shelia loves that with Ignite Hope, there is prayer, support, guidance, and resources available to all families beginning or currently enduring adoption or fostering journeys so that they don’t feel alone.
Shelia has four grandchildren, all of whom she loves very deeply. Two of her grandchildren are biological, and two are adopted. Her grandchildren’s adoption journeys greatly grew her faith and spiritual maturity in her prayer life. She has seen the importance of prayer during an adoption journey first hand, so she enjoys working with Ignite Hope to help others develop their prayer lives.
Shelia loves meeting friends at the beach for lunch and also enjoys caring for animals, so she has several pet cats and dogs that she lavishes her love upon during her free time!
Her heart aches for all of the children in the world who have never experienced a forever family or known how much God loves them. She loves Matthew 18:5, which states, “Anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me.”