Back in 1984, Walter Hoving Home’s founder, John Benton, boldly ventured out in faith and headed out to the “Wild, Wild West” from the Hudson River Valley. Years earlier, he had responded to God’s call to minister to women whose lives had been shattered by drugs and alcohol, when he and his devoted wife, Elsie, had established the first Walter Hoving Home in Garrison, New York . . . and now it was time to do it again in Pasadena, California!
Being a wise and humble man, John knew he’d need some help, and so he gathered around him from the surrounding area an Advisory Board – folks who have shared in his vision of wanting to help these women realize God’s plans to give them “hope and a future,” as
Jeremiah 29: 11 describes.
And what a committed team this group has proven itself to be, with “Dad B.” providing leadership and direction as “Head Coach”! Jo Westervelt, Board member since 2006 and Chair since 2008, likens her role to “Head Cheerleader” to the twelve men and women currently serving on the Executive Advisory Board. Rounding out the squad is yet another dozen members sitting “on the bench” as the Honorary Advisory Committee.
Monthly Advisory Board meetings at the Home begin with an opportunity for members to get to know the Ladies by enjoying breakfast with them and being inspired by their testimonies. Afterwards, when the meeting is called to order, the Board receives current updates from the
Staff and, drawing from their own talents and experience, offer advice and counsel toward furthering the Home’s mission.
Outside of these gatherings, the Team shows its care for the Ladies by being “on the scene,” through such tangible expressions of support as attending Completion awards and Graduation ceremonies, personally joining in the annual Walk-a-thon, or spearheading the Alpha Omega Sorority for program Graduates to provide a continuing link to one another and the Home.
To help insure the continuing success of the life-transforming work that goes on at the Home, the Advisory Board is committed to assist in raising funds and increasing community awareness. Its members have orchestrated a number of spectacular major Special Events over the years – luncheon and dinner galas at venues like the Beverly Hilton and CBS Studios; fashion shows, sports banquets, and golf tournaments . . . not to mention opportunities to show the Home off to the neighborhood, like at the Open House back in 1999, marking the move into Pasadena’s once grand Mira Monte Hotel; in 2009, the 25th Anniversary Celebration, which paired up with the Pasadena ARTWalk; and the now annual Hoving Home Backyard Barbeque (formerly known as “The Hoedown”).
So let’s hear it – cheers of encouragement and prayers of appreciation for the Advisory Board, but especially for the Walter Hoving Home ladies themselves . . . the real heroes who inspire us all!