David Zellner is the Director of In-Park Services for Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo, California. Dave was first introduced to The Leaven through a friend and was impressed by the success of our model. "Day-to-day, I see the result of kids dropping out of education," Dave says. "What our young people need most is to find Christ and to succeed academically so they have opportunities for the future." Dave is a former Executive Sous Chef and worked for the corporate offices of Six Flags before relocating to Northern California and assuming his current role at the Vallejo theme park. He and his wife attend Crossroads Christian Church in Vacaville.
Sheilah Tucker has lived in Solano County more than 30 years and is a former broadcaster and now works as a realtor for Coldwell Banker Kappel Gateway Realty. She is a member of the Fairfield-Suisun Chamber of Commerce and Chair of the Travis Regional Armed Forces Committee, is past president of the Soroptimists of Central Solano and has held volunteer leadership positions with the Napa/Solano Girl Scouts and the Solano County Library Foundation. Tucker and her husband, Joe, live in Fairfield, California
Sue Ovitt is a lifelong resident of the Inland Empire in Southern California and a former elementary school teacher. When The Leaven expanded to San Bernardino County, California, Sue and her husband, Gary, because deeply involved in helping establish roots and connections. “I know the importance of education,” Sue says, “and that means I greatly value tutoring, mentoring and providing positive role models in our children’s lives.” In addition to serving on The Leaven’s board, Sue is on the boards of Chaffey College Foundation, OPARC (training, employing and transforming the lives of adults with disabilities), The Community Foundation and West End Family Counseling Services. Sue and Gary attend Community Christian Fellowship in Ontario.
Gary Gottschall is the Deputy Commander, 60th Operations Group, Travis Air Force Base. As the civilian deputy commander, he assists in the management of more than 1,000 personnel and 8.5 billion in assets and all mission support activities, including an operations support squadron providing air traffic control, weather, intelligence, flight management support, and KC-10 initial qualification and upgrade training. Gary, a graduate of the Air Force Academy, retired as a Colonel, Commander, 615 Contingency Response Wing, from the United States Air Force in 2012; as an Air Force pilot, he had over 3800 flying hours, primarily in the C-130. He took part in a wide variety of global mobility missions and deployments while on active duty including Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation New Dawn, Operation Unified Assistance, Operation Pacific Passage and many other contingency and humanitarian operations. Gary, his wife Trish and their two daughters live in Vacaville, CA.
Annette Fortney is the Owner/Operator of the Chick-fil-A franchise in Fairfield, California, a store she opened for the company in September of 2011. A long-time employee of Chick-fil-A, Annette has been a wonderful partner with The Leaven, providing food for many of our special events. Annette is a long-time Fairfield resident, and she and her husband have two married sons. The family attends Real Life Church in Fairfield.
Mat Fratus is the Fire Chief for Rialto, California, the location of The Leaven's first after-school center in Southern California. Before joining the Rialto fire department, Mat served for 24 years with the San Bernardino, California, fire department, most recently as the Deputy Fire Chief. He lives in a San Bernardino County mountain community with his wife and attends the Church of the Woods in Lake Arrowhead. Mat is the father of three sons and has two grandchildren.
Garrett Adair is the co-founder of vitafive, a health and wellness company headquartered in Dallas, TX. Garrett has been part of The Leaven from an early age, having grown up in the Bay Area and serving in many volunteer capacities since he was a teen. “Being halfway across the country doesn’t change how much I care about the Leaven,” Garrett says. “I am thrilled to serve as a board member because this allows me to contribute to the nuts and bolts of the organization, as well as the heart.” Garrett is a graduate of Texas Christian University – M. J. Neeley School of Business and attends Highland Park Methodist Church.
Mike Nail is a retired Judge of the Superior Court for the State of California, holding that position for more than two decades. Prior to assuming the bench, Judge Nail was District Attorney for Solano County for 11 years and Assistant District Attorney for 14 years. Upon his retirement in 2007, Judge Nail wanted to invest his time into helping at-risk children. He was a former member of the Lion's Club and a member and past president of Fairfield-Suisun Chamber of Commerce. He and his wife have three children and five grandchildren.
Osby Davis, former mayor of Vallejo, California, served in that role for nine (9) years in addition to continuing to maintain is law practice in Vallejo. An advocate of Early Childhood reading, Mayor Davis raised the funds for The Leaven to pioneer a Preschool Reading program in Vallejo. "Being on the board of The Leaven lets me do what I like to do," Davis says, "and that is supporting positive activities for at-risk youth in our communities who would otherwise have little or no hope of success." Mayor Davis and his wife, Terrye (a Contra Costa County Court commissioner) have four children and 13 grandchildren. They attend Lighthouse Covenant Fellowship Church in Benicia where Mayor Davis has taught adult Sunday School for the past 20 years.