REI-Vietnam News

The Team Behind the Teams

by REI-Vietnam |

Image: The Team Behind the Teams
Randy, Ginny, and Kenneth - REI's Colorado Administrative Team

Are you a sports fan? Here in the United States the American football season is upon us, and a huge number of men (and women too) find themselves sitting on the edge of their seats, glued to their television sets on Sunday afternoons, rabidly cheering on their favorite team. Perhaps you prefer what Americans call soccer and the rest of the world calls fùtbol, and thrilled to the drama of the World Cup a couple of months ago. Perhaps the Olympic Games enthrall you. Whatever your taste in sports, behind the teams of the athletes you admire, you will find a bevy of coaches, trainers, logisticians, bus drivers and so on, all making it work for the athletic team.

In this issue we would like you to meet REI-Vietnam’s team behind the teams, the administrative team working here in our Colorado REI office. (We also have a wonderful administrative team in Hanoi; a future article will feature Madame Lien and Miss Nga.) Over the years we have been greatly blessed by the labors of a number of capable and dedicated servants, including Joyce Sims, Helen Schneider, and Lily Lauer. But with time comes change, and we now enjoy the services of Ginny Motsay, Kenneth Boggs, and Randy Vernon. May we introduce you to each one?

Ginny Motsay

Ginny Motsay serves as our Administrative Assistant to Brian Teel, the director of REI-Vietnam. Although she arrived in the office only a few months ago, Ginny is a long-time member of REI, having taught English at Hanoi University (HANU) with her husband Bob for 10 years. Ginny is originally from the Philadelphia area in Pennsylvania, where she met and married Bob some 25 years ago. After receiving her education at Butler University in Indianapolis she worked with a short series of non-profit organizations before moving to Hanoi with Bob in 2001.

“One of the highlights of my time in Vietnam was entering deeply into the family life of friends we made there,” Ginny says. “Bob and I were able to spend time in their home, share their lives, enjoy holidays together—we were embraced and enfolded into this family in an amazing way. It was also wonderful to know that we were really building into the lives of the HANU students through teaching English.” Ginny continues to build people in Vietnam through her service here in the office, which includes helping with visas and travel plans for our volunteer teams, working to meet the needs of our resident team, preparing required reports, and processing J-1 visas for our visiting Vietnamese fellows.

Kenneth Boggs

Kenneth Boggs has recently joined our REI office staff as our second Administrative Assistant, focusing primarily on visa and travel logistics. This may sound easy, but it goes way beyond getting a flight on Orbitz. In October we have 15 volunteers travelling to Vietnam with the Nurses and ENT teams (we also have a Community Health Team, Business Team, and Veterinarian Team going). Each volunteer has their own travel needs and timetable, and each person needs a visa, which requires a certain back-and-forth dance between the volunteer, our Hanoi office, our local office, and the embassy. Kenneth is one of the key players in this dance.

Kenneth hails originally from Oklahoma, having graduated from JBU in Arkansas in 2007. He has served overseas as well, in the armed services in Okinawa and Iraq, and as an English teacher for 2 years in the Ukraine. Why does he now serve with REI? “I’m excited to be a part of building up the people of Vietnam, even from afar,” he says. “I hope to have the opportunity to invest in people more directly through teaching English in the future. Meanwhile, I’m glad to be a part of REI’s home team!” FYI, Kenneth is seriously dating a young woman who shares his heart for serving others (sorry, ladies).

Randy Vernon has been serving in REI since March 2013, initially doing some of the same tasks Ginny and Kenneth now so ably perform, and currently works primarily in the area of communications. Randy was born in Denver, Colorado and met his future wife Jill at Colorado State University in 1983, getting married in 1985. He and Jill have 4 adult children, and are now getting used to being empty-nesters.

R&J

Randy and Jill are also involved in the volunteer teams which travel to Vietnam, having accompanied the Business Team last March and are planning to join the Business Team for a few days later this month, and then serve as REI facilitators for the Nurses and ENT teams in October and early November. “We’re thrilled to be a part of what REI is doing,” Randy says. “This is what it’s all about: investing in people so that they themselves can build their country. It’s doable, it’s sustainable, it works.”

REI is thankful to have this team behind our teams!

Next month: A Handful of Heroes

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