Operations Director, Co-Founder
Boniface Mwaura Karanja, better known as Boni, is the Co-Founder of Light of Hope Home & School for Girls in Naivasha, Kenya. Originally from Kenya, Africa, and raised by a single mother, he took on the mantle as a father, which is the tradition in Kenya for the eldest son, and with that, the responsibility of educating his 5 younger brothers and sisters.
Knowing the importance of education, and wanting to make a better life for himself, he worked hard to get a degree in International Shipping and became employed in shipping at the Nairobi Int’l Airport.
Following his dream to move to the United States, Boni arrived in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he met Sandy. They became partners for life, not only in marriage but also in ministry. Sharing the same passions, they founded Lighthouse Ministries International, and opened a home and school for girls in Kenya Africa, called Light of Hope Home and School for Girls (LOH), which has been open for over 11 years.
As Co-founder, Boni served as Chairman of the Board of Directors for 14 years, and currently serves as Director of Kenyan Operations. Boni is responsible for the general operations of the home and school in Naivasha, and oversees all staff and students. Boni works closely with the Chairman of the Board in the U.S., as well as the on-site Director of the Home and School.
In addition, Boni works in shipping for SuperValu, located in Hopkins, MN, whom he has been employed by for 18 years.
Having grown up in poverty, Boni understands the struggles that people face, and how very important an education is in order to break that cycle. His greatest desire is to fulfill the call that has been given to him by God; making a difference through education, one life at a time.
After serving three years in the U.S. Army, David finished his education with a degree in Accounting from Augustana College before moving on to management positions with UPS in the Dakotas and then Outward Bound School in Minnesota. His aptitude for numbers led him to 24 years as Finance Director for Tree Trust, and his big heart led him to continue working in the non-profit industry with contract positions. David has also owned two small businesses.
Anyone who knows David knows his passion for adventure travel, and you will find he and his wife of 43 years kayaking or bicycling in the summer and snowshoeing or cross country skiing in the winter.
Director of Marketing, Development and Donor Relations
Erin was born and raised in the southern twin cities of Minnesota, there is no place Erin would rather call home. Family, friends and a good church make the winters bearable, even welcome at times. She is married to the love of her life Jason and has two young children.
Erin has been an in home daycare provider for several years. Her former years working at Infinity Direct, a marketing company, proved essential to running her own business. Working as the accounting assistant to the controller and office manager she wore many hats. The company consisted of five smaller businesses that were intertwined. One of the jobs that she loved most was planning the yearly client events. She has had the pleasure of serving on two non-profit boards. Patiently Waiting is an adoption and infertility support group where she serves on the board as the Administrative Director. She also hosts the support groups in the south metro. As Treasurer on the board of American Heritage Girls for the past two years she has led the charge on fundraising. Working closely with the troop coordinator there have been many planning events from serving activities to troop meetings, really honing her organizational skills.
Erin is thrilled to serve the young ladies at Light of Hope. God is doing such amazing things in their lives and she is blessed to be apart of it.
She can be reached at [email protected]
Sandy Karanja is Co – Founder along with her husband Boni Karanja of Lighthouse Ministries International/Light of Hope Home and School for Girls located in Kenya Africa. For the past 20 years, with her medical background, she has worked at the U of M Hospital as a Respiratory Therapist as well working with special needs children in local schools and homes. She has also volunteered for Teen Challenge and Robbinsdale Women’s Center as a mentor for young girls.
From a young age her heart’s desire has been to help the less fortunate and serve troubled girls. After meeting her husband in 1998, who also shared the same passion, they partnered together and began their journey. Lighthouse Ministries International was started in 2004 and from there they began Light of Hope Home and School for Girls in Kenya Africa, which opened its doors in 2006.
She currently sits on the Board of Directors and Chairs the External Affairs Committee.
Sandy feels it has been an honor and a joy to be serving God through the beautiful girls at Light of Hope and to witness His faithfulness in this ministry and in their lives.
Jeff is an experienced senior executive with more than 25 years in the healthcare technology industry, including medical devices, diagnostics, consumables, services, and informatics.
Jeff currently serves as the Global President of DJO Surgical. His prior roles include President & Chief Executive Officer of Smiths Medical, President of the Global Reconstructive Division at Zimmer, President & Chief Executive Officer of WK Health and President & General Manager of the Global Diabetes Business Unit at Medtronic. Jeff began his career at GE Healthcare, where he held progressively more senior roles during his 14 years there, last serving as President & Chief Executive Officer of GE Clinical Services.
Jeff has served on the Executive Committees and Operating Committees of numerous large, multi-national companies. He has also served on the Boards of Directors of the Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed), the Medical Device Manufacturers Association (MDMA), the Medical Alley Association, the Joint Replacement Hospitals of America, Avidyne Corporation, the American Red Cross Northern Minnesota Region, Cleveland Clinic Innovations, and the Advisory Board of the University of Cincinnati College of Engineering and Applied Sciences.
Jeff graduated summa cum laude with a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Cincinnati and received an Executive MBA from the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt University.
Anne Boldt is an enthusiastic supporter of Light of Hope Home and School for Girls and is inspired by the joyful transformation the girls experience.
With a heart for world missions Anne has been on the (Plymouth, MN) Plymouth Covenant Church Mission Commission for 8 years and the Light of Hope “mission advocacy team” (as a mission champion) at PCC for 3 years.
Anne has visited Light of Hope four times to date.
Anne enjoys serving, needs the details, asks the question why, likes to teach and encourage others.
Anne’s past Christian mission experience includes serving with her husband Mark and son with the Evangelical Covenant Church mission hospital in Democratic Republic of Congo/Zaire as nurse/nurse instructor at Karawa hospital.
Anne is a Registered Nurse with over 30 years oncology experience in hospital, medical device company and chemotherapy and radiation therapy clinic areas.
She works currently as Patient care supervisor in Radiation Oncology department at the University of Minnesota Fairview.
She and her husband Mark attend Plymouth Covenant Church in Plymouth Minnesota and live in Maple Grove Minnesota.
As Light of Hope’s Treasurer, John Harmon oversees all accounting related functions for the organization. He’s responsible for reviewing and analyzing the regular transactional activity, development of the monthly financial statements, evaluating and improving internal control best practices and managing the annual budgeting and tax preparation processes.
John is an Outsourced CFO/Controller for the national CPA firm of CliftonLarsonAllen, acting as Chief Financial Officer for several small privately owned businesses. Prior to his current position, John was a management consultant at a variety of companies for 12 years, a CFO in private industry for 12 years and had worked in the audit departments for two large international CPA firms for 7 years. John has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota, is a licensed CPA in Minnesota and is a member of the AICPA and MNCPA.
In addition to his role at Light of Hope, John serves on the Missions and Worship Arts committees at Messiah United Methodist Church. He has been part of six life changing mission trips to Light of Hope and is incredibly passionate about the mission and the support and empowerment of all the LoH girls.
Tom Williams is a Passionate Follower of Jesus Christ, Husband to Charlene for 32 years (and counting) and Father to 3 Adults: Dylan, Matthew, and Cassie. Tom had the amazing opportunity to travel to Light of Hope in February 2020 and see firsthand how LOH provides Refuge, Restoration and Redirection for the lost and homeless girls of Kenya in a loving Christian environment. The Joy, Love, Kindness, Giving and Fun he witnessed was inspiring and exhausting, but participating in the rescue of two sisters will impact him forever! Feel free to ask him about it!
Tom has held Senior Level and Executive positions in the Grocery Business for 43 years in the Wholesale, Retail and Foodservice segments. He has had the opportunity to travel throughout the US, Central and South America during his career to tour and interact with Produce Growers, Manufacturers, and other Retailers. Tom has been on numerous Industry Boards and was appointed to the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Industry Advisory Committee to the US Secretary of Agriculture (Tom Vilsack).
Tom has been a Church Youth Leader for over 20 years, Coached Summer Traveling and High School soccer in Duluth MN for 15+ years (including leading U15 and U16 Boy and Girls teams to Växjö Sweden to play in tournaments – and win!), and was even Finance Chair and School Board President for St. Michael’s Lakeside School in Duluth. He loves spending time with youth which is why he is so excited and feels blessed to be a part of Light of Hope and help the girls grow in their faith and be successful in life!