Board of Directors and CEO
All Board members except emeritus members are independent voting members. LWB's Chief Executive Officer is not a voting member of the Board to ensure fiduciary oversight and best practices in charity governance.
Dan Ellsbury, MD; Board Chair
September 2013 to Present
Dan Ellsbury is a neonatologist at Mercy Children's Hospitals and Clinics in Des Moines, Iowa, and the national director of quality improvement for a large physician practice company called Pediatrix Medical Group. He also performs clinical research with the NIH through his affiliation with the University of Iowa as an adjunct associate clinical professor of pediatrics. Dan and his wife, Lisa, have 16 children, including ten who have been adopted from China.
June 2018 to Present
Alan Dahl has been in the business of growing healthcare companies for the last 30 years. He started in the post-acute space and has founded or actively participated in the leadership of several healthcare companies both in the private and public settings. He co-founded a private equity firm that exclusively focuses on working with small and mid-sized healthcare companies and this has been his focus for the last half of his healthcare career. Alan and his wife, Carol, are based in Atlanta, have four wonderful children, and are blessed with four grandchildren. They have a long and active involvement in international adoption and children’s charities.
March 2015 to Present
Lisa Ellsbury has devoted her life to being a mom to kids with severe and complex medical problems. She has a special place in her heart for the many orphaned children she has seen in China and has become an active blogger (seriouslyblessed.com) and advocate for adoption of orphans with special needs. She has connected with a large and generous network of families who have felt the call to care for “the least of these." Lisa and her husband Dan currently reside in Des Moines, Iowa with their 16 children.
August 2009 to Present
Ben Glass is an attorney and entrepreneur in Fairfax, Virginia (www.BenGlassLaw.com). He is the father of nine children, four of whom have been adopted from China. He and his wife, Sandi, are very involved in adoption education and advocacy and are a prime source of information for parents thinking about adoption. In addition to his law practice he runs a marketing and consulting firm teaching lawyers how to market and grow their practices more effectively. Ben is the author of numerous consumer and business books.
Phillip Grahlfs, DO
June 2018 to Present
Phil Grahlfs is an Emergency Medicine Physician at St. John Medical Center in West Cleveland and clinical faculty for the St. John University Hospitals Emergency Medicine Residency program. He was introduced to Love Without Boundaries when his wife, Katie, started a local 5k charity race to benefit LWB in 2013. He is the father of two children, one of whom was adopted from China.
Jennifer LaBahn, MD
June 2018 to Present
Jennifer LaBahn is a pediatrician who lives in Oklahoma with her husband Jacob and their six children. Jennifer began her medical career in the Army, providing inpatient and outpatient pediatric care to children of US service members. She also deployed to southern Afghanistan to provide combat medical care to US soldiers during Operation Enduring Freedom. For the past several years Jennifer has provided medical and developmental consults to families in the international adoption process. She loves LWB’s programs that support family preservation, good nutrition and medical care, quality education, safe foster care, and adoption advocacy. She believes strongly in the LWB motto that “Every Child Counts.”
May 2018 to Present
Marla Louie is from Vancouver, British Columbia. She is married to Sam and both are retired health care professionals. They have three adult married children and two grandchildren. Marla volunteers at the local food bank and is an active volunteer in her church community. She has been to Cambodia several times and is an avid supporter in educating the children and youth in several villages where LWB has a presence.
William Messerschmidt, MD
June 2018 to Present
Bill Messerschmidt is a cardiothoracic surgeon with Ballad Health Systems, in Bristol, Tennessee. He is Clinical Professor of Surgery at the Quillen College of Medicine of East Tennessee State University. He lives in Johnson City, Tennessee with his wife Bonnie, who is a nurse practitioner. Together they have five children, including two grown sons and three girls adopted from China, and two grandchildren. He and his family are very involved with their church, their children’s school and extracurricular activities, and organizations, such as LWB that support international adoption and underprivileged children.
March 2015 to Present
Joanne Owyang was born in Taiwan and immigrated to the US with her family at age five. She has enjoyed a successful career in accounting and finance and is currently the CFO of TechSpace, a nationwide provider of flexible office space and technology infrastructure for small to mid-sized companies. Joanne lives with her husband Jason and their three children in Orange County, California. Their younger son and daughter were adopted from China as toddlers. Joanne was first introduced to LWB when they were paper-chasing process for their first adoption. Fluent in Mandarin, Joanne is committed to raising her children to be bilingual. She loves China, reading, and traveling with her family.
May 2012 to Present
Allen Sockwell is the founder of Sockwell Performance Advisors, an enterprise performance consulting firm. His work centers on assessing organization capability and developing strategies to improve leadership effectiveness and financial performance. Allen has a BS degree in General Management from Purdue University and has continued his professional development at the Harvard Business School, London Business School, and Columbia University. He resides in Austin, Texas with his wife and five children. His daughters Brooke and Macy were adopted from China. Macy was cared for by Love Without Boundaries in the True Children's Healing Home.
November 2016 to Present
Dr. Robert ‘Bob’ W. Spires is an Assistant Professor of Education at Valdosta State University in Georgia. He lives in Watkinsville, Georgia with his lovely wife Amy, who is a school social worker, and his amazing daughter Jane Claire. Dr. Spires was a public school teacher for many years before going into higher education. His research interests originally focused on Mexican immigrant issues in the Southeastern United States, but after discovering many cases of human trafficking of Latin American and other immigrant groups to the United States, he began to turn his focus to human trafficking. Dr. Spires conducted his PhD research on small-scale NGO shelter/schools in Thailand from 2009 to 2012. Since this time, Dr. Spires has continued to work in Southeast Asia with NGOs using education to address marginalized youth, particularly those at-risk of human trafficking.
December 2015 to Present
Brigitte Wang, her husband Park and son Steve have lived in the Queen City, Charlotte, North Carolina, since 2008 when her husband was relocated by his company from their hometown of Shanghai, China. Brigitte is the founder of Shanghai Shoulders Consulting where she uses her human resource management expertise acquired throughout her career in multinational companies to help China local enterprises to recruit, retain and develop talents for their fast-growing business needs. Brigitte is able to find new fun by teaching Mandarin in a Charlotte local charter school and multiple after school programs, where she promotes cultural diversity and inclusion to kids. Brigitte is actively involved in LWB’s China initiatives and helps to bridge two sides of the world with her deep China roots.
May 2006 to Present
Don White and his wife, Grace, are the parents of twin daughters, Reagan YaYun and Sydney YaQiu, adopted from Jiaozuo, Henan. Sydney and Reagan are cleft affected and were two of some 30 children who had their lips repaired on the very first LWB cleft trip in May 2004. Don and Grace are strong advocates on behalf of cleft affected children. Don is the founder and CEO of Treasure Coast Financial Services, a registered investment advisory firm headquartered in Stuart, Florida. His involvement with the MDRT Foundation has resulted in several grants assisting LWB programs.
Amy Eldridge, Chief Executive Officer
Amy founded Love Without Boundaries in 2003 and has led efforts to create and implement life-changing projects for orphaned and impoverished children in multiple countries. Amy believes firmly that passionate and committed people have the power to change the world and sees a key part of her job as supporting and encouraging volunteers around the globe to manage LWB's many program areas. Amy is the author of The Heart of an Orphan, which chronicles how one tiny baby with heart disease inspired a movement to help vulnerable children worldwide.
Paul Duggan, Emeritus Chair
Paul Duggan is the president of Chicago-based Jackson Boulevard Capital Management and the adoptive father to twin daughters from the Anhui Province. Paul has been active in supporting projects to improve the lives of orphaned children in China since 2003, and the entire Duggan family is actively involved in LWB's mission of healing children.