The EmmanuWheel Board of Directors would like to thank Jeff Kerby for seven years of extraordinary service with the EmmanuWheel ministry. We would not exist without his vision, drive, determination and tireless employment of many talents that helped get this ministry off of the ground from inception, to infancy, to a steady, thriving ministry today providing between 40-50 ramps per year to mobility-impaired individuals who cannot afford to provide proper access to their dwellings. This is truly a spiritual work of the Lord. Jeff has certainly paid-forward many “cups of water in the name of Jesus”, both figuratively and literally. We only pray that we can continue this legacy in a manner worthy of half of his energy. May God continue to bless him and his family as he moves to a different state and furthers his military career.
Executive Director and Team Leader Mentor: Chris Sharpe
Chris Sharpe, Director for EmmanuWheel, has enjoyed first volunteering since it began in 2009, and now working for the ministry as Managing Director since 2019. He feels blessed to be chosen by God and mentored by Jeff Kerby, the founder of EmmanuWheel, for this position where he shares the love of Christ and the good news of the gospel with those in need and often in a very desperate situation. Throughout Chris' life, God has been preparing him for this position by providing opportunities to learn carpentry skills, receiving education in design, leading and teaching discipleship groups for adults and teenagers, and caring for his own 3 now adult children with his childhood sweetheart and wife since 1996, Sonja. Striving to be a servant of God, being the hands that build and teach, having the eyes of a father that watches over his volunteers to lead them in ministry and the feet that are willing to follow his Holy Fathers lead. “It is amazing to me what God can do when you just make yourself available to do His work. EmmanuWheel is a wonderful way to take part in a one-day mission trip that may be right next door. It is such a joy to work shoulder to shoulder with my brothers and sisters in Christ as we represent Jesus to those in need.”
Board Member and Fundraising Chair: Donna Groomes
Donna is a retired accountant/payroll specialist with over 40 years of experience in the workforce. She is married to Robert (Bob) Groomes, and they are members of Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church. Bob is a volunteer with the EmmanuWheel team at Mt. Horeb and Donna teaches a Sunday School class and volunteers with the Senior Adult Ministry. Donna and Bob, between them, are the proud parents of four children and Gram and Grandpa to five adorable grandchildren. “When Bob and I first visited Mt. Horeb before we joined, he was excited about the church’s involvement with EmmanuWheel and was privileged to work on several ramps with the late Ed Hartung. Ed’s wife, Char, is so passionate about EW, and between her and Bob, my interest in the organization grew. I am excited to be a new board member and blessed by the many wonderful volunteers who give their time and talents to show Jesus to the world.”
Board Secretary: Charlotte Hartung
When I was asked to be on the EmmanuWheel Board of Directors, I did not hesitate to accept. My beloved husband, Ed Hartung, entered the kingdom of heaven on May, 9. 2012. Ed was passionate about building wheelchair ramps for those in need. He started building ramps in Tulsa, OK. His team built a ramp most every week for 12 years. They are still going strong! When we moved back to SC in 2008, Ed knew that something was missing in his life! Presto – Jeff Kerby and Ed connected and became bonded Christian brothers. It is a priority for me and my children to keep Ed’s legacy moving forward. God has a plan for all of us and I pray that I will listen to Him and follow the right track. I work part time for Weight Watchers and I am involved in many areas at my church, Mt. Horeb United Methodist. I have six grandchildren – such a joy in my life. God has blessed our family and I pray that I will be a good and faithful servant!
Board Member and Finance Committee: Jeff Hartung
Jeff Hartung is the father of four wonderful children, Holly, Jeffrey, Hunter and Susan and a member of Mt Horeb United Methodist. He is the Regional Operations Manager for Hoffman Building Technologies, a building management systems provider. Jeff has been involved with Emmanuwheel since 2012 and builds ramps with the Mt. Horeb Ramp Team. Jeff and his dad, Ed, never built a ramp together although he discussed the ramp build ministry and the whole concept of the ministry at length with his dad. This is why he is passionate about the ministry today. Some key points of those conversations were: The ministry is about Jesus, first and foremost. The relationships should be the focus of the ministry, getting the ramp done, is secondary to the relationships with the client and the other team members. Those serving in the ministry are the hands and feet of Jesus, Jesus chooses relationships over tasks every time. When we keep our focus on Jesus, the Lord blesses the ramp builds and a quality ramp is the result providing mobility to the mobility impaired, while glorifying God!
Board Member and Finance Committee: Beth Hay
Beth has worked in the Steel Industry for over 25 years. She is from East Central Illinois. Her career has taken her from Illinois to South Carolina, Alabama, Texas, Poland, Arizona and back to South Carolina in 2012. Beth has been a member of Mt. Horeb UMC for over 5 years. She enjoys playing french horn in the Mt. Horeb Orchestra, working on the snack crew for VBS, working outdoors, and baking. "On my 2nd Sunday attending Mt Horeb, I was introduced to Joe Pinkham and the ramp ministry. The rest is history. I have participated in more ramp builds than I can count. When I'm not physically able to attend a build I try to drop off coffee and baked goods for the team. I am truly honored and blessed to work alongside such dedicated Christians. Being the hands and feet of Christ to help a client gain mobility in and out of their homes is beyond gratifying. I'm so glad to have found such a great ministry where I can utilize the gifts God has blessed me with."
Board Member: Franco Shaw
Franco Shaw, A native of South Carolina, has been an active participant of Mount Horeb United Methodist Church since 2011. A man who seeks to show himself approved unto God, "a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth". Affectionately known as “Frisco” to many of his family and friends, Franco is a man of few words and much action. A request for assistance or participation rarely goes void. His desire to be God’s helping hands as best he can has led to his involvement in many areas. Franco has been a proud and successful owner of Shaw Pow’r Clean, an automotive and home services company, since 2003. A father of two and grandfather of one, he loves to spend time with his family and friends. Those who know him best are amazed at his genuineness of spirit, generosity of heart, and wisdom of soul. A man who exhibits both the gentleness of a lamb and the ferocity of a lion, Franco advocates and is protective of those who are least able to do so for themselves.
Board Member: Bob Groomes
Robert (Bob) served his country in the military for 21 years. After retiring, he worked for the South Carolina Department of Transportation as a worker, leadsman, supervisor, OSHA safety officer, and environmental health manager for 18 years. Bob and his wife are members of Mount Horeb United Methodist Church where they both serve in various capacities. Bob has been a member of the Mt. Horeb EmmanuWheel ramp team since 2011. He loves the Lord, loves meeting and helping people. Bob looks forward to working with the Board and to using his experience and desire to do God’s work.
Board Member and Team Leader: Les Groom
Les is a retired sales professional who loves the Lord, loves people, and loves exhorting people on to good works and to being their best. Les is a member of Kittiwake Baptist Church and has been building ramps for the past 5 years. He leads the ‘Grey Team’ - a men’s ministry of grey-headed retirees who build ramps during the week. The Grey Team’s ministry is first to encourage one another and to have fun in the process. The Bible says, “the world will know you by your love one to another”. Second, to build the ramps with our skills and with all of our hearts. The Word says to “do all things as unto the Lord” through God’s love being made manifest in us, going out and sharing that love with the world through our words and actions. The Word says for us to have faith, hope and charity (love), and the greatest of these is love. As a Board Member, I look forward to bringing all of my life experiences and heart for this ministry to grow EmannuWheel in exemplifying the love of the Lord through serving our communities and our fellow man.
Board Treasurer and Finance Committee: Ed Martel
Ed is a business owner and a US Air Force veteran with 15 years experience in business management and 20 years experience in information technology. He is married to Ramona Martel. Ed and Ramona are the proud parents of 3 children and grandparents of eleven! They are members of Kittiwake Baptist Church. Ed was born and raised in Massachusetts, and relocated to South Carolina in 2021. Ed was recruited to the "Gray Team"' - the gray-headed retiree ramp team - by Les Groom. "When the opportunity to participate in this ministry arose, I couldn't resist as I enjoy helping others always. When Les informed me of the need for additional board members, I felt that God has blessed me with talents that would be useful and volunteered to assist there as well. I'm looking forward to working alongside the wonderful members of the board and the 'grey team', doing the Lord's work and sharing his message and blessing with those in need."
Board Member Emeritus: Tom Dominick
Tom is a retired Chemical Engineer who spent most of his professional life in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He has worked for Ciba Geigy Corporation, Ethyl Corp, and Albermarle and is a former Air Force Officer. He is a graduate of LSU. He earned his MBA in 1985. His work has included international marketing and sales including assignments in Tokyo and Germany, a period as the developer and implementer of a corporate quality management process reporting to the company president, a stint as a plant manager, and as VP new products, a stint as Albemarle’s regional managing director Asia Pacific operations, and an assignment to Brussels, Belgium as Albemarle’s regional managing director of operations for Europe. He was also on the design team for the B-1 Bomber. In March of 2002 a major brain hemorrhage resulted in left hemiplegia and wheelchair confinement. He and his wife Joan moved to Lexington, South Carolina to be nearer to their youngest son and enjoy beautiful Lake Murray. They are members of the Lexington Church of Christ. "Being a board member for EmmanuWheel gives me the opportunity to participate in the important work the organization does in spite of my physical limitations. Being confined to a wheelchair gives me a hands on perspective of the impact of the projects on the lives of people who are having a rough patch in their existence. In addition it gives me routine business like contact with other results -oriented Christian people; good for me as well as providing needed help to others."
Mt. Horeb UMC Team Leaders: Justin Brown, Andy Gillis, and Joe Pinkham
Team Leader: Cliff Brown
Cliff is married to Carol and they have a son Andrew.Cliff has been working at NCR for 35+ years starting off as a cash register service man in Denver, CO. Later he moved to Columbia supporting UNIX systems and is currently administering customer systems.His hobbies are barbershop singing and trying to tame "The Farm" in Leesville. “Everyday there are people waking up in a hospital bed and being told that they will never walk again.Most of the time it is very unexpected and they were not prepared for that possibility.This is very rewarding for me to be able to build something and help those in need, and to see that person roll up and down the ramp. We give them back some of their freedom.”
Team Leader: Kathleen Rainey
Team Leader: David Rainey
Kathleen Rainey attends Kittiwake Baptist Church. She enjoys making Jeff Kerby's coffee into iced coffee (ask him). Her hobbies are gardening, bird watching and hunting. Kathleen truly enjoys the ministry of Emmanuwheel. She comes to serve and not be served and believes that faith without works is dead faith.
David Rainey is a member of Kittiwake Baptist Church. He likes working with Emmanuwheel because it provides one of many ways to serve and evangelize at the same time and to glorify God while meeting a true need for someone .
Client Intake Coordinator: Mary Turner
Mary is a retired secretary from the Lexington Church of Christ who loves to travel and watch the Clemson Tigers play football. She is married to John and has two adult children Staci & Jonathan. "As a member of the Lexington Church of Christ, I have been aware of Emmanuwheel from its inception and the many people who have been served by this ministry. My husband John and I have helped build ramps with several different groups. It is such a blessing to see the smile on the recipients face when they use the ramp for the first time. To God Be The Glory!"