Meet our Staff

Dr. Richard Gardner — FFICM Founder & President 

Richard Gardner

Richard grew up in Philadelphia, PA and received Christ as a 21-year-old through a pastor in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. In 1981, he completed his M.Div through the Reformed Episcopal Seminary, and in 2011 he received his doctorate in missiology from Western Seminary. After marrying his wife Janice in 1985, the two moved to Portland, OR, where they learned about Wycliffe Bible Translators. From 1991-2005, Rich and Janice lived in Nigeria as translators with Wycliffe, working on the Izere New Testament and raising their family. Through his various experiences with Wycliffe, The Seed Company (a division of Wycliffe Bible Translators), and studying for his doctorate, Rich saw a deep need to follow up with new believers as they grew in their Christian faith. Evangelism and follow-up quickly became a passion of Rich, and in September 2013 he took steps to form Firm Foundation In Christ Ministries.

David Moore — Intl. Director of Operations

David grew up in a Christian family in Hillsboro, OR. After high school, he attended Multnomah University in Portland, OR where he got his Bachelor’s Degree in Intercultural Studies. He worked with Wycliffe Bible Translators from 1999 until early 2018.  Most of his work with Wycliffe was in Indonesia where he worked with local church denominations and teams to help facilitate and support the work of Bible translation and seeing partnership with the local church in using local language in ministry thrive. When life transition happened and brought David and his family back to the US in 2017, God opened the door for David to come on board with FFICM and to serve as Director of Operations.

Dara Searcy-Gardner — Intl. Director of Communications

Dara grew up in Jos, Nigeria. She moved to the US when she was eighteen to go to college for vocal performance, and after completing her BMus, went on to complete a masters in theology at Houghton College. She focused her study on the intersection between personal faith, theology, and culture. After graduating, she worked in a Methodist church in Forest Grove, Oregon as Ministry Associate. In this position she led the discipleship program, the youth group, and planned outreach events. While working at the church, she also worked with Rich as he moved from doctoral research to developing material, doing trainings and ultimately forming FFICM. Helping to develop materials and interviewing people to tell their stories intersected powerfully with Dara’s passion for people to have intimate, lasting relationships with Jesus, and her love for and loyalty to people who risk everything to reach out to others for the gospel. Eventually she felt called to join the ministry, and currently serves as International Director of Communications.

Nicole Miller — Intl. Communications Coordinator

Nicole grew up in a supportive Christian family in Reno, NV. After high school, she attended a nine-month discipleship program called the Joshua Wilderness Institute, where she was immersed in community living while studying the Bible and theology. She did her undergrad studies at Biola University in Southern California, receiving a Bachelors in Creative Writing with a minor in Biblical Studies. Nicole dreamt of storytelling from a young age, but discovered the passion to use her writing skills for positive change when she moved to San Francisco to intern for Greenpeace USA. Since then she has worked for a wide range of nonprofits, crafting stories for a cause. Nicole moved to Portland in 2016 for a communications fellowship, continuing to use her experience in social media, blogging, editing, and design. She learned about FFICM through a friendship with Rich’s son, and became connected to the organization after meeting Rich and Dara.

Peter Wash — Nigeria National Director

Peter has a BA in Missions and Evangelism, as well as a National Certificate of Education. He worked with the Great Commission Movement with the Jesus Film team from 1996-2001, and with CREI ministries from 2003-2016 as a trainer and supervisor. He joined Firm Foundation In Christ Ministries as Nigeria Coordinator in May of 2016. Peter loves training people and raising up disciples who can call others to Christ and establish them in their faith. He is filled with hope by seeing people changed by practicing what he teaches in Firm Foundation In Christ Ministries trainings. Many have given their lives to Christ as a result of his sharing his faith, and it gives him great joy! He is currently working on his Master’s Degree and is helping the ministry to grow and expand in Nigeria, in partnership with many different organizations and churches.

Eskinder Alemayehu — Ethiopia National Director

Eskinder grew up in a conservative Ethiopian Orthodox Church family, and came to know Christ in his teenage years through discussions with a school friend and has been serving the Lord in ministry ever since.

He feels called to minister to the unreached people groups in Ethiopia through evangelistic ministry. He attended Bible college, and was appointed Evangelist and Church Ministry Coordinator of his local church after graduation. After working for seven years with the local church, Eskinder accepted the call to serve at a national level–becoming a coordinator of the church planters training program in the missions department. He coordinated over a hundred and twenty-five training centers of the church planters all over Ethiopia, in two different languages. Eskinder has produced training materials for church leaders, pastors, evangelists, and ministers to evangelize, equip, disciple, and make leaders in the process of church planting.

Eskinder assisted FFICM in translating training material from English to Amharic, and was deeply compelled by the organization’s mission and ministry. Since then he has served alongside FFICM, equipping many people to evangelize, follow-up and train new believers in Ethiopia, Africa, and all over the world.

Since June 2019 he has been serving as the FFICM National Director for Ethiopia through the partnership that FFICM has with the Kale Heywet church in Ethiopia.  Click here to make a donation preferenced toward the FFICM ministry of Eskinder.

Richard GardnerMeet our Staff