Supporting Education in Pakistan
"Be the change you want to see in the world."
- Mahatma Gandhi
Providing opportunities to the poorest of the poor children in Pakistan's Punjab region through cultivating U.S. support of PEB schools.
About Friends of PEB
Friends of PEB Inc. was formed in 2008. We aim to support and promote the educational purposes of the Presbyterian Education Board of Pakistan and to fund its development in the USA. We do this by:
sustaining a 501(c) 3 organization in the U.S. with administrative services for promotion and donations;
supporting development activities of PEB representatives in the U.S.
cultivating Presbyterian participation through churches, presbyteries, and synods;
cultivating other financial support by way of grants, bequests, corporate resources, and individual donations.
The board of directors meets monthly by conference call and a 3-day retreat is held annually. Download the Friends of PEB brochure (PDF) for more information or to share with your colleagues and friends.
New Executive Director
Laurie Gift Harris
What she brings to Friends of PEB!
A resident of the Portland, OR metropolitan area for the past 35 years, Laurie has a passion for all things children! Professionally, she has been in the nonprofit game for over 3 decades and has worked as a Development Director, Operations Manager, and Executive Director, friend-raising and fundraising her way through her career. She serves on the boards of Fellowship of Christian Athletes Uganda, and locally, Tigard turns the tide, a youth anti-drug coalition. She is passionate about helping small nonprofits succeed and reach their full potential and volunteers whenever time allows.
Married to Chad, they have a blended family consisting of six children and two four-legged children. Laurie's personal passions lie in her faith, football (GO SEAHAWKS!), family, friends, and fitness! In her downtime you will either find her at the gym, walking her german shepherd, or encouraging a friend over a cup of coffee. (all while wearing Seahawks gear of course!)
A lifelong learner, Laurie holds certifications in sports and women's nutrition, cross-cultural ministries, and shepherding women in pain. She is currently working on her trauma intensive yoga certification through Yoga Faith.
Three things you should know about Laurie are that she loves sea salt dark chocolate, a good Malbec, and values relationships above all else.
Current Board of Trustees
Laurie Gift Harris
A resident of the Portland metropolitan area for the past 35 years, Laurie has a passion for all things children! Professionally, she has been in the nonprofit game for over 3 decades and has worked as a Development Director, Operations Manager, and Executive Director, friend-raising and fundraising her way through her career. She serves on the boards of Fellowship of Christian Athletes Uganda, and locally, Tigard turns the tide, a youth anti-drug coalition. She is passionate about helping small nonprofits succeed and reach their full potential and volunteers whenever time allows.
Tim is a retired Presbyterian minister who moved from the east coast to Corvallis OR in 2012. He has been a supporter of PEB's schools and ministries since 2010 when Veeda visited the congregation he was serving and, like that congregation, he was deeply moved by the PEB story.
Stuart serves as pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Tyler, Texas. He has had a long-term interest in global missions and visited the PEB schools in Pakistan in 2014.
Retired former VP and CFO of Multi Service Technology Corp (MSTS). Molly has vast experience in finance and is a member of Second Presbyterian Church of Kansas City, MO where she was an Elder from 2010-2012 and Finance Committee Chair in 2012.
Chief Legal Officer for Advance America, a leading nationwide provider of consumer financial solutions. As a member of the executive leadership, she leads a team of attorneys and compliance staff responsible for managing Advance America’s legal, regulatory compliance, and internal audit needs. Prior to Advance America, Jessica worked at a regional law firm and various government-related positions. Jessica earned both her B.A. (2003) and J.D. (2006) from the University of South Carolina and is admitted to the South Carolina bar. She lives in Greenville, SC and sits on the Board of the Children’s Museum of the Upstate.
Jim Kroh, now retired, is a human resources professional with more than 35 years experience. During his career, he was the senior HR Leader for four large employers having national and international operations. Included in his experience is a period of seven years as President / sole proprietor of a successful regional HR consulting firm.
Jim also carried on a concurrent career in U.S. Army and the PA Army National Guard.
Over the years Jim has been very involved with the nonprofit sector having served on and chairing the boards of numerous community based organizations to include the PA Association of Nonprofit Organizations (PANO). He currently chairs the board of Vision Resources of Central PA.
Jim and wife Ann live in Hershey, PA and are both involved in a variety of leadership roles at Derry Presbyterian Church.
Sam was born in St. Louis, grew up outside Boston, attended Lafayette College in Pennsylvania for a B.S. degree then a Ph.D. from The Ohio State University; both degrees are in Metallurgical Engineering.
He worked in manufacturing all his career, focusing on construction equipment, as well as equipment and accessories for heavy trucks and trailers.
Sam has always been engaged in local community and non-profit activities, including United Way and the local community foundation. In addition to FOPEB, he serves on 3 other boards – two for profit private manufacturing companies and one non-profit, which provides independent and assisted living facilities and skilled nursing care to seniors.
He and his wife Jean belong to Hope Church in Holland, Michigan, a church of the Reformed Church in America, where he has served as both Elder and Deacon. Sam and Jean have 3 married children, 4 grandchildren and, as of February 2020, a 7-month-old black Labrador retriever.
Shelley C. Melewski
Shelley holds a Master of Church Music from Southern Baptist Seminary. She has served as organist and pianist for churches in Oklahoma (where she was born and raised), Florida, Kentucky, Indiana, and Missouri. Also, she has taught many young people to play the piano and has accompanied countless vocal groups. She is now retired from musical pursuits. She enjoys serving Blue Ridge Presbyterian Church in Raytown, Missouri, as deacon, outreach committee member, and office volunteer. Quite recently she participated in the church’s pastoral call committee. She is blessed with two very accomplished adult children and seven grandchildren. With husband Bill, she loves traveling, attending plays and musicals, and volunteering for Raytown Summer Lunch Ministry. She was fortunate to have met Veda Gill at General Assembly in 2008 and shortly afterward began sponsoring students in the Sargodha schools.
Would you like to
make a difference?
Join the Friends
of PEB Board of Directors and put your stamp
on the future of Global Education.