Good Neighbor Leadership Team
Barbara Bridgewater, President, has been volunteering with Good Neighbor since fall of 2015 and has served on the Board since July 2016. She works as a part-time case manager for Compassion Ministries, a transitional family shelter in Waco, and also teaches English as a Second Language to adults through McLennan Community College. She came to Compassion from Ohio where she was working for a transitional program and emergency shelter for 6 years. Barbara has a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Miami of Ohio University and a Master’s Degree in Education, specializing in Bilingual Education from Ohio University. Barbara, who has two girls, is married to Phillip Bridgewater, a full-time employee of Habitat for Humanity. The whole family is very involved in Hope Fellowship, a neighborhood church ministry in Waco, as well as with Habitat and Compassion.
Craig Clarkson, Treasurer, is the Manager of Operations for Baylor University’s Academy for Teaching and Learning and teaches in Baylor’s Honors College. He came to Waco with his lovely wife and two young sons in 2006 to attend graduate school at Baylor. Craig now has a doctorate in religion and the boys are grown. His wife is as lovely as ever. Prior to his academic career, Craig was an information systems consultant and database developer but a long and winding road has produced a wide array of skills, experiences, and a general figure-it-out-and-make-it-work mentality. Craig served Good Neighbor as a technology consultant in its beginnings. He also helps out around the house by being a general handyman and tackling odd jobs that require the arcane and otherwise trivial skills he possesses. Currently, he serves the Board as Treasurer and overall financial gadfly. Craig loves blues music, pizza, driving and tinkering on his Jeep, and cave time.
Lonni Kehrein, Caretaker, grew up in the Midwest and settled in Chicago with her husband in 1970. Together with other young adults, they built a community outreach center on the West Side where poverty and hopelessness reigned. Forty years of committed relationships and community involvement brought medical, legal, housing, family counseling, elementary education, services for unhoused, job training, and food to that large neighborhood in Chicago’s inner city. At age 40, Lonni earned a Bachelor’s degree in Music & Special Education from Roosevelt University in Chicago, where she taught music in schools and churches.
After losing her husband to colon cancer, Lonni moved with her 12-yr-old son to Waco in 2015 to be near her sister. As a mostly retired person with a background in community development work and education, she taught ESL for several years through McLennan Community College’s Adult Education Program, she drives for UBER and DoorDash, and has been Caretaker at Good Neighbor for the past 17 months. Lonni enjoys helping to maintain the buildings at Good Neighbor, troubleshooting issues she can’t fix herself, beautifying the inside and outside as time and funds are available, and welcoming guests to Good Neighbor House. In her ‘free time’, Lonni often gets on the road with her teardrop camper, visiting friends and seeing our remarkable State & National Parks.
Tyler Mowry is a PhD candidate and part-time lecturer in the Department of Religion at Baylor University. Before attending Baylor, he earned a ThM from Candler School of Theology at Emory University and an MA from Chicago Theological Seminary. Both throughout and prior to his academic journey, Tyler has participated in a number of community development efforts, primarily through education. After earning his BA in Spanish, he worked as an early childhood educator in barrio Santa Fe, Bogotá, Colombia. When he returned to the US, he remained in education, but as a parent liaison and advocate in West Chicago Elementary School District 33. There, he organized parents and teachers in a campaign seeking to expand Bilingual classrooms within predominantly Spanish-speaking communities in the Chicago suburbs. Tyler has also participated in community development via sustainable agriculture, most recently as resident and manager at Oakleaf Mennonite Farm in Atlanta, GA – an urban farm emphasizing in education and food justice advocacy. He is excited to continue participating in community-building work here in Waco through the mission and vision of the Good Neighbor House. Tyler is married to Anne, a biologist, and has two children. He enjoys cooking, making music, and telling stories.
Saraí Muñiz, Secretary, is a recent Baylor University graduate who completed a Master’s in Social Work and a Master of Divinity. Before coming to Waco, Saraí earned her Bachelor of Arts in History at East Texas Baptist University.
A daughter of Immigrants, Saraí was born and raised on the border. She grew up surrounded by immigrants and constantly strived for compassion and love toward our southern neighbors. Her academic and professional experience has served the immigrant community through adult education, legal matters, and case management.
Saraí is passionate about equitable and just policy and research. She loves to play the piano, spend time with her family and friends, and enjoy time outside.
Raquel Williams was born and raised in Waco, TX. She graduated from Gary Job Corporation in San Marcos, Texas, with a certification in Business office Technology and Computer Services Technology. She also received an Administrative Assistant diploma and is currently working towards a bachelor’s in business management.
Raquel previously served as the administrative assistant at STARRY Counseling, which sparked her passion for helping the community. She is currently working at Waco Foundation as the Program Administrative Assistant Coordinator. In addition, she serves on her church’s financial board and pastor committee. As well as a board member of Girls Scouts of Central Texas, and an Ambassador for the Central Texas African American Chambers of Commerce. Raquel loves her city and enjoys engaging with the community.
Laine Scales, Founder, moved to Waco in 1999 to begin work at Baylor University as a social work professor. Laine moved to Sanger Heights in 2003, renovating an old home on Colcord Avenue. She has been engaged in Waco as a member of Hope Fellowship, the Community Race Relations Council, and Prosper Waco Education Steering Committee. In 2016 Laine was awarded the Master Teacher designation, Baylor’s most prestigious teaching award. Laine publishes books and articles on the history of women in higher education and social work. Inspired by this legacy, creating a settlement house that brings together neighborhoods and universities for community improvement has been an important goal for her, so in 2012 she gathered a group of advisors to create what would eventually become Good Neighbor Settlement House and Worship Center, which opened in 2016.