Working together in this way we can solve many problems that now exist in literature distribution. Furthermore, we will be able to provide sound Christian literature that people can afford.
– Benjamin Boateng, Managing Director, Challenge Enterprises Ghana
Board & Staff
Our staff and board of directors bring extensive global business, mission, and Africa experience and publishing expertise together in a unique combination to meet the literature needs of African Christians.
Matthew Elliott, President of Oasis International, has experience in both theology (Ph.D. in New Testament) and administration. He has guided Oasis' growth over the last five years. With this background, he is able to serve in guiding the organization and being a liaison to nationals, publishers, and ministries. Elliott explains, "It has been a privilege to see how God has blessed the ministry of Oasis over the last ten years. In step with the growing mission and vision of Oasis, I have been challenged as I have studied the needs of Africa and how they can be met. I am convinced that the multinational approach of Oasis to literature distribution can have a significant and lasting impact on the church in Africa."
After graduating from Cedarville University with a degree in Management and Marketing, Keith worked for over seven years with the U.S. Treasury Department learning about computer systems and networks. Believing he was called to Kingdom work, he started serving with Awana Clubs International where he worked in leadership roles in IT, business development, operations, and strategic international planning. Keith's nine years at Awana instilled a passion for international ministry and especially, Africa.
From there, Keith began to learn publishing at Moody Publishers, serving as a marketing manager for books for church leaders where he served for over three years. Keith considers it a great blessing to add his skills, experience and passion to his role as Director of African Operations with Oasis.
Keith is currently serving as Senior Elder at his church and enjoys Christian music, WWII history and rooting for all the Philadelphia sports teams.
In 2011, Bethany graduated from Wheaton College (IL) with a B.A. in International Relations. After a circuit in the corporate marketing world, Bethany was eager to find a way to combine her creative talent with her love for international ministry. With five years of experience in communications freelancing under her belt, Bethany utilizes a unique combination of design expertise, marketing savvy, and overseas ministry experience in her role as the Director of Communications. She is deeply passionate about serving the needs of the African church and is honored to work alongside the Oasis team both stateside and in Africa.
Janice Muchai has been involved in leadership training and development in Africa for over 12 years. She has worked with International Christian Ministries as Leadership Training Manager, More than A Mile Deep (Global) as General Manager, and Church Mission Society Africa. Her role was in the development of and leadership training through church-based, accredited, contextual training tools for African leaders. She has been a consultant with the Kenya Government in a Strategic Leadership Initiative for three years. Before this, Janice worked in management positions in the commercial sector in Kenya for 10 years. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Nairobi and an MA, Organizational Leadership, from the International Leadership University, Nairobi. She is currently pursuing further studies at Cornell University, USA.
After almost 15 years serving in Africa as the Managing Director of Oasis Distributions Ltd. in Nigeria, Craig Ewoldt has retuned to the States to be with his family and grandchildren. He still serves Oasis as a special consultant in training and development. Craig was formally Vice President of Distribution for Spring Arbor Distributors where he managed the distribution system of the market leader. He brings expertise and experience in management, sales, retailing, and distribution in both a western and African context. He is an excellent leader and teacher.
It has been Craig Ewoldt's lifelong passion to serve Christ and His church through the ministry of Christian books and Bibles. He has had the opportunity to train and mentor others to assume leadership in diverse areas, including bookstore management, distribution, purchasing, and information services. In serving Christian booksellers in Nigeria, there is a unique convergence of Ewoldt's passion and the application of skills he has learned and practiced over 26 years.
Edward Elliott volunteers his time as Chairman of the Board of Oasis International and brings 25 years of experience in the international Christian literature marketplace. This includes being responsible for international sales at Tyndale House Publishers, founding Oasis International, and directing the work of Evangelical Literature Oversees. In addition, Elliott brings managerial and administrative experience having owned his own business for over 20 years. He has also served on the boards of National Religious Broadcasters, the Tyndale Foundation, Dreams Indeed, and the Moody Alumni Association.
Tim Martins is Chairman & CEO of Barbour Publishing, the leading publisher of promotionally priced inspirational products. Martins joined the Barbour team in 1987, and acquired the company in June of 2000. Prior to that, he served as Communications Director for a small non-profit organization ministering to physically disabled youth and adults. Martins is a graduate of the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, Illinois.
Steve Nelson is the Director for Strategic Initiatives at Opportunity International, a Christian development organization. He oversees prospect research and proposal/report writing. Steve directs Opportunity International's $25 million Lending Hope to Africa Campaign and is responsible to raise additional funds for about 10 other projects. His fundraising role supports a team of 15 major gift officers around the country. He is married to Sharon and has four young kids. He teaches Sunday School and leads AWANA at Wheaton Bible Church in Wheaton, Illinois.
Steve Potratz is the CEO and President of Parable Christian Stores, a digital advertising and Christian store ministry. He actively serves as an Elder at Grace Church San Luis Obispo, California, and has served on many ministry boards, including Christian Radio corporation, Logos Broadcasting. He served many years on the advisory council for Multnomah Publishers. Steve has been married to his wife, Laurie, for 41 years, and they have 2 children, and 4 grandchildren.
Dr. Tienou is Senior Vice President of Education, Dean of Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, and professor of theology of mission at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois. He has been at Trinity since 1997. Prior to coming to Trinity, Dr. Tienou served as president and dean of the Faculte de Theologie Evangelique de l'Alliance in Abidjan, Cote Ivoire West Africa, and taught for nine years at Alliance Theological Seminary in Nyack, New York. He was the founding director and professor of the Maranatha Institute in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso, in addition to being a pastor in the Central Church of the Christian Alliance Church.
Dr. Tienou's areas of expertise include missions, theology, and the church in Africa. He has been a member of the African Studies Association since 1991 and the OMSC Study Group on Mission Issues since 1985. Dr. Tienou served as the senior mission scholar in residence at Overseas Ministries Study Center in New Haven, Connecticut and research fellow at Yale Divinity School.
Engineer Chikan is the chairman and former director of Jos Municipal Development Board. He is the author of several books, a nationally recognized seminar leader on wealth creation, a financial counselor and life coach. He is a long time customer and supporter of Oasis Distributions in Nigeria. He is a committed Christian and member of the Church of Christ in Nigeria (COCIN).
Jeff Wright is Chief Executive Officer of Urban Ministries Inc (UMI), the largest African American Christian publishing and media company. The firm's magazines, books, movies, and other products have been promoted nationally for over forty years. UMI serves over 50,000 church customers and reaches millions of consumers in its target market. Jeff spent fifteen year in new business development and mergers and acquisitions roles with Fortune 50 companies like Bristol Myers Squibb and Johnson & Johnson before joining UMI in 1994. Jeff serves on several industry and non-profit board of directors. He is also an attorney, a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center and has an M.B.A. in finance from Columbia University. Jeff is married to Lakita Garth and has four children.
Virginia Elliott co-founded Oak Foundation/Oasis International along with her husband, Edward. Having grown up in Detroit in a family committed to Christian missions, her vision for international Christian publishing grew out of her husband's work at Tyndale House Publishers, international travel and living in England. Mrs. Elliott is a graduate of the Moody Bible Institute (Chicago). In addition to the obligations required of the spouse of a small business owner, Elliott has focused her energies on being a mother, grandmother, and homemaker.