A woman who’s worked in children's welfare and rights in various countries is the new senior director of global programs at a faith-based nonprofit.
Bethany Christian Services in Grand Rapids said this week that it has appointed Kristi Gleason to the role.
Gleason will be responsible for overseeing Bethany’s portfolio of international programs, which operate in 16 countries.
Those programs include family preservation, domestic and inter-country adoption and family based care.
“Kristi has vast international experience working with children, and she will serve Bethany well in her new position,” said Brian DeVos, SVP of child welfare and family services, Bethany Christian Services.
“Having seen first-hand the vulnerabilities facing children growing up in orphanages and on the streets in the developing world, I know how important it is for children to grow up in a loving family,” Gleason said. “Bethany global provides high quality, family strengthening and foster care services around the world, and I am excited to be a part of this important work.”
Bethany Christian Services said Gleason has a range of experience: international program development, project management, grant writing, community development, foster care and working with vulnerable children.
Most recently, Gleason worked as an international services manager with Bethany.
A licensed master social worker and a graduate of Grand Valley State University, Gleason has worked in Albania, China, Tibet, Haiti and the U.S.
As a Fulbright Fellow, she researched the impacts of domestic violence on family systems in eastern Europe.