Leadership Team

We are an inspired team. Every member of our FTE leadership team brings unique wisdom and purpose to the organization. Together with our partners, we nurture young leaders as they explore and pursue ministry as a way to change the world.

Marissa Akery works to enhance community participation and cohesion as she seeks to effectively engage doctoral scholars, young adults, and other constituents across FTE’s work.

For nearly a decade, I have had the privilege of nurturing various vibrant Christian communities while empowering and equipping individuals to fulfill their potential in service to God and humanity. I was initially introduced to FTE through the Discernment Lab cohort experience, which enlightened and empowered me to continue leaning into my own sense of vocation. I am excited to support my colleagues in cultivating the next generation of diverse leaders for the church and academy.

Marissa Akery

Dr. Samaria Divine directs FTE’s doctoral initiatives. She oversees efforts to create an engaged community of diverse scholars and supports doctoral students in completing their programs.

As scholars of color continue to embark on doctoral journeys in theology, biblical studies, and related disciplines, they will need support systems to aid them in navigating and completing these programs. FTE has rightfully discerned this need, and consistently seeks to address it. As a previous FTE doctoral fellow, I am delighted that I am now a part of these efforts to offer resources and a community to existing and up-and-coming scholars.

Samaria Divine

Allison Arsenault directs FTE's coordination efforts in partnership with the Lilly Endowment. She oversees the Youth Theology Network and supports efforts centered on theology programs accompanying young adults in discernment. Allison also supports the data and knowledge management needs of FTE.

FTE's work is critical at a time when both young adults and the church are working to define their place and purpose in the world. Guiding students and young adults to engage questions of meaning and purpose is the most life-giving work I’ve ever been a part of. I love coming to work at a place that is actively creating spaces for people of faith to grow and shape their communities and the world.

Allison Arsenault



Chrishaun Hoopes manages FTE's communications strategies and marketing efforts to increase awareness, engagement, and support for FTE’s vision, mission, and programmatic work.

As I approached a career milestone, I began seeking more meaningful ways to combine my passion for marketing with my spiritual calling to help people. I soon discovered an opportunity to promote one of the best brand stories through volunteer work at my church. I learned that there were career opportunities outside of corporate and agency life that allowed me to have a greater purpose. This journey led me to FTE, a brand shaking things up for the next generation of diverse faith leaders. Through my work, I lead communication strategies to reshape how we reach and empower individuals seeking meaningful ways to answer their callings for social good.

Chrishaun Hoopes


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Darlene Hutto leads FTE young adult discernment experiences, dynamic worship, and event facilitation. She served on FTE’s staff for 16 years and brings a wealth of experience to the church, supporting young adults in vocational exploration.

It is exciting to know that my life’s passion and love for ministry serves a critical mass of young adults—that’s worth coming to work. FTE provides me the opportunity to be engaged in conversation and service with the larger church in a way that I could not be if I were in a specific ministry. I work with leaders of congregations and church-related organizations that support young Christian leaders, and in so doing, have the chance to impact young adults who are exploring their call.

Darlene M. Hutto



The President of FTE, Stephen Lewis holds lead responsibility for the strategic direction of FTE.

I do what I do in hopes that my work with good colleagues will have a lasting impact on everyday people and communities across the world. The future is inevitable. Communities of faith, their leaders and the next generation are important catalysts in shaping the future. There is no viable path to the future absent of developing faithful, wise and courageous leaders now. No other national organization is like FTE in shaping the future by developing leaders on behalf of a diverse church and the academy.

Stephen Lewis



Lee Anne McGaha provides administrative support to the FTE President and Vice President of Administration.

I first connected with FTE through my previous position at Quaker Voluntary Service. Working at FTE feels like the natural continuation of that work. I am excited to provide the background support for my colleagues who are holding space for and guiding the next generation of leaders. I'm grateful to be connected to work that is helping to redefine ministry.

Lee Anne McGaha



Christina Repoley directs and leads FTE's programs and initiatives centered on cultivating the next generation of diverse leaders for the church and academy.

I have been connected to FTE for over a decade. As a seminarian, FTE supported my own discernment and connected me to a network that helped me successfully found and grow Quaker Voluntary Service. After pouring my heart and soul into supporting young adults in discernment, ministry and service for nearly 10 years in the Quaker context, I am excited to now be able to support an even wider network of young adults discerning their call in the world and finding out what makes them come alive. FTE is uniquely positioned to be a prophetic voice for both the church and the world, while supporting current and future leadership of a diverse network of young people.

Christina Repoley



Heather B.P. Wallace helps develop and resource an engaged community of young adults, students, and church and institutional leaders through FTE’s online courses and Lilly Endowment coordinated initiatives.

Since 2014, Heather B.P. Wallace has managed grants, resource development, and now FTE’s online learning platform. She also supported FTE's events for young adults, such as the regional discernment retreats, Christian Leadership Forum, and supports partners who work with young adults through learning events and consultations. She was raised as a Lutheran on a small farm in East Tennessee by her Brethren/pacifist father and Peruvian descent mother who both instilled in her a love of storytelling. She holds a Master of Arts in Social Justice and Community Development from the Institute of Pastoral Studies at Loyola University Chicago. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Lenoir-Rhyne University in Communications.

Heather B.P. Wallace