Bart Smelley – Founder

Bart Smelley
Bart is a lifelong entrepreneur and has been blessed with the gifts to make ideas come to life. During his corporate career, he started numerous companies in a wide variety of business sectors. Over the years he has received several honors for his coaching, business success, and community service. Bart has traveled extensively to third world countries and is now devoting his life to creating lasting, meaningful change in the lives of people living in abject poverty. He and his wife Sissi are the very proud parents of three children (all who happened to have earned college athletic scholarships). Bart and Sissi live in Northport, Alabama and are "Mia and Papa" to their four precious grandchildren.

Don Johnson – Director of Sales & Partnerships

Don Johnson
Don comes to Filter of Hope with a wide background that has prepared him to work with our various types of partners. He spent 25 years working on a local church staff, 10 years at Fortune 1000 company as a regional sales manager and several years working as business consultant. Don has developed the unique skills required to work with churches, mission organizations and individuals of all types. He directs the sales efforts at Filter of Hope, manages all our partner relations and leads our Intern Program. Don lives in Northport, Alabama with his wife Christy.

Davis Looney – Director of Campus Partnerships

Davis Looney
Davis was born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee where he was blessed with wonderful parents and a great family. He graduated from the University of Alabama, where as a student, he became a Christian. While there, Davis became very involved in Greek ministry through Cru. It was one of the most formative seasons of his life. Upon graduating, he spent a year in Uganda before returning to lead a college ministry in Alabama for two years. Davis now gets to combine his passion for missions with his heart for college students by leading Campus Partnerships and Development for Filter of Hope.

Kate Waddell – Office Administration

Kate Waddell
Kate graduated from the University of Alabama in 2010. After graduating, she spent a year doing mission work in Durban, South Africa. She has served with Cru at the University of Alabama for the past 5 years. Her experiences serving with Cru internationally gave her a greater heart for the world and opened her eyes to the need for the Gospel both locally and around the world. Kate has great administrative and leadership skills, which are greatly needed for the rapid growth of Filter of Hope. She is an avid tennis player, loves to travel and has a passion for cooking. Kate’s husband Brant works in management at Mercedes Benz USA and they live in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

Meghan Ryan – Campaign Coordinator & Social Media Director

Meghan Ryan
Meghan graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in English, and before leaving Gainesville she spent a year working for Cru discipling college girls. She is passionate about communicating people’s stories and building deep relationships. Through her role with campaigns and social marketing, she gets to tell the best stories and meet the best people. Meghan’s favorite things are good books, long runs and pizza. Born and raised in the Florida Panhandle on the world’s most beautiful beaches, she loves everything about being on the water. So if she’s not at the beach, she’s probably wishing she was.

Evan Isbill – Campaign Logistics Coordinator

Evan Isbill
Evan is the logistics coordinator, as well as one of the campaign coordinators for Filter of Hope. He graduated from Auburn University in 2015 with a degree in Communication and a minor in Business. After graduation Evan spent two years with working with college students with Cru in Auburn, Alabama and East Asia. Over these two years he developed a love of details and a passion for developing young leaders. He is excited to combine these two loves through his work with Filter of Hope. Evan is from a small southern town where his big family indoctrinated him with a love of good people and good food. These two loves have followed him into his 20s.

Meredith Simmons – Campaign Coordinator

Meredith Simmons
Meredith was born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama. She is the oldest of three, with two younger brothers. She attended the University of Alabama and graduated in 2014. After becoming a Christian in college through Cru, she worked for Cru at The University of Alabama for three years. She has a passion for seeing people all over the world come to know Christ. Serving most of her time overseas in Asia, Meredith is so excited to experience taking the Gospel and clean water to a different part of the world! Meredith loves cooking, spending time outdoors, and may or may not have been to more Carrie Underwood concerts than you could count on four hands. Meredith currently lives in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

Carlie Chapman – Campaign Coordinator

Carlie Chapman
Carlie was born and raised in Huntsville, AL. She went to the University of Alabama and graduated in 2016 with a degree in Communicative Disorders. She was involved with Cru throughout college and worked as for them as an intern at Alabama for a year. Carlie has a heart for the world and has spent time doing missions work in Africa and Asia. She is excited to be working for Filter of Hope and to continue to reach the world with the hope of the gospel. When she’s not working she loves to bake and be outside with her puppy George.

Gabriel Polanco – Dominican Republic Country Director

Gabriel Polanco
Gabriel was born and raised in La Vega, Dominican Republic. Gabriel was introduced to a relationship with Jesus through a local church and has never turned back.  Gabriel is finishing up his college degree with a focus on Modern Languages and his desire is to share the Gospel of Jesus in multiple languages. He would say his prized position is his Bible.  Gabriel directs ministry programs in La Vega, leads and trains church leaders in the communities, and also leads our prison ministries in La Vega and Moca.

Andrea Geisinger – El Salvador Country Director

Andrea Geisinger
Andrea was born and raised in El Salvador. Before becoming on staff with Filter of Hope, she worked as the Missions Coordinator for La Red Ministries serving the marginalized beach communities and coordinating development projects in partnership with US churches and nonprofits. Working together with her husband Josh, she desires to see transformation in her country by meeting physical needs and introducing people to the love of Jesus Christ.  She also enjoys traveling, surfing and going on adventures with family and friends.

Josh Geisinger – El Salvador Country Director

Josh Geisinger
Josh grew up in San Diego, California.  Before working for Filter of Hope, he served as the director of a community development ministry focused on Hispanic immigrant families in Orange County, CA.  He recently moved to El Salvador to join his wife Andrea and they began to work in the marginalized coastal communities of her native country.  Josh and Andrea work together to build relationships with local leaders, distribute water filters to those in need, and share the Gospel with families who do not know Him.  Josh enjoys travel, trekking, and time with his family and friends.

Dr. Bony Barrineau – Board Member and Medical Director

Dr. Bony Barrineau
Born and raised in the small country town of Demopolis, Alabama. Bony, which is his given name, dreamed of becoming a doctor. His dream became reality as he attended medical school at the University of Alabama and University of Alabama at Birmingham and began his practice in 1981. Dr. Bony Barrineau retired from orthopedic surgery in 2009 and is currently the Director of Rehabilitation for Northport Health Services. He has been involved in ministry projects and missions for the past 10 years and has participated in mission trips all around the world. His education and passion for micro-biology, health and serving the poor makes him a valuable part of the Filter of Hope team. Dr. Bony Barrineau also teaches Social Entrepreneurship at the University of Alabama. Bony resides in Northport, Alabama with his wife of 31 years, Robbie and has four children.

Steve Hillis – Board Member

Steve Hillis
Steve has over 32 years experience in developing sales organizations by recruiting, training and managing sales teams. Steve is an expert in business turn-around, strategic planning, sales force structure and national account programs. He is currently a professional sales consultant and coach for Southwestern Consulting. Steve is committed to using his God given talents to do mission work. In his home town of Smyrna, GA., he is the leader of missions to Africa and Italy for Vinings Church and Crossroads Church. Because of his strong desire to give back, Steve joined the Filter of Hope team to provide leadership and training to enable Filter of Hope to accomplish its mission. He is passionate about getting as many filters as possible into the hands of people around the world in desperate need of clean water as quickly as possible. Steve resides in Smyrna, GA. with his wife, Ann Gladden Hillis. He and Ann have 3 sons and 2 beautiful grandchildren.

Todd Prevost – Board Member

Todd Prevost

Todd Prevost is a native of Nashville, graduated from Montgomery Bell Academy, and attended Furman University on a football scholarship. He currently works in the Commercial Real Estate community in Nashville. Supporting 3rd world communities first grabbed his attention while serving on mission trips to Africa in 2003 and 2006. A visit to one of the world’s largest slums, located outside of Nairobi, Kenya, illustrated the tremendous financial efficiencies that can exist when capital is partnered with the right organization. Filter of Hope is an example of the right organization. Shortly after becoming acquainted with Filter of Hope and seeing their eternal and life changing impact first hand, partnering with them became a no brainer. Being a part of a cause greater than self and improving thousands of lives annually anchors Todd’s connection with Filter of Hope. 

Vicky Patterson – Board Member Emeritus

Vicky Patterson
Vicky worked in the corporate world for over 20 years. Most of that time was with a large employee benefit and consulting firm. Late in life, she went back to school and got her masters in Economics. She worked at the Center for Economic Education at Middle Tennessee State and then went on to teach micro and macro Economics at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. Vicky has always believed in giving back but after traveling to Haiti and the Dominican Republic on a mission trip, she was hooked. She began as a volunteer using her time and talents to help direct the financial side of the non-profit organization. Vicky now serves as the Board Chairman and is very involved with the day-to-day operations of Filter of Hope. She resides in Panama City Beach, Florida and looks forward to visits from her family and friends. She loves living where other people go on vacation!

Ron Buck – Board Advisor

Ron Buck
Ron Buck was the son of a sharecropper in Montgomery County Tennessee and lived and worked on the farm until he moved to Nashville in 1965.  He served in the US Navy until 1973 after which he enrolled at Austin Peay State University.  Ron graduated with a degree in Agri-Business and Marketing.  He worked for a property management firm Harvey Freemen and Sons and developed a passion for real estate.  After earning his CPM certification, Ron formed his own company Ronald D. Buck Inc. and specialized in real estate acquisitions and rehabilitation of underperforming assets.  God has richly blessed Ron as he used his God given skills and work ethic to close a large number of very successful real estate deals throughout the years.  Ron took his first mission trip in 1987 to Zimbabwe and developed a huge heart for those living in poverty. Ron’s strong faith and desire to use his blessings to serve others led him to help create a mission organization in Zambia Africa called Mufutuli Ministries which consists of an orphanage, school and farm.  Ron has been active in Nashville prison ministry and enjoys golf and traveling with friends and family.  He currently lives with his precious wife of 49 years, Mary and their son EJ on a beautiful farm in Franklin Tennessee which borders the Harpeth River.  They attend Christ Presbyterian Church in Nashville.
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