Susie Jennings, Founder and President
Susie joined First Baptist Church Dallas in 1982, within months of arriving in the United States from her home in the Philippines. She received invaluable Biblical knowledge under the teaching of the legendary Dr. W.A. Criswell, one of the godliest men she has known. She taught preschoolers for twenty (20) years at her church. Desiring to serve God and her community after the tragic death of her husband, God called Susie to give blankets to the homeless in downtown Dallas in November 1993. The homeless called her, “The Blanket Lady.” That modest beginning was the genesis of Operation Care International (OCI), which has grown to encompass multiple ministries and major events each year in Dallas, Texas as well as missions to the homeless and destitute children in nations around the world. A registered nurse by profession since 1978, in obedience to God’s calling Susie stepped out in faith and resigned from a supervisory position at Baylor University Medical Center Dallas in January 2011; thus becoming a full time missionary to those in need. Susie continues to lead OCI with the help of a board of directors and a multitude of volunteers. Her guiding principle for the vision of OCI is in Romans 8:28, "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose." Susie’s life Bible verse is “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
John Davis, Chairman and Vice President
John is a member of the First Baptist Church Dallas and serves on the missions committee with the Acts 2:42 Sunday school class. In 2009, God inspired John to serve the homeless and his search led him to Operation Care. John first served as a volunteer for Christmas Gift 2009 event and as a coordinator for the partnership with Feed the Children as truckloads of goods arrived in Dallas (June 18, 2010) in an event entitled “Americans Feeding Americans” . John became an Operation Care board member in August 2010. Operation Care is not John’s first nonprofit experience, he has previously served as a board member and webmaster for nine (9) years with the Dallas Songwriters Association. As a certified public accountant, John has been employed with Thomson Reuters for twenty (20) years, where he's tasked with developing tax software for charitable trusts and nonprofit organizations. John and Sherrie have been married for thirty-five (36) years and have three children. His favorite life Bible verse is “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever.” (Isaiah 40:8).
Cecille Lijauco, Secretary
Cecille is a member of Lovers Lane United Methodist in Dallas in addition to her role as board member of the contemporary worship, Cecille serves other church ministries such as outreach and finance. Cecille became involved with Operation Care in 1999 when the ministry’s mission field was the streets of downtown Dallas distributing the Gospel of Christ Jesus and new blankets. For a season, she was not active with Operation Care until God urged her to volunteer for the Christmas Gift 2009 event. Cecille became a board member in July 2010 and without reservation, she joined a seven-member team assigned to go to the slums of Nairobi, Kenya. She has served with other ministries and medical missions to her home country, the Philippines, lately Taiwan and China with Operation Care. As a nurse, she is a director for health care improvement and care coordination at Baylor Heart and Vascular Hospital in Dallas. Cecille and Rick have been married for twenty-seven (27) years and have two children. Her life Bible verse is Isaiah 43:1, “But now, thus says the LORD,…‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine!’”
Martha Batts, Treasurer
Martha is a member of First Baptist Church Dallas where she served in the Preschool Ministry for over 10 years and was on the Preschool staff for over eight years where she served as Preschool Minister. She also served as a volunteer for the Downtown Pregnancy Center for three years and served on the Board of the Heidi Group. Martha has been involved with Operation Care as a volunteer for more than 10 years. For the past two years Martha has been the Chair for the Children’s area for the Christmas Event. She recently joined the Board where she hopes to broaden her ministry to the homeless and under-privileged. Currently Martha is the Director of Human Resources at Criswell College. She also has the responsibility of Accounts Payable for the college. She is married to Ron Batts and they have two children, Chandler who attends Texas A&M and Kathryn who attends Lake Highlands High School. One of Martha’s favorite Bible verses is Proverbs 3:5-6 – “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on you own understanding. In all you ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.”
Gary Daniels, Marketing and Public Relations
Gary is a member of Valley Creek Church in Flower Mound and volunteers for a variety of outreach ministry opportunities. Gary was first involved as volunteer distributing shoes for the Christmas Gift 2009. As Gary recalls, he was astonished by the scope of the event and was touched by the compassion shown to the homeless that were served. He subsequently volunteered as a co-coordinator for shoe distribution for Christmas Gift 2010. Gary has also served with other ministries and has participated in medical and service missions in Africa, Indonesia, China, the Philippines and Honduras. Gary became a board member in May 2011. He brings thirty (30) years of creative marketing and brand management experience with large corporations. Gary and Kim have been married twenty-eight (28) years and have two children. His favorite Bible verse is Joshua 1:9, “...Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Don Perritt, Founding Member and Chairman Emeritus
Don is a member of Valley Creek Church in Flower Mound and has volunteered for a variety of outreach ministry opportunities including the AWANA program. Don, a founding member of Operation Care, has been involved in a variety of roles since December 1999. Don and Susie became the first board members on an international mission trip, the Philippines 2008. His latest assignment was board chairman from June 2009 to June 2011. A memory that reminds Don of God’s mercy stems from May 1992 because he and his young family were very close to becoming homeless themselves. Being a veteran of the United States Navy, Don is also sympathetic to the plight of homeless veterans. Accepting Jesus Christ as his savior was a slow process for Don, but ultimately the Bible verse that brought conviction to his hardened heart was Philippians 2:10-11: “…that in the name of Jesus every knee should bow in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Don and Annie have been married for twenty-five (25) years and have four children.
Ron Batts, Chairman Emeritus
Ron is a member of the First Baptist Church Dallas and has served a number of nonprofit organizations as a board member, including his role of board chairman of Operation Care from November 2005 to June 2009. Ron and Susie developed the vision to hold the “largest Christmas party for Jesus” in December of each year; this vision became a reality in December 18, 2004. Ron has more than thirty (30) years of executive leadership experience that enables him to bring strategic thinking, problem-solving and growth planning expertise to Operation Care. Ron is President and CEO of Christian Community Action in Lewisville, Texas. Ron’s former corporate positions include; Things Remembered as senior vice president of sales and store operations, Levi's Dockers as president of outlet stores, Haggar Clothing as senior vice president of retail, and Charming Charlie as senior vice president of store operations. Ron and Martha have two children, Chandler attends Texas A & M in the fall and Kathryn freshman in Lake Highlands High School. His favorite Bible verse is 1 Samuel 16:7, “for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”