Woman Cradle of Abundance, Inc. – Board of Directors

Elsie McKee

Elsie McKee

Dr. Elsie McKee, the Archibald Alexander Professor of Reformation Studies and the History of Worship at Princeton Theological Seminary, is known as a historian of the 16th century. She has published books and articles on John Calvin, Katharina Schütz Zell, and Reformation worship; she has studied and taught in Europe and Congo as well as the United States, and lectured in various places around the world. She has long been involved with educational and medical projects in Congo, where she was born and reared. These include the Presbyterian University (Kasai), United Front Against Riverblindness, and Education Congo supporting the Université Protestante au Congo (Kinshasa).

Gordon Govens

Gordon Govens

Gordon's background is as a lawyer and business development executive. He was Vice President of the Digital Media Group at Beliefnet. Before that, Gordon served as Vice President of Business Development at Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM). Gordon began his business development career at Real Networks as Senior Director of Business Development Media Programming. Prior to moving to the corporate world, Gordon was a partner at Pantaleoni Govens and Wise. He holds a BA in Philosophy from Swarthmore College, a Juris Doctor from Fordham University School of Law, and his Masters of Divinity and Doctor of Philosophy from Princeton Theological Seminary. He has taught at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, MI., and been a senior research fellow at the Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory University.

Anna de Groot

Anna de Groot

A native of Lincoln, Virginia, Anna relocated to Princeton, New Jersey, to study at Westminster Choir College, where she has now earned two master’s degrees, Masters of Music in Piano Accompanying and Vocal Coaching, and Masters of Music in Piano Pedagogy and Performance. She delights in teaching and making music, and is honored to serve as a board member for Woman Cradle of Abundance. Anna produced several wonderful concerts to support Woman Cradle of Abundance. She now lives in Virginia but continues her regular engagement, especially in communications sending out the newsletters.

Cheryl Ciaranca

While a teacher at Community Middle School, Cheryl founded Hands Across the Water in 2006.  The program began as an email program to connect students from a world of ipods and smart phones with those who paid to use computer time miles from their homes.  Since then, American members have worked tirelessly to raise funds to provide tuition, school fees, supplies, books and clothing for students in Congo. Presently HAW is also managing a micro loan program in Uvira, providing employment in a struggling economy.  Approaching retirement, Cheryl realized that she could not turn her back on her “family” in Congo.  In 2013 Cheryl was led to Dr. Elsie McKee and Woman Cradle of Abundance. Working with the organization gives Cheryl a chance to continue her work helping the brave people of Congo to emerge from the poverty and violence enveloping them. Cheryl is the Community Outreach Coordinator for Woman Cradle of Abundance.

Beverley Williams

Beverley Williams is a librarian by profession, and an active leader in her church and friend to Congo women by choice.  Originally from Jamaica, she has worked at Union Theological Seminary and at Princeton Theological Seminary library for many years and has recently retired as the Collection Management Coordinator for library acquisitions.  Bev heard about Woman Cradle of Abundance from friends at the seminary and became involved as a volunteer in 2014.  Her enthusiasm and her joy in sharing news about FEBA are contagious. The opportunity to get to know Maman Monique and Maman Antoinette was one of the highlights of 2016. Now she combines singing and Woman Cradle of Abundance in great style.


Alicia Jay White

Alicia has more than 25 years of experience as an Information Technology professional at Fortune 50 companies. She enjoys photography and traveling in her spare time.  Alicia has worked with several non-profit organizations, including Junior Achievement, Habitat for Humanity, and multiple Presbyterian church sponsored projects. She learned about the Woman, Cradle of Abundance organization and their work empowering women in the Congo through a church sponsored event and volunteered soon afterwards. Among other things, her particular gifts are focused on the Etsy Shop.

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John McGlaughlin

John is a human services professional with a background in education, serving both in public secondary schools and also in a private school with populations with special needs. He has worked for years in the private sector as an organizational development consultant focusing on promoting a culture of continuous improvement. He holds a Ph.D. in Education and an MA in Organizational Development.

He has recently retired from eleven years as a mathematics instructor with the School District of Philadelphia where taught Algebra and Geometry. He is married to Elsie McKee and with her has visited FEBA’s school in Kinshasa several times and seen the partner sewing school in the Kasai. He has taken an active role in supporting and promoting the goals of Woman Cradle of Abundance through fundraising efforts. In 2017, he assumed the role of treasurer.


Susan Lidstone

Susan Lidstone has been an enthusiastic supporter of Woman, Cradle of Abundance since the beginning. She is an artist with wonderful creative energy, a warm sparkling spirit and big bright smile.  She brings beauty to life wherever she goes: whether it is creating displays for our lovely sewing school products (and doing inventory); imagining & creating artwork for the African Soirées of our sister Congo non-profit UFAR (United Front Against Riverblindness); or demonstrating to Communiversity how to bargain in good African style. She also made the first major gift to launch the Women’s Center campaign in 2013, & has followed the progress generously.



Anjali Dhayagude is a senior at West Windsor Plainsboro High school North. She has been a part of the Hands Across the Water officer board at Community Middle School since 6th grade and has been the President of the club at the High School for the last two years. She has helped organize and carry out a series of fundraisers and events during her 7 years in Hands Across the Water. She has now joined with Woman Cradle of Abundance to continue to work on the various projects that both organizations have in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Contact Us

Elsie McKee - International Liaison and President

Cheryl Ciaranca - Outreach Coordinator and Secretary

John A. McGlaughlin - Treasurer

Other Founding Members of woman, Cradle of ABundance, Inc.