Meet Our Board of Directors

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Kisongo Mbeleulu, Chief Executive Officer

Pastor Kisongo Mbeleulu has had a heart for the poor of Congo for 40 years. After graduating from seminary in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), he served 10 years as a chaplain pastor for university students. He served for 4 years as coordinator of the peacemaking program in the Great Lakes region related to the Rwandan genocide of 1994.

In the USA, though many who escape the poverty zone of the DRC would focus on thriving in their new life in the land of plenty, Kisongo’s calling to Congo has not diminished but has been refined. He chose to study what makes communities flourish and earned a Masters degree in International development in 2015. In 2010 Kisongo began ALERT and regular ministry trips to DRC.

Kisongo has a passion to see the Congolese church grasp the revolutionary power of the Gospel as their ‘wisdom template’ for all aspects of life.

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Gavin Knowles, Board Chair​

Congolese community coordinator, Head of security at North Hennepin Community College, husband to Jennifer Kisongo and father of 2 amazing young men. He has a passion for supporting the development of African leaders both in Congo and here in the US.

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Kristy White, Chief Operating Officer

Kristy White was born in Nigeria and raised in Kenya as a missionary kid until the age of ten. After returning to the states and finishing a Bachelors of Arts at Bethel University in Community Health she joined the Peace Corps and continued her love of learning languages and caring for others. In 2001 she began as a volunteer supporting Global Horizons with administrative tasks. In 2002 she began part time and grew with the organization from administrative assistant to finally the Program Director after 12 years of service. Also during this time she married a wonderful man and became a mom of 4 very different and vibrant daughters. In 2013 she took her whole family to see Daystar University in Kenya and share her love of Africa with her family.

Currently she supports a team of insurance agents at a local State Farm office in Minnetonka and is discovering a love of gardening.

Pastor Kisongo's Story

Kisongo Mbeleulu has a vision for Congo. But that vision has not been birthed easily. In August 1998, Kisongo was in the U.S. when he received a call from his family saying, ‘Don’t return home Papa… There are people here who are trying to kill you!’

This was at the beginning of the Second Congo War, the deadliest conflict worldwide since World War II. These tumultuous events marked the beginning of a whole new season of Kisongo’s life— evolving his role from being a local pastor and peacemaker in Congo, to being a refugee but also...a ‘catalyst for change from afar’ —7000 miles away.

After seminary Kisongo served 10 years as a chaplain pastor for university students and then four years as coordinator of a peacemaking program in the Great Lakes region related to the genocide of 1994 that happened in Rwanda. It was these roles that thrust Kisongo into a position of high visibility in the region and eventually endangered his life at the uprising of the second Congo War in 1998.

Though many who escape the poverty zone of the DRC would focus on thriving in their new life in the land of plenty, Kisongo’s calling to Congo has not diminished but has only been refined sharper as he has used his time in the U.S. to be a relentless student of what makes communities and nations flourish. Studying history, biblical theology, economic development and leadership, along with earning a M.A. in international development he has developed a passion to see the Congolese church grasp the revolutionary power of seeing the Bible as a ‘wisdom template’ for all of life.  

In 2010 Kisongo founded the organization ALERT, (African Leadership Empowerment, Reconciliation and Transformation) ALERT’S vision is “to see local churches of Eastern Congo ignite spiritual and economic transformation across Congo and beyond.”

Toward this end, ALERT has thus far sponsored 10 conferences with distinguished guest speakers representing agriculture, business, education, peacemaking and ministry. It has also created a small women’s sewing enterprise, and hopes to stimulate many businesses as well as see a permanent training center established for the Eastern Congo region. 

Kisongo has gained the attention of local and government leaders who desire more exposure to the nature of the teaching he brings.

Kisongo currently lives in Minneapolis with his wife Jeanne and eight children. He also serves as an Elder at New City of Nations Church- a multiethnic church in the Twin Cities area.