Bethany started at First Choice in 2014 as Advancement Director, and became the Executive Director in January 2017. She graduated from Auburn in 2007 with a degree in journalism and went on to work at the pregnancy center there doing marketing and development. Before moving to Montgomery, Bethany and her husband Dave took two years off from work to explore the world and travel by bicycle. Bethany is a mom to three young children, Kirby, Hannah and Davis. She says she loves the opportunity she has to know that the work she does every day is making a real, positive difference in the lives of others. She also loves getting to know the people who support this ministry and make our work possible.
Melinda has worked at First Choice since 1986. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s in counselor education, both from Western Illinois University. As our operations director, Melinda keeps our day-to-day operations running smoothly and efficiently. She has been married to her husband, Don, for 20 years. Melinda says she loves knowing that her “behind-the-scenes” work at our center supports others in presenting God’s love and truth to women and men facing unplanned pregnancies as well as those suffering from the emotional, spiritual, and physical effects of past abortions.
Rachel started as our development coordinator in February of 2020. Rachel is a Montgomery native and has completed her master’s degree in Christian education from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. She previously graduated from Auburn University in 2008 in public relations. Rachel is married to Dale and they stay busy raising two young boys and teaching in their church. Rachel assists with fundraising efforts, grant writing, and overall public relations for First Choice. She is most excited about First Choice’s vision of leading others to pro-abundant life, both in giving support and medical care to clients, and also in providing opportunities for others to be involved with this unique ministry.
Client Care Staff
Laura Williams joined our staff in 2017, shortly after completing her master’s in counseling from Faulkner University. As Client Services Director, she oversees all client care programs and trains all our volunteer client advocates and receptionists. She is originally from Montgomery, and married her husband, Cory, in October 2017. They both work with the youth at their church home, First Assembly Montgomery. Laura says she enjoys being able to minister to women and men in need of support and encouragement in their pregnancy. “Our goal is for our center to be a safe haven where people can come and receive what they need physically, emotionally and spiritually,” she says. “It is so rewarding to see our clients feel valued, understood, and loved.”
Jenna started volunteering here in 2012 when she and her husband, Clint, moved to Montgomery. She came on staff in 2013 to manage our parenting education program, Earn While You Learn. Jenna recently completed a double bachelor’s degree from Liberty University in Christian counseling and crisis counseling. She and Clint have two sons, Jake and Tyler. Jenna says she loves the opportunity she has at First Choice to counsel and encourage the moms we serve. ”I love seeing the girls who are broken and beat down leave here with joy and a smile on their face. I love seeing a mom who thinks she is incapable of being a good mother have her baby and be the best mother possible.”
Craig Shore started working at First Choice in June 2019 as our Fathers First Coordinator. In this role, he is spearheading our growing ministry to dads. We believe it is essential to educate and equip fathers to be engaged and effective in their role in their children’s lives. Craig has a desire to minister to all the expectant fathers who come through our doors at First Choice. “As a father and foster parent of three children, I know the importance of being present and involved as a father with my family,” he said. “I also know the suffering of children in the foster care system and the consistent issue in the system (and our nation) of fatherlessness. My passion for ministering to dads at First Choice is rooted in this desire on spreading an earthly example of fatherhood that emulates the consistent fatherly love of our Heavenly Father.”
Dr. Waddell is a graduate of medical school at Texas Tech University and completed her residency at The Ohio State University. Dr. Waddell began practicing with Montgomery Women’s Health Associates in 2016. She became our medical director in 2019, and in this role she has oversight of all clinic operations at the Center. We are thankful for the professional expertise she brings, as well as a genuine desire to serve and empower women to make a decision for life.
Ashley started as our nurse manager in 2018. Ashley is from Montgomery originally, and graduated from nursing school at AUM in 2009. She and her husband Patrick have three girls. As nurse manager, Ashley provides oversight and administrative support for our medical services. She said she is most excited about the chance she has here to give new, expecting moms comfort and love during what might be the most frightening time of their lives.
Amy is one of the staff nurses at First Choice. Amy graduated from nursing school at AUM in 1996. After working as a stay-at-home mom for 10 years, she started volunteering here in 2007 and came on staff in 2008. She and her husband, Aaron, have two children, Lacy and Adam. Amy says she loves doing ultrasounds and having the opportunity to show moms their baby for the first time.
After staying at home with her children, Betty became a counselor at First Choice and volunteered for four years in that capacity. She then came on staff part-time in 2010 as a nurse and received the necessary limited ultrasound training. Betty is married to Mal and they have two grown children, Claire and David. She says about working at First Choice, “I love working with the staff and seeing their commitment to Christ and our clients. I also enjoy being able to be a part of women seeing their baby on the ultrasound for the first time.”
Julia started working with us part-time in 2018. She graduated from nursing school at Auburn University in 2009. She and her husband, Grady, and their three children moved to Montgomery in 2016. Grady is the pastor at Gateway Baptist Church. Julia says she loves using her medical skills and training to meet physical needs of our clients while also getting to share the love of Christ. We are thankful to have her on our team.
Board of Directors