Our Board

We are particularly grateful to the members of our board, who volunteer their time, love and energy to ensure the future of the ranch!

blonde woman with a red jacket coat


Paige Mater, President



Paige loves to volunteer and serve at various events and organizations throughout the Richmond community. She truly believes serving others benefits the volunteer as much as those being served. In 2013 Paige was seeking to learn how to ride horses and had also been investigating various organizations where she could have an impact by serving.  Through an existing volunteer, she discovered Wings of Hope Ranch would meet both of those needs and more! She began volunteering at the ranch working with the children and then became a barn worker and then a session supervisor. Since 2015, she has served as Secretary on the Board of Directors.

Paige is a Quality Engineer at McKesson Medical Surgical where she serves on the Board of the ABILITY employee resource group as the Community Outreach/Volunteer Lead.  The ABILITY group seeks to empower and connect employees to foster awareness around McKesson’s efforts in diversity & inclusion of individuals with disabilities & caregivers.  She has coordinated volunteer events with local organizations such as Beyond Boundaries, SOAR365, and Sportable. Paige also delivers meals for Feed More’s Meal on Wheels program once per month.

Paige has degrees in Chemical Engineering and Textile Chemistry from North Carolina State University. She is married to Dennis and has two sons, Hayden (married to Rachel) and Lane, and a wonderful granddaughter named Cora. Paige loves the beach and the coast and spends many weekends on the Chesapeake Bay. Her life bible verse is Phil 4:6-7 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.


Gail McDonnell, Treasurer



Gail McDonnell takes a vision and makes it reality through financial planning and strategic development. She is a big-picture strategist with an eye for financial details. She enjoys working with the numbers as much as she enjoys working with the ranchers, families, horses and volunteers. Wings of Hope Ranch provides Gail with the opportunity to pursue her dreams of making a difference in the lives of others.

Currently, as Treasurer for Wings of Hope Ranch, Gail assumes responsibility for the financial stewardship of Wings of Hope Ranch, while ensuring there is sound alignment and support of their strategic plan to continue building Wings of Hope Ranch into a dynamic, God focused support system for the children and families they serve.   

Gail brings with her 15 years of experience in building and managing budgets and forecasts, reporting financial information, guiding the development of strategic plans, and serving in leadership roles to her position on the Wings of Hope Ranch Board of Directors. Her knowledge was gained through earning her bachelor’s degree in economics and finance at Wesley College (a small, private Christian college in Delaware) and through her work experiences at the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond and Media General, Inc. 

Gail is very passionate about helping others work through their challenges and achieve their dreams, while building a stronger relationship with God.  She is very fortunate to have the love and support from her husband and her two stepchildren, who help to make it possible to dedicate her life to supporting Wings of Hope Ranch. 

white woman with brown hair smiling


Marianne Powell, Secretary



Marianne was born and raised in Hanover County and is a wife and mother of two grown sons. After twenty years as a commercial real estate paralegal, she “retired” to be a full time homemaker and enjoyed being involved at her sons’ schools from elementary through high school. Now she enjoys her job with the Hanover Chamber of Commerce where she learned of Wings of Hope Ranch and its mission.

Marianne and her husband of 35 years live in Old Church with their Bernese Mountain Dog, Jake. They enjoy spending time with good friends, hosting parties and each and every moment with their sons. Marianne has loved horses and enjoyed horseback riding from as far back as she can remember. She also enjoys quiet time and reading mystery and suspense novels. A member of Fairmount Christian Church, Marianne loves the Lord and spending time every morning in His Word. She lives in the hope of Jesus’ promise to return.

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. – John 14:1-3

white male mid fifties with gray hair and glasses


John Madison



John is a resident of Hanover County, Virginia, where he was born and raised.  He is active in his church, leads personal finance classes for the community, and serves on the Board of Directors for multiple charities in the Richmond, Virginia, area.

Professionally, he is a Certified Public Accountant with 30+ years of experience, including the last 20+ years as a freelance accountant and entrepreneur.  He has earned a BS in Accounting and a MS in Personal Financial Planning.  Since retiring from full-time work in 2015, he authored a book on Christian financial stewardship and started a financial counseling ministry teaching others how to manage God’s resources His way.

John and his wife, Rachel, have three adult children, a new puppy at home and their first grandchild is due in May 2021.


Betty Kniesche



Betty has lived in Hanover county most of her life and has been a horse lover about the same amount of years! Betty built her home and property, which included a barn and pastures and she and her family raised many horses, on which many children learned to ride over the years.

In 2006, Alison, Jane and Cindy approached Betty about allowing them to start a horse ministry on her property. Betty stepped out in faith and generously answered yes! Since then, they grew from one horse and one child a week to 10 horses and 50 children per week in 2020! Without Betty, Wings of Hope Ranch would not exist. Betty has allowed the ministry to use the barn and land no cost since 2006.  Betty has served as a loyal board member since the ranch’s humble beginnings and has helped it grow to the size it is today.

Betty enjoys getting to know the children and families that visit the ranch regularly and watching the horses graze right out her back window. Over the years, because of Betty’s generosity she has impacted hundreds of children by allowing her land to be used for good, to share the love of Jesus with so many. This photo is just a GLIMPSE of the impact her decision to share her property back in 2006 has had on children and families! What a wonderful legacy Betty’s generosity is for our community.


Tina Word



Tina is a lover of animals. As a young child, she had a passion for horses but never had an opportunity to have a horse of her own. Tina believes God gave her this desire long ago so that she would be drawn to this ministry at this point in her life. Now, as a volunteer at Wings at Hope Ranch, she has 9 horses to love and help take of! Tina loves that this is not just a horse therapy or horse riding facility but it is a place to share the gospel with children and all the families and volunteers involved. Tina has been involved with children and youth ministry for decades now and this ministry is just perfect in that it combines her love for animals and the desire for all, especially children, to know Jesus Christ and to find true Hope in Him. After a couple years of volunteering in many positions at the Ranch, Tina was given the honor to serve on the Board.

Tina has a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology from Virginia Commonwealth University. Tina has worked in Information Technology in many roles at Dominion Energy for over thirty years. Tina and her husband, William, live just down the road from the Ranch in Beaverdam. Tina and her husband love travel and adventure and loving on their cats.