Mission Statement

“Building faith and strengthening communities through service to others.”

SSP is a Christian non-profit organization providing life-changing experiences through acts of service repairing homes in rural and urban communities. We invite middle school and high school youth and young adults to experience the profound power of serving people who have a culture and life experience different from their own.

During our domestic Summer Program each year, approximately 1,250 youth and 250 adult volunteers from 125 churches and 35 paid summer staff live, worship and work together on 5 different site locations. Together, their work results in 80 safer, drier, and more comfortable homes and community centers.

Inclusion Statement

SSP is an affirming and welcoming community that celebrates the lives and love of all people. We welcome LGBTQ+ individuals who have too often been excluded from communities of faith.

As people of faith, we strive to live in tandem with creation, rather than in opposition to it. To do so means welcoming all people, regardless of sexual orientation, gender, or its expression. Our passion for justice, love, and equality has no limits. Together we seek to be bearers of goodness, so we might truly open minds, hearts, and doors.

Central Staff in Sacramento

Megan Walsh

Executive Director

Megan Walsh started as an intern in the SSP office in 2009. Since then she has served as the Director of Programs and has transitioned into the Executive Director position in April 2018. She has a professional degree in architecture from the University of Oregon and worked for five years on Summer Staff. She participated as a youth at SSP once with Fremont United Methodist Church in Portland.

Megan enjoys screen printing and making art with friends, running with Fleet Feet Racing Sacramento, playing soccer, and building an edible city by volunteering with Harvest Sacramento.

Email Megan


Jake Bailey

Business Manager

Jake Bailey has been the Business Manager since 2013. He received a Bachelor of Science in business with a focus in accounting and a Bachelor of Arts in women’s and gender studies with distinction from Sonoma State University. Jake attended SSP four times as a youth with the First United Methodist Church of Loomis, and volunteered for a week as a Staff-In-Training.

Jake likes playing board games, reading, biking, stand-up-paddle boarding, and spending time with his niece and nephew.

Email Jake

Veronica Russell

Director of Volunteers and Outreach

Veronica Russell has been SSP’s Director of Volunteers and Outreach since 2014. She holds a Bachelor’s in Interpersonal Communications and minor in Religion from Pepperdine University. Prior to joining the Office team, Veronica served with SSP as a youth through Point Pleasant United Methodist Church, as a staff-in-training, and on summer staff.

Veronica enjoys travel, storytelling, learning languages, cooking, and spending time outdoors. She is passionate about personality tests, the well-placed pun, and the intersection of faith and service.

Email Veronica

Adam Vargyas

Director of Development

Adam has a 20 year history with Sierra Service Project, stretching all the way back to his first year as a youth volunteer in Upper Lake, California in August of 2000, to five years as a summer staffer, and two as an adult volunteer. He holds a bachelor’s degree in history from California State University, San Bernardino, and seven years of experience in nonprofit programming and fundraising.

Adam lives in East Sacramento with his wife Laureen, a fellow SSP veteran (they met as summer staff in 2007). They enjoy travelling, volunteering at their local church (Sacramento First UMC), and relaxing at home with their two cats.

Email Adam

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McKenna Culbertson

Program Manager

McKenna Culbertson is the Program Manager for the Rancho Cordova Community Beautification Program. McKenna served as a summer staff member for four summers, the most recent of which being the Site Director in Spokane, WA. McKenna also served as a youth volunteer for four years with Pacific Palisades Community United Methodist Church.

In 2016 she graduated from the Eastern Washington University with a degree in Sociology and is excited to continue working with volunteers!

Email McKenna

Kara Martin

Office Assistant

Kara Martin is the Office Assistant. She is a student majoring in communications and journalism.

Kara enjoys writing poetry and stories, and plans to write her own book one day. She also loves to play sports. Her dream is to start her own group home and give back.

Email Kara

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Bob Elam

Project Consultant

Bob Elam is SSP’s Project Consultant. He has been with SSP for over a decade.

He is a former contractor and likes to spend time at Lake Tahoe with his wife and two grown children.

Email Bob

Joseph Makunga

San Diego Regional Coordinator

Joseph Makunga is the San Diego Regional Coordinator. He has worked on SSP staff for three summers – two in San Diego County! Last summer he fostered many relationships within the Imperial Beach community as the Spiritual Life Coordinator. He is excited to develop the second year of SSP working in the South Bay, focusing on Imperial Beach.

Read Joseph’s story.

Email Joseph

Charlotte Wannagat

Portland Regional Coordinator

Charlotte Wannagat has been working on staff for our Portland year round programs since 2015, leading Alternative Breaks and Weekends of Service. Prior to working for SSP, she also volunteered as a high school summer volunteer and Staff-in-Training. Charlotte has lived in Portland for the past decade and is originally from Los Angeles. She spends most of her time working as a real estate broker and attends Vermont Hills United Methodist Church.

Email Charlotte

Office Volunteers

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Butch Henry

Butch Henry has been a long-time volunteer at SSP’s central office in Sacramento. His son is an SSP staff alumni, Greg Henry. Charlie is very involved with his home church First United Methodist Church of Loomis and his son’s farm in Placerville, Full Moon Farm. Butch has cycled 40 and 41 miles with the central team in honor of SSP’s recent anniversaries.

Thank you Butch!

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Rev. Dave Hinshaw

Rev. David Hinshaw is a retired United Methodist pastor. A native of Wisconsin and passionate Green Bay Packers fan, Dave had a long career serving churches throughout Wisconsin before retiring in Sacramento. He is a West Point graduate and railroad buff, among many other things!

Thank you Dave!

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Linda Klaman

Linda Klaman is a retired Occupational Therapist and member of St. Mark’s United Methodist Church in Sacramento. Her daughter is an SSP staff alumni and current SSP group leader, Holly Kennedy. Linda is an avid gardener and often shares her bountiful produce with the team. Since April 2015, Linda has volunteered almost ever week in the office for over 300 hours!

Thank you Linda!

Hank Smith

Hank Smith joined the Wednesday morning volunteer crew in 2018. He is a Navy veteran and has lived all over the West Coast. Hank’s specialty is welding, but he can make a wonderful sculpture out of wood with a chainsaw and chisel! Hank has attended SSP  with his church, Point Pleasant United Methodist Church in Elk Grove, California.

Thank you Hank!

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Charlie Wingo

Charlie Wingo has been a long-time volunteer at SSP’s central office in Sacramento. Charlie has three adult children who all attended SSP during their teen years. He is very involved with his home church First United Methodist Church of Loomis. Charlie has cycled 40 and 41 miles with the central team in honor of SSP’s recent anniversaries.

Thank you Charlie!

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ReFrame Association

Sierra Service Project is proud to be a founding member of ReFrame Association, a network of 45 home repair nonprofits from around the country. Together, we repaired 8,563 homes with 73,587 volunteers in 2018. Every November, SSP’s Central Staff participates in the ReFrame Conference to learn, grow, and connect with other leaders in nonprofit home repair. By sharing best practices and bringing expert resources to leaders, our organizations operate more efficiently, proactively, and successfully to eradicate substandard housing in the communities we serve.