Michael is a native of New York and has lived in the Seattle, WA area since 1990. His previous business experience includes successful entrepreneurial start-up businesses in the Asia Pacific region, including China. It was during this experience that Michael gained a tremendous respect for the Chinese culture and people. Simultaneously he began his association with Starfish in 2009 and became a regular visitor and supporter. With the successful transition of his business in 2012 Michael sought to expand his involvement and participation in helping the children of China by increasing his role at Starfish.
In his role as President of Starfish, Michael has the responsibility for the overall direction of Starfish to ensure that we maintained focused on our mission and continue to thrive well into the future.
Michael has two daughters, Melissa currently age 15 and Kyra “Qiao Qiao” currently age 9. Qiao Qiao came to the United States from the En Mai Children Welfare Institution in Ningbo, PRC in 2008.
Jet is from the Netherlands, has a background in real estate management, and has two adopted children from China. An 11 year old son, Robin, and a 9 year old daughter, Norah. She travelled a lot before she adopted her children, and enjoyed experiencing other cultures and meeting different people.
Her first time traveling to China was in 2001 and she totally loved it! In 2006 she went to China again to adopt her son Robin from Guangxi province. She found out about Starfish Foster Home in 2008, while she was waiting for her daughter Norah. She was at Starfish foster home and they had arranged surgery to repair her heart. After Norah’s adoption she continued to be in contact with Amanda and they became friends. When this opportunity to continue Amanda's work came along she knew this was her chance to make Amanda's wish come true - to make sure Starfish Foster Home continues to "make a difference" for the children in need in China!!!
Mengjie "Jack" Chen is married and has two children and comes from his hometown of Ningbo, which is a seaport city in the northeast of Zhejiang province, People's Republic of China. Jack and his wife Ge xiaolian have been very strong supporters of Starfish Foster Homes for several years. Jack and his family currently reside in Shanghai, where he is a successful entrepreneur in several areas, including electronic components and subsystem to customers throughout China. Jack is a graduate of Zhenjiang University, and has his MBA from the prestigious China Europe International Business School. Jack will help Starfish in the important role of International Relations and in other areas.
Steve Wall has spent 30 years in broadcasting as an operations manager, program director and on-air talent. Over that time, Steve has lived in 11 states and had the opportunity to partner with many great non-profits nationwide such as the Muscular Dystrophy Association, San Diego Children’s Charities, Second Harvest Food Bank, DARE, and Children’s Hospital Colorado – and finds it to be some of the most rewarding work of his career.
Today Steve is President & CEO of Talent Farm, a radio programming, talent, and syndication company based in Seattle. He brings an extensive background in marketing, advertising, consulting and community engagement to the Starfish board.
Steve and his partner Julie are parents to Lia “Sophia” Xiao Hui. Now 7 years old, Lia came to the United States from the Starfish Foster Home in Xian, Shaanxi, PRC in 2010.
Sharon Hughes is a mother of two, originally from Birmingham, England, who has lived most of her life in Vancouver, British Columbia. She and her husband first travelled to China in August, 2006 to adopt their daughter, Erin, from Guangxi Province. They discovered Starfish Foster Home while waiting for their son, River in 2011. Sharon’s relationship with Starfish started with the finding of photos of River on the Starfish Blog, and her passion for helping the children of China has developed after seeing, through Starfish, just how much can be done if we try.
In her work life, Sharon is a project co-ordinator in the manufacturing field. In her Volunteer life, Sharon has helped fundraise with the school PAC for several years, and works with the Executive on her local Families with Children from China organization. She assists with bringing both adoption related and cultural events to the community to help foster support for all aspects of adoption as well as helping to build love and respect for the Cultural Heritage of China.