One of five siblings, Andrew grew up in sunny Southern California. Despite having spent his childhood in a Christian home, he ended up leaving the household at sixteen and took the route of the prodigal son, seeking what the world had to offer. After dealing with a drug and alcohol addiction for almost two decades, the lifestyle led to a prison term, a divorce, and almost took his life.
After a move across the country and living several years in Oklahoma, God softened Andrew’s heart and in 2018 opened a door for him to seek life transformation at the Adult and Teen Challenge center in Neosho, Missouri. Upon graduating the following year, Andrew followed the call to ministry he heard during his time in the program and began serving at Ozarks Teen Challenge, joining the program as an intern in January 2020. Less than a year later, he was asked to take a full-time position where he continues to enjoy the opportunity to pour into the lives of the young men enrolled in the 15-month program. Currently, Andrew serves as a direct care staff member and phase facilitator where he mentors all new students during their first three months. Additionally, Andrew is furthering his education in the recovery field, having become a Certified Peer Specialist and a Missouri Associate Substance Abuse Counselor (MAADC Lev.1), and is working towards becoming a Certified Reciprocal Alcohol & Drug Counselor (CRADC). Even though his journey has been a struggle, today Andrew’s heart is to “see the students have an encounter with Christ” and has “found the joy only God can provide”.