Founders, Board & Team
Orthodox Ministry Services (OMS) was created to be a vehicle that provides creative solutions to contemporary problems and issues facing Orthodox Christianity in the United States of America. A partnership between the Virginia H. Farah Foundation, The Renaissance Fund, and The Hellenic Foundation – Chicago, OMS serves to catalyze the enormous potential of Orthodox organizations, ministries, archdioceses, metropolises, dioceses, and parishes across all Orthodox jurisdictions represented by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the USA.
OMS offers three categories of non-financial organizational services:
- OMS provides customized non-financial organizational support;
- OMS offers scalable resources, training, and guidance for all interested Orthodox organizations; and
- OMS is helping to build the “bench” of Orthodoxy in the United States by creating and cultivating networks of talented Orthodox individuals, organizations, ministry workers, and program alumni.
OMS also works to maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of Orthodox Christian institutions and initiatives, as well as Orthodox philanthropists and their God-given resources, so that we may live up to our calling to be worthy stewards of the Body of Christ in the world.
Who We Are
Our founders and collaborative partners include the following individuals:
- Eric Namee: Eric is a founder and managing member of Hinkle Law Firm in Wichita, Kansas, and practices in the areas of employee benefits, taxation, tax litigation, and nonprofit law. He serves as President of the Virginia H. Farah Foundation, a private foundation dedicated exclusively to supporting the work of the Orthodox Church. Both as an attorney and a philanthropist, he has assisted hundreds of Orthodox organizations and ministries. He serves on the board of Orthodox Christian Prison Ministry and is a trustee emeritus of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary. Eric is also a Certified Public Accountant, a member of the National Advisory Council of the Wichita State University Endowment Association, and a guest instructor on tax procedure at the University of Kansas School of Law. He holds a B.B.A. in Accounting from Wichita State University and a J.D. from the University of Kansas School of Law.
- Steve Laduzinsky: Steve is a veteran trial lawyer and founding partner of Laduzinsky and Associates in Chicago, Illinois. He also serves as the President of the Renaissance Fund, a leading funding agent for Orthodox organizations and institutions. Steve has decades of experience advising and representing small and mid-size businesses, government entities, church institutions, and nonprofit organizations. He serves on numerous Orthodox and secular nonprofit boards. He holds a B.A. from DePaul University and a J.D. from The John Marshall School of Law.
- Jon de Jong: Jon is a Senior Director with Alvarez & Marsal in Denver. With over 20 years of experience advising one of the nation’s largest closely held corporations and its affiliates, Jon focuses on global M&A tax advisory with respect to both strategic and private equity investments. Jon graduated at the top of his class with his LL.M. (Taxation) from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, earned his J.D. from the University of Kansas, and taught tax courses for several years in the Master of Accountancy program at Wichita State University.
- William P. Vranas: William is an owner and operator of Vranas and Chioros Real Estate investment brokerage and development firm serving Chicagoland for over 40 years. A graduate of Northwestern University School of Business, he is a Certified Commercial Investment Member of the National Association of Realtors and Realtor Emeritus. A former Board Member of Plaza and Edens Banks of the Metropolitan Bank Group, William is past president of the Hellenic Foundation and currently serves as its Grant Committee Chairman.
OMS staff and collaborative partners include the following individuals:
- Nicholas Chakos: Nicholas is an experienced nonprofit leader. He previously served as Executive Director of FOCUS North America, Director of Development of IOCC, and Founder of the healthcare analytics company PRIMR.co. He is an adjunct professor of organizational development at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School and has trained over 250 nonprofit organizations in strategic planning, fundraising, and organizational infrastructure. He is a certified fundraising executive and a graduate of the Lilly School of Philanthropy, in addition to holding a B.A. from Washington & Jefferson College and an M.N.A. from the University of Notre Dame.
- Matthew Namee: Matthew is a nonprofit and tax attorney with extensive experience representing Orthodox nonprofit organizations. In addition to practicing law, he served as Chief Investment Officer for Black Saber Capital and Grant Coordinator for the Virginia H. Farah Foundation. He founded the Society for Orthodox Christian History in the Americas and is editor of the website OrthodoxHistory.org. As a young man, he was the research assistant to Bill James, the father of sabermetric analysis and an executive with the Boston Red Sox. Matthew earned a B.A. in History from Wichita State University and a J.D. from the University of Kansas School of Law.
- Mark Arey: Mark served the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese for more than 30 years as both a parish priest and in a variety of administrative positions: Director of the Office of Inter-Orthodox, Ecumenical and Inter-Faith Relations, Executive Secretary to the Chairman of the Assembly of Bishops, General Secretary of SCOBA, Executive Director of Communications, and Ad Interim Director of the Archbishop Iakovos Leadership One Hundred Endowment Fund. In 2013, he asked to return to the ranks of the laity in order to marry. From 2014 through 2018 he was the Executive Director of The Hellenic Initiative, Inc. (THI), a venture philanthropy effort focused in Greece. He holds a BA from the University of Maryland, a M.Div. from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, and a M.S. from Loyola College.
- Anthony Scott: Anthony Scott founded Stewardship Advocates, an Orthodox nonprofit consulting service, after a successful career in church ministry and as Chief Advancement Officer at St. Vladimir’s Seminary (SVS). At SVS, Anthony was responsible for board development, strategic planning, student recruitment, and all aspects of fundraising. He went on to found Stewardship Advocates, where, for 18 years, he assisted over 150 Orthodox parishes, dioceses, and organizations; produced a monthly newsletter with a subscription base of approximately 4,000; and maintained an information-rich website on nonprofit professional development translated into the words, ways, and theology of the Orthodox Church. He also contributed to and edited Good and Faithful Servant: Stewardship in the Orthodox Church (SVS Press, 1999). Anthony holds a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley and an M.Div. from St. Vladimir’s Seminary.
- Bill Marianes: Bill runs the Stewardship Calling ministry, which provides strategic planning guidance to hundreds of Orthodox parishes and other institutions in North America. Bill spent 36 years as a corporate attorney for a large international law firm, and even during his career, he devoted significant time to assisting Orthodox parishes and ministries with strategic planning, fundraising, and stewardship. After retiring from his law practice, he expanded his Stewardship Calling ministry to a full-time endeavor. Currently focused on parishes and metropolises/dioceses, Bill’s tools and highly engaged process have had a transformative effect on the churches he has assisted. He holds a B.A. in Psychology from Northwestern University, an M.B.A. from Goizueta Graduate School of Business Administration at Emory University, and a J.D. from Emory University School of Law.