Our Mission Statement
Hope. Shelter. Transformation.
Our Vision Statement
We welcome the hungry and hurting; we address their immediate needs; we build authentic relationships; and we share the Gospel so that total transformation happens. The grace of Christ is an amazing gift to be shared with everyone. We dedicate our lives to the homeless and the poor, and we know that God provides complete life change to those who place their trust in Him. Our holistic approach addresses the needs of the whole person—mind, body, and spirit. We work in collaboration with those who are passionate about bringing permanent solutions to the crisis of homelessness.
Mr. Ray Chastain, along with his wife Alice, and other caring and concerned Christians in Tucson, prayerfully founded Gospel Rescue Mission in 1953.
Learn more about our history in the link below.
Lisa Chastain, Chief Executive Officer
Lisa was born and raised in Tucson, the daughter of a self-made successful homebuilder. She spent her formative years enjoying the fruits of her father’s labors while planning to take over the family business, but God had other plans...
Board of Directors
Brad Smith was raised in Tucson, graduated from the University of Arizona, and has served as President of his aerospace manufacturing company, Airtronics, for the past 25 years. He’s a family man, through and through. His wife Andrea and his two children are his pride and joy, and he spends every spare moment with them, enjoying life together.
Brad has a passion for helping those affected by poverty. For the past ten years, he’s served on several non-profit boards across Tucson, most notably the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona, to plug in and help advance the cause of the impoverished. To that end, he and his family have also served as organizers of HopeFest for many years, where they worked closely with Gospel Rescue Mission CEO Lisa Chastain.
“For as long as I’ve known her,” Brad says, “it was Lisa’s dream to take all the life-changing services that HopeFest offered one day a year and offer them to the community year-round. When she joined Gospel Rescue Mission, and the Center of Opportunity came into being, that dream was realized.“
In May 2020, Brad joined the GRM board to offer his gifts and talents and to help keep that dream moving forward.
“I see poverty as a sort of cancer. It’s great to be able to help people recover, but it’s even more important to help people avoid it in the first place. Gospel Rescue Mission is an amazing organization that addresses poverty from both ends of the spectrum, not only ending homelessness but also offering services designed to keep people from becoming homeless in the first place. And I’m grateful to be a part of that.”
Vice PresidentRead bio
Sunshine and snow-free winters are what brought Art Wadlund to Tucson in 1974. Here, he found success in the real estate business, put down roots, and began to look for opportunities to serve. It was during his volunteer work that he met someone with a heart for ministry that matched his own.
“I know Lisa Chastain (Gospel Rescue Mission’s CEO) from working together at Bethlehem House, a food ministry, going back about 20 years,” says Art. And when, after 40 years in real estate, Art decided to wind down his business and increase his focus on ministry, he knew just where to go to make the most impact.
“I’ve always had a heart for those who are hurting and in need,” Art admits, “and God led me to Gospel Rescue Mission. The door opened and I walked through it.”
In November of 2020, Art joined the GRM board to offer his heart and expertise to the benefit of those we serve. “I’ve only been involved for a short time but I’ve seen a lot of really good things going on. I’d like to move those forward, help look for new opportunities, and be a sounding board for Lisa and others at GRM.”
Art and his wife Jan have three adult children and four grandchildren.
For the past four decades, Rob Tomlinson has been a proud resident of Tucson, and for the past 26 years, following his graduation from the University of Arizona in Regional Development, hes worked in commercial real estate, yet his true passion lies in serving his family and his community.
On one particular Saturday in 2007, Rob and his wife stayed up late into the night just talking about the future of their young family and all the difficulties they saw in their community, and together they made a decision that would forever change their lives - they decided to seek a church as a family. And, a short time later, Rob and his wife were baptized together.
Over the years, Rob has served on planning and land use commissions and committees for both the Town of Sahuarita and the City of Tucson, and he has been involved in both his church and the Boy Scouts of America. When his two kids got older, he started looking for new opportunities to serve his community. Years ago, he had heard of Gospel Rescue Missions positive reputation and financial integrity, yet it wasnt until he was part of the Metropolitan Pima Alliance and he met Art Wadlund and Lisa Chastain that he started to become more aware of the complex issues surrounding the homeless crisis in Tucson and developed a heart for those experiencing homelessness.
In 2023, Rob was asked to join the Board of Directors and did not hesitate to offer "the skills and experience that I have been blessed with to serve those that are ready for treatment, ready for salvation, and that come to Gospel Rescue Mission for help."
VJ Vonk moved to the Tucson area in the fall of 2010 after retiring from Biola University, where she served as the assistant to the Director of Torrey Honors Institute, as well as the Assistant to the Dean of Fine Arts and Communication. VJ and her husband Steve have two grown sons, two daughters-in-law, and three beautiful grandsons, all of whom love the Lord!
VJ was raised in a Christian home and understood from an early age not only God’s love but also the need for Him to be Lord in her life. VJ and Steve have lived from coast to coast in their forty-plus years together and have had many opportunities to see God's faithfulness in action.
VJ and Steve attend CDO Baptist Church in Oro Valley, where they serve in the nursery, and with a hospitality ministry.
“My excitement of being a part of the board is how we, as a group, are seeking God's face,” says VJ, “being willing to step out in faith while striving to be good stewards of all He has provided thus far.”
VJ was elected to the GRM Board in March 2013.
Board MemberRead bio
Anna Graham has served as a surgical pathologist in Arizona for 36 years. During that time, she used her considerable talents to not only help save lives but to pass on what she learned as a Professor of Pathology at the University of Arizona. She has served on several boards, including the American Society of Clinical Pathology for 14 years, and she went on to become President of that prestigious organization.
Now retired, she and her husband Larry devote their time to impacting lives in a different way. Each morning, Monday through Friday, you can find them serving breakfast to the men, women, and children we serve at Gospel Rescue Mission.
“We’ve been so blessed by meeting the guests,” she says, “and finding out about their lives. It’s just a fantastic experience every morning to watch them mature through the recovery program and head on to the outside world.”
In April 2020, Anna took the next step in serving the hurting and homeless by accepting an invitation to join the Gospel Rescue Mission Board of Directors.
“As Christians, we are completely sold on the concept that faith expresses itself through good deeds. We were so struck with the purity of the Mission’s objectives. They want to help people who are in desperate situations, and they accomplish it in the context of Christian surroundings. We support other charitable organizations, but we’ve always had a special spot in our hearts for the Mission.”