Erin Gilmore

Erin Gilmore is the Acting Conference Minister for the Rocky Mountain Conference of the United Church of Christ. Prior to this role, she served as an Associate Conference Minister of the Rocky Mountain Conference from 2017-2023.  In her current work she seeks to support clergy and lay leadership as they aspire to create life-giving and life-affirming spaces that embody the best of what we can be as the Body of Christ. Rev. Gilmore received A Master of Divinity from Pacific School of Religion and undergraduate degree in Mathematics from St. Olaf College.  Before being called to serve in the conference, Rev. Gilmore served as a pastor of two congregations, first at Holladay United Church of Christ in Salt Lake City, UT and then at First Congregational Church, in Loveland, CO.   In addition to serving in the UCC, she is also involved in a worldwide practice of Participative Leadership or the Art of Hosting, which is an approach to leadership that seeks to address the complex challenges we face by harnessing the wisdom and self-organizing capacity of human beings.

Rev. Li’avaa Moevao

Li’avaa Moevao is the Senior Pastor for the First Samoan Congregational Church in Huntington Beach, California.  He is a member of the National Samoan Council of Churches serving as the Youth Director.  Rev. Moevao attended Kanana Fou Theological Seminary in Pago Pago, American Samoa from 2012 to 2015, graduating with a Bachelor of Divinity.  Prior to attending KFTS, Rev, Moevao worked for the Los Angeles Police Department as a Police Officer from 1988 to 2012, retiring after 24 years.  Rev. Moevao also served in the United States Navy from 1978 until 1987.

Melissa Garrett-Hirsch

Melissa Garrett-Hirsch is an executive level technology leader, business organizational development professional and business owner. She has over 30 years of experience developing Information Technology strategies and delivering operational excellence within the consumer products and financial services verticals. She is the Owner and President of the UnBAR Café Inc., an independent Coffee and Wine Bar located in the Larchmere neighborhood of Cleveland, and a licensed Real Estate agent in Ohio. Ms, Garrett-Hirsch currently leads a team of Sr. Analysts at Progressive Insurance Company responsible for improving the quality of IT systems across the enterprise. Previously, Ms, Garrett-Hirsch has spent over 25 years in various senior leadership roles at Cleveland Metropolitan School District, American Greetings, and KeyCorp. She is an active member of the Shaker Area Development Corp (SHAD), Woodhill Steering Committee, National Association of University Women, and Alpha Kappa Sorority Inc., past trustee for the Shaker Heights Library Board, and Greater Cleveland YMCA. She holds a Bachelor of Management and Information Systems (Notre Dame) and a Master of Management with a concentration in Systems Thinking (Ursuline College).

Robert Fard

Robert (Bob) Fard serves as Vice President of Acquisitions and Development for Retirement Housing Foundation; managing the acquisition, construction, project management, forward planning and entitlements for RHF, a recognized ministry of the UCC.  His background is rooted in single-family tract, multi-family and office/retail developments.  Prior to joining RHF, Mr. Fard served in an acquisitions or forward planning role for companies such as CityView (founded by former Secretary of HUD, Henry Cisneros), Red Mountain Retail Group and Young Homes.  Mr. Fard holds a BA in Economics from University of California, Irvine and earned a Masters of Real Estate Development (MRED) from University of Southern California (USC). Mr. Fard also holds a real estate brokers’ license in California.

Betsey Saffar, Vice President & CFO

Saffar brings extensive non-profit and private-sector financial experience and an entrepreneurial spirit to Cornerstone Fund. She previously served as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of Achievement Centers for Children, a Cleveland, Ohio based non-profit that provides an array of services to children and adults with disabilities. Prior to that, Saffar was an accountant at Ernst & Young and also ran her own catering company. After earning a Bachelors Degree from The Ohio State University, Saffar studied Accounting at the Masters level at Cleveland State University and earned an MBA in Applied Management from Indiana Wesleyan University

UCC Financial Ministries


The UCC Church Building & Loan Fund (CB&LF) assists new and renewing United Church of Christ congregations and other Christian congregations regardless of sect or denominational affiliation, that are planning to buy a first church building or land site, or who want to construct, renovate or develop a church building, school, parsonage or other church-owned real property that advances the mission of the Church.

Learn More

Bricks & Mortals


Bricks & Mortals helps houses of worship thrive by providing creative and sustaining solutions amidst the costly and challenging landscape of operating in New York City. Bricks and Mortals is a membership organization dedicated to sustaining opportunities for faith-based organizations.

Learn More

Jubilee Impact Fund


Jubilee Impact Fund, Inc. is a non-profit ministry organization that directs faith impact investment to Christian community development by establishing impact investment fund and enterprise program models. Jubilee’s biblical vision is to rebuild, restore and renew cities of hope and human flourishing around the United States. By partnering with local investors, churches, and faith-based organizations, Jubilee directs capital into business and real estate ventures in at-risk neighborhoods that employ women, youth, and minorities supported by Christ-centered ministries. Jubilee is raising Christian community development impact investment funds in metropolitan areas nationwide.

Learn More

Neighborhood Development Ministries


Neighborhood Development Ministries, Inc. (ND Ministries) serves neighbors by helping the local church foster great neighborhoods. ND Ministries partners with and support churches and ministries in local communities to help them create neighborhood-based opportunities for service and outreach. By fostering these supportive, inclusive, and sustainable neighborhoods, ND Ministries envision the neighborhood’s flourishing by living out the Great Commandment and the Great Commission through innovative community and economic development models.

Learn More

Rebecca Perera, Chief of Credit

Rebecca Perera is Cornerstone’s Chief of Credit. Prior to her appointment as CoC, Rebecca was the Fund’s Director of Lending, where she developed and codified lending operations and served as primary underwriter. Rebecca came to Cornerstone from the Economic and Community Development Institute (ECDI), a nonprofit SBA micro lender, where she shepherded dozens of small business owners through underwriting and provided both pre-loan technical expertise and post-loan business development consulting to support their enduring success.

Rebecca’s commitment to community-oriented and equitable access to resources — whether financial, educational, or cultural — makes her a vital contributor to Cornerstone’s mission-oriented approach to lending. Prior to her career in finance, Rebecca was a professional orchestral musician, performing on stages worldwide and spearheading a number of community engagement projects in the arts. This early work was the genesis of her ongoing commitment to community and economic development, including board service with a diverse array of organizations such as Noteworthy Federal Credit Union, Les Delices Early Music Ensemble, Metro West Community Development Organization and Cleveland Public Theatre’s Masrah Al-Arabi.

She holds degrees from Oberlin College and Rice University.