Spotlight

Spotlight
Tommy, Tricia and Parker Thompson



Tommy grew up in a small town called Challenge on a dirt road in the Sierra foothills.  His name is actually Henry Clay Thompson V, named after the Statesman involved in the Missouri Compromise.  His childhood was spent riding bikes with his best friend and hanging out in the woods with his sister.
 
The elementary school in Challenge was close, but when High School came, it would have required a 45 minute drive to the bus stop and another 45 minute ride to school.  The school was 140 students total K-12 and did not have much to offer for excitement, so his dad suggested Tommy move to Novato with his Grandparents for a better school and more opportunity.  This moved seemed more of a necessity after his Grandfather suffered a stroke and was put in a wheel chair.  It was a bit of a culture shock moving to a seemingly huge school in his Junior year.  Things were great with the grandparents during the first year, but Tommy had problems making relationships with friends.  The next year he obtained a job, which turned into a full time position as an electrical apprentice.   He started driving and thriving socially.
 
Tommy was always spiritual.  He was raised loving God although he wasn't part of a church in Challenge.  He started attending the Marin Vineyard Christian church in San Rafael in High School.  He started tithing to the church and obtained a job working for a local contractor.  He stuck with it, kept living with his grandparents, and was able to branch out on his own and obtain his State Certification and Contractors License and was a fully independent contractor by 2008.  Today Thompson Electric has  a small office and warehouse in Bel Marin Keyes and four employees.
 
In 2009,after attending the Quest and seeing Joe's passion and love-based sermons, Tommy knew he had found a new church home, a good fit.  Understanding that love and God are synonomous has facilitated his long term spiritual growth and a heart for God. 
 
Although very successful professionally, Tommy dreamed of building a home and family structure similar to his grandparents.  He struggled with a few relationships trying to find true love and finally did when he found Tricia.  Today Tommy feels a strong sense of fellowship and community here in Novato and is compelled to continue to grow in relationship with God and with the church community.  He is interested in maintaining strong spiritual connections and always willing to lend a helping hand and learn how to better serve others and support his family.
 
Tricia was born and raised in Wisconsin.   She attended a Armenian Apostolic church (where they spoke only Armenian) on holidays and a few other rare occasions, but did not understand much about faith and God until college. She obtained her Bachelor's in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin.   One spring break, she visited her friend at a Bible College in Colorado - this was the turning point in her walk with God.  A week here was all she needed to understand what spirituality was all about, and she took this with her for the rest of her life.
 
Tricia was diagnosed with Crohn's disease at age 14, and has had several struggles with this throughout her life.  When she was diagnosed, she faced several doctors ignoring her symptoms and blaming her weight loss (she was less than 70 lbs. at this time) on an eating disorder.  Finally, a doctor was introduced that actually listened to her problems.  She was able to diagnose the problem and Tricia was put on several medications to temporarily make her feel better.  The next episode came while she was in college.  On New Years Eve morning, while at her parent's home for Christmas Break (more than a blessing that she was at home), she woke up to unbearable pain and was rushed to the ER in an ambulance.  Immediately her doctor put her in surgery, which is where they found that her intestines had ruptured and she needed 6 inches removed and to be on a colostomy for 3 months.  As having the colostomy was extremely difficult during this time, she was just happy to be alive and to be given another chance. 
 
Tricia married a man in the Coast Guard at age 23 and had son Parker a few years later.  Tricia relocated to San Antonio,Texas and spent a lot of her time alone, as her husband was away most of the time, and all of her family and friends were still in Wisconsin.  She decided to get her Master's Degree in Accountancy and  she and Parker found a large Christian church which they started attending. 
 
After three years in Texas, Tricia moved to Novato with her family, and immediately fell in love with Marin and all it had to offer. Here she obtained her CPA and worked as an auditor for three years in San Francisco for a CPA firm.  She now works for Autodesk and was recently promoted from Revenue Analyst to Revenue Manager last month.   
 
Unfortunately efforts were not enough to keep her marriage together and they parted ways.  During this time, Tricia and Parker were attended New Life Christian church in Novato.  Her faith was strong and helped her through this difficult time.  The church helped ,but the large size was not ideal to her.   
 
Not long after this, Tricia met Tommy.  Tommy had been attending the Quest for a few years, and he started bringing Tricia and Parker.  She was immediately in love (not only with Tommy but with the Quest and all it had to offer).  Tommy and Tricia faced a few initial hurdles, but in the end nothing could come between the bond and connection that they shared.  They were engaged after 2 years of dating and married one year after that in Nevada City, CA.  Parker could not be happier, and Tommy has bee so supportive of both Tricia and Parker through everything.
 
Tommy, Tricia and Parker like to camp, boat and stay active.  They ran a Tough Mudder race in Chicago in 2013 and a 1/2 marathon in Novato in 2014.    They are content living in their Novato home and are adding an addition now in hopes that another baby will come into this world soon. 
 

Jason and Cheryl Mitchell



Jason was born and raised here in Novato, Black Point actually. A wonderful place to grow up as a kid, trees, water, marsh, fire roads, Renaissance Faire and a country store.  His family attended St. Anthony's parish.
 
Christmas 1975, when he was 12, he found himself in Abercrombie and Fitch in San Francisco with his mom shopping for a gift for his Dad, a commercial artist who dabbled in carving decoys and hunting.  He somehow decided he wanted to get him a duck call for Christmas.  With his mom he purchased a Rosewood Iverson Duck Call for him.  He had no idea at the time, but apparently, it captured his imagination and he started carving bird calls.  So much so, he ended up buying the business from Mr. Iverson that spring of 1976.  Yes, west coast Duck Dynasty.
 
When Jason was not delivering newspapers, he was working with his dad and brother in the shop grinding in sawdust and shellac.  He became quite good at not only making duck calls, but using them as well.  He is a two time National Duck Calling champion and competed twice in the world duck calling championships in Stuttgart, Arkansas.  Not sure how this translates in 2015 Marin County, but he can still talk a mallard out of its feathers.
 
He attended CSU Sacramento and majored in business.  Post college years, he came back to Novato to help his dad in the duck call business and attended First Baptist Church in this very building where The Quest meets.  He then moved to Southern California to attend Talbot School of Theology.  He saw a beautiful girl with a guitar around her neck at a church in Long Beach.  He did not believe in love at first sight until that moment.  The problem was she had a boyfriend and fortunately for him that worked itself out. He and Cheryl got married in 1992 (there is a longer version of this story that is worth telling but probably not in this context).
 
After seminary, Cheryl and Jason moved to Vancouver, WA to plant a church.  They started and led the church for almost 6 years.  From there they moved to Dallas, TX where he was hired to work with an organization that worked with churches nationally.  Cheryl spent most of her time working for American Airlines and he joined a young startup and spent almost ten years building a company that served non-profits in the area of fundraising.  They spent 13 hot summers in Dallas where they still have some very dear friends but don't miss the topography.
 
In 2012 they moved back to the west coast to be closer to family.  And after a year of mostly watching football on Sundays, they wandered into the The Quest on Palm Sunday, 2013 and have not left.
 
They have two dogs and a cat.  They are grateful to be here.