About
Maryland
Family
Institute

The Maryland Family Institute

About MFI

As a non-profit organization, our goal is simple - protect life, promote marriage, preserve religious liberty and protect parental rights. Alongside you, we’ll fight to enshrine faith, family, and freedom as undeniable, immovable parts of Maryland’s laws for generations to come.

Vision

Building a Maryland where God is honored, life is cherished, families flourish, and religious freedom thrives.

Mission

Equipping God’s people to advance faith, family and freedom in Maryland’s Church, Capitol, and Culture.

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The MFI Team

Staff

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Jonathan M. Alexandre

Legislative Counsel

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Leigh-Ann Bellew

Operations and Administrative Consultant

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Lois Berwager

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

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Lila Grove

Intern

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Madison Marino

Visiting Fellow in Education Policy

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Nick Stoltzfus

Fractional CFO

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Jeffrey S. Trimbath

PRESIDENT

Advisory Board

The Honorable
Kathy Szeliga

Member, House of Delegates, District 7
Annapolis, MD

Ambassador
Ellen Sauerbrey

Former Member and Minority Leader
Baldwin, MD

Benjamin S. Carson, MD

Founder & Chairman, the American Cornerstone Institute

Delano Squires

Contributor, Blaze Media
Bowie, MD

Pastor Joel Galan

Transformation Church
Columbia, MD

Martha Schaerr

Derwood, MD

Academic Advisory Board

Shaun Rieley, Ph.D.

CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY OF AMERICA

Hillsdale College
Hyattsville, MD

Robert Moffit, Ph.D.

UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA

The Heritage Foundation
Severna Park, MD

David Ayers, Ph.D.

NYU

Professor of Sociology, Grove City
College Grove City, PA

Catherine Pakaluk, Ph.D.

HARVARD

Associate Professor, Busch School of Business, Catholic University of America
Hyattsville, MD

Jennifer Brown, M.A.

JOHNS HOPKINS

Community College Instructor
Street, MD

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Jonathan M. Alexandre is Legislative Counsel for Maryland Family Institute. In this capacity, he is a primary voice for families and for the Maryland Family Institute in Annapolis, testifying before committees, meeting with legislators and working with coalition allies. He is also an attorney and Senior Counsel for Governmental Affairs at Liberty Counsel, a DC-based religious liberty litigation firm, in which he consults with and advises law and policy makers at the federal, state, and local levels across the nation. Jonathan was a Presidential Appointee serving on the Board of Directors for The United States Agency for Global Media for the Trump Administration.

Jonathan was formerly the Assistant General Counsel and Public Policy Coordinator for the Massachusetts Family Institute in Boston. Jonathan previously worked for The Jerusalem Center of Public Affairs in Jerusalem, Israel, as a Scholar in Residence, and as a Civilian Attorney at the United States Army’s Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School. He holds a Juris Doctorate from Liberty University. He is married to his wife, Renee Alexandre, and they are blessed with a daughter.

Leigh-Ann Bellew began her career at Ailes Communications after attending the University of North Texas. Upon marriage and motherhood, she shifted her focus, dedicating to herself to her family. She is a devoted wife to Peter and homeschooled their now adult sons, Peter, Jr. and Liam, using a classical education approach. She co-founded the Academy of Classical Studies co-op and also taught at a private Christian high school.

Leigh-Ann served as Executive Director of Solutions Health and Pregnancy Center in Shrewsbury, NJ, a clinic supporting women facing unplanned pregnancies and at risk for abortion.

Now in Maryland, Leigh-Ann leverages her diverse skills to support the mission of the Maryland Family Institute, managing administrative and operational functions.

Lois Berwager serves as the Administrative Assistant for Maryland Family Institute. In this capacity, she serves the staff of MFI by administering systems, responding to requests, communicating with constituents, scheduling meetings, and ensuring each team member is equipped with the materials required for success. With her varied administrative experiences and a penchant for photography, she provides MFI with a variety of skillsets and eagerness to grow. Most importantly, she is dedicated to her local church in which she attends and serves faithfully.

Lyla Grove is the Maryland Family Institute’s first intern. In this position, she carries out administrative duties as assigned and is working on a number of projects. She was born and raised outside of Annapolis, MD, and is currently a homeschooled high school student. Lyla is a member of her local church and enjoys reading and spending time with her family.

Madison Marino is a Visiting Fellow in Education Policy with the Maryland Family Institute, in which capacity she writes and comments about issues related to parental rights, DEI initiatives, and local educational issues.  She developed her expertise in this policy area through her service on the Hill in DC, her research for a Washington think tank, and through her publications and commentaries.  She did her undergraduate at Lamar University in Texas, and was a DC Scholar in Public Policy at Pepperdine University.  

Nick Stoltzfus is a Certified Public Accountant specializing in nonprofit accounting, auditing, and tax. Prior to joining the Maryland Family Institute, he served as Director, Accounting, and Controller at the Heritage Foundation. Nick began his career at PwC LLP shortly after attending undergraduate and graduate school at the University of Virginia, where he received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business and accounting. Today Nick focuses his financial and consulting services primarily on supporting start-up companies and faith-based organizations who are building God’s Kingdom here on Earth.

Jeffrey S. Trimbath has nearly three decades of experience in conservative public policy, faith leadership and development at both the state and federal level. He has served at several DC-based conservative organizations, and served for over six years in the administration of President George W. Bush. He believes strongly in the values of faith, family and freedom as the bedrock of our nation, and he desires to see those values permeating every corner of society.

Jeff and his wife Jill are the parents of three children, all born in Annapolis: Sarah Elizabeth (a junior at Hillsdale College), Katherine Sophia (a freshman at Palm Beach Atlantic University) and James Joseph (a junior in a local classical Christian school). Trimbath holds a B.A. from Messiah College (Grantham PA) and a Master of Divinity from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (South Hamilton MA). He is active in his church where he regularly teaches courses for adults in Christian Formation.