Jay Evans is President and one of the original founders of the Toys for the Troops Kids, Inc. Christmas Toy Drive. Jay spent four years in the Air Force serving most of his time at McClellan AFB as a Radar Technician, but is also familiar with spending the holidays 10,000 miles away from home and family. Jay is now a tax consultant and financial advisor serving a client base in the Sacramento area. In 2006 Jay attended the 50th anniversary of some friends and their son was just back from his second tour in Iraq. Jay told the son of our toy drive and the son told him this: “We in the military are proud to serve and we fear nothing. We are the most highly trained military force in the world and are dedicated to protecting America. We fear no man, no government and no other military force. Our only fear is that our loved ones are taken care of back home. I am very pleased that you are doing what you are doing for us.” This statement is the motivating force that keeps Jay serving the drive.
Bret Daniels is Immediate Past President of Toys for the Troops’ Kids. He is an Air Force veteran and served tours in Torrejon, Spain, and Cheyenne, Wyoming. He is currently Council Member and and former Mayor for the City of Citrus Heights. He enjoyed a 20-yr law enforcement career and 4 years with Department of Homeland Security. He has spent many Christmases over the last few years driving thousands of miles each year to deliver toys to kids of our military members who are deployed throughout California and Nevada. Bret is a Founding Member of the Toys for the Troops’ Kids toy drive.
Deb Fordyce is Secretary and a retired 37 year veteran of the Air Force. She served on Active Duty with the Air Force for six years, and 31 years full-time with the Air National Guard. Her interest in the Toys For The Troops’ Kids organization started in 2006 by getting involved at one of the toy collection sites. Participating in this organization presents an opportunity for her to give back to the families of her military brothers and sisters currently serving stateside and overseas.
Michael Axford is Treasurer and was born in Buffalo, New York. When he reached the age of18 in 1968 the Vietnam war was really hot. The draft was a big motivator for him to join the Air Force because he really hoped to fly and get into computers. As it turned out he got both wishes as a radar technician in the 552nd Air Wing stationed at McClellan. Flying was voluntary so he did. There was a small computer on board the aircraft that calculated intercepts for our fighter aircraft.
Michael was stationed in Thailand and South Korea and flew over Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. By the time his four year hitch was up in 1972, the war was about over, so he did not re-enlist. Instead he went to college using his GI Bill benefits, first at American River College and then at Sacramento State University. Michael received a degree in Computer Science and immediately went to work writing programs for accounting systems. After a 30 year career in Computer Science Michael retired and became a Realtor which he still pursues today.
Along the way Michael got married, divorced and married again. He has two daughters and a son, 10 grand kids and now one great granddaughter. He attends a local church and serves there as Treasurer and serves on other committees as needed. Michael has lived in Citrus Heights for 41 years.
Michael came to Toys for the Troop Kids through his 49 year friendship with Jay Evans whom he met in technical school in Biloxi, Mississippi while serving in the military. He has been helping with Toys for the Troops Kids in the background almost from the beginning. In 2017 Michael formally joined the Board to serve as the Treasurer.
Sallie Cullen is a Board Member…
Additional Steering Committe Members
- Windy Cox
- Wayne Scherffius
- Ken Heuser
- Rudy Martinez
- Cat Martinez
- Nikki Daniels
Beneficiaries of the Toy Drive Since 2003