Gina Richie graduated from the Christian Women’s Job Corps (CWJC) site Prisoner Transformation, Inc. in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, while still incarcerated in March 2016. In April 2020, Richie was presented the WMU Foundation’s Sybil Bentley Dove award, a clear reflection of all the ways the Lord has transformed her life in just a few short years. Richie encompasses all the traits the WMU Foundation Board of Trustees and CWJC/CMJC’s National Advisory Council look for when they determine the award recipient.
Helen Thornton, who nominated Richie for the award, said of Richie, “She has walked the path of incarceration, seeing the mistakes in her life, seeing the lack of Jesus and faith in her life, corrected all of these mistakes and is moving forward to tell others her life story. She is truly walking her testimony for others to see.”
The WMU Foundation’s Sybil Bentley Dove award is given annually to an exceptional woman rebuilding her life as a current or former CWJC participant. Richie has persevered through adversity to develop skills and pursue an education to create self-reliant living.
In addition, Thornton added, “She is incorporating her story of addiction and release from that addiction through God’s power into her work and education to help others with addictions to turn to God for healing.”
Through her program, Richie received training to become a peer support recovery specialist. Today she works for the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. Richie has held this position for more than two years and received the 2019 Employee of the Year award for her diligence and hard work. She also serves at the Oklahoma City Crisis Center and works as an approved volunteer at the Oklahoma Department of Corrections. Using her own experience as a way to share the gospel, she helps other women stuck in the situation she once found herself.
Gina Richie is also the mother of four grown children, one son and three daughters, and attends Peoples Church in Midwest City, Oklahoma. As the Sybil Bentley Dove Award Recipient, Richie and her home CWJC site, Prisoner Transformation, Inc., will each receive a cash distribution. Prisoner Transformation, Inc. will use the funds to further their ministry. Richie plans to use the money to take additional classes for her professional career in the field of mental health and substance abuse support so she can continue to share her story of overcoming addiction with the help of the Lord.
This award is made possible by those who support CWJC/CMJC through the WMU Foundation. You can give and help impact the lives of those who need it most at wmufoundation.com/jobcorps.
For more information about CWJC/CMJC, visit wmu.com/jobcorps.
By Lexxe Lipsey