Founder Jack Spencer
The Lost Boys Foundation of Nashville was created in the fall of 2004 by photographer Jack Spencer and a small group of volunteers, after witnessing first hand the tragic circumstances many of the young men still face in the Nashville community. One such circumstance was the death of Pel Gai, a much beloved young man, who was the victim of a murder in a Nashville nightclub. Since there was no money to bury Pel, a group of the Lost Boys, along with Spencer and a few others, raised the $5,700 that was needed to bury him. It was this event that inspired Spencer to make a difference in the future of the Lost Boys of Nashville. “The irony of Pel’s death confounds me, Spencer says.” “They have seen such terror, grief, loss, sadness and horror only to come to our land of opportunity, and then senselessly murdered.” Four of the boys sent to Nashville have been killed in the few years they have been here.
James Makuac - Pres+ident
James Makuac is a painter. He’s also a Lost Boy of Sudan, now living in Nashville. Like many of his peers, Makuac makes work that speaks to his experience of brutal warfare, the loss of family and friends and the harrowing journey the boys made to escape their homes and eventually make a new one here in Nashville. While Makuac isn’t afraid to paint guns and gore, his work is most affecting when it captures the serenity of the herding life he enjoyed before being forced from his homeland. Scenes of long-horned cattle idling at sunset and a busy farming village bustling with activity are rendered with blazes of vibrant colors, full of mood and the willful remembering of a happier time. All the images in the show are from the artist’s book My Life Before.
Saul Solomon - Treasurer
Andy van Roon - Corporate Secretary
Andy vR is a screenwriter and executive producer of multiple projects, and serves as Chairman/GM of Film-Com, an international packaging, financing & distribution market for feature films, television, documentaries and video-gaming concepts. He is a founding board member and past president of the Lost Boys Foundation.
Dee Flower - Executive Director
Dee Flower has been travelling around the world since 1999 when she trekked in the Himalayas to celebrate the millennium. A safari to Kenya in 2003 is what began a long relationship with the African continent that continues today. Last summer (2013) she traveled to South Sudan to acquaint herself with the environment and the democratic government of Africa’s newest nation. This summer (2014) she is planning a trip to Kakuma, the refugee camp in northern Kenya that housed many of the Lost Boys of Sudan until their reunification into other countries and cultures began in 2000. Dee became acquainted with Lost Boys Foundation when promoting her Kenyan Maasai friends at the Centennial Cultural Festival in 2009. Soon thereafter she became an active member of LBFN holding the position of secretary in 2013 before becoming the president in 2014. When not travelling, Dee assists individuals with disabilities find enriching employment in the Nashville community.