OCRM Employee Highlight

Each month we like to highlight an employee who exemplifies the mission, philosophy, and values of our organization.  This month we are delighted to highlight Denise Nelson-Finster as our Employee of the Month.

Denise faithfully serves as our Horse Master at our Double R Ranch program in Temecula.  This unique program allows single men to experience the healing effects of hard work in the outdoors with animals at our working horse ranch.  Denise is a crucial part of this, as she comes alongside the men in the program to teach them how to care for the horses and other livestock.  And she does it all with such joy, as she combines her love for horses with her passion for caring for the Least, the Last, and the Lost. It is an honor to serve alongside of you, Denise!

Tell us a little about yourself.  My name is Denise Nelson-Finster. 

I was born in California but was raised in New Jersey.  I am married to my husband, Kevin, and have two grown kids, Alexis and Jeff, as well as 2 foster kids.  In my free time, I like spinning wool and cooking.

How long have you worked at the Rescue Mission?   How did you hear about the job opportunity?

I have worked for the Rescue Mission for 14 years and I have been with the Double R Ranch for 18 years!  The Rescue Mission bought the Ranch and I was already working there.

What do you love most about your job

I absolutely love my job.  Helping people work through issues using animals is wonderful to be a part of.  I get to use my love for horses, goats, and dogs everyday to help men of all ages come to know the Lord Jesus.  Best job ever!

What is the hardest part of your job

Watching men self-destruct.

How have you grown since you began working at the Rescue Mission? 

The Mission has been a huge influence on my life.  I have been exposed to some of the great “movers and shakers” in the world stage.  I have watched as men’s lives have actually changed.  Watching the Lord influence and direct the “lowest of the low” is miraculous to be a part of.  I’m humbled every single day as I am able to watch the Lord’s “wilderness” change lives and men’s hearts. My heart is filled with peace each day I work here.

Favorite verse?  

I absolutely love the Book of Revelation.

Motivation to keep going, even on the tough days:

The Lord’s will is all that matters.  He is at the Rescue Mission, the Double R Ranch, and all of our programs almost visibly.  I feel His presence all the time here. I love the kid’s reaction to the animals when they come to the Ranch for Family Camp.  It’s exciting to watch the children experience a “different” lifestyle as they collect fresh eggs and food from the garden.  I love speaking into newly married couples lives during Marriage Camp.  And I love speaking to women about being “a woman” during the women’s camps.


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