Michael Bernard is treasurer of the Michigan Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. Michael grew up in Flint, Michigan, attending Adventist schools and eventually graduating from Great Lakes Adventist Academy. He attended Andrews University for two years and graduated from Southern Adventist University with his accounting degree in 1999. He began as a staff accountant with Arby’s right out of college. He has served as the director of accounting in the cooperate offices of Mrs. Winner’s and Arby’s regional office in Indianapolis, IN. He entered denominational service in 2008 as Boys Dean and Bible Teacher at Indiana Academy in Cicero, Indiana. Before returning to Michigan, he served eight years as Vice Principal and Registrar at Weimar Academy, five of those as Chief Financial Officer of Weimar Institute in Weimar, California. He has also served as a church and church school treasurer. Michael and his wife Cheryl have three boys–Aaron, Benjamin and Isaac. He is passionate about mission work, health ministry and spending time with family. He has enjoyed serving with family on mission trips to India, Africa, Belize, Peru, and the Philippines, as well as locations all across the United States. He feels privileged to serve God and His church as treasurer of this conference.



Tom Owiti was born, and grew up, in Kenya where he received his undergraduate degree in Accounting from the University of Eastern Africa, Baraton. He came to the US in 2002 to study and obtained his MBA in Finance from Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI. Tom is blessed with three children, Ryan at Andrews University and Melisa and Enoch at Battle Creek Academy.

Tom is a lifelong Adventist and has been active in Pathfinder and Adventist Youth activities. He started the Adventist Student for Christ Fellowship, at WMU in 2003, where he got acquainted with CAMPUS and GYC. After graduating in 2004, Tom joined Kellogg Company as Senior Financial Analyst. He also volunteered as treasurer (2005-2009) and board member for GYC (2005-2012) and later as treasurer and board member for AudioVerse (2010-2014). He followed his passion in personal finance and joined Wells Fargo Advisors as Financial Advisor/Wealth Manager in Battle Creek in 2012. He holds Series 7, FINRA securities professional and Series 66, SEC investment advisor licenses, in addition to insurance licenses for Life & Health and Variable annuity in Michigan and Wisconsin. He is also a Certified Kingdom Advisor.

In 2015, Tom accepted a call to Wisconsin Conference and served as Business Manager/Treasurer for Wisconsin Academy until July 2017, when he accepted the call to Michigan Conference to serve as UnderTreasurer and Treasurer for the Michigan Association of SDA. He considers Michigan home and is very happy to return and serve the conference.

For recreation, Tom enjoys reading, nature walks, sight-seeing, photography, biking, camping, physical fitness, and life management (coaching & mentoring).


The three executive officers are the president, secretary, and treasurer.

The treasurer serves as the chief financial officer of the conference, its subsidiaries, and owned institutions. He provides financial management in the budgeting and operation of the conference. 

Local Treasurer Resources

Employee Resources

Please contact the following personnel for your Treasury needs:


Policy Changes for Property and General Liability Insurance: Mona Hickman

Certificate of Liability for Church/School Events: Mona Hickman

Workers Compensation: Jennifer Gardanier

Vehicle Title, Registration and Insurance Inquiries/Changes: Jennifer Gardanier

Properties (Churches, Schools, Community Service, Parsonages): Joel Nephew/Mona Hickman

Building Projects, Purchasing/Selling Properties, etc.: Joel Nephew/Mona Hickman

LURF Requests: Tom Owiti


General Treasury

Local Church/School Audits: Brenda Nelson

LUCIS Helpdesk: Brenda Nelson

Billing Inquiries: Deb Fitzpatrick

Remittance Inquiries: Deb Fitzpatrick

Tuition Subsidy: Deb Fitzpatrick

General Treasury Inquiries: Deb Fitzpatrick

Endowment Distributions: Jeff Cheeseman 

Payroll Check Inquiries: Jeff Cheeseman

Paylocity Helpdesk: Jennifer Gardanier

Conference Church Donation Inquiries: Jennifer Gardanier

Qualified Charitable Distributions and Stock Donation Inquiries: Jennifer Gardanier

Employee Moving Benefits: Jennifer Gardanier


Contacting Treasury: General Email - Any payroll related questions or to submit timesheets - For submitting your remittance reports or any related inquiries - General/Billing questions for Treasury


Name Email Work Phone
Brenda Nelson 231-878-6017
Brendan Mattson 517-316-1572
Deb Fitzpatrick 517-316-1545
Jeff Cheeseman 517-316-1533
Jennifer Gardanier 517-316-1532
Joel Nephew 517-316-1524
Mike Bernard 517-316-1545
Mona Hickman 517-316-1507
Tom Owiti 517-316-1547