Jose and Julie Moreno
Jose and Julie are the Co-Founders of Casa De Vida. In March of 2005, Jose and his wife Julie founded Casa De Vida with the goal of helping individuals and their families overcome the problems of chemical dependence.
Jose was a heroin addict for about 35 years. He was introduced to drugs and gangs at age 14 and was incarcerated for the first time at 15. In 1997. Jose tuned his life over to Christ and the transformation has led him to receive a certificate in Addictive Disorders Studies at Oxnard College. Throughout the years successfully helped many individuals overcome their struggles with alcoholism and drug addiction. Jose passed away in 2018 due to illness.
Julie is a retired elementary school teacher with a master’s degree in Education and taught for 34 years. Julie is a Certified Addiction Treatment Counselor and serves as the CEO for Casa De Vida.
Board of Directors
Barry Brown, a Jew born anew in 1982. I was born in Toronto, Canada in 1947. My family moved to California in 1951. In 1982 my eyes and heart were opened, and Jesus invited me to follow HIM. I was delivered from my addictions; and HE continues to bring victories in my life today! My personal struggles and experience with addiction have been instrumental and a great motivation for me being involved with the Casa De Vida Ministry since 1996. That’s when I met my dear brother Jose Moreno, Casa De Vida’s co-founder. It has been a true blessing to serve THE LORD as a Board member for all these years at Casa De Vida. I received JESUS as my MESSIAH in 1982, and My Life changed forever. It’s wonderful and beautiful to see the men at Casa De Vida engage with JESUS and find healing and victory in their lives!
Cindy moved to Ventura County in 1990 with the single-minded purpose of overcoming her addiction to alcohol. She has maintained her sobriety since that time and credits the staff of Miracle Recovery Centers for her own recovery. She served as a staff member of MRC in 1991-1992 and joined their Board of Directors in 1993, where she served for 12 years.
Cindy has been involved with Casa De Vida since its inception, both as a Board Member and donor. She currently serves as Board Secretary. Additionally, Cindy fills the role of administrative assistant at Finding Something More, a non-profit, Christian-based organization for women in Orange County.
Professionally, Cindy’s career has taken her from Wall Street to the legal, insurance and pharmaceutical industries. Retiring from Amgen in 2017, where she worked as Senior Executive Assistant in Translational Sciences, she now pursues her love of travel, gardening, and reading.
She will tell you that her life is blessed, that she was saved by the grace of God and the love of Jesus, and that her faith and sobriety are the basis of everything that is good in her life: a loving, close-knit family with two amazing sons and two beautiful granddaughters, two talented and fun-loving sisters, many wonderful nieces, nephews and cousins, a cherished aunt, as well as treasured friends.
Rick and I both grew up in Ventura. We have been married 46 years and are blessed with three grown sons, 3 daughter in laws and four grandchildren.
We first became involved with Casa de Vida in 1975 while attending Ventura Missionary Church. The church was conducting home Bible studies going through Romans 10. We held a group at our home inviting the Casa de Vida clients. That is where we met a fellow board member, Michele Ming. After that ended we went to the Casa de Vida home and held Bible studies for some time.
We have hearts for those struggling with addictions because of some family members and their struggles.
We love the Lord and now fellowship at Catalyst Church in Santa Paula. We consider it an honor and a privilege to be serving on the Casa de Vida board.
Michelle Ming’s parents divorced when she was 12 years old. She went to live with her father and was often responsible for the care of her siblings. At 15, she began drinking. Soon she was married to a heroin addict, and it wasn’t long before she tried the drug herself and fell into addiction. What followed was years spent in and out of jail. As a result, she was forced to allow her mom and stepdad to raise her son.
In 2010, Michelle was facing an eight-year prison term, but she was mercifully given the option to enter a program instead. It was then that she ran into Jose Moreno of Casa De Vida Recovery Program. She asked him if he would accept her into this faith based ministry so that she could avoid prison. Michelle entered Casa De Vida (which means “House of Life”); they brought her to Ventura Missionary Church, and things have never the same since. Her dad had tried to get her to go to church over the years, and once in a while she would go, but this time Michelle says, “I was ready!”
Today Michelle’s life has come full circle. She lives with her dad, her son and her 8- and 12-year-old grand kids. She didn’t get to raise her son, but through God’s goodness she is now helping to raise her grandchildren. She also has a successful business as a “handy woman.” Michelle says, “Before when I would get angry, I would turn to drugs. Now, when I get angry, I talk to God.” When we are ready, God has an amazing way of restoring us. Sometimes He even gives us back some of the things that we lost. Michelle overflows with the love of Jesus because of what He has done for her…and she is eager to share that love. She says, “When I think of how things are now, it takes my breath away!” Michelle now serves as a member of the Board of Directors for Casa De Vida.
Besides fulfilling his responsibilities of being a single Dad, he is happy to say he serves as a Casa de Vida (CDV) board member. George also graciously serves at Ventura Missionary Church (VMC) where he and his daughters have attended since 2011. He started serving as an usher, and with his passion to minister youth he became a youth group leader, along with these accomplishments he is also a VMC member and a Deacon at VMC.
There have been some life changing moments for him, and he owes it all to God first and foremost, secondly to CDR. He had made some bad choices during his younger years, which led him on the wrong path in life. After hitting rock bottom, he found CDV and there he found God, his life changed drastically, he surrendered his life to Jesus and from there on he was a changed man, he was now on the right path in life, walking with God and he continues to trust, love and have faith in God, 11 years later!
George recently took a leap of faith, and decided to go back to school full-time, he is now enrolled at Ventura Community College, majoring in Psychology. Targeting to transfer to a university in 2023 to continue his education and receive his BS in Psychology in hopes to use his degree to give back to help those in need, gearing towards those struggling with substance dependency and family issues and behavior problems.
Two of George’s biggest blessings are his daughters, Esmi age 17 and Anavaeh age 12 George is a single father, doing an excellent job raising his two daughters to be respectable Godly young women.