Heart For Families

Board of Directors

Bruce & Carla Ferguson 

In 2004, Bruce and Carla Ferguson relocated their home from Alabama to Macon County after successful careers of providing environmental expertise to the pulp and paper industry. In 2013, they felt called to some form of marriage and family ministry as Carla was completing her Master of Arts degree in Professional Counseling from Liberty University. In 2014, as the Lord moved the hearts of numerous pastors toward the need for marriage and family ministry, Bruce and Carla accepted the call to help organize Heart for Families to implement the pastoral vision of the Marriage and Family Agreement signed by more than 30 pastors and ministers in the County.


After serving as the Heart for Families Executive Director for four years, Bruce is now applying his administrative and leadership spiritual gifts to strengthen marriage and family relationships. Carla uses her counseling expertise, relationship skills, and Biblical wisdom as a Licensed Professional Counselor. Both are evangelical Christians applying their beliefs to strengthen marriages and enhance family relationships through the Heart for Families and their personal daily walk with the Lord.

The board of directors meet quarterly and are responsible for our overall vision and direction.

Allen & Sarah Shearl

With roots that run deep in Western North Carolina, Allen and Sarah Shearl are natives to Macon County. Allen owns and operates Cornerstone Landscaping of WNC, Inc. in the Highlands/Cashiers area and Sarah is a stay-at-home mom to their two boys and helps operate Allen’s business. As high school sweethearts, they met in 2002 and were married in 2008 after graduating from Western Carolina University. They are active members of First Baptist Church of Franklin, NC. They have a passion for marriage and a strong family, but their utmost goal is to help the world, individuals and marriages find the answer they are all so desperately looking for. The answer is Jesus.

Tim & Esther Roots

Moving to the Franklin area in 2007 after serving as missionaries in several states, Latin America, and the Caribbean with YWAM for 18 years, the Roots were missionaries for more than 25 years. Their experience is family ministry, community development, church planting, and mentoring and working with youth. Prior to joining Heart for Families as Community Missionaries, both were Assistant Directors at the Christian Training Center International in Franklin, serving several roles in the Center operation for almost nine years. They have been married 23 years and have six children ranging in age from 9 to 21. They are currently involved in the Macon County Ministerial Association reaching out to both English- and Spanish-speaking area churches and leading community-wide training sessions for Heart for Families.