The Whiteheads began their missionary service with MAF in Nicaragua in 1993. They then served in Venezuela and after 11 years, accepted an assignment as Program Manager in Shell, Ecuador, in 2005. Four years later the MAF program in Ecuador transitioned to a national program, and Dan was very involved in that transition. After a four-year stint as the Regional Director for MAF in Latin America, Dan returned to working fulltime with the MAF national affiliate in Ecuador, Alas de Socorro del Ecuador (ADSE). ADSE continues the service that MAF began in Ecuador almost 70 years ago. In 2018 Dan and Tracey returned to the U.S. to work from MAF headquarters, supporting the field programs as the chief operations officer. Dan shares, “I keep returning to God’s promise in Isaiah 41:10 when I start to worry or fret about things. He is the One who keeps me and gives me strength.” Away from the hangar, he enjoys making music and being involved in the local church.
Tracey has been involved in a multitude of ministries, in addition to creating a loving Christian home for her family. She has done flight following of the airplanes on the radio, worked at their small mission schools, given many, many tours of the Nate Saint house in Shell, and provided lots of hospitality to those visiting our programs. She also enjoyed participating in the ladies’ Bible studies that are always available in the mission community and being involved as a teacher for kids at local churches they attended. Tracey loves Mark 12:30, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” Her goal is to love the Lord with all her being.
Dan grew up in Iowa and Tracey in Virginia. Both had Christian families and accepted Christ as young children. They met while they were participating in the Continental Singers, a Christian singing group. Tracey says, “During our time with the Continental Singers, God was preparing us for a future in missions. We can look back and see how God used that time to teach us about missions, other cultures, and ways we could be used to serve overseas.”
Dan attended the Advanced Studies Program at Moody Bible Institute and earned his commercial pilot’s license with instrument rating and maintenance ratings at Moody Aviation in Tennessee. Dan and Tracey married while Dan was attending Moody Aviation and Tracey took Bible correspondence courses there. They have three children, Jake, Nick, and Lydia, who have grown up in Latin America.
God calls the men and women of MAF to serve Him in unique ways. He may also be calling you to a special role in the Whiteheads’ ministry. Please prayerfully consider becoming a ministry partner with them through prayer and/or financial support.
The U.S. offices of MAF serve as a hub for MAF services worldwide. A day in the life here includes specialized flight training, staff mobilization and counseling, purchasing and shipping of aircraft parts, finance and accounting, administration of an Internet gateway for worldwide email, fund raising, printing and mailing of various materials, and many, many more activities. Some staff serve around the country; training future pilots and mobilizing potential candidates to serve with MAF.
MAF missionaries raise support for a pooled fund out of which MAF covers salary, housing, benefits, and staff-related ministry expenses. MAF exercises discretion over the use of missionary support in the exercise of its mission and care of its staff.