Meet the Team

Meet the Team — Reatrey

Reatrey (pronounced “Ree-a-try”) is another one of our local interns who has been with us nearly since the office opened. He is an architecture student who is just finishing up the last portfolio project he needs for his undergraduate degree. And let me tell you — this guy knows how to sketch a design!

Reatrey working with a volunteer architect on a project trip

Reatrey loves learning idioms and cultural expressions in English, which can be a lot of fun. (The other week, we got into a discussion of when it is acceptable to call someone a “nerd”.)

Reatrey has a faith that’s really mature for his age. As much fun as it is to explain something to him, it’s even better to hear him share about his life and faith. Young leaders like Reatrey are a perfect example of our discipleship focus here — we can’t wait to see how God uses his life!

Meet the Team

Meet the Team — Lydeth

So sorry everyone — in all of the news and events we’ve had to share this fall, I never finished introducing our team here in Cambodia!

So today, meet Lydeth (pronounced “Lee-Date”). He’s a recent civil engineering graduate who has been working with us since the office opened in April. Since then, he’s been an instrumental part of many of our projects — the airfield in Myanmar, the surveying during Laura’s trip to the Noah’s Ark project, the school, and others. He’s one of the bright young Khmer who make it so easy to be excited about Cambodia’s future!

Lydeth (left) and Reatrey working with our surveying equipment

Lydeth and I are in a core discipleship group (together with Nivo), so we’ve gotten lots of chances to talk through life, faith, and the bible. He’s full of good questions, always eager to learn and understand more than before. Despite his young faith, I’m always amazed (and challenged) by how deeply he thinks about the convictions he holds, and how he wants to reconcile those fully with his life.

One last item — he’s also the only other person I’ve ever met who expresses a love of “post-rock” music (think epic instrumental themes on electric instruments). So that’s pretty cool!

So keep an eye out for Lydeth — chances are good that he’ll keep showing up!

Meet the Team, Updates

Meet the Team — Nivo

Nivo is another new member of our team here in Cambodia.

He comes to fill a major role as our first architect, and highly recommended at that! Nivo has been a critical part of big projects for organizations across Cambodia in the past few years — hospitals and schools. From design to coordinating on the ground — Nivo knows how things get done in Cambodia.

But it’s his heart that has us most excited about adding him to the team. A lot like many of the others, Nivo wrestled with reconciling his faith and his future during his teenage years. He wanted to serve God — but knew that being a pastor wasn’t the right fit. Architecture was, but through school and into his early career, he held on to a promise that his life would have impacts around the world. Now, with EMI, he’ll be a part of exactly that.


Please join me in welcoming Nivo and his family to the EMI Cambodia team!

Meet the Team

Meet the Team — Neth

As I mentioned in our last email newsletter, we’re excited to begin introducing our Khmer team members. Back in January 2017, five families from North America stepped off their planes and began lives in Cambodia. Laura and I joined them later that year. But the goal was never to have a bunch of westerners living and working in Phnom Penh by ourselves. From the beginning, we knew that we both deeply desired and really needed to find Khmer team members with the same heart for using design to serve God’s people.

Enter Neth (pronounced Nate).

Neth has been a part of our team for several months now, and I can honestly say we wouldn’t be anywhere near as far along as an organization without him. He’s officially our Office Administrator, which means he does everything. Whether it was navigating the legal documents we needed, helping find and prepare the office (including pulling lots and lots of network cable), being our go-to cultural and language expert, or literally dozens of other things, he’s been a huge help!


But beyond how critical to the team he has been, Neth and his wife Ata (plus daughter Natasha) are fantastic people as well. The faith, joy, and devotion that shows in their lives is unmistakable. I really hope we’ll get a chance to tell their story in another blog post.

I’d be remiss not to mention that Neth and Ata both have a big heart for worship music, and lead worship teams at a thriving church here in Phnom Penh. They actually just released a new album — here’s one of the songs: