Our First Lady
Ellyn Jo Waller, Ed.D., a native of Queens, New York, is the daughter of Robert and Ellen Payne. She is the partner in marriage and ministry of Rev. Dr. Alyn E. Waller, Senior Pastor of Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They are the proud parents of two beautiful adult daughters Elynn Morgan and Eryka Lynn. Ellyn Jo was educated in the New York City Public School system. She earned a Bachelor of Special Education from Ohio University, a Master of Education in Curriculum Instruction and Technology in Education, and Doctor of Education in Curriculum Instruction and Technology in Education with an emphasis in Literacy Education from Temple University. Ellyn has been employed as a Special Education Teacher in Kentucky, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Additionally, she has served as adjunct faculty in the College of Education at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Ellyn Jo has always been passionate about education and the empowerment of women. This is exemplified through her tireless efforts in combatting human trafficking through various means, both domestically and internationally. Ellyn is an active member of the Philadelphia Anti-Human Trafficking Coalition and serves as Co-Chair of the Religion Subcommittee. At Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church, she leads the Women’s Ministry, Sisters in Christ, which seeks to develop and strengthen the spiritual lives of women through monthly Bible studies, quarterly fellowship gatherings, annual retreats, and various outreach opportunities.
In 2011, Dr. Waller established an anti-human trafficking ministry at Enon Tabernacle, She’s My Sister. She’s My Sister seeks to raise awareness of human trafficking in the faith community, partners with the Greater Philadelphia Salvation Army by supporting their Drop-in center, participates in street outreach, and advocates on behalf of victims of human trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation. In October 2015, the ministry hosted its inaugural Anti-Human Trafficking Awareness 5K Walk/Run to raise funds for the development of a trauma-informed transitional residential program for young women exiting “The Life” and aging out of the child welfare system. Internationally, Dr. Waller regularly participates in rescue and restoration efforts in Italy and South Africa.
Dr. Waller is involved in many other notable endeavors. She is a member of The City School Board (Education Committee Chair), the Community College of Philadelphia Foundation Board, and the Comprehensive Sickle Cell Center at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia as an Ambassador of Hope, and she co-chairs the United Negro College Fund’s Delaware Valley Women of Faith for Education annual luncheon. Ellyn Jo, a member of the Philadelphia Chapter of the Links, Incorporated, serves as the National Human Trafficking Subcommittee Chair. She is the President of the Charitas Foundation, which is the philanthropic Waller family foundation established to positively impact the lives of individuals by sowing financial seeds into organizations that change lives through their missions.
Ellyn Jo is a woman of deep faith and is committed to the Lord Jesus Christ. She believes her first ministry is to her family by being supportive to her husband and daughters. She firmly believes God allows periods of influence and resource in our lives with the expectation that we will bless others, especially the less fortunate. It is her heart’s desire to please God and be a blessing in the lives of all whom she encounters.