History of the eSTAR Foundation
eSTAR Foundation was started by Dwight & Mary Kay Martin in August of 2009. Its origin, however, can actually be traced to 1948, when Dwight’s parents came to Thailand and were the first Protestant missionaries in Nakorn Phanom province. Dwight was born when his parents served in this remote province on the Mekong River and is where he would develop a connection with Thailand and its people.
After high school, Dwight left Thailand to attend college in the US. He married Mary Kay, started a business career, raised a family and received an MBA in Technology Management. Eventually, he cofounded a successful software company. Though away from Thailand for many years, he never forgot the place where he had grown up and, as had his parents, began to sense God’s call to serve the Thai people. In 2006 he and Mary Kay moved to Thailand.
The Martins quickly connected with the Church and people of Thailand due to Dwight already having a personal knowledge of the language and culture. He was able to establish some key relationships with leaders who had been impacted by his parents’ ministry. Using the business skill and experience gained from many years in the software industry, his initial focus was bringing “back to life” in digital form, thousands of Christian materials no longer accessible to the Thai people.
Within months of arriving in Thailand, the value of their work was recognized by Thai church leaders who asked Dwight to join them in other ministry projects; including maintaining the statistics on the church in Thailand. Many other ministry projects requiring the business and technical skills he possessed soon followed. This growth also increased Mary Kay’s ministry as she uses her background in library science and office experience to manage the office and serve as the ministry accountant. She has also been significantly involved in updating the Chiangmai Theological Seminary library and mentoring young ladies who work with her.
Dwight & Mary Kay are supported by Crossties Asia, a Birmingham, AL based non-profit.