baby under purple blanket

Leadership

Our Mission is simple:
Taking Recourse
exists to research, share and be actively engaged in the ongoing discussion and resolution of the use of aborted fetal cell lines in today’s vaccine, pharmaceutical and consumer products. We seek to follow faithfully and humbly the guidance put forth by the Vatican in 2005.

Meet The Team

Yvonne Bontkowski
Founder & Executive Director

Yvonne Bontkowski was was born in 1967 in Chicago Illinois and raised in a devout immigrant Polish Catholic family.  In 2002 she joined the prolife organization, Children of God for Life as a Research Official  until her retirement in 2020.  During that time, she assisted with investigating vaccines and other medicines that either contained or utilized aborted fetal material in their development and production.  In addition, she helped uncover the gruesome details of the numerous abortions involved as scientists very casually and  graphically described the details and methods used to obtain fresh organs and tissues.

Yvonne founded the new organizationTaking Recoursein faithful obedience to the admonition of the Pontifical Academy for Life, which stated in 2005 that there is a duty to “take recourse” to moral alternatives and to make one’s protest known to the pharmaceutical industry in order put an end to the gross exploitation of aborted children in scientific research.  Her work is focused on educating the public regarding both previous and current research on vaccines, medicines and other consumer products produced using aborted fetal cell lines.

She is currently a homeschooling mom of 8 children, married 31 years to her recently retired US Marine husband, Sean, and resides in southwest Wisconsin.


Michelle VerBurg
Co-Founder & Director of Advancement

Michelle is Co-founder of Taking Recourse. Being born in 1973 after the passage of Roe vs. Wade, and along with her deeply held pro-life convictions due to her Catholic faith, Michelle is a passionate advocate against the use of aborted fetal tissue or embryonic materials in medicine.

She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Family and Consumer Sciences with a Child Development and Family Studies Option from California State University, Long Beach and a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from Concordia University.

She was the founding Media Advisor for Children of God for Life in 2008, until 2020. Born on Long Island, New York. Her and her husband along with their 5 children currently reside in Southern California.

Amanda Miller
Director of Marketing & Communications

Amanda Miller is a native of Clearwater, Florida. She graduated from the University of Notre Dame prior to serving as an officer in the United States Army. During her service in the Army, Amanda worked in an array of positions including as a public affairs officer. She has been married 17 years with four children ages 6-16. Her family has traveled the world and lived all over the country, including Alaska and Hawaii.

Following her Army service, Amanda established her own business as a photographer. She has employed her skills as a photographer professionally and continues to offer her photography services on a voluntary basis supporting her local schools and community events. Amanda is a long-time advocate for the rights of the unborn. She has worked with numerous advocacy groups and with the Catholic Church to promote life.

Inducted into the Order of Our Lady of Loreto, Amanda made significant contributions on the home front in support of the Army Aviation community. She has been recognized with a Commander’s Award for outstanding volunteer service and was also recognized by the Commanding General of United States Army Hawaii with the “Na Koa” Award for outstanding volunteer service.

Fr. Michael Copenhagen
Spiritual Director

We are blessed to welcome Fr. Michael Copenhagen to our Board as Spiritual Director.  Father is the Pastor of St. Nicholas the Wonder Worker Melkite Greek Catholic Church in Rochester NY.  He has been a teacher at Chesterton Academy of Rochester since 2014 and has taught high school, middle school, and fourth grade, at St. John Bosco Schools since 2012.

Father holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the University of Scranton and Bachelor of Sacred Theology from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas.  He has spoken out at rallies defending religious freedom and the right to abstain from using aborted fetal vaccines.

In December 2019 he provided testimony opposing NJ S2173 in defense of religious freedom.  He was also video interviewed by Jim Havens program The Simple Truth on Station of the Cross radio network https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?ref=watch_permalink&v=195776305803223 

Father has also published several articles, including Restore Ye To Its Owners – on the Immorality of Receiving Vaccines Derived from Abortion

ARINA O. GROSSU
Advisory Board Member

Arina O. Grossu, M.A., M.S., is a Fellow with the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism.  She focuses on the protection of human dignity, human rights, and the sanctity of human life from fertilization to natural death. She is a guest contributor at Charlotte Lozier Institute and an author at the National Catholic Register.  She is a member of a bioethics working group at the Heritage Foundation.  Ms. Grossu is a member of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities and a member of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars.

Ms. Grossu is the founder and principal at Areté Global Consulting, a boutique consulting company dedicated to strategic communications, policy and bioethics, strategic partnerships, and organizational vision advancement.

Ms. Grossu is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame with a B.A. in Philosophy. She earned her M.S. in Bioethics from the University of Mary and an M.A. in Theology, magna cum laude, from the Dominican House of Studies. She is also certified in Health Care Ethics through the National Catholic Bioethics Center. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Bioethics.

During the Trump Administration, Ms. Grossu worked as a Senior Communications Advisor at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in the Office for Civil Rights, protecting conscience, religious freedom rights, and civil rights in healthcare.  She is the former Director of the Center for Human Dignity at the Family Research Council where she was a spokeswoman and policymaker on life and human dignity issues. Ms. Grossu has done television interviews on CNN, ABC, BBC, Fox News, EWTN, and CBN. Her articles and commentary have appeared in USA Today, LA Times, National Review, Bloomberg, Townhall, The Federalist, Washington Times, Daily Signal, Washington Examiner, National Catholic Register, Daily Caller, Christian Post, and others.

Debi Vinnedge
Advisory Board Member

Debi Vinnedge is the recently retired founder of Children of God for Life, a pro-life organization whose mission focused on use of aborted fetal material in vaccines, medicines and consumer products. Under her direction, the organization provided assistance and educational materials throughout the United States and to over 50 foreign countries.

Ms. Vinnedge is a nationally recognized author and speaker and has provided written testimony for Congressional hearings on embryonic stem cell research. She introduced the Fair Labeling and Informed Consent Act to members of the US House and Senate, legislation that protects religious rights, moral conscience and requires informed consent and labeling on medical products using aborted fetal or embryonic materials.

She has appeared on both local and national television programs and has been a guest speaker on major national television and radio broadcasts, including Fox News’ Hannity & Colmes, Vatican Radio, Ave Maria Radio, EWTN, Human Life International and Living His Life Abundantly. Her work has been featured in leading Catholic publications such as Our Sunday Visitor, New Covenant Magazine, EWTN Question and Answers, EWTN’s Ethics in Healthcare, American Life League’s Celebrate Life, the National Catholic Register, Human Life International Reports and numerous diocesan newsletters and periodicals, including the Vatican’s Medicini e Morale.

Ms. Vinnedge was the recipient of the Catholic Medical Association’s 2014 Evangelium Vitae award for her pro-life efforts.