Among other things, David Sells is a lay minister, a sailor, a saxophone player, an IT developer—and above all, a father to three adopted sons.

Long before they were married at City Hall in San Francisco in 2008, David and his partner Yann Jourvenot talked about raising a family together. It took them years of classes, background checks, home visits, and piles of paperwork before they became “certified” as foster parents. In the process, there were many children’s profiles to review, and all of them touched their hearts. But one story in particular shined through, and without even seeing a photo, they knew they had found their son. Their boy Albert joined them at 10 months old.

A few months later they learned that Albert had a new little brother, so they opened their hearts and home to Thomas, at just 10 days old. Three years later a third brother, James, was born and they welcomed him home at 13 days old.

“One thing I had to learn early on is patience.  With three boys and two dogs in our house, things can get a little chaotic at times,” said David. But there is no shortage of love. “I can say absolutely, the love for my boys is just as deep as I am sure any biological parent would feel,” says David. The boys, now 10, 9 and 6, go to Robert Semple Elementary, where David is an active member of the PTG, having served as VP and treasurer. The boys have many interests: martial arts, Pokémon, basketball, soccer and Cub Scouts, to name a few. And David and Yann have been right there as coaches, referees, pack leaders and supporters in every way.

Luckily, David has the flexibility to work from home in his role as Applications Developer for AT&T, where he’s survived numerous mergers. “I’m lucky to work with a company that gives us opportunities,” says David. “I’ve been fascinated with the development and IT side of the business, so I have developed myself into that role and have now been with the company 20 years.”

David’s parents are doting grandparents who live in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he grew up. David played alto and tenor saxophone during college at the University of New Mexico, and his band was popular at weddings. “It was Albuquerque’s own little version of The Wedding Singer.” His husband Yann has a doctorate in genetics and works as a Marketing Manager for Bio-Rad Laboratories. He grew up in Venezuela and France, and the boys visit extended family in France and New Mexico as often as possible.

Still, the family’s roots grow deeper here in Benicia. On the weekends, they sail their boat around the bay, and they are active parishioners at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.  David is with the church’s vestry, and is a Lay Eucharistic Minister.

When asked about the rewards of fatherhood, David says, “For me, the deepest reward is just the miracle of our family and how we came to be. I am so thankful every day for the blessings in my life. I enjoy watching each one of them, with their successes, as they develop into amazing little men.”