Theodore Ash, Sr. was one of the first Directors of the FBC, being the only known Director to have been assigned by the government rather than the Board. His son, Dr. Theodore Ash, Jr., worked as the Head of Research at the time, having been assigned to the role by Ash Sr., though Ash Jr. initially had a negative relationship with his father.
Ash Sr. lived in a "esoteric world" according to his son, and was devoted to and in awe of sacred places. As such, he dedicated his life to searching for a place of power similar to the Oldest House.
Ash Sr. died of unknown causes just over a week before the discovery of the Oldest House. Broderick Northmoor, whom he had nominated as his successor, became the next Director of the FBC and led the expedition into the Oldest House, taking Ash Jr. with him. Northmoor later connected with the Board and "gained their approval" as Director, going on to call Ash Sr. and the rest of the Directors before him shams for not having the Board's backing.
Meanwhile, Ash Jr. came to view Northmoor as nothing more than Ash Sr.'s "shade in a cheap suit". In his time in the Foundation, he came to understand his father's views and devotion to the esoteric world, and thanked him for "setting [him] on this path" to discover his life's purpose.