We’ll be adding bios for our 2018 Summit Tennessee faculty to this page as they’re confirmed. Keep checking back for the latest!
Note: Not all speakers will be present at both Summit Tennessee sessions this summer.
Alan Shlemon is a public speaker and author for Stand to Reason, an organization that trains Christians to share their convictions in a persuasive, yet gracious and friendly way. Alan has a unique ability to make complex issues accessible to anyone and is known for teaching on some of the most controversial issues of our time like abortion, evolution, homosexuality, bioethics, and Islam. He has been a guest on both TV and radio and has spoken to thousands of adults and students across the country at churches, conferences, and college campuses. Alan received his master’s degree in apologetics from Biola University.
Alycia Wood graduated from Roberts Wesleyan College with a degree in Criminal Justice and from Marygrove College with a Master’s in Social Justice. She spent two years as a Fellow with RZIM in New England. Alycia’s speaking background is quite diverse. From universities (such as MIT, UCONN, Harvard, University of Massachusetts, Boston University, Dartmouth College, and Brown University), to retreats, from conferences to men’s and women’s prisons, Alycia has addressed major issues surrounding faith to diverse audiences.
Additionally, she has traveled to countries such as Haiti, Honduras, the Dominican Republic, and Jamaica, volunteering at soup kitchens and orphanages as her passions for “showing Christ” extends beyond her local environment.
In her spare time, Alycia enjoys music and is a lover of all things football and hockey.
Dr. Bill Brown is the Senior Fellow for Worldview and Culture at the Colson Center for Christian Worldview. Dr. Brown speaks and writes about how Christians should engage the culture with the heart and mind of Christ. He has served as the President of two Christian universities and spoken in over two dozen countries. He is the Executive Producer and teacher of the multiple award-winning DVD series, reView, a worldview curriculum for high schoolers and adults that continues to influence new generations of Christians. He consults with international corporations and ministries on employee development, cultural transitions and strategic planning.
In addition to his extensive speaking schedule, Dr. Brown serves as the Senior Executive of WorldAPP, an international technology firm with offices in Boston, Kiev and London.
Dr. Brown has written over one hundred articles for journals, magazines, newspapers and encyclopedias. He is the author of Making Sense of Your Faith, Where Have All the Dreamers Gone? Observations from a Biblical Worldview, and Making Sense of Your World, a book used by many colleges and universities as an introductory text to worldview/philosophical thinking. His writings have been quoted in various national newspapers and magazines, including Reader’s Digest and Christianity Today. He wrote over fifty articles and notes for Impact: The Student Leadership Study Bible. He also serves as an editor for philosophy textbooks and ethics curriculum.
Bobby Conway is lead pastor of LIFE Fellowship Church near Charlotte, NC. He is a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary (ThM), Southern Evangelical Seminary (DMin), and a PhD candidate for the University of Birmingham in England. Bobby is the author of Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die?, The Fi5th Gospel, Doubting Towards Faith, and Does God Really Exist?. He is also the founder and host of the One-Minute Apologist (www.oneminuteapologist.com). In addition, Bobby and his wife, Heather, serve on the Family Life “Weekend to Remember” marriage conference speaking team.
Brett Kunkle is the Student Impact Director at Stand to Reason. He has more than 18 years of experience working with junior high, high school, and college students. Brett has spoken to thousands of students and adults across the country at churches, conferences and on college campuses. Brett was a contributor to the Apologetics Study Bible for Students, has a chapter on truth in Apologetics for a New Generation, and wrote the Ambassador’s Guide to Mormonism. In addition, he has developed a groundbreaking approach to mission trips, creating a one-of-a-kind training experience that immerses participants in real-life apologetics, theology, and evangelism. Brett is currently completing a master’s degree in philosophy of religion and ethics at Talbot School of Theology.
Dr. Christopher Yuan has taught the Bible at Moody Bible Institute for over eight years and his speaking ministry on faith and sexuality has reached five continents. He speaks in conferences (such as The Gospel Coalition, Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, InterVarsity’s Urbana and the Moody Pastors’ Conferences and Men’s Conference), on college campuses and in churches (such as Saddleback Church and Willow Creek Community Church). He has co-authored with his mother their memoir, Out of a Far Country: A Gay Son’s Journey to God, A Broken Mother’s Search for Hope and he is also the author of Giving a Voice to the Voiceless. Christopher graduated from Moody Bible Institute in 2005, Wheaton College Graduate School in 2007 with a Master of Arts in Biblical Exegesis and received his doctorate of ministry in 2014 from Bethel Seminary.
Jason Jimenez is a pastor, apologist and national speaker who reaches millions of people with his Viral Truth TV show each week, and is the author of The Raging War of Ideas: How to Take Back Our Faith, Family, and Country, The Bible’s Answers to 100 of Life’s Biggest and Stand Strong America: Courage, Freedom and Hope for Tomorrow.
Dr. Jeff Myers is president of Summit Ministries. In the last 20 years Dr. Myers has become one of America’s most respected authorities on youth leadership development. Focus on the Family founder James Dobson referred to him as “a very gifted and inspirational young leader.” Evangelist Josh McDowell called him “a man who is 100% sold out to preparing the next generation to reflect the character of Christ in the culture.” Through his appearances on Fox News and other media programs, Dr. Myers has become a fresh voice offering humor and insight from a Christian worldview.
He holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree and teaches leadership courses through CollegePlus and Belhaven University. Jeff and his family live in Colorado.
A vice president of The Heritage Foundation, Jennifer A. Marshall runs the think tank’s Institute for Family, Community, and Opportunity. In that capacity, she oversees research into a variety of issues that determine the strength and character of American society. Issues explored by Institute researchers range from marriage, life, and religious liberty to health, education, and welfare to the application of America’s founding principles to today’s challenges.
Josh Bales is equal parts singer/songwriter, pastor, and private practice mental health therapist. He holds an M.Div. and M.A. in Counseling from Reformed Theological Seminary, as well as a Certificate in Anglican Studies from Nashotah House Theological Seminary. Originally from Chattanooga, TN Josh now resides in Orlando, FL. Josh’s music has gained a following of fans from all walks of life after recording four diverse albums and touring for more than 15 years. In 2006 Josh released “Underneath The Armor” (Only The Sinner, A Hymn For All The World, Ten Thousand Places). In 2012 Josh’s fans funded “Count The Stars,” an album recorded with multi-award winning producer, Ed Cash. In 2014 Josh released a Christmas album, “The Holly & The Ivy.” And in 2015, in addition to “Somehow I Knew,” Josh issued a collection of hymns and sacred songs called “The Birds Their Carols Raise.” Josh currently serves as Canon Priest at the Cathedral Church of Saint Luke in Orlando and is working on a second collection of hymns.
Dr. Kathy Koch (“cook”), the Founder and President of Celebrate Kids, Inc., based in Fort Worth, TX, has influenced thousands of parents, teachers, and children in 30 countries through keynote messages, seminars, chapels, and other events.
She is a featured speaker for the Great Homeschool Conventions and a regular presenter for Care Net, Summit Ministries, and other organizations. She speaks regularly at schools, churches, and pregnancy resource centers. She is also a popular guest on Focus on the Family radio and other radio talk-shows. Kirk Cameron chose her as the technology expert to interview in his movie, Connect: Real Help for Parenting Kids in a Social Media World. She has authored six books including four published by Moody Publishers.
Dr. Kathy’s practical, relevant, and results-oriented concepts and engaging, honoring, and humorous speaking style draw enthusiastic raves from children, teens, parents, and educators. They leave her events armed with new beliefs, attitudes, practical tools, and increased hope to build healthy relationships and increase success in family, life, and school.
Dr. Kathy earned a Ph.D. in reading and educational psychology from Purdue University. She was a tenured associate professor of education at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, a teacher of second graders, a middle school coach, and a school board member prior to becoming a full-time conference and keynote speaker in 1991. She has loved Jesus for years and her faith and desire to serve and glorify God is the foundation of her ministry.
Mark Mittelberg is a bestselling author, international speaker, and the Executive Director of the Center for Strategic Evangelism, in partnership with Houston Baptist University. His books include Questions Christians Hope No One Will Ask (With Answers), Confident Faith, and The Reason Why Faith Makes Sense. He is also the primary author of the Becoming a Contagious Christian training course, which has been translated into more than 20 languages and helped nearly two million people around the world learn to share their faith in natural ways. Mark was the first evangelism director at Willow Creek Community Church, a megachurch in Chicago.
Mark lives in a house in the woods of Colorado with his wife Heidi, and they are the parents of Matthew and Emma Jean Mittelberg, both alumni of Summit’s Student Conferences.
Matthew Lee Anderson is the Founder and Lead Writer at Mere Orthodoxy. He is the author of Earthen Vessels: Why our Bodies Matter to our Faith and The End of our Exploring: A Book about Questioning and the Confidence of Faith. He is also the author of a number of articles and essays away from Mere Orthodoxy, of which there is a selection below.
Anderson is currently pursuing a D.Phil. in Christian Ethics from Oxford University, having received his M.Phil. in 2014. He is also a Perpetual Member of Biola University’s Torrey Honors Institute. He invites you to follow him on Twitter or Facebook.
Michael C. Sherrard is a pastor, the director of Ratio Christi College Prep, the author of Relational Apologetics, and musician that has released several albums and contributed to many others.
Mike has a B.A. in Religion and a Masters of Divinity with a concentration in Apologetics from Luther Rice Seminary, and is a currently doing post-grad work in the area of New Testament Ethics.
Mike has a passion for equipping Christians with the knowledge necessary to love God deeply, defend their hope in Him faithfully, and engage culture effectively.
Upon getting his doctorate in 1993, Dr. Mike Adams, then an atheist and a Democrat, was hired by UNC-Wilmington to teach in the criminal justice program. A few years later, Adams abandoned his atheism and also became a Republican. He also nearly abandoned teaching when he took a one-year leave of absence to study law at UNC-Chapel Hill in 1998. After returning to teach at UNC-Wilmington, Mike Adams won the Faculty Member of the Year award (issued by the Office of the Dean of Students) for the second time in 2000. After his involvement in a well-publicized free speech controversy in the wake of the 911 terror attacks, Mike Adams became a vocal critic of the diversity movement in academia.
Dr. Adams has since made appearances on shows like Hannity and Colmes, The O’Reilly Factor, and Glenn Beck. He published his first book, Welcome to the Ivory Tower of Babel, in 2004. His second book, Feminists Say the Darndest Things: A Politically Incorrect Professor Confronts “Womyn” On Campus, was published in 2008. In addition to lecturing on the First Amendment, Mike Adams is actively involved in legal challenges to campus censorship. Represented by the ADF, he won a landmark First Amendment case before the 4th Circuit in Richmond, Virginia. Decided in 2011, Adams v UNCW held that professors publishing columns and giving speeches have the full protection of the First Amendment when discussing matters of public concern. Hence, when professors report such activities as part of their annual review, tenure, or promotion materials, the university does not have license to discriminate on the basis of the professors’ viewpoint.
Dr. Adams’ latest book, Letters to a Young Progressive, was published in April 2013.
Dr. Paul Boling is professor of philosophy and Christian Thought at Bryan College. He has published book reviews in scholarly and popular journals; he is also active in several professional societies, as well as being a published musical composer. Dr. Boling is active in a discipling ministry and he speaks at churches, conferences, and retreats. He is currently working on a book project with a colleague on the subject of humor. He holds a B.A. degree in zoology from the University of California at Berkeley, a Th.M. degree from Dallas Theological Seminary, and an M.A. and Ph.D. degree in philosophy from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. He and his wife Lauralee have five children and live in Dayton, Tennessee.
Ricky Chelette is Executive Director of Living Hope Ministries and the Minister of Pastoral Ministries at First Baptist Church in Arlington, TX. Ricky has been involved in ministry in the church for over 30 years. He has served as a pastor to youth, students, and single adults, as well as Minister of Education. Speaking around the world to thousands of teens and adults who struggle with their sexual identity or love those who do, Ricky brings vast experience and personal knowledge to this difficult and controversial subject. His logical, humorous and straight-forward approach makes sense of a very complex and often confusing topic. Ricky has a BA in Political Science/Pre-Law, a Master in Religious Education, has taught on the college and seminary level, and is an ordained minister.
Scott Klusendorf is President of Life Training Institute where he equips pro-life advocates to make a persuasive case for life.
He has taught pro-life apologetics at the graduate level at Biola University and Trinity Law School, and lectured at over 80 colleges and universities including Stanford, Berkeley, UCLA, USC, Johns Hopkins, MIT, and the U.S. Air Force Academy — to name a few.
Scott’s debate opponents have included Nadine Strossen (former President of the ACLU), attorney Edward Tabash (of the Council for Secular Humanism), attorney Kathryn Kolbert (who argued for abortion rights at the Supreme Court), and Katherine Kneer (President of Planned Parenthood California).
Nationally, he’s been featured on syndicated shows such as Focus on the Family, Truths that Transform, Issues Etc, and Faith Under Fire. He is the host of the television series, “Life is Best.” Scott is the author of The Case for Life: Equipping Christians to Engage the Culture (Crossway, 2009).
Scott is a graduate of UCLA and holds a Master’s degree in Christian Apologetics from Biola University.
At the practical level, Scott helps non-profit organizations raise money to assist women facing unplanned pregnancies.
He and his wife Stephanie have been married since 1985 and have four children.
Tim is a dynamic speaker who provides a perfect blend of expertise and humor in each talk. Using easy-to-follow and visually engaging presentations, Tim trains Christians to think clearly about what they believe and why they believe it. Tim’s passion and energy will help motivate you and your group to love God with all your mind.
Before joining the Stand to Reason speaking team, Tim founded an apologetics-based speaking ministry. Through his speaking, he has been able to help make a powerful impact defending and contending for the faith both in church settings as well as on the university stage. He has also had the opportunity to speak at numerous ACSI conferences, Power to Change events, the Apologetics Canada conference, and the National Conference on Christian Apologetics.
Tim has worked as a professional teacher since 2008, employed in both the private and public sector.
Tim has bachelor’s degrees in physics and education from York University and the University of Ontario, respectively. He is currently working on his master’s degree in philosophy from Southern Evangelical Seminary.
Tim lives with his wife and three children in Ontario, Canada.
Travis C. Barham, Esq., serves as legal counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom, where he plays a key role with the ADF Center for Academic Freedom.
Since joining Alliance Defending Freedom in 2006, Barham has focused his legal efforts on preserving and reclaiming religious freedom and freedom of speech for students and faculty at universities throughout the country. His work has been instrumental in securing several strategic appellate court victories. For example, in Adams v. Trustees of the University of North Carolina-Wilmington, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit ruled that public universities cannot discriminate or retaliate against Christian and conservative professors in promotion decisions. In Badger Catholic v. Walsh, the 7th Circuit ensured that public universities must grant religious student organizations equal access when distributing student activity fee funding. And in DeJohn v. Temple University, the 3rd Circuit eliminated an unconstitutional speech code that restricted Christian and conservative students from speaking freely on campus.
Barham earned his J.D. in 2006 from Washington and Lee University School of Law, where he graduated summa cum laude. Before graduating from law school, he completed the Alliance Defending Freedom leadership development program to become a Blackstone Fellow in 2004. He is a member of the bars of the U.S. Supreme Court; the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 4th, 7th, and 11th Circuits; and in the states of Georgia and Arizona. He is also admitted to federal district courts in Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Michigan, and Wisconsin.