2015 Conference Featured Speakers

Debra Bell, Ph.D., is the best-selling author of the award-winning Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling, Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling Teens and the Ultimate Planners for moms, teens and students. Writers-in-Residence: A Writing-Focused Language Arts Program and Readers-in-Residence: A Literacy Program will be released in 2015, along with a companion website.

A former high school and college English teacher, Debra and her husband, Kermit, home educated their four children K through 12. All four are now married, degreed, employed, and they also love Jesus! She has been a keynote or featured speaker at numerous international and national venues for more than twenty years. In addition, she has provided expert testimony on homeschooling to the Pennsylvania House Education Committee, as well as numerous colleges and admissions offices. Debra and her sons were featured on NBC Nightly News for a story on homeschoolers and their participation in scholastic sports.

Debra holds a bachelor’s of science in communications education and a master’s degree in English. After homeschooling, she completed a Ph.D. in educational psychology at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA, where she held a teaching assistantship in the College of Education. Her responsibilities included training pre-service teachers in curriculum, instruction and technology. Her research interests include identifying how, why, and when homeschooling works; and she looks forward to using her training to better serve the homeschool community well into the future.

During her homeschooling years, Debra founded three homeschool co-ops which continue today (one for elementary, one for high school and one for drama). A pioneer in online education, today she is executive director and lead teacher for Aim Academy, which provides online college prep and AP® courses for seventh-twelfth graders both stateside and abroad. More information about her online classes, books, forthcoming curriculum and speaking schedule can be found at DebraBell.com.

Leaders             Twenty-first Century Homeschooling: What Leaders Need to Know
2          G          Eight Reasons Kids Learn Best at Home
5          G          Education by Design: Understanding God’s Blueprint for Your Child
8          G          Cultivating a Love for Learning in Our Homes
9          G          The Six Traits of Great Writing
11        G          Developing Motivation and Interest in Kids of All Ages

 

Jon Erwin and his brother, Andrew, are a writer/director duo from Birmingham, AL. Together they have created feature films, dramatic TV series, documentaries, reality television, shorts, music videos and commercials. These unorthodox artists are anything but traditional. They focus on new and innovative ways to produce a diverse portfolio of work—from their multi-award winning documentaries such as The Cross and the Tower to the dramatic and reality TV series, Life After and Real Strength, to their feature films October Baby and Mom’s Night Out.

Jon began his career alongside his brother as a teenager, working as a camera operator for ESPN. Local games at the University of Alabama soon became a full-time career as a sports cameraman. He eventually worked on everything from ESPN College Football Primetime to FOX NFL—doing events like the XGames, the NFL, the NBA and the Super Bowl. In 2005, he began to venture into directing commercials and music videos. He found his greatest success in the world of music, directing music videos and producing concerts and television programs for platinum artists like Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, Switchfoot, Skillet and Montgomery Gentry among many others. He has received ten nominations and three consecutive wins for Music Video of the Year at the GMA Dove Awards. He is now a veteran of nearly a hundred music videos and concerts.

From second grade on Jon was homeschooled and frequently credits his career in the film business to this. He is now a homeschool dad and an advocate for the benefits of homeschooling.

Friday Keynote          G T       Teaching Your Kids to Dream
5          T          How to “Break In”Getting a Job in the Entertainment Business
6          T G       The Importance of Storytelling
8          G T       The Incredible Influence of Film and Television

 

Elyse M. Fitzpatrick is a retreat and conference speaker and is the director of Women Helping Women Ministries. She has authored numerous books, including Give Them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids with the Love of Jesus (co-authored with her daughter Jessica Thompson) and Found in Him: The Joy of the Incarnation and Our Union with Christ. She will be speaking with her daughter Jessica Thompson.

Jessica Thompson speaks at women’s conferences and other events. She is the author of a devotional book for families, Exploring Grace Together. Jessica has a bachelor’s degree in theology. She and her husband have three children ranging in age from elementary school to high school.

3          G          What Makes “Christian” Parenting Christian?
4          G          How to Raise a True Believer Instead of a Pharisee
6          G          Good Parenting in, Good Kids Out
7          G          Practical Help for Christian Parents

 

 

Steve Lambert and his wife, Jane, have been married forty-three years and have two daughters and six grandchildren. They began homeschooling in 1981, and today all six of their grandchildren are also being homeschooled. Jane Claire Lambert wrote the award-winning curriculum "Five in a Row" and together they have been traveling the country and encouraging homeschoolers for more than twenty years. Each year Steve speaks to thousands of homeschoolers offering the perspective, wisdom and insight that comes from nearly forty years in the homeschooling field. Steve's mixture of inspiration and information will leave you better prepared for the wonderful adventure we call homeschooling. Without PowerPoint presentations or thick handouts, Steve simply shares from his heart, telling stories that will have you laughing and crying and thankful for the priceless gift you've been given: the privilege of teaching your own children with faith and confidence.

2          D          For Men Only
Thursday Keynote     G          Raising World Changers
7          G          Becoming Your Child's Favorite Teacher
9          G          You Can Do Unit Study

 

John Stonestreet is executive director of the Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview. He is a gifted communicator on areas of faith and culture, theology, worldview, education and apologetics and is a sought-after speaker at conferences, colleges, churches, schools and other types of gatherings each year.

John is the co-host, with Eric Metaxas, of Breakpoint—the Christian worldview radio program founded by the late Chuck Colson; and is the voice of The Point, a daily national radio feature on worldview, apologetics and cultural issues. He also serves as a senior content advisor for Summit Ministries in Manitou Springs, CO.

John holds degrees from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (IL) and Bryan College (TN), and is the co-author of Making Sense of Your World: A Biblical Worldview. John is a frequent speaker at homeschool events across the country and is married to the amazing Sarah, who takes the lead in homeschooling their three daughters. (John is in charge of field trips.) Connect with John at ThePointRadio.org.


 

1          G          How We (mis)Handle the Scripture: Teaching the Bible Biblically
3          G T       Same-Sex Marriage: What Now?
4          O P      About the “Talk": Preparing Students for a Culture of Sexual Brokenness
6          T          Discovering God’s Will: How to Know What to Do with Your Life
8          G T       Living What We Believe: How to Connect Belief and Behavior
Saturday Keynote     G T       Have We “Lost” the Culture? God’s Command to Be People of Hope
10        T          Amused to Death: Living in a Culture of Perpetual Distraction

 

J. Warner Wallace is a cold-case homicide detective, a Christian case maker and an author. Jim was a conscientious and vocal atheist through his undergraduate and graduate work in Design and Architecture (CSULB and UCLA); he always considered himself to be an “evidentialist.” His experience in law enforcement served only to strengthen his conviction that truth is tied directly to evidence. But at the age of thirty-five, J. Warner took a serious and expansive look at the evidence for the Christian worldview and determined that Christianity was demonstrably true. After becoming a Christ follower in 1996, Jim continued to take an evidential approach to truth as he examined the Christian worldview. He eventually earned a master’s degree in theological studies from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary.

J. Warner served as a youth pastor for several years before planting a church in 2006. Along the way, he created and built the PleaseConvinceMe.com website, blog and podcast as a place to post and talk about what he has discovered related to the evidence supporting Christianity. Jim has appeared on television and radio, explaining the role that evidence plays in the Christian definition of faith and defending the historicity of Jesus, the reliability of the Bible and the truth of the Christian worldview. Jim also speaks at churches, retreats and camps as he seeks to help people become confident Christian case makers.

J. Warner’s first book, Cold-Case Christianity, provides readers with ten principles of cold case investigations and utilizes these principles to examine the reliability of the gospel eyewitness accounts. J. Warner’s professional investigative work has received national recognition; his cases have been featured repeatedly on NBC’s Dateline, and he’s been awarded the Police and Fire Medal of Valor “Sustained Superiority” Award. Relying on over two decades of investigative experience, J. Warner provides his readers with the tools they will need to investigate the claims of Christianity and to make a convincing case for the truth of the Christian worldview.

See more at http://coldcasechristianity.com/j-warner-wallace-christian-apologist-and-author/#sthash.IHqhmJhH.dpuf.

1          T G       The Cold-Case Reliability of the Gospels
2          T G       Belief That vs. Belief In
4          T G       The Cold Case for God’s Existence
5          P T       Who’s Waiting for Your Kids?
7          T G       Cold Case Resurrection
9          T G       The Case for Truth
11        T G       The Cold Case Problem of Evil