Video greeting from Richard.
Richard Osmer is an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church (USA). He currently is the Ralph B. and Helen S. Ashenfelter Professor of Mission and Evangelism the in the Education and Formation area of the Department of Practical Theology. A native of North Carolina, he attended college at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He studied for his Masters and Masters of Divinity at Harvard and Yale respectively and did his doctoral work at Emory University. He has written numerous books and articles. His book, Practical Theology: An Introduction, was listed among the “top ten books of the year” for 2008 by the Academy of Parish Clergy. His current research focuses on the interplay of evangelism, spiritual formation, and outreach in missional congregations.
Video greeting from Katie.
Katherine M. Douglass holds a PhD in Practical Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary and is an ordained minister in the PC(USA). Katie worked as an Associate Pastor at the American Protestant Church: An International Congregation in Bonn, Germany and has taught as adjunct faculty at PTS in the area of Education and Formation. Katie and her husband John have two young sons, George and Paul. Together they love to explore national parks on bikes, in tents, with fly rods, and on cross country skis (usually, not all at the same time). They currently reside in Seattle, Washington.
Steering Team Member
Video greeting from Gordon.
Princeton Theological Seminary associate professor of Christian education Gordon S. Mikoski earned his M.Div. and M.A. degrees from the Seminary, and his Ph.D. degree from Emory University. His research and teaching interests focus on the sacraments, the doctrine of the Trinity, and Christian education. His book Baptism and Christian Identity: Teaching in the Triune Name (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2009) explores these issues in dialogue with Gregory of Nyssa and John Calvin. His forthcoming edited volume Opening the Field of Practical Theology: An Introduction (Rowman and Littlefield, 2014) offers fifteen approaches to the field practical theology. He serves as the editor forTheology Today and is the past-president of the Association of Practical Theology. An ordained Presbyterian minister, he served a church in Michigan for eight years before returning to academia.
Steering Team Member
Video greeting from Terri.
Dr. Terri Martinson Elton serves as Associate Professor of Children, Youth and Family Ministry at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, MN. Terri has an MA and PhD in Congregational Mission and Leadership from Luther Seminary and her dissertation studied missional leadership within ELCA congregations. Prior to her call to Luther Seminary, Terri served for three years as Associate to the Bishop in the Saint Paul Area Synod and sixteen years in various roles at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Burnsville, MN. Terri’s passion for reimagining what it means to be church in the 21st century leads her in research and teach in the areas of: congregational leadership, leading change, missional ecclesiology and faith and mission practices for children, youth, young adults and their families. She is an active member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, participates in various church networks and scholarly guilds, and continues to be a small group leader of middle school youth in her home congregation.
Steering Team Member
Video greeting from Lisa.
Dr. Lisa Kimball is the Director of the Center for Ministry of Teaching, and Professor of Christian Formation and Congregational Leadership at Virginia Theological Seminary.
Having just graduated from Stanford University with an A.B. in Human Biology (concentration in Cross-Cultural Communications), Lisa accepted a coffee-hour invitation to help with the church youth group. Twenty years later, having served on the staff of five Episcopal congregations two dioceses, and as a consultant/trainer across the United States, she received her Ph.D. in Work, Community, and Family Education from the University of Minnesota. Lisa’s dissertation, “Being Godparent: A Dialogical Hermeneutic Study of Godparenthood” wove together her interests in human development, experiential learning, faith formation, church history, and popular culture.
Lisa’s research, teaching, and frequent public speaking focus on the significance of intentional faith formation in everyday life, and the relationship between Christian education and healthy faith communities in times of rapidly changing demographics and shifting patterns of religiosity. Currently Lisa is paying close attention to the effective use of digital technologies in ministry. She hosts an annual e-Formation learning exchange for church leaders, and can be heard with three colleagues on the fun podcast, “Easter People: Hopeful Conversations about Faith and Culture.”
Steering Team Member
Video greeting from Reginald.
The Rev. Dr. Reginald Blount received his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Tuskegee University and his Masters of Divinity degree from Candler School of Theology at Emory University. He is a Ph.D. graduate of the Garrett-Evangelical/Northwestern University joint program in Religious and Theological Studies focusing his studies in the areas of Christian Education and Youth Ministry.
Dr. Blount serves on the faculty of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary as Assistant Professor of Formation, Youth and Culture. He is also Pastor of Arnett Chapel A.M.E. Church in Chicago, IL. He is the former Director of Garrett-Evangelical’s Faith Passage, a yearlong spiritual and leadership development program committed to nurturing and empowering high school youth in making
a “faith passage” from adolescence to adulthood. Prior to serving as Director of Faith Passage he also served as Dean of the Youth Theology Institute (YTI) Summer Academy at Candler School of Theology, 1997-1999. He’s spoken nationally and internationally at numerous conferences and workshops helping faith communities envision new and creative ways to minister to, with and on behalf of young people. He is a contributor in “Making God Real for a Next Generation: Ministry with Millennials Born from 1982 to 1999” (Discipleship Resources, 2003).
Steering Team Member
Video greeting from Kenda.
Kenda Creasy Dean is an ordained United Methodist pastor in the Baltimore-Washington Annual Conference and Mary D. Synnott Professor of Youth, Church and Culture at Princeton Theological Seminary, where she works closely with the Institute for Youth Ministry. She also serves as the coordinating pastor of Kingston United Methodist Church in Kingston, NJ, supervising the student interns there. She has authored numerous books on youth and the church, including Almost Christian: What the Faith of Our Teenagers Is Telling the American Church, The Theological Turn in Youth Ministry with Andrew Root, and The Godbearing Life: The Art of Soul Tending for Youth Ministry with Ron Foster. A graduate of Miami University (Ohio) and Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC, Kenda served as a pastor and as a campus minister before earning her doctorate at Princeton Theological Seminary in 1997. She and her husband Kevin are the ridiculously proud parents of two grown children, Brendan (a filmmaker in New York City) and Shannon (a college student). Her guilty pleasures include watching “Sherlock” and digging her toes in the sand in Ocean Grove, NJ.
Meet Bryan Bryan is co-owner of Smart Church Project and an MA student in Religious Studies at the University of Kansas. He holds BAs in History of Ideas and Religion from William Jewell College and an MDiv from Princeton Theological Seminary. Bryan's fascination with technology developed through multiple childhood experiences of breaking the family computer and trying to fix it before anyone else woke up. These harrowing times solidified a lifelong passion for trying to understanding how technology works and how to use it to solve practical problems. Through the Smart Church Project he and Michael Gewecke use their experience in web development, internet marketing and network IT to help churches and christian ministries use technology to carry out their particular missions and visions.
Meet Sarah Sarah was born and raised in Grand Rapids, MI. She went to Alma College where she met her fabulous husband Marcus while leading worship together. She has called Princeton, NJ home for the past six years and does work as a freelance graphic designer and sells custom note cards on etsy. In addition to her work as a designer, Sarah works at Allentown Presbyterian Church (NJ) as a high school youth leader and teaches the confirmation class. She loves to sing, play games, and spend time outdoors. Sarah stays active and energetic thanks to her children, Abby and Matthijs.
Meet Michael Michael's adventures with technology started at the ripe age of 3 years old when he broke a brand new VHS player by mistaking it for a toaster. Ever since then, Michael has blended his two passions for emerging technologies and church ministry. Throughout that journey, he has dabbled in theater lighting, live sound and video production, film production, web design, network IT, and much more. At the same time, Michael is passionate about the church and its theological discourse. Towards that end, Michael holds a degree in Historical and Theological studies from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, OK as well as a Master of Dvinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary. Michael is currently co-owner of Smart Church Project as well as the Associate Pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Spirit Lake, IA.
Meet Christopher Chris is responsible for the sale, design, implementation, account management, and consulting for his clients’ employee and customer assessment programs. As the manager of program-related activities, his involvement focuses on study design, exploratory research, questionnaire development, client reports and presentations, finalization of all program deliverables, and meeting other unique client needs and requirements. He is currently focusing his skills primarily on employee loyalty consulting and is considered Walker’s employee loyalty expert.
Confirmation Camp Ministries Research Team
Meet Jacob Jacob Sorenson is a PhD student at Luther Seminary and has a deep interest in bringing scholarly attention to outdoor ministries. He has a Masters of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary and more than ten years of experience as a youth minister and camp minister. He loves spending time with his amazing wife Anna (a Lutheran pastor) and their two boys Elijah and Nathanael. He also enjoys gardening, running, singing around a campfire, and most outdoor recreational activities.
ELCA Research Team
Meet Peter Peter Bauck is a Ph.D. student at Luther Seminary where his research focuses on moral psychology. He is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and works part-time as a staff chaplain at a level-one trauma center. He completed his CPE internship in Camden, NJ, and residency in St. Paul, MN. He also served as a pastor at Grace University Lutheran Church for one year. He has a Bachelor of Arts from Gustavus Adolphus College in religion and classics and a Master of Divinity from Yale Divinity School. Peter and his wife Kristin (a middle school teacher) currently reside in Minneapolis, MN, where they enjoy cooking, coffee, and chianti.
PC(USA) Research Team
Meet Sylvia Sylvia Bull, a native of Great Falls, MT, is a third-year student in the dual M.Div/M.A. in Christian Education program at Princeton Theological Seminary. A lifelong Lutheran, she is pursuing ordination with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Her academic and vocational interests include adult and intergenerational Christian education, particularly teaching the Bible and church practices. When she is not studying or working at the Princeton Public Library, she enjoys knitting, home improvement projects, and dance parties.
Kate Obermueller Unruh
UMC Research Team
Meet Kate Kate Obermueller Unruh is a Kansas native and forever a Jayhawk at heart. She has ten years of experience in youth ministry in various roles, including serving as Assistant Minister at The American Church in London following the completion of an M.Div/M.A. in youth ministry. Kate lives with her architect husband Kyle and their daughter Piper in Princeton, where Kate is a doctoral student in Education and Formation at Princeton Theological Seminary.
Episcopal Research Team
Meet Kate Kate Siberine is a Master of Divinity student at Virginia Theological Seminary who is studying to be a hospital chaplain while continuing to discern a call to ordained ministry in the Episcopal tradition.
She works at the Center for the Ministry of Teaching and enjoys exploring questions of how Christians are formed to provide pastoral care to one another in their parish and community contexts. When she is not studying, she is probably hiking the hills of Northern
Virginia or creating internet memes.
Meet Bill Dr. Lewis is Professor Emeritus in the School of Business Administration at the University of Dayton. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Cincinnati (1976), and his M.B.A. from Michigan State University (1969). He has taught Market Analysis and Research and Consumer Behavior in the graduate program and Buyer Behavior and Market Analysis, Marketing Planning and Strategy, and Principles of Marketing in the undergraduate program. His marketing research book is entitled Marketing Research: A Decision Making Approach, Tenth Edition, UD Printing & Design, University of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio, 2011. He has published in the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Business and Behavioral Sciences, Journal of Financial Education, Issues in Accounting Education, Journal of Business Ethics, and the Journal of E-Business. Dr. Lewis is the winner of a “Best Paper” award at an annual conference of the Academy of Marketing Science. He has won six teaching awards. As School of Business Administration service award, and a life-time service award at the University of Dayton. He has been a consultant (1976 – present) to various businesses in various industries, and non-profit organizations. While serving on the accounting and finance staff of Chrysler Corporation he had responsibilities in the areas of Budget and Accounting Control Department, Investment Analysis Department, Profit Analysis Department, Corporate Income Tax Division, Accounting Department, Chrysler Chemical Division, and Corporate Treasury where he had responsibility for $10,500,000 in Accounts Receivable from 750 customers of the Marine and Industrial Division. Dr. Lewis is a member of PC(USA).
UMC Research Assistant
Meet Julie Julie Peterson is a 2014 graduate of Princeton Theological Seminary’s MDiv program, and is pursuing ordination with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. A native midwesterner, she is now calling the northeast home for longer than originally planned, as her husband pursues a PhD at Princeton Seminary. Julie’s vocational interests include curriculum development, young adults, the relationship between food, faith, and justice, and ministry in the non-profit world. You might also find Julie behind the counter at a favorite local Princeton coffee shop or teaching yoga classes in the community.
PCUSA Research Assistant
Meet Caroline Caroline Newman is in her fourth (and final!) year of seeking a Dual Degree (M.Div/MA Youth Ministry) at Princeton Theological Seminary. She is originally from Winston-Salem, North Carolina and attended The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill prior to PTS. Caroline is recently engaged and looking forward to joining her fiancé who lives in Baltimore, MD. In her spare time, she also loves hiking, camping, playing soccer, trying new recipes, watching college basketball, and traveling as far and as frequently as her bank account will allow.
Quantitative Research Assistant
Meet Charissa Charissa Mikoski is from Princeton, NJ. She is a junior at Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania where she is a Sociology major and Religion minor. She is a Ruling Elder in the Presbyterian Church (USA). This past summer, she had an internship at the Research Services of the Presbyterian Mission Agency in Louisville, KY. She enjoys participating in Kappa Delta Sorority,seeing shows on Broadway, going to the beach, and watching the Game Show Network.
ELCA Research Assistant
Meet Neil Neil Christians has more than 22 years in Children, Youth and Family Ministry at churches in Minnesota, Texas and North Carolina. As an Associate in Ministry with a master’s degree in Children, Youth and Family Ministry, Neil is passionate about helping others discover their own gifts for ministry and to grow as leaders. Neil also serves as a Congregational Coach with WayToLead.org and is the Director of Camp Hope Ministries.
UMC Research Team
Meet Joy Joy Arroyo is a PhD candidate at Princeton Theological Seminary in Education and Formation. Her research focuses on the transition to motherhood, spirituality, and church involvement. She is ordained in the Wesleyan Church, but has been attending UMC churches for the past two years as her husband is a UMC pastor. She currently lives in Hightstown, NJ with her husband, Sammy, and son, Gabriel. She enjoys coffee, creative writing, and teaching.
Meet Wesley Wesley Ellis is a Member in Discernment in the United Church of Christ and a youth worker with experience in Presbyterian, United Methodist, United Church of Christ, and evangelical contexts. He has finished requirements to receive an M.A. in Christian Education and an M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary in May, 2016. He has worked on other research projects including the Templeton Foundation's research on Science and Youth Ministry. He has also engaged in interdisciplinary research on the intersection of Childhood Studies, Youth Ministry, and Christian eschatology. He plans to become an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ and pursue a Ph.D. in Practical Theology. He currently lives in Princeton, New Jersey, with his wife Amanda and their son Henry.
Meet Annie Annie LeCluyse is a 2015 graduate of Rutgers Masters of Social Work program and became a licensed social worker in Pennsylvania in July. Originally from Arizona, after briefly calling the Midwest home while attending the University of Kansas, she now calls the northeast home as she pursues her career in the social work field. She grew up in the Presbyterian Church and became a Pastor’s Kid at the age of 26. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, running, reading, traveling, spending time with her new puppy, Penny and watching the Jayhawks play basketball.
Kermit Cornell Moss, Sr.
Kermit Cornell Moss, Sr. is a Ph.D. student in the area of Practical Theology (Christian Education and Formation) at Princeton Theological Seminary. Research interests include Black liberation theology, critical race theory, philosophies of practical reason, pneumatology, the spirituality of urban youth and hip-hop culture.
Prior to matriculating to the Ph.D. program, he graduated Summa Cum Laude from Long Island University-Brooklyn campus, with a B.A. in Political Science. In addition, Kermit also graduated from Princeton Theological Seminary with a Master of Divinity.
Kermit also currently serves as senior pastor of Manhattan Bible Church which is located in the Inwood neighborhood in Northern Manhattan (NYC). In addition, he served as senior pastor in a congregation in the South Bronx New York, has served on pastoral staff in congregations in New Jersey and Virginia and ministered for six months in the Philippines. He is married to Antoinette Gaboton-Moss and they have three wonderful children: Kermit Jr., Sebastian, and Chloe.
AME Research Team
Meet Shonda The Reverend Shonda Nicole Gladden is a mother and scholar practitioner serving as the Pastor of Allen Temple AME Church in Marion, IN. She is an interdisciplinary scholar engaging the intersections of identity, culture and art, with particular attention to womanist methodology, millennial culture and the ways Spirit permeates, presents, and performs across the disciplines. She has earned degrees from Morgan State University, Wesley Theological Seminary and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, as well as taught courses and lectured at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. She is an active member of the American Academy of Religion and has recently completed a three year term as one of two Co-conveners of the AAR/SBL Women’s Caucus (2011-2013).