Phil Downer grew up in Colorado and New York with more than the usual family pain. He flunked out of the college where his dad had been the student body president. As a young man he strongly disliked authority, but ironically (though providentially), joined the United States Marine Corps. He stuffed the pain, lived for the moment, medicated his needs with achievement, competition, and the answers of the world. After all, big boys don't cry.
Phil finally found answers when a doctor teamed up with other businessmen and reached out to him with the timeless truths of Jesus Christ. He saw the Bible become the most relevant and effective tool in his leadership role, becoming a senior partner and trial lawyer in a 50-attorney law firm with five offices coast to coast. He learned that the Scriptures provided invaluable guidance in rebuilding relationships and was a blueprint for his discipleship of men in the marketplace. He found forgiveness for the mistakes of yesterday and faith for the fears of tomorrow, providing him rest in his todays.
Phil serves as President of Discipleship Network of America (DNA), a nationwide network of people committed to following Christ's life of winning and discipling others to become disciple makers. Phil is a popular speaker at men's events, including Promise Keepers, at couples events with his wife, Susy, and at family conferences with his six children. He has appeared on Focus on the Family and his Discipleship Moments daily radio program airs on Truth Talk in 15 cities and 7 states. Phil served as president of CBMC for ten years, is on the Steering Committee of the National Coalition of Men's Ministries, and is a past elder of his church. Phil has authored numerous books including the companion book to this conference, Eternal Impact, Investing in the Lives of Others. Those endorsing Phil's ministry and books include Pat Morley, Howard Hendricks, Kay Arthur, Chuck Brewster, and Steven Farrar.
Dianne Craft has a Master's Degree in Special Education, is a Certified Natural Health Professional and a former homeschool mom. She is currently a Learning Specialist for the Homeschool Legal Defense Association. She is president of CHILD DIAGNOSTICS, Inc. a private consultation firm in Denver, CO. In her daily practice, she sees families from all over the country, helping them find ways to make learning easier for their children. She has created teaching tools for parents and teachers such as, The Right Brain Phonics Program, Brain Integration Therapy Manual, and The Biology of Behavior CD set. Dianne is passionate about making learning easier for children everywhere.
Link to Dianne's webpage:www.diannecraft.org
Carol is a homeschooling mom of many years who speaks coast to coast at homeschool conferences and is a frequent radio show guest. She began Open Gifts Ministries when her son---a non-stop, constantly moving ball of energy---didn't fit the mold that worked so well in a traditional classroom setting.
Her creative, can-do strategies with this child led to her book entitled How To Get Your Child Off the Refrigerator and On To Learning. When Carol admitted to her own ever increasing distractibility, survival strategies had to be found in order to keep this self-proclaimed "Highly Distractible MOM" on track. The result is a funny, practical book entitled, If I'm Diapering a Watermelon, Then Where'd I Leave the Baby?
With each new challenge, Carol has learned to recognize the value of following the wisdom of the Designer and His plan for each child and each mom. With much laughter coupled with highly practical solutions, Carol will share strategies that encourage you to open the gift that is your child, to see your child and yourself as God designed us each to be, and to fulfill His plan for each of us, educationally and in daily living.
Carol, along with her husband, homeschool their three children in the beautiful Berkshire Hills in Connecticut (when she's not busy searching for her lost keys).
Carla Abrams has been married to Jim for 30 years and is a mother of 4 children, from 10 yrs to 24 yrs. They have been homeschooling for 20 years and have graduated 2, with another graduating this year. Still at home is their youngest in 5th grade. Carla has served in the North Jersey Home Schooler Association as a support leader for 16 years. Carla is also on the leadership team of a classical co-op in northern NJ. Carla & Jim have served on the board of ENOCH as the north Regional Reps and Carla served as ENOCH’s Convention Coordinator. She has spoken many times at support meetings and conferences, tackling topics such as the middle school year, high school and preparing for college.
Ka-Neng and Eunice Au are coaches of a debate and speech (forensics) club, Manus Oratorum, affiliated with the National Christian Forensics and Communications Association (NCFCA). This is the fourth year that they've taught and coached debate. Eunice has fourteen years homeschooling experience and two teaching certificates. Her husband has been at Rutgers University for over twenty years as a reference librarian. Two of their daughters, Kristen and Rebecca, ages 17 and 14 respectively, each have four years debate experience – two years competing in both speech and debate within the NCFCA league. Their youngest daughter, Colleen, aged 12, has begun non-competitive speech and debate this year. Additionally, their club has hosted a one-day regional practice tournament in Somerset, NJ, and Eunice has directed the three-day long March 2008 Freedom Tournament in NY. For more information on their debate club, please visit: http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/~au/debate.htm
Mark and Sue August have one son Jack, born in 1993. Jack has been homeschooled all his life. They live in Medford, a South Jersey suburb of Philadelphia. Mark and Sue were married in 1980. Both began their ongoing relationship with Jesus Christ as teenagers. The Augusts are members of Sovereign Grace Church in Cherry Hill. They are co-leaders of their church's 55-family homeschool support group. The Augusts are also members of their local homeschool support group, Living Water Home Educators.
In his role as Legislative Liaison for ENOCH, Mark serves on a statewide task force whose mission is to respond to any legislation that may threaten the freedoms that NJ homeschoolers enjoy.
Mark's passion is to encourage homeschoolers to think outside the box in their approach to homeschooling and to see homeschooling primarily as a way of discipling children in the ways of the Lord, rather than merely an educational choice.
Norman Birkett attended a Christian school for most of his pre-college years, receiving an academically rigorous and thoroughly Christian education that embodied many elements of what is now called Christian and classical education—including instruction in Latin and philosophy. He then studied philosophy at Princeton University, earning his A.B. cum laude in 1984. His thesis, on artificial intelligence, won the university’s Dickinson Prize as the best thesis that year in logic and philosophy of mind. After college, he spent fifteen years developing software for the financial industry, gaining a wide exposure to the business world in the process. His work ranged from very technical systems programming to the management of trading systems software teams in large Wall Street firms. From 1999 to 2008, he was a teacher and administrator at the classically-oriented Christian school associated with his church in Montville, New Jersey. His teaching assignment varied from year to year, but he taught logic, rhetoric, history of western thought, calculus, literature, music, and computer programming and robotics. He developed the curricula for most of his courses. He is the author of an introductory logic textbook, Logic I: Tools for Thinking, and has a second-year logic text and other materials in the works. He and his wife Katharine, author of The Great Latin Adventure, run Classical Legacy Press, capably assisted by their cats Molly and Parsnip.
Ray Ciervo Ministries is a Christ-centered apologetic ministry geared to equip the church for its work of service. Although apologetics is normally viewed (and presented) as a "heady" subject, Ray brings this subject down to earth, makes it practical and usable for the church's work in evangelism and spiritual growth. Ray conducts seminars, conferences, and classes on subjects including building a biblical worldview, creation vs. evolution, world religions, the reliability of the Bible, moral relativism and the necessity of truth. Ray focuses on showing the historical evidence for the resurrection of Jesus Christ, God's Son. Ray also teaches the church the basics of Christian conduct, character, leadership and servanthood. Knowledge of the Scripture and years of experience give Ray a platform to speak on subjects that help to keep the church focused on its mission.
Ray has ministered in a variety of positions from pastoring, church planting, training leaders, and teaching as an adjunct professor in Bible college. Ray received his masters degree in apologetics from Southern Evangelical Seminary in 2002(summa cum laude). He has traveled extensively in England and South America for over 30 years.
What drives Ray is his love for God, the Scripture, and the church. He continually strives to equip the church with tools to remain faithful to the Scripture and relevant to the world. Ray is married to Joanne and presently lives in Eatontown, NJ. They have three children and seven grandchildren.
Dr. Bruce K Eagleson has practiced emergency medicine for nearly 30 yrs. He and his wife have exclusively homeschooled their four children for 22 years. They have three high school at home graduates and are still homeschooling the youngest. Their first and third children did college at home.
Dr. Eagleson sees himself as a homeschool evangelist. Bruce is recognized nationally as the chairman of The National Alliance of Christian Home Education Leadership. The Eaglesons have served for 12 years on the board of directors of the Christian Homeschool Association of Pennsylvania (CHAP). He currently chairs that board. Dr. Eagleson also founded the CHAP Foundation. In addition, Dr. Eagleson is the author of the CHAP getting started book, Keys to Homeschooling in the Keystone State. Bruce also writes a regular column for the CHAP newsletter.
Bruce’s teaching has been received enthusiastically at many conferences including ENOCH of NJ, Mass HOPE, TEACH CT, HoME, CHAP, Sandy Cove’s and Harvey Cedars’ Bible Confernce homeschool week, and the National Alliance of Home Education Leadership. Topics he speaks on include: character lessons from historical figures, apologetics, a vision to homeschool, creation, getting started in homeschooling, what to do after high school, and many Bible topics. Dr. Eagleson has been described as a principled, courageous, and visionary national home school leader.
Mary Ann is by God’s sovereign grace, a committed Christian. She has been married to, Bruce Eagleson for 31 years, and is a home educating mom of 22 years for their four children, ages 26 to 16 and has a passion for exploring how God uses home education as one of His greatest tools to shape us into His image. She and her husband serve on the board of the Alliance of Christian Home Education Leadership, a national advocacy group for home education. They are also currently serving on the CHAP (Christian Homeschooling Association of Pennsylvania) Board, and have done so for 12 years. Mary Ann has been involved with several home education co-ops in participant as well as leadership roles, one of which started in their basement.
Roger Farr, married to Susan for 28 years, is the home schooling father of three children, Peter (22), Brian (20), and Katie (18), and has schooled them from kindergarten through high school graduation. With both a BS and MS in chemical engineering, Roger worked for 26 years with a major chemical company, rising to VP of marketing before "retiring" to volunteer full-time in the ministry to over 6000 fathers and sons he now leads. The relationship between a father and his sons and daughters is fundamental for a family to have a profound impact on the world for the cause of Christ; it is to the improvement of this relationship that Roger and Sue now work with all the strength that God gives them.
Eva Goldstein, M.Ed., "Accomplished Certified IEW Instructor", a lifelong learner, educator, writer and reader, immensely enjoys homeschooling her only gem, Shayna. Together with her husband, Don, they have seen the benefits of home education in the life of Shayna and love sharing what they have learned with others. One of their biggest "uh-huh" moments was six years ago when they found the Institute of Excellence in Writing. Since then, Eva has "adopted" hundreds of homeschooling children and their families and coached them in the area of writing. She has loved the fact that through IEW, she has turned reluctant, hesitant writers into budding authors.
As a medical doctor, teacher, tutor, author, and homeschooler, Stephen Guffanti, M.D., brings a unique background and tremendous insight to his talks. His audiences, parents of children of all ages, and beginning as well as veteran homeschoolers, also love him for his warmth, humor and sincerity. Not only is Stephen a doctor, but he is also ADHD, and from the unusual perspective of being both he talks to parents of ADHD children, bringing hope and understanding. Unique about Dr. Guffanti is that he has helped his patients find and follow their passion as a step in their treatment towards better health.
Born with a passion for education as well as medicine, Dr. Guffanti, dyslexic and a kinesthetic learner, has served as the medical director of a clinic specializing in learning disorders, where he discovered 70% of those children labeled ADD or ADHD were misdiagnosed. He has focused on creating education that meets the needs of all children. In his talks, you’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and you’ll gain hope and new understanding.
Dr. Guffanti is the author of the Rocket Phonics reading program and the book Does Your Child Really Have ADHD? This is the book about which parents say, "This saved our family." Dr. Guffanti’s newest book is The Purpose of Passion. This book developed from the questions of many parents who just want to support their children in finding and following the passion God has given them. You may reach Dr. Guffanti at www.rocketphonics.com or www.drdyslexic.com.
David Hazell has been involved in homeschooling since 1987. During several of those years he was a stay-at-home dad directly responsible for educating his children. For eight years, David and his family lived in Russia where he served in Bible translation in Siberia and helped coordinate Bible translations in 80 languages. His six children often ministered with him as he traveled throughout Russia and Europe. David and his wife, Marie, now devote the majority of their time to the development of My Father’s World curriculum with the dual goal of providing support for Bible translation and raising up generations of families that see the world through God’s eyes and live according to that knowledge.
Dr. Keller didn’t set out to be an author. A former research assistant professor at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, Dr. Keller worked in the molecular biology field. Her background in biophysics, molecular biology and neuroscience, coupled with her love of the dramatic, led her to prepare interesting "labs" for her children and neighbors. "Science is fun," she says. A home-school mom, she developed Real Science-4-Kids after searching for a science curriculum that taught solid science concepts in a manner understandable for youngsters. In 2001 Dr. Rebecca W. Keller began to develop a formalized training program to equip non-science teachers (usually other moms) to feel comfortable with the material. Today, Real Science-4-Kids, with its easy-to-use teacher-friendly manuals and engaging, kid-friendly text, is in use in all 50 states as well as many other countries. Dr. Keller’s team continues to develop and test products. Kogs-4-KidsTM, an interdisciplinary curricula program, was introduced in Spring 2008.
With over 20 years in education, Donna Krahn comes with experience straight from the classroom. She has been married to Gary Krahn for 25 years and is the mom of Steve and Suzy. During her time in the classroom, she has taught at a variety of levels, from preschool to high school. Over the years she has volunteered in many capacities for 4-H, the Boy Scouts, and school functions. Donna has been a junior high and high school youth sponsor in her church, and she has tutored students who need a little extra help. She has organized science fairs and workshops, and has also judged spelling bees and speech contests for ACSI. Donna has a bachelor’s degree in Christian education and a second bachelor’s degree with a concentration in early childhood education, both from Lincoln Christian College.
Susan Kemmerer and her husband Dale have, by God’s grace, been homeschooling their nine children for eighteen years – with 3 graduated and 6 to go (or sixteen more years of homeschooling ahead!). Susan has authored more than a dozen textbooks, including Apples Daily Spelling Drills for Secondary Students and Pennsylvania Keystones. She has had articles published in several homeschool periodicals, and has spoken at conferences on the east coast (including CHAP, SEARCH, and ENOCH). Besides being with their children, the Kemmerer’s love spending time in fellowship with the believers in their local church. Dale and Susan (along with their children) run their business, Schoolhouse Publishing, from their home in Franconia, Pennsylvania.
English teacher and coordinator of the gifted student program, published author, homeschooling Mom and director of Bridgeway Homeschool Academy, Jessica Parnell has spent 18 years working with students and homeschooling families. She has a passion for writing and offers writing classes, seminars and workshops in many different venues. In her role with Bridgeway Academy she also works with parents and students on college admissions, customizing curriculum to meet the needs of each individual situation, and preparing students for their future role in ministry or the workforce.
Mike Snavely was reared in South Africa, the son of missionary parents. His father was a bush pilot for a mission hospital among the Zulu people. Growing up in an area that teemed with remarkable and diverse creatures, he had a wide variety of fascinating experiences which helped mold his future. After graduating from Oak Hills College in Minnesota in 1979, he returned to South Africa to work for the National Parks Service in the Kruger National Park. This earned him the nickname, "Ranger Mike".
Following this, he began a career as an African wildlife artist. In 1985 he married Carrie Baum who grew up near Hershey, Pa. In 1986 they went to South Africa with The Evangelical Alliance Mission and served by teaching at Durban Bible College. Since returning to the U.S., they developed Mission: Imperative - a ministry of teaching creation (vs. evolution) through a seriers of seminars. The ministry necessitates travel, both in this country and abroad. Mike and Carrie have home-educated their children since 1991 --- Luke (1986), John (1989), and Laura (1991).
The "Creation Safari" seminars Mike has developed are not dry lectures, nor does he speak over people’s heads. His approach is to make these sessions as interesting and understandable as possible. He uses PowerPoint, video, puppets (and other props). The use of humor adds to the interest. Mike is the author of Creation or Evolution: A Home-Study Curriculum and has produced seven DVDs on a wide range of topics relative to creation issues.
Tim Williams is a presenter for the National Center for Biblical Parenting. Tim and his wife Ana have eight children and together have been involved in marriage and family ministry over the past 20 years. They have homeschooled their children and his experience as a father and mentor has given him many practical stories and illustrations to help parents.
The National Center for Biblical Parenting is committed to teaching biblical parenting principles to help children change their hearts, not just their behavior. As parents work on character with their children, the academics become easier to teach and children are prepared more completely for adulthood.