Rev. Dr. Jia Starr Brown is an African American queer pastor, educator, and activist in the Twin Cities, MN with more than two decades of experience advocating for underrepresented communities. With a heart for community and access for all, she stands – and activates – as a truth-teller at the intersection of faith, education, and justice.
Her personal philosophy being “I give what I need”, Dr. Starr Brown’s work is fueled by her lived experience – and lack – at the convergence of three vulnerable populations.
Equipped with a Master of Divinity from Luther Seminary, and a Doctorate of Ministry from United […]
Sarah Drummond writes about ministerial leadership with a special emphasis on how it is taught and learned. She is the author of five books, most recently, Intentional Leadership In Between Seasons, published by the Pilgrim Press. She serves as Founding Dean of Andover Newton Seminary at Yale Divinity School.
The Rev. Dr. Sarah Griffith Lund is Minister for Disabilities and Mental Health Justice on the national staff of the United Church of Christ and is the senior pastor of First Congregational UCC of Indianapolis, IN. Sarah is the author of several books on the topic of faith and mental health: Blessed are the Crazy: Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness, Family, and Church; Blessed Union: Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness and Marriage; Blessed Youth: Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness with Children and Teens, and Blessed Youth Survival Guide.
Daneen Akers loves the gloaming, that time of day when it’s starting to grow dark and there’s magic in the air. She’s also very fond of books, walks in the woods, songs around a campfire, snuggles with her daughters, and large pots of hot beverages enjoyed with friends. Her works include Dear Mama God, a children’s prayer book filled with simple gratitudes addressed to the divine in feminine form, and Holy Troublemakers & Unconventional Saints, a middle-grades anthology with original portraits and profiles of diverse faith leaders who worked for more love and justice in their corner […]
Wendy Claire Barrie is the author of Faith at Home: A Handbook for Cautiously Christian Parents, and is finishing up her second book, The Church Post-Sunday School: How to Be Intergenerational and Why it Matters. She is the principal writer for the Holy Troublemakers curriculum and was the editor of the fully updated and newly revised youth ministry curriculum, Journey to Adulthood. Wendy has served eight Episcopal congregations on both coasts in Christian formation over the last 30-plus years including All Saints Church in Pasadena, California, and Trinity Church Wall Street in lower Manhattan. She […]
Rev. Talitha Amadea Aho is a chaplain at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland and a minister member of the Presbytery of San Francisco. Recently, she served as a pastor at Montclair Presbyterian Church, the largest Presbyterian congregation in Oakland, where she was responsible for children and youth programs. She has been in ministry to the young since she was old enough to qualify as a chaperone—both at church camps and churches on the East coast, and with the nonprofit organization Children of Uganda.
Rev. Whitney Baisden-Bond a Ph.D. candidate in the field of theology, ethics, and the human sciences at Chicago Theological Seminary. Her research centers on womanist approaches to bridging gaps between pastoral care and practical theology within spiritual spaces, primarily Black churches, for queer-identifying individuals. She is a graduate of the Candler School of Theology at Emory University and Spelman College and serves as a program coordinator for Spelman College’s WISDOM Center.
Dr. Kishundra King, Ph.D. holds a Ph.D. degree in Religion, Psychology, and Culture from Vanderbilt University, where she was a Theology and Practice Program fellow. She has also earned an M.Div. from Yale Divinity School and an M.S. in Counseling from Creighton University. Dr. King’s research focuses on Womanist pastoral theology grounded in Black girlhood experiences where she draws on her clinical counseling experiences and employs a Womanist approach to ethnography. In her classroom, Dr. King aims to create a formative learning environment where students develop their own identity and practice in Black religious thought and life.
Dr. King […]
Dr. Brian Ragsdale, Ph.D. is a visionary educator, creative thinker, visual artist, community organizer, and educational management professional. He is a licensed Clinical psychologist, who performs well in self starting, entrepreneurial environments, distance learning and online higher education administration.
Brian has experience in conceptualizing and implementing systemic change processes (blending best ideas from traditional academic environments with technological advances in distance learning environments). Wealth of experience in re-imagining processes; faculty mentoring and training, community organizing, social service management, program development, program evaluation, research and statistics, grant writer secured over $148k in funding from local, state, and federal sources. Brian is a […]
Dr. Amy Adamczyk, Ph.D. is Professor of Sociology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and the Programs of Doctoral Study in Sociology and Criminal Justice at The Graduate Center, City University of New York (CUNY). Trained as a sociologist of religion, her research focuses on how different contexts (e.g. nations, counties, friendship groups), and personal religious beliefs shape people’s deviant, criminal, and health-related attitudes and behaviors. She received her PhD. in Sociology from the Pennsylvania State University. She holds MA degrees from the University of Chicago and the Graduate Center/ Queens College, and she completed her BA degree at Hunter […]
Mercy Herrera has been a in education for the past decade. She currently is the assistant principal at Ascend Elementary Charter School in Brooklyn, NY. Mercy’s been an educator, teacher trainer, school leader, and educational advocate for staff and students. She is passionate about coaching and supporting teachers to reach their personal and professional goals. Through dynamic and well executed professional development, Mercy empowers teachers with new information and impactful learning experiences. A specialist in team development, Mercy facilitates group engagements that leave colleagues feeling refreshed and energized with renewed vision and purpose. Mercy trains teachers on to combine a […]
Annie Hipps is from Seattle, WA and is currently attending the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI, where she is a double major in Psychology and Communications. She is very passionate about having difficult conversations and learning by talking to people. As a white woman in America, Hipps has learned through her experience at school what that means. In eighth grade, she was educated on the finer details of American history then she ever had at school or at home. This is when she started to understand the importance of using her voice and place of privilege.
When Hipps entered […]