KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

  Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann  Archdiocese of Kansas City, Kansas  Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann   was ordained a priest in 1975. He served as the Archdiocesan Pro-Life Coordinator in St. Louis (1984-1995) and became the Bishop for the Archdiocese of Kansas City (2005). Archbishop Naumann is Chair of the Kansas Catholic Conference, and currently serves the USCCB as a member of the Administrative Committee, the Committee on Pro-Life Activities, Religious Liberty Committee, and the Sub Committee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage. He has been elected to serve as the next Chair of USCCB Pro-Life Committee. Archbishop Naumann also serves on the Board of National Committee for the Human Life Amendment and is the Co-Chair for the Religious Alliance Against Pornography.

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann
Archdiocese of Kansas City, Kansas

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann was ordained a priest in 1975. He served as the Archdiocesan Pro-Life Coordinator in St. Louis (1984-1995) and became the Bishop for the Archdiocese of Kansas City (2005). Archbishop Naumann is Chair of the Kansas Catholic Conference, and currently serves the USCCB as a member of the Administrative Committee, the Committee on Pro-Life Activities, Religious Liberty Committee, and the Sub Committee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage. He has been elected to serve as the next Chair of USCCB Pro-Life Committee. Archbishop Naumann also serves on the Board of National Committee for the Human Life Amendment and is the Co-Chair for the Religious Alliance Against Pornography.

  Alliance Defending Freedom   “We've Defended Your Freedom Since 1994”  ADF was founded by 30 Christian leaders recognizing that Christians need to unite in order to defend religious freedom before it was too late. And so, Alliance Defending Freedom was launched on January 31, 1994 to ensure that religious freedom is protected and available when needed. The legal system, which was built on a moral and Christian foundation, has been steadily moving against  religious freedom ,  the sanctity of life , and  marriage and family . By funding cases, training attorneys, and successfully advocating for freedom in court, Alliance Defending Freedom changed that.  “It is not enough to just win cases; we must change the culture, and the strategy of Alliance Defending Freedom ensures lasting victory.”

Alliance Defending Freedom

“We've Defended Your Freedom Since 1994”

ADF was founded by 30 Christian leaders recognizing that Christians need to unite in order to defend religious freedom before it was too late. And so, Alliance Defending Freedom was launched on January 31, 1994 to ensure that religious freedom is protected and available when needed. The legal system, which was built on a moral and Christian foundation, has been steadily moving against religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and marriage and family. By funding cases, training attorneys, and successfully advocating for freedom in court, Alliance Defending Freedom changed that.

“It is not enough to just win cases; we must change the culture, and the strategy of Alliance Defending Freedom ensures lasting victory.”

  Stephen Minnis  Benedictine College President  A native of St. Joseph, MO, Mr. Minnis received his Bachelor’s degree from Benedictine College in 1982. He obtained his Juris Doctorate degree from Washburn University in 1985 and Master’s of Business Administration degree in 1993 from Baker University. Mr. Minnis began his legal career in the county prosecutor’s office for Johnson County, Kansas. At Sprint Corporation, he held the position of director, state regulatory and general attorney for 14 years.  He served as president of the Benedictine College Alumni Association from 1991 to 1995 and joined the Benedictine College Board of Directors in 1992, serving until October 2004 when he became president of the college. Steve’s wife, Amy (Kohake), graduated from BC in 1984 and currently teaches in the Education Department at Benedictine College. The couple has three children, Matthew, Michael, and Molly.

Stephen Minnis
Benedictine College President

A native of St. Joseph, MO, Mr. Minnis received his Bachelor’s degree from Benedictine College in 1982. He obtained his Juris Doctorate degree from Washburn University in 1985 and Master’s of Business Administration degree in 1993 from Baker University. Mr. Minnis began his legal career in the county prosecutor’s office for Johnson County, Kansas. At Sprint Corporation, he held the position of director, state regulatory and general attorney for 14 years.

He served as president of the Benedictine College Alumni Association from 1991 to 1995 and joined the Benedictine College Board of Directors in 1992, serving until October 2004 when he became president of the college. Steve’s wife, Amy (Kohake), graduated from BC in 1984 and currently teaches in the Education Department at Benedictine College. The couple has three children, Matthew, Michael, and Molly.

  Dr. Leonard Delorenzo   Dr. Delorenzo works in the McGrath Institute for Church Life and teaches theology at the University of Notre Dame. DeLorenzo earned his doctorate in systematic theology from the University of Notre Dame, where he also earned his master’s (systematic theology) and bachelor’s degrees (theology and philosophy). He has served on the leadership teams for Notre Dame Vision, the Notre Dame Catechist Academy, the Notre Dame Character Project, and the Church Life Internship.  Areas of expertise include the saints, the Catholic imagination, religion and literature, and the relationship between storytelling and grace. His most recent books are “ What Matters Most: Empowering Young People for Life's Big Decisions ” and “Work of Love: A Theological Reconstruction of the Communion of Saints” and he’s has been a contributor to such publications as Our Sunday Visitor and Church Life Journal.

Dr. Leonard Delorenzo

Dr. Delorenzo works in the McGrath Institute for Church Life and teaches theology at the University of Notre Dame. DeLorenzo earned his doctorate in systematic theology from the University of Notre Dame, where he also earned his master’s (systematic theology) and bachelor’s degrees (theology and philosophy). He has served on the leadership teams for Notre Dame Vision, the Notre Dame Catechist Academy, the Notre Dame Character Project, and the Church Life Internship.

Areas of expertise include the saints, the Catholic imagination, religion and literature, and the relationship between storytelling and grace. His most recent books are “What Matters Most: Empowering Young People for Life's Big Decisions” and “Work of Love: A Theological Reconstruction of the Communion of Saints” and he’s has been a contributor to such publications as Our Sunday Visitor and Church Life Journal.

WORKSHOP

Mary Rice Hasson
Mary Rice Hasson is the Kate O’Beirne Fellow and Director of the Catholic Women’s Forum at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, DC. An attorney, Mary writes and speaks frequently on women, faith, culture, and gender ideology. She was a keynote speaker for the Holy See at the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in both 2017 and 2018. Mary edited the book, Promise and Challenge: Catholic Women Reflect on Feminism, Complementarity, and the Church, and is the co-author of newly released book, Get Out Now. She previously led Catholic marriage preparation and women’s ministries and is the mother of seven.

“Starting a Catholic High School/Shifting the Culture of a School to be More Mission-Focussed” Panel Discussion

  • Andy Tylicki, President of St. James Academy in Lenexa, KS; 
  • Kyle Pietrantonio, President of Holy Spirit Preparatory School in Atlanta, GA; 
  • Todd Flanders, President of Providence Academy in St. Paul, MN; and 
  • Rich Meyer, President, JSerra Catholic High School in San Juan Capistrano, CA; 
  • Pat Reidy, JSerra Vice President of Mission and Faith is the moderator.

“Effective Board Leadership” Panel Discussion

  • Jay Breidenthal, founding board member St. James Academy

  • John Menghini, founding board member St. James Academy

  • Steve Sharpe, founding board member St. James Academy

  • Fr. Mike Koehler, current Trustee St. James Academy

  • Mrs. Zena Weist, current Trustee St. James Academy

J. D. Mesnard Regional Director, Alliance Defending Freedom
Mr. Mesnard presents resources and discusses operational tips within biblical doctrine as current liberty issues affect our schools’ management decisions.

Father Jarrod Lies
Father was ordained by Bishop Gerber on March 26th, 2001 to the Diocese of Wichita, Kansas.  After two years at a parish, he was named the Director of Pastoral Care (chaplain) for Bishop Carroll Catholic High School where he spent the next eight years.  From July 2008 – July 2015 he also served as the Pastor of St. John’s Clonmel. And from June 2011 to June 2015 he served as the Director of the Office of Faith Formation for the Diocese of Wichita.  Fr. Jarrod is currently the Pastor of St. Francis of Assisi parish in Wichita and has recently completed a License in Sacred Theology in the New Evangelization. He finds his greatest fulfillment in teaching and preaching the Eucharistic person of Jesus Christ so as to inspire and enlighten in the fire of the Holy Spirit to the glory of God the Father unto the salvation of souls.

Michael Ciaccio MS, LPC, SATP

After graduating University of Kansas, Michael Ciaccio was in seminary then discerned a true calling to counseling and pursued his profession as a therapist at Divine Mercy University. He moved to Kansas City, MO, and finished graduate school at Avila University, then provided counseling services at 'Ozanam' between 2010 and 2013. As a residential therapist and the substance abuse therapist, he counseled teenagers and families. In 2014 he founded the Center for Healing in the Chancery of the Diocese of Kansas City- St. Joseph. His passion is working with couples, families, individuals and teenagers by addressing the wholeness of the human person: spiritual, emotional, intellectual and biological.

Michael and his wife have 7 kids, 2 sets of twins!  When there’s down time, they enjoy playing with my kids, watching the Chicago Cubs and coaching baseball.  

Todd Flanders
President, Providence Academy

Josh Blonski
Dean of Students, Providence Academy

Everett Fritz
His approach to speaking always leaves the audience with practical wisdom through lived experience. He has been featured on FORMED, EWTN, Catholic Answers Live, YDisciple, xt3 (Australia) and in many dioceses, parishes and schools around the country.

Everett Fritz is the author of best-selling books. In 2016, Everett  founded St. Andrew Missionaries – an organization dedicated to training and equipping the Catholic Church and families in discipleship of young people.

He holds an MA in Theology with concentrations in Catechesis and Evangelization from the Augustine Institute as well as a BA in Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville. He has been serving the Church in youth ministry for over a decade.

Everett married Katrina, his high school sweetheart in 2006. They reside in Denver, Colorado with their three children.


St. James Academy Counselors and Students
This student group assists the Counseling Department to develop, create and implement school wide campaigns focused on subjects such as personal character development, mental health awareness, digital citizenship and social relationships. Students are chosen through an application and interview process and must demonstrate the willingness to learn about the world of counseling. Outcomes may include monthly awareness promotions, health and wellness initiatives, and classroom/school presentations.

The results have exceeded expectations! Could a “Counseling Student Team” be an asset to your department?

 

Dr. Tiffany Boury Director of Catholic Leadership, Associate Professor of Education

Dr. Boury’s research is in the importance of providing opportunities for pre-service teachers to experience international field placements, culturally relevant teaching and ESL instruction. In 2017, she served as a visiting faculty member in Gaming, Austria to collaborate with Franciscan’s Austrian school partnerships and  present her research in Georgia and Hungary with the European Scientific Journal . In 2018 her second program, a partnership between St. Bonaventure schools in Kowloon, Hong Kong was implemented. The English Empowering Program offers Franciscan graduates a year of international teacher training, classroom ESL mentoring and it serves as a cultural immersion for both communities.

As Director of the Master of Catholic Leadership, her team of faculty, subject experts and leadership alumni are serving leaders in multidisciplinary fields. The MCL program is a 23 month, fully online, cohort model designed to foster active leadership; the Catholic school leader track will begin June 2019.

Dr. Boury received her bachelor’s degree from West Liberty University, her Masters of Education from Walden University and her PhD in Instructional Management and Leadership    from Robert Morris University. In 2017, she was named recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award from Franciscan University and Associate Editor for the European Scientific Journal.  

 

Mary Forr & Joanne Callaghan
Mary Forr is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame where she majored in political science and philosophy.  After graduation, Mary received her Masters in Education from Notre Dame through the Alliance for Catholic Education.  Mary has taught high school and middle school and has founded Teaching Together, a non-profit providing jobs for adults with special needs in Catholic school classrooms.  In 2016, Mary became the Director of Life Issues for the Archdiocese of Washington where she currently works to provide educational, public policy, and catechetical materials surrounding the life issues.

Joanne Callahan is the Program Director for Teaching Together Chicago  (TTC) and is responsible for administering the program and setting in motion the strategic plan of TTC.  Joanne is an Occupational Therapist with over 30 years of experience working with adolescent, adult and geriatric populations. Joanne’s practice areas have included adolescent/adult/geriatric  psychosocial dysfunction, in-patient acute care, in-patient rehabilitation, and home health care.

Aside from extensive health care experience, Joanne brings a unique blend of personal experience and passion to the organization. Joanne and her husband Jack have raised their daughter Mary Kate, a T8 paraplegic since 6 months of age, to become a very independent and dynamic young woman. Joanne’s twenty plus years of experiences involving a child with physical challenges and several private school settings provides her a practical understanding of the issues involved with placing individuals in school settings.     

Since her daughter became paralyzed, Joanne has directly assisted The Claddagh Foundation, which began after her daughter’s onset of paralysis, in raising over 2 million dollars to support spinal cord injury research and organizations that provide adaptive equipment and adaptive recreational programming to those living with physical disabilities.     

 

Dr. James A. Mello Executive Director of Institutional Effectiveness, Franciscan University of Steubenville

An experienced administrator in Catholic higher education, Jim has presented nationally and internationally on the expression of Catholic charisms through institutional programs and processes. He has been a Summer Fellow of the Peabody College of Education at Vanderbilt University and a National Data Institute Fellow.  He has also served in professional roles at Creighton University, University of Notre Dame, Saint Joseph’s College of Maine, Ave Maria University, and University of Hartford. He is currently a Peer Reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission and a Policy Advisor for the Association for Institutional Research.

 

Ben Akers Associate Professor of Theology, Augustine Institute 

Ben was born and raised in Virginia, received a liberal arts education at Christendom College with a theology major and philosophy minor, then a Master of Arts in Theological Studies with a concentration in Sacred Scripture from Christendom. Working as a FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) missionary at the University of Denver and the University of Colorado, Boulder (2001-2004) heightened the desire to participate in the New Evangelization through teaching. Then he went to study in Rome, Italy where completing a Licentiate degree in Sacred Theology (S.T.L. 2009) from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum). and is currently working on a doctoral dissertation.

In Italy, he directed the Christendom College Rome Program, leading students’ intellectual formation, the development of their spiritual lives and engagement with the Italian culture. Living and studying in Europe, in the heart of the Catholic Church, has encouraged Ben to teach theology in a way that integrates history, art, literature and spirituality. He’s also directed the Denver Catholic Biblical School and Catechetical School in the Archdiocese of Denver and regularly served as an adjunct instructor at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary and St. Francis School of Theology. Ben enjoyed the experience of teaching and encountering students in a range from grade school to graduate school. And, now is enjoying, with wife Heather, the blessing of three wonderful daughters.