presenters & SESSIONS
Stacy Hawkins Adams
Award-winning author Stacy Hawkins Adams crafts fiction and nonfiction that help readers find relevance in their own stories. Her nine women’s fiction novels and two nonfiction books include the Essence bestseller The Someday List, Target stores Recommended Read Coming Home, and the perennial reader favorite Watercolored Pearls. Her signature nonfiction title is Who Speaks to Your Heart? Tuning in to Hear God’s Whispers. Stacy’s literary endeavors include occasional freelance writing for Our Daily Bread and other publications, and mentoring aspiring authors. She recently curated the publication of On Womanhood, an anthology that features her mentees’ work. Learn more at StacyHawkinsAdams.com.
“Unleash Your Writer Within.” Learn why telling your story matters and create a practical plan for getting your book publication ready. Receive tips and takeaways that will help you take your novel, short stories or nonfiction work from idea stage to finished draft.
Bruce R Barbour
Publishing Industry Expert
Bruce R Barbour has been active in book publishing for more than forty years, holding executive positions at several publishing houses, including Fleming H Revell Company (family owned business founded in 1870), Barbour and Company (co-founder and Exec VP), Thomas Nelson (VP, Publisher), and Random House (VP, Publisher). He founded Literary Management Group, a full-service literary agency and publishing consulting firm that has represented best-selling authors and properties, consulted with publishing houses including Zondervan, Thomas Nelson, Hachette, and others, as well as packaged books for speakers, associations, and corporations.
“Pros and Cons: Traditional Publishing, Christian Publishers, and Self-Publishing.” Contrast and compare the strengths and weaknesses of each model and see the publishing disciplines authors need to understand before they decide which option works best for them and their book. Also consider questions about contracts and rights, editorial, marketing, sales, royalties, production, and distribution.
Pastor at The Bridge Church in Brooklyn, New York
Rasool Berry serves as a teaching pastor at The Bridge Church in Brooklyn, New York. He is also the host of the “Where Ya From?” podcast, is featured in the “Juneteenth: Faith & Freedom” documentary, and the docuseries “In Pursuit of Jesus.” He serves as the Director of Partnerships and Content Development at Our Daily Bread Ministries.
“Juneteenth: Faith & Freedom.” Berry introduces the multiple award-winning documentary that is part of his work as a writer, editor, producer, content developer, podcast host, and minister.
Founder and CEO of Embolden Media Group
Jevon Bolden, founder and CEO of Embolden Media Group, a boutique publishing consulting firm providing quality content development and literary services, helps authors and publishers reach growing, diverse, and global audiences. A book editor, writer, literary agent, and author of seven books, Jevon also founded Christian Publishing Professionals of Color, and serves as a consultant to the Evangelical Christian Publishing Association (ECPA) and their committee for increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in Christian publishing. Jevon obtained her bachelor’s degree in English, with a minor in sociology, from the University of Alabama, Huntsville.
“Questions and Answers.” Publishing leader Jevon Bolden answers questions about writing, publishing, and agency (and provides one-on-one appointments; first-come, first-served.
Wife, Mother, Teacher, and Author
Sara Chinakwe, wife, mother, teacher, and author of You Come From Greatness, encourages women and children to pursue God’s purpose and embrace their God-given identity. Her deep love of teaching and decades-long career in education was shaped at California State University Stanislaus. Since then, she has used writing as a medium to propel God’s followers forward as they journey with Him. You can find Christian resources for mothers and children at sarachinakwe.com.
“You Come from Greatness.” Sara joins Waterbrook Publishing editor Kim Von Fange to discuss the dynamics and process of development of Sara’s most recent book release.
suZan johnson cook
Pastor, Author, Mentor, US Ambassador
Pastor for 3 NYC congregations, writer of 17 books, media commentator, guest lecturer, and more, the Honorable Suzan Johnson Cook has served Harvard’s Divinity School as Associate Dean, the New York City Police Department for 21 years as Chaplain, and was the first female President of the largest gathering of African American clergy in the world, the historic Hampton University Ministers Conference. Her alma mater is Union Theological Seminary. The first female and African-American to hold the position of U.S. Ambassador for International Religious Freedom, she was nominated by Secretary Hillary Clinton, and appointed by President Barack Obama. Follow her on @Ambassador Sujay, Facebook, YouTube, Linked In, and Instagram. Connect at CharismaSpeakemail@example.com or https://www.linkedin.com/in/ambassadorsujay/
“The Pulpit and Publishing” Panelist
Lisa A. Crayton
Author, and award-winning Freelance Writer
Lisa A. Crayton is an author, and award-winning freelance writer called to Christian, and general markets. She is the author of nineteen nonfiction books, including eighteen for kids and teens. Crayton provides editing, and sensitivity/authenticity reading services to publishers of fiction and nonfiction. Passionate about helping writers succeed, she loves coaching writers through the manuscript development and/or book proposal process. Crayton has years of ministry experience, and recently completed her church’s “Ministers in Training” program. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing from National University, and a Bachelor of Arts dual degree, in Public Relations and Journalism from Utica College.
“What the Best Writing Coaching Looks Like.” shows how working with a writing coach can help you improve your writing—and projects! The best writing coaching is a collaborative effort between writer and coach. What can you expect from the experience, and how can you ensure it meets the goal of improving a manuscript or book proposal? Lisa will explore these and other topics while discussing the promise and pitfalls of working with a coach, and best practices for success.
Artist and PIC Advisor
David Dinkins is a prayerful consultant to PIC’s growth. David’s award-winning artistry graces the website; has been published with his writing at New Hope Digital Art Forum; displayed in Birmingham, Alabama’s Fine Arts Museum; garnered festival awards; and helped raise funds for Alabama’s and Haiti’s poor. As an award-winning public speaker performing Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s speeches since eighth grade, David is pursuing voice and other artistic work. He attended the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, before moving to his family’s acreage in Michigan. David loves Jesus, reading, laughter, gaming, and the outdoor environment on his family’s rural southwest Michigan property.
David S. M. Dinkins has been continuing in prayer for PIC and its future gatherings, and will lead us in prayer.
Xochitl (So-Cheel) Dixon
Xochitl (So-Cheel) Dixon celebrates diversity and inclusion, alongside her beautifully diverse family and her service dog, Callie. Crossing cultural, generational, and international lines, Xochitl’s biblical encouragement and Scripture-based prayers inspire the development of deeper, authentic relationships with God and others. As a writer for Our Daily Bread, she has also contributed to God Hears Her, authored: Different Like Me (available in Spanish), 2021 ECPA Christian Book Award Children’s Book finalist; Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace; two more picture books releasing in 2024; and more. She enjoys loving Jesus, people, and connecting with readers at www.xedixon.com.
“Writing in Rhyme: One Beat at a Time.” A rhyming picture book requires more than ensuring the last word of one sentence rhymes with the last word of another sentence. Every syllable of every sentence in every stanza works to draw readers into a storyline with a clear beginning, middle, and end. In “Writing in Rhyme One Beat at a Time,” you’ll learn how to avoid the pitfalls of writing in rhyme and decide if your book would be better if written in prose. You will also discover how repetition, sound, sentence structure, and creative word choices can create lyrical stories that will captivate readers and publishers.
In “Sharing Your Faith through Flash Fiction,” we will examine the elements of great fiction used by the Master of storytelling‒Jesus. Discover how you can minister to readers now, while improving your craft, building your platform, gaining publishing credits, and earning income. Learn how to captivate readers using intentional framing and twists, as you craft a clear beginning, middle, and end with 1,000 words or less. Receive tips for submissions, including the guidelines to a publisher that reaches over 18,000 readers and pays for nonfiction and fiction short stories. These skills can be applied to whatever genre you prefer writing.
Sharon Norris Elliott
Dr. Sharon Norris Elliott, award-winning author, popular speaker, Bible teacher, and founder/CEO of Life That Matters Ministries and AuthorizeMe® Literary Firm is a cum laude graduate of Biola University, holds a Doctor of Theology degree, and is a religious broadcaster. Sharon is a literary agent, editor, and mentors up-and-coming writers and speakers. She coaches writers as they draft their manuscripts, and conducts hands-on masterclasses assisting attendees toward their publishing goals. To date, the agency works with over 60 clients and has contracted over 40 books in just the past 3 years. A retired teacher, she also is on her church’s ministerial staff.
“The Pulpit and Publishing.” Panel with Arthur Jackson, Palitha Jayasooriya, Suzan Johnson Cook, Michael Waters discusses these writers’ ministries and what they write. How they publish, and commit their words to books, and why and how ministers can and should do so.
“How to Become a Professional Freelancer.” After the hour you spend in this seminar, you will have all the tools you need to begin your professional writing career. Learn about the supplies you’ll need, the paperwork that will make you look like a pro, record-keeping, and much, much more. The time you spend here will increase the time you’ll have to write.
Founder of Flagler Law Group
Brian Flagler founded Flagler Law Group in 2006 to serve the legal needs of publishers, designers, producers, and distributors of Christian media. The firm’s three attorneys and paralegal are honored to represent many of the organizations throughout the United States that publish, teach, or distribute Christian books, messages, curriculum, and music. Before founding the firm, Brian served as VP of administration and general counsel of Multnomah Publishers after practicing intellectual property and corporate law at global law firms in Portland and Atlanta. He holds a JD from the University of Virginia School of Law. Brian and his wife, Amy, have three sons and enjoy hiking mountain trails and paddling rivers and lakes surrounding Asheville, North Carolina.
“Rights: Key Principles and Best Practices.” Publishers are merchants of copyrights. Anyone who has served in the industry for some time is familiar with certain norms for author contracts, hiring independent contractors, and royalties. However, the legal rights and best practices which underlie those norms are less often understood. In this session, a publishing lawyer with 25 years of experience will summarize the key principles of copyright, trademark, and libel, discuss best practices to consider implementing in your contracts and publishing organization, and touch on the implications of AI for publishers.
Writer and Life Coach
Nancy Gavilanes is an accomplished writer, a gifted communicator, and a passionate life coach and Bible school instructor who loves to encourage, empower, and inspire people as they walk by abounding faith, hope, and love and dare to live their God-given dreams. Nancy has a master’s degree in journalism from New York University and has written for publications including The New York Times. A new contributing writer for Our Daily Bread Ministries, Nancy has written for SpiritLed Woman and Charisma websites. Author of five Christian living books and devotionals, she’s working on her first book for the NavPress/Tyndale Alliance.
“Cultivating Your Writing Gift.” If you’re feeling called to share your faith and God-story through the written word, it’s important to stir up your writing gift and steward it well. In this session, you’ll learn tips for beating writer’s block from author, Our Daily Bread contributing writer, and life coach Nancy Gavilanes, who will share tips on how to nurture your writing gift. The insights Nancy shares will encourage and inspire you as you step out in faith on your writing journey.
Public Speaker, Coach, and Business Strategist
Aurora Gregory’s career as a communicator started when she was fourteen. As an eighth-grader, she was a finalist in a speech contest. She didn’t win, but the experience launched her into the world of sharing stories and ideas. Today, she is a speaker coach and business strategist, teaching experts how to land stages, connect with audiences, and build businesses they love. She is co-author of “Get Picked: Tips, Tricks and Tools for Creating an Irresistible Speaker Proposal.” When she’s not talking, you’ll find her serving at her church, hiking the foothills in her hometown, or watching classic movies.
“From Text to Testimony: Embody Your Words and Share God’s Work in Your Life.” This illuminating session guides authors to delve into their written text and transform it into compelling spoken stories they can use to build a presentation based on their book. Learn to adapt your topic so it’s appropriate for a variety of speaking opportunities, stay faithful to your personal journey, and share the remarkable story of God’s work in your life that serves as the foundation of your book.
Conference Worship Leader
Worship. My name is Michelle Holt and I was once asked the reason behind singing and with tears in my eyes, I said, “I want to bring Him glory.” Jesus tells us, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do NOTHING” (John 15:5, emphasis mine).
Michele will open the conference with worship.
Associate Publisher for Children and Wander at Tyndale House Publishers
Linda Howard brings an extensive background working with children and children’s products to her role, including teaching, marketing, and product development for several brands. Linda leads the kids’ team, developing overall strategy for Tyndale Children and Wander, acquiring projects, and overseeing product development of all books. She has also worked in marketing and built strong relationships with several of Tyndale’s publishing partners. She oversees the Compassion International Publishing partnership and has worked with best-selling authors Ann Voskamp, Mike Nawrocki, Amy Parker, Dandy Daley Mackall, Esau McCaulley, and more.
“Writing a Good Proposal.” What do you do when you have a great idea for a book and want to get it in front of a publisher? You put together a great proposal that will grab attention and make editors want to see more! This session will walk through the information needed to create an attention grabbing pitch that will significantly increase your marketability to publishers. Come ready to learn more and walk away with a winning plan to write your own winning proposal.
Pastor and Consultant, Our Daily Bread Writer
Arthur Jackson is a regular contributor to Our Daily Bread devotional publications and more. When Arthur is not writing, much of his time is spent serving pastors and churches through his coaching and consulting work at PastorServe, a ministry that exists to “strengthen the Church by serving pastors.” Before retiring from local church ministry in 2016, Arthur served for twenty-eight years in pastoral ministry in the Chicago area. He is a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary and he has been married for fifty-five years to Shirley. They have five adult children, eight grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren, and reside in Kansas City, Kansas.
Arthur has been continuing in prayer for PIC and its gatherings, and will lead us in prayer.
“The Pulpit and Publishing” Panelist
Pastor at the People’s Church in Colombo, Sri Lanka
Palitha Jayasooriya is executive/preaching pastor at the People’s Church in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Palitha Jayasooriya is also an experienced radio broadcaster, having served for more than twenty years at the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation. He is happily married to Regina and blessed with two sons, Sheriah and Sheramiah. Pastor “Pali’s” articles and sermons have been published on Preaching Today, Our Daily Bread, Crosswalk, You Version, Thoughts About God, and Sermon Search. He also hosts the three-minute Strength From God’s Word podcast on YouTube. Palitha’s favorite hobbies are spending time with his family and listening to music. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Palitha has been continuing in prayer for PIC and its gatherings, and will lead us in prayer.
“The Pulpit and Publishing” Panelist
Senior Editor for Judson Press
Rachael Lawrence serves as senior editor for Judson Press. Before coming to Judson, she was a pastor, academic journal editor, program evaluator, and classical singer. Ordained in the American Baptist Churches USA, she pastored Enfield American Baptist Church and Second Baptist Church of Suffield, Connecticut, congregations and was managing editor for the American Journal of Evaluation. She primarily edits Christian nonfiction genres. Her PhD is in education policy and leadership from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. She is also a classically trained singer, holding a Master of Music in voice performance from the University of Akron.
“With Friends Like These?: Finding Peaceful, Friendly Working Relationships with Editors.” Authors develop strong feelings about the strength of the message, phrasing, tone, and clarity in their work. Some feel reluctant to subject their work to criticism for personal reasons or develop apprehension about what an editor might say regarding their work. Negative stereotypes about editors and their intentions abound, making working with an editor seem scarier. We’ll address ways of making peace with the editorial process and your editor, discuss real-world scenarios in which editor-author relationships have succeeded or gone awry, and practical ways to make this essential part of the publishing process less painful for all involved.
Ralph Ellis Miley
Senior Pastor, Co-Founder New Creation Comics
Ralph Ellis Miley, senior pastor, La Mirada Foursquare Church, formed New Creation Comics, newcreationcomics.com, with Kevin Yong. Their comic book studio creates faith-based, culturally diverse stories across a wide range of story genres and art styles: “Street Fury”; “Proverbs and Parables”; “New Crew”; and “New Visions.” Ralph joined the nonprofit Christian Comic Arts Society (CCAS) in 1984 (christiancomicarts.com) and presents at Comic Con International in San Diego, Wonder Con in Anaheim, and more. CCAS helps communicate the message of the gospel. Miley was a middle school teacher for the Los Angeles Unified School District for 33 years.
“Christian Comic Creations.” New Creation Comics co-founder Miley shares thoughts about the current state of comic and graphic novel publishing with a focus on David C. Cook Ministries’ highly successful Action Bible and Sunday school curricula, as well as Kingstone Publishing’s graphic novels and comic books. Optimistic and realistic, he weighs the challenges and opportunities for independent publishers of comic content, including crowd funding, and shares tips on goal-setting, publishing, and defining expectations.
Author, Blogger, Teacher
Karen Moore is the author of more than one hundred inspirational and devotional books, is a speaker for women’s groups, and she spent several years with American Greetings, DaySpring, and Gibson Greetings, writing and publishing thousands of greeting cards. She wrote Write Greeting Cards Like a Pro and teaches an online course on greeting card writing. Her most recent daily devotional, Prayers to Strengthen Your Soul (BroadStreet Publishing), offers prayers to help readers draw near to God and find strength in His presence. Karen invites you to subscribe to her free blog called Turning Up the Light at www.karenmooreauthor.com
“Write Greeting Cards Like a Pro.” author Karen Moore provides a brief overview of the industry and some of the opportunities it holds for writers and freelancers, including writing Christian greeting cards. She will talk about humor writing and the potential for freelancers, writing for kids, for licensed properties, as well as writing seasonal cards–Christmas, Valentines, and other holidays. Moore will share about finding your best writing style and how to submit your writing to greeting card companies.
Author, Speaker, and Prayer Leader for PIC
Mabel Ninan is an author, speaker, and host of the podcast, Far from Home with Mabel Ninan. In her award-winning book, Far from Home: Discovering Your Identity as Foreigners on Earth, Mabel draws from her personal experience as an immigrant and examines the lives of biblical heroes to shed light on how we can find purpose and joy as sojourners on earth. A contributor to Guideposts’ All God’s Creatures: Daily Devotions for Animal Lovers since 2022, Mabel’s articles have appeared in Upper Room, CBN.com, LeadingHearts.com, and (in)courage.me. She lives in Northern California with her husband and son. Connect with her at www.mabelninan.com.
Mabel has been continuing in prayer for PIC and its gatherings, and will lead us in prayer.
Associate Editor at InterVarsity Press
Nilwona Nowlin (MDiv, MACF, MNA) is an associate editor at InterVarsity Press (IVP). In this role, she does both acquisitions and development for trade books. She has written for the Christian Community Development Association (CCDA), Covenant Companion, Christianity Today, UMI, the Evangelical Covenant Church, and the Redbud Post. Nilwona is also a per diem hospital chaplain and a licensed minister.
“Picking a Publishing Partner.” You’ve answered God’s call to write, and you want to get published. Now what? This workshop will help you prepare for your publishing journey by walking you through the elements of a successful book proposal and providing an overview of InterVarsity Press.
Katara Washington Patton
Executive Editor, Our Daily Bread Ministries
Katara Washington Patton serves as the executive editor for VOICES from Our Daily Bread Ministries and with Our Daily Bread Publishing. Her most recent book, Navigating the Blues: Where to Turn When Worry, Anxiety, or Depression Steals Your Hope, debuted on Amazon’s Bestseller’s List for New Releases. Katara graduated summa cum laude from Dillard University with a Bachelor of Arts in mass communications and English. She earned a Master of Journalism from the Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, and received a Master of Divinity from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, where she received the outstanding preaching award.
“Breaking into the Industry.” Gain wisdom and suggestions on getting started in Christian publishing as veteran editor and author Katara Washington Patton shares her journey in the industry as well as ways she has observed other writers find meaningful and purposeful work as editors, writers, and authors.
Managing Editor, Harambee Press
Edwina Perkins is the co-director of Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference, coordinator for their Mentoring Moments, and manager for their Sensitivity Between the Lines. She is the acquisitions editor for Harambee Press, an imprint of End Game Press. A longtime member of Word Weavers International, she serves as a member of the advisory board. An award-winning writer, experienced teacher, speaker, freelance editor, and sensitivity reader, Edwina is published in numerous publications. She has a passion for addressing the need for diversity in the publishing industry.
“The Importance of Fiction Techniques in Non-fiction.” shows you how to engage the reader from the first word of your manuscript. A great nonfiction book draws the reader in from the start. We’ll look at how some fiction-writing techniques can create more engaging and impactful nonfiction books.
Author and Ministry Consultant
Randy Petersen has authored or co-authored more than sixty books for the Christian market over a long career that includes writing curriculum, magazine articles, blogs, websites, and plays. Recent books include Forty Days, Forty Words (Our Daily Bread, 2023) and The Printer and the Preacher (Nelson, 2015). Working for American Bible Society, he was an architect of the lookinside.bible website and a co-creator of the Loving the Neighbor Who Doesn’t Look Like Me Bible study. Now, as a free-lancer, he writes the State of the Bible survey reports for ABS and consults and copywrites for various companies and Christian ministries.
“Find Your Way in the Changing Maze of Publishing.” Everything is different, and things keep changing. How can you find a foothold on your climb toward success? Publishers now talk about “platforms” and social-media presence. Why don’t you have a podcast yet? And does good writing even matter anymore? A veteran writer in the Christian market gets back to basics—not gaming the system but managing your own abilities and possibilities. How can you be true to your purpose, develop supportive professional relationships, and build a productive career?
“Writing About the Bible with Creativity and Humor.” With some parts of Scripture, if you’re not laughing, you’re reading it wrong. The Bible teems with wit and surprise. Do you take it seriously enough to enjoy its humor? This isn’t just telling a dumb joke to warm people up for a theology lesson. This is unpacking the creative essence of God’s Word—the off-beat, the quirky, the unexpected—and celebrating the joy of divine grace confronting human foibles. As you write about the Bible, free yourself up to find the fun there.
Publisher of Judson Press
Cheryl Price is the publisher of Judson Press. Previously, she was vice president of content at Urban Ministries, Inc. Cheryl has authored and co-authored several books. She has taught at McCormick School of Theology in Chicago, has served full-time on the ministerial staff and as the Christian education director at Metropolitan Baptist Church, Washington, DC; Mount Zion Baptist Church, Seattle, Washington; and Lutheran and United Methodist churches. Presently, Cheryl serves as an adjunct professor at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, Illinois. She is a Christian educator, preacher, teacher, and workshop leader and enjoys spending time with her grandchildren.
“New Beginnings.” will focus on new opportunities for authors to publish with Judson Press, AI- Artificial Intelligence, and ways to help writers thrive and move forward in their thoughts and actions with their writing, plus tips for marketing your books.
Editor at Tyndale House Publishers
Jonathan Schindler is a nonfiction book editor at Tyndale House Publishers. He has worked with new and established authors in a variety of nonfiction genres. Jonathan’s writing has appeared in Leadership Journal online and The Englewood Review of Books.
“Editing as Diplomacy.” Editing a book requires more than a red pen. It requires diplomacy, as both writer and editor are invested in the outcome and want to deliver the best book they can. In this session, we will look at how author and editor can work together collaboratively in a relationship that is often thought to be at odds. What Tyndale is acquiring.
Kim Von Fange
Associate editor at Waterbrook Press
Associate editor Kimberly Von Fange’s editorial experience spans the gamut from nonfiction books, including Simple Money, Rich Life by Bob Lotich and Awaken a Better You by BJ Thompson; to children’s books such as The Inventions of God (and Eva) by Dave Connis with art by Amy Domingo and This Train is Bound for Glory by Alice Faye Duncan with art by Paul Kellam; to Ink & Willow gift products like 40 Days of Intentional Living and Simply Christmas. Other authors with whom she works include journalist Chanté Griffin, Lisa V. Fields, and children’s authors Sara Chinakwe and Katy Rose.
“You Come from Greatness.” Kim and author Sarah Chinawke dialogue about the development of this children’s book.
Designer at Our Daily Bread Ministries
Hailey Smith, designer at Our Daily Bread Ministries, writes: “My love for design started to blossom at a young age while scrapbooking with my family. As I grew older, my interest in graphic design grew stronger, and by the time I reached 8th grade, I had already made up my mind to pursue it as a career. After attending college, I began my journey as a designer in Philadelphia and worked on numerous projects in different industries such as real estate, higher education, ministry and more. What I love most about design is the versatility of its principles, which can be applied to various forms and mediums.”
“Design Matters.” Hailey Smith moderates a session with the Our Daily Bread Ministries creative team, to share “How Design Works with Editors” and “Why Good Design Matters” Hailey Smith, and the ODBM design team leaders also offer appointments for portfolio review. Please sign up for and provide your portfolio in advance of a scheduled one-on-one Zoom session to discuss what art directors are seeking when looking at creative talent. Designers can share their portfolio work here to apply for a review, on a first-come, first-served basis.
Director of Print Design for Our Daily Bread Ministries
Heather Brewer is the Director of Print Design for Our Daily Bread Ministries. Prior to ODB, she was at Baker Publishing Group, starting her career as a typesetter and later an Art Director responsible for designing covers for nonfiction titles. Heather’s love of publishing extends from design to writing and she is the author of Love Is Powerful(Candlewick 2020) and Meet Me In Your Heart (Candlewick 2024).
“Design Matters.” Panelist
Art director for Our Daily Bread Ministries
Patti Brinks is the art director for Our Daily Bread Ministries. A graduate of Kendall College of Art and Design, she has collaborated with numerous New York Times best-selling authors during her years in publishing. Patti and her husband live in the Grand Rapids area and have two wonderful daughters and sons-in-law and two grandkids.
“Design Matters.” Panelist
Yulise Reaves Waters
Assistant Pastor at Abundant Life A.M.E. Church in Dallas, TX
The Reverend Atty. Yulise Reaves Waters is an Assistant Pastor at Abundant Life A.M.E. Church in Dallas, Texas, and serves as Chief Innovations Officer of the Lone Star Justice Alliance. Previously, Waters was an Assistant City Attorney/Lead Community Courts Prosecutor for the City of Dallas where she co-founded the Second Chance Community Improvement Program, the first-ever felony community court in Dallas County and young adult specialty court in Texas. She has received numerous honors including the Outstanding Leader Award of the Prairie View A&M University Ministers Conference and Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law’s Distinguished Alumni Emerging Leader Award.
“Creating Justice.” We live in a fast-paced, multi-tasking, multi-media generation that demands significant mental stimulation to be or become engaged. In fact, research shows that from the year 2000 to 2015 human attention span decreased from 12 seconds to 8.25 seconds, .75 less than that of a goldfish. How then, can we effectively use our voices to “Do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with the Lord?” as Scripture declares? This session will highlight techniques and tools for amplifying your voice and the voices of others.
Michael W. Waters
Pastor, Author, Speaker
Dr. Michael W. Waters is the founder and lead pastor of the Abundant Life A.M.E. Church in Dallas, Texas. A pastor, professor, award-winning author, activist, and social commentator, Waters’s words of hope and empowerment inspire international audiences. He has appeared on ABC Nightline, BBC World News, CBS This Morning, MSNBC Live, NPR, the NBC Nightly News, and PBS Newshour, and he has addressed such esteemed institutions as the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, the United States House of Representatives, and Oxford University. His forthcoming book is Bend Without Breaking: Seven Steps for Thriving through the Struggle.
“The Pulpit and Publishing” Panelist