Speakers List

2019 University of Dallas Ministry Conference Speakers List

Are you a speaker for the 2019 University of Dallas Ministry Conference? Please check our Speaker Resources page with more information.

Below you will find the list of the confirmed 2019 speakers, their biographies, and the talks they will be presenting. The speakers are listed in alphabetical order by last name.

Check back regularly to see updates.


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 Picture Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
  Dr. David Anders TBD Bio Coming Soon

Monica Ashour

*Sponsored by TOBET

Teaching Theology of the Body (TOB) to Tots, Tweens, and Teens

A Theology of the Body Response to Sensitive Topics: Giving Truth and Love

Former teacher of 25 years and speaker for the Theology of the Body Evangelization Team (TOBET), Monica Ashour brings poignant, practical tips to educators. She spearheaded and authored 18 books for The Body Matters, a K-8th Grade Theology of the Body (TOB) program . Ashour was named a top TOB speaker for youth by Our Sunday Visitor (2010), received the Pope John Paul the Great Distinguished Speakers' Award at Benedictine College (2012), participated in the Lay Leaders International Forum with Cardinal Arinze in Rome (2012), was a speaker for the International Symposium on TOB in Rome (2012), served as a TOB expert for a committee for the Pontifical Council for the Family (2015), and was a panelist for “The Church’s Teachings on Human Sexuality” at the Convocation of Catholic Leaders with Archbishop Cordelione and Jason Evert (2017). Her work has been lauded by Dr. Peter Kreeft and Dr. Janet Smith (2015) and by Papal Biographer, George Weigel in First Things Magazine (April 2019).

Dr. Ansel Agustine

*Sponsored by Loyola Press

Walking Together In Faith Dr. Ansel Augustine is from New Orleans, LA where is the former Director of the Office of Black Catholic Ministries. He has worked in ministry for over 20 years primarily focusing on youth, campus, and young adult ministry. He has served on the boards of the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry and the National Catholic Young Adult Ministry Association. He serves on the Faculty of the Institute for Black Catholic Studies at Xavier University of Louisiana. He has written various articles related to ministry and is a national speaker.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography

John Barone

*Sponsored by Loyola Press

Including Diverse Learners Affirms Their Entire Family’s Catholic Identity John is the Director of the Learning Resource Center at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory in Houston and Executive Director of the DeBusk Enrichment Center for Academically Talented Scholars. He has extensive background in child/adolescent development and teaching students with neurological differences.
  Bruce Baumann

Cultivating a Mission Driven Staff (Round Table Session)

Building Your A-Team (Round Table Session)

Bruce Baumann is the Director of Faith Formation at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Plano, TX. He received his Master’s Degree in Pastoral Studies from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN and has been involved in professional ministry since 1996. Bruce is a catechetical instructor in the Dallas Diocese and an adjunct faculty member for the Certificate of Pastoral Ministry Program at the University of Dallas. He also teaches at Holy Trinity Seminary in Irving, TX and is a Coach for the Living Your Strengths movement. Bruce is the author of the recently published book “Catholic to the Core”. He is passionate about training ministry leaders and has had the joy of presenting workshops and retreats at conferences and parishes around the country.
  Father Michael Baynham Entering the Darkness: Engaging Suffering as a Keystone of Effective Youth Ministry Father Michael grew up in Coppell, Texas and is the youngest of four boys. He attended public schools in Coppell and graduated from Coppell High School in 2008. He first heard a calling to the priesthood in the tenth grade, and after high school he entered Holy Trinity Seminary at the University of Dallas, where he earned a B.A. in Philosophy & Letters, graduating in 2012. Father Michael then continued his formation for the priesthood at Theological College at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., where he earned a Bachelor of Sacred Theology and a Master of Divinity in 2017. Father Michael was ordained a priest by Bishop Edward Burns on June 3, 2017 at the Cathedral Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Dallas. After ordination, he served as Parochial Vicar at St Joseph Catholic Church in Richardson, Texas. He now serves as Parochial Vicar at St Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Plano, Texas and as Chaplain at St John Paul II High School in Plano, Texas.
  Dr. Kelly Bentel Identification and Intervention for Children and Adolescents Experiencing Anxiety and Stress Dr. Kelly Bentel is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Texas. She received her undergraduate degree in Psychology and Sociology from Southern Methodist University, her master’s degree in Counseling from the University of North Texas, and her doctorate degree from Texas Woman’s University in School Psychology. Dr. Bentel worked in the Diocese of Dallas for over 10 years, as a teacher and school counselor. She is currently in private practice in Dallas where she specializes in working with children and families. Dr. Bentel consults with schools to provide strategies to assist children in the classroom setting, as well as provide teachers with techniques when working with children with a variety of struggles impacting their learning. Additionally, she conducts educational evaluations to identify learning differences. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling and spending time with her husband and two-year-old son.

Nancy Bird

*Sponsored by RCL Benziger

Helping Young Disciples Live Their Faith: Service Ideas That Make a Difference

Catechist Wellness as a Way of Life

Nancy Bird has been involved in religious education as a catechist, parish catechetical leader and youth minister. She combines practical experience, creativity and motivational enthusiasm to energize those called to embrace and live their Baptism joyfully. Presently she serves as Director of Training and Professional Development at RCL Benzinger Religion Publishing Company, resides in Tallmadge Ohio and continues to be a volunteer catechist. 
  Dr. Christie Bonfiglio All Are Welcome: Including and Serving Students with Disabilities in our Catholic Schools Dr. Christie Bonfiglio serves as faculty at the University of Notre Dame. She directs the Office of Professional Standards and Graduate Studies and launched the Program for Inclusive Education (PIE) in 2016, which advocates for inclusion of struggling learners and those with disabilities in Catholic schools. Dr. Bonfiglio teaches across multiple programs and provides professional learning opportunities to schools and dioceses nationally. Trained as a school psychologist, Dr. Bonfiglio's areas of expertise include academic and behavioral intervention through multi-tiered systems of support. She is well-versed in collaboration and child-study teams. Dr. Bonfiglio has served a variety of students and programs from gifted to struggling to those eligible for special education in both public and private schools. She is grateful to be using her knowledge and skills to serve Catholic schools in the pursuit of Catholic education.
  Beth Burau  Tech Tools, Not Toys: Effective Tech Integration in the K-12 Classroom As Bishop Lynch High School’s Instructional Technology Coordinator, Beth Burau manages the technology integration within the curriculum as well as creates and implements professional development opportunities for the faculty and staff with the ITeam. Burau, who has been teaching since 2000, also teaches German at the school. Since beginning her teaching career, she has taught various content areas from PreK students to adults. In addition to presenting at both NCEA and NCEA STREAM conferences, Burau has presented at the Checkpoint Charlie Foundation in Berlin, Region 10’s Private School Showcase, TCEA, ACTFL, and the University of Notre Dame. Burau holds a M.Ed. from the University of Notre Dame, where she also earned her Bachelors in English and Computer Applications. She is a TCEA certified Campus Technology Specialist, Certified Microsoft Innovative Educator, and Notre Dame ACE Melody Teaching Fellow.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
   Padre Ernesto Maria Caro  TBD  Bio Coming Soon
  Andrea Chavez-Kopp Heart and Soul: Accompanying Youth in a Digital World Andrea Chavez-Kopp serves as the Director of Formation and Digital Engagement for the National Catholic Education Association. She has served in several leadership capacities within schools and parishes in her 19 years of teaching and ministry experience. Andrea has earned the distinction of an ISTE Certified Educator by the International Society for Technology in Education and serves as a national thought leader, writer and consultant in the areas of technology and ministry.

Sonja Corbitt

*Sponsored by Ave Maria Press

Healing the Father Wound

Exalted, How the Power of the Magnificat Can Transform Us,
Mary’s Song Verse by Verse

How to Pray Like Mary



Fulfilled: Uncovering the Biblical Foundations of Catholicism

Sonja Corbitt is the Bible Study Evangelista and creator of the LOVE the Word® Bible study method and journal. She’s a Catholic Scripture teacher with a story teller’s gift – a Southern belle with a warrior’s heart and a poet’s pen. A best-selling author, her weekly CatholicTV and radio show and other Bible study resources are created with you in mind - bites of spinach that taste like cake - to help you “love and lift all you’ve been given.” What's an "evangelista"? Find out at biblestudyevangelista.com, where you can also catch her newest study series.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
   Amy Ekeh 10 Positive Perspectives on Pain: Biblical and Practical Advice for Embracing Life’s Challenges Amy Ekeh is the associate editor of Little Rock Scripture Study, a Bible study program published by Liturgical Press. She teaches New Testament for the Hartford Catholic Biblical School and Sacred Heart University. Amy is a columnist for Catholic Digest (“Bible in 5”) and has had her work published in a variety of Catholic publications including Magnificat, Catechist Magazine, and St. Anthony Messenger. Her most recent book is a 3-session Bible study for individuals or groups entitled Finding Peace: Letting Go of Stress and Worry (Liturgical Press). Amy has an M.A. in theology from The Catholic University of America and a B.A. in theology from the University of Dallas. A proud Texan, Amy currently resides in Connecticut with her husband and their four children. Amy’s blog can be found at amyekeh.com.


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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
   Michael Fagella-Luby All Are Welcome: Including and Serving Students with Disabilities in our Catholic Schools Dr. Faggella-Luby is a Professor of Special Education and Director of the Alice Neeley Special Education Research and Service (ANSERS) Institute at TCU. He teaches courses related to preparing educators to evaluate, select, plan, and implement research-based methods and instructional materials for teaching students with and without disabilities who are at risk for failure. His scholarly interests focus on learning disabilities, literacy, reading education, special education, diverse learning needs, instructional design, secondary education, and school reform. Dr. Faggella-Luby’s primary research interest focuses on embedding instruction in learning strategies into subject-area courses to improve reading comprehension for all levels of learners. He is a former Catholic School administrator and teacher of both English and Chemistry.
  Charles Finck

Living With Forgiving: Recognize What You May Be Doing Instead of Forgiving

Living With Forgiving: Why It's Important To Forgive

Living With Forgiving: The Prayer—Six Steps To Forgiving

Charles F. Finck M.S.— Counselor, teacher, author of the book, "As We Forgive Those," husband to Deborah, father to their very special son Jonathan.
Charlie's purpose at the Dallas Ministry Conference is to share the important message of forgiving. Mother Teresa stated, "If we really want to LOVE we must learn how to FORGIVE." A key to all successful relationships is the ability and willingness to forgive. Charlie will be sharing three (3) talks, one (1) on Friday and two (2) on Saturday.
"By choosing to forgive we are giving God a clear path to do a miracle in us and through us."

Father Richard Fragomeni

*Sponsored by RCL Benziger

TBD Bio Coming Soon

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
   Ann Gohsman TBD Bio Coming Soon

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography

Matthew Halback

*Sponsored by Sadlier

Mercy, Accompaniment, and Catechesis Deacon Matthew Halbach, Ph.D. was ordained deacon, in 2018, for the Diocese of Des Moines, IA. He is the Senior Director of Catechesis for William H. Sadlier Inc., and a national author and speaker on the topics of mercy, accompaniment, clergy abuse, evangelization and catechesis. Deacon Halbach is also a member of the USCCB National Advisory Council (2019-2023). He earned his Ph.D. in Catechetics from The Catholic University of America in 2014, and is a reviewer for The International Journal of Evangelization and Catechesis. Deacon Halbach is a husband and father of six children.
  Tori Harris-Gray  The Gifts & Charisms for Parish Evangelization Author, worship leader and speaker, Tori Harris remains committed to the core of her mission: Through story and song to create environments of receptivity to the Holy Spirit. Tori's sophomore, independent release, Sweet Dolor, debuted at #2 on iTunes Christian & Gospel charts, becoming one of the top 150 albums on all of iTunes during that time. Later, her interest in teaching others to operate in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, led her to found Arise Ministry and author her first book, Holy Spirit 101. The text is presently the only Catholic curriculum with ecclesial approval which trains the faithful to operate in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Tori currently resides in Dallas, Texas with her growing family and directs ARISE Worship Ministry out of Mary Immaculate Catholic Church.
 Sherry Hayes-Peirce Sherry Hayes-Peirce Family Rules for Social Media Sherry Hayes-Peirce, Chief Inspirational Officer of Church Social Tips has answered the call to use her treasured time and talents to glorify the Lord with her life. This is her second year speaking at the University of Dallas Ministry Conference. She speaks at Catholic conferences across the country on the topic of social media and technology to practice digital evangelization and discipleship. Sharing her tips in blogs for Catholicmom.com, Hawaii Catholic Herald, Angelus News, as a featured guest on Catholic radio and current digital strategist for her home parish of American Martyrs Catholic Community in Manhattan Beach, California. 
  Sister Miriam James Heidland TBD Sr. Miriam James Heidland is a former Division 1 athlete who had a radical conversion and joined the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity (SOLT) in 1998. Her story has been featured on EWTN's The Journey Home, SEEK Conference, USCCB Convocation, Relevant Radio and other outlets. She holds a Master's degree in Theology from the Augustine Institute and speaks regularly on the topics of conversion, authentic love, forgiveness, healing (and sports!). Sr. Miriam's podcast, Abiding Together, can be found on iTunes and her book, Loved As I Am, can be found on Amazon. She tweets at @onegroovynun
  Adrian Alberto Herrera TBD Bio Coming Soon 
   Ali Hoffman For a Time Such as This Ali Hoffman has a passion for Jesus, the Catholic Church, her family, donuts, and Chipotle, in that order. She served with NET Ministries (www.netusa.org) and upon graduating from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota with a degree in Catholic Studies and Family Studies, she moved back home to the GREAT state of Texas and is now a co-youth director at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic church in Carrollton, Texas. She does modern calligraphy and digital design. You can find more of her work on Instagram at TheOodlesOfDoodles or her website www.alihoffman.co
 Mike Hopper, MS, ATC, LAT Mike Hopper, MS, ATC, LAT Head Games: Returning to the Classroom After a Concussion Mike Hopper is the Head Athletic Trainer at Bishop Lynch High School in Dallas, TX. He holds a bachelors degree in Athletic Training from Southeast Missouri State University and a masters degree in Pediatric Sports Medicine from University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine. A Certified Athletic Trainer, he is also licensed in the state of Texas. Under his lead, BL has created a comprehensive Sports Medicine program collaborating with the school nurse and external healthcare providers. In addition to his work at BL, Hopper is a vocal advocate in social media for athletic training and pediatric sports medicine.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
  Paul Jarzembowski

Strengthening Ministry with Youth and Young Adults: Implementing Pope Francis' "Christus Vivit"

Finding Hope in the Ashes: A New Way to Strengthen Outreach to Young Adults

Paul Jarzembowski is the lead staff for youth and young adult ministries at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). As such, he assisted the bishops in Rome for the 2019 Synod on "Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment" and serves as the national coordinator for the United States' engagement in World Youth Day. Paul has spoken at or consulted with over 300 parishes, dioceses, universities, organizations, religious congregations, local and national conferences, and ministry communities across the United States, Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Vatican. He serves on the boards of the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry (NFCYM), the National Catholic Network de Pastoral Juvenil Hispana (LaRED), and the National Advisory Team on Young Adult Ministry, and has been an adjunct faculty member at Loyola University Chicago. Paul and his wife Sarah live in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, D.C.
  Chris Johnson Trench Warfare : A Roundtable on the "New" Evangelization (Round Table Session) Chris discovered ministry his senior year of high school and never looked back. After graduating from Texas A&M and a short stint in Burkina Faso with the Peace Corps, he started his professional ministry career in Bryan, TX with Ablaze Ministries. Since then he has worked in both the Tyler and Dallas Diocese, diving into middle school, high school, and young adult ministry. He has a beautiful wife, Madelyn, and two daughters (Amelia and Helena).

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography

Charleen Katra

*Sponsored by Loyola Press

Including Diverse Learners Affirms Their Entire Family’s Catholic Identity (Round Table Session)


Charleen is an Associate Director for the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston’s Office of Evangelization and Catechesis, where she's directed the Ministry with Persons with Disabilities for over twenty years. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the National Catholic Partnership on Disability.
  Anne Kelley  TBD  
  Dr. Peter Kreeft

Moral Apologetics Today

How to Make Catholics out of Ex-Catholics

Born in 1937 in Paterson, NJ, I was raised Calvinist and found my way into the Church as Newman did, through the historical facts about the Catholicism of the early Church. Degrees from Calvin College, Yale University, & Fordham. Published 80+ books and 4 children. Philosophy professor, surfer, chess player, sinner, pretty good at all 4. My passport to Heaven looks like a wafer of bread.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
   Dr. Rick Lopez TBD Bio Coming Soon

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
   Kristy Martinez TBD Bio Coming Soon
Katie Prejean McGrady

Katie Prejean McGrady

*Sponsored by Ave Maria Press

Christus Vivit: The Essential Truths for Ministry to Young People Today

Millennials & Gen. Z: born with a phone in their hand

The Life You Save May Be Your Own: Self-Care in Ministry



Katie Prejean McGrady is an international Catholic speaker and author of 3 books from Ave Maria Press. After working as a theology teacher and youth minister for 6 years, Katie now travels the world speaking to audiences of all ages and sizes about faith, culture, family, evangelization, youth and young adult ministry, education, and discipleship. Katie was sent by the USCCB as one of 3 representatives to the Vatican's Pre-Synod gathering of young adults in March of 2019 and has worked extensively in the continued work surroundoung the Synod. She writes for America Magazine, Blessed is She, the Grotto Network, Life Teen, and Epic Pew, and hosts the popular Catholic podcast The Electric Waffle. She has her degree in Theology from the University of  Dallas and lives in Louisiana with her family. 
  Deacon Alfred Mitchell Homiletics and Storytelling Deacon Alfred Mitchell was ordained as a permanent deacon for the Archdiocese of Atlanta in May, 1987. He is assigned to Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Decatur, GA. He also serves as a volunteer chaplain in the Interfaith Chaplaincy at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. Deacon Mitchell was director of deacon personnel for the Archdiocese of Atlanta from October, 1990 through December, 2005. He was a participating director in the National association of Diaconate Directors (NADD). He was NADD's president in 2003-2004. Other association memberships include the National Diaconate Institute of Continuing Education (NDICE), serving as its president in 1997-1998. Deacon Mitchell has led retreats for deacons and wives since 1991 in more than three dozen dioceses and archdioceses in the US and Canada. Storytelling is an integral part of these retreats.
  Deacon Arturo & Esperanza Monterrubio

Espiritualidad Misionera


Esperanza y Arturo han estado casados por 38 años y han trabajado para la Iglesia Católica durante los últimos 28 años. Los dos obtuvieron una maestría en estudios teológicos de la Universidad de St. Thomas en Houston, Texas. Ambos han trabajado para la Arquidiócesis de Galveston-Houston y recientemente empezaron a trabajar juntos para los misioneros Maryknoll en la formación de Discípulos Misioneros.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
 Dana Nygaard Dana Nygaard, MA, LPC Strong Marriages: The Foundation of Strong Catholic Families Dana Nygaard is a Licensed Professional Counselor with a private practice in Plano, Texas. She received a Bachelor of Secondary Education from the University of North Texas and her Master of Art in Counseling from Dallas Baptist University. She is the founder and retreat facilitator of Cana Marriage Retreats and proudly serves the Diocese of Dallas as a Marriage Readiness Assessor.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
 Dr. Jo Ann Paradise

Dr. Jo Ann Paradise

 *Sponsored by Our Sunday Visitor

Forming a Spiritual Child in a Secular World

Effective Family Catechesis Is More Than One Gathering

Unlocking the Religious Imagination: Facilitating that Faith Formation of Adolescents

 Dr. Jo Ann Paradise is a National Consultant for Our Sunday Visitor Curriculum Division and works with the product development team in creating resources for children and their families. She is the General Program Editor for Encounter With Christ, OSV’s completely new sacrament preparation program. Jo Ann has served as catechetical leader in the Diocese of Pittsburgh for over 32 years. A teacher at both the grade school and high school levels in Catholic schools as well as an adjunct faculty member of several universities in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Roy Petitfils

*Sponsored by Ave Maria Press

"The Question Behind the Question": Tools Needed to Identify and Address the Real Fears, Questions, Hopes and Dreams of Today's Youth

"The Question Behind the Question": Tools Needed to Identify and Address the Real Fears, Questions, Hopes and Dreams of Today's Youth

Roy has worked with young people for over 25 years as a youth minister, campus minister, teacher, school administrator, school counselor and now as a psychotherapist in private practice. He has published five books including his latest Helping Teens with Stress, Anxiety and Depression: A Field Guide for Catholic Parents, Educators, Pastors and Youth Ministers. Roy has keynoted many national and international conferences including a 2016 TEDx talk helping adults understand and reach teens. Roy lives with his wife Mindi of 17 years and their two sons Maximillian and Benjamin, in Youngsville, Louisiana.
  Maureen Pratt

Families and Disability: Praying Together, Staying Together

Disability, Aging, and Faith.

Maureen Pratt is an award-winning Catholic journalist and the author of eight books including Salt and Light: Church, Disability, and the Blessing of Welcome for All (Twenty-Third Publications) and Peace in the Storm: Meditations on Chronic Pain and Illness (Image/Penguin Random House). Her syndicated Catholic News Service column “Living Well” reaches readers throughout the world, and her popular workshops and retreats on faith, prayer, and living positively with disability, chronic illness, and pain, encourage participants in faith-based and medical venues throughout the United States. She holds degrees from Georgetown University and University of California Los Angeles and is studying for a M.T.S. at the Jesuit School of Theology. For most of her life, Maureen has lived with serious illness and was diagnosed with lupus more than 20 years ago. She affirms that faith lived through illness and pain brings many blessings, especially joy.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography

 Jayne Ragasa-Mondoy

*Sponsored by Loyola Press

“Take Five”: Basic Principles for Cultivating Catechists

What's Your Story? Bridging Cultural Wisdom and Catechesis through Storytelling

Jayne Ragasa-Mondoy is the Director of Religious Education and Faith Formation for the Diocese of Honolulu with over 21 years of experience in parish and school ministry leadership including curriculum and instruction development and volunteer recruitment and management. She is author of "Cultivating Your Catechists: How to Recruit, Encourage, and Retain Successful Catechists" (Loyola Press, 2017) and contributing author for LP's online blog "Catechist's Journey."
   Chad Riley The Role of Trust in Leadership Succession Planning Currently serving as the principal of Bishop Lynch High School (Dallas, TX), Dr. Chad Riley has served as a teacher and principal at all levels of PK-12 Catholic education for 19 years. He serves on advisory councils for the UDMC and NCEA. His research interests include leadership frameworks, studies in the First Amendment religion clauses, and the intersection of religion with civic life. Dr. Riley may be contacted at chad.riley@bishoplynch.org.
  Ana Marcela Rodriguez, MS, LMFT-A

No más, Mereces vivir en Paz. Una conversación de frente sobre la violencia dómestica.

Ana Marcela Rodríguez, nació y creció en México donde estudió la licenciatura en Psicología en la Universidad de Monterrey. Posteriormente, se fue a vivir a Estados Unidos dónde su pasión por seguir dando terapia y ayudando a su comunidad la llevó a estudiar la maestría en ciencias en consejería en SMU. Finalmente, obtuvo su licencia como terapeuta de familia y pareja asociada en el estado de Texas (LMFT Associate). También, cuenta con un entrenamiento especial en traumas: EMDR. Hoy en día Ana Marcela tiene su práctica privada, Therapy Works Counseling, en Mckinney donde atiende a adolescentes, adultos, parejas y familias en español e inglés. También imparte talleres para parejas, facilita grupos para adolescentes y da pláticas de diversos temas. Ella ha sido aprobada por la Diócesis de Dallas como terapeuta de confianza, así como “marriage readiness asesor”. Como apostolado Ana Marcela adoptó el viñedo de Raquel, donde cada año colabora como terapeuta voluntaria.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
  Gerardo Salazar


Bio Coming Soon
  Jake Samour

Un Encuentro con Jesús en Nuestro Hogar - La Nueva Evangelización por medio de la Iglesia Doméstica

Parejas Caminando juntas en la Fe para realizar su Misión

“Varón y Mujer los creó”: La Teología del Cuerpo y La Cuestión del Gender

Jake Samour es el Director de la Oficina de la Pastoral para Matrimonios y Vida Familiar en la Diócesis de Wichita, Kansas desde Marzo del 2013. Jake obtuvo su maestría en Teología del Instituto Juan Pablo II. Tambien obtuvo su diplomado sobre Estudios de Matrimonio y Familia en Washington, D.C. en donde conoció a su esposa, Ramie. Jake es actualmente candidato para recibir su Doctorado en Ministerio en Oblate School of Theology TX. El y su esposa tienen catorce años de casados y tienen seis hijos.  
   Bernice Simmons

Tools for Our Catholic Journey - Strengthening families' mental and spiritual health.

Our Story: As it Was in the Beginning, Is Now and how will it be. Trauma and the Brain.

Bernice Simmons is a wife of 21 years and mother of 4 children ages 20 – 8. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional. She is a certified PREPARE Counselor, a trained FOCCUS Facilitator and Trainer, as well as trained in Safe Conversations. Over the course of the past 23 years Bernice has worked in Adult Faith Formation as an RCIA Director, Family and Adult Ministry Associate Director, and Adult Faith Formation Director. She is a Marriage Readiness Assessor and Procurator Advocate for the Dallas Diocese Tribunal. Bernice also serves as a speaker for the Catholic ProLife Committee and a volunteer therapist on Rachel’s Vineyard Healing After Abortion Retreats. Bernice presently practices counseling through her private practice, Faithful Changes Counseling, PLLC and is the Director of RCIA at St. Anthony Catholic Church in Wylie.

Jacquelyn Smith

*Sponsored by Catholic Pro-Life Community

Assumption of Chastity: Vocation and Dating in the #metoo Culture


Jacquelyn Smith is the Director of Youth For Life for the Catholic Pro-Life Community, Respect Life Ministry of the Diocese of Dallas, a position she has held since 1999. Pro-Life work is her passion and she feels blesses to have it as her career. She holds a degree in Elementary Education and a Masters in Theology, both from the University of Dallas. She has spoken on Respect Life issues at the University of Dallas Ministry Conference, Teach for Life Conference, and to thousands of youth at parishes and schools. Jacquelyn is Founder and Director of Pro-Life Boot Camp and organizes pro-life trainings and activities for teens. In their personal lives, Jacquelyn and her husband, Andrew, consider their most important pro-life work being parents to 6 wonderful children Earth and 3 in Heaven. 
  Sean Smith  All Are Welcome: Including and Serving Students with Disabilities in our Catholic Schools Bio Coming Soon

Hayley Stewart

*Sponsored by Ave Maria Press

Building Up the Domestic Church Haley Stewart is a Catholic convert, speaker, writer, and mother. She and her beekeeping whisky-making husband live in central Texas on an urban farm and homeschool their four kids. Her writing can be found online at Notre Dame Church Life Journal, America Magazine, Public Discourse, and Aleteia and she’s a frequent guest on Catholic radio. Haley is the author of The Grace of Enough: Pursuing Less and Living More in a Throwaway Culture. You can find her at her blog (Carrots for Michaelmas), her podcast (Fountains of Carrots), or on Instagram or Twitter where she’s @haleycarrots.

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  Speaker Full Name Session Information Biography
  Victoria Tanco

Religious but not spiritual: When routine leaves you wanting more (Round Table Session)

Religioso pero no espiritual: Cuando la rutina te deja con ganas de más.

Victoria Tanco is a spiritual director and founder of Reditus, a ministry of spiritual accompaniment to individuals and groups. She earned a Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Direction from the Aquinas Institute of Theology. She has a Master of Theology degree from the University of Dallas and is a freelance catechist and speaker, teaching in both English and Spanish. She taught theology at Bishop Lynch High School in Dallas. Tanco first heard the call of companioning those who had become distant from their faith, and founded a ministry to individuals returning to the church. She has since made spiritual accompaniment her primary vocation, with the mission of helping persons of any faith tradition recognize God’s love and discern God’s will in their lives.



 Dr. Mayra Thompson

*Sponsored by Catholic Pro-Life Community

The Bioethical Family

La Familia Bioética

La Dra. Thompson es profesora de Obstetricia y Ginecología en U.T. Southwestern, donde se especializa en cirugías mínimamente invasivas y robóticas. Además, atiende pacientes en el Lowe Foundation Center for Women’s Preventative Health Care (una fundación para la atención médica preventiva de la mujer). La Dra. Thompson recibió su licenciatura de la Universidad Northwestern y su Doctora en Medicina de la escuela de medicina Abraham Lincoln de la Universidad de Illinois. Completó su residencia en Obstetricia y Ginecología en el hospital de investigación de la Universidad de Illinois Research Hospital. La Dra. Thompson tiene un interés especial en las necesidades de salud de la comunidad hispana debido a su herencia México-Americana. Es una defensora de todas las mujeres necesitadas, y tiene un interés especial en proteger a los no nacidos. Es activa en la Asociación Médica Católica a nivel nacional y localmente en el Catholic Physicians Guild (gremio de médicos católicos).

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  Father Joshua Whitfield The Way of the Listener: 10 Steps for Listening to Homilies (even bad ones!) Fr. Joshua J. Whitfield is a Roman Catholic priest currently serving as the Pastoral Administrator of St. Rita Catholic Community in Dallas. Unlike most Catholic priests, Fr. Whitfield is married with children. A former Episcopal priest trained for ministry in England, after his conversion to Catholicism, he was ordained a Catholic priest through the Pastoral Provision of Pope Saint John Paul II in 2012. He and his wife Alli live in North Dallas with their four children: Maggie, Peter, Zoe-Catherine, and Bernadette. Originally from Glen Rose, Texas—the son of a football coach—he’s an alum of Texas Tech, the University of Leeds, and Duke University. He is the author of Pilgrim Holiness: Martyrdom as Descriptive Witness (Cascade, 2009) and The Crisis of Bad Preaching: Redeeming the Heart and Way of the Catholic Preacher (Ave Maria Press, 2019). He is also a regular contributor to the Dallas Morning News.
  Dr. J. Lee Whittington Reframing Work as Worship and Witness J.Lee is Professor of Management at the University of Dallas. He focuses his teaching, research, and consulting in the areas of Leadership, Spiritual Leadership, Organizational Behavior, and Leading Strategic Change. His research has been published in The Leadership Quarterly, Academy of Management Review, Journal of Management, Journal of Organizational Behavior, and the Journal of Management, Spirituality, and Religion. He is the author of Biblical Perspectives on Leadership and Organizations (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2015).

While serving as the Dean, J. Lee led the effort for initial accreditation of the University of Dallas College of Business by AACSB. In 2011, he received the Haggerty Teaching Excellence Award at the University of Dallas. In 2019 he was given the Excellence in Teaching Award by The National Society of Leadership and Success. He was recognized as the Outstanding Faculty Member in the Satish & Yasmin Gupta College of Business in 2019.

Theodore James Whapham, Ph.D.

Theodore James Whapham, Ph.D.

*Sponsored by the Ann & Joe O. Neuhoff School of Ministry

TBD (Round Table Session) Bio coming soon 

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   Father James Yamauchi

Engaging the Youth in our Church and Families: Reclaiming the Sacramental Life


Father James Yamauchi is a priest of the Diocese of Dallas and serves as the pastor of St. Martin of Tours Catholic Church in Forney, Texas. The oldest of six children, he grew up in a military family and attended public schools, private schools, and was home-schooled. Father James was ordained a priest on July 16, 2011, and has a degree in canon law.

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University of Dallas Ministry Conference Renamed Dallas Ministry Conference

The University of Dallas and the Catholic Diocese of Dallas, co-sponsors of the University of Dallas Ministry Conference, announced that to better reflect their partnership, the conference will henceforth be known as the Dallas Ministry Conference. The 10th annual conference will be held Sept. 29-Oct. 1, 2016, at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center Dallas.

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