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Conference Speakers and Special Guests

  • Learning. Networking. Fellowshipping.
  • Dr. John C. Bowling 

    Dr. Bowling has served as president of Olivet Nazarene University since 1991. Under his leadership, the University has flourished, as evidenced by record enrollments, new buildings, expanded degree programs, increased academic standards, improved athletic programs, extraordinary morale among staff and students, and more. A strong and effective leader, he has a background in pastoral ministry and college teaching.

    He is also a popular speaker and writer with the unique ability to blend biblical insight with the practical demands of daily life. He is the author of a new book, ReVision: 13 Strategies to Renew Your Work, Your Organization, and Your Life, which will be presented to each conference participant. His other books include: A Way with Words; Grace-Full Leadership; Packin’ Up and Headin’ Out — Making the Most of Your College Adventure; and Making the Climb, which chronicles his ascent to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, the tallest peak in Africa and one of the great mountains of the world. He also has published more than 60 articles.

    Dr. Bowling holds a bachelor's degree, two master's degrees, two earned doctorates and was chosen as a Resident Fellow for post-doctoral studies at Harvard University. In 2007, he was honored by Olivet with the conferral of the Doctor of Divinity degree as part of the University's Centennial Celebration.

    In addition to his work at Olivet, Dr. Bowling is active with a variety of professional organizations and local community activities, including his work as a board member board of People's Bank in Kankakee. He is chairman of Nazarene Publishing House’s board of directors in Kansas City, Mo., and is a member of the Church of the Nazarene Foundation board of directors.

    Ray Hilbert 

    Ray Hilbert is the CEO and co-founder of Truth@Work, a not-for-profit organization headquartered in Indianapolis, Ind., which he founded in 1998. Truth@Work equips Christian business owners and leaders in building their organizations on proven biblical principles, while integrating their faith into the daily operations. It is one of America’s fastest growing marketplace ministries, with nearly 700 participating members in 30 chapters across the country.

    Ray is uniquely qualified to speak to the issues of faith integration and business ethics, principles and practices. Over the past decade, he has worked on a national and international basis with CEOs, business owners, executives and leaders, equipping them to build strong organizations and integrate their personal faith into their corporate culture and daily business principles.

    As CEO of Truth@Work, Ray has coached more than 500 business owners/executives in a wide variety of industries (both public and private companies). He is the author of more than 100 articles and training curriculum sessions on a wide variety of business issues addressed through a faith-based approach, including topics such as hiring, firing, marketing, personal integrity, organizational development and many more.

    In July 2007, Thomas Nelson Publishers released his book The Janitor: How an Unexpected Friendship Transformed a CEO and His Company, which he co-authored with his close friend, Todd Hopkins. The book has been published in six languages, and is an international best seller with more than 1 million copies sold worldwide.

    Previously, Ray was a regional director for Promise Keepers. In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, he owned two businesses in which he focused on integrating his Christian faith into the daily operations. Additionally, he has worked in some of America’s leading corporations, conducting training and seminars in several industries — including automotive production, healthcare, manufacturing and various service organizations.

    Ray received his M.B.A. from Taylor University, while in college at Anderson University. He excelled in baseball and played for the 1986 traveling Athletes-In-Action team. Currently, he enjoys reading, working out and spending time with his family. He and his wife, Beth, reside in Fishers, Ind., with their son, Drew (13), and daughters, Mackenzie (11) and Brooke (8). They volunteer with several religious and business organizations.

    Martin Ozinga, III 

    Shortly after graduating from Calvin College, Mr. Ozinga took over his family’s business and grew the company to what it is today — Ozinga, the largest privately-owned, family-owned concrete company in the U.S. Established in 1928 in Evergreen Park, Ill., as a small coal and coke yard, the company survived the Great Depression and World War II before becoming one of the first ready mix providers in the region. 

    Since 1952, Ozinga has faithfully met the needs of builders throughout Illinois, Indiana and Michigan, holding to the longstanding commitment to provide top-quality concrete building materials at a fair price. Ozinga recently transitioned to the fourth generation, when Mr. Ozinga stepped down from day-to-day leadership of the company and passed the reins of leadership to his six sons — all of whom are engaged in various aspects of the family business.

    Along the way, Mr. Ozinga has also maintained an active involvement in church, state and society, including a run for a U.S. Congressional seat in 2008. He is a respected public leader who will share his Christian faith along with his experience from a distinguished career in business, politics and philanthropy. Several of his family members will join him in the interview/discussion led by Professor Charles Emmerich. Each university represented will receive a copy of a video and a discussion guide.

    Professor Charles J. Emmerich - Ozinga panel moderator

    Charles J. Emmerich, J.D., LL.M. is a professor of legal studies and executive director and founder of The Center for Law and Culture at Olivet Nazarene University. He teaches courses in politics and law, and serves as the pre-law director. He is also the founder of the Center, a nonprofit organization housed at Olivet and dedicated to inspiring virtuous leadership in public life by providing worldview education in the Judeo-Christian tradition.

    In particular, the Center’s programs educate future public leaders in how to glorify God, serve their neighbors and care for creation. After earning a B.A. (theology and archeology) from Wheaton College, he completed a law degree (J.D.) at the University of Idaho, and an advanced law degree (LL.M.) in constitutional law and history at the University of Pennsylvania. While at Penn he studied under esteemed Federal Appellate Judge Arlin M. Adams.

    Prior to accepting the position at Trinity, Professor Emmerich served as national director of law student ministries for the Christian Legal Society, as pre-law director at Wheaton College, at Trinity International University, and as executive director of the Center for Church/State Studies at DePaul University’s College of Law.

    He has published extensively on worldview formation and, along with his mentor Judge Adams, has co-authored articles and a book on the historical development of religious liberty. Published by the University of Pennsylvania Press and graced with a foreword by former Chief Justice Warren E. Burger, A Nation Dedicated to Religious Liberty has been praised by prominent legal scholars and cited in several cases of the United States Supreme Court.

    Dr. Susan Drake Emmerich - 
    Saturday morning devotional speaker 

    A nationally known speaker on faith-based environmental stewardship, Dr. Susan Drake Emmerich is currently the CEO of Emmerich Environmental Consulting and director of the Creation Care Program for The Center for Law and Culture housed at Olivet Nazarene University. She is a 1997 Harvey Fellow and former assistant professor of biology at Trinity Christian College, where she taught environmental science and directed an environmental research partnership between Trinity and the Lake Katherine Nature Preserve.

    Dr. Emmerich is the co-producer of the 2007 Redemptive Film Award, Peace On Earth Film Award and ReelHeART Film Festival award-winning documentary “When Heaven Meets Earth: Faith and the Environment in the Chesapeake Bay.” Her action- and faith-based stewardship research work is also the subject of the Telly and Aurora Award winning PBS documentary on the Tangier Watermen’s Initiative, “Between Heaven and Earth: The Plight of the Chesapeake Bay Watermen.” As part of her work with the Tangier watermen, she founded and directed the Tangier Watermen’s Stewardship for the Chesapeake, a nonprofit organization.

    In addition to her 10 years in the federal government, Dr. Emmerich is a former U.S. representative to the United Nations and U.S. negotiator for the Department of State. She was a negotiator at the 1992 Earth Summit, Biological Diversity Convention, Global Climate Convention and the chair of the Secretariat for the International Coral Reef Initiative. She also worked for the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, the World Bank, Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Interior as a presidential management fellow. She also served as the director of the East Coast office of the Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies and as vice president of the Au Sable Institute’s board of directors.

    Dr. Emmerich and her husband, Professor Charles Emmerich, and their daughter, Lydia, from China live in Bourbonnais, Ill.

    George Kalemkarian - Friday morning devotional speaker 

    George has been the Director of Quality Services at Deere & Company in Moline, Ill., since 1992. This team supports John Deere units in quality management systems, precision metrology, supporting hardware and software for 150 coordinate measuring machines, and Six Sigma education and project application. 

    He was a co-leader in developing the John Deere Quality & Production System (JDQPS), an enterprise-wide endeavor to improve the John Deere customer experience and company business. His area of interest is converting data into information that helps the company make good decisions.

    Serving five years as a Malcolm Baldrige Quality Examiner, and three years as a judge for the Illinois Lincoln Quality State Award, he is certified by the American Society for Quality as a Quality Manager, Reliability Engineer and Quality Engineer. He received his B.A. from Temple University in mathematics and physics, and his M.A. in applied statistics from the University of Iowa.

    George has been married to June for 38 years, and they have two grown daughters and two young grandsons. He enjoys singing choral music, bicycling, reading and exercising at the Y.

    Dr. Ovid Young - Organist

    One of the most versatile musicians before the concert public today, Dr. Ovid Young — pianist, organist, composer and conductor — has performed in virtually every sizable city in the United States, as well as in England, Germany, Austria, France, Switzerland, The Czech Republic, Japan, South Korea, Russia, Canada, Denmark, India and the Caribbean. His nearly 7,000 concert appearances over the past three decades have placed him before hundreds of thousands of music lovers. Millions more have witnessed this veteran performer on television throughout America, Australia, Western Europe and the former Soviet Union.

    As an organist, Dr. Young has played many of the largest and most interesting organs in the U.S. (including the instruments at the Crystal Cathedral, the Meyerson Symphony Center in Dallas, the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church of Fort Lauderdale, the U.S. Air Force Academy Chapel and the famed Wanamaker Grand Court organ in Philadelphia), as well as numerous cathedral and church organs in Europe, most recently in a concert tour of Swiss and German instruments.

    His orchestral appearances — in addition to a 10-year musical directorship of a Chicago-area symphony — include the English Chamber Orchestra, the English Symphony Orchestra, the Seoul (Korea) Philharmonic, the Bohuslav Martinu (Czech Republic) Philharmonic, the Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Aarhus (Denmark) Symphony, the Florida Philharmonic and symphonies of Pittsburgh, Denver, Phoenix and Nashville, among many others.

    His many compositions and arrangements are published by several American publishers. A composer of orchestral scores for several feature-length films, he is widely-remembered as the pianist-arranger-conductor for the prominent operatic singing duo of Robert Hale and Dean Wilder in more than 3,000 performances on three continents and 15 albums of recorded music.

    Dr. Young and his wife, Laura, are the parents of two sons, Kirk and Erik, and reside in Bourbonnais, Ill., where he is artist-in-residence in the College of Arts and Sciences at Olivet Nazarene University.

    Jenni Till - Soprano concert artist 

    Captivating, thrilling and endearing — these are the words that define the quality of Jenni Till's voice and the message she conveys through song. Born into a musical family, she started her career by singing in the choirs and ensembles of Dallas' First Baptist Church, where her father was minister of music. Since those early years, she has developed a multi-faceted music ministry which has taken her around the world.

    She has distinguished herself on three continents in leading roles of the major choral works including Handel's Messiah; Dubois' The Seven Last Words of Christ; Mendelssohn's Elijah and Hymn of Praise; Bach's St. Matthew Passion, St. John Passion and Magnificat; Haydn's Creation; Mozart's Requiem, Solemn Vespers, Exsultate, Jubilate; and Beethoven's Ninth Symphony.
    Among the eminent conductors with whom she has appeared are Sir David Willcocks, with whom she performed Mozart's Solemn Vespers in Coventry, England's famed cathedral; and Laszlo Heltay, with whom she collaborated on the same work on the stage of Dallas' celebrated Meyerson Symphony Center. She has made highly regarded appearances with numerous orchestras, including the New Japan Philharmonic in Tokyo; the Fort Worth Symphony; the Fort Worth Chamber Orchestra; the Gold Coast Symphony of Florida; the orchestras of Plano, Irving and Richardson, Texas; the Orchestra of New Spain; and the Nashville Symphony Orchestra.

    As a leading artist in sacred music, Jenni has sung for countless thousands in churches, denominational gatherings and conferences throughout the United States and Canada, Japan and Korea. She has been the featured soloist at Billy Graham Crusades, the Gaither Praise Gathering and Robert Schuller's Hour of Power. Her additional television credits add yet another dimension to her multi-faceted career as a performer and communicator and include “The Coral Ridge Hour,” “The Joy of Music” and Art Linkletter's “Gloria.”

    Her discography includes inspiring recordings of sacred classics, hymns, gospel and Christmas favorites, as well as unique biblical story songs. She maintains a limited schedule of teaching gifted vocalists in the Dallas area. A summa cum laude graduate of Southern Methodist University, she received both bachelor's and master's degrees in vocal performance and was inducted into the honorary Pi Kappa Lambda society.

    Jenni and her husband, Dr. Robert Rasberry, a professor at Southern Methodist University, have two sons, Paul Michael and John Robert, and reside in Dallas, Texas.

  •   Dr. Bowling 

     Dr. John C. Bowling

  •  Ray Hilbert 

    Ray Hilbert

  •  Martin Ozinga III 

    Martin Ozinga, III 

  •  Charles Emmerich 

    Professor Charles J. Emmerich 

  •  Susan Drake Emmerich 

    Dr. Susan Drake Emmerich 

  •  George Kalemkarian 

    George Kalemkarian 

  •  Ovid Young 

    Dr. Ovid Young 

  •  Jenni Till 

    Jenni Till