Darrell Gordon is President & CEO of Wernle Youth & Family Treatment Center, which is a nationally recognized residential treatment facility serving neglected and abused youth primarily in Indiana and Ohio. Under his leadership, Wernle was both a national finalist for the Barbara Allen-Hagen award for extraordinary improvement to facility quality of life and operations and the Achievement of Excellence Non-Profit Organization of the Year Award.
Darrell is an international, powerful change speaker on character development, diversity and leadership empowerment. Darrell earned a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from Notre Dame, a Juris Doctorate from Northern Kentucky Law School, a certification in fundraising management from Indiana University School of Philanthropy and strategic perspective in nonprofit management from Harvard Business School.
Jane Isaacs Lowe has had an extensive career in philanthropy, academics and social work. Prior to her retirement, Jane served on the program staff of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. She was formerly a faculty member at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Social Work where she focused on health care practice and non-profit management. She began her career as a social worker at Mt. Sinai Medical Center (New York City).
Jane has served on the boards of several youth-serving community organizations and earned her doctorate in social work from Rutgers University, a master’s in social work from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree from Cedar Crest College.
Colleen Frankenfield is the President & CEO of Lutheran Social Ministries of New Jersey. She has worked in faith-based healthcare and senior services for over 30 years. While in law school, she worked for the CMS/Maximus as a Medicare Appeals Adjudicator. In addition to practicing law in the area of professional liability, she had the opportunity to work with healthcare providers and educational institutions in matters related to workers compensation, special education, school law and other general corporate practice areas.
Colleen served as a member of several boards, including as the Chair for Leading Age NJ/DE, the Co-Vice-Chair and board member at Felician University and a member of the advisory committee for the College of Arts and Sciences at St. Joseph University. She has been instrumental with several health systems in developing and implementing plans to improve financial viability, while improving the quality of care and services.
The Rev. Jeff Thiemann is President and CEO of Portico Benefit Services, a ministry of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, which provides innovative health and retirement programs to those who serve. He is Board Chair for the Church Benefits Association and is on the Steering Committee of the Church Alliance. He was executive pastor at Saint Matthew Lutheran Church in Walnut Creek, California.
Prior to answering a call to ordained ministry, Jeff worked in a variety of business settings including President and CEO of a Silicon Valley startup and nearly 20 years at Hewlett-Packard. He earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Master of Divinity from Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary and graduated from Harvard Business School’s The General Manager Program.
David Duea is the President & CEO of Lutheran Community Services Northwest. LCSNW provides services to people in Oregon, Washington and Idaho with support to meet life’s most difficult challenges and thrive in communities that are healthy, just and hopeful. David led significant growth for the organization over the past seven years, including bringing Compass Housing under the Lutheran Community Services umbrella, expanding their services to include emergency services and affordable housing.
He holds a B.A. from Pacific Lutheran University in social work and an M.B.A., with a focus on total quality management, from City University. David and his wife Jane live in Tacoma, Washington. They have two adult children that live in Seattle and San Diego.
Dr. Kristen Gay serves as President & CEO of Gemma Services. She has devoted her career to care for children and families, previously at Silver Springs – Martin Luther School prior to its merger with theVillage, and now at Gemma Services.
After receiving a B.A. in psychology from Franklin and Marshall College, and an M.Ed. in psychological services and a Ph.D. in school, community and clinical child psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, Kristen joined the Silver Springs staff in 1999. Kristen has clinical experience in Counseling and School Psychology and has served as an Adjunct Instructor at the University of Pennsylvania.
Kristen’s diverse experience informs her passionate vision for the future of the organization and the myriad of ways through which Gemma Services brings hope and healing to children and families.
Karen Himle is Senior Vice President of Corporate and Government Affairs at Thrivent. She joined Thrivent in November 2014 as Vice President of Corporate Affairs. Karen is responsible for leading the enterprise corporate communications, reputation and public policy, federal and state government affairs and community affairs functions of the organization.
Karen serves as Chair of the Public Affairs Council and Chair of the Governance Committee for Lutheran Services in America (both based in Washington, DC). Karen is also a member of the board of directors of the Basilica Landmark, Greater Twin Cities United Way and the Minnesota Orchestral Association.
The Rev. Rafael Malpica Padilla serves as Executive Director for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Service and Justice Home Area, which fosters and facilitates the ELCA’s engagement in service, promotes efforts to call and act for justice and supports the freedom of Christians to love and serve their neighbor globally and locally.
Pastor Malpica Padilla has served the ELCA as bishop of the Caribbean Synod (1987–1993) and as member of the Churchwide Organization staff since 1993. He holds a Master of Divinity from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia and several honorary doctorates from theological education institutions in the United States, India and Mexico.
Dr. Antonio Oftelie conducts research, teaches and advises on how leaders create exceptional environments for organizational innovation and adaptation. Based in the Technology and Entrepreneurship Center at Harvard University, Antonio has developed and taught in more than 60 Harvard executive education programs.
Antonio advises senior government and business executives on organizational transformation. In this capacity, he has directly advised three governors, public and private organizations and two White House administrations. Antonio is the current U.S. Federal Monitor for the consent decree overseeing the Seattle Police Department.
Antonio holds a B.S. in Management and Ethics from Crown College, an M.P.A. with a Business and Government Policy concentration from Harvard University and a doctorate in Law and Policy from Northeastern University.
The Rev. Kevin D. Robson has served as the Chief Mission Officer for The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) since 2015, supervising the Synod’s Offices of International Mission, National Mission and Pastoral Education as well as its Mission Advancement (donor engagement and fundraising) and Communications units. He had previously served God’s faithful as a parish pastor for LCMS congregations in Minnesota from 2001 onward.
Prior to earning his MDiv at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne in 2001, Pastor Robson enjoyed a broad career in R&D, product management, sales, business development and consulting with Union Carbide Corporation (Chicago, IL) and Air Products and Chemicals (Allentown, PA). He is a graduate of The University of Chicago Booth School of Business (MBA Finance and Marketing, 1988) and The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (BS Chemistry, BSE Chemical Engineering 1982).