July 28-30, 2014
Luther Seminary


Daniel Bell | Michael Binder | Sharron R. Blezard | Tammy L. Devine |
Terri Martinson Elton | Mark Hanson | Rolf Jacobson | David LoseCatherine Malotky | Efrem Smith | Glenn TaiblRobert Veninga 

Daniel Bell, Professor of Theology and Ethics, Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary

The Rev. Dr. Daniel Bell Jr. is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church. A graduate of Stetson University, he earned the Master of Divinity degree from Duke Divinity School and a Ph.D. in theology and ethics from Duke University. He has authored several books, including "Liberation Theology After the End of History" (Routledge, 2001); "Just War as Christian Discipleship" (Brazos, 2009); and "The Economy of Desire: Christianity and Capitalism in a Postmodern World" (Baker Academic, 2012).


Michael Binder, Co-Pastor, Mill City Church, Minneapolis

Michael Binder is currently working on his dissertation in Luther Seminary’s Ph.D. program. In his studies, he is focusing on missional theology and leadership development.






  Sharron R. Blezard, Pastoral Staff, Lower Susquehanna Synod, ELCA

As a writer, editor and workshop facilitator, the Rev. Sharron Blezard is passionate about helping others integrate stewardship into all aspects of the faithful and intentional life. She writes a weekly lectionary reflection for Stewardship of Life and blogs about incorporating generosity, gratitude and simplicity into daily living at Adventures in Thanks-Living. She previously served congregations in North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Tennessee. She holds a Master of Divinity from Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg and a Master of Arts in writing from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.



Tammy L. Devine, Wellness Manager, ELCA

Tammy Devine is a diaconal minister, serving through Portico Benefit Services. Devine is a strategic and systemic whole-person promoter of well-being through education and inspiration throughout the ELCA. She collaborates with thought leaders to facilitate and motivate whole-person lifestyle choices and serves as an external wellness consultant and coach to integrate well-being throughout the ELCA. Devine is a registered nurse. She received a Bachelor of Arts from Augustana College in Sioux Falls, S.D., and a master’s degree in leadership from Luther Seminary. She has completed preparation as a parish nurse/coordinator and spiritual coach.


 Terri Martinson Elton, Associate Professor of Children, Youth and Family Ministry, Luther Seminary

Prior to serving at Luther Seminary, Terri Elton served as associate to the bishop in the St. Paul Area Synod and at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Burnsville, Minn., in various roles. Elton's published works include "To Know, To Live, To Grow" confirmation curriculum and "What Really Matters," a book for congregational leaders co-authored with the Rev. Mike Foss. She has also authored several articles in the areas of leading change and rethinking faith formation.

Elton has a Master of Arts and Ph.D., both in congregational mission and leadership from Luther Seminary. She is interested in rethinking congregational ministry in the 21st century. Her dissertation studied missional leadership within ELCA churches. Her current scholarly interest lies at the intersection of missional leadership and ministry with those in the first third of life.



Mark Hanson, Former Presiding Bishop, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

Mark Hanson served as presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) from 2001-2013. From 2003-2010, he was president of the Lutheran World Federation, a position he held concurrently with his position as presiding bishop. Prior to his current appointment, he served as bishop of the St. Paul Area Synod of the ELCA. A graduate of Augsburg College, Hanson was a Rockefeller Fellow at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, where he received the Master of Divinity degree. He also attended Luther Seminary and was a Merrill Fellow at Harvard Divinity School in 1979. He has received several honorary degrees, including Doctor of Humane Letters from Augsburg College, Wittenberg University and Grand View University; Doctor of Humanities from Capital University; Doctor of Divinity from Lenoir-Rhyne College, Wartburg Theological Seminary, Susquehanna University, Wartburg College and The Academy of Ecumenical Indian Theology and Church Administration. He is the author of “Faithful Yet Changing: The Church in Challenging Times” and “Faithful and Courageous Christians: in Unsettling Times.”



Rolf Jacobson, Associate Professor, Old Testament, Luther Seminary

Rolf Jacobson joined the Luther Seminary faculty as assistant professor of Old Testament in July 2003. Jacobson earned his bachelor's degree from the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minn. in 1987. He holds a master of divinity degree from Luther Seminary (1991) and a doctor of philosophy degree from Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton, N.J. (2000). His teaching interests include the Psalms, Old Testament prophets, biblical poetry, biblical theology, and biblical narrative.



David Lose, Marbury E. Anderson Chair in Biblical Preaching, Luther Seminary

David J. Lose joined the Luther Seminary faculty in July of 2000 as assistant professor of homiletics. In May 2005, he received the Marbury E. Anderson Chair in Biblical Preaching and was named Academic Dean in June of the same year, a post he held through 2008. He is the author of "Making Sense of Scripture" (2009) and "Confessing Jesus Christ: Preaching in a Postmodern World" (2003). His teaching interests include preaching, biblical interpretation, and the relevance of Martin Luther's theology for a postmodern world.




Catherine Malotky, Philanthropic Adviser, Luther Seminary

Catherine Malotky is an ELCA pastor who began her professional ministry as a Lutheran high school teacher. She earned a Master of Arts in theater from Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. She left teaching to receive her Master of Divinity at Luther Seminary, and then served congregations in inner city Minneapolis and rural southwestern Minnesota, sharing a pastoral call with her spouse. During these years, she also served as an instructor in homiletics at Luther Seminary. Prior to joining Luther Seminary as a philanthropic adviser, she worked as an editor at Augsburg Fortress Publishers, a communicator and educator at the ELCA Board of Pensions and as a retirement planning manager. She is making an ongoing contribution to youth and adult curriculum for more than 25 years as a writer. In addition to her regular column, "Amen," in the ELCA women's magazine, Gather, she edited the 2011 e-book, "How Much is Enough?—A Deeper Look at Stewardship in an Age of Abundance" and was a contributing writer to the ELCA's "Competencies of a Well-formed Stewardship Leader" (2009).



Efrem Smith, President and CEO, World Impact

Efrem Smith is an internationally recognized leader who uses motivational speaking and preaching to equip people for a life of transformation. He also consults on issues of multi-ethnicity, leadership, and community development for churches, educational institutions, and other organizations. Currently, he serves as the President and CEO of World Impact, a urban missions organization committed to the empowerment of the urban poor through the facilitation of church planting movements and leadership development. Efrem is also an Itinerant Speaker with Kingdom Building Ministries. He is the author of the books, "Raising-up Young Heroes," "The Hip Hop Church," "Jump," and "The Post-Black and Post-White Church."

Efrem is a graduate of Saint John's University and Luther Seminary. Currently, he is a doctoral student in Church Leadership at Bethel Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Glenn Taibl, Co-Director, Center for Stewardship Leaders, Luther Seminary

Prior to joining the Center for Stewardship Leaders team this year, Glenn Taibl has served as a parish pastor for 31 years in rural, medium size community and suburban congregations. In addition to parish ministry he also served as a Philanthropic Adviser at Luther Seminary for nine years and most recently as an Interim Pastor. His stewardship background also includes an active role in the Stewardship of Life Institute at Gettysburg, PA Glenn is a native of Chicago and graduate of Valparaiso University ’67 and Luther Seminary ’72.


 Robert Veninga, Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota

Dr. Robert Veninga is an award-winning author and past president of the St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church Council and the Chair of the Board of Trustees at the University of Sioux Falls, S.D. His upbeat presentation will focus on how to accept the first penny from those who do not tithe and how to create a culture of abundance in churches struggling to meet their budget.