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CBE is proud to feature the following speakers at the 2017 Orlando conference:

Plenary Speakers

Ben Witherington III

Plenary Lecture Title: Women and Their Roles in the New Testament

Workshop Lecture Title: The Social Identity of the Earliest Christians

Ben Witherington is the Amos Professor of New Testament for doctoral studies at Asbury Theological Seminary, and has taught at Duke, Vanderbilt, Gordon-Conwell, and Ashland Seminary. He is a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill, Gordon Conwell, and the University of Durham in England, where he did his PhD on women and their roles in the New Testament. He is an ordained United Methodist minister, and the author of over 50 books on the New Testament. He and his wife of 40 years have also written seven novels together. He has two children, and resides in Lexington, Kentucky.


Joy J. Moore

Plenary Lecture Title: The Story of Us: Why Talking about Mutuality Matters

Workshop Lecture Title: Mediating Gender: The Cult of Inequality and Identity on Screen

Joy Jittaun Moore, PhD (Brunel University/London School of Theology) serves as assistant professor of preaching and academic liaison to the William E. Pannell Center for African American Church Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, CA. She is an ordained elder in the West Michigan Conference of the United Methodist Church. 

Seeking constructive ways forward in the ever-present challenge of being thoughtful and faithful in the 21st century context, Moore's preaching rehearses the narratives of Christian Scripture with its theological impact for challenging the stories that have subverted the Christian imagination. Holding an evangelical Wesleyan theological orientation with interests in North American Christian practices her current research examines the impact of various media forms upon how we assimilate information and what it does to our religious imagination. Considering these interests in biblical studies, practical theology, homiletics, narrative hermeneutics and social media, she is known for love to tell stories with a theological twist!


Gricel Medina

Plenary Lecture Title: Reframing: An Architectural Design Thinking Process of 1 Corinthians 11:11-12

Workshop Lecture Title: In It Together: Widening Our Reach and Our Message

Gricel Medina is an ordained pastor to Word and Sacrament. She was the first Hispanic to be chair of the Evangelical Covenant Church Commission on Biblical Gender Equality (CBGE). 

In her role, she created leadership development material, gave vision and implementation of a CBGE blog, and has contributed numerous writings on the affirmation of women in all areas of leadership within the church. 

Gricel has written for several widely distributed Spanish and English magazines and devotionals. 

She is also an ordained Covenant minister who has served as a Hispanic church planter. Her tenacious work in the area of leadership and community development has extended to public and Christian schools, court systems, and Washington DC. 

Gricel has been married to her husband Lu for 38 years and they have three sons. 


Rebecca Kotz

Plenary Lecture Title: Busting The Gender Box: The Abolition of Sex-Based Hierarchy & Men's Violence

Rebecca Kotz is a victim advocate, writer, and educator who has worked at multiple human rights organizations, trafficking, sexual and domestic violence centers. She currently works at a nonprofit in MN where she counsels survivors of trafficking and the sex industry. Kotz developed the first program for both victims and offenders of sexual exploitation in the area. She is the co-founder of A Light in the Night, an outreach that ministers to women in local strip clubs. She also founded Churches Stand Against Violence & Exploitation, an interdenominational coalition of Christ-followers acting against gendered violence. Kotz trains government agencies, therapists, law enforcement, service providers, students, and churches on men’s violence. She graduated magna cum laude in political science & multicultural studies at St. Cloud State University. 


Jamin Hübner

Plenary Lecture Title: Adventures in Sexist Hermeneutics

Workshop Lecture Title: Complementarianism and “Biblical Truth”

Jamin Hübner is an American theologian, musician, and author from South Dakota. He has three degrees in theology and religion and has taught Greek, systematics, and economics as a professor for the last five years in Rapid City, SD. He is married to Jessica, a narrative therapist with a background in wildlife biology, and they enjoy the simple life in the Black Hills.


Additional Leadership

Taffi Dollar

Devotional Leader:
Title: Gender Roles

Taffi Dollar is a world-renowned author, teacher, and conference speaker. Together with her husband, Creflo Dollar, she pastors World Changers Church International (WCCI) and World Changers Church-New York. WCCI has more than 30,000 active members, and numerous fellowship churches throughout the U.S. and one in Australia. Taffi founded the WCCI Women’s Ministry and Prestige Ministry, both are geared toward assisting and empowering women. She eloquently ministers about women’s everyday struggles and gives heartfelt advice for improving this important aspect of life. Taffi has global influence in ministry and music. She has hosted women’s conferences for the past 20 years, serves as the CEO of Arrow Records, a cutting-edge Christian recording company, and has been a guest panelist for numerous music festivals and workshops.  Additionally, the Atlanta Business League recently voted her one of Atlanta’s most influential women. Taffi lives in Atlanta with her husband and five children.


Julius Kithinji

Communion Leader

Dr. Julius Kithinji is the head of the department of biblical studies and theology and is also a lecturer of biblical studies at St. Paul's University. He is also a Methodist minister at the Methodist Church in Kenya. 



Workshop Speakers

Nilwona Nowlin

Workshop Lecture Title: Ain't I A Woman?: The Imago Dei and/in Black Women

Nilwona Nowlin is a redemptive artist, someone who believes in the power of the arts to bring about positive transformation and God’s shalom in individuals and communities. She is a member of the Christian Community Development Association and is on the leadership team of Kingdom Covenant Church Chicago. Nilwona has a masters in Christian formation and a certificate in justice ministry from North Park Theological Seminary and a masters in nonprofit administration from North Park University’s School of Business and Nonprofit Management.


Mimi Haddad

Workshop Lecture Title: Women’s Leadership: Following the Teachings and Examples of Paul

Mimi Haddad is president of CBE International. She is a graduate of the University of Colorado and Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary (Summa Cum Laude). She holds a PhD in historical theology from the University of Durham, England. Palmer Theological Seminary of Eastern University awarded Mimi an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity in 2013.
Mimi is part of the leadership of Evangelicals for Justice. She is a founding member of the Evangelicals and Gender Study Group at the Evangelical Theological Society, and she served as the convener of the Issue Group 24 for the 2004 Lausanne III Committee for World Evangelization.


Ron Pierce

Workshop Lecture Title: Yielding Personal Authority in a Mutual-Partnership Marriage (1 Corinthians 7:4)

Ron Pierce (PhD, Fuller Theological Seminary) has taught in the undergraduate division of the Talbot School of Theology at Biola University since 1976. He has advocated for biblical gender equality since the 1980s. Ron has authored numerous journal articles, edited and contributed to Discovering Biblical Equality (IVP, 2005), and written Partners in Marriage & Ministry (CBE, 2011). He believes that men and women should share leadership in Christian organizations—including the local church, the home, and society in general—without gender bias or restriction. Ron and his wife Pat have been married since 1969 and have two adult children (Debi and Brett). They live in Fullerton, California and serve as active members of Whittier Area Community Church.


Shi-Min Lu

Workshop Lecture Title: Women’s Role in New Testament Household Codes: A Dialogue with Confucian Filial Piety

Shi-Min Lu is a PhD candidate of the School of Intercultural Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary. The title of her dissertation is “A Chinese Christian Theology of Family on Harmonious Relationship,” which analyzes the oppressive tendencies in Confucian familism, and upholds and at the same time renews Confucian harmony.


Michael F. Bird

Workshop Lecture Title: The Invasion of the Homoians: Trinity and Gender, Again!

Michael F. Bird is a lecturer in theology at Ridley College in Melbourne, Australia. He is the author of Bourgeois Babes, Bossy Wives, and Bobby Haircuts: A Case for Gender Equality in Ministry as well as Evangelical Theology and Romans in the Story of God Bible Commentary series. Michael is an Anglican priest, he is married to Naomi, and they have four children together. In his spare time, Michael enjoys jogging, watching football, and despising coffee.


Ashley Easter

Workshop Lecture Title: The Intersection of Patriarchy and Abuse

Ashley Easter is a writer, blogger, speaker, and abuse victim advocate. She promotes truth-seeking expeditions, advocates for gender equality, and educates the church on abuse. She is the founder of The Courage Conference, an event that empowers survivors of abuse to continue to fight for their healing. She also educates church leaders on prevention and proper response to abuse. 


Rob Dixon

Workshop Lecture Title: The Blessed Alliance at Work: Women and Men Partnering Together to Advance the Mission of God 

Rob Dixon lives in central California with his wife Amy and four kids. As a campus minister with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA, Rob has spent the last 20 years helping college students meet and know Jesus. In his ministry, Rob presents regularly on topics including gender reconciliation, male privilege, and women in leadership theology.

In addition, Rob is almost done with a doctor of missiology degree through Fuller Theological Seminary, where he is focused on discerning the attributes of flourishing male/female partnerships in mission.

In his free time, you will find Rob coaching soccer, going for a run, and blogging at challengingtertullian.com.


Margaret English de Alminana

Workshop Lecture Title: Human Trafficking and the Value of Women

Margaret English de Alminana is an associate professor of theology for the College of Christian Ministries and Religion at Southeastern University. She holds a BA from the University of Pittsburgh, an MA in theological studies and a MA in ministerial leadership from Southeastern University, and a PhD from the University of Wales, United Kingdom, at Glyndŵr. Margaret serves as executive director of the Society for Pentecostal Studies. She served as the senior chaplain of women at Orange County Correctional Facility’s Female Detention Center for several years, overseeing a vibrant ministry to more than 3,000 women in crisis annually, and oversaw an inner-city mission for street women at the heart of Orlando’s red-light district. Margaret has ministered as an associate pastor and also founded an independent ministry in addition to traveling and speaking. Margaret has co-edited a book with Lois Olena, Women in Pentecostal and Charismatic Ministry: Informing a Dialogue on Gender, Church, and Ministry (Brill, 2016), and authored a book, Removing the Veil, (Bridge-Logos, 2008), written numerous articles, and she has written and edited numerous books for others. 


Aloo Osotsi Mojola

Workshop Lecture Title: Bible Translation and Gender, Successes and Challenges—with specific reference to sub-Saharan Africa

Aloo Osotsi Mojola is a professor of philosophy and translation studies at St. Paul’s University (formerly St. Paul’s United Theological Seminary) in Limuru, Kenya and also honorary professor in the Faculty of Theology at Pretoria University, Pretoria, South Africa. He has previously worked as a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Nairobi, Kenya, for 5 years; thereafter, he was a Bible translation consultant and former Africa Translation coordinator for the United Bible Societies for 32 years. Aloo is a director in a Kenyan NGO called Men For Equality With Women (MEW). He is the author of "God Speaks in Our Own Languages—History of Bible Translation in East Africa, 1844 to the Present" (1999, new expanded and revised edition forthcoming). 


Tristen Paige

Workshop Lecture Title: Embracing Your Identity in Christ: Building Confidence and Resilience 

Tristen Paige received her MA in theology and ministry from Fuller Theological Seminary. She is a single mother of one, survivor of domestic violence, and a minister of the gospel. In 2012, Tristen left an abusive relationship and decided to stop looking outside of herself for love and affirmation and instead went on a life changing journey to unleash the power within by seeing her value as God sees her. In 2012, Tristen opened a 501c3 non-profit, Turning Paiges, and has been actively advocating for an empowered community ever since.


Aída and William Spencer

Workshop Lecture Title: Creating Evangelical Egalitarian Scholarship and Scholars

Aída and William Spencer have been married 45 years and been ordained as Presbyterian ministers for almost 45 years. Aída Besançon Spencer is professor of New Testament at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Hamilton and William David Spencer is distinguished adjunct professor of theology and the arts at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Boston, MA. Both are CBE Board of Reference members. For ten years, Bill was editor of Priscilla Papers and Aída was the Priscilla Paper’s book review editor. As well as serving as founding pastors of Pilgrim Church in Beverly, they have established the House of Prisca and Aquila series and the Africanus Journal. They have written or edited many books including Marriage at the Crossroads, Beyond the Curse, Global Voices on Biblical Equality, 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy and Titus, and Redeeming the Screens.


Cynthia L. Westfall 

Workshop Lecture Title: Paul and Gender: Highlights and Bombshells

Cynthia Westfall has recently published Paul and Gender: Reclaiming the Apostle's Vision for Men and Women in Christ. She has been at McMaster Divinity College since 2005, teaching courses in New Testament, Greek exegesis, biblical interpretation and women in minsitry, which are devoted to a commitment to transformation by God's word through its application to all aspects of life and ministry. She has served on the steering committee of the evangelicals and gender section of ETS and serves as its chair.


Paul W. Chilcote

Workshop Lecture Title: The Methodist Defense of Women in Ministry

Paul Chilcote is professor of theology at Asbury Theological Seminary in Orlando. Having been involved in theological education on three continents, he helped launch two new institutions – Africa University (Zimbabwe) and Asbury Theological Seminary (Florida). A recipient of the CBE Lifetime Achievement Award, he is the author of more than twenty books, including the forthcoming Methodist Defense of Women in Ministry. He is a frequent speaker and workshop leader in applied Wesleyan studies.


Johnrice Newton

Workshop Lecture Title: Healing Voices—Abused Women and the Healing Power of Telling the Story

Johnrice Newton was born and raised in Lubbock, TX and is a graduate from Texas Tech University–Lubbock, Texas with a BA degree in social welfare. She graduated from Methodist Hospital School of Nursing, Lubbock TX and has been a registered nurse since 1988. She has been a faith community nurse (parish nurse) since 1998 and was named one of the Great 100 Nurses in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. She obtained masters of divinity at Brite Divinity School-Texas Christian University–Ft. Worth, TX in December 2014.

Johnrice is the president and founder of Tapestry Ministries, Inc. (a 501c3 organization) which hosts the YES (Youth Expecting Success) Program that has provided SAT prep and Life Skills classes to at risk teens, and the Tapestry Women Program that provides support, counseling referrals, and seminars for women abuse victims. She is an author of Healing Voices: Women of Faith Who Survived Abuse Speak Out, Volume 1 edited by J. Harris, which is a collection of stories of eleven women who have survived domestic abuse because of their faith in God.

Johnrice became a licensed minister in 2005 under the guidance of her pastor, Rev. Richie Butler, senior pastor of St. Paul United Methodist Church–Dallas, TX and is the proud mother of four children—Johnice (Jerry), Dwayne, Marcus, and Veronica, and has one grandson, Joshua.

Her stance in ministry and in life is, “I work for God, and I am never unemployed.”


Philip B. Payne

Workshop Lecture Title: Open Q & A: Paul and Gender

Philip B. Payne, PhD in New Testament, University of Cambridge, is well known for his orginal discoveries regarding New Testament textual criticism, the parables of Jesus, and his book Men and Women, One in Christ (Zondervan, 2009). He has taught New Testament in colleges of the University of Cambridge, at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Bethel Seminary, and Fuller Seminary Northwest.


Albert Kabiro Gatumu

Workshop Lecture Title: Ephesians 5:21-33 and Gender Equity: Toward a Mutual, Egalitarian and Gender-Balanced Church Leadership

Kabiro wa Gatumu, PhD in New Testament, University of Durham, UK, is associate professor of New Testament, biblical Greek and biblical hermeneutics in the faculty of theology at St. Paul’s University in Kenya. Wa Gatumu is the author of The Pauline Concept of Supernatural Powers: A Reading from the African Worldview (Paternoster, 2008) and of several peer reviewed articles and book chapters. His latest publications include, “New Testament Evidence of Biblical Equity Revealed in Creation and Redemption” in Jewel Hyun and Diphus Chemorion (eds.) Biblical Equity in Leadership: A Theology and Practice in the African Context (Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock, 2016), pp. 42-55  and  “Structures of Human Existence—Human Agency, Ideology and Institution: A Socio-Theological Study of ‘Supernatural Powers’ from Paul’s Perspective” in Sapientia Logos: A Journal of Biblical Research and Interpretation in Africa, Vol 8.(1) (2016), pp. 1-47. He is the current coordinator of the African Theological Fellowship, East Africa sub-region, and the Anglican Consultative Council Bible in the Life of the Church Project, East Africa Regional Group. He is an ordained priest in the Anglican Church of Kenya.


Amy F. Davis Abdallah

Workshop Lecture Title: Harry Was Wrong: Women and Men as Friends and Colleagues

An inspirational teacher, preacher, and seminar facilitator, Amy F. Davis Abdallah deeply desires to walk the journey of authentic Christian life with others. She takes special interest in the development and needs of women of any ethnicity, age, vocation, or status, as shown in the title of her first book, The Book of Womanhood (Cascade Books, 2015). Amy passionately fulfills the roles of professor, wife, writer, mentor, mother, and whatever else life presents. Find her on the web at amyfdavisabdallah.com and on Twitter @amyfdavisa.


Diphus Chemorion

Workshop Lecture Title: Human Dignity: Interrogating Biblical and Cultural Perspectives on the Creation Mandate in Genesis 1-3

Dr. Diphus Chemorion is an associate professor of Old Testament and dean of the faculty of theology at St. Paul’s University-Limuru, Kenya. He is a co-editor of The Quest for Gender Equity in Leadership: Biblical Teachings on Gender Equity and Illustrations of Transformation in Africa. He is also the author of Community Participation in Scripture Version Design: An experiment in translating Jonah into Sabaot and Introduction to Christian worldview: meaning, origins and perspectives. He holds a master of theology degree from Emory University and a doctor of theology degree from Stellenbosch University in South Africa.


Sue Bailey

Workshop Lecture Title: Fostering Mutuality—How to Create, Organize, and Energize a CBE Chapter

Rev. Sue Bailey is ordained with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC), where she serves as an out-of-bounds evangelist. She received her BA from the University of Michigan and her MDiv from Denver Seminary. After working for a mega-church in the Denver area, she felt called to innovative evangelism. She designed, launched, and currently oversees an active website called http://look4god.com/. Besides teaching, mentoring, counseling, occasionally preaching, and organizing CBE events, she is also pursuing her DMin in executive leadership. When Sue is not envisioning new and innovative ways to reach people with the love of the gospel, she spends time with her family, her wonderful friends, or dreams of horseback riding. She currently resides in Denver with her husband, Dr. Brent Bailey, who is her number one advocate and partner of thirty-three years.


Steve J. Baker

Workshop Title: Pay it Forward: Wise Stewardship, Creative Giving, and Estate Planning

Steve practiced law in Michigan for five and a half years before joining the Barnabas Foundation in 1995. His focus is taxation and benefits law and estate planning. Steve holds a BA from Calvin College in Grand Rapids and a law degree from the University of Detroit Law School, where he was an editor of the University of Detroit Law Review. He serves on the board of the Muskegon Christian School Educational Foundation. Steve works out of the Grand Rapids, MI, office of Barnabas Foundation.


Jeff Miller

Workshop Title: Where Did All These Men Come From? A Defense of Gender-Accurate Bible Translation

Jeff Miller is the editor of CBE's journal, Priscilla Papers. He also teaches biblical studies at Milligan College in eastern Tennessee. Jeff has attended numerous CBE conferences, has published articles in Priscilla Papers and Mutuality, and writes for CBE's blog, Arise