2017 ESR Leadership Conference

Entrepreneurial Organizations: 
Creating Communities that Lead with Spirit & Serve with Purpose

August 11-13, 2017
Featuring Keynote Speakers Diane Randall & Alan Price



The compelling urge to create new venues for service and ministry rises from deep within. A call beckons with an invitation to consider something new—a different path, a fresh venture, a new vocation. With courage the entrepreneur moves forward into a mysterious unknown with as many questions as answers, but with a certainty that the risk is worth taking.

Being true to one’s values while pursuing one’s passion satisfies the way little else can, but the way forward is not without surprises. Entrepreneurs sometimes discover that fully invested hearts did not imagine the cost of working alone! They often speak of a sense of isolation and a wish for peers, or at least conversation partners. Implementation of the vision may prove more complex than anticipated, creating a need for other expertise or additional resources.

The successful entrepreneur will soon discover that more than one individual’s energy is needed to realize the full potential held within their vision. Innovation may face initial resistance, but will likely attract other interested parties who want to lend a hand, a voice, or more, to the effort. How does one move from a one person initiative to a group project, or to an actual organization with directors and by laws? Can a leader radically reorient an existing organization deeply entrenched in its tradition but in need of new life?

The truth is we need one another. We need networks for encouragement, for sounding boards, and for expanding our ideas. We benefit from support and accountability. Creativity and innovation can be fueled when the right partners accompany us in the process. From networks and conversations such as these, organizational structures are often born as an extension of the entrepreneur’s dream.

How do we find the connections we need? How do we invite others to participate without risking the loss of our venture? How do we form groups and organizations that embody the values most central to our work? Can we revive existing organizations that have settled into self-preserving routines that dilute mission or whose mission needs revision? Questions such as these will be at the center of our conversations at this year’s leadership conference.

This conference is designed especially for...

  • Entrepreneurs
  • Intrapreneurs
  • Ministers, especially non-traditional ones
  • Business Professionals
  • Students
  • Life-long learners and kindred spirits


  • Find affirmation for your calling
  • Build supportive relationships
  • Experience fresh energy and new resolve
  • Learn practical ideas to benefit your work
  • Contribute to a body of shared knowledge


  • Hear teaching that stirs the mind and resonates with the soul
  • Participate in rich workshops led by skilled presenters
  • Engage in small group conversations with interested peers


Plenary Presentations

Quaker Practice for Entrepreneurs - Diane Randall

Friends’ faith and practice offers ways of being entrepreneurial in the world.  When an idea ignites, it can be difficult to rest in contemplation and discernment when we want to move to action. Knowing when to move forward, when to abide in expectant waiting, and how to cultivate companions along the way all have a huge impact on whether our entrepreneurial ideas ignite into fires, continue as simmering flames or are extinguished.  

As a leader who has worked in small to medium non-profits, Diane will speak about how being a Quaker has helped her cultivate and nurture entrepreneurial leadership within an organization and outside an organization. Using her own story of leading FCNL, she will offer ideas on how we sustain our sense of calling and community in a challenging environment.

Diane Randall is Executive Secretary of the Friends Committee on National Legislation. A lifelong advocate for peace and social justice, Diane is a fierce proponent for citizen engagement to advance policies to create a better society for all.

Diane came to FCNL in 2011 as the fourth Executive Secretary. Diane has led FCNL’s program expansion, including adding lobbyists and new programs to engage grassroots citizens, young adults and more Quakers to lobby for peace, justice and a sustainable planet. Before coming to FCNL, Diane was a public school teacher before she began working for non-profits in leadership roles.  Diane is a member of Hartford Monthly Meeting, although she now worships with Langley Hill Friends in the Washington, DC area when she is not traveling. She served on the Board of Advisors of the Earlham School of Religion from 2003-2012.  She is married to Roger Catlin and is the mother of three adult children.

What Kind of Leader Am I? What Kind of Leadership Is Needed? Now What? - Alan Price

The terms “leader” and “leadership” mean different things to different people. What do they mean to you? Do you think of yourself as a leader? If you asked an employee to demonstrate leadership, could you predict what they might do? Would they just give you a puzzled look and wonder what you were really asking?

Popular notions of leadership often contain dated, faulty, or ill-fitting assumptions that can derail our effectiveness. Every time we change roles or see a change in the competitive landscape, it is important to reflect on whether a different type of leadership is needed for success. In this session we will discuss our real life challenges and use them as catalysts for increasing awareness of our individual leadership styles. After creating personal definitions of leadership that capture your imagination, we’ll develop leadership action plans that increase clarity, focus, and energy that will help you navigate difficult situations.

President of Earlham College and the Earlham School of Religion, Alan Price has a long history of public service, serving in the U.S. Army National Guard from 1983-89 and on the Cambridge (Mass.) Police Review and Advisory Board from 1996-2002, in addition to leadership roles at the Peace Corps and the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, to which he was appointed by President Barack Obama. He is the author of Ready to Lead? A Story for Leaders and Their Mentors (Jossey-Bass, 2004). Alan majored in economics at Earlham (’88) and earned his J.D. at Harvard Law School in 1992.


Panel Discussion

Undergrad Entrepreneurs for Peace and Justice

Welling Hall - Panel Moderator

Welling Hall has worked as Plowshares Professor of Peace Studies, Politics, and International Studies at Earlham since 1987 and has recently joined Earlham President Alan Price's team as Academic Dean of the College. In addition to serving in various leadership roles with the Friends Committee on National Legislation and the Quaker United Nations Office, Welling has worked for the U.S. Congress as Legislative Assistant to Congressman Keith Ellison and for the U.S. Department of State as a Franklin Fellow.

Ahsan Khoja is a rising junior, majoring in Mathematics and Computer Science at Earlham College. He is an Ismaili Muslim by faith, from Karachi, Pakistan. With a deep-rooted passion for social good, he has found great opportunities and mentorship here to follow his goals. Over the past year, he has worked with a team of 12 other Earlham students in designing a campaign to combat violent extremism. Their campaign was selected among the top 3 in the U.S. as scalable campaigns. There were brought to Washington D.C. to present their idea where they also participated in Design Sprint, a process of structured brainstorming for answering critical business questions through design, prototyping, and testing new ideas with users throughout one to five day workshop.

Daniel Kibet is an Earlham College student going into his third year. He plans to double major in Economics and Business & Non-profit management and specialize in a career field in the economic development and banking/finance sector.

Daniel is from Eldoret town, western Kenya where he completed his high school education at St Patricks High School, Iten. In 2013, he attended Lester B. Pearson UWC college in British Columbia, Canada where he completed the International Baccalureate diploma program.

Daniel has volunteered with an organization in central Kenya where he got involved in the construction of class rooms for a nursery school, a pit latrine project, and a water tank for an orphanage facility in Muranga. This summer he will be able to work with his local community to establish toilet facilities for the school he attended as a young boy.

Abby McCullough is a 2017 graduate of Earlham College. She completed her B.A. in Art as well as a minor in Environmental Studies. The summer before her senior year Abby and her friend Lily Fishleder combined their love for art, architecture, sustainability and community through a hands on project of building a tiny house to live in for their senior year of college. With a love for the environment, this project allowed these friends to begin to live into their values and embrace the idea of living simply. 

Ananda Mishra is a young inspiring individual from Nepal who wants to imprint his name in the world’s medical fraternity. He is a rising senior pursuing a Biochemistry degree at Earlham College studying in the pre-health program. Ananda co-convenes the Health Club at Earlham and plans the programs and progress of this committee. He aspires to become a cardiovascular surgeon and serve humankind. He has been volunteering and job-shadowing at Reid Hospital for the past two years, works as a circulation desk worker at Lilly Library, and tutors Biology and chemistry at the Academic Enrichment Center.



How Can Social Media Help My Ministry? with Jon Watts

We have all heard the miracle stories of social media. The surprise video that gets more than a billion views. The Facebook rant that goes viral and launches a career. The creative twitter account that ends up featured in the mainstream media.

It is easy to look at all those success stories and feel excited by the possibilities. “If only my ministry could get a fraction of that attention!” But the opportunity can easily become pressure (What platforms should I join? Am I missing out if I am not on Twitter?), and that pressure can become overwhelming, consuming the faithful execution of our ministries.

In this workshop, we will have a chance to sort through our feelings about social media and get our questions answered. We’ll talk about how to design, build, and maintain an effective social media presence while maintaining balance so that social media does not take over our lives. We will discuss the 3 pillars of a successful social media strategy: research, regularity, and vulnerability. You will come away with a plan for getting started with bringing your ministry onto the most appropriate social media platform in the most effective way possible.

Jon Watts is the founder and director of the award-winning QuakerSpeak project. A project of the Philadelphia-based Friends Journal, QuakerSpeak recently passed a million views on YouTube and has amassed over 15,000 followers on a variety of social media platforms. For 10 years Jon has been a student of social media strategy, which he has successfully adapted for his ministries as a Quaker musician, blogger, and now as a video creator. Jon believes in the power of the internet as a tool for ministry, and that bringing your ministry online must be approached with care and discernment.

Character Based Organizations with Alan Kolp

This workshop shows how to embed classical virtues (values) in a group or organization. The values become the fabric of a healthy culture. Typically, the culture is more important than the strategy for successful innovators. Culture is a leading indicator of an innovative group or organization. The virtues also are the basis for high performing teams that are supported by a healthy culture. This is especially true within our VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) world. Because of VUCA, culture and high performing teams are more important than the idea itself.  

Alan Kolp currently holds the Baldwin Wallace University Chair in Faith & Life and is Professor of Religion. Previously, he was the Pastoral Leader at First Friends Meeting in Richmond, IN and was a faculty member and Dean of ESR. In addition to teaching spirituality, he works globally with a business colleague, with whom he has authored three books. He also works closely with athletics at the university.

Creative Tension: Social Entrepreneurship at the Intersection of Piety and the Public with Jaimie Mudd

The call to public ministry is at once mysterious and pragmatic. As John Grisholm noted, “we walk in the midst of a reality that includes ourselves and is greater than ourselves.” We know a desire to be faithful in our chosen ministry and we know that this requires resources and support.

If your call is to be the change you wish to see in the world, to make change happen in society, then this workshop will be beneficial for you. We will help you clarify the distinctions between entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship. Both forms can bring life giving results through ministry. We will share stories of and lessons learned from the evolution of a variety of entrepreneurial ministries through the lens of a new Food Security Cooperative in Richmond, Indiana.

The creative tension we manage involves learning business planning while remaining faithful to the call for community justice. This workshop is suited for both intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs and will enable you to learn the steps of developing a ministry through social enterprise. We will map our journey of personal spiritual practices and social gospel inspiration that is food for the soul and sustains us in our work.

Jaimie Mudd is a member of Pima Monthly Meeting in Tucson, Arizona.  She leads retreats for Meetings and churches and has a creative ministry in the public sphere. She provides leadership and life transformation coaching and organization design consulting. A frequent speaker and facilitator at conferences and workshops, Jaimie ensures generative creativity in her organizational transformation work.

Jaimie is an M.Div. candidate at the Earlham School of Religion. She holds a Bachelor of Science and an M.A. in Counseling Psychology. She has certifications in evidence based coaching, community mediation and conflict transformation, participatory strategic planning, as well as Courage and Renewal Retreat facilitation.

I Do Not Want to Do This Anymore. Now What? with Adriana Cabrera-Velásquez

How do we pay attention to those spiritual gifts we know we possess but have neglected for years in lieu of a steady income, urge to make the world a better place, or prestige? This workshop explores times when we have felt moved to let go of the comfort of having it all, to embark on the journey of having nothing. The space will begin with the workshop leader´s sharing of personal experience, will continue with mutual sharing on the part of the participants, and will end with a gathering of learnings based on our own story telling.

Colombian, Quaker, ESR M.Div. graduate, B.A. in Literary Studies, community organizer and peace & justice worker, Adriana Cabrera-Velásquez has a long curriculum of experience working in Quaker education and international accompaniment organizations such as Olney Friends School, Beacon Hill Friends House, and Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT). After almost five years as Personnel Coordinator of CPT, Adriana let go of her intense travel schedule and huge global responsibilities to settle at home in Paipa, Colombia, focusing her efforts locally. Adriana has been a regular writer for Quaker Life Magazine and The Signs of Times, and has made contributions to digital publications such as Kairos Canada. She currently gathers all her experience and academic background in literary translation of Human Rights articles, personal reflections, and Christian devotional texts. At present she also dedicates time to her writing through her cycling blog Palabras Bielas and a collaborative Facebook memoir project called La Jirafa y la Bicicleta.

Imagine Business as a Calling with Pete Sebert

Learn a process of examining the spiritual basis of business found in policies and practices manuals. Where are the hints of spirituality? Consider ways to maintain core values listed in most company and professional ethical statements. Sebert shares a retreat format for business leaders given for Kentucky Bankers Association: they thought about banking as a calling to ministry and what they would change in order for banking to be a ministry. Consider these questions: What is the bottom line to an Intrapreneur? What do the rock band Journey and Elton Trueblood have in common? Can you name a couple of business people you would ordain as already a minister? If you ran a business, how would you do it differently? Then, rediscover the way the Friedrichs operate Just Train Fun, giving positively outrageous service.

Pete Sebert was schooled and worked in the Midwest (ESR ‘73 Master of Ministry), and is now in Austin, Texas. He served churches for 20 years and directed a Yokefellow Center from 1972-76. Appointed interim executive director of Brown County, Indiana Chamber of Commerce, Innkeeper, and for the last twenty years, plays a professional storyteller. Founded Kitchen Table University which offers Family Times Programs for churches and schools where he creates family times in classes & retreats by recalling the stories and songs that shape our lives. Story serves as the infrastructure of our families, marriages, work and country.

Optimizing Your For-Profit and Not-For-Profit Ideas through the Use of the Business Model Canvas with Gene Hambrick

"Small opportunities are the beginning of great enterprises."  Demosthenes 343 B.C.

"Everyone who's ever taken a shower has an idea.  It is the person who gets out of the shower, dries off and does something about it that makes a difference."  Nolan Bushness, Founder of Atari, Chuck E. Cheeses

The purpose of this workshop is to provide you with concepts and a tool that can help you transform your for-profit or not-for-profit ideas into a manageable plan. The use of the business model canvas is a systematic process step between the idea stage to the business plan.

The workshop will:

* Explain the business model canvas concept
* Discuss key terms and the vocabulary
* Provide an opportunity for you to do a "hands-on" activity utilizing your own idea

Gene Hambrick is a businessman (Fortune 500 and entrepreneur), consultant, educator, fundraiser, volunteer, and world traveler with 40+ years of experience in both the for-profit and not-for-profit segments. Experience in the United States, Asia, and Latin America; including living and working in Mexico for three years. He is currently Director-Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and Executive in Residence at Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana. Volunteer work with Amgios (Richmond, Indiana), the Centerville-Washington Foundation (Centerville, Ohio). He has a MBA from the University of Virginia (Darden School of Business Administration), B.A (Sociology) from Earlham College, Certificate in Fundraising Management from the Center for Philanthropy, Indiana University, Certified Life Coach from the International Coaching Science Research Foundation. He is an avid tennis player and married to his college sweetheart.

Developing a Network of Support with Simon Thiongo

Ministry is seldom done in isolation. Advisors, prayer partners, and financial donors are just a few of the roles individuals fill in the important networks needed to support new ministries. Using examples from his current ministry, Family Empowerment Ministries, Thiongo will help workshop participants consider steps and develop strategies that can help entrepreneurs cultivate needed networks of support without being a burden. He shall also unwrap the following questions:  How does one build relationships? How do we engage people in our conversation without intruding on their conversation? How to avail oneself, plus factors to consider when looking for a good partnership. He also will discuss the dos and don’ts when seeking support.

Guidelines on how to develop a network of support will include:

1. Having a clear mission and vision
2. Being specific about what you need
3. Being bold about reaching out: being serious and passionate about your idea
4. Hosting social events: Ask people to bring new people
5. Give more than you ask: Focus on what you have to offer, not what you have to gain, volunteer, pay for a drink.
6. Make time for old friends; grab a drink with old friends once a while
7. Follow up with contacts; relationships take time and energy
8. Find allies who will champion networking with you

Rev. Simon Kingori Thiongo is a graduate of Moffat Bible College, Kenya (Dip. Th,), Kuyper College, USA (B.S.), Earlham School of Religion, USA (M.Div.), and is a D.Min. candidate at Asbury Theological Seminary, USA. He has served as a deacon, rector, adjunct lecturer, and HIV/AIDS facilitator in different forums. He has been the keynote speaker at many conferences and has written numerous articles. He published a memoir, “An Amazing Journey of Survival,” which has impacted many lives. Simon is a passionate preacher and motivational speaker in both Kenya and the U.S. He and his wife Julia are blessed with two beautiful daughters, Mercy and Faith. Rev Simon is the founder of Family Empowerment Ministries, Kenya, which is registered in the U.S. as a non- profit organization.

$10,000 Creative Cash Infusion for Artists, Writers, Musicians, Ministers, Creative Professionals/Entrepreneurs & Organizations with Patricia Morrison

Develop a short-term (0-4 month) income-generation plan for an additional $10,000 you can use to fund your creative work, your ministry, or your life. We identify one program/product/avenue through which you could create this additional short-term income and plan how to go about doing it as well as identifying and bypassing your obstacles. This process breaks open the box of thinking about how you offer your gifts to the world and allows for experimentation, creativity, and valuing the work newly.

Patricia Morrison is the founder of Inner Fire, Outer Light, which helps overwhelmed and under-valued creatives to make a living, make a life and make a difference in the world with their gifts. These are artists, writers, musicians and creative professionals who are tired of trading their life goals for their creative ones and looking successful from the outside, but not feeling that way inside. Working with Patricia, they transform their scattered and unfulfilling work lives, and create integrated lives in which their gifts are rewarded with sustainable income, their visions are valued, while becoming the forces of good in the world they seek to be. Patricia is trained in visual art, writing, music, education and business coaching and toured nationally as a contemporary folk singer/songwriter. She has been a Quaker for many years, currently serving as the clerk of her meeting, South Mountain Friends Meeting (NPYM). Learn more at www.InnerFireOuterLight.com.

Game Storms and Team Building with Anthony Noble

This interactive workshop will introduce the use of games to produce serious collaboration building results. We will use emotion to temper logic, and we will use logic to temper emotion. You will have the opportunity to strengthen skills of listening and expression while becoming transformative catalysts for larger groups.

Anthony will teach his own synthesis of Nonviolent Communication and graphic facilitation to reframe new possibilities of collaboration. Participants will have the opportunity to express their real lives and dreams, tempered yet empowered, through design that includes other's dreams and realities. Anthony will introduce the activity using food and gardening as a metaphor in our collaborative design process, and participants will use graphics and verbal interaction to empathize and listen deeply to each other and to imagine spaces that will bring us sustenance.

Anthony Noble has lived and worked on the edges of many cultures throughout life. His parents are from eastern Indiana and Jamaica and are of African and European ancestry. Tony was educated through Catholic schooling and Quaker spirituality. He has worked as an urban planner/designer, permaculture designer, facilitator, county court mediator, chef, gardener, and landscaper. He has a Masters of Urban and Regional Planning from Ball State University and a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University. He also runs “The Noble Spice,” a small business, selling hand crafted foods primarily at the Richmond Farmers Market.

Conference Schedule

Friday, August 11

5:00 pm


5:30 pm


7:00 pm

Panel Discussion - Undergrad Entrepreneurs for Peace and Justice

8:00 pm

Anchor Groups

Saturday, August 12

8:00 am


8:30 am


9:15 am

Plenary Session: Quaker Practice for Entrepreneurs - Diane Randall

10:30 am

Anchor Groups

11:30 am

Group Conversation

12:00 pm


1:15 pm

Workshop #1: Kolp, Mudd, Cabrera-Velásquez, Watts, Sebert

2:45 pm


3:30 pm

Workshop #2: Hambrick, Thiongo, Morrison, Noble

5:15 pm


7:00 pm

Entrepreneurial Open Mic

Sunday, August 13

8:00 am


8:30 am


9:30 am

Plenary Session: What Kind of Leader Am I? What Kind of Leadership Is Needed? Now What? Alan Price

10:30 am

Anchor Groups

11:30 am

Closing Exercise

12:00 noon