Alexia Salvatierra, founder of Faith-Rooted Organizing Network and author with Dr. Peter Heltzel of “Faith-Rooted Organizing: Mobilizing the Church in Service to the World” (Intervarsity Press) and the founder of the Faith-Rooted Organizing UnNetwork.. She is a Lutheran Pastor with over 35 years of experience in community ministry, including church-based service and community development programs, congregational and community organizing, and legislative advocacy.
Lisa Sharon Harper, Chief Church Engagement Officer and former founding executive director of New York Faith & Justice—an organization at the hub of a new ecumenical movement to end poverty in New York City. She has written extensively on tax reform, comprehensive immigration reform, health-care reform, poverty, racial justice, and transformational civic engagement for publications and blogs including The National Civic Review, God’s Politics blog, The Huffington Post, Urban Faith, Prism, and Slant33. Her faith-rooted approach to advocacy and organizing has activated people across the U.S. and around the world to address structural and political injustice as an outward demonstration of their personal faith.
Rev. Peter Goodwin Heltzel, Ph.D., an ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), is the Director of the Micah Institute and Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at New York Theological Seminary. He also serves as Assistant Pastor of Evangelism at Park Avenue Christian Church in New York City. Rev. Heltzel holds a B.A. from Wheaton College, a M.Div. from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and earned his Ph.D. from Boston University. He also completed course work at the University of Mississippi in Southern fiction and creative writing. These courses, combined with his childhood years in Mississippi, inform his work with a deep commitment to the power of words and music, to social justice and to a global movement of radical change and collective activism.
Rev. Martin Garcia, Engagement Officer and Hispanic Ministries Coordinator, Southern California, US Programs, World Vision, former director of Vision LA (one of the most successful efforts ever to organize Hispanic storefront congregations)
Rev. Michael Mata, has over 30 years of creating community and church-based programs for community transformation and youth leadership development, currently serving as community transformation specialist for Compassion Creates Change Inc. and Director of LA Program in Transformational Urban Leadership at Azusa Pacific Seminary, former Director of Tools for Transformation, World Vision US Programs.
Michelle Warren is the Advocacy and Policy Engagement Director for the Christian Community Development Association. She has been working in Christian community development for 22 years utilizing her skills as an educator, non-profit manager and public policy specialist. Michelle earned her Bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Cedarville University and later earned her Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Colorado. She is an immigration, education and human service policy specialist. Michelle is an adjunct faculty member at Denver Seminary in their Justice and Mission’s program, teaching, “Political Advocacy: Doing Justice in the Public Square.” Michelle is a part of the national Evangelical Immigration Table and helps consult for the National Immigration Forum, a non-partisan, DC based immigration advocacy organization as the, Mountain West Regional Consultant for their Bibles, Badges & Business campaign. Michelle’s advocacy reach has been featured in local markets like: The Denver Post and Colorado Public Radio as well as national Christian and secular media outlets including: The L.A. Times, PBS News Hour, Christianity Today, CBN, Christian WORLD magazine and numerous others. She is married to David Warren, Executive Director of Open Door Ministries. They live in Denver with their three children, 19,17 and 13.
Juan Carlos Ruiz, Co-Founder New Sanctuary Movement, Director, Occupy Sandy Relief Program at St. Jacobi’s Lutheran Church, Brooklyn
Rich Kohng, Outreach Ministries Coordinator, Northpark University, Chicago, co-Pastor, The 9th Hour
Yu- Shuan Tarango-Sho, Director of the Jesus, Justice and Poverty Institute (formerly the Bay Area Urban Project) Intervarsity Christian Fellowship