Click below to purchase the digital All-Access pass from Engage 2019

March 2nd 2019

6:30pm

The Community Gathering is included for Engage Conference attendees, but tickets can be purchased separately for those wishing to attend the Community Gathering only by clicking below.

 

ALL-ACCESS PASS

The Engage All-Access Pass includes digital access to all Engage 2019 content for $9.99. Click below to learn more!

CONFERENCE SCHEDULE

8:15 – 8:30 Registration

8:45 – 9:15 Welcome 

9:25 – 10:25 BREAKOUT #1

10:35 – 11:35 BREAKOUT #2

11:45 – 12:45 Lunch, Exhibits & Live Podcast Recording 

12:45 – 1:45 BREAKOUT #3

1:55 – 2:55 BREAKOUT #4

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6:30 – 8:00 Community Gathering

CONFERENCE SPEAKERS

Heather Avis

Heather Avis

Author of The Lucky Few

Bio

Heather Avis is wife to her handsome and hardworking man Josh, and mother to the adorable Macyn, Truly and August and Author of “The Lucky Few” (available everywhere books are sold). After working as an Education Specialist she found herself as a full-time stay at home mom when she and her husband adopted their first daughter, Macyn, in 2008. Shortly thereafter, in 2011, they adopted their second daughter, Truly. And in 2013, their son August was born and came home to be theirs. Heather currently resides in Southern California where between oatmeal making, diaper changing and dance parties she shares her heart by putting words on paper and using her hit Instagram account @macymakesmyday, to share the awesomeness of all things Down syndrome and adoption. She cares fiercely for the underdog and believes God’s goodness and beauty are found in the most seemingly uncomfortable places.
Matt Mooney

Matt Mooney

99 Balloons Co-Founder & Executive Director

Bio

In addition to serving as Executive Director of 99 Balloons, Matt speaks, writes and advocates in areas related to our shared humanity and fragility. He is the author of A Story Unfinished– a book written by Matt about Eliot’s life and the lessons God taught them through their son. His work with 99 Balloons has allowed him to be a proponent of inclusive education as well as church inclusion throughout Haiti, Ukraine, Uganda, India and more.
Jolene Philo

Jolene Philo

Author & Speaker

Bio

Jolene is the author of five books for the special needs community. She is currently collaborating with Dr. Gary Chapman on book about using the 5 love languages in special needs families. She connects with parents of kids with special needs at her blog, DifferentDream.com, and with her daughter co-hosts the Home Again Podcast, which explores intergenerational living. She speaks at about writing, special needs parenting, special needs ministry, and post-traumatic stress disorder around the country and internationally. She and her husband Hiram have two adult children and four grandchildren. They live in Polk City, Iowa, along with their daughter, son-in-law and their two children. Jolene enjoys walking, cooking, reading, and traveling.
Derek Gwinn

Derek Gwinn

Director of Relationship Education at the Center for Healthy Relationships

Bio

Dr. Derek Gwinn is the Director of Relationship Education at the Center for Healthy Relationships on the campus of John Brown University. For 20 years, he has worked with individuals, couples and families as they strive to build healthy, lasting and safe relationships, families and homes. Dr. Gwinn holds a PhD from the University of Minnesota, and is a Certified Family Life Educator through the National Council on Family Relations. He and his wife, and their four children, live in Siloam Springs, Arkansas.
Dr. Ben Rhodes

Dr. Ben Rhodes

Director of Academic Engagement in the Christian Institute on Disability

Bio

Dr. Ben Rhodes is the Director of Academic Engagement in the Christian Institute on Disability at the Joni and Friends International Disability Center. He and his wife Katie enjoy traveling to new places, great books, and good food. Katie works with survivors of human trafficking, and they are both committed to faith-based partnerships with vulnerable populations. Dr. Rhodes holds a PhD in systematic theology from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland and is passionate about the transformational effect of theology in the daily practice of Christian life.

Emeka Nnaka

Emeka Nnaka

Motivational Speaker

Bio

Emeka Nnaka is a professional motivational speaker and leading advocate for individuals with physical challenges. He brings a message of determination, inspiration, and hope to audiences of all ages, young and old.

Rick Smith

Rick Smith

Founder & President of Hope Story

Bio

Rick Smith is the Founder & President ofHope Story, an organization that promotes the beauty and value of all human life by providing hope and encouragement to families whose child has just received a Down syndrome. For over seven years Rick has created awareness about raising a Child with Down syndrome worldwide via his blog and social media channels. Rick’s passionate about helping people use their story to help make a difference in the lives of others. He lives in Dallas, TX with his wife of over a decade, Abbie, and his three children, Noah, Jaxten, and Koen.

Andrea Moriarty

Andrea Moriarty

Author & Speaker

Bio

Andrea Moriarty is the author of One-Track Mind: 15 Ways to Amplify Your Child’s Special Interest and Radical Inclusion: What I Learned About Risk, Humility, and Kindness from My Son with Autism as well as cofounder of Banding Together, a music therapy nonprofit. She speaks nationally and leads workshops where she shares unending hope, affectionate humor, and innovative resources with parents and educators. Moriarty and her husband, Jim, are adoptive parents of grown twins. Allie is a board-certified music therapist and Reid is a singer songwriter, speaker, and host of Talk Time with Reid Moriarty. Moriarty lives in Solana Beach, California, where she accumulates books, cooks from scratch, and whistles while she works.

Reid Moriarty

Reid Moriarty

"Man with a Mic"

Bio

Reid Moriarty is a “man with a mic” motivated to entertain to show that everyone has a unique gift. A charismatic performer on keyboard and vocals, he has recorded three albums–Purple Party, Shine, and Best Bros. Reid is also front man for the band Jungle Poppins, speaks regularly promoting ability awareness and hosts his own podcast, Talk Time with Reid Moriarty. His voice breaks through social barriers to inspire.

Stephen "Doc" Hunsley

Stephen "Doc" Hunsley

SOAR Special Needs Director and Pastor for Grace Church

Bio

Dr. Stephen “Doc” Hunsley is the SOAR Special Needs Director and Pastor for Grace Church in Overland Park and Olathe, Kansas. Doc started Grace Church’s special needs ministry in 2011, helping it to become a hallmark ministry for the church. The SOAR (Special Opportunities, Abilities, and Relationships) special needs ministry serves over 800 individuals with special needs through weekend church programming, family support groups, and regular respite events. SOAR also has adult programming on the weekend, a VBS, and a Special Needs Day Camp in the summer.  Doc founded and leads the Kansas City Special Needs Ministries Network, for area church leaders. He is currently assisting over 225 churches locally and nationally to start a Special Needs Ministry. Doc also organizes the Wonderfully Made Conference every October in Kansas City. Prior to serving as a special needs pastor, Doc was a children’s pastor. Doc is a retired pediatrician while his wife, Kay, continues practicing pediatrics. They are proud parents to three beautiful children: Luke, Mark and Sarah. The Hunsley’s middle child, Mark, is presently running the halls of heaven. During Mark’s five-year earthly stay, he gave his family the opportunity to learn from and love a child with autism. You can follow SOAR on Facebook or Connect with Doc on Twitter: @DocHunsleyVisitGraceChurch.com/SOAR

Sandra Peoples

Sandra Peoples

Author and Executive Director for Key Ministry and Not Alone

Bio

Sandra Peoples, M Div, is the author of Unexpected Blessings: The Joys and Possibilities of Life in a Special-Needs Family. She is a leading voice in the disability community as an encourager to special-needs parents. She has been a member of a special-needs family since the day she was born. Her older sister has Down syndrome, and in 2010 her son James was diagnosed with autism. She is the executive editor for Key Ministry and Not Alone (on Patheos). Sandra, her husband, and their two boys live outside of Houston. Connect with her at sandrapeoples.com

Clayton L. Layson

Clayton L. Layson

Attorney

Bio

Clay Layson is an attorney with RMP LLP, where his practice focuses on Long-TermCare/Medicaid Planning/Asset Protection; Estate Planning; Special Needs Planning; andGuardianship. He previously served as Assistant Director for the Division of Aging and Adult Services at DHS, where he was responsible for the state’s Long-Term Care Medicaid FinancialEligibility program. He also served as a general counsel attorney for DHS, where hisresponsibilities included providing legal opinions related to Medicaid and representing DHS in administrative appeals. He represented DHS in courts across the state, including the Arkansas Court of Appeals. Clay has also worked as a Trust Officer and a Compliance Enforcement Attorney. He earned his J.D. with honors from the UALR Bowen School of Law and holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from the University of Arkansas.

Mindy Duell

Mindy Duell

Autism/Behavior Specialist, BCBA

 

PANEL PARTICIPANTS

ADULTS WITH DISABILITIES:

Keith Vire 

Morgan England

Adam Settle

Ann Marie Barfield

Emeka Nnaka

 

RESPITE ROUND TABLE:

Becca Wall

Joel Dillon

Amber Leonard

Joe Butler

Abby Ann Williams

MOTHERS OF CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES:

Sue Addington

Jen Butler

Sandra Peoples

Andrea Moriarty

Ginny Mooney 

NAVIGATING THE IEP:

Mindy Duell

Michaela Jones

Diane Cooper

COUNTDOWN TO ENGAGE

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SPONSORS

LOCATION 

Fellowship Fayetteville

3447 AR-112

Fayetteville, AR 72704

HOTELS

We have rooms blocked at both TownePlace Suites in Fayetteville/N Springdale and Embassy Suites in Rogers.

These rooms are held through February 15th.

For more information, please email Ben Yates (benyates@99balloons.org)

PROMOTE ENGAGE

If you would like to help promote Engage, click the link below to download our promotional materials.

CONTACT US

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