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Faculty & Speakers

Stay tuned as more speakers are added in the weeks ahead.


Jeff Chu

Journalist and Author

As a writer and editor for Time and Fast Company, Jeff Chu has compiled an award-winning portfolio, including stories on hit-making Swedish songwriters; James Bond; undercover missionaries in the Arab world; and the decline of Christianity in Europe.…

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Roger Ferlo

President, Bexley Seabury Federation

Roger Ferlo is an Episcopal priest, writer, and teacher living in Chicago. He is President of the Bexley Seabury Seminary Federation, where he is also professor of biblical interpretation and the practice of ministry. His book, Sensing God: Reading Scripture…

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Josh Fitzwater

Founder and Chief Visionary Officer, Holden Ellis

As owner and Chief Visionary Officer of Holden Ellis, Fitzwater steers the creative wheel for a digital marketing company focused on immersive and unique creative content for web and social media channels. Prior to founding Holden Ellis, Fitzwater worked…

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Amy Gottlieb

Novelist and Poet

Amy Gottlieb is a novelist and poet. Her debut novel, The Beautiful Possible (Harper Perennial), was a finalist for a National Jewish Book Award and Edward Lewis Wallant Award. Her work has appeared in Lilith, On Being, Forward, Tikkun, Zeek, Storyscape…

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Amy Gutman

Senior Facilitator, The OpEd Project

Amy Gutman's work has appeared in a wide range of print and online publications, including The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Salon, Psychology Today, and the New York Law Journal, and she is the author of two suspense novels—Equivocal Death and The…

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Rodger Kamenetz

Poet, Author, and Teacher

Rodger Kamenetz is an award-winning poet, author, and teacher. Of his 10 books, his best known is The Jew in the Lotus, the story of rabbis making a holy pilgrimage through India to meet with the Dalai Lama. His account of their historic dialogue became…

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Zeba Khan

Senior Facilitator, The OpEd Project

Zeba Khan is a writer and commentator focused on how Islam intersects with race, politics, and identity within the U.S. Her commentary has appeared in numerous outlets, including The Boston Globe, the Washington Post, CNN, Al Jazeera America, and The…

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Beth Kissileff

Writer and Freelance Journalist

Beth Kissileff is the author of the 2016 novel Questioning Return and editor of the anthology Reading Genesis: Beginnings, which asks academics to use their expertise to decode the Biblical text. Her writing has appeared in the Michigan Quarterly Review…

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Sarah Lefton

Executive Director and Producer, BimBam

Sarah Lefton is the founder of G_dcast (now BimBam), a new media studio making videos, apps, and animated series that are joyful and empowering introductions to Jewish life. She began her career in educational digital media at New York University’s Interactive…

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Jonathan Merritt

Writer, Blogger, and News Personality

Jonathan Merritt is an award-winning writer on religion, culture, and politics, currently serving as a contributing writer for The Atlantic and senior columnist for Religion News Service. Merritt has published more than 2,000 articles in outlets such…

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Kyle Matthew Oliver

Episcopal priest and doctor of education student

Kyle Matthew Oliver is an Episcopal priest and doctor of education student in the Communications, Media, and Learning Technologies Design Program at Teachers College, Columbia University. Previously, he was digital missioner and instructor at the Center…

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Stephen S. Pearce

Senior Rabbi Emeritus, Congregation Emanu-El of San Francisco

Rabbi Stephen Pearce is a former Visiting Professor of Jewish Pastoral Care at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, CA, and now teaches at the Fromm Institute on the campus of the University of San Francisco. He is a former editor of the Journal…

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