Presidents Forum on Strategic Issues

Presidents Forum on Strategic Issues
October 26-27, 2017
$399 per person

  • Location: ABHE Weber Center for Leadership Development, Orlando, FL
  • Full two-day program
  • Includes 3 night’s lodging
  • 7 meals, all snacks and beverages
  • Program costs

> Download Program Schedule

The journey of every enduring presidency includes the regular sharpening of skills and expansion of leadership capacity.  Even the sharpest knife made from the best steel grows dull with use. Your self-management includes regular times to sharpen the edge . . . to keep the cutting edge of your leadership sharp and keen.

That’s the passion in our design for these two days – to expand the capacity and sharpen the competency of your gifts and graces for presidential leadership. Take your leadership to the top. Attend the Presidents Forum on Strategic Issues this October 26 – 27.

Six high-capacity distinguished presidents have been carefully chosen to share from their own journey. Learn from these top leaders across ABHE. Their presentations are all followed by times of group discussion and engagement. What a golden opportunity for personal growth and development. This is our best opportunity for enriched peer networking. It would be our delight to welcome you to this exciting gathering.  Consider this lineup.

  • The Spiritual Vitality & Influence of the PresidentDan Anderson, President, Appalachian Bible College, Mount Hope, WV
    Overview: Learn from this 35-year veteran president how to keep the fire in your heart burning and the well-spring of your soul fresh. Your spiritual vitality and influence is too important to run on empty.

    • Spiritual vibrancy – nurturing the soul of the president
    • Spiritual influence – nurturing the soul of the institution
    • Spiritual hydration – protecting your wellspring from drought
    • Spiritual acumen – keeping your flame burning brightly
  • Understanding Faculty/Student Relations & the SOGI Agenda Greg Baylor, Alliance Defending Freedom, Washington, DC
    Overview: Gain invaluable insight from a veteran legal expert about how to best guide your campus through the legal mine field affecting campus life from the SOGI agenda.

    • Likely points of contention; legal precedents & protections
    • Prudent preparation; policy provisions
    • Practical, legal, financial, and spiritual perspectives
  • The Way Forward, Models for Partnerships & Collaboration Peter Teague, President, Lancaster Bible College
    Overview: Take a sober and perceptive look into the future of the Bible college movement. What should you be thinking about new models including partnerships and collaboration?

    • The stark reality of viability challenges facing Bible colleges
    • The risks and rewards of rethinking the structural options
    • How can we position well-run institutions for movement impact
  • A Broader Vision of Bible College Ministry Tracy Davis, President, Olivet University
    Overview: Let your vision be challenged by one of the most progressive institutions in our movement. Consider the breadth and impact of their vision, the blueprint of their strategy and the business model that makes it work.

    • A Bible college vision to serve the whole world
    • Capturing a vision for ministry through all walks of life
    • Following the leading of the Spirit – with courage, boldness and wisdom
    • An entrepreneurial business model to match the vision
  • Essential Elements of an Effective Board – Jim Barnes, President Emeritus, Indiana Wesleyan University, Marion, IN
    Overview: The nature of our institutions does not allow for boards that are asleep at the wheel or negligent in their fiduciary responsibilities. A weak plank in board effectiveness can sink your ship. Learn from a board governance expert what you and your board must know and do.

    • Strong boards & strong institutions; a 1:1 correlation
    • Highly effective boards – a greater than ever need
    • Best practices; practical tips
  • Leading a College Through Growth & Change – Ken Kemper, President, Grace Bible College, Grand Rapids, MI
    Overview: Without change there’s no growth. Real change is hard. Learn from one of our best growing institutions how this happened. Consider the vision, strategic plan and the painful process through change to growth.

    • Owning a strategic vision for growth
    • Addressing the hard issues that prohibit growth
    • Mobilizing the team to grow
    • A planning paradigm that produces results
  • Seizing the Digital Edge Stephen Lennox, President, Kingwood University, Sussex, NB
    Overview: Whether you’re a digital native or wandering in the digital forest, a forward thinking president must successfully navigate the current digital waterfront. Learn from a current pioneer and chart a successful course for your office and institution.

    • The digital communications bandwidth, what’s happening now
    • Weaving options into your internal and external communications strategy
    • Social media and the president’s office
    • Choosing steps you and your institution can take now
  • Take Away Action Plan – David Medders, Executive Vice President, ABHE

    • Naming the “ends” you will achieve this year
    • Clarifying the right next steps – 1st things 1st
    • Prioritizing actions – what actions with whom
    • Confirming the process – action schedule

    Join with other leading presidents, expand your own professional network, sharpen your professional competency and expand your leadership capacity.

    Special invitation: Spouses are warmly welcome!  Connect with other presidential spouses. Join us for this special event for an additional registration fee of $100.

Dan Anderson

anderson-dan80x80Dr. Daniel Anderson began his service at Appalachian Bible College in 1978. Upon his inauguration in 1983, he became the second president of the College since its founding in 1950.  For 18 years Dr. Anderson served the Association of Biblical Higher Education in various capacities, including a term as Board Chair. During his presidency, Appalachian Bible College has undertaken a major campus development plan, building a gymnasium/conference center, a 26-unit married student housing complex, a guest lodge, a chapel/music hall, a residence hall, a maintenance facility, and The Servant Center, a facility providing a dining hall and student center amenities. The renovations of Pipkin Hall including the expansion of the John Van Puffelen Library and Administrative Offices were completed in October 2006 with a rededication of this historic facility. The completion of the campus development plan was achieved on September 29, 2009.  In 2013, Dr. Anderson authored a book drawing upon his study of Jesus’ own leadership style. Biblical Slave Leadership explores the high and holy calling of the servant of God. The passion of Dr. Anderson’s life and ministry has centered upon nurturing servants for the fields of the world. The motto of ABC,Because Life is for Service, captures his heart.

Jim Barnes

Barnes-Jim-80x80Jim Barnes served as President of Indiana Wesleyan University for 19 years and on the faculty of four CCCU institutions. During his tenure of entrepreneurial spirit and transformational leadership, IWU’s total enrollment grew from 1,700 to 13,000 with campus-based enrollment increasing from 1,000 to 3,330; the building of an entirely new $250million debt free campus; conducting two successful, high-goal capital campaigns; and growing the overall annual budget from $6 million to $135million. In addition, Jim initiated seven online degree programs,enrolling over 2,300 students, launched the University’s first doctoral program, and increased adult and professional studies enrollment from750 to nearly 10,000, becoming one of the national leaders in adult education and online programs. He currently serves as a Senior Consultant with RPA Inc., a higher education executive recruitment/consulting firm, and he has conducted over 23 successful vice presidential & presidential searches. Jim is a Senior Fellow of ABHE and serves as an ABHE Executive Coach for presidents.

Greg Baylor

Gregory S. Baylor, Esq.,  serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, where he is the director of the Religious Schools Team. He litigates cases to protect the rights of Christian educational institutions across the nation.
Since joining ADF in 2009, Baylor has focused his litigation efforts on protecting the religious freedom of Christ-centered educational institutions. He serves as religious liberty consultant to the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities. He also works to protect the First Amendment freedoms of students, faculty, and staff at public colleges and universities.
Greg earned his J.D. in 1990 at Duke University School of Law, where he graduated with high honors. He is admitted to the state bar of Texas, the U.S. Supreme Court, and numerous federal appeals and district courts.

Tracy Davis


Ken Kemper

Kemper-Ken80x80Ken is the President of Grace Bible College in Grand Rapids, Michigan since 2003. He has a passion for courageously serving the Lord and has been given many great opportunities around the world to be “in the trenches” in full-time ministry roles. He, along with his wife, Kathy, and three children served 16 years in Tanzania, East Africa. In Africa they did evangelism and church planting as well as developing spiritual leadership. Teaching by action and service learning leading to transformation are important to Ken’s philosophy of ministry and education. Ken is an able communicator of God’s Word who speaks in churches, at mission conferences and banquets.

Stephen Lennox

Dr. Stephen J. Lennox became Kingswood’s 12th president on July 1, 2015. Dr. Lennox, an ordained minister of The Wesleyan Church, served ten years in pastoral ministry. For twenty-two years, he served with distinction at Indiana Wesleyan University in several roles, including Division Chair of the School of Theology and Ministry, Director of the graduate ministry program, Dean of the Chapel, and Honors Professor of Bible and Humanities. The recognized scholar holds four degrees: the Ph.D. and M.Phil. from Drew University, the M. Div. from Evangelical Theological Seminary, and a Bachelor of Arts from Houghton College.
A Christian statesman and prolific writer, Dr. Lennox has authored six books on the Old Testament including commentaries on Psalms, Proverbs, and Joshua, as well as an introduction to the Old Testament, God’s Story Revealed. He and his wife, Eileen, have two children and two grandchildren.

Peter Teague

Peter Teague has served as President of Lancaster Bible College since July 1, 1999. His presidency continues a 40-year ministry career devoted to Christian education and leadership development. Dr. Teague earned his B.S. in Business Administration and Psychology from Sterling College, a M.A. in Christian Education from Luther Rice Seminary, and D.Ed from Nova Southeastern University. Dr. Teague has been a contributing editor and co-author for several books and publications and has served on the directing boards of a variety of Christian and secular organizations. He is co-founder and president of Jessica and Friends Community, a faith-based organization offering services and support to individuals with autism and intellectual disabilities. He and his wife, Paulette, reside in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and have four children and eight grandchildren.

SpringHill Suites by Marriott – Orlando Airport
5828 Hazeltine National Drive
Orlando, FL 32822
(407) 816-5533
SpringHill Suites Orlando Airport is an all-suite hotel offering you first class service, located minutes away from the Orlando International Airport (MCO), and features amenities, including free Internet access and on-site dining. The ABHE staff will make your hotel reservations for you.  Please indicate your room type/preference when you register for the conference.

Complimentary shuttle service is available from the Orlando International Airport (MCO) to the SpringHill Suites. To request the complimentary shuttle from the Orlando International Airport (MCO) to the SpringHill Suites:

  • Call the hotel for shuttle pickup – 407-816-5533
  • Take airport elevator to level 1 – ground transportation
  • Go through the sliding doors
  • Stand at either A4 (A Side) or B4 (B Side) for pickup


Conference Staff

David Medders

Executive Vice President

Carol Dibble
Director of Communications & Events

Stacey Greene

Communications & Events Assistant

Frequently Asked Questions

Is lodging included in the registration fee?
YES, 3 nights, including arrival the evening before the conference begins.
Are meals included in the registration fee?
YES, including 7 meals and all snacks/beverages.
Can my spouse participate in some or all of the conference?
Participation in the conference by spouses requires their own separate registration.  The spouse registration fee is $100, which includes program, meals and refreshments.  If a spouse does not attend the conference, they may join in the evening meals for $25 per meal paid in advance through your registration.
Are scholarships available?
YES, limited scholarships are available.  Please email your request to with an explanation of your financial need.
Is airport shuttle service available?

YES! Complimentary shuttle service is available from the Orlando International Airport (MCO) to the SpringHill Suites. To request the complimentary shuttle from the Orlando International Airport (MCO) to the SpringHill Suites:

  • Call the hotel for shuttle pickup – 407-816-5533
  • Take airport elevator to level 1 – ground transportation
  • Go through the sliding doors
  • Stand at either A4 (A Side) or B4 (B Side) for pickup
Where is the hotel located in relation to the ABHE Conference Center?
The ABHE Weber Center is located in the Citadel I Building, less than a mile away from the Orlando International Airport and a short walk from the SpringHill Suites by Marriott. Complimentary shuttle service is available from the hotel to the conference center.
How do I CANCEL a person on my registration?
You may log back into your registration form at any time with your confirmation number to make any cancellations, etc.
What is your Cancellation Policy?
In the event of registration cancellation, fees paid in advance are refundable – less a $50.00 service charge per person, provided written notice is received by ABHE no later than three weeks prior to the event. No refunds will be granted after that date. E-mail notification will suffice. Please e-mail to request a refund. There are no refunds provided for no-shows.