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Leadership Summit 15 | SESSIONS & SPEAKERS
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ECPA Leadership Summit
MAY 5-6, 2015
Embassy Suites, Murfreesboro TN

(subject to change)


 Tues., 8:15 am


 Tues., 8:45 am

At more than 78 million strong, the millennials—those born between 1980 and 2000—have surpassed the boomers as the larger and more influential generation in America. This generation has reached adulthood and having a major impact in the workplace and in churches. Dr. Thom Rainer, President/CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources, presented the first major investigative work on millennials from a Christian worldview perspective in the book The Millennials coauthored with his millennial son, Jess Rainer. Dr. Rainer is a prolific author of over twenty books including #1 bestseller I Am A Church Member, Simple Church, Autopsy of a Deceased Church, and his latest book, I Will, releasing in July. He is also a lead blogger with over 6 million page views per year. His podcast, Rainer on Leadership, is consistently ranked high in iTunes. Thom serves as president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources, a 5,000 employee organization headquartered in Nashville. He is a graduate of the University of Alabama where he received his degree in business administration. He received both the master of divinity and the Ph.D. degrees from Southern Seminary. Dr. Rainer has served as pastor of four churches. He is also the former president of Rainer Group consulting. He served for twelve years as dean at Southern Seminary. Dr. Rainer has authored or co-authored 25 books.


For centuries, doctors used to conduct medieval practices on patients that did more harm than good. Fortunately, modern science developed and reshaped how the medical industry saves lives. In today’s economy, the process of marketing is still far from modern. Too many marketers and businesses continue to make decisions based on outdated theories, untested assumptions, and opinions touted on social media. Fortunately, new marketing research is revealing hard evidence about the way brands actually grow. Rob Eagar, president of WildFire Marketing, will discuss these scientific findings and explain how they apply to marketing books and brands.  Rob is the founder of WildFire Marketing, a consulting practice that helps authors, publishers, and non-profit organizations increase revenue and spread their message like wildfire. Rob is one of the rare consultants who has helped clients achieve three different types of New York Times bestsellers, including frontlist non-fiction, frontlist fiction, and backlist non-fiction. He has consulted with numerous publishers and worked with over 400 authors and well-known brands, including Dr. Gary Chapman, Lysa TerKeurst, Wanda Brunstetter, Dr. Henry Cloud, and Dr. John Townsend. For more information, visit:

 Tues., 11:00 amBrian Flagler
Allison Bach

BRIAN FLAGLER & ALLISON BACH: Lessons from the Family Christian Bankruptcy - Steps for Publishers to Protect Inventory and A/R

The Family Christian bankruptcy filing in February was a significant wake-up call for many publishers, both with regard to the state of Christian retail and the impact of bankruptcy on inventory and accounts receivable. But these risks for publishers are not limited to Family, or even to selling through retailers or distributors. Publishers face similar risks when they outsource warehousing, fulfillment, and/or collections to a third party. The good news: publishers can take proactive, inexpensive steps to protect their inventory and A/R from creditors of many of these parties. This session will provide a brief update on the Family Christian bankruptcy proceedings, a forecast of potential outcomes, and a practical discussion regarding the steps publishers can take to protect their assets in these scenarios.

Allison Bach is a member in Dickinson Wright’s Detroit office. Allison’s practice includes advising and representing creditors in out-of-court workouts and restructurings, bankruptcy proceedings and enforcement litigation. Allison recently represented the State of Michigan during the historic City of Detroit bankruptcy case, including being part of the team that negotiated and drafted the "Grand Bargain” that was instrumental in Detroit’s restructuring and continues to advise the Detroit Financial Review Commission post-bankruptcy. Allison is on the board of the International Women's Insolvency & Restructuring Confederation, Michigan Chapter and is a member of the State Bar of Michigan, American Bankruptcy Institute, and Turnaround Management Association. Allison holds a B.A. (with Distinction) from the University of Michigan, an M.S. in Urban Affairs from Cleveland State University’s Levin College of Urban Affairs and a J.D. (magna cum laude, Order of the Coif ) from Wayne State University Law School. On a personal note, Allison grew up as a preacher’s kid in various churches in New York and Ohio. Her father is now a retired Presbyterian minister but her mother is still a church organist and bell choir director. She has been known to be a "ringer” for her mother’s bell choir when needed. Prior to attending law school, Allison worked for 4 years at the United Way in Detroit on various community development initiatives.

Brian Flagler founded Flagler Law Group in the spring of 2006 to serve the legal needs of publishers and distributors of Christian media. Before founding the firm, Brian served as vice president of administration & general counsel of Multnomah Publishers. Previously, Brian practiced intellectual property law with Davis Wright Tremaine LLP and Troutman Sanders LLP and served as adjunct instructor of IP law at Clayton College & State University. He holds a law degree from the University of Virginia. Brian and his wife Amy have three boys and enjoy hiking the mountain trails and paddling the many rivers and lakes surrounding Asheville, North Carolina.

 Tues., 1:30 pmMurray Izenwasser

MURRAY IZENWASSER: 30 Ideas in 60 Minutes To Get Your D2C Program Started

In today’s modern publishing world, most publishers have accepted the fact that creating a Direct-To-Consumer marketing program is a must to ensure future success, and even organizational survival. While many publishers have implemented some steps to creating such a program, very often it is viewed as a daunting task, especially for smaller, independent publishers. There is so much to do, that even understanding where to get started is an unknown. In this presentation, we will go through 30 tips in 60 minutes (leaving plenty of time for questions) for you to implement immediately, get your team more focused, or think about over the longer term. All are geared towards helping you either jump-start or improve your D2C program, improving the relationship your readers have with your books, your authors, and your business. Or, as we phrase it: Easy to Find, Easy to Buy, and Easy to Engage.
Murray is Marketing Practice Lead and Co-founder of Biztegra, a marketing and technology services agency that focuses on helping publishers of all sizes drive discoverability, engagement and revenue. Murray is also one of the lead architects of Biztegra’s Publishr, a search, social and mobile-optimized marketing and commerce platform for independent publishers. Murray has been working on web-based content, platforms and marketing since the mid-'90s and is a recognized expert in online, integrated and social marketing techniques. He has held senior positions with some of the world's largest digital agencies and is a frequent speaker at marketing and publishing industry events. Connect with him at or on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter @MurrayIz.

 Tues., 2:30 pm

MICHAEL CADER will be our featured speaker covering today’s most significant publishing topics in a 2-hour segment. Michael is the creator of Publishers Lunch, the largest-circulation book publishing industry publication in the world, and its companion website For 15 years he created and produced over 300 books through his book packaging company, Cader Books. Publishers Launch Conferences springboard from the branding, vast audience and deep respect for Publishers Lunch–with 45,000 subscribers, the largest publication for book publishing professionals worldwide, and the recognized leader in comprehensive coverage and thoughtful, clear-eyed analysis of the stories and statistics that matter the most in this transitional time.

  Tues., 6:30 pm
Celebrate the industry’s top achievements and award winning titles the evening of May 5 when the Christian Book Award® winners will be announced, the Jordon Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Lane and Ebeth Dennis, and sales and industry milestones honored. Our keynote speaker is Hattie Kauffman, Emmy Award-winning journalist and 2014 Christian Book Award® recipient in New Author for her book, Falling Into Place.  Registration to this event is included with your Leadership Summit registration.
Those who will NOT be attending the Leadership Summit, are invited to purchase separate tickets for $75.


  Wed., 8:15 am

The racial landscape of evangelicalism is rapidly changing. This is great news because research shows that more diverse groups are more effective and generate better ideas.This session will discuss the ways in which we can all work to make space for racially diverse voices.  Christena Cleveland, Ph.D. is a social psychologist with a hopeful passion for overcoming cultural divisions in groups. Drawing from a vast body of research, she uncovers the underlying processes that affect relationships within and between groups and helps leaders understand how to promote an appreciation for diversity and build effective collaborations with diverse groups. She is the author of Disunity in Christ: Uncovering the Hidden Forces that Keep Us Apart (InterVarsity Press), which earned an elusive 5-star review from Christianity Today magazine as well as a Leadership Journal Book Award. Christena is currently writing her second book The Priesthood of the Privileged, which examines power and inequality in the Church. Christena earned a B.A. from Dartmouth College and a Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara. An award-winning researcher and gifted teacher, she has published numerous scholarly articles and is currently an Associate Professor of Reconciliation Studies at Bethel University.

Wed., 9:15 am

In the slow growth market that publishing is today (barring the rare runaway best seller), publishers must increasingly find new ways to increase profitability. Hear from three industry leaders on how publishers are actively engaging in generating increased revenues:

>> Creating new content and revenue streams | Dominique Raccah
The promise of creating a personalized publishing experience for the consumer is here and now thriving. Dominique is the entrepreneurial CEO of Sourcebooks, which she founded in 1987. Today, Sourcebooks is one of the largest independent book publishers in the U.S. and is home to dozens of bestselling authors. Growing through small and large innovations, Sourcebooks has repeatedly created new ways for readers to interact with books, from Poetry Speaks (called the "definitive anthology” of poets reading their own work) to Put Me In The Story, the successful app and website that allows you to personalize bestselling books. Today, Dominique is fascinated by the digital transformation of the book and wonders what more the future might hold for books and readers.

>> Repurposing and monetizing existing content | Kelly Gallagher
Taking your backlist and finding new ’virtual’ ways to monetize it through custom publishing, multiple formats, or expanding into global markets is now available. Kelly Gallagher is Vice President of Content Acquisition for Ingram Content Group, a comprehensive publishing industry services company that offers numerous solutions, including physical book distribution, print-on-demand and digital services. At Ingram, he manages the content acquisition publisher team for North America and leads Ingram's selling and business development activities for print-on-demand and digital distribution products. Prior to joining Ingram, he worked for six years at Bowker serving as Vice President of Publishing Services where he was responsible for the implementation of a host of Bowker business intelligence services. Previous career experience includes serving 10 years as a publisher and six years of association work.

>> Finding new markets or more direct and profitable selling routes | Ron Martinez
Removing the barriers to sell direct has never been more available through emerging retail service models. Ron is the founder of aerbook, and its parent company, Invention Arts. He’s a prolific inventor, with close to a hundred and fifty issued patents or patent applications currently in flight. enables any person or company to easily and profitably sell any of 2MM books plus video, audio, and related merchandise on any website, and directly within social streams and apps. Prior to Invention Arts and Aerbook, Ron served for four years as Vice President, Intellectual Property Innovation at Yahoo!, where he drove and managed the development of hundreds of patent applications and resulting product innovations, and was also responsible for content IP strategy and operations. Ron currently holds nearly fifty issued patents covering a range of increasingly interconnected fields that includes media, mobile, social, advertising, and commerce.

Wed., 12 noon


All women who work in Christian publishing at any level are invited. 
Featuring an executive panel including Tammy Gaines (CFO, Abingdon Press),
Dominique Raccah
(CEO, Sourcebooks), Laura Minchew (VP, Thomas Nelson),
Gretchen Goldsmith
(Pres/CEO, Rose Publishing), and Selma Wilson
(VP, LifeWay Christian Resources) -- will be moderated by 25-year industry executive
Janet McDonald (VP, c3/consulting).

Registration is included with your Leadership Summit registration. (Those who will not be attending the Leadership Summit, are invited to purchase separate tickets for $59.)



Christianity Today

Twin Rivers Paper Co.

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