Moving Ministry Forward

Presenter Information

Getting to Know the Presenters…

Deacon Dean Vernon is a permanent deacon ordained for the Diocese of Grand Rapids in 2017. He has served the Grand Rapids Public Schools as a school psychologist for more than thirty years. He is the author of Successful in Love and The Deception of Sex, Money & Drugs. Deacon Dean has been married to Lori for thirty-four years. They are the proud parents of seven children and grandparents of eight—with four more on the way! Originally from Wisconsin, Deacon Dean is an avid fan of the Green Bay Packers.
Kurt Klement has served the community of St. Ann Catholic Church in Coppell, Texas for almost twenty-five yearsHe was the director of evangelization from 1996 until this January when he transitioned to the role of director of adult ministries. He is also a coach witDivine Renovation Ministries, which provides parishes hands-on support in moving from maintenance to mission. Kurt holds a BS in civil engineering and a master’s in professional counseling. 
Brandon Morel, also known as The Symbolhas traveled across the country and abroad speaking, performing, educating, and engaging the culture to redirect it towards love. He is co-founder of the AMDG movement, which combines the New Evangelization with Hip Hop cultureBrandon has been a designer for Exodus 40 clothing line, the lead organizer of The Encounter NYC, and is in his novitiate as a consecrated lay person of the Institute Id. of Christ the Redeemer (Idente Missionaries), a religious community of Pontifical Rite in the Catholic Faith. He is an active member of the Young Life Catholic Retreats team.  All this while serving as the director of youth evangelization/ evangelización juvenil at St. Michael-St. Malachy in the East New York section of Brooklyn.  
Diana Jorda, co-founder of Ruach Ministry, aspires to become the old lady who unabashedly shares all of life’s lessons and theological themes present in Disney films. She has served on the parish level for more than ten years in youth ministry and three years in communication and evangelization. Currently, she is the pastoral assistant for communications and discipleship at Our Lady Queen of Heaven in Spanaway, Washington. She has served as emcee and keynote speaker for everything from major conferences to local parishes to coming-of-age parties to wedding anniversary celebrations. In 2009, she co-founded the Tacoma (Washington) young adult ministry, Mass Consumption, and in 2018, a regional ministry focused on witness called The Offertory. She considers a good time a big plate of food, being in lovely company, art, and a karaoke mic in hand or any combination thereof. She loves our Catholic faith and the Incarnate Christ within it.

Sarah Kaczmarek serves as the director of pastoral ministry at Encounter Ministries and overseer of the Encounter School of Ministry. She has served in ministry for the last fifteen years and has a desire to see all of God’s children walk in wholeness and holiness. She is the co-founder of the Millennial Church Conferences and a co-creator of Kindred Collective. She has loved serving as a youth minister in a parish and as the associate director of Alpha Catholic before joining Encounter Ministries. She holds an MA in counseling and is pursuing a certificate in spiritual direction.  She can be regularly found exploring new coffee spots, places to eat, and posting her foodie & spiritual exploits to the gram.  

Rich Curran is founder and executive director of Parish Success Group, where he uses his thirty years of service to the Catholic Church to help parishes transform into hubs of vibrant ministry through hands-on training and coaching. He is a national speaker and ministry coach who addresses more than 50,000 youth and adults each year at national, regional, and diocesan conferences, school assemblies, parish missions, and staff leadership daysRich is the author of We Lack for Nothing: Five Essentials to Grow Your Church and numerous magazine articles and blogs. He holds masters degrees in education and pastoral ministry from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota. He lives with his wife and best friend, Cortney, and their sons in Appleton, Wisconsin. 

Eunice Park has holds a BA from the University of California, Berkeley, and a master’s in theology and a master’s in multicultural ministry from Franciscan School of Theology. For several years she was an advisor to the USCCB Subcommittee on Asian and Pacific Island Affairs and a board member on the National Catholic Young Adult Ministry Association. She was most recently the campus minister to the California State University East Bay campus in Hayward, California, and the pastoral associate at Most Holy Redeemer Church in San Francisco. Currently, she is involved in several young adult ministries, including the national gathering of Journeying Together of the USCCB, the St. Joseph Worker Program of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange, California, and the Emergent Group of the Franciscan Federation. 

Edmund Mitchell is a sought-after speaker for conferences, retreats, as well as brand strategy and content creation. He also hosts the Catholic Youth Ministry Podcast and The Show. After 10 years in parish ministry, he started the creative agency Multiply Your Mission to help organizations multiply their mission on social media. Until recently, he served as the director of evangelization and catechesis at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Grapevine, Texas. Edmund is a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville with degrees in theology and catechetics. 

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