Our speakers and workshop leaders this year are a mix of writers, musicians, and pastors, all with deep insight into the imagination and all just as captivating behind a podium as behind a pen, piano, or pulpit.
Keynote Speaker and Performer
For more than twenty years now, Andrew Peterson has been about the business of quietly changing lives in four-minute increments. In the city of Nashville where music is an industry in the same way fast food, generic greeting cards, and bumper stickers are industries, Peterson has forged his own path, refusing the artistic compromises that so often come with chasing album sales and radio singles and creating instead a long line of songs that ache with sorrow, joy and integrity, and that are, at the end of the day, part of a real, ongoing, human conversation. Andrew is the author of The Wingfeather Saga children’s fantasy series, the founder of The Rabbit Room, and the artist behind numerous albums.
Diana Pavlac Glyer
Diana Pavlac Glyer is a leading expert on C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien; her book The Company They Keep changed the way we talk about these writers. She is also the author of Bandersnatch, a study of creative collaboration, and Clay in the Potter's Hands, a devotional. Her writing, her teaching, and her work as an artist all circle back to one common theme: creativity thrives in community.
Lanier Ivester is a writer hailing from the beautiful state of Georgia where she maintains a small farm with her husband, Philip, and an ever-expanding menagerie of cats, dogs, sheep, goats, chickens, and peacocks. She is a regular contributor at The Rabbit Room, and she also keeps a web journal at Lanier’s Books, where she is the proprietress of an online bookshop specializing in rare and out-of-print titles from a gentler era. Her work has been featured on The Gospel Coalition and the Art House America blog, as well as The Cultivating Project. A devoted Anglophile and lover of all things bookish, she is currently enrolled on a (mostly) distance-learning certificate program in English Literature at Oxford University.
Lancia E. Smith
Lancia E. Smith is an author, photographer, teacher, and business owner based in Colorado. She is editor-in-chief of Cultivating the Good, the True & the Beautiful, and founder of The Cultivating Project. A grateful lover of the Triune God, Lancia is passionate about the spiritual formation and discipling creative believers. She and her husband Peter run a thriving environmental and engineering firm and try to keep up with their rambling house and gardens called House on the Way. Lancia loves every book she ever read by C.S. Lewis; drinks strong black coffee; and sincerely hopes in her lifetime to reach zero in her inbox!
Heather Walker Peterson
Heather Walker Peterson is a writer for Humane Pursuits and The Well, Chair of the Department of English and Literature at University of Northwestern--Saint Paul, and a Fellow of the Anselm Society. Besides teaching and writing, you'll find her hanging out with her two remarkably different daughters.
Joel Clarkson is composer, author, an all-around artistic handyman. Joel has provided original award-winning music for numerous feature and short films, and has also received high praise as a concert composer and orchestrator. His love for creative writing led him into Christian publishing, where he has co-authored two books, The Lifegiving Home Experience, and A Different Kind of Hero (both with Tyndale Momentum), and into audiobook narration, where his work on the beloved children’s fantasy The Green Ember was nominated in Audible’s ‘Best of 2015.’ He and his sister Joy helm the Anselm Member Artist band Two Benedictions, and have found great happiness in sharing in that venture with their Colorado community through The Anselm Society.
After a career as lead singer in a rock band, Ben Holsteen became a church music director, where he developed a keen interest in re-integrating the past into today's church music. He is the music director at Holy Trinity Anglican Church.
Fr. Matt Burnett
Matt Burnett is the rector at Holy Trinity Anglican Church in Colorado Springs. Born in Texas, he received undergraduate and graduate degrees from Texas A&M, worked for Compassion International all over the world, and founded Knowledge Builders, a small consulting company. He received his M.Div. from Trinity School for Ministry in Pittsburgh in 2002, and founded Holy Trinity in 2004. In addition to his beloved work in the parish, he is currently working on his doctorate, for which his dissertation focuses on the value of C.S. Lewis's fiction to catechesis and training up the next generation of the Church. He is married to Lauren and has three sons.
Ashlee Cowles is the author of Beneath Wandering Stars (Merit Press/Simon & Schuster), a Young Adult novel about a teen who walks the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route in Spain. After pursuing graduate degrees at Duke Divinity School and the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, Ashlee decided to incorporate all that theology and medieval history into her fiction. Raised in a military family without roots, Ashlee is doing her best to 'stay put' and makes her home in Colorado Springs, where she is a Member Artist of the Anselm Society. When Ashlee isn't teaching precocious high school students or writing in a local coffee shop, she's either traveling overseas or curling up with a good book.
Fr. Ken Robertson
Ken Robertson is the vicar at International Anglican Church in Colorado Springs. He came to IAC in 2015 after serving as an Assistant Pastor at an Anglican church in Denver. Spiritual influences include his believing parents, the small middle-Tennessee Methodist congregation he grew up in, the Presbyterian Church, the Navigators Christian ministry, and Denver Seminary. When he's not writing sermons or keeping coffee shops afloat with his black tea addiction, he's spending time with his wife Sarah and his daughters Zoe (3) and Livvy (1). And eating chocolate chip cookies. Lots of chocolate chip cookies.