Brian & Colleen Derksen are from Calgary, Alberta, and are the proud parents of Kolbie (10), Logan (9), and Rylie (8). Soon after adopting, they realized that their default parenting strategies were not going to cut it, so they pursued Empowered to Connect training. They are grateful for the ways in which ETC has brought hope and healing to their family, and are passionate about sharing what they are learning with other families. They regularly run groups in ETC parenting support in Calgary at their church (First Alliance) and are now the Canadian trainers for Empowered to Connect.
Joyce Rees has been serving vocationally in ministry for more than 25 years. She has eagerly followed God into challenging adventures that have included the initial community formation and direction of Jacob’s Well (www.jacobswell.ca), as well as pastoring in 6 very different churches. She currently serves as a pastor of Epic Vineyard Church, in Calgary, Alberta. Joyce has given much of her energy to teaching in varied denominations, both in Canada and abroad, sharing biblical insights on topics as widely varied as Sabbath, suffering, evangelism, and justice. Joyce has a great passion for the scriptures and brings a vital challenge to the Church regarding how authentic faith in Jesus is to be lived today. She adores her husband, Calum, and her sons, Finley and Connor.
Brian and Colleen Derksen
Phil Callaway is an award-winning author, speaker, and daddy of three. The best-selling author of twenty-five books, Phil has been called "the funniest Canadian alive," but never by his school teachers. His daily radio show Laugh Again airs across North America, the UK, and Africa. He is a frequent guest on national radio and TV, and his humorous stories on family life have been featured in hundreds of magazines worldwide. But he insists that his greatest achievement was convincing his wife to marry him. Phil lives in Canada with his high school sweetheart who usually finds him funny.
Ann Voskamp is the wife of a farmer, mama to 7, and the author of the four New York Times bestsellers: The Broken Way, The Greatest Gift, Unwrapping the Greatest Gift, and the sixty-week New York Times bestseller One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are, which has sold more than one million copies and has been translated into more than twenty languages.
Named by Christianity Today as one of fifty women most shaping culture and the church today, Ann knows unspoken brokenness and big country skies and an intimacy with God that touches wounded places. Millions do life with her at her daily photographic online journal, one of the Top 10 most widely read Christian sites: annvoskamp.com
Debra and Alan Jones
As an educator and parent of a biological daughter and an adopted son, Debra Delulio Jones, offers more than two decades of first-hand experience in training children with special needs, including adopted, foster, and at-risk children.
She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Special Education and a Master of Education degree. In 2007, Debra formed her own business to educate and assist parents who are on a similar journey with troubled children. Debra is an associate with the Karyn Purvis Institute for Child Development. She wrote a book detailing their family’s journey: “God, Are you Nice or Mean?”
Alan joined his wife, Debra, as Administrative Director of their business, Parent Intervention & Training, after retiring from 27 years in education. Alan has come to completely embrace the Trust-Based Relational Intervention® model. Alan uniquely understands the pressures that dads face as both protector of their families and nurturer of a child who never learned to trust.