Special Guests

Matt Mik

Matt Mikalatos

Matt is passionate about helping people have a fresh experience with Jesus. He has been on staff with Cru for 15 years and lives near Portland, Oregon. He’s the author of The First Time We Saw Him, a book about Jesus in the 21st century. If you want to get to know him better before conference, check out his podcast The Storymen, follow him on Twitter, or come hang out at his online magazine, Norville Rogers.


Candice Siewert

Candice is a world-traveling adventurer who never stops asking, “What is that?” She has ministered in 40 countries over the course of her ministry and claims to be fluent in point. She travels frequently every year encouraging Cru missionaries to persevere and remain faithful to God’s call.

Candice has a deep passion and love for Jesus, and for people to know Christ. She is a humorous and straightforward communicator who combines the Word of God and her story to make truth come alive. Candice is on staff in the Upper Midwest region of Cru where she serves as the Global Missions National Director.


James White

James is the Senior Pastor of Christ Our King Community Church in the Raleigh Durham area. Has served as a speaker and consultant for a variety of non-profit and for profit companies. James worked with Cru for 19 years. He and his wife, Cynthia, have been married for 27 years and they have 3 Children Christa 23, Alexis 21 and Justin 19. 


Tom Nelson

Tom Nelson has served at Denton Bible Church for 35 years, much of it as Senior Pastor. One of four boys, he is from Waco, Texas, and grew up playing football and baseball. He holds degrees from the University of North Texas (where he quarterbacked) and Dallas Theological Seminary. Tommy is author/teacher of several books and DVDs, and is the Song of Solomon Conference Speaker Emeritus. He is a featured speaker for several national ministries.

Tom married his best friend, Teresa, in 1972. Their two sons, Benjamin and John Clark, are both married and, together, have given them six grandchildren.

theRESPONSE silhoutte

the Response

theRESPONSE band is passionate about connecting people to their Father in worship, and creating art that edifies the created and glorifies the Creator who relentlessly pursues us to respond to Him. As multi-instrumentalists, their use of both standard instrumentation and electronics allows the band to combine genres in unique ways, and create a fresh and compelling sound for a new generation of worshippers. Based in Austin, Texas, the band came together in 2009. Band members include Russell Parks, Tanner Evans, Jesse Schaefer, Steve Mielke, and Taylor Stearns. For more on the band, visit www.theresponseband.com.