Julien Musolino

Julien Musolino is a Franco-American cognitive scientist, public speaker, author, and associate professor at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, where he holds a dual appointment in the psychology department and the Center for Cognitive Science. Born and raised in France, Julien studied at the University of Geneva, in neighboring Switzerland, the University of North Wales, Bangor, in the United Kingdom, the University of Maryland, and the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of numerous scientific articles, and is regularly invited to give lectures in the United States and around the world.

You can find more information here.

Ben Goossen

Goossen received a BA in history and a BA in German Studies from Swarthmore College in 2013.  He is currently a doctoral student in the Department of History, Harvard University.  His book, noted above, will be published by Princeton University Press in 2017.  In July 2016, he presented on the Nazi influence on Mennonites at the World Mennonite Conference.

Lisa Schirch

Lisa Schirch is a Research Professor at Eastern Mennonite University’s Center for Justice and Peacebuilding, the North American Research Director for the Japan-based Toda Institute for Global Peace and Policy Research and a Policy Advisor at the Washington DC-based Alliance for Peacebuilding.  Most of the time she is a stay at home mother to her two children, an avid gardener, an untrained artist, and supports the work of her Jewish husband, Bill Goldberg, who is the Director of EMU’s Summer Peacebuilding Institute.


Dr. Ryan Claassen

Ryan L. Claassen graduated from Goshen College in 1994, received a PhD from University of California—Davis in 2005, and is currently Professor of Political Science at Kent State University.

In his book, Godless Democrats and Pious Republicans (Cambridge University Press 2015), Claassen challenges a conventional wisdom in which recently mobilized religious and Secular extremists captured the parties and created a God gap. Instead Claassen finds many religious divisions in American politics are artifacts of basic social changes.

Claassen’s work has also appeared in American Politics Research, the Journal of Politics, the Journal of Political Science Education, Political Behavior, Political Research Quarterly, and Public Opinion Quarterly.  He has conducted a variety of public opinion polls and serves as a media expert on public opinion, voting, and elections.

Dr. David Litwa

Dr. David Litwa is a scholar of religion. The focus of his research is Christianity in the ancient Mediterranean world, esoteric cults, and Christian gnostic sects. He is currently a lecturer in Classics at the College of William & Mary.

His educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts (BA) Grove City College, Summa cum laude Major: Philosophy, Master of Divinity (M.Div.) Emory University, Master of Theology (Th.M.) Duke University and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) University of Virginia.

Dr. Litwa is the author of several books. The two most recent are: Refutation of All Heresies: Text, Translation, and Notes, Writings from the Greco-Roman World (Atlanta: SBL Press, 2015) and Iesus Deus: The Early Christian Depiction of Jesus as a Mediterranean God (Minneapolis: Fortress Academic, 2014).

Gwen Gustafson Zook

Gwen Gustafson Zook is a member of the pastoral team at College Mennonite Church.  Gwen grew up in Portland, OR, and graduated from Lewis & Clark College with a degree in Elementary Education.  She later studied at Iliff School of Theology and at Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminary where she earned a Masters Degree in Pastoral Ministry.

Gwen has served with Mennonite Central Committee in Atlanta, GA; Denver, CO; Kingstown, Jamaica; Portland, OR, and Goshen, IN.  She has also provided leadership for Service/Learning programs, pastored at Faith Mennonite Church in Goshen, taught Middle School at Bethany Christian Schools, and served as a Campus Pastor at Goshen College.
Gwen’s work with MCC has exposed her to a wide variety of global justice issues.  In November 2015, she joined with  14 other church leaders to take part in an MCC/MCUSA-sponsored “Come and See” Learning Tour to Israel/Palestine.
Gwen is married to Les Gustafson Zook who works with MCC regionally and as the North American Mennonite Relief Sale Coordinator.  Gwen and Les have two young adult children, Si (24), and Sadie (21).

Roger Beachy

Roger BeachyDr. Roger Beachy is Founding Executive Director of the World Food Center at UC Davis. In 2013 he was Founding Executive Director and CEO of the Global Institute for Food Security at the University of Saskatchewan. He is also Professor of Biology at Washington University in St. Louis. Beachy was appointed by President Obama to the National Science Board in June, 2014; he was previously appointed first Director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) in the U.S. Department of Agriculture, serving from October, 2009 through May, 2011. He served as Chief scientist of the USDA from January – October, 2010. Dr. Beachy was founding president of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, Missouri, 1999-2002, and headed the Division of Plant Biology at The Scripps Research Institute as the Scripps Family Chair in Cell Biology from 2001-1998. Dr. Beachy was Professor in the Biology Department at Washington University in St. Louis, and Director of the Center for Plant Science and Biotechnology from 1978-1991. Dr. Beachy is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, and was awarded the Wolf Prize in Agriculture (2001). He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Academy of Microbiology, Foreign Associate of the National Academy of Science India, the Indian National Science Academy, and The Third World Academy of Sciences, and is a Fellow in the Academy of Science of St. Louis. He received the Bank of Delaware’s Commonwealth Award for Science and Industry (1991) and the Ruth Allen award 1990 from the American Phytopathological Society (1990), among other awards.

Brianne Donaldson

Brianne Donaldson is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies at Monmouth College, and an independent researcher for Vegan Outreach. She explores the intersection of Indian and western metaphysics, critical animal studies, and religion and science. The goal of this work is to undermine systematic violence toward excluded populations and to re/construct unruly eco-political communities of decentralized, mutual exchange.

After some false starts at various colleges, and beginning a career as a muscle therapist, Brianne received a BA in Bible, Religion, and Philosophy from Goshen College in 2005 and a MA in Theology and Ethics from AMBS in 2007. Her Master’s thesis argued for extending moral imagination to all creatures, drawing upon Christian and Anabaptist sources. She received a MA in Religion, and PhD in Process Studies from Claremont School of Theology, and continues to study Sanskrit through Australia National University.

Donaldson is the author of Creaturely Cosmologies: Why Metaphysics Matters for Animal and Planetary Liberation (Lexington Books 2015), an edited collection Beyond the Bifurcation of Nature: A Common World for Animals and the Environment (Cambridge Scholars Publishing 2014), and the forthcoming collection The Future of Meat Without Animals. www.briannedonaldson.com

Phil Zuckerman

Dr. Phil Zuckerman, PhD. is professor of sociology and secular studies at Pitzer College in Claremont, California. He is also an affiliated professor at Claremont Graduate University and a Fellow of the Secular Global Institute.  He writes for Huffington Post and also writes a regular blog for Psychology Today.  He is the author of several books to include Living the Secular Life, Faith No More and Society Without God.

In 2011, Phil founded the first Secular Studies department in the nation.  Aiding Dr. Zuckerman in his knowledge of this group is the year he spent living and teaching in Scandinavia, doing qualitative research in Denmark and Sweden, two of the most secular countries in the world.

Phil grew up in Pacific Palisades, California.  After attending Santa Monica College, he transferred to the University of Oregon where he earned a BA, MA and a PhD, all in sociology.  He currently lives in Claremont with his wife, Stacy, and their three children.

Richard Hagenston

Richard Hagenston is a Hoosier by education, if not by residence, having bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism from Indiana University. After deciding to go into the ministry, Hagenston obtained a Master of Divinity degree from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C., leading to ordination in the United Methodist Church.

At the time he felt called to go into the ministry, Hagenston was the public relations services manager for an advertising agency. He was a pastor for eight years, serving two appointments in Maryland.

Hagenston writes, “I decided to return to the business world because, in spite of the satisfaction I found in serving my congregations, I cam to have some of the same theological concerns that are reflected in my book. I left the pastorate with the status of honorable location, meaning that I retained my ordination rights but with no church appointment.”

He is currently retired and living in Roanoke, Virginia.

Paul Keim

Paul Keim is Professor of Bible, Religion and Classical Languages at Goshen College, Goshen, Indiana, and an adjunct faculty member at the Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary in Elkhart, Indiana. He is a graduate of Goshen College (B.A.) and AMBS (M.Div.) and received his Ph.D. in Ancient Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University (1992). He also studied at the European Mennonite Bible School (Bienenberg) in Liestal, Switzerland.

Paul and his family served with Mennonite Central Committee in Poland in the early 1980s, and this provided an opportunity for Paul to study at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, and Warsaw University.

Before coming to Goshen, he taught at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana and at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina. More recently he spent a year as visiting professor at the Friedrich Schiller University in Jena, Germany.

Loren Johns

Loren Johns is our guest speaker February 2015, with a presentation titled Anabaptist Approaches to Scripture: What Is Different and Why?

Loren’s educational background includes a B.A. in Bible from Goshen College, a Master of Divinity degree from AMBS, and a Ph.D. degree from Princeton Theological Seminary in 1998. He was Professor of Religion at Bluffton College from 1993-2000, Academic Dean at AMBS from 2000-2007, and is currently Professor of New Testament and Director of the Master of Divinity Program at AMBS. In addition, Loren edits the Believers’ Church Bible Commentary and is New Testament Editor of the Anabaptist Dictionary of the Bible. He is a former pastor and has authored numerous scholarly articles.