Workshops & Presenters

Wednesday, May 4, 9:30–10:45 a.m.

Choosing your direction: creating a communications plan
With the number of communication channels available these days, trying to get the word out about anything without a plan is a bit like embarking on a trip with no notion of where you want to go or how you're going to get there. Communications plans don't have to be elaborate, but if they contain a few essential components and answer a couple of key questions, they provide direction and focus to get your message where it needs to go. In this workshop, we'll look at those components and questions and learn how to put a foundational plan in place, a plan that will keep you going in the right direction even as it changes and grows.

Presenter: Christine McTaggart 

Christine McTaggart is the communications director for the Diocese of North Carolina and the chair of the Episcopal Communicators Professional Development Committee. Her career has given her the chance to work in several interesting and very different industries, always with the common thread of marketing and communications. No matter what may change, what remains the same is her enjoyment of how communications can bring people together to share ideas, news, conversations, thoughts, discoveries and more.




Digital evangelism through content creation
As Christian communicators, our job extends beyond the technical aspects of the trade: live-streaming and picture posting. In the last two years, the Episcopal Church has evolved to become a hybrid community, and in so doing, our job now includes creating spaces where our online members can connect and find God. In this workshop, we will go through the steps of identifying our audience and what they gravitate to on our social media platforms, allowing us to brainstorm ways to create content that produces effective evangelism that only lives online.

Presenter: Aida Milien

Adia is a lifelong Episcopalian originally from the Dominican Republic and Haiti. She is communications associate for the Episcopal Diocese of California, working from her home in Miami. Adia's career began in the television production and casting sector, then transitioned to holding different communication positions in various Episcopal churches. Most recently, she led the communications team of Virtual Nuevo Amanecer, a conference of the Latino Ministries of the Episcopal Church. One of her passion projects is “Digital Evangelism: Reaching souls for God through Social Media.” With this project, she helps congregations reach individuals on social media outlets with the resources at hand.



Organizational crisis communication for church communicators: How do we “hear what the Spirit is saying to God’s people” in challenging times?
The field of organizational communication has much to offer church communicators who desire to be well equipped to discern for how best to respond in times of crisis. In this workshop, we will consider the stages of how organizational crises may unfold, how to respond appropriately to varied stakeholders and audiences, and how to discern which rhetorical choices and image restoration strategies make most sense in a given situation. We will look at case studies from corporate and civic contexts, then apply principles learned to church-specific case studies. This presentation blends peer-reviewed research from the organizational communication discipline with theological reflection specific to the Episcopal Church.

Presenter: The Rev. Rebecca Bridges

The Rev. Rebecca L. Bridges, Ph.D., is associate rector for formation and outreach at Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church, Birmingham, in the Diocese of Alabama. A graduate of the Episcopal Theological Seminary of the Southwest (M.Div., 2019), she also holds a Ph.D. in Communication Studies from Texas A&M University (2003), where she focused her studies on rhetoric and public affairs, including coursework in organizational crisis communication.



You should do a podcast about that: the tech it takes to commence your craft
Has anyone ever told you, “You should do a podcast about that”? If the answer is yes, then this session will fill you in on the foundations of how to start, choose a platform, fit out your tech needs, find good guests, and find your audience.

Presenter: Pauli Reese

Pauli (Paul E.) Reese’s mission is to help people and parishes know their belovedness and tell their story, creating a world where kindness and love become infectious and irresistible. As a digital content producer, they have collaborated with industry-leading film and TV professionals and churches across the country. Pauli also a candidate for ordination to the priesthood in the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania.




Get to Know sessions
Come get to know ministries and programs around The Episcopal Church in an informal setting, and learn about how we as communicators can share their good work. Meet folks from and learn about Latino Ministries, Monastic Communities, Good News Gardens, and more. Presenters from each ministry will speak for 10 minutes and follow with a 10 minute Q&A

Wednesday, May 4, 1:45–3 p.m.

Creating a content calendar
“What needs to go out this week in the e-newsletter and on social media? What about our upcoming print newsletter?” Do you ever find yourself rushing to catch up with content you want to publish? Or find yourself panicking that there was something you were supposed to include in the next e-blast but forgot what it is? You need a content calendar! Without one, your content becomes difficult to manage and done at the last minute, all the while worrying that something is falling through the cracks or off your radar. When you utilize a content calendar, you’ve got a one-stop-shop dashboard for you and your team that keeps you organized, aware of deadlines, and more productive. In this interactive session, we will learn what a content calendar is, why a content calendar is important, tools, tips and tricks for how to implement one, and why consistency is your key to success!

Presenter: Katie Clark 

Katie Clark is the director of communications for the Episcopal Church of New Hampshire and the Episcopal Diocese of Maine, leading communications efforts and strategies across all platforms and supporting the communications needs of the Episcopal churches in Maine and New Hampshire. She has an extensive background in communications, public relations, social media, nonprofit management and market research. She has worked in industries from fragrance to finance, from software to seafood, and with clients including Disney, State Farm, Godiva chocolates, Air New Zealand, and the Mayo Clinic.     



Updating a brand: a case study and some tips for success
In the last few years, Forward Movement did a rebranding process and then refreshed that new brand. This presentation will explore that process, which has been hailed as a very successful brand update. Participants will hear about some best practices, more about the Forward Movement process and some tips for other organizations who might contemplate updating their brand.

Presenter: The Rev. Scott Gunn (remote presenter)

Scott is the executive director of Forward Movement, a discipleship ministry of the Episcopal Church. Widely known for Forward Day by Day, they also host conferences, provide digital resources, offer websites, publish books, and create apps. Prior to serving at Forward Movement, he was a parish priest in Rhode Island, during which time he served as part-time communications officer in the Diocese of Rhode Island.




Making the cut – creating engaging video content
Join Jeremy for a hands-on session filled with tips for taking your video content to the next level. While the topics covered will apply to any kind of videography and editing suite, participants will be working specifically with Davinci Resolve. The software can be downloaded for free at https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/davinciresolve.

Presenter: Jeremy Tackett 

Jeremy is senior manager for creative services and digital evangelist in the Episcopal Church Office of Communication.






Christians and mental health
This workshop will highlight the necessity of discussing mental health and mental illness in the parish context. The workshop will also provide practical guidance for those hoping to make their home parish or diocese a place of safety and healing for those who suffer not only in the body but also the mind.

Presenter: The Rev. Ryan Casey Waller

Ryan Casey Waller is a licensed psychotherapist, writer, speaker, lawyer and priest. He studied philosophy and religion at the University of Southern California before pursuing a law degree, a master’s in theology, and a master’s in counseling from Southern Methodist University. He practiced law before turning to a career in ministry, serving in both academic and ecclesial settings.




Get to Know sessions
Come get to know ministries and programs around The Episcopal Church in an informal setting, and learn about how we as communicators can share their good work. Meet folks from and learn about Latino Ministries, Monastic Communities, Good News Gardens, and more. Presenters from each ministry will speak for 10 minutes and follow with a 10 minute Q&A

Wednesday, May 4, 3:30–4:45 p.m.

Conversation groups
Join with others who work in settings like yours – or pick a different one if you want to know more – and engage in some discussion about the work we share in common.

1.     Dioceses
2.     Parishes/Cathedrals
3.     Organizations
4.     General conversation

Get to Know sessions
Come get to know ministries and programs around The Episcopal Church in an informal setting, and learn about how we as communicators can share their good work. Meet folks from and learn about Latino Ministries, Monastic Communities, Good News Gardens, and more. Presenters from each ministry will speak for 10 minutes and follow with a 10 minute Q&A

Thursday, May 5, 9:30–10:45 a.m.

Graphic design for non-designers
Learn some fundamentals of graphic design as well as some tips and tricks in Adobe Creative Suite to improve your designs.

Presenter: Jason Franklin

Jason Franklin is the director of communications at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Winston-Salem, N.C, and before that he managed communications for All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Beverly Hills. Before doing church work, he held graphic design and architecture positions, working with Adobe products for more than 24 years. He has been part of other communications efforts across the Episcopal Church.




Telling the truth with grace
During the liturgical year, we experience life in the shoes of Jesus. What happens when we experience Mary’s point of view? The world seems to change, the setting, the smell, the emotions. In this workshop, we will explore how we tell and listen to stories as the church. Telling stories has been practiced since ancient times. We find ways to relate to our audience, who will hopefully become our advocates and share our story. The pandemic brought forth major upheavals in the lives of families across the globe, especially in Navajoland. As the only Mission of the Episcopal Church, our audience grew with the news of the negative effects of the virus. The work of story sharing began and the means to tell our own stories were presented. Our world explained with Hózhó. Harmony. Balance. Beauty.

Presenter: GJ Gordy  (remote presenter)

GJ Gordy is the communication director for the Episcopal Church in Navajoland (ECN). Her clans are: One who walks around born into the Salt People, the Edge Water People are her maternal grandparents, and the Mud People are her paternal grandparents. This is how she introduces herself as a Navajo Woman. GJ wants to help share Indigenous stories in the Episcopal Church. She loves to fish with her 8-year-old daughter and significant other.  





The power of internal diversity
“And Jesus said, ‘When you know yourself then you will be known. But if you don’t know yourself than you will always be in poverty, for you are the poverty.” The Gospel of Thomas.  The more diverse you are internally, the more you seek diversity externally. Ironically, it is the internal diversity that fosters the cultures of inclusion. While many come to believe that sameness brings safety, security, intelligence and peace, research shows that the more diverse the individual, the more happy, productive, adventurous and resourceful that person is. Diversity fosters authenticity and good leadership. It promotes engagement, belonging and inclusion because the more diverse the individual is internally, the more inclusive you desire to be externally.

Presenter: Dr. Bertice Berry

With a background in Race, Stratification, Diversity, Equity and Inclusivity, Berry points out that the only way to eradicate racism is with God’s help. Because of the systemic nature of racism, Berry says that we are all responsible for our heads and hearts, our families, and the systems we live and work in. We who are in the church, must find our work there. Having worked as a public sociologist for the past 35 years, Berry is now a postulant for the diaconate.




Website group discussion
Do you have a website that works great and you’d like to tell others about it? Or is your website not what you need it to be and you’re hoping to find some help? This informal discussion will talk about some website basics and then allow people to gather in small groups to share and learn from each other.

Moderator: Dan Murphy with panelists Katie Forsyth and Evans Ousley

Dan Murphy is Director of Communications at the Cathedral of St. Philip in Atlanta, where he has served the past 15 years. In this role, Dan oversees all communications and IT functions of the Cathedral parish, including digital and print media, marketing, livestreaming, database management, and network services. Prior to his time in communications, he worked in roles in the stewardship, membership, liturgy, and pastoral care ministries. Dan has recently served as a member of the board and Polly Bond Award committees of Episcopal Communicators, as well as of the board and fundraising committees of Camp Mikell, the camp and conference center of the Diocese of Atlanta. A proud graduate of the University of Georgia and diehard Atlanta Braves fan, Dan spends his free time roaming the woods and paddling canoes with his wife, Anna, and their two children. If they’d stay in the boat, he’d bring their three cats along, too.

Get to Know sessions

Come get to know ministries and programs around The Episcopal Church in an informal setting, and learn about how we as communicators can share their good work. Meet folks from and learn about Latino Ministries, Monastic Communities, Good News Gardens, and more. Presenters from each ministry will speak for 10 minutes and follow with a 10 minute Q&A



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