Below you will find everything you need to know about your time with us during the 2017 Praxis Academy. If you find information that needs to be updated or have questions, please let us know by replying all to your speaker email. 


Biola University
13800 Biola Ave
La Mirada, CA 90639

We will primarily be in Crowell Auditorium (Plenary Sessions) and Talbot East (Breakouts, Roundtables).
For those who need to park, please use Parking Structure S

When you arrive on campus, please contact Meghan Easley: 724.961.9530 or Dylan Thomas: 717.669.5920

Lodging is proximate to the Biola campus, and we have booked a room for you during the nights you are scheduled to be at Academy. Your room is pre-paid, simply check in using your name at the front desk.

Sheraton Cerritos Hotel
12725 Center Court Drive South
Cerritos, CA 90703

You will find all information on transportation between LAX & the hotel and the hotel & Biola University on the speaker transport page.

Please review this to ensure we have the correct information for your ground transportation needs. If you have changes or questions, please email: lori@praxislabs.org 

We are happy to pay all travel related expenses; we simply need receipts for them in order to comply with strict IRS regulations. Please submit receipts to jon@praxislabs.org by August 16 and include the mailing address you'd like a check sent to.

Jon Hart: jon@praxislabs.org | 612.382.0609 // Contact for: Pre-Event Questions & Speaker Content
Dylan Thomas: dylan@praxislabs.org | 717.669.5920 // Contact for: On-Site Logistics
Meghan Easley: meghan@praxislabs.org | 724.961.9530 // Contact for: On-Site Logistics

Given that talks will be filmed, we suggest a nice & smart-casual dress.


For Plenaries, please meet in Crowell Auditorium 45-minutes prior to the start of the session for rehearsal, sound & slide check. This is critical to ensure there are not technical issues during your stage time.

For Breakouts & Roundtables: plan to arrive 10-minutes ahead of the session starts so we can start on time. There will be host team members around to help you with timing. 

Academy includes 3 types of sessions: Plenary, Breakouts, and Roundtables. We've found delivering content in a variety of settings and formats enhances the student learning experience and gives them exposure to an array of experiences and perspectives. This also means timing for our sessions are tight, thus we appreciate your help in preparing content that is succinct and within the allocated time. We intentionally schedule some sessions for a tight timeframe on the main stage, knowing that the topics are best digested in a smaller format. 

Here's an explanation of the session types:

Plenary sessions are on the main stage with the full audience (~200). There are talks, panels, and interviews. 

Breakouts are a deeper-dive on a topic where 2-3 mentors co-facilitate a conversation and engage the audience for Q&A. Sessions are 40 minutes; consider sharing 15-20 minutes of up front content (between all mentors) then inviting audience Q&A. Expect ~20-45 students per session. 

Roundtables are an an informal time for a smaller group to personally engage with mentors and ask questions about the whole of life — from career, life, or startup advice. These are a unique opportunity to share more personal and off-the-record stories (they will not be recorded), if you are comfortable with that. As you might imagine, students value authentic stories (even if they are incomplete) over prepared or canned answers.


View the full week's event schedule here and meet the mentors here. Please note the below schedule only includes the times we have you down as having specific mentorship/speaking responsibilities. You're more than welcome to attend before or stay after your official mentoring times.


- Given the varying morning routines for those staying at the Sheraton, we've opted to let you choose your own breakfast options that are available in the hotel lobby (sit-down or quick-serve). Keep your receipts and submit for reimbursement after the event.

For those needing a ride, please meet in the lobby by 8:00AM; Scott Kauffmann, Dave Blanchard, and/or Josh Kwan will be driving speakers to campus.

For those arriving on your own, please arrive on campus by 8:20AM and come to the Crowell Auditorium for rehearsal. 


Crowell Auditorium

Worship, led by The Brilliance

Section I // Theology: Vocation & Motives

Implication & Responsibility // Talk, 15 minutes
Steven Garber

Lessons From an Ambitious Plan to Change the World // Talk, 15 minutes
Jena Lee Nardella

Reflection on Motives & Calling

Section II // Culture: Reading & Responding

Cultural I.Q. // Talk, 15 minutes
David Bailey

Love: The Alpha & Omega of Startups // Talk, 15 minutes
Jessica Kim

A Conversation on Race, Gender, and the Social Fabric of Society // Panel, 15 minutes
Jessica Kim, Christy Vines & Anthony Flynn

CONTEXT: After Jessica's Talk, Anthony & Christy will join them on stage. Moderator will ask each of the 1 question and then we'll riff on one another's responses and have a conversation. 

  • To ANTHONY: you gave a talk once that talked about how sometimes people stop short by only thinking about race in terms of what they see today, when the reality is our current moment in culture is downstream from generational patterns that span hundreds of years. Share more about how the social fabric of society includes these generational patterns and what we should do about them

  • To JESSICA: there’s been a lot of news recently about female entrepreneurs and raising capital, specifically when most of the powerbrokers are males. Can you talk about your experience raising capital from top VCs like Gary Vaynerchuk? Which, by the way, audience, she did when she was pregnant!

  • To CHRISTY: both Jessica and Anthony have been working on creative responses as entrepreneurs; but we know that not everyone will be a founder. You’ve worked on both of these issues of diversity and gender -- and spent much of your vocation on them, but advocating for change from within a system instead of building new ones. Can you talk about change from within a system and your experiences with it?

  • Then, have a conversation

Section III // Entrepreneurship: Moving from Insight to Building

Design Thinking: Empathy & Rapid Prototyping // Talk, 15 minutes
Jessica Munro

Co-Founders & Building Your Team // Conversation, 15 minutes
Kurt Keilhacker and Dave Blanchard

Fundraising & Building Relationships // Conversation, 15 minutes
Josh Kwan and Jessica Kim

Conversation points: your goal is to have a back and forth conversation that hits on 3 key aspects of "Redemptive" fundraising. Since you have for-profit and non-profit experience we want this to be a back and forth sharing some of the nuances about each

  • Building Relationships to share idea over “pitching”

  • Any personality can raise $ w/courage and persistence

  • The Startup World is Bigger than VC and Big Foundations

Jessica Kim & Jena Lee Nardella: Lunch with the Emerging Founders
Talbot East, 113



Context is shared below the sessions that you are taking part in. Please use this as a guide to prepare some initial thoughts, frameworks, and stories. We encourage mentors to co-facilitate and plan to share 15-20 minutes of total content before opening it up for 20-25 minutes of student Q&A. 

View the full breakout schedule for each hour here. If you are unscheduled for one of the sessions, feel free to take a break, or attend one of the other sessions. 

2:00 PM - 2:45 PM BREAKOUT I  

Anthony Flynn, Jessica Kim // TE, 107 

We’ve all heard people claim “hey, I had that idea” when they see a cool new startup – perhaps you’ve even found yourself saying it. While many people are flush with great ideas, entrepreneurs are the ones who take action and build something around the idea. This session will focus on the ever-present “I have an idea: what next?” question, and how to move from an idea to creating an actual venture.

Jessica Kim is a serial entrepreneur who has started two venture-backed startups – one that raised $1 million before she graduated college. Jessica is now working on her third venture as an Entrepreneur in Residence at Charles River Ventures, where she’s been in the idea/concept stage of a new venture for a few months. She will discuss how to start moving an idea into actions.

Anthony Flynn – founder & CEO of Gifted, and author of The Execution Pipeline – will share thoughts from his book about how to set goals and milestones to move an idea forward. His experience includes years working in Fortune 100 companies prior to making the leap to start his own venture, coaching dozens of leaders, and leading workshops on how to put your ideas into action.

3:00 PM - 3:45PM BREAKOUT II  

Kurt Keilhacker, Jessica Kim, Tom Blaisdell // TE, P08

From Shark Tank’s rise to one of TV’s top shows, to the dozens of podcasts, hundreds of accelerator demo days, school startup competitions, and thousands of blogs offering advice on how to pitch, there’s no shortage of advice on how to raise capital. But how do we separate the signal from the noise and find wise advice? Perhaps more importantly, how do we, as Christians, think differently about raising capital for our idea? This session will dispel some of the myths around fundraising and provide practical advice on how to build relationships and navigate the complexities of trying to raise capital.

Kurt Keilhacker, a 20-year venture capital veteran who has invested or operated across dozens of technology oriented startups, from Cobalt (IPO / acquired by Sun for $2B) to Mailbox (acquired by Dropbox), is also a deeply clear theological thinker who always helps cut through the noise. Kurt will share some of his perspectives on how Christians might think differently about capital raises, from how they go about it, to who they bring on as investors, and how they divide their cap table.

Jessica Kim, a serial entrepreneur who raised $1m for her first venture before she graduated college and went through a prominent accelerator and raised multiple rounds of capital from prominent investors in her second venture, will share best practices and stories of her experience. Jessica is also working on her third venture as an entrepreneur-in-residence at Charles River Ventures – with whom she built a long-term relationship during her second venture.

Tom Blaisdell, an investor and operator who spent the last 17 years as a Venture Capitalist where he led a dozen investments that resulted in successful IPOs or acquisitions, will bring his deep expertise to the conversation. Tom has developed a passion for teaching along the way, and is now leading the Center for Private Equity & Entrepreneurship at the Tuck Business School at Dartmouth.

4:00 PM - 4:45 PM BREAKOUT III

Christy Vines, Jena Lee Nardella, Jessica Kim, Jessica Munro // TE, 107

While the past number of years have brought about more opportunities for female entrepreneurs and innovators, we have also seen serious allegations of sexual harassment in prominent technology startups and evidence of gender discrimination related to raising capital, showing us how far we have yet to go. Female leaders continue to face particular challenges – whether founder or employee, single or married, children or not, etc. – as they navigate the challenge of making it all work. This solution-oriented session is led by female entrepreneurs and spiritually wise change-makers who will share lessons and approaches to authentic leadership.

Christy Vines’ expertise lies at the intersection of religion and national security, global gender issues, and foreign policy. She was previously the executive director of the Center for Women, Faith & Leadership at the Institute for Global Engagement. Her experience advocating for women’s issues globally will bring a range and depth to this discussion.

Jessica Kim is a serial entrepreneur who has held the simultaneous titles of founder, CEO, wife, and mother – including dealing with the pressure to raise series-A financing for her startup while pregnant. Her stories of achievements and setbacks will help contribute to a robust discussion.

Jessica Munro balances being a founder and mother with the unique compounding challenge of being the wife of an entrepreneur. Additionally, she will bring a perspective from her experience working in prominent organizations (IDEO, Stanford).

Jena Lee Nardella will help facilitate the conversation and share her own experiences, including founding and scaling Blood:Water Mission to become a multi-million dollar nonprofit, and growing her own family with her husband James (they welcomed their second child just a few months ago).


5:30PM - 7:00PM



- Given the varying morning routines for those staying at the Sheraton, we've opted to let you choose your own breakfast options that are available in the hotel lobby (sit-down or quick-serve). Keep your receipts and submit for reimbursement after the event.

For those needing a ride, please meet in the lobby by 8:00AM; Scott Kauffmann, Dave Blanchard, and/or Josh Kwan will be driving speakers to campus.

For those arriving on your own, please arrive on campus by 8:40AM at Talbot East, Andrews Banquet Room. 

Morning Worship
Talbot East - Plaza Level, Outdoor Courtyard

Talbot East, Andrews Banquet room & Plaza Level Classrooms

ROUNDTABLE 1: 40-minutes
ROUNDTABLE 2: 40-minutes
ROUNDTABLE 3: 40-minutes

For each roundtable session, you will connect with a rotating group of 6-14 students and answer their questions across the whole of life. You do not need to prepare specific content for these sessions, rather just be yourself and be prepared to answer their questions and give advice by sharing your knowledge though stories, anecdotes, and critical decisions you've made as a leader. 

Lunch Available
Cafe Biola

Plenary III – The Startup Journey
Crowell Auditorium


Pee Wee Packs // Hannah Vaccaro
APFYT // Josh Payne
Wahi Ride // Diego De La Hoz
Fathering.Me // Justin Stimpson
Thoughtfull // Nathan Otey
Illuminate International // Jordan Perkins
Restoration Apparel Co. // Michael Mitchell
Gomae // Kenton Jarvie


*Jessica: we will send a script out beforehand, as we have you down as doing a few of these introductions & interviews

Goalbook // Daniel Yoo
Gifted // Anthony Flynn
Saving Innocence // Kim Biddle
Human Trafficking Institute // Victor Boutros
Rey Swimwear // Jessica Rey
FreeTextbooks // Jonathan Robinson
May Designs // Micah May
Tegu // Will Haughey
Liberty in North Korea // Hannah Song
The Congregation // Joel Newton 

Emerging Founders, Praxis Fellows and Praxis Core Team // meet at the stage in Crowell immediately following Plenary; we will take group transportation to the dinner, and will be back in time for the concert

12 Sixty Modern Pub & Kitchen
14299 Firestone Blvd
La Mirada, CA 90638

Google Maps Direct Link

Private Concert – An Evening with Propaganda, The Brilliance, & Friends
Crowell Auditorium



We have you down as flying out Thursday morning, and driving your rental car back to the airport