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In thinking about material poverty, it’s essential to consider what the foundations for human flourishing are. How does our view of the human person, theology, economics, and government affect our approach to poverty? How should we view these topics?

Once that intellectual foundation is set, what actions should we take to address poverty? Enterprise and trade have been the normative methods by which people have risen out of poverty. What models exist that maximize the entrepreneurial capacity of the material poor to create wealth?

Please join other members of the Accord Network for a conference that seeks to answer these questions. Through various presentations and extensive discussion, attendees will learn what foundations are necessary for human flourishing and be exposed to actionable models that best harness the creativity of the people they seek to serve.

NOTE: Only applicants from organizations that belong to the Accord Network will receive consideration. Accepted applicants will have all of their conference material expenses and lodging covered.

Paul J. Bonicelli, Ph.D.
Acton Institute

Director of Programs and Education

Paul J. Bonicelli, Ph.D. served as executive vice president at Regent University (VA), provost at Houston Baptist University (TX), and dean of academic affairs at Patrick Henry College (VA).  He began his teaching career as assistant professor of political science at Grove City College (PA) and has taught as an adjunct professor for the Rep. Bill Archer Fellows Program of the University of Texas in Washington, DC.  He holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Tennessee, an MA in Public Policy from Regent University, and a BA in English from the University of Memphis.  Prior to embarking on a career in higher education, he served as a researcher and analyst in Washington, DC on trade issues and democracy promotion.

Government Service: Bonicelli served in President George W. Bush’s administration at the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and was tasked with advancing the cause of political and economic freedom by means of US foreign assistance.  He was confirmed by the US Senate to serve as assistant administrator for Latin America and the Caribbean, overseeing all foreign assistance programs in the region.  Pursuant to the president’s second inaugural address and his national security strategy, Bonicelli worked with the National Security Council and the State Department to devise and implement the president’s Freedom Agenda.  The goal of the agenda was to support peoples seeking to build ordered liberty in their countries.  During his time in the administration Bonicelli had oversight of USAID’s global democracy and governance programs (80 countries as well as international organizations), testified before Congress three times, served as head of delegation in multilateral fora and represented the United States in negotiations with foreign governments and international organizations.

Politics, Policy and Media Experience: Bonicelli has been a foreign policy advisor for several presidential campaigns and currently serves on two committees of the John Hay Initiative (Human Rights and Democracy, International Development) offering specific expertise on foreign policy that supports liberty abroad.  He serves as a senior advisor to the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and maintains a regular national and international media presence (television, radio, web) providing opinion and commentary via various news outlets.  He writes regularly on international relations for Foreign Policy magazine’s Shadow Government blog as well as for The Federalist.  He is a member of the board of directors of American Majority and Voter Gravity (electoral politics training and voter technology development).

Anne Rathbone Bradley, Ph.D.
Institute for Faith, Work, & Economics

Vice President of Economic Initiatives

Anne Rathbone Bradley, Ph.D. is the vice president of economic initiatives at the Institute for Faith, Work & Economics, where she develops and commissions research toward a systematic biblical theology of economic freedom. She is a visiting professor at Georgetown University and has previously taught at George Mason University and at Charles University, Prague. She is currently a visiting scholar at the Bernard Center for Women, Politics, and Public Policy. She served as the associate director for the program in economics, politics, and the law at the James M. Buchanan Center at George Mason University.

Dr. Rathbone Bradley’s academic work focuses on the political economy of terrorism with specific emphasis on the industrial organization of al-Qaeda. Her academic research has been published in scholarly journals and edited volumes. She is currently working on a book that analyzes the political economy of al-Qaeda post 9/11. Based on her academic research she also worked as an economic analyst for the Central Intelligence Agency’s Office of Terrorism Analysis.

Dr. Rathbone Bradley received her Ph.D. in economics from George Mason University in 2006 during which time she was a James M. Buchanan scholar.

Cheryl Cuthbertson
Children of the Nations

Director, Sustainability

Cheryl Cuthbertson is a Navy Veteran and has been an advocate for sustainable best practices in business development and strategic alliances for several decades. She has over twenty-five years of experience in executive management, marketing and business development at several Fortune 500 companies to include Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC), Unisys, and Starbucks Coffee Company. She has been a frequent speaker at several national forums on sustainability and international business development. She now has the privilege of bringing her corporate experience to the non-profit sector and is currently the Director of Sustainable Practices at Children of the Nations (COTN).

At COTN, Cheryl oversees sustainable development across several countries to include designing and facilitating the implementation of global practices to alleviate and interrupt poverty. She works with COTN’s international staff to accelerate independence in water security, food security, renewable energy and economic development.

Cheryl has two sons and six grandchildren. She has continued her post-graduate studies in Executive Management at the University of Washington and is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Global Leadership at Fuller Theological Seminary.

Rev. John Nunes, Ph.D.
Concordia College - New York


Rev. John Nunes, Ph.D. began in July 2016 as the ninth president of Concordia College—New York, an institution of the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod with a diverse (65% non-white) and global student body. Nunes came to this Bronxville, NY campus from Valparaiso University (Indiana) where he held for three year the Jochum Chair, an endowed university professorship.

Previously, Nunes served as the President and CEO of Lutheran World Relief (2007 to 2013), a $50 million (USD) organization with offices in 17 countries working to alleviate poverty and human suffering. Prior to that he was an inner-city pastor in Dallas, TX and Detroit, MI.

An ordained pastor in the LCMS, Nunes holds a Master of Theology and a Doctor of Philosophy degree from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago where Vítor Westhelle was his advisor. With Alberto Garcia, Nunes recently co-wrote Wittenberg Meets the World: Reimagining the Reformation from the Margins (Eerdmans, 2017).

Doug Seebeck
Partners Worldwide

President and CEO

Doug Seebeck is a visionary leader who has spent half of his 39-year career in global economic development abroad. He is the founding president and CEO of Partners Worldwide, a global Christian network that uses business to end poverty. Through partnerships with local community institutions, Partners Worldwide provides mentoring, training, access to capital, and advocacy tools to entrepreneurs in over 30 countries around the world. Seebeck is also a founding member of PW Entrepreneurs, a social-venture capital fund investing in high-impact global enterprises.

In his co-authored work My Business, My Mission, Seebeck shares stories and lessons learned from inspirational business leaders around the world. He holds a B.S. in Agronomy from Washington State University and an M.A. in Leadership Studies from Azusa Pacific University.

Rev. Robert A. Sirico
Acton Institute


Rev. Robert A. Sirico received his Master of Divinity degree from the Catholic University of America following undergraduate study at the University of Southern California and the University of London.  During his studies and early ministry, he experienced a growing concern over the lack of training religious studies students receive in fundamental economic principles, leaving them poorly equipped to understand and address today's social problems.  As a result of these concerns, Fr. Sirico co-founded the Acton Institute with Kris Alan Mauren in 1990.

As president of the Acton Institute, Fr. Sirico lectures at colleges, universities, and business organizations throughout the U.S. and abroad.  His writings on religious, political, economic, and social matters are published in a variety of journals, including: the New York Times, the Wall Street JournalForbes, theLondon Financial Times, the Washington Times, the Detroit News, and National Review.  Fr. Sirico is often called upon by members of the broadcast media for statements regarding economics, civil rights, and issues of religious concern, and has provided commentary for CNNABC, the BBCNPR, and CBS' 60 Minutes, among others.

In April of 1999, Fr. Sirico was awarded an honorary doctorate in Christian Ethics from the Franciscan University of Steubenville, and in May of 2001, Universidad Francisco Marroquin awarded him an honorary doctorate in Social Sciences.  He is a member of the prestigious Mont Pèlerin Society, the American Academy of Religion, and the Philadelphia Society, and is on the Board of Advisors of the Civic Institute in Prague.  Father Sirico also served on the Michigan Civil Rights Commission from 1994 to 1998.  His pastoral ministry has included a chaplaincy to AIDS patients at the National Institutes of Health.  He is the Pastor of Sacred Heart of Jesus parish in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The Acton Institute maintains a vigorous editorial outreach, especially through its president, Rev. Robert A. Sirico.  This site maintains an archive of many of his essays and reviews.

Father Sirico holds dual Italian and American citizenship.

Phil Smith
Hope International

Senior Director of SCA Programs

Phil Smith serves as senior director of savings and credit associations (SCAs) at HOPE International, a global, Christ-centered network providing discipleship, training, savings services, and small loans to families in poverty. In his role, Phil is responsible for overseeing HOPE’s SCA ministry, which currently empowers nearly 500,000 saving group members and their families to save money and build community in partnership with the local church.

Prior to working at HOPE, Phil spent six years at World Relief, where he served as Rwanda country director before transitioning to vice president of operations for marketing and Church engagement. Phil has also served as executive pastor at Walnut Hill Community Church in Bethel, CT, and at Pitney Bowes, where his roles included leadership of their financial services divisions in Canada, Europe, and the U.S. He holds a degree in business administration from Azusa Pacific University. Phil and his wife, Becca, have two sons, a daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren, and reside in the Lancaster, PA, area.

Event Details

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La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club
2000 Spindrift Drive
La Jolla, CA 92037
United States


NOTE: Only applicants from organizations that belong to the Accord Network will receive consideration. This is a complimentary event for accepted applicants. Conference fees, lodging, and all meals during the conference will be covered for accepted applicants.

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