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One of our mandates is to serve the least among us – the poor. The question is, how should we even think about poverty? The second question is, what models can we actually employ that enable people to use their God-given abilities and potential to create wealth for their families and their communities?

The goal of the Rethinking Poverty: Urban Entrepreneurship conference is to equip attendees with ideas that will allow them to think about poverty from a new perspective and act in such a way that truly benefits urban communities instead of unintentionally harming them.

Think: We will begin the conference with two lectures that focus on some foundational ideas that are essential to understand before we jump to action. If we err in our thinking about poverty, then surely our actions to serve those in poverty will lead to more harm than good.

During these lectures, we will talk about the fundamental characteristics of the human person made in the image of God and what that means for our fight against poverty. We will also discuss basic economic concepts and the proper role of government and civil society in addressing poverty.

Act: The preponderance of the conference will consist of a presentation by Hustle PHX, a partner organization of the Acton Institute’s PovertyCure initiative. Hustle PHX, an organization dedicated to training urban entrepreneurs in the city of Phoenix, AZ, will explain their model and work in detail. Attendees will leave equipped with actionable knowledge about how they can possibly mimic that same model in their own communities.

Ideal conference attendees will be proven community leaders, pastors, business people, and nonprofit managers who have an interest in transforming their urban communities. The attendees should possesses a desire to learn about how to think about foundational issues related to poverty as well as a passion to act to eradicate poverty through a business-focused, entrepreneurship-based model.

Conference attendance is by application only. Applicants will be accepted on a rolling basis. Applications close on August 20, 2018. Conference fees, meals, and lodging will be covered for accepted applicants. Travel scholarships are available.

About Hustle PHX: Some of the best natural entrepreneurs in the United States are in underserved urban communities. They are called hustlers – visionary risk-takers who seize the opportunity to move product and turn a profit. They have the God-given skills, attributes, and talents of an entrepreneur, but they lack key resources needed to create sustainable businesses that benefit the broader community. At Hustle PHX, we want to let the hustlers hustle – for the common good.

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

Vice President of Economic Initiatives

Anne Rathbone Bradley is the vice president of economic initiatives at the Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics, where she develops and commissions research toward a systematic biblical theology of economic freedom. She is a professor of economics at The Institute for World Politics and Grove City College. She is a visiting professor at Georgetown University and George Mason University and has taught at Charles University, Prague. She is currently an Acton Affiliate scholar and a visiting scholar at the Bernard Center for Women, Politics, and Public Policy. She is a lecturer for the Institute for Humane Studies and the Foundation for Economic Education.

Dr. Bradley is the co-editor and author of “Counting the Cost: Christian Perspectives on Capitalism,” “For the Least of These: A Biblical Answer to Poverty” and “Be Fruitful and Multiply: Why Economics is Necessary for Making God-Pleasing Decisions”

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 ranges on the question of income inequality and economic freedom as well as 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.

Ronjour Locke Headshot
Ronjour Locke
Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

Instructor of Preaching and Urban Ministry

Ronjour Locke, serves as Instructor of Preaching and Urban Ministry at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. He also serves as an affiliate pastor for the Acton Institute. Previously, he served in Baltimore as pastor of First Baptist Church of Brooklyn and as a member of the Christian Life and Public Affairs Committee of the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware. He holds degrees from Lancaster Bible College and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and is currently a Ph.D. candidate at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Prof. Locke is happily married to Anne, and they have four children.

Oye Waddell Headshot
Oye Waddell
Hustle PHX

Executive Director

Oye Waddell is the executive director of Hustle PHX. Waddell grew up in inner city Los Angeles and has a long track record in urban education and entrepreneurship. He attended the University of Washington on a full athletic scholarship to play football. He later earned a Master of Public Administration from the University of Southern California, and a Master of Education from Arizona State University. He is the founder of Gameplan International and serves as a pastor at New City Church in downtown Phoenix.

Event Details

Start Date

End Date


New City Church Phoenix
1300 N Central Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85004
United States


Conference fees, meals, and lodging will be covered for accepted applicants. Travel scholarships are available. 

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