Convention Speakers

Keynote and Featured Speakers for 2015

Travis Zimmerman


Travis Zimmerman of Speak My Word Ministries loves Jesus Christ with all of his heart. Over the past 26 years his speaking style has been described as electric, inspiring, down-to-earth, and heart-felt. Travis has committed the past 13 years to memorizing God’s Word, relating Scripture to unique analogies and life events which others have enjoyed hearing him recite at national conferences, national and state homeschool conventions, retreats, camps, churches, and colleges. His theme for every message centers on relationships, beginning with Jesus, and his short video devotionals on The Daily Pulse have logged 500,000+ views.


Travis earned an Aerospace Engineering B.S. degree and an MBA. He also served as a United States Air Force officer before God called him to devote his life to ministry. He is currently enrolled in a Master of Arts in Theological Studies at Liberty University and is pursuing ordination through the Evangelical Free Church of America.  Additionally, he is currently writing his third book and serves as an elder at his home church, GracePoint. With God’s help, Travis has overcome unemployment three times, conquered a 16 year addiction, and taken care of his bride, Suzanne, after a horrible accident.  Because Travis has known hard times, he is able to relate to many and point others to the One True Mediator, Jesus. He and his wife live in Hershey, PA where they homeschool their five school-age children: an oldest daughter and four sons. See for more information.


Suzanne Zimmerman

Suzanne is a homeschooling mother to her five children: an oldest daughter and four sons. Her speaking style has been described as practical, relatable, and funny. Suzanne earned a secondary math degree and has been private tutoring for 20 years in her own home-based business. Suzanne knows pain having homeschooled from bed for 14 months after a horrific accident in 2011. Despite struggling with numerous life-threatening issues, she has chosen joy instead of pain and now especially relishes sharing Jesus and impacting others for God’s Kingdom. Suzanne is blessed to speak alongside her husband, Travis, who is the love of her life. They reside in Hershey, PA. See Speak My Word Ministries for more information. 

Faith Berens

Faith Berens holds a master’s degree in reading from Shenandoah University. She has 13 years of teaching experience in both public and private Christian schools, serving as a classroom teacher, Reading Recovery® teacher, reading specialist, and educational therapist. Her areas of expertise are early childhood literacy, reading assessment, and the identification and remediation of reading difficulties. Faith joined the HSLDA team of Special Needs Coordinators in 2008 and homeschools her own children, as well as works as a private educational consultant, evaluator, and tutor. Some of her passions include reading for pleasure, singing, traveling, nature/science, leading Bible studies, and teaching reading to primary age children. Faith lives in Stephens City with her husband, Matthew, daughter, Hailey, and son Hayden.

Cady Crosby


Cady Crosby is 17 years old and homeschooled. She has been involved in public speaking from the young age of four and now participates in it competitively. Cady is part of two homeschool speech and debate leagues, the NCFCA and Stoa. She is qualified to the national tournament in both. Additionally, in 2014, Cady was the American Legion Washington state champion in their annual Constitutional Oratorical Contest. This gave her a slot to the national competition, which took place in April 2014. She will compete again in 2015. 

Cady started Titanic Heroes with her brother at the age of 14 and she has been involved with both the business and presentation aspect of the non-profit ever since. 


Benjamin Crosby


Benjamin Crosby is 14 years old and homeschooled. He is involved in competitive speech and debate along with his sister and has done exceedingly well in every event he’s participated in. Benjamin is qualified to the national tournament in both the NCFCA and Stoa. Benjamin is also an Eagle Scout and uses his status as such to work with scouts throughout the United States. He has created patches that are approved by the BSA and are used with troops across the nation.


Benjamin started Titanic Heroes with his sister two years ago, at the young age of 12. 

The Cast of SMASH


The Southern Maine Association of Shakespearean Homeschoolers (SMASH) is a theater group in its 25th year, and is comprised of homeschool families who come together from the far reaches of central Maine. SMASH students grow intellectually, socially and spiritually while learning about William Shakespeare from a Christian perspective. With the help of director, Pastor Samuel Richards, they learn all the aspects of putting a play on the stage. Through their work, students discover Shakespeare, but they also find interests and talents, and hone abilities and skills they never knew they had! 

Pastor Samuel Richards

Pastor Richards is the senior pastor of the East Winthrop Baptist Church. He is a graduate of Bates College (BA in English), and matriculated at Oxford in 1969 where he received a MS degree in Social Anthropology. He returned to Oxford in 1976 for a MA in Theology.The SMASH theater group grew out of his passion for homeschooling, teaching and truth.The group's main focus has been on the comedies and the later works of the Bard.  

Pastor Richards and his wife, Lynne, have been married 38 years and have six children (who are either in college, or working in the marketplace) and three grandchildren. Together they have served small, rural churches and sought to follow the Lord's leading.

Jean Burk


Jean Burk is a homeschooling mother, author and creator of the revolutionary and award-winning College Prep Genius curriculum, which has helped thousands of high school students prepare for the SAT & PSAT/NMSQT. Her expertise has been featured on FOX, CBS, NBC, ABC, Forbes Living TV, UShopTV, and The Homeschool Channel. She has been a keynote and featured speaker at numerous homeschool conferences, schools, clubs, college nights, etc. Jean currently travels across the United States speaking about how to go to college for FREE!

Zach Mazone

Dr. Zach Mazone, D.O., is a family medicine physician, who has a passion for preventing disease before it starts by encouraging individuals and families to make healthy life changing choices,  and by providing support as they implement these changes.  Zach has been involved with several Lifestyle Programs, here in the U.S. and overseas, as well as, mentoring with some of the best doctors around the country who are specializing in Preventive and Lifestyle Medicine.  He is currently providing health outreach lectures focusing on "Lifestyle Health" & "Natural Ways of Overcoming Depression".  Before God called Zach to medicine, he had careers as a U.S. Naval Aviator  and as Airline Pilot for American Airlines.  Zach and his wife, Kim, enjoy sharing the blessings and challenges of homeschooling their two wonderful children. 


Kim Mazone


Kim is a former Professional Teacher who has many passions in the area of health, family, and wellness.  After teaching school for several years here in New England, Kim moved to Florida with her husband, Zach, and became the coordinator of "The Safe and Drug Free Schools Program" for Escambia County public schools, providing consultation for teachers & guidance counselors in 37 schools.  Kim also gave family workshops on "Health"  for the low-income, high-risk neighborhoods that her grant targeted.  She also has experience as a fitness trainer/wellness educator for the YMCA organization, & has worked for six years as a doula and natural childbirth educator.  Currently she is training to become a Master Herbalist.  When Kim is not teaching her children or others, she loves gardening, cooking, and outdoor sports. 

Jean Young


Jean holds a Bachelor of Science, Library and Informational Technology degree from the University of Maine Augusta, and has completed studies at Rutgers and the University of New Jersey, Information and Library Studies. She has been a Children's Librarian at the Rockland Public Library since 2000.


Celia Jones


Celia is a retired public school music specialist, having taught in Ohio, Wisconsin, Maine, Sao Paulo, South America and Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. She has earned her Master's degree in Music Performance (Violin, Viola, Cello and String Bass) and Music Education. Her passion for creating numerous music opportunities over the last four decades has provided string, wind and vocal groups to excel further than the typical classroom situations. Her professional violin playing includes the Toledo, Milwaukee Civic and Portland Symphonies. Now, her retirement activities continue to encompass her philosophy of “Music Makes Me Smile” while playing guitar, ukulele, violin, kantele, steel drums and singing in three choirs. Celia's style of teaching integrates math, language, science and history skills through hands-on musical experiences. 

Dave Mumford

Dave Mumford was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia (Canada). At the age of 14, Dave took his first drink and lived a reckless and wayward lifestyle until the age of 24, when he was lovingly confronted with the truth of the Gospel (John 3:16). On July 17, 1991, Dave was gloriously saved by the grace of God.

After Dave’s conversion, he attended New Brunswick Bible Institute to study for ministry. Since graduation, he has been traveling, singing, and preaching throughout Canada and Maine. Dave has a passion for living by faith and reaching people with the love of God. Dave also enjoys giving concerts wherever the Lord leads. Dave is married with six children. He and his wife, Noel, make their home in Topsfield, Maine, where he is a pastor.

Victoria Kempf

Victoria is an RN and Internet Safety Expert who advocates for the health and safety of children as they explore the online world. Online Safety is part of the health spectrum for today's youth, especially as online risks such as cyber-bullying and sexting increase. She is also the co-founder of ScreenRetriever, a children's (non-secretive) computer monitoring tool, and the about to be released beta version of, which will help everyone prevent cyber-threats, and learn more about the risks, benefits, age suitability and quality of the website they are visiting. Victoria has published articles in and, and has spoken at numerous parenting groups and on Community Television about Children's Online Safety. 

Carolyn Simonds

Carolyn Simonds has been actively involved in HOME's ministry for many years.  She is a homeschool mom of six children.  Carolyn serves as a Regional Representative and Board Member for Homeschoolers of Maine.


Kathi Kearney

Kathi has served on the HOME Board for many years. She has worked with homeschooling families in Maine for more than 30 years, and helped to author Maine’s homeschool law. Kathi teaches gifted & talented students in Maine, is a Professional Associate with the Gifted Development Center in Denver, and teaches online courses for the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.

Raylene Hunt

Raylene is from Camden, Maine. She has been homeschooling since 2001, when she withdrew her oldest child (who graduated homeschool in 2010) from public school. Raylene continues to homeschool her youngest child. She has been serving with HOME since 2005 in a variety of capacities.  She is currently a local homeschool group leader, and serves HOME as a Virtual Office Assistant helping to coordinate many projects.

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