Convention Speakers

Keynote and Featured Speakers and Presenters for 2019 (so far!)

 Rachael Carman


Rachael had it going on—or so she thought. After surviving sixty-three months of pregnancy, countless sleepless nights, and 35,000+ diapers, this one-time control freak encountered God’s grace. And she encourages you to do the same! 


In her books How Many Times Do I Have to Tell You? and How to Have a HEART for Your Kids, Rachael challenges mothers to surrender their will to their heavenly Father and draw closer to Him. She invites everyone to join her in loving God passionately and worshiping him fully while sweeping up Cheerios, doing laundry, and planning dinner. You will be affirmed in your role as a mother as Rachael speaks of her struggles with perfectionism and impatience and shares her challenges, failures, and victories amid the ever-changing seasons of life. Her honesty will surprise you, and her humor will put you at ease. You can find her many helpful articles and videos at her website. 


Rachael is also a sought-after speaker. She has spoken across the United States as well as in Europe, Asia, and Africa. 


Rachael loves laughing with her family, playing in the dirt, eating dark chocolate, and walking on the beach. 


Davis Carman


Davis got started on this homeschool adventure with a providential two-by-four on the side of his head. Nineteen years and three graduates later, he hopes to share some of the lessons he’s learned along the way to help other families enjoy the most successful, satisfying, and Christ-centered home school possible. 

His mission is to help homeschooling families learn, live, and defend the Christian faith. This is accomplished in part through his work as president of Apologia Educational Ministries, the #1 publisher of creation-based science and Bible curriculum. 


Davis is especially passionate about his family. He married Rachael in 1986, and God blessed them with seven children. He isn’t a perfect husband or father, but he loves being with his wife throughout the day (by working out of a home office) and immediately available to handle disciplinary matters or to experience an extraordinary Deuteronomy 6 moment in the course of an ordinary day. 


He is an international speaker and advocate for home education, having served twelve years on the board of North Carolinians for Home Education as well as being the North Carolina Ambassador for the Home School Foundation. He is also a founding board member of Homeschool Now USA. 

Davis is also the author of three illustrated children’s books designed to instill a biblical worldview. Good Morning, God is based on Deuteronomy 6, and A Light for My Path is an ABC book based on Psalm 119. His latest, In the Beginning, is based on the creation account in Genesis. 


He believes that if there was ever a time to homeschool, it is now! 


Carolyn Simonds

Carolyn has been actively involved in HOME's ministry for many years.  She is a veteran homeschool mom of six children. Carolyn serves as a teacher and mentor to other HOME leaders, and plays a leadership role in a number of HOME events and endeavors.


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.


Chris Wilcoxson

 Chris and his wife, Tiffany, are founders and pastors of Life Source Ministries in Brunswick, ME. They have served within HOME's ministry as coordinators in various areas for a number of years, and currently serve as HOME Board Members. For Chris and Tiffany, homeschooling was a decision of faith made together before having children. They have a heart for helping families build healthy homes, as well as fighting for parental rights. Chris and Tiffany reside in Georgetown, ME with their seven children. 


Kim Mazone

Kim has a passion for living a “learning lifestyle” and encouraging homeschooling families. As a certified teacher, she taught elementary school before having her own children. Kim and her husband, Zach, have been part of the Homeschoolers of Maine leadership team for a number of years and are homeschooling their two teenagers. 




Joanna Martel, BS in Biology, Secondary Education, MS in Educational Leadership,

Joanna is a 25 year educator who demonstrates a firm commitment to the belief that any learner,regardless of age or position in life, has the ability and right to progress on a unique path of development and growth. With a demonstrated history of working in education and management in private, public, and home school venues, Joanna and her company, Martel Learning Group, brings experience in leadership, collaboration, and program development from seminal idea to full realization and beyond, for the advancement of those you care about.


Dr. Rachel Morris, Ph.D. MLT (ASCP) 

Dr. Morris is the mother three gifted young adults and grandmother to two beautiful little girls.  Alongside her Mr. Incredible, she has been parenting with awe and wonder for over 25 years. Identified as gifted in early elementary school, Rachel’s journey to embracing and understanding her own giftedness has not been easy, but parenting  and teaching her own children was her greatest encouragement. It has also been her greatest adventure.

A Maine native, Rachel is a microbiologist who teaches in the Biomedical Laboratory Diagnostics Program at Michigan State University. When she’s not teaching, she loves spending time with her family and her dogs, reading and talking about science, and yoga. You can find her podcast in which she translates the science that affects your daily life with co-host Alyssa Preiser at


Dr. Eileen Morelli, Ed. D.

Eileen Morelli is a certified Reading Specialist in 5 states including Maine and an  Educational Consultant for new program development,  curriculum mapping and student assessment.  She has published several journal articles and spoken at state and national conventions about assistive technology for struggling readers as well as programs and strategies that work for dyslexic students. She has training in the Orton-Gillingham method of teaching and is committed to the direct, multi sensory, explicit instruction for teaching children to read and write. Eileen and her husband, Paul have 3 grown children, PJ (Jill), Tom(Noel) and Licia (Jed) and 7 wonderful grandchildren. They live in Camden, Maine. 


Kathy Dunfee

Kathy and her husband began their homeschooling journey 20 years ago. Inspired by Charlotte Mason and the gentle art of learning, Kathy immersed her two children in living books, nature, story, poetry, music, and fine art. It made all the difference even in her own life. Kathy acquired a deep reverence for the wonder and beauty of nature from spending her childhood “in the woods.” She is passionate about engaging children in nature so they may experience its life-long source of refreshment. Kathy is a Mass Audubon teacher naturalist. She taught at Plumfield Academy (a Charlotte Mason school in Danvers, MA) and currently teaches at Our Secret Garden (a nature/literature based pre-school in Newbury, MA.)


Raylene Hunt

Raylene M. Hunt, B.S. Ed., is a veteran homeschool mom of 18 years, has been a part of the HOME Leadership team for many years.  She lives with her son in Camden and they are in their final year of their homeschooling journey.   


Meadow Rue Merrill 

Meadow is the Christopher Award-winning author of the inspirational adoption memoir Redeeming Ruth: Everything Life Takes, Love Restores (Hendrickson Publishers). A former journalist, she corresponded for The Boston Globe, wrote parenting essays for The New York Times, was a contributing editor for Down East magazine--all while raising six children. Most recently, she is the author of the five-book Lantern Hill Farm picture book series, which includes The Christmas Cradle and The Backward Easter Egg Hunt, with charming illustrations and an interactive story to help young readers share the light of Christ during the holidays (RoseKidz). Merrill, who currently teaches narrative writing to high school students, home schooled her children for fifteen years and believes that with encouragement, practice and the right tools, all children can learn to be better writers.  


Sharon Carlson serves as the Director of School Relations at Gordon College. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Biblical Studies and English Literature from Gordon College, and her Master’s degree in Pastoral Counseling from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.  She has worked in Student Development at both the secondary and higher education levels since 1997. She served as Dean of Students, Assistant Head of School, Interim Head of School, and College Guidance Counselor over ten years at Covenant Christian Academy in Peabody, MA, where she helped start the high school program, and created the school’s first student life and college guidance programs. Sharon is a member of the Executive Council for the New England Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (NEACRAO) as Co-Chair of Reverse College Day. She is also a member of the Advisory Council for Coastlands Consultants, a spiritual formation and mentoring ministry to Christian schools in the northeast.

Molly Riley

Molly Riley, an educator at heart, is passionate about education and especially classical education. She is an adjunct faculty member at New England Bible College and Grace Evangelical Seminary in Bangor, Maine teaching courses in education and business. After a professional marketing career managing consumer brands in both the health and wellness and beauty categories, Molly has focused her attention on her family and community. She serves as a Classical Conversations Foundations Tutor. In 2017, she joined the advisory board of Amicus, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing services for individuals with disabilities. Additionally, she works with a women’s group on the University of Maine campus. A Maine transplant, Molly grew up in Northwest Arkansas. She holds a bachelor’s and two master’s degrees in education and business from Baylor University, Wheaton College, and Northwestern University.


Tim Hurd

Tim was homeschooled K-12 before attending and graduating from Cairn University with Business Administration and Bible degrees in 2012. Since then he has worked in leadership positions with Worldview Academy, a nation-wide leadership and discipleship program based in Texas, and Bodenseehof, a Torchbearers Center in Friedrichshafen, Germany. He and his wife, Laura, have a son named Ezekiel and live near Cairn University where they are excited to continue investing in student’s lives and growing daily in their walk with the Lord.


Kathleen Flynn Neumann

Kathleen is Manager of Education and Interpretive Programs for Maine Historical Society. She is responsible for developing and implementing curriculum, programs, and interpretive strategies for students and the general public at MHS, as well building relationships with Maine teachers and schools. Formerly, Kathleen taught middle and high school Social Studies in Massachusetts and Connecticut.  As a teacher she worked closely with Mystic Seaport both as a consultant and as a Mystic Seaport for Educators Fellow publishing artifact articles, living document pages, and lesson plans for the Mystic Seaport for Educators website. She also worked seasonally as a Park Guide at Adams National Historical Park, in addition to spending one summer as the Assistant Tutor to the Historic Deerfield Summer Fellowship Program.  She holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in History with a certificate in Public History from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.   Kathleen is a member of the New England Museum Association and of the American Association for State and Local History. 

Jessica Ireland

Jessica started Learning with Fun in 2012 because she believes in Personalized Learning and loves helping young minds Learn and Grow.  As a teacher at both public and private schools, Jessica was not able to make the difference she wanted with her students so she set out on her own in 2015.

With a BA in Social work and a Masters in Education from St. Josephs College, Jessica is also licensed in ABA therapy and spent many years working with students who have behavioral or developmental learning delays.  Jessica is also trained and applies these methods in her teaching in Lindamood Bell and Orton Gillingham based learning. Jessica’s philosophy in teaching takes a Student Centered approach toward learning.  She builds individualized curriculum for each student’s lesson based on his or her learning style and she discovers these learning styles by following her B·A·I·N·E·S·! Method.  Here she studies students Behaviors, Aspirations, Interests, Nutrition and Exercise along with any of the Students learning challenges. Her BAINES! method ensures she take the entire student into consideration.  Her approach is effective and is proven to work.  Her methods allows for positive long-term change including personal growth and development within her students.It is Jessica’s passion to help children learn in a way that helps them succeed and build their confidence. 

Nick Umphrey

Nick Umphrey has been a high school counselor in eastern Maine since 2002 and is a homeschooling parent with his wife, Bronwyn. Taking his experience in both, Nick started Chickadee College Consulting to assist Maine homeschooling families to navigate the career and college planning process.  

Rachael Magill

Rachael Magill is the Director of Early College Programs at the University of Maine at Augusta where she has worked for over 3 years. In her role, she helps students, families and high school administers across Maine navigate the early college process. Prior to UMA, Rachael Coordinated Early College Programs for Arcadia University in Pennsylvania. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a Master of Arts in Humanities.