Clay Routledge, PhD

Keynote Speaker

Dr. Clay Routledge is an author, behavioral scientist, consultant, public speaker, and professor. He studies basic psychological motives and cognitive processes and how these motives processes influence wellbeing, physical health, cultural belief systems, and intergroup relations. He has published over 90 scholarly papers, co-edited two books on existential psychology, and authored the book Nostalgia: A Psychological Resource. He was also the lead writer for the TED-Ed animated lesson Why Do We Feel Nostalgia? His new book Supernatural: Death, Meaning and the Power of the Invisible World will be released in 2018. Dr. Routledge’s research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, John Templeton Foundation, and Society for the Scientific Study of Religion. You can find out more about Dr. Clay Routledge at clayroutledge.com.

Kavin Senapathy

Kavin is an author and public speaker covering science, health, medicine, agriculture, food, parenting and their intersection. She is a proud Science Mom, and is featured in the new documentary (sciencemomsdoc.com) about moms seeking to raise their children with facts rather than the fear and hype so common in the parenting world today.

Hector Avalos

Dr. Hector Avalos is Professor of Religious Studies at Iowa State University, where he was named Professor of the Year in 1996, and a Master Teacher in 2003-04. A former fundamentalist preacher and faith healer, Dr. Avalos is now one of the few openly atheist biblical scholars in academia. Born in Mexico, Avalos received a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Arizona in 1982, and a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School in 1985. In 1991, he became the first Mexican American to earn a Ph.D. in Hebrew Bible and Near Eastern Studies at Harvard. He is the author or editor of ten books, including The End of Biblical Studies (2007). His most recent is The Bad Jesus: The Ethics of New Testament Ethics (2015).


Christopher S. Rogan

Dr. Chris Rogan is an Assistant Professor of Physics & Astronomy at the University of Kansas.

K. Christopher Beard

Dr. Beard is a Distinguished Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and KU. His research focuses on reconstructing the origin and early evolution of the order Primates and its major clades. He is especially interested in documenting how changes in the Earth’s physical environment have impacted the evolution of early primates and other mammals.

Paulyn CartWright

Dr. Paulyn Cartwright is an Associate Professor of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology at the University of Kansas. Her research focuses on understanding evolutionary patterns and developmental processes in medusozoans.