The Science Through the Eyes of Faith Conference features a lineup of internationally recognized scientists and theologians.
Speaker information in order of appearance.
Dr. Bill Phillips, NIST, Nobel Laureate
“Time, Einstein, and the Coolest Stuff in the Universe”
“Ordinary Faith, Ordinary Science”
Phillips was born to William Cornelius Phillips of Juniata, Pennsylvania and Mary Catherine Savino of Ripacandida, Italy. He graduated from Juniata College in 1970 summa cum laude. After that he received his physics doctorate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 1978 he joined NIST. In 1996, he received the Albert A. Michelson Medal from The Franklin Institute.
Phillips’ doctoral thesis concerned the magnetic moment of the proton in H2O. He later did some work with Bose–Einstein condensates. In 1997 he won the Nobel Prize in Physics together with Claude Cohen-Tannoudji and Steven Chu for his contributions to laser cooling, a technique to slow the movement of gaseous atoms in order to better study them, at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and especially for his invention of the Zeeman slower. Phillips is also a professor of physics, which is part of the University of Maryland College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences at University of Maryland, College Park.
He was one of the 35 Nobel laureates who signed a letter urging President Obama to provide a stable $15 billion per year support for clean energy research, technology and demonstration. He is one of three well-known scientists and Methodist laity who have involved themselves in the religion and science dialogue. The other two scientists and fellow Methodists are chemist Charles Coulson and 1981 Nobel laureate Arthur Leonard Schawlow.
In Oct 2010 Phillips participated in the USA Science and Engineering Festival’s Lunch with a laureate program where middle and high school students got to engage in an informal conversation with a Nobel Prize–winning scientist over a brown-bag lunch. Phillips is also a member of the USA Science and Engineering Festival’s Advisory Board.
Dr. Jeff Schloss, Westmont College
“Cosmos or Chaos?: Evolution, Theism, and the Question of a Good Creation”
Dr. Schloss graduated from Wheaton College and received his Ph.D. in Ecology / Evolutionary Biology Washington University. He has held teaching and fellowship appointments at the University of Michigan, Notre Dame, Oxford, and Princeton’s Center of Theological Inquiry, and serves on numerous editorial and advisory boards related to science and religion. With a goal to bridging polarized debates between disciplines and between Christian and academic communities, Jeff’s scholarship and public speaking involve theoretical and experimental work on human altruism & religious cognition, and interdisciplinary exploration of the fascinating relationships between evolution and Christian faith.
Rev. Leonard Vander Zee, Faith Alive Christian Resources
“From Stardust to the New Jerusalem: Preaching the Gospel in an Evolving Universe”
Rev. Vander Zee is a retired pastor in the Christian Reformed Church of North America. He served five congregations throughout the US, and more recently as Interim Pastor of Preaching at the Church of the Servant CRC in Grand Rapids. He as also Editor in Chief of Faith Alive Christian Resources. He now teaches and writes. Received his Master of Divinity at Calvin Theological Seminary.
Dr. Kent Dunnington, Biola University
“Intellectual Humility and Incentivized Belief”
Dr. Kent Dunnington is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Biola University in La Mirada, CA. He teaches and writes in the areas of virtue ethics and theological ethics. Other research interests include addiction and criminal justice, inspired by his experiences teaching in prison.
Dr. Paul Stroble, Webster University
“Seeing God in the Galapagos”
Dr. Paul Stroble is a native of Vandalia, IL. He is a 1979 graduate of GU and also received degrees from Yale Divinity School and the University of Virginia. He teaches in the philosophy and religious studies departments at Webster University in St. Louis. He has published 21 books on a variety of subjects in theology, history, Bible studies, and religious curriculum, and most recently in poetry. One of his curricular books was What About Religion and Science? A Study of Reason and Faith (Abingdon Press, 2007), and his most recent book is the poetry collection Backyard Darwin.
Dr. Eleonore Stump, St. Louis University
“The Problem of Suffering: A Thomistic Approach”
Eleonore Stump is the Robert J. Henle Professor of Philosophy at Saint Louis University, where she has taught since 1992. She is also Honorary Professor at Wuhan University and at the Logos Institute, St. Andrews, and she is a Professorial Fellow at Australian Catholic University. She has published extensively in philosophy of religion, contemporary metaphysics, and medieval philosophy. She has given the Gifford Lectures (Aberdeen, 2003), the Wilde lectures (Oxford, 2006), the Stewart lectures (Princeton, 2009) and the Stanton lectures (Cambridge, 2018). She is past president of the Society of Christian Philosophers, the American Catholic Philosophical Association, and the American Philosophical Association, Central Division; and she is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Dr. Fred Van Dyke, Au Sable Institute
Fred Van Dyke is the Executive Director of Au Sable Institute. Prior to coming to Au Sable, he served as professor and chair of the Biology Department at Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL, and the director of their Environmental Studies Program. He has served as a wildlife biologist for the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, a scientific and management consultant to the National Park Service, and an ex officio member of numerous interdisciplinary management teams of the U. S. Forest Service. His studies of wildlife ecology, plant ecology and fire ecology have been published in The Journal of Wildlife Management, The Wildlife Society Bulletin, Journal of Mammalogy, The American Biology Teacher, and in the books, The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem: Redefining America’s Wilderness Heritage (Yale University Press 1991) and The Complete Book of North American Mammals (Smithsonian Institute Press 1998). Fred is author of the widely and internationally used textbook, Conservation Biology: Foundations, Concepts, Applications (Springer 2008). Fred has taught on numerous areas of environmental science as well as the intersection of the natural world with ethics, policy, and theology.
Dr. Howard Smith, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
“Alone in the Universe? Religious Insights from Modern Astronomy, from the Big Bang to Exoplanets”
Howard A. Smith, PhD, is a Senior Astrophysicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts, a Lecturer in the Harvard University Department of Astronomy, and an assistant to the Center Director. His academic research emphasizes the origins of stars and galaxies, in particular using techniques of infrared astronomy and spectroscopy. He has been a lead investigator on numerous national and international research programs and on astronomy spacecraft. Dr. Smith was previously the Chair of the Astronomy Department of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC, where he supervised a staff of scientists and educators in the world’s most popular museum. He played a key role in developing museum galleries, education programs, videos, and IMAX movies, including the Academy Award nominee “Cosmic Voyage.” He also served as a visiting discipline scientist at NASA headquarters, where he had responsibility for research grants and small missions. Before joining the Smithsonian, he led an astrophysics research program at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Smith has been recognized by Harvard for his excellence in classroom teaching, and he has mentored both Ph.D. students and undergraduates. He is also active in public education and outreach, lecturing and teaching widely on the topic of science and religion, Judaism, cosmology, and modern physics. His audiences include people from all religious faiths (or atheistic perspectives) and those who normally have only a passing interest or knowledge in science or Jewish mysticism. He is the author of numerous popular science articles and OpEd pieces, recently on the topic “Alone in the Universe,” and of a weekly Smithsonian astronomy research report.
Dr. Smith holds two undergraduate degrees from MIT, in Physics and in Humanities and Science, and a PhD in Physics from the University of California, Berkeley, where he studied under Nobel Laureate Charles Townes. A traditional and observant Jew, he has lectured on cosmology and Kabbalah for over forty years. He has over four hundred published articles in astronomy and astrophysics, and is the author of the book, Let There Be Light: Modern Cosmology and Kabbalah: A New Conversation Between Science and Religion (New World Library).
Dr. Hyung S. Choi, Greenville University
“Science as a Spiritual Quest”
Dr. Hyung S. Choi is Professor of Physics and Engineering at Greenville University. He received B.S. in Physics from Kyung Hee University, South Korea; studied Particle Physics at Seoul National University; received Ph.D. from Graduate Center of CUNY, M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary. He was a Witherspoon Postdoctoral Fellow at CTNS, Berkeley; a Visiting Researcher at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford University; a Visiting Fellow at St. Edmunds College, Cambridge University. His research interested spans quantum information, quantum foundation, gravitation, and the intersection between science and Christian faith.
Dr. David Barnes, Roberts Wesleyan College
“Science and Christian Faith: The Questions of Origins”
Dr. David S. Barnes is Emeritus Professor of Biology at Roberts Wesleyan College, Rochester, NY. He graduated from Greenville College in 1960; M.A., New York University, 1962; Ph.D., Syracuse University, 1972 and taught at Roberts Wesleyan College from 1970 to 2004. Biology courses over the years included Human Anatomy and Physiology, Genetics, Microbiology, Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Biology Seminar, and for 33 years, a core sophomore- level course Science, Technology and Society. Dr. Barnes has been a member of the ASA, AAAS, and APS. His time at RWC also included directing the Cultural Life Lecture Series for several years with approximately 20 speakers per semester. Research interests have included the effects of fiber on intestinal carcinogenesis in rodents and the effects of dietary fiber in humans on serum lipids. Science/faith interests have included presentations in churches, college and seminary settings, science/faith research in the former Soviet Union and forming the endowed annual Barnes Symposium on Science and Christian Faith at Roberts Wesleyan College.
Dr. Craig Boyd, St. Louis University
“Science and Christian Ethics”
Dr. Craig Boyd is professor of philosophy at Saint Louis University in St. Louis, Missouri. He is the coauthor of several books, including Faith and Reason: Three Views and Virtues and Their Vices. He has also published numerous journal articles and has presented at many scholarly conferences.