Flying or Flopping?

I hate to be an alarmist, but a pretty severe concern has been stirring up in me for the past several years. It has to do with young adults today. I believe I have the solution, but perhaps the problem hasn’t been on your radar. It should be.

We coaches aim for impact beyond the debate round.

This picture was taken at a 2005 debate camp. I wonder how much impact these young people are having today?

James O’Keefe Is What ‘For Action’ Is About

I’m very happy to announce the keynote speaker for the 2014 For Action Conference: James O’Keefe. He is an incredible example of what Training Minds Ministry means by “for action.”

James O'Keefe

This announcement will upset some. I’ve argued with people who claimed O’Keefe as “too controversial” for the Christian ministry I run. He’s known for his unorthodox practice of strapping a camera to himself, walking into hotbeds of corruption, and posting what he finds on YouTube. In a sane world, his work would earn himself a Pulitzer.

Nowadays if you have an internet connection, a video camera and a little bit of courage, you are more powerful than the New York Times. And if you have the right story, well, you might embarrass the New York Times.

James O'Keefe (Project Veritas)

Daring to Be Controversial

I just signed another For Action Conference speaker. This one person has had more to do with measurable, consequential ACTION than all the other speakers put together. Trouble is, he’s extremely controversial.


Controversy is tricky. I manage an educational nonprofit that needs to stay apolitical. This guy is a political lightning rod, but luckily for me he’s hated by both political parties. He’s not a politician, but has done more to affect policy in America than perhaps most politicians themselves.

For Action Conference 2014 Speaker Lineup

Most of the For Action Conference speakers are in place and ready to roll. I’ve been working hard this week to secure their contracts (there’s a lot to these things, trust me). They’re flying into Colorado Springs in January to teach 50 young adults how to successfully build their own platforms to ultimately impact their world.

For Action Speakers

I’ve been blogging about the For Action Conference for the past week, but I haven’t posted the purpose of the conference till now. The purpose of the For Action Conference is why the speaker lineup is so important. The purpose is:

To teach young people — primarily through the example of successful role models — crucial next steps in their path into business, charity and higher education, to ultimately maximize their impact on the world.

It is “through the example of successful role models” that drove me to seek out these speakers. I wanted to find examples — really good ones — of individuals who successfully broke out on their own. You look into their lives and you think, “Yeah…they have it together.”

More than that: I sought speakers who were actually impacting the world for its own good. These people may be making good money or a good name for themselves, but much more importantly is that they are making the world a better place for their fellow mankind. Their hearts are genuinely bent toward Christian goodwill and compassion for others. They’re generous with their ideas and eager to model to others the joy they have found in their good work.

This is the next level for talented young people, a level too many fail to climb. The For Action Conference attempts to give attendees a leg up to the action that is destined for them. You’ll want to be there — and I bet you can think of a young person who should be there, too — in January at Focus on the Family for the For Action Conference.

Check out the awesome lineup we have so far…

Return on Your Investment

The base cost of the For Action Conference is $179, and lodging is not included. Add airline and hotel costs, you’re talking perhaps a several-hundred-dollar expense, a fair estimate. Quite an investment, I know.

Focus on the Family

If you’re like me, you’re thinking, “Is it worth it?” In the business world, we look at our expenses through the lens of “return on investment.” With a little thought on ROI, a businessman can save quite a bit of money and effort when considering expenses.

If you are a young person considering the For Action Conference, or if you are an adult who wants to sponsor a young person you know, I bet you’re thinking along the lines or ROI. There are some givens. You (or the young adult you know) want to…

  • Make an impact on the world.
  • Take full advantage of the next few years of your life.
  • Avoid mistakes that others commonly make.
  • Network with leaders who have similar ambitions.
  • Connect with a “band of brothers” to learn and grow together.
  • Be trained in fundamentals that will help you succeed.
  • Enjoy Colorado in peak skiing season.

There may be other reasons you’re considering the For Action Conference. From my perspective, I’m throwing in every resource I’ve got to make this first For Action Conference a tremendous value for the investment. I have three huge ROIs that you will most definitely feel from your attendance.

Background of the For Action Conference

When people ask for an explanation of what the For Action Conference is, I direct them to the landing page. When registration opens on Sunday, September 15, there will be a lot more information. For now, this page should explain what Training Minds Ministry is up to.

The 2011 Debate Title Winner was an alumni. He's shaking things up in college now. I want more stories like his.

The 2011 Debate Title Winner was an alumni. He’s shaking things up in life now. I want more stories like his.

“Just give it to me straight,” someone asked me. “Give me the background…why is Training Minds doing this?”

Ah, yes. There is background. And it may surprise you. But when I tell you it, you’re going to totally relate.