REV. MITCH PACWA,
Keynote speaker

Father Mitch Pacwa, S.J. received his B.A. in Philosophy and Theology from the University of Detroit, summa cum laude. He was ordained a Catholic priest in 1976 with the Society of Jesus, as a Master of Divinity and S.T.B. from the Jesuit School of Theology of Loyola University, magna cum laude. At Vanderbilt University, he received his Master of Arts as well as his Ph.D. in Old Testament.

He is best known for his appearances on EWTN for over the last thirty years. Fr. Pacwa is a best-selling Catholic author and has written numerous books on a variety of topics about the Scripture and our Catholic Faith to continue to teach us and generations to come.

As we know, since the 1960’s the Catholic church has lost several generations of baptized Catholics due to a lack of knowledge of their Catholic Faith. But since the 1980’s there has been efforts to address the lack of faith in our young adults: Theology on Tap, Cardinal Newman Society, Fellowship of Catholic University and College Students and Young Catholic Professionals to name a few known efforts. Father’s mission is to offer younger adults the opportunity to talk with him in informal, smaller venues. He wants to listen to, support, and strengthen the next generation of Catholics as they strive to live their Faith in today’s culture. In 2017, Father extended his teaching mission by embarking on a new ‘Legacy of Faith’ Initiative. This is a specific effort to reach younger Catholics in answering their questions and concerns as living as Catholics in the 21st century.

PATTY SCHNEIER
Catholic Author and Speaker

Patty Schneier is a Catholic author and speaker from the Archdiocese of St. Louis.  Since 2003, she has been inspiring Catholics to reignite their faith.  Her book, “Love Letters From Mom on What Matters Most,” is a must-read for parents who want to pass the faith on to their children.  She hosts a weekly radio show to promote holy vocations, entitled “The Pearl of Great Price” (heard on Covenant Network.)  Patty has been a guest on EWTN as well as numerous Catholic radio programs. She received the 2015 “St. Paul Woman of the Year” Award and the “Archbishop Robert J. Carlson Excellence in Communications” Award for her work in evangelization.  She and her husband Larry have been married for 29 years; their oldest son was recently ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of St. Louis.

ROBIN L. PIERUCCI, MD MA
Neonatologist and Medical Director

Dr. Robin Pierucci is Jewish convert to Catholicism, a wife, mother of three, and a practicing neonatologist. She also has a master’s degree in bioethics as well as completing the National Catholic Bioethics Center ethics certificate course. In addition to her full-time clinical duties within the NICU, Dr. Pierucci remains active in perinatal palliative care, as well as leading ongoing performance improvement projects for drug exposed infants and their families.  She has multiple publications in peer and non-peer reviewed journals and has spoken around the country on multiple perinatal and ethical topics.  Additionally, Dr. Pierucci has appeared on a number of programs aired on EWTN including, Women of Grace, The Journey Home, EWTN Live, and her documentary about in vitro fertilization.  She has been a member of the Catholic Medical Association for many years and has recently became an associate scholar with the Charlotte Lozier Institute and a board member of the American College of Pediatrics.

MICHAEL J. BRESCIA, MD
Senior Vice President & Executive Medical Director, Calvary Hospital

Michael J. Brescia, M.D. is Senior Vice-President and Executive Medical Director of Calvary Hospital located at 1740 Eastchester Road, Bronx, NY 10461. He received his B.S. Degree from Fordham University, Bronx, NY and his MD from Georgetown University Medical School. Dr. Brescia is internationally famous for the invention of the AV Fistula which has world-wide acclaim for the preservation of life in terminal renal disease and in renal transplantation which is now an accepted mode of therapy. Dr. Brescia has received awards and lectured world-wide on hemodialysis and access. While at the peak of his career in organ transplantation, he surrendered the economic fortunes to develop and create a hospital of singular nature devoted to terminal cancer patients as the response to euthanasia and assisted suicide. At the present time, world-wide acclaim has resulted in visitors from nearly every European and Asian nation for education.

WILLIAM L. TOFFLER, MD
Professor Emeritus, Family Medicine, Oregon Health and Science University

Dr. William Toffler is Professor Emeritus of Family Medicine at Oregon Health & Science University where he practiced the full scope of family medicine and taught medical students and residents for more than 34 years. He is co-founder and National Director of Physicians for Compassionate Care Education Foundation  (PCCEF), a non-profit organization that promotes compassionate care for severely ill patients without sanctioning or assisting their suicide. PCCEF physicians affirm an ethic based on the principle that all human life is inherently of value and that the physician’s roles are to heal illness, alleviate suffering, and provide comfort for the sick and dying. He is committed to defending the long-standing, medical prohibition against doing harm.  He has been a member of the Physicians Resource Council at Focus on the Family for more than 20 years.  He has frequently invited to speak about medical ethical issues at both national and international conferences and on US television and radio including the NPR, 60 Minutes, Good Morning America, as well as international media in Canada, Australia, the UK and Japan.

MOST REV. SALVATORE J. CORDILEONE
Archbishop of San Francisco

  • Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone was born in San Diego on June 5, 1956. He attended public school through 12th grade and earned his BA in philosophy from the University of San Diego in 1978.  He earned a second bachelor’s degree in sacred theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University in 1981.  Archbishop Cordileone was ordained to the priesthood on July 9, 1982.  He continued his studies at Gregorian University from 1985-89, earning a doctorate in canon law.

 

  • He was appointed Judicial Vicar for the Diocese of San Diego in 1990 and served as an assistant to the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura from 1995-2002.  On July 5, 2002, Pope John Paul II appointed him the Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of San Diego, where he served until his appointment as Bishop of Oakland on March 23, 2009. On July 27, 2012, Pope Benedict XVI appointed him as the ninth Archbishop of San Francisco.  He was installed on October 4, 2012.

 

  • Archbishop Cordileone chairs the Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage and sits on the Committee for Canonical Affairs.  He is a member of the Governing Board of the International Theological Institute and the Subcommission on the Liturgy for the Anglican Ordinariates.