futureconference-90Join us in November for this year's online conference . . .

By bringing together presenters and participants from around the world, we seek to join in conversation around the future for pastoral and spiritual care that we see and hope to create. Pat Appelhans, JD, CEO of the Association of Professional Chaplains, and Valerie Storms, M.Div., BCC, current president of the Association of Professional Chaplains, are two of the 17 presenters already committed to being part of this conference. They will be presenting on the topic of "Chaplaincy Care: Changes, Challenges, and Choices."

The conference, which will be held online at the Oates Institute, November 6-15, will bring together a collection of voices to envision future possibilities and opportunities for pastoral and spiritual care at the intersections of in-patient, out-patient, congregation, corporate, and community care. Our goal is to explore how we work together to create the future we prefer and discover what will it take to develop and prepare for the new possibilities and opportunities that are emerging.

Pat Appelhans


Patricia F. Appelhans, JD, is the Chief Executive Officer of the Association of Professional Chaplains (APC) located in Schaumburg, Illinois. Pat has been with APC since 2009. Prior to serving as the CEO of APC, Pat was a director at an association management company serving as director for several non-profit organizations. Pat has over 30 years experience as a non-profit professional including 20 years as an executive director serving in trade, professional, and service organizations. Pat is also a licensed attorney and past chair of the board of the Association Forum of Chicagoland.

Vallerie Storms


Valerie R. Storms, M.Div., BCC, is the President of Association of Professional Chaplains and serves as the manager of Chaplaincy care at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida. She became a board certified chaplain in 1989 and brings more than 25 years experience in health care chaplaincy to the conversation.  A graduate of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Storms is endorsed by the Alliance of Baptists. Before becoming president-elect and now president of the Association of Professional Chaplains (APC), she served APC in the roles of Membership Services Council chair, Commission on Professional Ethics member, and Florida state certification chair.

Others who will be presenting at the Envisioning the Future of Spiritual Care include:

  • Wendy Cadge, Ph.D., Author, Paging God: Religion in the Halls of Medicine, Massachusetts
  • Patricia Appelhans, JD, CEO, Association of Professional Chaplains, Illinois
  • Carrie Doehring, Ph.D., Iliff Seminary, developed a PTSD program for the U.S. Air Force, Colorado
  • Patricia Donahoo, D.Min., Executive Director of Disciples Women's, Disciples of Christ, Indiana
  • Mark Grace, M.Div., BCC,  Vice President, Office of Mission & Ministry, Baylor Health Care System, Texas
  • Clifford Kuhn, MD, Psyciatrist known as the Laugh Doctor, specialist in integrative medicine, Kentucky
  • Dallas Little, D.Min., Air Force chaplain (Major) working with PTSD, Travis AFB, California
  • Malcolm Marler, D.Min., BCC, Director of Pastoral Care, UAB Hospital, Alabama
  • Ron Oliver, Ph.D., BCC, Systems Vice-President of Mission and Outreach at Norton Health Care, Kentucky
  • George Handzo, M.Div., BCC, Healthcare Chaplaincy and Chaplaincy consultant, New York
  • Doug Ronsheim, D.Min., Executive Director, American Association of Pastoral Counselors, Pennsylvania
  • Bruce Rumbold, Ph.D., Palliative Care Senior Lecturer, Public Health, Australia
  • Paul Simmons, Ph.D., Bioethicist, University of Louisville Medical School, Kentucky
  • Joseph Steier, JD, President, Signature Healthcare, Kentucky
  • Valerie Storms, M.Div., BCC, President, Association of Professional Chaplains, Florida
  • John Swinton, Ph.D., Spirituality and Health, Kings College, Aberdeen, Scotland
  • Dianne Timmering, Vice President of Spirituality, Signature Healthcare, Kentucky

participateYou may participate in this conference from wherever you are as long as you have Internet access. Presentations and some of the discussion and other activities will be available at your convenience. There will be a series of scheduled Live Discussions with the presenters providing the opportunity for real time interaction around their presentations. Prior to the conference, we will hold a how-to workshop to help participants get the most out of this online conference.

Registration for the conference is $49 for Oates Institute members and $120 for non-members. Registration includes:

  • Admission to the Pre-Conference Workshop on How to Get the Most Out of the Online Conference
  • Access to all of the presentions
  • Access to all of the Plenary Live Discussion Sessions
  • Access to the Bookstore and Virtual Exhibit Hall
  • Opportunity to participate in small group discussion
  • Continuing education credit for chaplains, counselors, pastors, and social workers
  • Access to everything in the Conference Center for at least three months following the conference

For non-members, there is a special offer providing a full year of Oates Institute membership with all of the continuing education opportunities we provide plus conference registration for only $189 (Oates Institute membership is $165 per year). (It is also a pretty good way for members to add a year to their memberships at a discount as well.)

Register as an Oates Institute Member

Register as a Non-Member:

Select Registration Option:

 Checks may be mailed to the Wayne Oates Institute, 1733 Bardstown Road, Louiville, Kentucky 40205. Or call the office at 502.459.2370.