Business Leadership Summit

Event date: September 14, 2017

In a time when Christian businessmen are being bombarded by Satan’s attacks and tempted to abandon Biblical business practices, the Business Leadership Summit is designed to come alongside the church and strengthen the businessmen within the body. The intent is to allow mature Christian business leaders who have successfully led organizations and faithfully served within their churches to encourage others using personal testimony, discussions, and Q&A sessions.  —Dr. Jim Tillotson


Time Agenda
9:00 AM Michael Blackstone                                                                                         “Balancing Church and Business”
10:00 AM Break
10:15 AM Roland Thompson                                                                                                       “The BOW Principle: Believe, Obey, Watch”
11:15 AM Colin Eicher                                                                                                                 “Co-laboring with Your Pastor”
12:30 PM Lunch
1:45 PM Ed Cone                                                                                                                  “Biblical Giving Strategy Within Your Local Church and Other Ministries”
2:45 PM Break
3:00 PM Discussion
5:30 PM Dinner
7:00 PM Panel Discussion
8:30 PM Closing Comments


Person Cost
Individual $50
Couple $75

Registration Deadline: Closed
*This conference is designed for business owners or leaders managing 5 or more employees.
For more information, contact Lydia Patefield at 515-964-0601 ext. 285.

A downloadable PowerPoint is available to promote this event at your church. The PowerPoint is available in either Standard or Widescreen format.

Conference Speakers

Ed Cone

Biblical Giving Strategy Within Your Local Church and Other Ministries

As a young man, Ed began working for his father and brother in the family business known as Graco Children’s Products. He completed his BA from the University of Miami in 1967. Throughout the ’60s and ’70s, Ed served in various capacities within the company. In 1982, through a variety of challenging circumstances, he assumed the role of CEO. He and his executive team led the company through significant growth over the next 10 plus years.

In 1996 Graco was sold, and Ed began CF Capital. As a private equity firm, CF Capital specializes in helping Christian entrepreneurs with financial and leadership advice as they build businesses using Biblical principles. Ed has also served on several profit and nonprofit boards including Christian educational institutions.

Ed accepted Christ as his personal Savior at age 11, having been raised in a Christian home with a godly father to mentor him. Ed and his wife Jane have been married for 45 years and have 5 children. One of his greatest joys is spending time with his 17 grandchildren, with all but 7 residing near his home. The Cones met and have been members at High Point Baptist Chapel for 46 years. They are both actively serving within the church. Ed serves as an adult Sunday school teacher, and Jane has taught the 2 year olds for 40 years. They have lived in the Elverson, Pennsylvania area since 1959.

Michael Blackstone

Balancing Church and Business

Michael has flourished in the business community, analyzing new markets and establishing start-up businesses. He spent 10 years in marketing and advertising for financial organizations, and his background includes a unique mix of finance, marketing, sales, customer service, and business analysis.

Michael co-founded and currently serves with Thompson & Blackstone, Inc., a business think-tank located in West Chester, Pennsylvania. He also co-founded CF InFlight, LLP, a specialty camera sports broadcasting company (best known for the Skycam camera) that was sold in 2004.

In 1998, Michael Blackstone co-founded Frontline Education, best known for Aesop, an automated substitute placement and absence management system for K-12 school districts. In 2010, Michael, along with Roland Thompson, started a charitable foundation called SEED (Stewards Equipping Evangelism and Discipleship) and currently serves as a board member.  In 2014, Frontline Education sold a majority interest to Insight Venture Partners. With a number of acquisitions under its belt, Frontline Education continued with Michael as President for nearly two years after the investment by IVP; Michael now sits on the board of directors. He also sits on the board for The Wilds, a camp in Brevard, North Carolina, that serves the needs of young people all over the country. In 2017, he joined the board of BJU Education Group.

Michael lives in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, with his wife, Julie, and has three children: Justen, Alyssa, and Michaela. Michael is active in his church, Bible Baptist Church of West Chester, and has served as a deacon and as a Sunday school teacher; he has also served as the youth pastor for the past 30 years.

Colin Eicher

Co-laboring with Your Pastor

Colin is a Canadian businessman whose walk with the Lord has led him into several businesses over the past 44 years.  These businesses have included service, construction, leasing, manufacturing, oil and gas, publishing, and office furniture distribution.  Colin has served on several corporate, institutional, and charitable boards in Edmonton.  In his first attempt at business ownership as a Christian, he operated on his own strength, learning many valuable lessons of how to start and build a business along with lessons of what not to do.  These lessons and consequences have provided a humbling thankfulness for God’s continued love and mercy along with a deep thankfulness for second chances.  Colin and his wife Lila are retired and reside primarily in Edmonton, and in Australia for the Canadian winter.

Roland Thompson

The BOW Principle: Believe, Obey, Watch

Roland has spent his career applying biblical concepts of leadership and decision-making to business.  His experience spans from startups to Fortune 500 companies operating in the United States, Europe, and Australia.

Roland currently serves on the board of Frontline Education, which he co-founded, and co-operates Thompson & Blackstone, Inc., a business think tank and investment platform. His background includes a mix of entrepreneurism, business analysis, engineering, and design. He was also the co-founder and CEO of CF InFlight, LLP, which introduced the Emmy award winning Skycam ( to the sports broadcasting world (Skycam is used all over the world and is featured on almost all major market American football broadcasts, including Monday Night Football). He has a tremendous amount of experience analyzing new markets and establishing and growing businesses. Prior to these ventures, He spent 10 years building an IT services organization focused on delivering services and software for stock and currency trading applications, as well as developing mobile technology solutions for Fortune 500 companies.

Roland lives in West Chester, Pennsylvania, with his wife, Lisa, and has three children: Christopher, Stephen, and Alicia. Roland is active in his church, Bible Baptist Church of West Chester, and has served as a chair of deacons and as a Sunday school teacher and youth worker.

Conference Location

The Business Leadership Summit will be held in the Nettleton Center at Faith Baptist Bible College.

Faith Baptist Bible College
1900 NW Fourth Street
Ankeny, IA 50023

Hotel Recommendations

These hotels are offering special discount rates for the Business Leadership Summit.

Hotel Name Rate Phone Number
Comfort Inn $94.99 515.963.1100
Fairfield Inn $90.00 515.965.8400
Holiday Inn Express $109.95 515.965.2400
Ramada Inn $74.00 515.964.1717