News & Events

Concordia-Chicago announces 40th annual Early Childhood Conference


Concordia University Chicago’s 40th annual Early Childhood Conference will be held on the University’s main campus in River Forest on Friday, Aug. 5 from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

The conference, a one-day in-service experience for early childhood (birth to grade 3) educators, will feature workshops for primary, kindergarten and preschool teachers; workshops for childcare center staff and directors; and commercial displays. The conference will provide ample opportunities for networking so that attendees may meet and exchange ideas with their peers. The non-commercial exhibit area will include information about resources and learning opportunities for continuing growth and professional development.

Attendees may earn five (5) Professional Development Hours (PDH) toward Illinois teacher licensing renewal. This conference is a Gateways to Opportunity Registry Verified Conference (5 hours).

The conference will highlight special events with two distinguished speakers:

  • Dr. Kevin Leman, Ph.D., is an internationally known Christian psychologist, radio and television personality, public speaker, and award-winning author of over 50 books. Leman’s book, “Have a New Kid by Friday,” was a New York Times bestseller. Leman has taught and entertained audiences worldwide with his wit and common sense. Affiliated with the global Christian ministry Focus on the Family, Leman is dedicated to helping families thrive.

  • Carol Runge will share wisdom with conference attendees at a morning meet-the-author session. A passionate proponent of literature by and for children, Runge has worked in special education for 35 years as a teacher and administrator. For the past 16 years, Runge has worked as the admissions coordinator for Elim Christian School, an Illinois State Board of Education-approved program that annually serves 300 students with developmental disabilities.

The conference is co-sponsored by the Concordia University Chicago College of Education and College of Graduate Studies. For more information about the 40th annual Early Childhood Conference, contact Carol Smid at or 708-209-3024.