David R. Dykes began his preset position as Executive Director of the Dykes Foundation following the death of his father, D. L. Dykes, Jr., in 1997. David was already producing the foundation’s flagship series, FAITHANDREASON®, which brought together leading scholars and authors in roundtable discussions in which they responded to themes and questions provided by video segments taken from the provocative sermons of D. L. Dykes, Jr.
David earned the BA in Philosophy from Centenary College in 1966 and a Master’s of Divinity from the Candler School of Theology at Emory University in 1974. As an active member of the Louisiana Conference of the United Methodist Church from 1974 to 1980, David served appointments as Minister of Adult Formation. During this period he shifted his career focus from parish ministry to working in academic religion at his Alma Mater, Centenary College, in Shreveport, Louisiana, lecturing in religion and philosophy and serving as Director of Centenary ‘s innovative Program for Church Careers. During this period he also did extensive training in psychotherapy and did counseling in school and parish settings.
In 1981, he relocated to Denver, Colorado an was Director of Adult Formation for Trinity United Methodist Church. While in Denver, David was presented the opportunity to pursue training in television production and began producing Sunday School programs for the Louisiana United Methodist Conference and other churches and organizations. David produced, “Perchance To Dream,” an award-winning program for Habitat for Humanity that aired on PBS stations across the nation. He continued television production in Denver until he assumed his present position with The D. L. Dykes, Jr. Foundation.
Deborah W. (Debo) Dykes
Deborah W. (Debo) Dykes holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master’s degree in Education. She has been an elementary school teacher, middle school science teacher, and a director of academic advance for higher education. Following graduate work in Anglican Studies she was ordained in the Episcopal Church at St. John’s Episcopal Cathedral in Denver, CO. Debo has worked in spiritual formation and education, first as Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry at St. John’s Episcopal Cathedral in Denver, Colorado, then as Canon for Formation & Mission at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral in Jackson, Mississippi, and most recently as Director of Programming for the Center for Formation & Mission for The Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi.
As Director of Media and Curricula, Debo is responsible for planning, development and implementation of all of The D. L. Dykes, Jr. Foundation’s marketing strategies, marketing communications, and public relations activities. She oversees the development and implementation of support materials for FAITHANDREASON® seminars and products and coordinates with supporting church partners for FAITHANDREASON® seminar events. She assist in the editing and production of FAITHANDREASON® materials.
Debo was a NASA Teacher in Space National Finalist and has earned many awards including Louisiana Teacher of the Year and selection as a Chautauqua Institute Fellow in the 2008 New Clergy Program, Chautauqua, N.Y. Debo’s years of experience in teaching elementary, middle and higher education, and the development of curriculum, are imbued with a commitment to accuracy and justice. Her participation in a Lilly Endowed program, “Behold the Feminine Face of God,” was a transformative experience that suffused her teaching, research, and subsequent authoring of her new children’s book series, Stellarella! It’s Saturday! and her second book Stellarella: Seashells on the Seashore!
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
Since 2007, Jennifer Vail has sustained and grown the usage and sale of FAITHANDREASON® products and services to our international list of clients. Jennifer maintains our sales volume, product mix, and keeps current with supply and demand, and changing trends so that all FAITHANDREASON® products remain within a selling price competitive with similar products available on the market. Using her strong organizational skills, Jennifer maintains an inventory of all FAITHANDREASON® products. She is proficient in recording a complete history of each product sold and maintains a data base of contact information for each individual and organization who purchases our products. Jennifer assembles, packages, and ships orders to an international cliental.
Jennifer is primarily the “first voice” of The D. L. Dykes, Jr. Foundation when calling our office. She is well versed in the mission and purpose of the work of The D. L. Dykes, Jr. Foundation and greets every caller with a professional and warm welcome. Jennifer is key in maintaining ongoing relationships with FAITHANDREASON® clients.
Jennifer Vail is a native of Mississippi.
Vocalist Ann Phelps (B.A. Hastings, M.A. Yale) co-hosts the Faith And Reason 360 podcast with Debo Dykes and helps Faith And Reason build relationships with the next generation of activists. She works as a community activist with faith-based non-profits, a freelance liturgist and public theologian, and teaches at Millsaps College in Jackson, MS.
Scott Colwell helps ensure that original media productions for all Faith And Reason products are created at a high standard of quality. He is an 8 time Emmy Award winning Producer / Director / Editor with more than 20 years experience in film and video production. His body of work ranges from documentaries to children’s educational programming.
Ed Foose is a Southeast EMMY Award nominated and Telly Award winning editor and motion graphics artist from Rochester, New York. He is a graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology School of Film and Animation. His specialty lies in taking broad and/or complex concepts and presenting them in a way that is both visually pleasing and easily digestible. When he’s not working on film and video projects, Ed is working on the ongoing comic series Loner Club.
Creative Distillery helps Faith And Reason with graphic and product design, brand consulting, digital marketing, and other initiatives. The marketing firm takes clients in nonprofit and social justice sectors, among others.