After a highly successful inaugural Philos Young Leaders Conference in Washington, D.C, we’re coming to Texas to bring you the Houston Young Leaders Conference!


Topic: “Lessons from the Middle East on Reconciliation”

Where: Houston, Texas

When: Friday, April 27-Saturday, April 28th

Who: Students, Young Professionals, Pastors, Educators, and others with a passion for promoting positive Christian engagement in the Middle East

Tickets: $35 for students and $50 for general admission (And… $15 early bird registration for all before April 15th)
Click here to register!

Schedule: Click here to download the conference schedule.

Poster: Click here to download the PDF promotional poster.

Come learn about the experiences of minorities in Iraq, Israel, and Egypt from those who have lived them. Gain practical advice on Christian leadership. Become a part of a pioneering network and gain access to more resources, opportunities, and people!

Speakers include:

KEYNOTE: Pastor Donnell A. Johnson Sr.

Pastor Donnell Johnson is a native of Richmond Texas and is the son of Reverend Donnie Johnson Sr., Pastor of the Zion Chapel Missionary Baptist Church in Fulshear Texas. He attends Prairie View A&M University where he is pursuing course work as a criminal justice major. He has served as both Youth and Young Adult Pastor as well as Assistant Pastor to his father. At age 27, Pastor Johnson was called to the New Jerusalem Baptist Church, where he is in his fourth year. He has been preaching the word of God for more than 10 years. He serves on the National Baptist convention of America Youth and as the General Secretary for the Fellowship United District Association Inc. In 2015, Pastor Johnson received an award for Houston’s Next Generation of Leaders under 40. He is a devoted and proud father to Jordynn Johnson, Donni Aundrea, and Donnell Johnson, Jr. Pastor.

Robert NicholsonRobert Nicholson

Robert Nicholson is Founder and Executive Director of The Philos Project. He holds a BA in Hebrew Studies from Binghamton University, and both a JD and MA in Middle Eastern history from Syracuse University. A former U.S. Marine and a 2012-13 Tikvah Fellow, Robert founded The Philos Project in 2014. His advocacy focuses on spreading the vision of a multi-ethnic and multi-religious Middle East based on freedom and rule of law. Robert serves on the Board of Directors of Passages, and is a publisher of Providence: A Journal of Christianity and American Foreign Policy. His written work has appeared in First Things, The Federalist, The Jerusalem Post, The Hill, and The American Interest, among others.


Juliana Taimoorazy

An Assyrian Christian born and raised in Iran, Juliana Taimoorazy is the founder and president of the Iraqi Christian Relief Council, an organization that raises awareness about the persecuted church in Iraq and helps Assyrian refugees resettle in the United States. Smuggled out of Iran in 1989 to avoid religious persecution, she sought asylum in America and obtained her master’s degree from Northeastern Illinois University. Since then she has held numerous positions in media and the nonprofit world, and has advocated on human rights everywhere from television and radio to the halls of Capitol Hill. She enjoys reading nonfiction, listening to opera and classical music, and disrupting polite conversation with talk of religion and politics.


Mina Abdelmalak

Mina Abdelmalak is Arab World Outreach Specialist at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Born and raised in Egypt, he received a law degree from Ain Shams University in Egypt. He worked as a legal researcher for the Egyptian Union of Liberal Youth (EULY), a Cairo-based, non-profit organization, which promotes classical liberalism among Egyptian youth. He supervised a program within EULY on the status of Coptic Christians in Egypt.

Assaf Boker

Assaf is 30 years old and lives in Tel Aviv with his girlfriend. Growing up with a father who was a career diplomat, Assaf spent most of his childhood outside Israel in different countries across Europe. As a result of his childhood, he developed two major passions – meeting new people and teaching about Israel.

Assaf served in the Gaza envelope region for most of his service as commander in the combat intelligence unit. After his service, Assaf followed his passion for teaching about Israel and worked for three summers in Camp Ramah in California, a Jewish summer camp, as an educator.

He is a graduate of the Hebrew University with a double major in political science and international relations. For the past four years he has been working as a licensed tour guide introducing Israel to diverse groups. His philosophy is to tackle tough questions and try to get a full understanding of Israel and the region. He believes no question should remain unasked and specializes in geopolitical tours and seminars that address the complex issues and questions concerning Israel and the region.


Khalil is a Palestinian Christian, born in the Gaza Strip. Growing up, Khalil was taught that Israel and the West were responsible for the suffering of all Palestinians, and he grew to hate both. After the 2008 Gaza war, Khalil decided to move to the West Bank, where he was exposed to the true Christian faith. His life changed dramatically when he accepted Christ and start following His teaching. As result of his conversion, Khalil started working to love the people who he’d grown up seeing as enemies. As he succeeded in loving them, Khalil recognized how much bitterness and hate had made him blind to reality. Today, Khalil expresses a great love for his people, and believes that turning away from hate is the only way forward. Khalil is working to change the perception of Israel and the West, fighting anti-Semitism, and is educating his neighbors about good things their so-called “enemies” are doing.

Click here to sign up!

“I attended the Philos Leaders Conference in December, 2017. I was very much impressed with the Philos Project, with the staff, and with all the alums of the program. As a native Israeli, I felt like Philos has a very even-handed, direct analysis of the Middle East and the problems plaguing the region. What most impressed me was a group exercise in which each of our groups had around an hour to brainstorm solutions for the endemic political problems in the region. It was a real challenge, and I feel that it gave us an idea of the real stress and short deadlines policymakers usually have to face when dealing with these issues. Overall, it was a great experience, and I would highly recommend it to any Christians who have an interest in Israel specifically, or in the Middle East in general.”  

– Elad Vaida, Harvard University ’16, Middle Eastern Studies