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Media Training for Faith Leaders


It's one thing to stand behind the pulpit or in front of a friendly audience and quite another to respond when a reporter is asking you questions. Learn how to keep calm and stay on message when the camera is recording.

In this two-day media training, participants will gain a strong foundation of essential communication skills to enhance their ability to effectively deliver a message—especially in this challenging political environment. Marjorie Clifton and Jenifer Sarver are seasoned communications professionals who will deliver a dynamic, engaging, skills-based workshop that will be valuable, not just for media interviews, but also for communicating to key stakeholders ranging from community leaders to elected officials.

The training will be split between instruction time, group discussion, and practice interviews. The best way to learn is to “do,” thus we will work to put newly found skills to work with on-camera practice. The training will offer content on: 

•        The Fundamentals of Effective Communication
•        Understanding the Changing Media Landscape
•        Interview Process and Techniques 
•        Using the Media to Tell Your Story
•        Giving the Interview
•        "What’s Your Message?" Interactive Messaging Discussion  
•        Interview Exercises – On-Camera Practice
At the end of two days, participants will have gained an appreciation for the critical role of communications, an understanding (and healthy respect) for the role of media, techniques for effectively delivering messages that speak to both the heart and mind, and the ability to stay on message no matter what the situation. 

Dates: In-person at Austin Seminary, April 5-6, 2022
Times: 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. each day, with breaks for lunch
Cost: Lunch included. Ten or fewer years in ministry, pay-what-you-can ($150 suggested minimum); More than ten years in ministry, $300. Scholarships available--contact our Director of Educational Design at
Optional guest housing is available on campus for a separate fee of $100, single occupancy, Monday night, April 4 & Tuesday night, April 5.

Workshop Facilitators:

Jenifer Sarver
Principal, Sarver Strategies

Jenifer loves stories and helping people develop and tell theirs. At Sarver Strategies, she works with corporate and nonprofit clients to develop their story – and then train them to effectively tell it. She is a sought-after corporate coach, working with executives and their teams to build and refine their communication skills. She leads classes, workshops, and one-on-one sessions on media training, advocacy and engagement, public speaking, executive presence, and virtual engagement. She brings more than two decades of professional experience in the corporate, nonprofit and political worlds to bear on behalf of her clients. She is passionate about civic engagement, promoting civil discourse and helping more women get elected to public office. In 2018, Jenifer came in fifth in an 18-way Primary for the 21st Congressional District in Texas. She continues to use lessons learned and firsthand experiences from that campaign to help encourage and promote others.

Marjorie Clifton
Principal, Clifton Consulting LLC

Marjorie Clifton is principal of Clifton Consulting LLC and has two decades of experience in communications and policy. As a strategic communications expert for corporations, non-profits and federal agencies, she helps organizations navigate complex communications and policy issues, especially as it relates to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) and brand liabilities.  Her mediation and training programs have spanned five continents and nearly all fifty states. Marjorie’s passion is promoting civil discourse and developing healthy and equitable cultures in organizations.  She is also a media commentator appearing multiple times a week on national networks including CNN, Fox, NBC, MSNBC and PBS.