Phil Hart

Founder & Chief Innovation Officer

Phil Hart is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. He began pastoring churches when he was 20 years old and has served in a variety of settings in the church including, local pastor, theology professor and Conference Minister in 4 UCC Conferences. Phil has a degree in Psychology and three master’s degrees in theology and communication. Phil has a passion for innovative and creative expressions of faith and ministry and believes the greatest untapped resource in our communities is the creative energy of our people.

Shea Watts

Editor & Projects Coordinator

Shea Watts’ background is in worship leading and songwriting in the church, as well as writing for the Huffington Post’s Religion blog. After graduating with his Master’s in Religious Studies in May of 2015, he is now a PhD student at Chicago Theological Seminary. Shea’s research explores the physiology of religious experience(s), particularly how bodies are stimulated through sensory stimuli. Understanding how different bodies experience spirituality differently, then, is what attracts him to the Via Innovation Lab. He believes that, since God is creative and continues to create, being creative is a spiritual act, a sacred ritual in which all can participate.

Shelby Elliott

Director of Operations & Communications

Shelby has background in design and communications, as well as experience in office management. Around here, she wrangles all of the logistical pieces of our projects and events, and carries out our marketing & communications efforts. Shelby is also the mother of a delightful 3 year old named Jack, a volunteer for Move United Church, and an avid practitioner of yoga and thrift shopping. 🙂  

Shelby is passionate about our work at Via, because she believes that the goodness of living a full, and creative life is deeply spiritual, and that we often are too narrow in our interpretation of those experiences. She hopes her work with this project will help to bring about more good in the world, and empower those we encounter to lead more meaningful lives.

Dani Kennedy

Intern

My name is Danielle Kennedy and I am a third year at The Ohio State University. I am majoring in Psychology, minnoring in Speech and Hearing and working towards getting my interpreters license in American Sign Language. I am apart of the woman’s fraternity Alpha Phi and I ice skate on the Ohio State Synchcronized Ice Skating Team. I enjoy regular trips to sushi restaurants and reading books in my free time.
 My mother and father met in the Air Force where my dad made a career for 22 years and my mother completed her four years. After she was discharged she raised myself and my two younger sisters in a magical world of paint brushes and glitter. Our many homes have always been filled with every color in the rainbow thanks to her being an artist. Growing up in a military household gave me the chance to live in many different places and meet many different people and my mom gave me the chance to truly become my own person. Learning about VIAs mission and all their goals was everything I had been looking for in an internship and I can’t wait to see where this new year takes us.

Phil Hart

Founder & Chief Innovation Officer

Phil Hart is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. He began pastoring churches when he was 20 years old and has served in a variety of settings in the church including, local pastor, theology professor and Conference Minister in 4 UCC Conferences. Phil has a degree in Psychology and three master’s degrees in theology and communication. Phil has a passion for innovative and creative expressions of faith and ministry and believes the greatest untapped resource in our communities is the creative energy of our people.

Shelby Elliott

Director of Operations & Communications

Shea Watts’ background is in worship leading and songwriting in the church, as well as writing for the Huffington Post’s Religion blog. After graduating with his Master’s in Religious Studies in May of 2015, he is now a PhD student at Chicago Theological Seminary. Shea’s research explores the physiology of religious experience(s), particularly how bodies are stimulated through sensory stimuli. Understanding how different bodies experience spirituality differently, then, is what attracts him to the Via Innovation Lab. He believes that, since God is creative and continues to create, being creative is a spiritual act, a sacred ritual in which all can participate.

Shea Watts

Editor & Projects Coordinator

Shea Watts’ background is in worship leading and songwriting in the church, as well as writing for the Huffington Post’s Religion blog. After graduating with his Master’s in Religious Studies in May of 2015, he is now a PhD student at Chicago Theological Seminary. Shea’s research explores the physiology of religious experience(s), particularly how bodies are stimulated through sensory stimuli. Understanding how different bodies experience spirituality differently, then, is what attracts him to the Via Innovation Lab. He believes that, since God is creative and continues to create, being creative is a spiritual act, a sacred ritual in which all can participate.

Dani Kennedy

Intern