For 25 years Michael McLean has been changing lives with his tender songs and candid messages. He has shared the "hard stories" — those from his own life and those of others — and has sung us all the way to light at the end of the tunnel. It wouldn't be a stretch to say that for every person, twist, or turn along life's path, Michael McLean has the perfect song. McLean released his debut album, You're Not Alone, in 1983 and with every song that followed, his lyrics filled voids, encouraged love, and offered hope. Now, more than 25 albums later, his musical legacy has not only resonated in the hearts of thousands, but continues to be a standard for those seeking meaning and peace.
To celebrate this exciting anniversary, McLean released a boxed set of six albums in 2008. The definitive collection, 25, is filled with his most beloved songs from the last 25 years, many of which were out-of-print, as well as a handful of brand-new songs on each album.
With a background in film, McLean began early in his career making commercials for radio and television, receiving numerous national and international awards for advertising. Such awards included the prestigious Clio Award, National Addy Award, New York Ad Club's Andy Award, two National Emmy Finalists Awards, and the Bronze Lion at the Cannes Film Festival. He later used his film experience to produce and direct several films including,Together Forever, The Prodigal Son, and Mr. Krueger's Christmas starring film legend Jimmy Stewart.
Ever the engaging performer and master storyteller, McLean has shared his beloved Christmas musical, The Forgotten Carols, with more than a half-million people across the country since 2001. With humor and heart, "The Carols" has become a beloved tradition for thousands of families who mark the beginning of their holiday season with this magical musical.
Celebrating the Light, another of McLean's musicals, ran for five seasons at the Promised Valley Playhouse in Salt Lake City and The Garden, an allegorical oratorio written with Merrill Jenson and Bryce Neubert, opened in Jerusalem and has been performed across the country as well as in France, South America, and Russia. His popular sea-faring musical The Ark enjoyed a New York City debut in 2005.
In addition to his music and films, McLean has also authored four books with accompanying CDs – Distant Serenade, Hold on the Light Will Come: And Other Lessons My Songs Have Taught Me, The Forgotten Carols, and most recently, From God's Arms to My Arms to Yours.
McLean and his wife Lynne have three children and live in California.
Brandon Mull resides in a happy little valley near the mouth of a canyon with his wife and three children. He spent two years living in the Atacama Desert of Northern Chile where he learned Spanish and juggling. He once won a pudding eating contest in the park behind his grandma's house, earning a gold medal. Brandon is the author of the New York Times bestselling Fablehaven series and The Candy Shop War.
Originally from California, Vegor has spent the past decade living in Utah. Pedersen works for Utah Valley University as an academic advisor for the Department of Communication. Outside of higher education, Vegor specializes in graphic design, public relations, and the occasional film project.
JaLynn Prince is the Founder and President of Madison House Foundation, named after her 20 year old son, Madison, who has severe autism. The Madison House Foundation benefits individuals with autism as they transition to adulthood. Madison House has sponsored many conferences and round table discussions, educating hundreds of parents and professionals on various aspects of autism. In 1999, Ms. Prince was named the National Young Mother of the Year. Her platform consisted of issues facing families of children with disabilities, which she presented to numerous national and international audiences. She is on the Johns Hopkins University School of Education Advisory Board, the Utah Valley University School of Humanities and Social Sciences Advisory Board, and the American Mothers Inc. National Board.
Isaac Thomas serves as the Director of Quality Resources for the Utah State Hospital. Because of his love for adoption and families, he also works as the Director for Social Services for a private adoption agency in Salt Lake City. Isaac and his wife, Claudia, have seven children (four of which are adopted). He has two Masters Degrees, One in Educational Psychology, and One in Social Work from Brigham Young University; and is a trained adoption workshop educator by the National Council For Adoption. Isaac has assisted in finding families for children for over 10 years, and has presented at numerous workshops addressing the subject of Trans-racial Adoption and Family Transition.
Dr. Shiroma received her undergraduate degree in Behavioral Sciences with an emphasis in Psychology from Utah Valley University, received her Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology focused in marriage and family therapy and her Doctoral Degree in Clinical Psychology with a focus on Religious Studies.
Dr. Shiroma is a member of UVU College of Humanities and Social Sciences Advisory Board, and serves on the planning committee for their annual conference on adoption.
Outside of professional interests, she enjoys cooking, crafting and traveling. An important aspect of her life is family - her husband, daughter and pets.
Lori is the division manager at the Orem Public Library over all public areas and in-house programs. Originally from Washington State, she has lived in Orem with her husband and four children since 1991. She holds an MLS from Emporia State University, and a BMu from BYU. She is excited for the opportunity to assist CHSS outreach efforts to Orem residents. These partnerships not only create unique educational opportunities for UVU students and faculty, they strengthen the entire community by fostering discourse and intellectual engagement.