2024 Speakers’ Biographical Information

11 am Speaker:  Michael Austin, Ph.D,  –“The Swedish Apostasy and the Founding
of Snow College: How a Group of Surley Swedes Got Mad and Left the Mormon 
Church and Changed the Educational Landscape of Sanpete County Forever.”      

Michael Austin is the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Snow College in Ephraim, Utah. He is the co-founder of By Common Consent Press and the author of 9 books, including the bestselling college textbook Reading the World: Ideas that Matter and the Association for Mormon Letters award winning books Rereading JobBuried Treasures, and Vardis Fisher: A Mormon Novelist. His most recent book, The Testimony of Two Nations: How the Book of Mormon Reads and Rereads, the Bible, was published by the University of Illinois Press in 2023. He lives in Ephraim, Utah, with his wife Wren.

12 pm Speaker: Mike Brenchley  –“Ink to Memory: Highlights From Past Snow 
College Yearbooks and Newspapers.”

Mike Brenchley is an Associate Professor and Dean of the Social & Behavioral Science Division at Snow College. He was raised by two educators in Ephraim, and quite literally in the halls of Snow College. As a boy he would sit outside the classroom of his father, Professor Ralph Brenchley, listening in while he gave history lectures; all the while imagining himself in the stories and adventures of the past. Later Mike would become an alumni of Snow College, earning his Associates Degree as a “Badger”, before moving on to Utah State University where he completed his Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Sociology. He returned to his beloved Ephraim and Sanpete County nearly 24 years ago to start his career at Snow, where he first directed a federal education Trio grant for the College, before shifting to the family business of teaching. He and his wife Meg (who also works at Snow College in the Advising office)
live in Ephraim. 

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