About Midday Connection
Midday Connection is a live 54-minute radio program (heard live at noon, Central Time, Monday through Friday) designed to encourage women, with a focus on growing the whole person: body, mind and soul.
We build relationships and mentor women through intentional programming, web presence, social media interaction and book publishing, creating a safe place for authentically processing life's journey as we come to know who God is and who He created us to be, while growing toward spiritual freedom and personal transformation.
Authenticity - we will model a safe community for truth-telling in love
Soul care - we will consistently restore our souls, avoiding burnout so that we may wisely lead other toward spiritual transformation
Community - we will together develop the body, mind and soul
Excellence - we are committed to a quality product
Leadership - we will model and encourage women to be leaders (Proverbs 31)
Culture of Respect - we will maintain a place of safety and mutual respect
Cultural relevance - we will educate ourselves and our listeners about the global community
Culture of innovation - we will develop an internal culture of innovation and risk-taking
Anita Lustrea is originally from Blue Hill, a beautiful oceanside town in coastal Maine. She grew up as a pastor’s kid in the north woods of Maine and always had a deep longing for spiritual things along with a desire to reach out to others. Anita attended Ben Lippen High School as a resident student. From there, she went on to major in Bible and Theology at Moody Bible Institute. Upon graduation, she traveled for a year with a Christian singing group. Before coming back to Chicago to work full-time with Moody Radio in 1984, she was a youth director to a small inner city youth group in Kansas City, Kan.
Anita’s first role for Moody Radio was music director. Later, she became Friday Sing producer and Sunday Praise host. Hosting Midday Connection has been her favorite position. Anita is a sought after speaker for women’s conferences and retreats and loves meeting Midday listeners face to face. Anita’s first book, What Women Tell Me, released from Zondervan. Her second book, Shades of Mercy, co-authored with Caryn Rivadeneira, released from Moody Publishers. Anita, along with her husband, Mike, and son, John, live in the Chicago suburbs where you can often find Anita drinking a venti tea at her local Starbucks.
To learn more about Anita, her speaking schedule, and her blog please visit her website. Twitter: @anitalustrea
grew up listening to Moody Radio's flagship station, WMBI FM. As a kid, she was eager to grab the mic of the family's Wallensak tape machine to record make-believe news broadcasts and imaginary radio shows. Early tapes have her announcing the arrival of "the Beagles"-aka "the Beatles"-to America. A career in broadcasting appears to have been inevitable! In addition to her undergrad work in Broadcasting at Moody Bible Institute and Calvary Bible College, she is currently pursuing an MA in Intercultural Studies at Wheaton College Graduate School.
Melinda has served with Moody Radio since 1980 in various hosting capacities. Married with two young adult children and a long-haired Chihuahua/Min-Pin "blessing" named Pippa, Melinda loves reading, developing her creative interests and continuing to be a life-long learner. Twitter: @melindaschmidt Facebook: Melinda Correa Schmidt
Lori Neff is the senior producer, social media/event coordinator and occasional co-host for Midday Connection. Lori grew up in a small town in Ohio, spending more time outside in nature than inside. She is a graduate of Moody Bible Institute and is currently studying counseling and Spiritual Direction. Her interests include art (looking at it and creating it), music, literature, humanitarian aid efforts, gardening, coffee, traveling, thinking, learning and spending time with her husband and their four feisty cats.
To learn more about Lori and read her blog, please visit visit her website. Twitter: @loriatmidday
Caryn Rivadeneira is a part-time member of the Midday Connection team. About once a week, you can find her on-air or in the producer’s chair. In the other parts of her life, Caryn is a writer, speaker, worship-planner, mom and wife. Her newest book is Broke: What Financial Desperation Revealed about God’s Abundance (InterVarsity Press, 2014). Caryn lives with her husband, three kids and one rescued pit bull in the western suburbs of Chicago. To learn more about Caryn, please visit herwebsite. Twitter: @carynrivadeneir
Mark Breta is a singer, pianist, worship leader and radio producer and announcer. His hobbies include concert-going, cooking, comedy and watching football. He spoils his nieces and nephews. He dreams of homes in places like New York and London, but is proud to live in the city of Chicago. Follow Mark at his website.