Kendra and John Smiley are popular speakers and authors, reaching out to families across the nation from their farm in central Illinois. They have co-authored three books for parents – Journey of a Strong-Willed Child, Be the Parent, and Do Your Kids a Favor. Love Your Spouse. In addition they have a monthly column, Home Front, in Prairie Farmer magazine.
John took over the family farming operation in 2002. Earlier in his career he taught math and coached at the high school level. He was also a pilot in the United States Air Force and Air Force Reserves, flying a KC-135 for 30 years. John retired as Colonel Smiley, the Vice-Wing Commander of Grissom Air Reserve Base in Indiana.
Kendra, the 2001 Illinois Mother of the Year, hosts a daily radio show, Live Life Intentionally, heard coast to coast on over 350 stations and featuring John as a weekly guest. She is also John’s “Hired Man.” Growing up with little to no knowledge about agriculture, this role has been one of her toughest ones yet. Kendra likes to say that there are two things wrong with her title of “Hired Man” – gender and compensation. ☺
They are the parents of three married sons and have 10 grandchildren ages 9 and younger.
“The International Flying Farmers were honored to have Kendra Smiley as one of their featured speakers at their annual convention in Springfield, Illinois in July of 2016. Kendra’s background as a farm wife and her husband being a retired Air Force officer that had a pilot’s license she fit right in. Our group enjoyed her enthusiasm and had us laughing immediately. Her message was entertaining, inspirational and spoken straight from the heart. We could personally relate to her message. Kendra is a true light of God’s love for us and as she speaks you feel it in your heart. We are so grateful to have found her to be a part of our convention. We left that evening feeling renewed so thank you Kendra!”
Zelda Thorp Lewis