Inspirational Speaker Press Kit

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Bank Roll Excerpt

Janet Elaine Smith at a booksigning with fellow Amberg WI author Sherrie Palm


Click on the cover to take a photographic trip with her

Share Janet Elaine Smith's journey to Venezuela and her time there as a missionary. See how God led her into the middle of the plains, how He answered prayers and provided for her needs, and how He even found a mate for her all because she loved to write.

Inspire your group now

Janet Elaine Smith is available during the summer and fall in northeast Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula (northwest area) of Michigan for either one session presentations or “mini-retreats” of (usually) 2 days. Below is the usual slate she uses for the mini-retreats, although they can be varied to suit each church/group needs and interests. Her message is inspirational, challenging, and humorous. She is also an accomplished pianist and often uses music in her programs.


Session 1 (morning, 1st day) -- Getting to know you (How she found God; He already knew where she was)

Session 2 (afternoon, 1st day) – Foreign missions (9 years in Venezuela)

Session 3 (evening, 1st day) – Home missions (35 years running a “Helps ministry” in the Red River Valley with her husband)

Session 4 (morning, 2nd day) – More foreign missions (The practical side of the gospel)

Session 5 (afternoon, 2nd day) – The written word (How God led her into writing, and took her first novel to a No. 1 bestseller on

Session 6 (evening, 3rd day) – God’s call to every person (Planting the seed right where you are) 


To schedule a conference or single session, contact Janet Elaine Smith

Address: W7969 Vine St.,

Amberg WI 54102

Phone: 715-759-5972


Website: and check on the “Inspirational Speaker Press Kit” page


Fee for presentation: expenses for gas, lodging and food (for speaker and her driver); right to sell her books; free-will offering if possible

Interfaith Bible Fellowship, Amberg WI, Dave Pompo, Pastor
Presbyterian Church, Amberg WI, Fred Wadsworth, Pastor
Presbyterian Church, Crivitz, WI,
Calvary Temple Assembly of God Church, Marinette, WI
Michael Fletcher, WRVM Radio, Suring WI
Don Shire, Wisconsin's "Musicianary,"
Immanuel Baptist Church, Wausaukee WI, Brian Sjoquist, Pastor
Ken Jones, Amberg WI, former pastor Interfaith Bible Fellowship
Cornerstone Assembly of God Church, Athelstane WI
Hal & Janice Locke, Amberg WI







Inspirational Speaking Press Release


Janet Elaine Smith met the Lord as a near teenager, and it was all because of lutefisk, lefse—and meatballs!  She soon volunteered to work with the American Sunday School Union in northern Minnesota when she was in high school. She spent her summers teaching Vacation Bible School and counseling at youth camps. Upon graduating from high school in Deer River, MN, she attended Bethany College of Missions in Minneapolis, MN, and after graduating there, she completed her missionary candidacy at WEC International in Ft. Washington, PA. Before leaving for her first term in Venezuela, she took a Summer Literature Workshop at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, IL. She was the youngest missionary to be accepted by WEC for foreign service, a claim that still belongs to her.


While on the mission field she got acquainted with Ivan Smith, and they were married in 1965. They have two sons and one daughter. They were based primarily in Acarigua, Estado Portuguesa, although Janet also worked in Barquisimeto at WEC’s bookstore, as well as in many small villages beyond Acarigua. Many Sundays found them going by jeep with a group of national believers on “roads” that were dried up river beds to help in the church services there.


Janet has many wonderful experiences where God intervened on their behalf during their time in Venezuela. In 1971 she was stricken with a case of hepatitis and tropical anemia. They returned to the US, and after praying about what their next step was to be in their ministry, Janet and Ivan (independently) saw an article in the Minneapolis Tribune about the plight of Mexican-American migrant workers in the Red River Valley and they both felt God’s leading to go there. They had no financial support, but they felt sure that God was in this move and that He would supply.


When they moved to East Grand Forks, MN, Janet began calling doctors, lawyers, judges, police, etc. to offer her services as a translator for any migrants they might have difficulties communicating with. In just two weeks, at midnight, the first call to action came when a doctor asked for them to come to the hospital to translate for a young migrant worker who had been in a serious accident. And the rest, as they say, is history.


A couple of years later Janet and Ivan moved across the Red River to Grand Forks ND. In talking to the phone company to get a new phone number assigned, the phone company asked if they would be willing to use the phone number 775-HELP, as they often got people who were looking for help of various kinds and they didn’t have a clearing-house agency where they could refer them. At that point the work of Mission Socorro (the name given to the charitable organization they had started) became much broader in its scope, dealing with people from all walks of life. The work with the migrants did not become any smaller, but by percentages, it was then about 10% of the total phone calls for help that they received.

In the next nearly forty years that Mission Socorro operated in the Red River Valley, literally thousands of people were helped. They dealt with suicide attempts, abuse cases, homelessness, evictions, job placement, run-away teenagers, supplying medications, even such mundane things as getting and delivering groceries for shut-ins.


During their time in Grand Forks Janet began writing the stories of their experiences in Venezuela so they would not forget them. She became enrapt in the whole process of writing, and felt God was leading her to share not only their life in non-fiction format, but also to reach “a wide audience” through fiction writing. She felt that God wanted her to write “non-preachy” books that would draw an audience from among the unchurched, yet her characters would have a strong faith that people could relate to. It took almost 25 years before her first novel was published (in June 2000), but she now has 20 published books, and she hears from readers on a daily basis who have been touched by her words.


While she was waiting for her books to be published, she kept writing, and she found a niche in magazines. She now has over 3000 magazine articles that have been published.


In doing research for some of her historical novels, she began to delve into genealogy, and she taught genealogy through Adult Education in Grand Forks for 16 years. She is working on updating a how-to book on genealogy for publication in 2009.


In 1995, Ivan had his leg amputated, and Janet became a full-time caretaker, along with running Mission Socorro and keeping active with her writing, which she says provided her with a “life-line” and “escape route” from the trials of daily life. In January, 2008, Ivan went home to be with the Lord, and Janet’s story of his passing is one that is sure to touch the hearts of all who hear it. She felt like God, through Ivan’s last words, gave her a little glimpse into heaven. If anyone has any question about the reality of heaven and what lies beyond, after Janet shares her experience, there will be no doubt remaining.


After Ivan’s passing, Janet moved next door to Amberg, WI. She has been warmly welcomed and embraced by the community. Having grown up in the middle of the Chippewa National Forest in northern Minnesota, Janet is thrilled to be back in "the woods."


Janet has done a great deal of public speaking, in colleges, to women’s groups, to writers’ groups, and to churches. She enjoys the interaction with others who have similar interests. She weaves her stories and challenges with inspiration, emotion and humor. You can specify the subjects you would like her to address, if you like, including: life on the mission field (either foreign or home); life as a Christian wife, mother and teacher; how to know God’s will for your life; genealogy; music; the challenges of being a minister’s wife; keeping your sanity as a caregiver; the life of a writer (both magazine and books); or almost anything else you would like her to share with you. God has granted her some amazing experiences that range from dining with presidents to eating goat, iguana or monkey meat with the poorest people of Venezuela. She is available for speaking engagements by contacting her at:


            Janet Elaine Smith

            W7969 Vine St.

            Amberg, WI 54102


            Phone: 715-759-5972 or



Janet reading from Old Habits Die Hard at a church presentation

Janet and other church members at a nursing home in Crivitz WI

Missionary experiences
(Venezuela, U.S. or both)
Facing challenges in loss
Reaching out to others--where you are
Writing (how-to's, her books or both)
Using music--even if you sing off-key
Marriage--with diamond rings
 or boxing gloves
Surviving natural disasters

Janet gladly gives credit where credit is due.
"I owe my success to God, and God alone."

Janet giving a "hand" to her supporters

Janet sharing the secrets to her success with an audience


A great book is like a great mind; it keeps on giving
over and over and over again!
Check Janet's books out here.