Service Schedule

Anna Trumbore Jones, Ph.D., Professor and Chair, Dept. of History, Lake Forest College
Mar
31
10:30 AM10:30

Anna Trumbore Jones, Ph.D., Professor and Chair, Dept. of History, Lake Forest College

Medieval Christian Views of Jews

Dr. Anna Jones (she now deletes the Trumbore for efficiency), Professor and Chair of the Department of History at Lake Forest College, will speak on the topic, Medieval Christian Views of Jews.  This talk will cover three key moments in the history of Jewish-Christian relations.  First, it will discuss the earliest centuries of Christianity, as Christian authors debated what their faith's proper relationship was to Judaism.  Second, it will cover the era of increasing (and increasingly violent) anti-Judaism in the later Middle Ages, as Jews were targeted due to trends in Christian pious practice and blamed for catastrophes such as the Black Death.  Finally, we will conclude with the Spanish Inquisition of the 15th century and the increased interest (on the part of Christians) in defining Jewishness in racial rather than religious terms.

Dr. Jones earned her B.A. at the University of Chicago and received her Ph.D. in History from Columbia University.  We have watched her ascend through the ranks at Lake Forest College, starting as Assistant Professor of History in the fall of 2003 and attaining her position of Professor in the fall of 2016.  In July 2019, she will take up the position of Associate Dean of the Faculty at Lake Forest.  Dr. Jones last spoke to us on April 9, 2017 on the topic The Problem of Wealth in Early Christianity.

Mikhail Antoshin once again will join us as guest pianist.

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Susan McCracken, Ph.D., Clinical Psychologist, Unitarian, Lay Military Ministry Program, Great Lakes Recruit Training Center
Mar
24
10:30 AM10:30

Susan McCracken, Ph.D., Clinical Psychologist, Unitarian, Lay Military Ministry Program, Great Lakes Recruit Training Center

Spirituality: A Developmental Perspective

Dr. Susan McCracken, Clinical Psychologist and Lay Military Minister at Great Lakes Recruit Training Center, will speak on the topic, Spirituality: A Developmental Perspective. In recent years, the focus in the health care field has shifted from a bio-psycho-social conceptualization of health and illness to a bio-psycho-social-spiritual perspective on health and wellness. Psychologists and other health care professionals have rediscovered the importance of incorporating spirituality as an element of practice and have shifted their focus from treating and curing to healing.  This brief presentation will provide a framework for understanding the way psychological and spiritual are interwoven with core developmental tasks through the lifespan. 

Susan McCracken has worked in both mental health and educational settings for over 40 years. She received her B.A. from Northwestern University and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from DePaul University. Her clinical work has been focused on the diagnosis and treatment of children and adolescents with particular expertise in anxiety disorders, eating disorders, stress-related illnesses, family systems and trauma-based disorders. She maintains a special interest in the relationship between spiritual development and mental health in adolescents and in healing through ceremony and ritual.  She became a life cycle celebrant in 2013, and started volunteering as a lay minister at Great Lakes Naval Recruit Training Center in 2018. She currently teaches at the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration.

Our pianist will once again be Andrew Blendermann.

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Jeanne Nolan, Owner/CEO of The Organic Gardener (local enterprise)
Mar
17
10:30 AM10:30

Jeanne Nolan, Owner/CEO of The Organic Gardener (local enterprise)

From the Ground Up: A Food Grower’s Education in Life, Love, and the Movement That’s Changing the Nation

Jeanne Nolan, Owner and CEO of the local enterprise The Organic Gardener, will speak on the topic of the title of her book, From the Ground Up: A Food Grower’s Education in Life, Love, and the Movement That’s Changing the Nation. When Jeanne Nolan, a teenager in search of a less materialistic, more authentic existence, left Chicago in 1987 to join a communal farm, she had no idea that her decades-long journey would lead her to the heart of a movement that is currently changing our nation’s relationship to food.  In her moving and inspiring talk, which combines her fascinating personal journey with the knowledge she gained along the way, Ms. Nolan will convey the importance of planting and eating organically—both for our health and for the environment—and will provide practical tips for growing our food. With the message that we can create utopias in our very own backyards and rooftops, her talk can inspire each of us to reassess our relationship to the food we eat.

Jeanne grew up in Winnetka and left in 1987 to live on a communal farm for the next 17 years. Upon her 2004 return to Chicago, she planted a vegetable garden in her parents’ backyard.  In 2005, a short year later, Jeanne began working with Chicago’s Green City Market. On their behalf, she designed, installed, and today maintains The Edible Gardens, a 5,000 square-foot educational children’s garden at the Lincoln Park Zoo Farm-in-the-Zoo. That same year, Jeanne founded The Organic Gardener, the ultimate expression of her life experience, beliefs, and skills.  She regularly teaches about growing food on WTTW’s Chicago Tonight, and has been featured in Chicago Tribune, Food & Wine, Woman’s Day, and other national publications.  Jeanne lives with her husband, Verd, and two daughters on a little farm in Northbrook.  She plays tennis in her spare time.

Out guest pianist will be Andrew Blendermann who subbed for Elif Allenfort occasionally.

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Laurel Harbridge-Yong, Ph.D., Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Political Science, Northwestern University
Mar
10
10:30 AM10:30

Laurel Harbridge-Yong, Ph.D., Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Political Science, Northwestern University

The Polarization of Politics in America: Empirical Patterns and Moral Challenges

Dr. Laurel Harbridge-Yong, Associate Professor in the Dept. of Political Science at Northwestern University, will speak on the topic, The Polarization of Politics in America: Empirical Patterns and Moral Challenges. In recent decades, our elected officials have grown further apart, and this ideological gap is further exacerbated by contentious partisan competition that provides few incentives to work together.  The same situation is true of voters, whose views of politics are increasingly shaped by partisan social identities and animosity toward the opposing party.  In this talk, Dr. Harbridge-Yong discusses the patterns surrounding polarization of our elected officials and the mass public, and what these changes mean for democratic norms (including compromise, trust in government, and perceived legitimacy of laws). She also considers how moral commitments impede compromise and civility in politics.

Dr. Harbridge-Yong’s primary areas of research and teaching include the United States Congress, public opinion, congressional elections, political parties, and public policy.  Her recent research explores the relationship between institutional arrangements, representation and policy formation in the context of increasing and intensifying partisan polarization. This includes a book on bipartisan agreement and how the structure of the roll call agenda has changed over time, affecting both issue attention and legislative responsiveness. Other research projects focus on the politics of the federal budget and on public preferences for bipartisan cooperation. She received her Ph.D. from Stanford University.

Mikhail Antoshin returns as our guest pianist.

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Nina Kraus, Ph.D., Professor of Neurobiology, Otolaryngology; Dept. of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Northwestern University
Mar
3
10:30 AM10:30

Nina Kraus, Ph.D., Professor of Neurobiology, Otolaryngology; Dept. of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Northwestern University

Head Banging - How Music and Concussions Impact Brain Health

Dr. Nina Kraus, Professor of Neurobiology, Otolaryngology in the Dept. of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Northwestern University, will speak on the topic, Head Banging – How Music and Concussions Impact Brain Health.  How do our experiences, such as learning how to play music and playing sports, affect our brain?  Although we are surrounded by sound all of the time, we rarely give much thought to this invisible yet powerful companion.  The auditory system is a uniquely complex sensory system and the ability to make sense of sound relies on exquisite precision by the brain.  Given the complexity and precision of the auditory system, accurate sound processing is particularly vulnerable to head injury.  On the other hand, its precision can be honed by activities that exercise the auditory brain such as playing a musical instrument.  We have discovered a way to objectively capture the imprint that sounds leave on our brains. Dr. Kraus will examine the promise of measuring sound prints in the brain to assess and manage sports-related concussions. She will discuss how music training is beneficial for the brain, strengthens our communication skills, and can inform health care, education, and social policy.

 Dr. Kraus is scientist, inventor, and amateur musician who uses hearing as a window into brain health.  She began her career measuring responses from single auditory neurons and was one of the first to show that the adult nervous system has the potential for reorganization with learning; these insights in basic biology galvanized her to investigate sound processing in the brain in humans.  Through a series of innovative studies involving thousands of research participants from birth to age 90, her research has found that our lives in sound, and our experiences, for better (musicians, bilinguals) and for worse (concussion, language disorders, aging), shape how our brain makes sense of the sounds we hear.  She received her Ph.D. from Northwestern.

Our guest musicians will be tenor Sam Grosby and his accompanist on the guitar, Adler Scheidt.

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Nicole Dreiske, Executive Director, International Children’s Media Center
Feb
10
10:30 AM10:30

Nicole Dreiske, Executive Director, International Children’s Media Center

The Upside of Digital Devices: How to Make Your Child More Screen Smart, Literate and Emotionally Intelligent

Nicole Dreiske, Executive Director of the International Children’s Media Center, will speak on the topic, The Upside of Digital Devices: How to Make Your Child More Screen Smart, Literate and Emotionally Intelligent.  Trying to police and protect a child from screen time is unquestionably one of the most confusing and frustrating responsibilities of good parenting.  It's a difficult job being a 'media monitor' all the time. Technology is at the center of everything we do―TVs, smart phones, computers, and tablets are no longer luxuries; they are necessities for navigating life today.  But technology can also be detrimental to growing minds, and parents must master the necessary skills to help their children not only survive in this digital world, but to actually thrive. 

Ms. Dreiske has been Executive Director of the ICMC since 2010.   As Executive Director, she develops practical pedagogies and best practices for optimizing screen use, laying the foundation for educational, empowering and humanizing interactions with technology. Some initiatives that address emerging social, educational and cultural needs include: Screen Smart; the ICFilmFest - Movies Make You Smarter; Global Girls and World Scene. In addition Ms. Dreiske is Associate Producer of Aguardiente Producciones, a children’s feature film set in Peru.  She is a graduate of Oberlin College and grew up in Winnetka.

Our guest pianist will be Andrew Lawrence

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Steve Asma, Ph.D., Professor, Dept. of Philosophy, Columbia College Chicago
Feb
3
10:30 AM10:30

Steve Asma, Ph.D., Professor, Dept. of Philosophy, Columbia College Chicago

Dr. Stephen Asma, Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Columbia College Chicago, will speak on the topic, Why We Need Religion.  How we feel is as vital to our survival as how we think.  This claim, based on the premise that emotions are largely adaptive, serves as the organizing theme of his new book Why We Need Religion.  Dr. Asma argues that, like art, religion has direct access to our emotional lives in ways that science does not.  Yes, science can give us emotional feelings of wonder and the sublime--we can feel the sacred depths of nature--but there are many forms of human suffering and vulnerability that are beyond the reach of help from science.  Different emotional stresses require different kinds of rescue.  Unlike secular authors who praise religion's ethical and civilizing function, Asma argues that its core value lies in its emotionally therapeutic power.

Asma is the author of eleven books, includingThe Evolution of Imagination (University of Chicago Press, 2017), The Evolution of Emotion: Affective Roots of Culture and Cognition with Rami Gabriel (Harvard University Press, forthcoming), On Monsters: an Unnatural History of Our Worst Fears (Oxford University Press), and The Gods Drink Whiskey(HarperOne).  He writes regularly for the New York Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education,Skeptic magazine, and Aeon.  Asma has been an invited lecturer at Harvard University, Brown University, the Field Museum, the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, University of Macau, Aarhus University Denmark, and many more.  He recently returned from Myanmar.

 We are very pleased to have Hazel Friedman, an accomplished student pianist living in Chicago as a third year piano performance major at Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music.  In 2014, Hazel was the first place winner of the San Diego Symphony’s “Hot Shot” Concerto Competition and subsequently soloed with the San Diego Symphony. Recent performances include solo recitals in La Jolla, California and Baltimore, Maryland, and solo and collaborative recitals in Copenhagen, Denmark. She has worked and performed for Unitarian church services over the past seven years, and is very excited to be performing for us today.

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Ward Wilson, Senior Fellow at the Federation of American Scientists
Jan
27
10:30 AM10:30

Ward Wilson, Senior Fellow at the Federation of American Scientists

Hope in the Nuclear Age: The Realist Case for Eliminating Nuclear Weapons

About the speaker: Ward Wilson is an award-winning author. His book, Five Myths About Nuclear Weapons, was endorsed by two Pulitzer-Prize-winning historians of nuclear weapons, recommended by four star generals, praised by a former head of state and Nobel Peace Prize winner, and described as “brilliant, original, and important.” He has been published in anti-nuclear journals like The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and Nonproliferation Review, military journals likeJoint Force Quarterly and Revue de Défense Nationale, as well as in The Chicago Tribune, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and others.  He has spoken in 23 countries on six continents, at the Pentagon, the French National Assembly, the United Nations, the Scottish National Parliament, the U.S. State Department, Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, Georgetown, and the Sorbonne and others.

Ward Wilson, Senior Fellow at the Washington D.C. Think Tank of the Federation of American Scientists, will speak on the topic of Hope in the Nuclear Age: The Realist Case for Eliminating Nuclear Weapons.  Experts and government officials have told us for years that there’s nothing we can do about nuclear weapons. They’re essential, they say; we just have to live with them. Now Mr. Wilson presents a new, realist take on the need for eliminating nuclear weapons.  Using groundbreaking analysis and innovative arguments, he debunks the Cold War mindset that experts and government officials are locked into.  There is a pragmatic, prudent approach to eliminating nuclear weapons. And that means that there is also hope.

Our guest musician will again be Chelsea French playing the trombone.

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Stephanie Caparelli, J.D., Lecturer in Politics with a Specialization in Race and Criminal Justice
Jan
20
10:30 AM10:30

Stephanie Caparelli, J.D., Lecturer in Politics with a Specialization in Race and Criminal Justice

Confessing to a Crime You Didn’t Commit: A Case Study Analysis in Interrogations and False Confession

Stephanie Caparelli, J.D., Lecturer in Politics with a Specialization in Race and Criminal Justice at Lake Forest College, will speak on the topic, Confessing to A Crime You Didn’t Commit: A Case Study Analysis in Interrogations and False Confession.  When asked whether they could envision a circumstance under which they might confess to a crime they didn't commit, most people respond with a confident and resounding "no." The prospect is difficult to fathom, which is why juries are often remiss when they render guilty verdicts where the defendant has confessed to a crime.  A confession is often held up to be the ultimate piece of inculpatory evidence.  However, the Innocence Project finds that more than 1 out of 4 wrongfully convicted persons ultimately exonerated by DNA evidence falsely confessed to the crime for which they were charged.  We will explore this phenomenon using the 1992 Waukegan murder of Holly Staker and the false confession of Juan Rivera.  Juan's false confession led to three separate juries rendering a guilty verdict for him, resulting in Juan spending 19 years in the Department of Corrections before finally being exonerated.

Stephanie Caparelli is a graduate of the Chicago-Kent College of Law, where she interned at the Lake County Juvenile Justice Division of the Lake County Public Defender as well as the Felony Trials Division of the Cook County Public Defender.  She practiced law as a trial lawyer in the Lake County Public Defender's Office before accepting a position at her alma mater, Lake Forest College, where she teaches courses on trial law, criminal procedure, Chicago criminal cases, and argument and rhetoric in law.

Guest musician: Chelsea French, Music Institute of Chicago and North Central College, and her colleague, Tom Stark. 

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Lina Sergie Attar, Co-Founder/CEO, Karam Foundation
Jan
13
10:30 AM10:30

Lina Sergie Attar, Co-Founder/CEO, Karam Foundation

Karam Foundation: Building a Better Future for Syria

About the speaker:  Lina Sergie Attar is founder and CEO of Karam Foundation.  She is a Syrian-American architect and writer from Aleppo. Her articles and essays have been published in the New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Foreign Policy, Politico, The Atlantic and the BBC and has spoken about the Syrian humanitarian crisis at schools, universities, and institutions across the United States.  She is a co-founder of the How Many More, serves as Chair of the Board of Directors of The Syria Campaign, and is a non-resident fellow at New America.  Karam Foundation is a non-profit organization on a mission to build a better future for Syria by developing innovative education programs for Syrian refugee youth, distributing aid to Syrian families, and funding sustainable development projects initiated by Syrians for Syrians.

Ms. Lina Sergi Attar, Co-Founder and CEO of Karam Foundation, will speak on the topic, Karam Foundation: Building a Better Future for Syria.  How do we imagine a vibrant future for Syrians after the mass devastation and trauma they have endured?  How can we rebuild agency and confidence for marginalized refugee communities?  What if there was a space created for the most vulnerable of refugees — the youth — where cutting-edge technology, social camaraderie, and expert mentors were available?  In this talk, Ms. Attar will map out an alternative vision for Syrian refugee youth that is a world away from war and despair.  At her team's Karam Houses in Turkey, hundreds of Syrian teens are building their ideas while gaining world-class critical and creative thinking skills. They are on pathways of future success and leadership for their communities and beyond.

Musical guest: Mikhail Antoshin of The Internationals and his daughter, Chanel, on the flute.

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Jabbar Bennett, Ph.D., Associate Provost and Chief Diversity Officer, Northwestern University, Associate Professor of Medicine, Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine
Jan
6
10:30 AM10:30

Jabbar Bennett, Ph.D., Associate Provost and Chief Diversity Officer, Northwestern University, Associate Professor of Medicine, Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine

Advancing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Higher Education

About the speaker: Dr. Bennett is an associate professor of medicine at Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine. Prior to joining Northwestern, he served as associate dean of the Graduate School, associate dean for diversity in the Division of Biology and Medicine, and clinical assistant professor of medicine at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Before his appointment at Brown, he served on the faculty at Harvard Medical School and directed the Office for Multicultural Faculty Careers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, one of Harvard Medical School’s teaching affiliates. Dr. Bennett received his BS in biology and minor in Spanish from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical (A&T) State University, and his PhD in biomedical sciences from Meharry Medical College (Nashville).

Dr. Jabbar Bennett, Associate Provost and Chief Diversity Officer at Northwestern University, will speak on the topic,Advancing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Higher Education.  Advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in higher education is a top priority for many colleges and universities.  Acknowledging the evolution of our nation’s demographics, as well as those of student, faculty and staff populations is critical.  Ensuring that everyone is treated fairly and has access to the same resources and opportunities is imperative and often requires crucial conversations and difficult decisions to be made.  Preparing institutions to openly welcome, embrace and respect diverse individuals, their backgrounds, beliefs, expectations and practices continues to challenge traditional structures and systems within higher education.

Musical guest: Mikhail Antoshin of The Internationals and his daughter, Chanel, on the flute.

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Michael Nerheim, Lake County States Attorney
Dec
2
10:30 AM10:30

Michael Nerheim, Lake County States Attorney

A Moral Fight Against Opioids in Our Backyard

About the speaker: As Lake County State’s Attorney, Mr. Nerheim oversees an office of 144 attorneys, investigators, victim coordinators, paralegals, and support staff, plus two certified comfort dogs and a corps of volunteers. He began his legal career in 1999 as an Assistant State’s Attorney. He has extensive experience working in all criminal divisions of the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office, handling every type of case including traffic, misdemeanor, domestic violence, criminal sexual assault, drug trafficking, gang-related crimes, crimes against children and the elderly, official misconduct, and murder. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice and Psychology from Winona State University in Winona, Minnesota and earned his Juris Doctor, Cum Laude, from The John Marshall Law School in Chicago.  

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David Victorson, Ph.D., Assoc. Prof. Medical School Sciences, Feinberg School of Medicine, Director of the Consciousness in Health Research Lab
Nov
25
10:30 AM10:30

David Victorson, Ph.D., Assoc. Prof. Medical School Sciences, Feinberg School of Medicine, Director of the Consciousness in Health Research Lab

Does Science Back up Positive Benefits of Both Meditative Mindfulness and Yoga? 

About the Speaker: Dr. David Victorson is Associate Professor of Medical School Sciences at the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern, and Director of the Consciousness in Health Research Lab.  Victorson, as a licensed health psychologist, researches ways to reduce symptoms of suffering within the context of illness and disease, but also finds ways to promote and accelerate healthy lives and wellness, quality of life, meaning and purpose, and overall human flourishing.  He is on the team-science faculty track at Northwestern, and fully believes in the importance of trans-disciplinary collaboration with academic and community partners, often noting that while research is "me-search," important discoveries and contributions don't occur until research is "we-search."  He received his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Miami.

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Howard Learner, J.D. Harvard University, President and Executive Director, Environmental Law and Policy Center
Nov
18
10:30 AM10:30

Howard Learner, J.D. Harvard University, President and Executive Director, Environmental Law and Policy Center

Protecting the Midwest’s Environment and Natural Heritage

About the Speaker: Howard Learner is President and Executive Director of the Environmental Law and Policy Center.  The Environmental Law and Policy Center is the Midwest’s premier public interest environmental legal advocacy and eco-business innovation organization.  In addition to his positions at the Law and Policy Center, Mr. Learner is an (Adjunct) Professor at the University of Michigan Law School and at Northwestern University Law School, where he teaches advanced seminars in energy and environmental and clean energy law, climate change policy and sustainable development law.  He received his J.D. from Harvard Law School (1980) and B.A. from the University of Michigan (1976).

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Lan Nguyen Chaplin, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Marketing, U. of I., Chicago
Nov
11
10:30 AM10:30

Lan Nguyen Chaplin, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Marketing, U. of I., Chicago

Ethical and Moral Aspects of Childhood Materialism

About the Speaker: Dr. Lan Nguyen Chaplin is Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Illinois, Chicago.  She conducts research in the areas of children’s social-cognitive development, happiness, branding, and consumer behavior.  Dr. Chaplin recently received the Journal of Consumer Research Best Article of the Year Award for her paper titled, “Material parenting: How the use of goods in parenting fosters materialism in the next generation.”  Her research has been covered by TIME, Forbes, The New York Times, Fortune, and ABC News Radio, CBS News, The Atlantic, Washington Times, Boston Globe, Yahoo! Finance, Yahoo! Parenting, Scientific American, Smithsonian Magazine, New York Magazine, Popular Science, Psychology Today, Spotify, and Glamour.  She received her Ph.D. in Business Administration from the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota.

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Robert Hariman, Ph.D., Professor of Rhetoric and Public Culture, Department of Communication Studies, Northwestern University
Nov
4
10:30 AM10:30

Robert Hariman, Ph.D., Professor of Rhetoric and Public Culture, Department of Communication Studies, Northwestern University

A Time of Social Catastrophes? Living with Radical Change

*This Sunday we will meet at Mallinckrodt Center, 1041 Ridge Rd., Wilmette

About the speaker:

Dr. Robert Hariman, Professor of Rhetoric and Public Culture, Dept. of Communication Studies, Northwestern University, is the author of Political Style: The Artistry of Power and of two co-authored books on photojournalism: No Caption Needed: Iconic Photographs, Public Culture, and Liberal Democracy, and most recently, The Public Image: Photography and Civic Spectatorship.  His other publications include edited volumes on popular trials, political judgment, political realism, and the texture of political action, as well as journal articles on parody, allegory, banality, and other modes of public address.  His work has been translated into French and Chinese.  Hariman posts periodically at nocaptionneeded.com, his co-authored blog on photojournalism, politics, and culture.  He received his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.

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Charles Strain, Ph.D., Professor, Religious Studies, Peace, Justice and Conflict Studies, DePaul University
Oct
28
10:30 AM10:30

Charles Strain, Ph.D., Professor, Religious Studies, Peace, Justice and Conflict Studies, DePaul University

Buddha Enters the Marketplace: The Birth, Flowering and Global Reach of Engaged Buddhism

*This Sunday we will meet at Mallinckrodt Center, 1041 Ridge Rd., Wilmette

About the speaker: Dr. Charles Strain, Professor, Religious Studies, Peace, Justice and Conflict Studies, DePaul University, teaches in the areas of Liberation Theology, Socially Engaged Buddhism and their contributions to ethics of peace and justice. Strain also teaches in the Peace, Justice and Conflict Studies program. His recent book, The Prophet and the Bodhisattva: Daniel Berrigan, Thich Nhat Hanh and the Ethics of Peace and Justice (2014), received the outstanding 2016 book of the year award chosen by the Society for Buddhist Christian Studies. In 2017, Strain co-authored (with Elizabeth Collier) Global Migration: What is Happening, Why, and a Just Response. Strain is an avid swimmer and enjoys mountain hiking.

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Grace Wolf-Chase, Ph.D., Astronomer, Adler Planetarium
Oct
21
10:30 AM10:30

Grace Wolf-Chase, Ph.D., Astronomer, Adler Planetarium

The Interactive Cosmos: Star Formation, an Evolving Web of Relationships

About the Speaker: Dr. Grace Wolf-Chase is Astronomer at Adler Planetarium, an Associate at the University of Chicago, an Affiliated Faculty member of the Zygon Center for Religion Science, and Vice President of the Center for Advanced Study in Religion and Science (CASIRAS).  Her position at the Adler integrates academic research in her field of expertise (star formation) with public education, particularly through engaging people around the world in “citizen science”.  Wolf-Chase holds a Bachelor’s degree in Physics from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in Astronomy from the University of Arizona. A life-long Lutheran, she resides with her spouse in Naperville, IL and has three adult children in college.


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Nancy Rotering, J.D. Mayor of Highland Park
Oct
14
10:30 AM10:30

Nancy Rotering, J.D. Mayor of Highland Park

A Conversation about Legislation to Ban Civilian High Powered Weaponry

Nancy Rotering is Mayor of Highland Park. As an attorney, Ms. Rotering joined McDermott Will & Emery working on health care matters. In 2008, she shifted her focus to government work and served as a Legislative Aide to State Representative Karen May.  Rotering is the first female mayor of Highland Park, IL.  She was elected in April 2011 and re-elected in 2015.  A two-term mayor, she shook up City Hall with a major reform of city government that resulted in transparency, accessibility, collaboration and ethical accountability.  She led the charge to pass one of the nation’s only local assault weapons bans. Nancy successfully fought the NRA all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.  She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics at Stanford University, an MBA at Northwestern University and a law degree at the University of Chicago. She and her husband Rob have four sons.

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John Levine, Board Member, BackYard Nature Center
Oct
7
10:30 AM10:30

John Levine, Board Member, BackYard Nature Center

Connecting with the Wonders of Nature

About BackYard Nature Center: When we think of wonders of nature, at first blush, a beautiful sunset might come to mind with its myriad shades of oranges and reds.  With BackYard Nature Center (BYNC), we discover a sense of exhilaration, magic and mystery in nature.  To introduce children to the wonders of nature and get them off their screens, BYNC connects with teachers, school officials, New Trier Township, Winnetka Park District, Forest Preserves of Cook County, The Alliance for Early Childhood, Chicago Wilderness friends, service-minded and faith-based organizations, volunteers and contributors.  BYNC brings to the fore the opportunities for children's unstructured play in nature.

About the Speaker: John Levine is involved in both restoration and education initiatives for BYNC. His focus on the board is in the areas of marketing, resource development, and planning. A passionate advocate for nature, John has volunteered with such organizations as The Nature Conservancy, World Wildlife Fund, and Lincoln Park Zoo. He brings BYNC marketing and business management skills, having held leadership positions in the consumer products industry and founded a consulting practice in marketing and innovation. He also writes novels for children. John has a BA in Economics from the University of Michigan and an MBA in Marketing from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. He lives in Northfield.

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Ahmad Sadri, Ph.D., Professor of Sociology and Islamic World Studies, Lake Forest College
Sep
23
10:30 AM10:30

Ahmad Sadri, Ph.D., Professor of Sociology and Islamic World Studies, Lake Forest College

The Rise of Fundamentalism and the Decline of Reform Thought-Judaism, Christianity and Islam

About the Speaker: Dr. Ahmad Sadri, Professor of Sociology and Islamic World Studies at Lake Forest College, received his B.A. and M.A. degrees at the University of Tehran and his Ph.D. from the New School for Social Research.  He is the author and editor of numerous books including Max Weber’s Sociology of Intellectuals and Reason Freedom and Democracy in Islam, as well as more than one hundred articles.  He wrote a column for Daily Starof Lebanon, and has appeared on the BBC, Al Jazeera, and National Public Radio.   In recent years Sadri wrote a weekly column for Etemad-e Melli, and Irandokht, reformist newspapers in Iran that have since been closed down.   His most recent translation of the Epic of the Persian Kings has sold 15,000 copies and has been turned into a shadow play.

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