Fall 2010

Wednesday, Sept. 1
4:30-6:30 pm
$5 (new and prospective members FREE!)
Location: Wellshire Presbyterian Church, 2999 S. Colorado Blvd.

This is your chance to get together informally with course facilitators and fellow members of the Academy, to renew connections, pick up handouts and find out about any changes in the course schedules.  Bring a friend or neighbor to find out what the Academy is all about, too. But let them know that many of the courses may already be filled by September 7.


Presenters: Various Opera Colorado Staff & Artists
9 Tuesdays, Sept. 14—Nov. 9
10 am—12 noon
Lecture, video, performance

You won’t want to miss this rare opportunity to get the inside story from the artistic and professional leadership of Opera Colorado about what it takes to get an opera ready for opening night.  Brad Trexel, director of artistic planning, joins staffers and performers from Opera Colorado to explain and demonstrate how a season’s program is created and cast and how a work is staged.  Cherity Koepke, director of education and community programs, will lead a discussion panel and direct a performance (at the Academy) of a one-act version of Romeo and Juliet set to the sumptuous music of Charles Gounod.  Director of CU opera, Leigh Holman, and her students will explain how young singers train for a career in opera.  In three separate lectures, Greg Carpenter, general director of Opera Colorado, provides insights into the three popular works that make up the company’s 2010-11 season: Puccini’s romantic La Bohème; Dvořák’s tragic Rusalka; and Rossini’s version of the Cinderella-story, La Cenerentola.  Complete DVD showings of historic performances of the three featured operas round out the final three weeks of the course.  They are sure to whet your appetite for the stage versions scheduled at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House this season.  For group tickets to the operas, tear off the bottom of the separate flyer and include with your registration form.

Both Music & Dance
10 Wednesdays, Sept. 15— Nov. 17
1:30-3:30 pm
$55 (save $10)
Instructor: Robin McNeil
7 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Nov. 17 (skip Sept. 29—Oct. 13 for the Dance portion)
1:30-3:30 pm
Lecture, CD’s
Instructors: Colorado Ballet staff & performers
3 Wednesdays, Sept. 29—Oct. 13
1:30-3:30 pm
$20 (nonmembers $35)
Lecture, video, performance

You can sign up for either or both parts of this two-part course featuring the basics of both music and dance in the art of ballet.

Music: The seven-week music segment features composers of ballet music from the late Italian Renaissance to the present, including Monteverdi, Gluck, Benoist, Ibert, Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, Martinů, and Prokofiev through John Cage.  You’ll learn how to tell baroque from romantic, classical from neoclassical, modern from contemporary, and find out why a ballet, unlike most other forms of music, is normally composed for a specific company or choreographer. You’ll also find out who wrote a 20th century ballet for percussion only—and why.

Dance: The three-week dance portion offers a who’s who of ballet, with video and discussion of historically important performances and personalities from Louis XIV to the present, plus a primer on dance techniques, with demonstrations of moves and discussions of the choreographic process, dance notation and body memory. We’ll also visit the Colorado Ballet studios to see Dracula in rehearsal and hear artistic director Gil Boggs recount his professional experiences with contemporary dance pioneers like the late Merce Cunningham.

Instructors: Concert pianist Robin McNeil taught at the University of Illinois and the University of South Dakota, in addition to serving as executive director of the Denver Philharmonic Orchestra.  Anne O’Connor, Colorado Ballet’s Education Director, will present and organize the ballet portion of this course.

Facilitator: David Wallack
8 Tuesdays, Sept. 14—Nov. 9 (skip Oct. 19)
10 am—12 noon
Videos, group examination of art

If you love the French impressionists (and who doesn’t?), you’ll love this course.  Here’s your chance to take a closer look at some of the artists who ignited one of the most exciting artistic revolutions in history. Lectures serve up a savory stew of cultural and political history, biography, and visual treasures to focus on the lives and careers of Degas, Caillebotte, Mary Cassatt, Monet, Renoir, Van Gogh, Gauguin, and Toulouse-Lautrec. You’ll see how this close-knit group of artists responded to the poet and critic Baudelaire’s call for paintings of “modern life” during a period rife with radical social and intellectual change.  One session features a virtual tour of the Impressionism-rich Barnes collection (Philadelphia) with Sally Kneser.

Recommended reading: Françoise Bayle, A Fuller Understanding of the Paintings at Orsay (Artlys, 200l); Robert L. Herbert, Impressionism (Yale Univ. Press, 1988).

Facilitator: Despite his busy medical practice, David Wallack continues researching art history, his undergraduate major at Columbia College. He indulges his love for art at museums across the US and around the world when he isn’t pursuing his other lifelong fixation—baseball.

The Asian Collection
Coordinators: Joanne Mendes, Marty Corren
6 Wednesdays, Oct. 13—Nov. 17
1:30-3:30 pm
$60 (includes tour fees & printed materials)
Parking additional
Tours at the Denver Art Museum

Some of the Denver Art Museum’s greatest treasures are featured in our fourth “DAM Great Art” series, focusing this time on ancient and modern art from China, India, Japan, Tibet, and Korea. You’ll discover the difference between Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, and, during our concluding workshop, you’ll get up close and personal with the finer points of the Japanese tea ceremony and the arts of Ikebana and Haiku. You’ll learn about Chinese bronze vessels and the elaborately embroidered robes of the Qing dynasty court. Expert docents walk us through the intricacies of Samurai armor, masks, and swords; the technical and esthetic glories of Japanese lacquer boxes; and one of the finest collections of East Asian bamboo art in the world. They’ll initiate you into the meaning of the Tibetan sand mandala created by Tibetan monks at the museum in 1996, one of very few ever preserved for permanent viewing. And learning about the complex details of a 12th century bronze dancing Shiva will set the stage for a tour of the museum’s extensive holdings in art from India. Participants must be (or become) DAM members.

Coordinators: Longtime art enthusiast Joanne Mendes has recently retired from a career spent organizing programs in art history in London and at the Denver Art Museum. The Academy’s liaison with the Denver Art Museum, Marty Corren joined the museum as a volunteer in 2006 and serves as an outstanding and popular docent.   She recently completed training on the Asian art collection.

Facilitator: Lorraine Sherry
5 Thursdays, Oct. 21—Nov. 18
1:30-3:30 pm
Lecture, images, videos, Q&A

In this sequel to the 2009 course we turn to tropical and specialty gardens, American gardens, Southwestern garden design, public parks and nature preserves. We’ll see how gardens everywhere reflect the spirit of their time and place, and, with Audrey Hepburn as our guide, we’ll visit some sensational gardens on video. Gardens have been used to create beauty, to display wealth, to symbolize religious belief, to contrast wilderness and order, to turn abstract fantasy into solid form, to display and conserve rare plants, and to provide pleasure and enjoyment.  Which styles do you enjoy the most?  If you missed the earlier course, you’ll find all the background information you’ll need about world garden history and styles on the class website.

Recommended reading: Van Zuylen, G., The Garden: Visions of Paradise (Thames & Hudson, 1995) and Adams, W.H., Gardens through History (Abbeville Press, 1991).

Highly recommended viewing: Participants should have access to a computer in order to view the extensive images and virtual tours of gardens: http://home.comcast.net/~lorraine.sherry/gardens/

Facilitator: Lorraine Sherry’s academic and professional training and experience has been in science, technology and research/evaluation of instructional technology. With a lifelong passion for gardening, she pursued her horticultural education through CSU’s Colorado Master Gardener program and international travels that convinced her that garden design is a fine art.

Explore and Create
Facilitator:  Sharon Rouse
6 Tuesdays, Sept. 14—Oct. 26 (no class Oct. 12)
9:30 am—12 noon

Watercolor is a beguiling and exciting medium with a character all its own. Even if you’ve never handled a brush before, you’ll enjoy exploring watercolor’s idiosyncrasies while learning how to deal confidently with washes, glazes, and color mixing. Discover your hidden potential as you unleash the power of this demanding but rewarding medium. Beginners will practice specific exercises creating a variety of results and experienced artists may work on individual projects with mentoring. After you’ve registered, we’ll send a list of materials you’ll need. Limited to 20. Note the early start time.

Instructor: Sharon Rouse’s skills as an experienced teacher of adult classes and workshops in a museum setting serve her well as a supervisor for student-teachers of art at Metro. Her work appears in various group shows and private collections.


Hercule Poirot Sampler
Facilitator: Bill Dorn
9 Tuesdays, Sept. 14—Nov. 9
1:30-3:30 pm
Discussion, viewing videos

Many of the novels of Dame Agatha Christie, the most prolific mystery writer of all time, center on the activities of the fictional Belgian detective M. Hercule Poirot, who may be even better known than her amateur English sleuth Miss Jane Marple. This course, like the previous one dealing with the Marple character, focuses on four Poirot novels that have been made into movies or television shows: Murder on the Orient Express, The ABC Murders, Death on the Nile, and Lord Edgware Dies.  We’ll read the books and view two film or TV versions of each one with an eye to answering such questions as how and why the videos differ so much from the original novels and which portrayals are preferable. You’ll find the discussions fun whether you’re a mystery aficionado or just getting acquainted with the genre.

Required reading: Any book or books containing these mysteries: The ABC Murders, Death on the Nile, Lord Edgware Dies, and Murder on the Orient Express.

Facilitator: A retired DU mathematics professor, Bill Dorn has taught numerous courses on classic fictional detectives and is the author of five books on Sherlock Holmes.  Check out his web site: http://web.me.com/billdorn/Hercule_Poirot_Sampler/WELCOME_PAGE.html.

New Series
Facilitator: Paulette Wasserstein
6 Wednesdays, Sept. 29—Nov. 10 (skip Nov. 3)
1:30—3:30 pm

This course features all new stories!  If you love great literature, you have found the right course, now in its third series (Best American Short Stories, 2008).  The class examines one or two memorable stories each week, teasing out the meanings of each story and leaving you with a greater appreciation of the short story as an art form.  Because short stories are so concentrated, each one will evoke questions and ambiguities to challenge your interpretation skills and offer new insights to universal experiences.

Required reading:  Salman Rushdie, ed., Best American Short Stories, 2008 (Mariner Books, 2008).

Discussion Leader: Paulette Wasserstein, career teacher of English and education consultant, loves the exchange of ideas and sharing “a good read.”

Facilitator: Rebecca Gorman
4 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Oct. 13 (skip Sept. 29)
1:30-3:30 pm
Lecture, discussion

“The remarkable thing about Shakespeare,” the poet Robert Graves once observed, “is that he really is very good—in spite of all the people who say he is very good.” Find out why Shakespeare’s plays are for everyone, not just cultural snobs. After a quick warm-up with everybody’s favorite star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet, we’ll look at three of the Bard’s best-known plays—the comedy Midsummer Night’s Dream, the tragedy Hamlet, and Henry V, tops among history plays—all with an eye to understanding why these 400-year-old tales are still as compelling, as moving and entertaining, as the day they were first performed.  We’ll see why Shakespeare refuses to lie down and die, but instead remains a glorious force of nature—in short, a master storyteller.

Facilitator: Rebecca Gorman is in her seventh year as a professor of English at Metro State, where she teaches courses in drama, writing, and cinema studies.

Instructor: Len Marino
8 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Nov. 3
10 am—12 noon
$60 (includes notebook with course material)
Lecture, videos
From stunts and special effects to studios and the star system, this new course takes a look at Hollywood’s inner workings—the techniques, players, and issues that make the movies what they are. With film clips, interviews, and even a few surprises, we’ll explore the worlds of editing and cinematography, get acquainted with great directors and their work, and plumb the legacies of the Warner Brothers and James Bond. We’ll also probe the politics of the film world, with special attention to the McCarthy era blacklist and the hurdles faced by African-Americans on the road to stardom and power.

Recommended reading: Karney, Robyn, Cinema, Year by Year (Dorling Kindersley Publishers Ltd, 2001) and anything by Leonard Maltin.

Instructor: Now retired from a career in advertising and marketing, Len Marino has been in love with the movies since he was five.

New Selections
Leader: Laura Rubin
8 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Nov. 4
1:30—3:30 pm
Reading plays aloud

Discover the fun of reading plays aloud with a group. We’ll be spotlighting one-act plays this time around, including Bertolt Brecht’s very short Jewish Wife, a six-pager, and two early one-acts by Tennessee Williams that pay homage to his literary idol, D. H. Lawrence: Adam and Eve on a Ferry and I Rise in Flame, Cried the Phoenix. We’ll also read black playwright Jeff Stetson’s longer, more provocative drama, Fathers and Other Strangers, and two early efforts by Neil Simon (Come Blow Your Horn) and George Bernard Shaw (The Devil’s Disciple). You’ll get a copy of the play on the day it’s scheduled to be read, and parts will be assigned at random. Seated around the table, you can opt to get into character or play it straight. The pleasure of the experience comes from the playwright’s skill and the fact that all participants have copies they can read—hearing problems are actually no problem. Limited to 12.

Leader: Laura Rubin is a retired public school speech therapist, who has facilitated play reading groups for seven years in Jacksonville, Florida and Denver. She earned a B.A. and M.A. in speech therapy.

Challenging Your Muse
Facilitator: Barb Lundy
2 Thursdays, Nov. 11—Nov. 18
10 am—12 noon and 1—3 pm
Writing workshop with two all-day sessions

Here’s your chance to get tips from a practicing poet about how to banish your writer’s block. Find out how the use of metaphor can guide you to new insights, how harmony and dissonance enhance the emotional power of a poem, and how symbols resonate in the subconscious. Learn how sensory images, repetition, and internal rhyme can transform a first draft into a memorable final read. And find out how and where to get your poetry published, as well as what to look for in an effective support group.  Note: Class meets am and pm.

Recommended reading: Moustake, Nikki, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Writing Poetry (Alpha, 2001) and Behen, Robin, The Practice of Poetry (Harper Paperbacks, 1992).

Facilitator: Barb Lundy has published over 100 poems and in 2005 was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in poetry.  She enjoys sharing her love of the craft through teaching, readings, and as a member of three writing groups.

Facilitator: Kathy Boyer
5 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Oct. 14
10 am—12 noon

Whether you’re nineteen or ninety, you have stories to tell and wisdom to share. Learn how to begin compiling a collection of your life experiences to share with friends and family—or simply to read later at leisure.  Spark your memory with innovative and engaging activities designed to bring to mind long-forgotten scenes from your past and to help you start getting them down on paper. Pick up your pen and open a new chapter on your life in the supportive atmosphere of this popular class. Limited to 14 participants.

Facilitator: Kathy Boyer, a retired teacher, has conducted Life Stories workshops for libraries, summer camps, churches, community centers, and the Academy. She also helps individuals record their memories electronically.

Memoir Writing
Facilitator: Patricia Cox
8 Tuesdays, Sept. 14—Nov. 2
1:30-3:30 pm
Interactive workshop environment

“Anyone who physically and emotionally outlasts childhood has something to write about forever,” offers author Lou Willett Stanek. You’ll agree once you discover the rich vein of topics in your past and experience the joy of preserving these treasured tales. We’ll share and encourage each other in class and tackle some writing at home. Reading your stories aloud will prove a powerful affirmation, and listening to others as they share theirs is an effective way to improve your own writing. Join this group, capped at 12, to learn how to transform your cherished memories into your memoirs.   This is a repeat of the popular course taught in fall 2009 and spring 2010.

Recommended reading: Lou Willett Stanek, Writing Your Life (Collins, 1996), and Frank Thomas, How to Write the Story of Your Life (Writers’ Digest Books, 1989).

Facilitator: Patricia Cox has taught writing to upper elementary students for the Denver Public Schools and for Cherry Creek School District. Her credo is: “Write to save your life, and write to share your life.”

Facilitator: Kathy Boyer
5 Thursdays, Oct. 21—Nov. 18
10 am—12 noon

If you’ve completed any memoir-writing class and are serious about continuing your project, this is the class for you. Participants will be expected to write at least one new piece each week to read to the class for possible feedback and encouragement.  At the end of the five sessions, members will be ready to form an independent, ongoing writing group.  Limited to 10 participants

Facilitator: Kathy Boyer, a retired teacher, has conducted Life Stories workshops for libraries, summer camps, churches, community centers, and the Academy. She also helps individuals record their memories electronically.


The Evolution of Warfare
Facilitator:  Bob Mendes
8 Tuesdays, Sept. 21—Nov. 9
10 am—12 noon
Lecture, videos, maps, discussion

In this timely look at a subject that is constantly in the news, we begin by studying the way warfare has changed from the tribal militias of the pre-Christian Middle East and Asia to the large standing armies of 19th and early 20th century Europe, capped by Germany’s breakthrough World War II “blitzkrieg” strategy. Next we take up the effective use of guerrilla forces by Mao Tse-Tung in 1930s China, by Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam a decade later, and more recently by groups in Iraq and Afghanistan. Finally, we consider how new forms of warfare can be met by a high-tech military power like the United States, possibly through the widespread use of unmanned drones and the development of robots that mimic human soldiers without endangering flesh and blood. We’ll also discuss the impact of unconventional warfare on the US military budget. Special Forces officer Dr. Adam Liberman—whose duty tours have taken him to the Philippines, Iraq, Afghanistan, and currently to Somalia and Yemen—will give a guest lecture about the role of Special Forces in the present day US military and his experiences in the field.

Recommended reading: Hammes, Thomas X., The Sling and the Stone: On War in the 21st Century (Zenith Press, 2006)

Facilitator: Bob Mendes is a widely traveled retired petroleum engineer with a special interest in military history.

Facilitator: Walt Meyer
4 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Oct. 7
1:30-3:30 pm
Lecture, discussion

“Today the wars of the crusaders are ended,” British commander General Allenby is said to have declared after wresting Jerusalem from German and Turkish forces in December 1917. Yet, nearly a century later, and a full millennium after the fall of Jerusalem in the first Crusade, the Christian West remains embroiled in conflict with much of the Muslim World. We’ll explore the origins of this clash, from the first Crusade against Palestine to the fifth Crusade against Egypt.  We’ll also examine the unification of Muslims under Saladin and how the memory of the Crusades faded in the minds of Muslims only to be rekindled by the experiences of colonialism in the 19th and early 20th centuries.  Finally, we will discuss how the Crusades have left a lingering scar on the thinking of both Islam and the West, and what it may mean for the future.

Recommended viewing & reading:  Madden, Thomas, The New Concise History of the Crusades (Rowman & Littlefield, 2006), pp 213-225; Hillenbrand, Carole, The Crusades: Islamic Perspectives (Edinburgh University Press, 1999), pp 589-616; Siberry, Elizabith, The New Crusades: Images of the Crusades in the 19th and early 20th Centuries (Ashgate: Aldershot, 2000).

Facilitator: Walt Meyer is a “retired technocrat” whose recent study of Islam has rekindled his long interest in the Crusades and their considerable impact on current relations between Islam and the West.

Critical Decisions
Facilitator: Dick Young
6 Wednesdays, Sept. 29—Nov. 3
10 am—12 noon
Lecture, discussion, re-enactment

Unlike Tom Hanks’s recent TV series, this course focuses on the “why’s” of the war in the Pacific, not on the heroic acts of our troops there during WWII. Why did Japan decide to attack the United States in the first place, and why did Admiral Yamamoto attack Midway?  What made Admiral Kimmel so sure that the Japanese wouldn’t attack Pearl Harbor?  And why didn’t Admiral Halsey take steps to prevent the American landings in Leyte Gulf from ending in near-disaster? What influenced President Truman’s decision to drop two atomic bombs on Japanese cities? With the benefit of more than 65 years of hindsight, we’ll talk about what role luck played in many wartime outcomes, delve into the successes and failures of military leaders on both sides, and consider strategies that might have been more effective.

Required reading: Dunnigan, James, Victory at Sea: World War II in the Pacific (Harper Paperbacks, 1996)

Recommended reading: Prange, Gordon, At Dawn We Slept: The Untold Story of Pearl Harbor (Penguin Books, 1982) and Costello, John, The Pacific War: 1941-1945 (Harper Perennial, 1982).

Facilitator: Dick Young, a political activist and history buff, has taught a course on Pearl Harbor at various Elderhostels and the continuing education programs of several universities.


Do We Know What We’re Doing?
Facilitator: Sheila Porter
3 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Sept. 30
10 am—12 noon
$20 (nonmembers $35)
Lecture, discussion

In the wake of recent earthquakes, floods, and other natural disasters, Americans have donated millions to international relief efforts in hopes of improving the lives of survivors. Yet most of us know almost nothing about how our dollars are spent or whether they have much real impact in emerging countries. In this class we’ll consider the factors such as media coverage, high-tech solicitations, and mega-events—that make us more, or less, inclined to donate, and we’ll discuss what steps we can take to make more informed charitable donations.

Facilitator: Sheila Porter, a retired clinical and forensic psychologist, traces her interest in genocide, the plight of Africa, and the erratic progress of the developing world in part to her volunteer projects in Cambodia and Africa.

Are You a Target?
Facilitator: Sherma Erholm
8 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Nov. 10 (skip Oct. 13)
10 am—12 noon
Lecture & Discussion

Would you have given Bernie Madoff your life savings? Even if you can honestly answer “no,” you’re probably as susceptible as the rest of us to the seduction of subtle persuasion. We all need to heighten our awareness of the techniques that individuals, politicians, companies, and the media use to influence us. Obviously, we need to exercise vigilance, whether to avoid unscrupulous ploys or to respond more discriminatingly to the assertions of those we trust. We’ll probe the way persuasion works, analyze messages from diverse sources, and evaluate the role of persuasion in creating social and cultural change.

Facilitator: A career teacher with degrees in speech and music as well as communication theory and psychology, Sherma Erholm is intrigued by the social role of increasingly sophisticated persuasion techniques—for better or worse.

Your Challenges & Effective Problem Solving
Instructor: Mary Zinn
3 Tuesdays, Sept. 28—Oct. 12
1:30-3:30 pm
$20 (nonmembers $35)
Lecture, discussion, group exercises

In human relationships, conflict is inevitable . . . says who?  Do you engage in conflict or avoid it entirely?  Can you have a dynamic discussion about a difficult problem without having the roof blow off, or is the outcome typically negative?  Join others in exploring what you already know about solving interpersonal problems, what you can do to manage conflicts more effectively, and how you can model these skills in your home, office, or community.  In this hands-on, interactive course you’ll consider embracing conflicts as learning opportunities. We’ll see a mock mediation, meet a panel of experts in the field, and find out about various conflict management methods, local resources, and volunteer opportunities.

Required reading: Lederach, John Paul, The Little Book of Conflict Transformation (Good Books, 2003).

Facilitator: Mary Zinn has more than twenty years in the dispute resolution field as a practitioner, trainer and curriculum designer. Her presentations are known to be engaging and enlightening.

Choices! Choices!
Facilitator: Ellie Greenberg
5 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Oct. 13
1:30—3:30 pm
$45 (includes required book)
$33 (no book; you must purchase or borrow one in order to participate)
Group exercises, discussion, lecture

Chances are, you’re either in or nearing the “third third” of  your life and probably wondering, like Ellie Greenberg, “How could that be? Where has the time gone? Stop the clock!” Join Ellie as she reviews recent research on adult development, explores the personal issues and options you’re facing in life after 55, and explains steps you can take to smooth  the way for making life transitions.  We’ll check out various over-55 websites and blogs and take a look at intergenerational opportunities and barriers—all with the goal of uncovering new ways to live a vibrant and active life during your lengthening “third third.”  This is a repeat course with some new twists. New and returning participants are welcome.

Required reading: (included in tuition) Elinor Miller Greenberg and Fay Wadsworth Whitney, A Time of Our Own: In Celebration of Women over Sixty (Fulcrum Publishing, 2008).

Recommended reading: Betty Friedan, The Fountain of Age (Simon & Schuster, 1993).

Facilitator: Author, teacher, and educator, Ellie Greenberg is perhaps best known for developing and leading University without Walls in the 1970s, the start of a 40-year career in providing “access to opportunity” for adults.

Presenters: Colorado Bar Association judges and lawyers
6 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Oct. 21
1:30—3:30 pm
Lecture, discussion, video

If what you know about our judicial system depends largely on the media coverage of sensational cases, this course will prove a real eye-opener. Taught by attorneys and judges with first-hand courtroom experience, the course was designed jointly by the Colorado Bar Association and the Colorado Judicial Institute’s Our Courts program to explain how State and Federal courts actually work—and how judicial procedures help keep the law fair and impartial. The Our Courts program recently won a national award from the ABA and has been recognized by Sandra Day O’Conner.  Topics include the selection and evaluation of judges, the differences between practices followed in criminal and civil cases, the basics of bankruptcy, and the ways in which Abraham Lincoln’s commitment to equality and liberty transformed the system more than a century ago. This is a repeat of the popular course last spring.


Facilitator: Vee Sabel
8 Thursdays, Sept. 30—Nov. 18
10 am—12 noon
$75 (includes the required Briefing Book)
$52 (no book; you must share or borrow one in order to participate)
Discussion, PBS videos, guest speakers

The Great Decisions Discussion Groups are part of a nation-wide program developed by the Foreign Policy Association.  Each year thousands of Americans discuss and formulate their opinions on eight vital foreign policy issues. This year’s topics include: Special Envoys, Kenya and R2P, Global Crime, U.S.-China Security Relations, Global Financial Crisis, Russia and its Neighbors, the Persian Gulf, Peace-building and Conflict Resolution. Each 15-page chapter  in the Great Decisions Briefing Book places the issues in historical context and provides background, current policies, and alternative options. Discussion questions, annotated reading suggestions, and additional resources, including websites, are provided.  Videos featuring renowned experts in the field provide additional food for thought. Registration is required by September 1 so that books may be ordered.

Required reading: Great Decisions Briefing Book, which will be mailed in advance.

Facilitator: Vee Sabel is a confirmed foreign policy junkie and world traveler. She is a skilled facilitator who loves to hear the opinions of others and gain new perspective on issues.

Facilitator: Charles Hall
8 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Nov. 3
10 am—12 noon
Book discussion, lecture

With little in the way of natural resources, how did Japan become rich while African nations with a wealth of natural resources remained mired in poverty for centuries?  Why did China and the Arab World, leading civilizations in the first millennium, begin to fall behind Europe in the second? How did once-rich nations like Spain and Italy become poor, and how did the United States become a world leader in less than 100 years? This class offers valuable historical perspective on the underlying causes for the development of nations.

Required reading: Landes, David S., The Wealth and Poverty of Nations (W.W. Norton & Co., 1999).

Facilitator: Charles Hall, a retired lawyer, has examined the subject of wealth and poverty for several years, and always appreciates hearing the views of others.

Facilitator: Ralph Plimpton
6 Tuesdays, Sept. 14—Oct. 19
10 am—12 noon
Lecture, discussion

Contrary to the popular, politically correct, but fallacious idea that all cultures are equally valuable, some cultures propel their people to ever greater heights of achievement and prosperity while others hold their people back and actually regress.  We’ll attempt to define the characteristics that produce success or failure and try to understand why some nations make decisions that are obviously failure prone.  We’ll seek to identify the most successful cultures in the world and pinpoint the superior qualities that have enabled them to keep their advantage over centuries. We’ll consider how attitudes about immigration, assimilation, and population growth play into policy choices, and, with a special look at Afghanistan, we’ll see how the outcome of wars can be affected by culture. We’ll try to answer such questions as what makes a successful culture endure and how can a culture acquire successful qualities more quickly. We’ll end by proposing the qualities needed to design a cultural policy favorable to the continued advancement of our nation.

Recommended reading: Sowell, Thomas, Migrations and Cultures: A World View (Basic Books, 1997)

Facilitator: Ralph Plimpton has had a lifelong interest in economic, political, cultural, and social issues and has facilitated popular Academy courses on topics such as current energy issues and how culture shapes nations.

Lecturer: Jim Kneser
6 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Oct. 21
10 am—12 noon
$50 (includes daily lecture notes)
Lecture, Q&A

In early 2010, after a financial upheaval that laid waste our savings and left the country deeply in debt, the U.S. economy appeared to be on the road to a strong but jobless recovery. However, the sovereign debt and banking crises that erupted in the European Union in the spring could plunge the world back into stagnation. To make matters worse, the prospect of widening federal deficits and growing national debt in the US make us vulnerable to catching the European disease. This term we’ll take a close look at the European crises and assess the implications for the US economy. In anticipation of the November report from the President’s Bipartisan Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, we’ll review the Congressional Budget Office’s August update of the 10-year forecast for US deficits and national debt. We’ll also review the canons of taxation and study the forms of new tax policy that might be recommended.

Those who’ve taken Jim’s other courses can attest that you’ll enjoy this class even without a background in economics. The course will be supported by the www.PositiveExternalities.com web site.

Lecturer: Jim Kneser loves putting his educational training in economics and finance plus his vocational experience in private equity to work researching the facts behind the news and putting current developments in proper historical context.


Facilitator: Ralph Stern
7 Tuesdays, Sept. 14—Nov. 16 (skip Oct. 19, Oct. 26, and Nov. 2)
10 am—12 noon
Lecture, Discussion

People have struggled throughout recorded history to define the concept of God and how it relates to human beings. In this course we’ll look at a wide range of approaches that Western civilizations have put forward, from the Bible and early Rabbinical literature to 20th century theologians. Among the stops on our timeline will be Philo’s spiritual monotheism, the neo-Aristotelianism of Maimonides, the mysticism of Luria, the pantheism of Spinoza, Buber’s philosophy of dialogue, the limited theism of Steinberg, the religious naturalism of Kaplan, the humanism of Fromm, the depth theology of Heschel—and others participants suggest.

Required reading: Sonsino, Rifat, Finding God, Selected Responses (Urj Press, 2002)

Facilitator: Ralph Stern has spent the past 40 years reading about theology, theodicy and comparative religion.   In 1986 he entered the Jewish Theological Seminary and received a Masters in Jewish Philosophy.

Facilitators: Sue Haskell & Barbara Rush
6 Thursdays, Sept. 30—Nov. 4
1:30—3:30 pm
$40 (includes many handouts)
Lecture, discussion, video, participant reports

Whether you’re a believer, a skeptic or a dispassionate observer of world-wide movements, you’ll enjoy exploring what Deepak Chopra, Dr. Wayne Dyer, Louise Hay, and even Buddha have said about spirituality.  We’ll examine a host of questions:  What is spirituality?  What is mysticism? How does spirituality impact our lives?  Can we heal ourselves? Is God still speaking to us today?   Join us on an active, responsible, and creative journey to find to your personal answers through class discussion and re-examination of your beliefs.

Facilitators:  While the real estate business was her vocation, Sue Haskell’s avocation has always been spirituality. Her extensive spiritual studies range from EST to Reiki and a course in miracles.  With advanced degrees in Global Religions and The Study of Higher Consciousness, Barbara Rush envisions her Special Focus Ministry as a natural extension of her passion to help expand humankind’s “oneness.”

Will Your Doc Break the Rules for You?
Facilitator:  Fred Abrams
8 Tuesdays, Sept. 28-Nov. 16
1:30—3:30 pm
$65 (includes required reading book)
$52 (no book; you must purchase or borrow one in order to participate)
Presentation, discussion

Doctors lie, betray confidences, and break the law. Can this be right?  If their decisions are the best of anguishing alternatives, perhaps they are right. But where would you draw the line?  To examine these issues, we’ll analyze absorbing, true stories about dilemmas facing doctors and patients—situations like euthanasia, assisted suicide, advance directives, abortion, sterilization, marital infidelity, intersexuality, birth defects, AIDs confidentiality, and rape.  All participants are expected to read the appropriate chapters of Dr. Abrams’ book Doctors on the Edge (included in the course tuition) so they will be prepared to offer their opinions each week. You’ll face the dilemma. You’ll make the decision. This is a repeat of the popular course offered in fall 2009 and spring 2010. Registration required by September 1 so that books may be ordered. Limited to 24.

Instructor:  An obstetrician and gynecologist since 1959, Dr. Fred Abrams has taught biomedical ethics and spearheaded medical ethics programs for health-care professionals, teachers, community leaders, and hospital ethics committees.


Instructor: John Anderson
7 Tuesdays, Sept. 28—Nov. 9
1:30-3:30 pm
Videos, discussion, guest lecturer

Almost everyone has heard of black holes, but few outside the field of cosmology grasp the true nature of these awe-inspiring phenomena or the implications they hold for our universe. We‘ll dive into the subject with the help of a video lecture series featuring the dynamic Alex Filippenko, distinguished astronomer and award-winning professor at the University of California, Berkeley. Each week, we’ll view and discuss two lavishly illustrated 30-minute DVDs, which also touch on other cutting-edge concepts in astronomy, including general relativity, supermassive monsters at the heart of galaxies, and wormholes that connect universes. No alien encounters are anticipated—though we’ll meet guest speaker Professor Andrew Hamilton from CU-Boulder, who has agreed to answer your unresolved questions at the final session.

Recommended reading: Thorne, Kip, Black Holes and Time Warps: Einstein’s Outrageous Legacy (W.W. Norton & Company, 1995) and Kaufmann, Wm. J., Black Holes and Warped Spacetime (Bantam Books, 1981).

Instructor: Since retiring from the computer industry, John Anderson has enthusiastically resumed his undergraduate interest in physics and the history of science. His degree from Yale is in physics, and he has facilitated science classes such as “Feynman Physics Fest” and “Particle Physics for Non-Scientists.”

New Lectures from the Cutting Edge
Lecturers: CU Science Faculty
Part 1:
6 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Oct. 20
10 am—12 noon
Lectures, Q&A
Part 2:
4 Thursdays, Oct. 28—Nov. 18
10 am—12 noon
Lectures, Q&A
Current members may attend one lecture for free—just arrive early and sign in.

The University of Colorado at Boulder has put together a timely series of science lectures featuring 10 distinguished faculty members. Only one lecturer is scheduled per morning, so there will be more time for questions.  You needn’t be a science nerd to take advantage of this rare opportunity to learn about recent scientific discoveries and get acquainted with accomplished researchers at Colorado’s flagship university. No prerequisites, required reading, or quizzes. Each lecture stands alone, so you won’t fall behind if you have to miss a class.

Part 1: Wednesday mornings
Sept. 15 – Andrew Hamilton, “Black Holes, Inside & Out”
Sept. 22 – Noah Fierer, “Exploring Terra Incognita: The Human Body as a Microbial Habitat”
Sept. 29 – TBA
Oct. 6 – Barney Ellison, “Climate Change, Biomass Energy, and Organic Chemistry”
Oct. 13 – Delphine Farmer, “A Breath of Fresh Air: Perspectives on Forest Interactions with Air Quality and Climate”
Oct. 20 – Pieter Johnson, “Sick & Twisted: Using Deformed Frogs to Promote an Ecological Understanding of Disease”

Part 2: Thursday mornings
Oct. 28 – Leaf Van Boven, “Emotion, Attention, and Psychological Distance”
Nov. 4 – Sona Dimidjian, “New Frontiers in the Treatment and Prevention of Depression”
Nov. 11 – Tor Wager, “The Mind Made Visible”
Nov. 18 – Don Cooper, “How Memorier Form, Fade, and Persist Over Time”

Are We Hardwired?  Part 2 (resumption of the class postponed last spring)
Instructor: Bennie Bub
7 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Oct. 28
1:30—3:30 pm
$20 Neurobiology Notebook (identical to the one offered previously)
Lectures, videos, Q&A
No prerequisite required

The 19th-century satirist Ambrose Bierce was right on when he defined the brain as “an apparatus with which we think we think.” Most of us know little about our bodies, much less about how our brain works. Neurobiology (the study of the nervous system) is only one of 50 or so overlapping scientific fields comprising neuroscience, and it’s in a state of constant flux as new investigative methods like functional MRI provide clarifying insights. This is the second part of a course that began in fall 2009 and was interrupted in the 2010 spring term.  It is not necessary to have attended previous lectures.  These remaining talks stand on their own.  To bring everyone up-to-date there’ll be a brief review at the first class of the complex factors at work in human behavior.  We’ll continue with discussions on genetics and heritability and examine in some detail, human aggression, which is of such fundamental importance in today’s world.  We’ll end with a revealing look at what your brain has to accomplish through just one single day in your life.

You’ll find links to all material in the Neurobiology Notebook, as well as to “Additional Absorbing Articles,” under the heading “Course Materials” on the Academy website (www.AcademyLL.org). You can read or print these out at your leisure.

Highly recommended reading:  Michael S. Gazzaniga, The Ethical Brain (Dana Press, 2005).

Instructor: Bennie Bub, MD, FRCS, is a South African neurosurgeon board-certified in three different specialties on three continents. After immigrating to the US in 1976, he practiced in Denver as an anesthesiologist for more than 20 years before founding a successful database company, from which he has retired to indulge his love of music, travel, and reading.


Coordinator: Lois Martin
9 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Nov. 10
12:15—1:15 pm
$35 or $5/session (one session free with Academy membership)
$8 nonmembers
Lectures, Q&A, various
Choose one, some, or all of these fascinating lunchtime presentations

A) Sept. 15 “De-stress—Any Time, Any Place”  In this “experiential hour,” certified Yoga teacher Lisa Eller Davis invites you to discover how to use your intellectual curiosity to create new pathways in your mind. You will experience ways to access concentration and focus, relaxation and joy.

B) Sept. 22 “The Effect of Culture on Mental Health”  How do psychological experience, ethnicity, race and culture intersect? Join Dr. Arthur Jones, a clinical professor of culture and psychology at the University of Denver, to explore this complex approach to understanding mental health.

C) Sept. 29 “Principles of Design”  Drawing on two decades of professional experience as a graphic designer, Amy Feiman will examine specific principles of design through stories and metaphors, connecting each principle to real-world activities and situations.

D) Oct. 6 “Memories of War and Growing up in Poland behind the Iron Curtain”  A hidden child Holocaust survivor, Lea Schreiber will explore how she deals with her memories through painting her “safe places” and writing.

E) Oct. 13 “Successful Aging: A Biological Perspective”  Why do some people seem older (or younger) than their chronological age? With Dr. Paula Enrietto as your guide, you’ll examine the difference between natural aging and disease and enhance your ability to act as an informed advocate of your own health care.

F) Oct. 20 “Of Ships and the Sea: A Captain’s View”   Retired from consecutive careers as a sea captain and an economics professor, Dr. Bernhard Abrahamsson will delve into the recent history of sea-going vessels, sea folklore and the natural and man-made dangers of the sea.

G) Oct. 27 “Medical Decision-Making throughout Life”  Dr. Maria Anderson will outline a lifelong approach to medical decision-making, including how to handle the challenges of serious illness and convey your wishes to loved ones, doctors and lawyers.

H) Nov. 3 “An Update on Feminism & Gender Studies”  How have feminism and women’s studies changed since the early days of the “Women’s Liberation” movement? Join Dr. Gini Fink to explore the growth of women’s studies and feminism since the 1990s and the current controversies within feminism.

I) Nov. 10 “Soda Pop”  Come prepared to talk about your favorite soda pop, especially those from your childhood! Adrian Miller, senior policy analyst for Gov. Ritter and a dedicated foodie, will regale you with a brief and humorous history of carbonated beverages in the U.S., from soda pop’s connection to the Divine, to its early roots as medicine and its current connections to cultural identity.


Instructors: Susan Blake-Smith & Cyndi Sauvage
6 Wednesdays, Sept. 15—Nov. 3 (skip Sept. 29 & Oct. 27)
1:30-3:30 pm
Conversational Spanish

Tailored to fit beginners as well as those with some previous Spanish language experience, this lively class covers basic vocabulary and phrases essential for travel and casual conversation.  You’ll learn what to say in common situations—“My luggage seems to have taken a different flight,” or “Did I really order this?”—and how to avoid common mistakes like inviting your newfound Spanish-speaking friends into your “cama” instead of your “casa.” Will you be fluent by the end of the class? No. But will you have a weekly fiesta of fun and gain greater confidence in this musical and increasingly important language? Si!  (On the first day the group will be divided according to their Spanish levels.)

Facilitators: Susan Blake-Smith grew up in Mexico City and enjoys sharing her love of the Mexican language, history, and culture.  She has served on several nonprofit boards and has worked as a volunteer and fundraiser for many others.   Cyndi Sauvage is a worldwide traveler to over 75 countries, and lived for several years in Spain.  She is a 15-year veteran of the publishing industry and has been involved in every aspect of writing, editing and producing a wide variety of magazines, books and newspapers.

BYO Questions & Problems
Computer Super-User: Carri Currier
7 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Oct. 28
12:15—1:15 pm
$0 FREE!  Drop in
Q&A, Demonstration

This course will be driven mainly by the PC-related questions participants bring to it, but it will also address such general issues as how to find the File You Know You Saved, how to use Google to best advantage, how to put together a mailing list and send messages to all or some of the names, how to book travel effectively, and what you need to know about different operating systems (i.e., Vista or XP) and application programs (i.e., Quicken, Word, and Excel).  We’ll also cover common computer terminology and buzzwords, decipher the meaning of jpg, ppt, docx, and other funny letters that follow file names, and deal with specific individual problems that can be shared with the group.  Bring your own laptop or watch Carri use hers.

Computer Super-User: Carri Currier has been involved with computers since the late 60’s when she started as a programmer.  As the owner of a computer consulting company she customized off-the-shelf software for her industry.

Beginning Level
Instructor: Milt Shioya
9 Thursdays, Sept. 16—Nov. 11
10 am—12 noon
Lecture, Q&A, playing cards
Intermediate Level
Instructor: Sally Kneser
8 Tuesdays, Sept. 21—Nov. 9
1:30-3:30 pm
$75 (includes flash cards)
Lecture, Q&A, playing cards

These courses focus on how to play the cards rather than how to bid.  Learn various techniques for handling different card combinations and become faster at deciding what to do first. Join as a single, with a partner, or as a foursome.

Beginning level: Participants will learn basic finesses, discarding losers, promoting length, and ruffing.  Open to those who already have a basic knowledge of bidding, including those who play socially.  There will be assigned (required) reading from Play of the Hand in the 21st Century, explanations, Q&A, and playing pre-set hands.  Those who are uncertain about their ability level should contact Milt Shioya, 303-331-8654.

Intermediate level:  This is a continuing class. Participants should already be comfortable using basic finesses, discarding losers, promoting length, and ruffing. Intermediate level bidding skill is also expected, including a thorough understanding of Stayman, Jacoby transfers, weak twos, and strong two clubs.  We’ll spend one hour examining hands, drilling, lecture, and Q&A, followed by an hour playing pre-set hands.  New participants must have the permission of the instructor, Sally Kneser, 303-770-0788.

Beginning level required reading: Audrey Grant, Play of the Hand in the 21st Century (Baron Barclay Bridge, 2008).

Recommended reading: Watson, Louis, Watson’s Classic Book on The Play of the Hand at Bridge (Harper Paperbacks, 1971).

Instructors: Milt Shioya (Beginning level) is an avid bridge play who has proven himself at the bridge table with over 1000 master points, and thus is a Silver Life Master.   Bridge nut and art groupie Sally Kneser (Intermediate level) is also the Academy’s Director. Sally is a Life Master in bridge and enjoys explaining the basics of the game.

Academy Facilitators

Our facilitators are enthusiastic volunteers who research and present courses on topics of great interest to them. The materials and opinions they and their guest speakers present are their own and not necessarily those of the Academy for Lifelong Learning.

Dr. Bernhard Abrahamsson (Experts and Entertainers) was born in Stockholm, Sweden, and joined the Swedish Merchant Marine at an early age, sailing on both Swedish and Israeli ships and earning his unlimited Master’s License (Sea Captain).  He reached the rank of commander in the Swedish Naval Reserve before becoming a US citizen.   After leaving the sea, he completed a Ph.D. in economics and worked at the International Monetary Fund.  He next pursued an academic life focusing on international relations and maritime affairs. He has taught, done research, and consulted in the US and abroad. He joined the faculty of the (then named) Graduate School of International Studies at DU, where he also served a lengthy term as Interim Dean.

Dr. Fred Abrams (Doctors on the Edge: Will Your Doc Break the Rules for You?) is currently the Director of The Clinical Ethics Consultation Group, a medical consultant to the Colorado Foundation for Medical Care, an Adjunct Professor of Ethics at the Iliff School of Theology, and also a volunteer faculty for the Center for Bioethics and Humanities at UCHSC. In 2003 he was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Center for Bioethics and Humanities of the UCHSC. In 2006 he was selected to receive the Isaac Bell and John Hayes Award for Leadership in Medical Ethics and Professionalism from the Board of Trustees and Foundation of the American Medical Association.

In 1983 he became the founder and director of the first community hospital-based center for study and teaching of bioethics, the Center for Applied Biomedical Ethics at Rose Medical Center in Denver, which provided the training in the 1980s for all the original Colorado hospital ethics committees. In the mid-1980s, he was a leader in the passage of Colorado’s first “Living Will” law and participated in its revisions during the next decade.

Dr. Abrams was Executive Director of the Denver University/ Colorado University Health Ethics and Policy Consortium and Adjunct Professor at the Graduate School of Public Affairs at the University of Colorado in Denver. He was Project Director of the Robert Wood Johnson-supported “Colorado Speaks out on Health” project in 1987 that held over 400 meetings with Coloradoans to discuss ethical issues in healthcare. He developed and teaches courses in the “Essentials of Biomedical Ethics,” assisting hospitals, long-term care facilities and communities to create ethics committees for continuing education of facility staff and for public outreach. Over the past 25 years, he has conducted more than 1500 workshops, lectures and conferences for medical, nursing, legal, clergy, and teaching professionals, and for the public on ethical issues.

John Anderson (Black Holes Explained) was in technical sales and support in the computer industry for 30 years. Retirement allowed him to resume an undergraduate interest in physics and the history of science.  He has facilitated several science classes at the Academy and OLLI, including “The Great Equations,” “Feynman Physics Fest” and “Particle Physics for Non-Scientists.”  He escaped to Colorado 20 years ago after a score of years in the New York/New Jersey area including seven years on Wall Street.  He has a degree in physics from Yale.  If he doesn’t answer the phone, he’s probably out biking or skiing.

Susan Blake-Smith (Chatting in Español) is an early member of The Academy who spent 25 years living in Mexico City, making her uniquely qualified to teach conversational Spanish.    Susan has a BFA in journalism from SMU and enjoyed a successful career in marketing and sales in the travel industry. She has served on several non-profit boards in Denver and chaired many fundraisers over the years.   She remembers scrambling up the Pyramid of the Sun on grade-school field trips and looks forward to imagining how history (particularly US history) might have been different had Hernán Cortez not defeated the mighty Aztecs.

Gil Boggs (Ballet: Dance) began his dance career with the Atlanta Ballet. He joined American Ballet Theater in New York in 1982 and was promoted to principal dancer in 1991. Boggs was a member of the company for 17 years. Boggs also performed with the Twyla Tharp Dance Company, Baryshnikov and Company, Nureyev and Friends, and made several guest appearances around the world. During his career with ABT, he was recognized as both an accomplished virtuoso and one of the company’s most popular performers. Throughout his career, Boggs has worked with such noted choreographers as Agnes de Mille, Sir Kenneth MacMillan, Paul Taylor, Mark Morris, Jerome Robbins and Merce Cunningham and has an extensive performance repertoire of both classical and contemporary works. He has staged ballets for ABT, Twyla Tharp and Royal Birmingham Ballet in England.

Kathy Boyer (Writing Your Life Stories: Getting Started; and Writing Your Life Stories: Finishing Your Project), has conducted LIFE STORY workshops for libraries, summer camps, churches, community centers, and with the Academy.  As a child, Kathy developed a love of the personal story as she listened to adults recall the tales of their childhood.  Now a retired teacher, Kathy works with individuals to record their memories on audio-tape.  As a workshop facilitator, she offers inspiration and ideas to groups of people who want to begin a written collection of their own short stories.

Dr. Bennie Bub, MD, FRCS (Human Behavior & Neurobiology, Are We Hardwired? Part 2), is a South African neurosurgeon who is board-certified in three different specialties on three continents.  His teaching career began when, as a medical student, he taught physics at a technical college in return for free car maintenance courses. After receiving his MD at the University of Cape Town, he became a general surgeon gaining his FRCS (Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons) in the UK.  Having been captivated by the complexities of the brain, he now began his neurosurgical studies in London at the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases and Epilepsy. Thereafter he became a Teaching and Research Fellow at Harvard College as well as a resident in the Harvard Neurosurgical Service at the Boston City and Massachusetts General Hospitals.  Concurrently, he studied violin performance in the Boston Conservatory of Music. This Boston sojourn was followed by completion of his neurosurgical certification at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town.

Then began his years of busy neurosurgical private practice, simultaneously teaching as Senior Lecturer in the Department of Neurosurgery at the University of Cape Town.  During this period he founded the first multidisciplinary clinic in South Africa for the management of intractable pain.  Immigration to the USA in 1976 was followed by training and board certification in Anesthesiology.  He then joined a practice in Denver, from which he retired after more than 20 years.  In the early nineties he was founder and CEO of a successful database company, which provided credentialing of physicians for health insurance companies.  Since retirement he has indulged in his love of music, travel and voracious reading, all the while striving to stay au courant with the neurosciences.

Greg Carpenter (Opera Colorado Takes the Stage) is the General Director of Opera Colorado, responsible for overseeing artistic and administrative operations of the company and guiding a staff of eighteen full-time employees.   Prior to joining Opera Colorado, he worked for three years as the Manager of Development with the National Symphony Orchestra at the John F. Kennedy Center.  He was the Artist and Events Services Manager with the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland.  From 1986 to 1998 Greg sang leading and supporting roles at Glimmerglass Opera, Central City Opera, Sarasota Opera, Opera Theatre of North Virginia, Cleveland Opera and Lyric Opera Cleveland.

Dr. Don Cooper (CU Science Sampler), CU Psychology and Neuroscience professor (Behavioral Genetics and
Behavioral Neuroscience) and Institute for Behavioral Genetics fellow, was chosen to speak at the President’s Teaching Scholars Conference in March 2010, on the Anschutz Medical Campus. The broad topic of his talk was learning and brain science, how brain development influences student behavior, the development of learning and problem-solving, individual differences in learning, and what faculty should know about how the brain works.

Patricia Cox (Write to Save your Life: Beginning Memoir Writing) has been writing to save her life, practically all her life.  With a B.S. in Education and an M.A. in Guidance and Counseling, she taught for the Denver Public Schools and Cherry Creek Schools while raising three daughters.  She has taught memoir writing for many groups and has recently published a memoir about her late husband, a victim of Alzheimer’s disease:  We Keep Our Potato Chips in the Refrigerator.

Carri Currier (Computer Tips: BYO Questions & Problems) has been involved with computers since the late 1960s when she started work as a programmer.  As the owner of a computer consulting company, she customized off-the-shelf software for her industry. Since retiring in 2006 she has devoted her time to art but uses computers extensively for the numerous board positions in which she serves.  Carri is referred to as a “super user,” meaning she has used a computer a great deal “so I know a little about a lot of things.”  She brings logic and problem-solving skills to any situation.  Carri is a cat lover, and enjoys gardening, travel and the culinary arts.  She is dedicated to recycling and using renewable resources.

Lisa Eller Davis (Experts and Entertainers) brings to her clients more than 30 years of experience in the healing arts. She began meditating at age 15, and stepped onto a yoga mat for the first time at age 18. Since then, Lisa has studied with different Masters of meditation and the life path of yoga, including physical postures, controlled breathing, mind-body awareness and ethical practices on and off the mat. After many hundreds of hours of study and practice over the years, Lisa recognized the call to teach. She received her Yoga Teacher Certification from the Prana Yoga and Ayurveda Mandala. As a registered member of the International Yoga Alliance, which sets the standards for certification, Lisa pursues learning and deepening her skill sets in an order far exceeding CEU requirements of the Alliance. Lisa’s style combines compassion with humor. She encourages students and clients to listen to their body’s wisdom. In addition to her formal training, she is familiar with the power of these processes after a total knee replacement in 2008. “There is nothing more fulfilling to me than helping people become more comfortable in their bodies and their lives.”

Dr. Sona Dimidjian (CU Science Sampler) received her Ph.D. in 2005 from the University of Washington in Clinical Psychology. A recipient of numerous awards in the treatment of depression, her research focuses on both the treatment and prevention of depression, with a specific focus on perinatal depression.  She has a strong interest in the clinical application of mindfulness, including both Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy. She has conducted numerous courses and workshops on mindfulness-based treatments for clinicians and has a longstanding mindfulness and yoga practice.

Bill Dorn (Agatha Christie: Hercule Poirot Sampler) is Professor Emeritus of Mathematics at the University of Denver, where he was a faculty member for 30 years. He has taught both credit and non-credit courses on a number of classic fictional detectives and is the author of five books about Sherlock Holmes, including a Sherlockian cook book. Bill is a member of the Baker Street Irregulars (the premier American Sherlockian organization) and The Sherlock Holmes Society of London, as well as Colorado’s own club, “Dr. Watson’s Neglected Patients.”

Dr. Barney Ellison (CU Science Sampler) is an experimental organic chemist at the University of Colorado. He teaches undergraduate courses in Freshman Chemistry and Organic Chemistry and a seminar in Valence for graduate students. His research program is centered on the chemical physics of organic molecules.

Since 1999 Ellison has become interested in the chemistry and spectroscopy of organic aerosols. To understand the fundamental steps in the “atmospheric processing” of organic aerosols, he studies the oxidation of organic radicals and hydrocarbon films in a high-vacuum surface chamber.

The University of Colorado promoted Ellison from Assistant Professor to a tenured Associate Professor in 1983; he was promoted to the rank of full Professor in 1988. He lives in Boulder, Colorado, and is married to chemist and patent attorney Dr. Sally A. Sullivan. They have two children, Nicholas and Samantha.

Dr. Paula Enrietto (Experts and Entertainers) is the Executive Director of The Lodge at Balfour. Paula has a longstanding commitment to advocacy for the elderly and an intimate knowledge of medical and social issues facing seniors. She has an extensive background in scientific research and business development that brings a unique, analytical perspective to the long-term care industry. Previously, Paula was an Associate Professor at The State University of New York at Stony Brook, where her work was funded by the National Institutes of Health. She also was a staff scientist at Genomica Corp. and Director of Biology at Kenna Technologies. In each of these roles, Paula developed extensive skills in analyzing the changing healthcare field. Paula received her doctor of philosophy from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center and completed her training at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund in London, where she was awarded a fellowship from the National Institutes of Health. She is the author of more than 45 publications and an invited speaker at several national conferences.

Dr. Delphine Farmer (CU Science Sampler) earned her MS from the Silver lab in 2001, finishing her Ph.D. in the Cohen Group <http://www.cchem.berkeley.edu/rccgrp/>; in the Department of Chemistry at UC Berkeley, where she worked on eddy covariance fluxes of reactive nitrogen oxides in the Sierra Nevada.

Dr. Farmer is currently a post-doctoral researcher working with Prof. Jose-Luis Jimenez at the University of Colorado at Boulder with a NOAA Climate and Global Change Fellowship, studying interactions between the biosphere and atmosphere, using novel instrumentation in field studies.  Dr. Farmer is interested in how emissions with plants interact with air pollutants, and how these interactions affect local air quality and climate.

Dr. Noah Fierer (CU Science Sampler) earned his Ph.D. in Ecology from the University of California – Santa Barbara in 2003.  He is currently Assistant Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado at Boulder.  Dr. Fierer’s research interests include microbial ecology and biogeography, as well as terrestrial ecosystem ecology and the impact of global change factors on microbial communities and processes.

His current research includes the biogeography of soil microbial communities at continental and regional scales and the impact of nutrient additions on carbon and nitrogen cycling in soil.  It also includes understanding the factors which influence the structure and diversity of archaeal, fungal, bacterial, and viral communities in the soil environment.

Rebecca Gorman (Shakespeare for Everyone!) holds a BA in Drama and English from Dartmouth College and an MFA in Dramatic Writing from Carnegie Mellon University.  She is in her sixth year on the English faculty at Metro State University, where she teaches Drama, Writing, and Cinema Studies courses.

Ellie Greenberg (Celebrating Women Over 60: Choices! Choices!)  has been interested in the adult life cycle since she developed and led the University Without Walls in the 1970s. Over the last 40 years, she has had the privilege of designing and leading many more programs for adults, such as: PATHWAYS to the Future for 40,000 US WEST non-management employees in 14 states; Project Leadership focused on non-profit board leadership; and MAPP–the Mountain and Plains Partnership-online Masters degree programs for health professionals in underserved areas.  Ms. Greenberg has served on many boards and commissions, and learned politics through the civil rights and women’s movements.   She cares about learners and learning, and enjoys creating “access to opportunity.” She finds it exciting to be able to now share what she has learned with you through The Academy.

Charles Hall (The Wealth & Poverty of Nations) keeps active both mentally and physically.  Bike trips along the Highline Canal and cross-country skiing offer opportunities to enjoy Colorado’s beautiful outdoors.   Reading, leading classes, and chatting at coffee group keep his mind sharp. Before retiring, Charles worked as an attorney in private practice and later as in-house counsel for a commercial finance company. He subsequently was regional manager for the finance company in Denver. He has facilitated 15 courses in life-long learning programs.

Dr. Andrew Hamilton (CU Science Sampler) joined the faculty at the University of Colorado in 1986. He is currently a professor in the Department of Astrophysical & Planetary Sciences, and a Fellow and Chair of JILA (formerly the Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics).

Dr. Hamilton has worked in a variety of fields of astrophysics, including supernovae, cosmology, and most recently black holes. His scientifically-accurate general relativistic visualizations of black holes have appeared in several TV documentaries, and can be experienced in the digital dome show, “Black Holes: The Other Side of Infinity” at Gates Planetarium at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science .

Sue Haskell (Pathways to Spirituality) has her Master’s in Business Marketing from the University of Denver.  She was involved in real estate and relocation businesses for 30 years in management and ownership.  While business was her vocation, her avocation has always been spirituality and the search for Truth.  She has studied everything from Reiki to Course in Miracles and many, many more teachings, giving her a good overview of the numerous facets of spiritual enlightenment.  Before going into business she taught in a junior high school.  She also instructed many real estate classes for the Colorado Association of Realtors and twice taught a class for VIVA called The Power of Myth.

Dr. Leigh Holman (Opera Colorado Takes the Stage) has been a frequent opera lecturer including presentations of the pre-curtain lectures at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House and the Opera 101 series on KVOD. She holds a graduate Opera Performance degree from the Eastman School of Music and a Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She received her Bachelor of Music Degree from the University of Southern California. She has directed or assisted directing more than 25 professional and academic operatic and musical theatre productions with a variety of opera institutions such as Portland Opera, Nashville Opera, National Opera, Wildwood Opera, Opera Theatre of Fort Collins, University of Colorado, University of Arkansas, Eastman Opera Theatre and others. Some of her productions include il barbiere di Siviglia, Hansel and Gretel, Madama Butterfly, La Boheme, La Traviata, Falstaff, The Merry Widow, Die Fledermaus, Don Giovanni, Le Nozze di Figaro, The Tender Land, Amahl and the Night Visitors, La Cenerentola, The Sound of Music, Trial by Jury, Iolanthe, The Island of Tulipatan, La Curandera, Noye’s Fludde, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Side by Side by Sondheim, Red, Hot and Cole and many operatic and musical theatre scenes programs spanning from the Baroque period to contemporary American works.

Dr. Pieter Johnson (CU Science Sampler)’s research focuses on two pervasive and inter-related forms of biological change: disease emergence and species invasions. Both have important consequences not only for individuals and populations, but for entire ecological communities and ecosystem processes. Invasions and disease also have costly economic and health repercussions for human societies.  Dr. Johnson uses long-term data, ecological experiments and modeling approaches to examine the factors that drive disease emergence and biological invasions, and how changes in disease and invasion levels, in turn, affect community interactions and ecosystem processes in aquatic environments.

His current research program is directed at three inter-related focal areas: (i) Cross-scale drivers of disease emergence; (ii) The functional role of disease in ecosystems; and (iii) Interactions among invasions and habitat alteration. All have immediate relevance to both fundamental questions in ecology and applied conservation issues.

Becca Jacobson (Ballet: Dance) is Colorado Ballet’s Education Programs Manager and Principal Teacher. She administrates, teaches, and trains teachers for the Dance Renaissance after-school program in 15 schools, as well as numerous dance education programs in the Denver metro area.  Becca has her B.A. in Religious Studies and World Dance and Culture from the University of Colorado, and is currently pursuing her Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy and a certification in Play Therapy through Regis University. She is also active with two local professional dance companies, developing her skills as a dancer, teacher, and choreographer. She is a Teaching Artist with Think360 Arts and a member of the ArtReach Programs Advisory Committee.

Dr. Art (Arthur) Jones (Experts and Entertainers) is currently a clinical professor of culture and psychology at The Women’s College of the University of Denver. He received his Ph.D. degree in clinical psychology from the University of Iowa (Iowa City) in 1974 and has had a longstanding interest in the intersection of issues of psychological experience, ethnicity, race and culture. He has focused much of his professional and community work on the importance of racial and cultural issues in understanding and ameliorating mental illness, and he has published numerous professional articles dealing with this issue. Since the early 1990s he has also been immersed in scholarly research into the cultural and psychological history and functions of the spirituals, which are the sacred folk songs created and first sung by African peoples enslaved in America in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. He has used his skills as a trained singer to conduct lecture and concert programs on spirituals throughout the United States. This work has deepened his understanding of how cultural and racial issues have a profound impact on mental health. His book Wade in the Water: The Wisdom of the Spirituals, first published in 1993, was the winner of a First Book award from the Catholic Press Association of America. In 1998 he founded The Spirituals Project (www.spiritualsproject.org), an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based on the campus of The University of Denver, with a mission of preserving and revitalizing the music and teachings of the spirituals. He is currently writing a book about the pioneering work of Roland Hayes (1887 – 1977), the first African American concert singer to gain international acclaim, and an important interpreter of spirituals in formal concert performance. Art is particularly interested in the keen psychological and cultural intelligence that Hayes brought to his pioneering (and unheralded) work as a concert artist.

Jim Kneser (Dissecting Current Economic Issues) is in his twelfth year of leading economics classes as a volunteer; he has led over 40 classes with over 2,000 class members.  Jim has an undergraduate degree in economics from Ripon College and an MBA in finance from the Wharton School.  He is also a CPA and worked in private equity specializing in mergers, acquisitions, speculative markets, and corporate finance.  Jim enjoys researching the facts behind the news and comparing current economic news to historical events.  Participants will be encouraged to bring in their own research on breaking news. He is also a bridge nut and art groupie.

Sally Kneser (Bridge:  Intermediate Play of the Hand) is always ready to learn something new and help teach others. “I love to learn, and it’s so much more fun with friends around.” Sally is a Life Master in bridge and enjoys explaining the basics to others. As the Academy’s Director, Sally tackles operational and tactical issues in running the nonprofit. While volunteering with the Junior League, Sally chaired several committees, including the Facilitators.  In addition to managing the Academy’s business, she has volunteered as the “keeper of the files” for several nonprofits.  When not enjoying herself at the bridge table, she attends two book clubs and stops to smell roses in her gardens.

Cherity Koepke (Opera Colorado Takes the Stage), Director of Education and Community Programming for Opera Colorado, was drawn to music at an early age. A lyric soprano, she began singing at the age of 15 and has performed such roles as Guinevere (Camelot), Maria (The Sound of Music), Adelaide (Guys & Dolls), Eponine (Les Misérables) and Katherine (Taming of the Shrew). She attended and the University of New Mexico, where she earned her degree in Child Psychology. Koepke also studied theater, focusing on directing, improvisation and musical performance. She has directed numerous productions, including Inherit the Wind, My Fair Lady and Romeo and Juliet. In 2002, she worked as a volunteer for Santa Fe Opera’s student-produced opera project. One year later, Koepke was hired by the Santa Fe Opera as an artist-in-residence and served as Director, Librettist and Vocal Coach, guiding students as they created, produced and performed their own original opera. During the 2006 and 2007 seasons, Koepke performed with the Santa Fe Opera at the National Hispanic Cultural Center’s Disney Theater in Albuquerque

Barb Lundy (Poetry Workshop: Challenging Your Muse) gave herself poetry for her 50th birthday, picking up a dream she’d lost sight of while raising her children and nurturing her career.  In the intervening decade, she has had nearly 100 poems published in JAMA, the Potomac Review and The MacGuffin. Barb was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in poetry in 2005. Barb is listed in the Directory of American Poets and Fiction Writers, is a member of the Colorado Authors League and enjoys sharing her love of the craft through teaching, readings and as a member of three writing groups. Writing has always been part of her income-generating jobs and she taught writing for many years at Arapahoe Community College. Barb currently works with people with traumatic brain injuries and intellectual disabilities.

Len Marino (Cinema: Behind the Scenes), now retired from a career in advertising and marketing, has never abandoned his first love, the cinema.  A movie theater next to his mother’s shop served as his babysitter starting at age five, and an uncle who worked for a camera and projector company introduced him to old comic films: he was hooked for life!

Lois Martin (Experts and Entertainers) came to Denver by way of Philadelphia and Nebraska. She was a major in journalism at the University of Nebraska, before she moved to Pennsylvania while her husband was in medical school. She has been editor of internal publications for Campbell Soup Co. and Leeds and Northrup, both in the East. After the arrival of her four children, she founded the Aurora Sun Newspaper where she worked for 20 years as publisher. She was founding moderator of the Aurora Hospital Association, President of the Aurora Hospital District, Business Person of the Year for the Aurora Chamber of Commerce, and elected to the Benson Hall of Fame for Community Leadership.

Robin McNeil (Ballet: Music) began his study of piano at DePauw University at the age of four, taking lessons with Irene Soltas. He has a Bachelor of Music in Perform­ance from Indiana University and a Master of Music in Performance from the University of Illinois. He began his teaching career at the University of Illinois and then went to the University of South Dakota where he was Chairman of the Piano Department.

He has performed over three hundred concerts throughout the United States and has written many musicology book reviews for Choice magazine of the American Library Asso­ciation and Publisher’s Weekly, in addition to being an experienced music critic for newspapers. He is also a published poet, and the Denver composer, David Mullikin, has used his poems for art song texts.

In the past, Mr. McNeil has been thoroughly involved in arts management as the Executive Director of the Fine Arts Center of Clinton (Illinois), State Treasurer of the Association of Illinois Arts Agencies, and member of the Long Range Planning Committee of the Central Illinois Cultural Affairs Consortium. Mr. McNeil has been the Executive Director of the Denver Philharmonic Orchestra and has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Denver Philharmonic Orchestra Foundation.

Outside the sphere of music, Robin has raced Alfa Romeo and Ferrari automobiles and flown WW II vintage aircraft. He is a member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. Mr. McNeil now lives with his wife in Littleton where he teaches privately and continues to do research on the French composer Théodore Gouvy. Mr. McNeil is President of the Piano Arts Association, and an Honorary Member of the Institut Théodore Gouvy of Hombourg-Haut, France.

Longtime art enthusiast Joanne Mendes (DAM Great Art: The Asian Collection) has recently retired from a career spent organizing programs in art history in London and at the Denver Art Museum, for which she developed and coordinated adult courses and lecture series for more than a decade. Her passion for art was ignited when she and her petroleum engineer husband, Bob, moved to England, where she soon put her education degree to good use as co-director of Modern Art Studies, a company associated with the Institute of Contemporary Art. Joanne likes nothing better than to put people in touch with the most knowledgeable art experts available and currently continues to organize art-related education and travel opportunities for the DAM Contemporaries, one of the Denver Art Museum’s support groups.  She recently completed training on the Asian collection.

Dr. Walt Meyer (Legacy of the Crusades) is a retired “technocrat,” having spent 22 years in the weather field of the US Air Force and almost 20 years as a program manager for a defense contractor. Walt and wife Karyl have been married 46 years and have three grown children and four grandchildren.

Walt has had a long interest in the Crusades, which was rekindled by his teaching of a prior class at the Academy on Islam, since the Crusades have had considerable impact on relations between Islam and the West. He has done considerable reading on the Crusades and continues to find it to be a complex and intriguing subject.

Walt has a BS in Chemistry from Capital University, a PhD in Atmospheric Science from the University of Washington, and he is a graduate of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces and the Minnesota Management Academy.  He has served on many boards and task forces within the Lutheran Church and is a member of the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences, sponsored by the Graduate Theological Union of the University of California at Berkeley.   Dr. Meyer served as Adjunct Professor of Meteorology at Saint Louis University for one year and he has taught numerous Bible study classes.  Through these experiences, and through the Academy, he has found teaching to be one of his passions.

Bob Mendes (Winning Wars in the 21st Century) is a retired oil and gas engineer with a BS degree in Petroleum Engineering. He spent 35 years working in the oil business in both technical and managerial jobs.  Bob also is a founding partner in a start-up oil production company, and is active in the sailing club at the lake where his sailboat is moored.
Bob traveled the world in his career in the oil industry, finally retiring to the best place of all, Colorado.  Among his interests is military history, and he enjoys sharing this important subject with other Academy members.

Adrian Miller (Experts and Entertainers) graduated from Smoky Hill High School (1987), Stanford University, (A.B. 1991) and Georgetown University (J.D. 1995). A serious foodie, he serves as a Senior Policy Analyst for Gov. Bill Ritter, Jr.

Anne O’Connor (Ballet: Dance) is Colorado Ballet’s Director of Education & Outreach. In ten years, the Department has reached more than 600,000 students, teachers, parents, people with disabilities and lifelong learners in more than 23 Colorado counties. A certified Colorado educator with degrees in Literature and Secondary Education, O’Connor creates and teaches standards-based arts and arts-19integrated curriculum and interactive workshops. O’Connor has contributed to Dance/USA’s Emerging Leaders Taskforce, was a selected member of the Colorado Department of Education Standards Review Subcommittee for Dance, co-chairs the Denver Public Schools Arts Resource Council, and served on the Planning, Curriculum, and Leadership committees for Kunsmiller Creative Arts Academy.

Ralph Plimpton (How Successful Cultures Get That Way) was a manager and Vice President of Human Resources with Arco and Amoco until the early 1980s. Until retirement in 2003 he founded and operated an outplacement consulting firm serving corporate clients in 17 states in the mountain states and the West. During that period he and his associates worked with thousands of individuals in developing their best skills and capabilities in the process of finding new opportunities or careers. This will be the fifth course Ralph has taught at the Academy. His specialty (and passion) continues to be cultures and how they differ in their ability to produce positive results for the peoples of the world.

Dr. Sheila Porter (Disaster Giving: Do We Know What We Are Doing?) returned from travels and volunteer efforts in Africa and Cambodia with many questions about the real impact of international efforts on emerging countries. The string of recent worldwide disasters and the huge outpouring of charitable donations raised a few more questions worthy of discussion.  Her interest in genocide and the “darker” human emotions have earned her the Academy designation as the patron saint of solemn subjects.  With an undergraduate degree in art history, a PhD in Psychology and 30+ years as a clinical and forensic psychologist, she has joined those interests to also study and lecture on the impact of artists’ psychological makeup on their artistic production.  Dr. Porter has said, “I always return to the study of art & artists because it is good to remember that the world had always produced beauty in spite of itself.” Recently retired, she divides her time between the Academy ( where she chairs the Curriculum Committee), doing psychological evaluations of victims of torture seeking political asylum for Healthright International, and her grandchildren who make her laugh and look to the future.

Sharon Rouse (Get out Your Watercolors!  Explore – Create) is a retired art teacher, has taught adult watercolor and sketchbook classes and presented short watercolor workshops.  She uses her sketchbooks and journals to record ideas for future paintings.  Her work has been accepted into various shows and is in private collections.  In addition to her art, she is a docent at the Denver Art Museum and a supervisor for art student teachers at Metropolitan State College.

Laura Rubin (The Play’s the Thing: New Selections) is a retired public school speech therapist, who has facilitated play reading groups for seven years in Jacksonville, Florida and Denver.  Laura has enjoyed international and domestic travel with the meeting of new people.

Barbara Rush (Pathways to Spirituality) graduated from Colorado Christian University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Christian Leadership/Organizational Behavior and from Holmes Institute with a Master’s Degree in The Study of Higher Consciousness, as well as a Ministerial Degree in Global Religions.  She has been blessed with having the opportunity to live in eight different countries and has traveled extensively to over 42 countries around the world.  Barbara’s Special Focus Ministry has been called “Global Outreach Ministries,” for her passion and dedication to being part of the greater cause of our Global expansion of ONENESS throughout humankind.

Vee Sabel (Great Decisions in America’s Current Foreign Policy) is a confirmed foreign policy junkie and world traveler. She loves to hear the opinions of others and gain new perspective on issues. She is a skilled facilitator having been trained by and worked with Michael Doyle and Peter Strauss in their worldwide consultancy, Interaction Associates. While with them, she specialized in issues involving information flow and management structure. She has also worked with nonprofit boards throughout the United States on similar matters. Locally she is a member of the Institute for International Education, the Englewood Rotary Club, the Museum of Nature and Science, the Denver Art Museum, and numerous other nonprofit groups.  Ms. Sabel is also a designer with the Allred Architectural Group and often lectures at Arapahoe Community College.

Cyndi Sauvage (Chatting in Español) is a 15-year veteran of the publishing industry and has been involved in every aspect of writing, editing and producing a wide variety of magazines, books and newspapers (commercial and trade) in Colorado and New York City.   She is a worldwide traveler to over 75 countries, and lived for several years in Spain. She speaks Spanish and French, is learning Chinese and was the original author of Karen Brown’s Country Inn Guides to Spain and Portugal. A lifelong learner, she is always enrolled in a class or two that captures her interest. She is also a part-time teacher, freelance writer, editor and language tutor based in Denver, where she is a member of the Denver World Affairs Council and the Institute of International Education. Cyndi received her BA in Spanish and French from the University of Colorado–Boulder, where she also taught Spanish while pursuing a graduate degree in Latin American Literature.

Lea Schreiber (Experts and Entertainers) is a former high school and college chemistry teacher, small business owner and software marketing executive, now retired. Lea will explore how she deals with memories through painting her “safe places” and writing. She is a Hidden Child Holocaust survivor.

Lorraine Sherry‘s (The Garden as a Fine Art, Part 2) previous careers included radar systems analysis for The MITRE Corporation in Bedford, MA, and evaluation of educational technology grants for RMC Research Corporation in Denver. Dr. Sherry has written more than three dozen articles in peer-reviewed professional journals and seven book chapters on e-learning and instructional technology.  Since she retired in 2005, she has pursued her “true loves” of choral performance, perennial gardening, world travel, and collecting antique maps. She is a Colorado Master Gardener; has taught a course in “World Gardens as an Art Form”; and has written two City of Westminster grants to beautify the public areas of her townhome subdivision.  Her personal website is located at http://home.comcast.net/~lorraine.sherry/index.htm.

Milt Shioya (Bridge: Beginning Play of the Hand) is an avid bridge play who has proven himself at the bridge table with more than 1000 master points, and thus a Silver Life Master.  He retired from being the Tournament Assistant for the Denver Sectional Tournaments.  He has taught sessions on Introduction to Duplicate Bridge and has traveled widely to compete in regional and national tournaments.  Milt enjoys classical music, traveling, fine dining, hiking, and a good joke.

Ralph Stern (Western Concepts of God Through Time) has spent the past 40 years reading about theology, theodicy and comparative religion.  In 1985 he entered Hebrew Union College, Jewish Institute of Religion, a liberal school.  Following a year of study, he decided that he wanted more intensity and transferred to the Jewish Theological Seminary, which is conservative, and received a master’s in Jewish Philosophy.  By the time he left JTS in 1991 to become the executive director of the Allied Jewish Federation here in Denver, he had completed two-thirds of the course work needed for a doctorate.

Brad Trexell  (Opera Colorado Takes the Stage) is the Director of Artistic Planning for Opera Colorado in Denver.  Previously, he was Artistic Administrator at the Royal Danish Opera in Copenhagen, handling planning and casting for the new opera house which opened in 2004, as well as for the old Royal Theater. He was Artistic Administrator for San Francisco Opera from 2000 to 2005.  From 1984 to 2000 he filled various artistic planning, production and stage directing positions at San Francisco Opera, the Florentine Opera of Milwaukee, Seattle Opera, Portland Opera, Texas Opera Theater and Theatre Tesseract (Milwaukee).  He has served as a judge for the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in Seattle (Northwest Region), San Diego (District) and San Francisco (Pacific Region), as well as for the Tucker Awards, the Dallas Opera Guild vocal competition, and the Fritz and Lavinia Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition.

Dr. Leaf Van Boven (CU Science Sampler) is a psychological scientist who studies the interrelation between judgment, emotion, and decision making in everyday life. His research has three foci:  Emotional causes and consequences of judgment and decision making; Folk psychology: intuitions about psychological processes; and Hedonic Psychology.

Dr. Van Boven, along with Dr. Thomas Gilovich, examined whether increased happiness is associated more with spending your money on goods (that latest dress or impressive new smart phone) or an experience (going out for a meal, buying a ticket for a concert, or booking a vacation). The results clearly indicated that buying experiences made people feel better than buying products. Why? Goods tend to lose their appeal by becoming worn-out and out of date. In contrast, our memory of experiences easily becomes distorted over time (you edit out the terrible trip on the airplane and just remember those blissful moments relaxing on the beach), and also promote one of the most effective happiness-inducing behaviors – spending time with others.

Dr. Van Boven’s “59 Seconds Tip”: Buy experiences not goods. Go to a concert, movie, unusual place or strange restaurant: Anything that provides an opportunity to do things with others or tell people about it afterwards.

Despite his busy medical practice at St. Anthony Hospitals Senior Health Center, Dr. David Wallack (Impressionism, Part Deux) has spent more than sixty hours studying the impressionists in the last year.  Born and raised in New York City, he grew up in sight of Yankee Stadium and just a subway ride away from great art museums. David got his first introduction to art history at Columbia College and continues to indulge his love for art at museums in cities across the U.S. and around the world. Like art, baseball has remained a lifelong interest (fixation?) for him, so don’t be surprised when he drops baseball statistics into the conversation.  “I maintain an active outdoor lifestyle, and despite time constraints, I try to follow interests in reading (primarily contemporary novels and biographies), sports trivia, and film and art appreciation.”

Dr. Paulette Wasserstein (Contemporary Short Stories:  New Series!) has always loved sharing “a good read.”  Her career in public education, teaching high school English, afforded her the endless opportunities to open student thinking by way of the printed word.  In the early 1990s after many wonderful years of teaching reading and writing at Cherry Creek High School and adult education at the U. of P. departments of Communication and Masters of Education, Dr. Wasserstein was inspired to contribute to education on state and national levels.  With a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, she was contracted to work as an independent consultant with many school districts and administrators to create challenging curricula and to provide teacher training K-12 to raise literacy levels for students.

One of the Academy’s most accredited facilitators, Rear Admiral Richard (Dick) E. Young (Pearl Harbor & Midway to Tokyo Bay:  Critical Decisions) will be back to help us navigate the “what ifs” for the colorful and fascinating Teddy Roosevelt who famously described his successor, Taft, as a “a flubdub with a streak of the second-rate and common in him.”  Dick’s knowledge of both military history and politics make him ideally suited for an exploration of this period in our country.  Dick has a BA from the University of Michigan and graduated with honors from the United States Navy’s Officer Candidate School, after which he was ordered to the destroyer, USS MADDOX (DD731) where he served two tours in several official capacities.

After leaving active duty, he obtained his JD from the University of Michigan and was Assistant Editor of the Michigan Law Review.  His years in Denver have been no less impressive.  He practiced law and remained active in the Naval Reserve, as well as in numerous civic and political organizations.  His awards, citations and commendations are literally too many to mention but his greatest pride and pleasure are his wife Lorie, to whom he has been married over 50 years, and his four grown daughters.

Mary Zinn (Relationships: Your Challenges & Effective Problem Solving) has more than twenty years in the dispute resolution field as a practitioner, trainer and curriculum designer. Her presentations are known to be engaging and enlightening.

Ms. Zinn’s international work includes Capital Sisters International (Microcredit) and Seeking Common Ground’s Building Bridges for Peace program (Middle East). Her statewide work includes leading the campaign for Colorado’s Conflict Resolution Month each October and co-producing a quarterly radio program on Conflict Resolution Issues at KGNU in Boulder.

Ms. Zinn provides services of mediation, facilitation, conflict and anger management education and use of collaborative problem-solving models to neighbors, families, congregations, schools, agencies and businesses. Her professional organization memberships include Association for Conflict Resolution, Colorado Council of Mediation and Mediation Organizations, and Mediators Beyond Borders.