ARTS & MUSIC
FEMALE JAZZ VOCALISTS: THEIR CAREERS, BANDS & RECORDS
Course Leader: Lorenz Rychner
5 Wednesdays, Feb 17-March 16
Lecture, music, video, discussion
This class highlights the biographies, careers and recordings of some of the great female jazz singers: Ella Fitzgerald, Carmen McRae, “Sassy” Sarah Vaughn, Diane Reeves and many more! Watch, hear, and enjoy the best of the best in a relaxed setting. Tapping toes and snapping fingers are gladly admitted.
Lorenz Rychner, worked as a professional musician in Australia for 15 years before moving to LA to study orchestration and conducting and head the music synthesis program at the Grove School of Music. He is an Academy Board member.
THE VOICES OF BROADWAY
Course Leader: Don Culp
5 Thursdays, Feb 18-March 17
Lecture, listening, discussion
Hear audio and video examples of the great Broadway singers. From the Florodora Girls to George M. Cohan, to the great entertainers like Al Jolson and Eddie Cantor, to Ethel Merman and Mary Martin, Barbra Streisand, and Audra McDonald. Learn about the people who sang the songs and hear the original recordings of their music.
Don Culp was in sales and sales management and also managed The Magic Castle in Hollywood. He has studied singers and the art of singing since 1970.
WATERCOLOR IN ONE DAY STUDIO
Course Leader: Sharon Rouse
1 Tuesday, Feb 23
Get your head out of the snow and come paint with friends! Novices and seasoned artists alike will enjoy using their creativity and watercolor skills under the tutelage of The Academy’s esteemed watercolor artist. After registration, you will receive a list of suggested materials. Limited to 20.
Sharon Rouse’s skills as an experienced teacher of adult classes and workshops guide her as she works with students of various skill experiences. Her work appears in various shows and private collections.
DAM GREAT ART: NEW STORIES OF THE AMERICAN WEST
Course Leaders: Joanne Mendes, Marty Corren
4 Wednesdays, March 2-23
1:30-3:30 at the DAM
Docent-led tours at the DAM
The Denver Art Museum’s world-class collections of American Indian, Western and Spanish Colonial art provide a unique environment for exploring the colorful history of the American West. Significant new acquisitions and a visionary approach to collecting contemporary works are making the DAM an exciting center for examining these rich cultural traditions, says the New York Times. Join museum docents through this new narrative and current exhibitions:A Place in the Sun: Southwest Paintings of Walter Ufer & E. Martin Hennings, and REVOLT 1680/2180 by Cochiti Pueblo Indian artist Virgil Ortiz.
*Participants must be or become DAM members. Join by calling (720) 913-0130.
Art Lovers Extraordinaire: Long-time art enthusiast Joanne Mendes retired from a career spent organizing programs in art history in London and at the DAM. The DAM’s Academy liaison, Marty Corren, joined the museum as a volunteer in 2006 and recently received the Cile Bach Award for outstanding work as a DAM docent.
Course Leader: Sara Marsden, Various speakers
8 Thursdays, Feb 18-April 7
$95 (includes 2016 Great Decisions Briefings Book)
Lecture, discussion, video
The Great Decisions discussion groups are part of a nationwide program developed by the Foreign Policy Association. Each year thousands of Americans discuss and formulate their opinions on eight vital foreign policy issues. The 2016 topics are: Middle East Alliances, The Rise of ISIS, The Future of Kurdistan, Migration, The Koreas, The United Nations, Climate Change, Cuba and the U.S. 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, readings, and additional resources, including websites, are provided. Videos featuring experts in the field provide more information.
Required Reading: 2016 Great Decisions Briefing Book, which will be distributed in advance.
Sara Marsden became interested in world affairs through her mother Catherine’s dynamic world view. She studied at the University of Colorado and received Masters degrees from CSU and UCLA. Her interest resulted in a two-year stint in the Peace Corps in the Phillipines.
MAKING CITIES GREAT
Course Leader: Chuck Shannon, Various speakers
6 Thursdays, March 3-April 7
A mix of six architects and other experts will outline the elements of world-class cities. We’ll cover such topics as sustainability and historic preservation by looking at examples in Europe, Asia and a planned city in Africa. You will also learn about the profession of urban design, which is about making connections between people and places; movement and urban form; and other elements that affect the quality of daily life. Planning for cities and metropolitan areas also has implications for architecture, neighborhoods, economies and much more.
Chuck Shannon has been a division director for DRCOG, a vice president for Mile High United Way, a senior fellow at United Way of America, fellow at the Kennedy School at Harvard University, and trainer with the Asset-Based Community Development Institute at Northwestern University.
WHY DON’T THEY DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT?
Course Leader: Howard Roitman
4 Wednesdays, Feb 17-March 9
Environmental law is not black-and-white. And it’s in the news every day–whether it is the Gold King Mine release into the Animas River, Rocky Flats’ radioactive leftovers or EPA’s proposal to control coal-fired power plants. After an overview of laws and policies, we’ll explore Colorado case studies that reveal how the various laws have been applied and who pays the costs. You will act as the people who make these decisions. Learn what kinds of considerations enter into their thinking and how those thoughts play out at the federal, state, and local levels. In the end, you may be more concerned – or less concerned – but at least you’ll understand why “they” did what they did.
Howard Roitman retired in 2011 after 23 years at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and was a recognized national spokesman for state environmental agencies. Howard received his B. A. from Brooklyn College and his J.D. from Yale Law School.
FINANCIAL LITERACY FOR THE 21ST CENTURY
Course Leader: Eileen Sharkey
4 Thursdays, March 31-April 21
Global and personal economic storms are hard to avoid but you can improve your chances of survival. Use current, practical tools to audit your own financial situation and perform exercises to help you improve results. Get the basics, but also delve into advanced money management techniques about such topics as the psychology of money, cash flow, inflation, and investing. You will also learn to evaluate and establish medical and financial directives and communicate your end-of-life plans in case of cognitive decline. Remember what Will Rogers said: “Even though you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.” While this is a repeat course, we will incorporate new topics requested by students in the Spring 2015 offering. This course is not intended to address individuals’ issues, but to provide information about relevant, interesting and timely topics.
Eileen Sharkey, CFP®, has a practical and global view of finance and an easy-to-understand approach to the changing principles of money management. In 2010, Wealth Manager honored her as one of the nation’s 50 most influential women in finance.
GREAT LIBRARIES OF THE WORLD: PAPYRUS TO WIKI
Course Leader: Sue Walters
4 Thursdays, March 31-April 21
Remember books? Libraries were certainly among the first institutions of lifelong learning and have been, throughout the ages, the most important repositories of our history, knowledge and information. They are also catalysts for exploration and creativity. Learn about great libraries from around the world, of the past and present, from Scandinavia, Great Britain, Asia, South America, as well as libraries in the US. Always changing, they are taking on new exciting roles today. Look at various libraries in Colorado and visit the “Anythink Library” at the Rangeview Library District.
Suzanne Walters was the director of marketing and development for the Denver Public Library during the successful bond election and capital campaign to build the Central Library building. She has conducted seminars for libraries all over the world.
HEADWEAR AND HISTORY: CROWNS, CAPS, CLOCHES + CULTURE
Course Leader: Dr. Beverly Chico
4 Wednesdays, March 9-April 6 (SKIP March 23)
The history of hats? You’ll be surprised! Headwear is global, historical and culturally diverse. Headwear has been used to communicate political power, religious commitment, social status and wealth, military rank, aesthetic expression, disguise and much more. Learn about the crown as headdress, the US military hat toss; the turban, and women’s history through headwear.
Dr. Beverly Chico has been a leader and member of the Board of Trustees for Endowment of the Costume Society of America. She is also past president of the Denver Woman’s Press Club, National League of American Pen Women of Denver and more.
YOUR FAMILY 101: BEGINNING GENEALOGICAL RESEARCH
Course Leader: Leah Klocek
4 Tuesdays, Feb. 16-March 8
While technology and global interconnectedness has made this a golden age for aspiring family researchers and genealogists, getting started can be overwhelming. Learn how to take the first steps: organizing family papers, establishing a family tree and learning what sorts of records will be needed to trace your family through time. Examine the various resources available to students, both on and off the Internet, and how to use them. Then learn the most common mistakes and misunderstandings that afflict genealogists, and how to avoid these pitfalls. In the final session, you will take the floor to share what you have accomplished so far, where your research “brick walls” are, and get feedback on how to proceed.
Leah Klocek is a historical and genealogical researcher here in Denver. She is a founder and owner of a small business, Crossroads Historical Research.
A SECULAR HISTORY OF ANCIENT ISRAEL
Course Leader: Ted Stainman
6 Thursdays, Feb 18-March 24
Learn about ancient Israel through an archaeologist’s eyes, while you study evidence from history, culture and life of the Biblical period. Get a glimpse of what life was like from the period of the Patriarchs, moving into Palestine through the Exodus and conquests. Our study will continue with an examination of the monarchies of the two kingdoms of Israel and Judah from their establishment to their conquest by the Assyrians and the Babylonians. Hopefully in the time allowed we will finish with the post-exile reconstruction and end with the Roman times. While the Bible will be used as foundational text, the course is not a bible study but an academic approach to the life and times of this community.
Ted Stainman earned a master’s in Hebrew Letters from the Hebrew Union College, NYC, and attended the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel 1964-65 as a special overseas student. He taught American Religion, at Wesley College after retirement from 23 years as an Air Force chaplain.
AFTER THE FALL OF ROME:
EUROPE & SOUTHWEST ASIA, 500-1200 A.D.
Course Leader: Shellie Hochstadt
6 Wednesdays, Feb 17-March 23
The fall of the Roman Empire created a power void. The story of Rome’s recovery and the period called medieval is filled with war and ignorance although it is glorified today through romantic legends and lore of knights and damsels in distress. Europe would rebuild from a struggle between nobles (government power) and the church (religious power). Islam would dominate the eastern Mediterranean and information and technology would flow through Spain. Learn about the pathway that leads back to a greater Europe with the development of government, the Catholic Church, Islam, and the exchange of ideas through turbulent Spain. It culminates with the Crusades, the expansion of trade, technology, mistrust, and the rise of anti-Semitism. Issues from this clash remain in our collective fears today.
Shellie Hochstadt taught world history, government and economics until her retirement in 2010. She combines her interests in history, travel and reading into her teaching, where she endeavors to bring a thoughtful global perspective.
THE RISE OF CHINA & THE PARADOX OF THE WESTERN PACIFIC
Course Leader: Lew House
4 Tuesdays, Feb 16-March 8
China insists it must be recognized as a “great power” equal in global status to that of the United States. But its aggressive behavior in claiming sovereignty over the entire South China Sea and the modernization of its military seem to bring the claim of peaceful rise into question. After a brief review of China’s tumultuous history, we will examine China’s military—a force that is specifically designed to implement its great power claim. Although China is in the news every day, much of our information will be drawn from a wide variety of western and translated Chinese sources that will allow you to make your own decision concerning the true nature of China’s “peaceful rise.”
As well as being an astrophysicist in a former life, Lew House also has an MA in Military Studies. While working for GE, his MS thesis involved experiments for Admiral Rickover’s first submarine nuclear reactor.
THE LESSONS OF WAR
Course Leader: Dick Young
6 Wednesdays, Feb 17-March 23
The world’s recognized experts on war disagree on how it has affected us. Have the atom bomb and nuclear weapons changed whether we can continue to have wars, or perhaps even win one? Can the United States or any country take steps that would lead to the elimination of war? We will study the history of wars; how they have changed the world both for their destructiveness as well as the inventions and improvements that have made life better for mankind. But we will also look at what future conflicts may look like, and what that may mean to the future of civilization. This is a new course from one of The Academy’s renown military history experts.
Retired Admiral, lawyer, and political leader, Dick Young has taught courses on Pearl Harbor, the Pacific War, and American history at various Elderhostels and continuing education programs of several universities.
ALICE’S PIANO: A CONCERT PIANIST AND HER TIMES
Course Leaders: Anita Fricklas, Judy Schwartz, Robin McNeil
6 Tuesdays, March 1-April 5
$75 (includes two music CDs)
$65 (no CDs)
Reading, lecture, discussion
This musicology course is a unique offering that will delight readers and music lovers alike. The life, times, and music of Alice Herz-Sommer are chronicled in the nonfiction book, Alice’s Piano. It was her artistic skills as well as her character which helped her survive her years in Theresien-stadt, the concentration camp manipulated by the Nazis to appear to be something quite different from what it actually was. Listen to the works of Chopin, Liszt, Beethoven and others—with special attention to the Études—mastered and performed by Herz-Sommers. At the time of her death at the age of 110, Alice was the oldest Holocaust survivor. Allow her story and the music that saved her life to fill your heart. This is a repeat from Fall 2014.
Anita Fricklas’ career included years as Director of Education at Temple Sinai and the American Jewish Committee. Anita has received many awards for her work in diversity, advocacy and bigotry reduction. Judy Schwartz is a career teacher and counselor having taught at Temple Sinai and Denver’s East High School, where she also coached the debate team. Over the years, Judy has taught in Guadalajara, Mexico, and she served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippine Islands. Lecturer: Robin McNeil has taught music at the University of Illinois and the University of South Dakota.
CONSTANTINE’S SWORD PART 2
Course Leader: Ralph Stern
7 Tuesdays, Feb 16-April 19 (SKIP March 22, 29, April 5)
Lecture, discussion, *Prerequisite
An extension of a course offered last fall that explored the history of anti-Semitism as laid out in the book “Constantine’s Sword” by the ex-priest James Carroll. As we continue our reading, we will discover it is really two books—one about the long and difficult relationship between Judaism and Catholicism, and the other about Carroll’s own struggle with his faith and relationship with the church. *Those who did not take the first part of the class are welcome to join this course if they read the first half of the book before Feb. 16. This course is a repeat from previous semesters.
Required: James Carroll, Constantine’s Sword: The Church and The Jews – A History (Mariner Books, 2002)
Ralph Stern has spent the past 45 years reading about theology, theodicy and comparative religion. In 1986, he entered the Jewish Theological Seminary and received a Masters in Jewish Philosophy.
PULITZER PRIZE WINNING POETS YOU PROBABLY HAVEN’T READ
Course Leader: Dr. Rex Brown
6 Wednesdays, March 16-April 20
In 2016, the Pulitzer Prize Board will celebrate its 100th year of honoring outstanding American writers. Many of the poets who have received Pulitzer Prizes have become world famous—Robert Frost, Carl Sandburg and Mary Oliver. But many more are not household names despite their power to move and inspire readers. Participants in this course will read and discuss the work of some of these richly rewarding but perhaps lesser known poets. The poems and some of the poets’ thoughts about their prose will be available on the Academy’s course materials site. You will read a few each day and share your reactions in a facilitated conversation each week.
After earning advanced degrees in literature, Dr. Rex Brown taught at the University of Iowa, Heidelberg College, and the University of Denver, from which he retired in 2010. He has a lifelong interest in literature, philosophy, art and their intersections in our culture and our lives.
THE IMMIGRANT EXPERIENCE IN LITERATURE AND FILM
Course Leader: Dr. Jim Mingle
5 Wednesdays, March 23-April 20
Lecture, video, discussion, reading
The immigrant experience has long been a powerful subject in literature and film. Through novels and short stories, we can look beyond the statistics and the political debates of the day and understand the deeper human experience of being an immigrant. We will read excerpts from literature, watch film clips and discuss some of the best contemporary writers in this genre. In order to examine the different experiences of immigrant groups, the course is organized by country of origin: India and Pakistan, Ireland, Vietnam, and Mexico.
REQUIRED READING: Colm Toibin, Brooklyn: A Novel. (Scribner), 2009.
Dr. Jim Mingle has been a long-time facilitator for the Academy.His career was spent as director of a national association for university presidents and state officials concerned with higher education policy.
RUSSIAN LITERATURE AND REALITY
Course Leader: Dr. Mary Schaeffer Conroy
Tuesdays and Thursdays (6 total, April 5-21)
Lecture, films, Q&A
Some readers mistakenly view Russian literature as a reflection of reality. This is true to some extent, but it is reality displayed through the prism of the author—rather than reality grounded in archival documents. Compare selected literary pieces to historical reality through the elegance of Pushkin’s play, Boris Godunov or Eugene Onegin; Gogol’s play, The Inspector General; Chekhov’s play, The Three Sisters; and Kataev’s novel, Time, Forward. Some films will be screened in class with discussion to follow.
World expert on late imperial Russia, Dr. Mary Schaeffer Conroy has given numerous lectures in Russia and elsewhere. She has published several books and is an emeritus Professor at the University of Colorado, Denver.
Required Readings: Reeve, F.D., Nineteenth Century Russian Plays – An Anthology (The Norton Library, 1973). Please choose one of the plays to read.
WRITE TO SAVE YOUR LIFE
Course Leader: Patricia Cox
6 Tuesdays, March 15-April 19
“Anyone who physically and emotionally outlasts childhood has something to write about forever,” proclaims author Lou Willett Stanek. You’ll agree once you discover the rich vein of stories in your past and experience the joy of preserving these treasured tales. We’ll encourage each other in class and tackle writing at home. Reading your work aloud will prove a powerful affirmation, as will listening to others. This exchange is an effective way to improve your writing. Join this group, capped at 12, to learn how to transform your memories into memoirs. Repeat of Fall 2015.
Patricia Cox has taught writing for the Denver Public Schools and Cherry Creek School District. She has published three books, the most recent is I’m Sorry…What Was the Question?
CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN SHORT STORIES
Course Leader: Dr. Paulette Wasserstein
6 Thursdays, March 3-April 7
Explore fascinating stories with stimulating participation-friendly discussions. If you love great literature, you will appreciate the artistry that goes into the creation of the prose found in The Best American Short Stories 2012, edited by Tom Perrotta. Each week, the class examines one or two memorable stories, teasing out the meanings of each story and building a greater understanding of the short story as an art form. Because contemporary authors write the short stories, their subject matter and dilemmas will stir great discussion about the world.
REQUIRED READING: Tom Perrotta, ed., The Best American Short Stories 2012, (Mariner Books) 2012.
Dr. Paulette Wasserstein, career teacher of English and education consultant, loves the exchange of ideas and sharing “a good read.” This is her 15th term of teaching this class for The Academy, which sells out every time.
A HAIKU WORKSHOP
Course Leaders: Ginny Hoyle, Art Elser
6 Tuesdays, March 1-April 5
Haiku teaches us to see beauty everywhere, even where we least expect it. Join us as we consider haiku’s connection to nature and the influence of Shintoism on Japanese culture through the ages. In the spirit of traditional Japanese haiku groups, we will each follow our own path, writing haiku that are true to our experience of the world and its beauty. Naturalist Art Elser will help us appreciate what nature’s up to, right under our noses on the high plains, as spring unfolds. Come prepared to share your work and appreciate the work of others. Note: While this is a repeat of the popular course offered previously, it keeps evolving, so returning participants will find a familiar structure along with new ways to explore. And first-time participants will begin fresh, in good company.
REQUIRED READING: Robert Hass, The Essential Haiku, (The Eco Press), 1994.
Ginny Hoyle’s poems have appeared in literary journals and been featured in major art exhibits. She kept a daily haiku journal from 2000 – 2003. Art Elser retired after 20 years as an Air Force pilot and 30 as a technical writer. In 2014, his chapbook, We Leave the Safety of the Sea, received the Colorado Authors’ League Poetry award.
RE-IGNITE YOUR CURIOSITY! SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS FOR GRANDCHILDREN
Course Leader: John Paull
6 Tuesdays Feb 23-March 29
Stimulate your inner scientist and learn how you can ignite your grandchildren’s curiosity! Hands-on experiments and challenges with everyday recycled resources will provide you with ideas and inspiration for things to do with your grandkids. The last two classes (March 22 and 29) are scheduled to coincide with Spring Break (March 22: Jefferson County, Boulder Valley; March 29: Denver, Cherry Creek) so bring the (grand) kids!!
John Paull is a long-time science teacher of kids, teachers and parents and recent Channel 7 “Everyday Hero” for his science teaching and consulting in the schools.
THE WEBB SPACE TELESCOPE: FORWARD TO THE BEGINNING
Course Leader: Dr. Jim Eraker
6 Wednesdays, March 9-April 13
The James Webb Space Tele-scope is 100 times more powerful than the Hubble Space Telescope, and is designed to give us a first glimpse back to the beginning of the universe. Learn how this telescope is designed and how it will operate and explore in space after launch in 2018. The lectures will use narrative suited for a general audience to explain the evolution of the universe and our place in the cosmos. Repeat from Spring 2015.
REQUIRED READING: Your favorite Internet search engine with the words, “James Webb Space Telescope.”
Dr. Jim Eraker received a Ph.D. in Physics at the University of Chicago in experimental astrophysics in 1981, where he studied with astrophysicists Chandrasekhar, Parker, Schramm and Simpson. He worked at Ball for 25 years as a staff consultant, where he provided technical leadership to design, build, and test the ultra-cold electronics for the Webb telescope.
MAKING AND SHARING SOUND END-OF-LIFE CHOICES
Course Leader: Dr. George Ho
8 Thursdays (Feb 18-April 7)
$85-Includes the required class workbook. You must own, share or borrow one to participate.
Discussion, Lecture, Writing
We will all die one day, but we need not make a graceless exit. Instead, we can prepare for death in a personalized and unique way. By developing our own sense of what end-of-life can and should look like, we can share decisions with our family and friends. We’ll consider the options we have, the choices we face and the wishes we want to pass on. This is not a “how-to” course or a substitute for medical or legal advice. It’s an opportunity to appreciate the nuances of the dying process, to consider the difficulties surrounding end-of-life issues, and to develop new perspectives by sharing our concerns in a safe setting.
REQUIRED READING: End-of-Life Notebook, included in tuition and distributed the first day of class.
Now retired from a career in teaching and medical practice, Dr. George Ho, Jr. focused his special expertise on the areas of internal medicine, arthritis treatment and palliative end-of-life care.
WHAT’S UP DOC? MEDICAL ISSUES FOR 55+
Course Leader: Drs. Woody Emlen, George Ho, various speakers
5 Wednesdays, Feb 17-March 23
(SKIP March 2)
Hear from a different physician specialist each week to explore the effects of aging on the body and for an overview of medical issues relevant to our population. Areas to be covered this semester are different or have a different focus from the areas covered in Spring 2015 and include: Diabetes, Back Pain, Mental Illness, and others.
All speakers are practicing or recently retired physicians from the greater Denver area and include Dr. John Scott, Geriatrics; Dr. Gary Ogin, Pain Specialist; Dr. Bob Sargent, Ophthalmology; Dr. Kip Doran, Psychiatry; and Dr. Michelle Cassara, Endo-crinology. This course is not intended to address individuals’ medical problems or provide specific medical advice, but to cover relevant, interesting and timely topics in the medical field.
CUTTING EDGE RESEARCH FROM THE ANSCHUTZ MEDICAL CAMPUS
Course Leaders: Dr. Woody Emlen. Dr. George Ho
Speakers: Various experts from Anschutz Medical Campus
6 Tuesdays Feb. 23-with Field Trip on March 29 or April 5
Join us as researchers from Anschutz present some of the exciting research that is happening in our own neighborhood. This class is a continuation of the classes offered in Spring and Fall 2015, but will bring us completely new speakers. A field trip to the WELLS center will be held on March 1; depending on enrollment numbers, participation may be limited to members who did not go in Spring 2015. The course is collaboration between The Academy and the Office of Development at Anschutz Medical Campus.
Dr. Woody Emlen was Professor of Medicine and Immunology at University of Washington and CU Health Sciences Center with a practice in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology. Now retired from an active career in teaching and medical practice, Dr.
George Ho, Jr. focused his special expertise on the areas of internal medicine, arthritis treatment and palliative end-of-life care. Both men are Academy Board members.
EXPERTS AND CONTROVERSIES: ACADEMY TOWN HALL
Course Leader: Rosalie Goldman, Various speakers
6 Wednesdays, Feb 17-March 23
Illuminate your current-events news with challenging issues in an easy-to-digest format with no required reading. Each class session will cover a different topic, with guest speakers’ presentations followed by discussion and Q&A. Speakers will present opposing viewpoints, when appropriate. New 2016 topics include: Immigration, Marijuana (from a public health perspective); Religious Liberty; Corporate Public Speech and Social Responsibility; Atheism and Secularism; and Capital Punishment (updated). These compelling issues are sure to generate new information, new ideas and maybe new realities.
Rosalie Goldman, a semi-retired special education teacher and community volunteer, has a life-long interest in current events, especially civil and human rights.
CRIMINAL JUSTICE: CURRENT ISSUES IN CONTEXT
Course Leader: Dr. Barry Mahoney
6 Wednesdays, March 9-April 13
During 2015, politicians in both parties have been proposing reforms in criminal justice. The deaths of black men in Ferguson and elsewhere have exacerbated long-simmering resentments about police practices, and more broadly, about harsh sentencing practices that have led to swollen prison and jail populations. Current policies and proposed reforms will be considered in light of the historical roots of key issues. Topics covered will include mass incarceration; drug policies; wrongful conviction of innocent persons; race and justice; money and justice; and prospects for meaningful reform. We’ll discuss possible changes in policies, practices, and law, and the impacts that such changes could have on the goal of a fair and effective justice system.
Dr. Barry Mahoney has worked on criminal justice issues for over 50 years as a litigating attorney, researcher, teacher, and consultant. He is an author, international teacher, and has received awards for distinguished service from leading national organizations.
FROM A TO Z
Course Leader: Phil Keenan
5 Thursdays, March 3-31
Was the last version of your will written on a yellow legal pad with coffee rings and the faint smell of cigarette smoke and Tang? All kidding aside, legal hardships are usually caused by the lack of a will or power of attorney. Take a look at traditional estate planning for individuals and couples, learn how to deal with estates subject to estate tax, and structure a plan to reduce or avoid those taxes. More topics include making charitable gifts, an in-depth look at charitable trusts, and the use of marital agreements (“prenups” and “postnups”), and their parameters. This course is not intended to address individuals’ issues, but to cover relevant, interesting and timely topics.
Phil Keenan is a founding partner of the law firm of Ambler & Keenan, which specializes in estate planning, probate and trust administration, and the taxation of trusts and estates. He has the highest peer reviewed rating from Martindale-Hubbell, and has been selected a Colorado Super Lawyer.
HARD CHOICES: MEDICAL ETHICS FOR OUR TIMES
Course Leader: Dr. Jean Abbott
6 Thursdays, Feb 18-March 24
Ethical dilemmas arise when values conflict and there is no one right answer. We will learn approaches to thinking about these dilemmas and we will discuss a diversity of problems seen in the hospital and our everyday lives. Besides instructor presentations, small groups will discuss and analyze problems and share with the larger group. Some of our topics will include ethical challenges regarding genetic advances, public health threats like Ebola, informed consent, confidentiality, and physician-aided dying.
Facilitator: Dr. Abbott is a retired emergency medicine physician, faculty member at the Center for Bioethics and Humanities on the Anschutz Medical Campus, and the lead for the University Hospital Ethics Consult Services.
SURPRISING TRENDS IN WAR AND PEACE
Course Leader: Dr. Bob Rose
8 Tuesdays, Feb 16-April 5
While it may not be apparent from the daily news, worldwide, casualties from armed violence have significantly decreased over the past 25 years. Does this mean we have learned the lessons in war? Look at the various reasons for this trend, including the decline of colonialism, the end of the Cold War, and the rise of globalization and international diplomacy. We’ll dissect the growing body of research in such areas as conflict resolution, war prevention and peacekeeping.
Course Leader Dr. Bob Rose, a retired school psychologist, has passions including education, peace studies, international development, conflict resolution, and reconciliation. He has volunteered with NGO’s in the Middle East, Central America, Southeast Asia, and Africa.
CONVERSATIONS WITH JUDGES: HOW COURTS ENSURE JUSTICE
Course Leader: Dr. Ellie Greenberg, various speakers
8 Tuesdays, Feb 16-April 5
Colorado justices, judges and lawyers, are offering an inside view of the workings of state and federal courts. The eight sessions, which underscore the importance of fair and impartial courts in our democratic form of government, have been designed by Our Courts Colorado, a joint initiative through the Colorado Judicial Institute and the Colorado Bar Association. Course topics include: Our State Courts; Our U.S. Courts; Law and Order: The Life of a Criminal Case; See You in Court: The Life of a Civil Lawsuit; Divorce in Colorado Courts; An Economic Fresh Start: Bankruptcy Basics; Introduction to Immigration Laws and Courts; and Lincoln’s Legacy of Equality and Liberty.
Author, teacher, and educator, Dr. Ellie Greenberg developed and led University Without Walls in the 1970s. The award-winning Our Courts presentations have been presented to more than 15,000 Coloradans and the Academy since 2008.
MAD OR BAD
Course Leaders: Steve Bernard and Sheila Porter
6 Thursdays, Feb 18-March 24
Two long-time course leaders at the Academy collaborate to explore the intersection of psychology and the law as they examine the controversial topic of the insanity defense. With the escalation of events involving violence and mental health, too little is understood about how the worlds of criminal justice and mental illness are affected by the rules that govern them. You’ll follow three actual cases, and learn about psychological evaluations, expert witnesses, the jobs of defense and prosecuting attorneys, and the difference between the clinical and legal definitions of ‘insanity’. You will have the opportunity to weigh the evidence, discuss the cases and render a verdict before we learn how each of the cases played out.
Judge Steven Bernard served as a prosecutor for 29 years and now presides on the Colorado Court of Appeals, getting up-close and personal with the Constitution. Sheila Porter, PhD, combines an art history degree with over 30 years’ experience as a clinical and forensic psychologist. Sheila chairs the Academy’s Curriculum Committee and volunteers with projects in Cambodia and Africa.
PHOTOGRAPHY FOR THE PROFESSIONAL VACATIONER
Course Leader: Joe Klocek
5 Tuesdays: Feb 16-March 15
What kinds of images do you want to capture on your next vacation? Whether it’s beautiful sunsets, family activities, or just people pictures without using a selfie stick, this is the course for you. Explore all major controls of interchangeable lens cameras, using live demos from the vacations you are planning as examples. Learn the same photographic techniques used by National Geographic photo-graphers: image quality, freezing action, depth-of-field, lighting, editing, color accuracy and more. You’ll be ready for your next vacation, so when you get back that great picture you took of a sunset isn’t a happy accident.
Joe Klocek has been a professional in the photographic industry for 10 years and a guest speaker at photo clubs, the Amazing Aging Exposition, and the Colorado Travel and Leisure Exposition.
CHATTING EN ESPAÑOL: Beginner 1
Course Leader: Susan Blake-Smith
6 Wednesdays, Feb 17-March 23
Tailored to fit beginners as well as those with “un poquito” of previous Spanish language experience, this class will include the most basic vocabulary, sentence structures and phrases essential for travel and casual conversation. Will you become fluent in six weeks? No, but you will have fun! The Academy’s spring term has three Spanish courses so that you can gain greater confidence in this musical and increasingly important language. Class is limited to 25. Is this class a fit? Llámame at (303) 912-9988.
Susan Blake-Smith grew up in Mexico City and enjoys sharing her love of the Mexican language, history and culture. She spent her career in the travel industry and has logged many hours as a community volunteer.
REQUIRED READING: Participants must buy their own book. Richmond, Dorothy. Practice Makes Perfect Spanish Verb Tenses, McGraw-Hill, 2010. It’s usually under $15.
CHATTING EN ESPAÑOL: Beginner 2
Course Leader: Dr. Linda Gordon
6 Wednesdays, Feb 17-April 6, (SKIP March 9, March 30)
This advanced-beginner class is for those who have taken some Spanish, but want to “brush up” on grammar and vocabulary and keep building conversational skills. Gain greater confidence in this musical and increasingly important language. Participants should be comfortable with the present tense, familiar with the past tenses and ready to sharpen their communication skills through reading, speaking and listening. Class is limited to 15. Is this class a fit? Llámame at (303) 399-8241.
REQUIRED READING: Participants must buy their own book. Richmond, Dorothy. Practice Makes Perfect Spanish Verb Tenses, McGraw-Hill, 2010. It’s usually under $15.
An educator for 36 years, Dr. Linda Gordon retired recently from being a school principal. As the former director of an English-as-a-second-language school in Mexico City for 10 years, she’s excited about working with adults who want to learn.
CHATTING EN ESPAÑOL: Intermediate
Course leader: Sandy Stolar
8 Wednesdays, Feb 17-April 6
¡Continuamos la conversación! The class will be conducted primarily in Spanish, with pauses to look at some important grammar. Themed conversations will build vocabulary and the confidence to speak in complete sentences in real-life situations. Si tú puedes pedir una margarita, describir las cosas que más te gustan, y preguntar como llegar al museo and want to dust it off and trot it out—and have a lot of fun doing it—esta es la clase para ti. Limited to 15 participants. To see if this class is a fit for you, llámame at (303) 708-9716.
REQUIRED READING: Participants must buy their own book. Richmond, Dorothy. Practice Makes Perfect Spanish Verb Tenses, McGraw-Hill, 2010. It’s usually under $15.
Sandy Stolar taught Spanish for 25 years in middle school, high school and community college. She has traveled extensively in Mexico, Spain and South America.
Course Leader: Scott Henke
March 10, 24, April 7, 21
First class free; each of the following classes $10 each
Learn some basics or new tips about your computer and smart-device from a pro!
3/10: Basic Computer Terms, Troubleshooting, and an Overview of Future Classes (free to members.)
3/24: Essential Smart Phone Apps
4/7: One-on-One: Financial Smartphone Apps and Credit Report. Bring your phone, laptop.
4/21: Previous classes in this course will be surveyed for the topic of this week’s class.
Scott Henke, has been a consultant for 32 years. His company, Onsite Consulting, offers PC consulting, network troubleshooting, repair, virus and spyware solutions, free off-site backup, remote emergency help and many other computer services.
BRIDGE: PLAY! PLAY! PLAY! FOR BEGINNERS AND INTERMEDIATES
Course Leader: Kerry O’Gorman
9 Tuesdays, Feb 16-April 12
Exercises, Practice Hands
Practice your skills with a wide range of pre-set bridge hands, each with one or more lessons or challenges. These hands have all been previously used in the Academy’s fine bridge courses, and have proven to be excellent teaching exercises for the novice or novice-intermediate bridge player. Bidding and play situations will stretch your skills and help cement important bridge concepts. There will be helpers available to explain how each hand should be bid/played and why. Before each session, you will hear a brief presentation identifying the concept in the day’s hands.
REQUIRED READING: Audrey Grant, Play of the Hand in the 21st Century, (American Contract Bridge League), 2007.
A bridge player since he was quite young, Kerry O’Gorman has assisted and substituted at times for Sally Kneser in her Bridge courses for many years. He has a lifetime of experience as a presenter/teacher, primarily in corporate training.
BRIDGE: LEARN THE 2/1 CONVENTION
Course Leader: Sally Kneser
6 Tuesdays, Feb 16-March 22
Exercises, Practice Hands
The 2 Over 1 Game Force system is simply an adaptation of Standard American. It became popular because it can simp-lify your bidding, not complicate it. These lessons involve many “How-to” situations: suit preference, shape, limit raise, bigger hand, slam interest, showing an ace or king, and much more. It’s a great opportunity for partners, groups, or solos to cement their agreements. Note the early start time and that there is required weekly reading for this course.
REQUIRED READING: Grant, Audrey & Rodwell, Eric, 2 Over 1 Game Force, Baron Barclay Bridge, 2009.
BRIDGE: 3 ESSENTIAL CONVENTIONS FOR ADVANCED PLAYERS
Course Leader: Sally Kneser
3 Tuesdays, March 29-April 12
Exercises, Practice Hands
Whether you play 2 Over 1 Game Forcing or not, there are three essential conventions for intermediate-advanced players: fourth suit forcing, new minor forcing, and Jacoby 2 notrump. These three conventions solve many bidding problems and can make life easier at the bridge table. Learn both when to use the conventions and, more importantly, what your options and priorities are when your partner uses the conventions. Many people know only step one of the bidding “dance” and this course will explain how to fine tune what you know about your partner’s hand. Note the early start time.
Everyone’s favorite bridge instructor, Sally Kneser takes her passion for bridge to the classroom with humor, patience and clarity. She is a member of two book clubs, a grandma and the former director of The Academy.
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.
Steven Bernard was a prosecutor for 28 years. For the past five years he has been a judge on the Colorado Court of Appeals, where he has presided for over five years. He has frequently considered constitutional questions during his career. The Constitution is the document upon which our system of government is based and Steve believes that education about this seminal document is essential to an understanding of our system of government, and to understanding the rights of citizens.
Susan Blake-Smith 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 sharing her love of Mexico and its beautiful language.
Dr. Beverly Chico has lectured for more than 40 years at Maryland and Colorado colleges. A nationally recognized expert and collector of international headwear, her collection has more than 600 items from 100 countries. She has been a visiting professional at the Smithsonian Institute; consultant to the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Ottowa; participant at the Folger Institution; and interviewed by the BBC program “Outlook” and most recently, in The Denver Post. She served on the Costume Society of America’s Board of Directors and has authored many encyclopedia entries. In 2013, she published, Hats and Headwear Around the World: A Cultural Encyclopedia, (ABC-Clio).
Dr. Mary Schaeffer Conroy is Emeritus Professor at the University of Colorado at Denver. She has focused her professional research on the politics in Late Imperial Russia and health care in Imperial and Soviet Russia. A popular teacher of Russian and East European history at UCD, she has won many teaching awards. Dr. Conroy’s first publications concerned Peter A. Stolypin. Stolypin served as governor of several Russian provinces at the turn of the 19th-20th centuries and, from 1906-1911, served as Minister of Internal Affairs (Imperial Russia’s largest ministry that supervised the police, certified medical and pharmaceutical personnel and institutions, and dealt with national minorities, local government, and peasants and agriculture). Simultaneously, Stolypin served as Chair of the Council of Ministers–a quasi Prime Minister in the government of Tsar Nicholas II. Most famous for his agrarian reforms, which attempted to replace semi-socialistic peasant communes with private farmsteads, Stolypin also sponsored many other reforms. He was the point man in dealing with the Russian Parliament, newly instituted in 1906. A proponent of law and order, he attempted to the crush revolutionaries’ terrorist activities and curb independence movements of the Finns, Poles, Ukrainians, and other minorities. Stolypin was assassinated in September 1911, while attending the opera in Kiev. A pariah in Soviet times, Stolypin is idolized by many post-Soviet politicians, most notably, President Vladimir Putin. In September 2011, the centenary of Stolypin’s assassination, Dr. Conroy was invited to Russia by a wealthy businessman and former Duma member to give 10 lectures at conferences held in various parts of Russia, Lithuania, and Ukraine. In December 2011 she gave a talk at a conference hosted by the Civic Forum in Moscow. In April 2012, Dr. Conroy participated in a conference in Moscow commemorating the 150th anniversary of Stolypin’s birth. This talk is included in a book published by the current Russian State Duma. In June 2012 Dr. Conroy was invited to the Economic Forum in St. Petersburg. In October/November 2012, Dr. Conroy switched gears to give a paper on Russian-American Pharmaceutical Relations at the Medical University in Grodno, Belarus.
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 has a special interest and experience in the modern and contemporary collections at the Denver Art Museum.
Patricia Cox 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. Patricia is a member of the National League of American Pen Women, Inc.
Don Culp originally intended to be a commercial artist. He attended The Art Center College in Los Angeles then, as young men often do, became sidetracked and worked in a steel mill, attempted an unsuccessful career as a popular singer, drove a tourist limousine, managed a Good Humor Ice Cream branch, and was General Manager of The Magic Castle in Holly-wood before spending the next 46 years with Executive Car Leasing in Los Angeles. Don became addicted to recorded opera in 1970 and the passion has never diminished. His other interests include photography, computers, and reading (biographies, U.S. History and early American vaudeville.) After the death of his wife in 2010, he moved to Aurora, Colorado where he lives as quietly as his somewhat gregarious nature allows.
Art Elser retired after 20 years as an Air Force pilot and 30 as a technical writer. His poetry been published in Owen Wister Review, High Plains Register, Harp Strings Poetry Journal, Emerging Voices, The Avocet, Open Window Review, and A Bird in the Hand: Risk and Flight. His chapbook, We Leave the Safety of the Sea, received the Colorado Authors’ League Poetry award for 2014.
Dr. Woody Emlen is a graduate of Stanford University and the University of California (San Diego) School of Medicine. He was Professor of Medicine and Immunology at the University of Washington and the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center for almost 20 years, where his practice was in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology (Arthritis) and his research focused on inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. In the late 1990s, Dr. Emlen left academic medicine to pursue a career in biotechnology, serving as Vice President of Scientific Affairs for Palo Alto-based InterMune Pharmaceuticals. In 2004 he co-founded his own Denver-based biotechnology company, Taligen Therapeutics, serving as CEO until the Company’s acquisition in 2011. He currently is retired from medicine but serves on the Boards of several early-stage Biotechnology companies.
Jim Eraker received a Ph.D. in Physics at the University of Chicago in experimental astrophysics in 1981. While there he studied with some of the seminal figures in 20th century astrophysics, Chandrasekhar, Parker, Schramm and Simpson. Recently Jim completed a 25 year career as a Ball Staff Consultant where he provided technical leadership to design, build, and test the ultra-cold electronics for the (far-infrared) James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).
After graduating from high school, Anita Fricklas attended Boston University. Her career included many years as Director of Education at Temple Sinai. She later became the Executive Director of the American Jewish Committee. Most of her work has revolved around diversity, advocacy, and bigotry reduction. As a volunteer she has dedicated many hours at the Lupus Foundation of Colorado and the Arthritis Foundation writing columns about living well with chronic illness and encouraging the Federal delegation to prioritize lupus and arthritis in doling out research dollars. Anita has received many awards for her work. Two that stand out are the Anita Fricklas Award for Excellence in Education being established at Temple Sinai and Mayor Wellington Webb declaring December 6 2002 as Anita Fricklas Day.
Rosalie Goldman, a semi-retired Special Education teacher and a community volunteer, has a lifelong interest in current events and civil and human rights. She wanted to organize and facilitate this course to offer Academy members this forum to gain information and hear divergent views on contemporary topics.
After 35 years as an educator, Linda Gordon recently retired as a principal. She lived in Mexico City for ten years, serving as director of an English as a Second Language school. She’s excited to work with eager Spanish learners!
Ellie Greenberg 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.
Onsite Consulting owner, Scott Henke, has been featured on 9 News, Fox 31, and the radio for his expertise. He has taught classes for over 10 years through the Academy and has taught over 5,000 people through Adult Education over the past 20 years. His company, Onsite Consulting, offers PC consulting, PC and network troubleshooting, repair, virus and spyware solutions, free offsite backup, remote emergency help and many other computer services. His classes are designed with the beginner in mind. He is always available for free advice via email firstname.lastname@example.org
In order to stay engaged in lifelong learning, Dr. George Ho, discovered the Academy through its writing courses during the Spring term 2010. For 40-plus years, he worked in Rheumatology with an additional subspecialty interest and training in Hospice and Palliative Medicine. Now retired, he welcomes the opportunity to apply that professional knowledge, experience and talent to helping members of the Academy navigate the health care system through information and self-exploration. Since 2011, he has facilitated the Academy course entitled Making and Sharing Sound End-of-Life Choices which he will continue to provide as long as the demand exists.
Shellie Hochstadt graduated from the University of Rhode Island with a degree in history, and a minor in political science. She was a divisional merchandise manager for a department store until 1994, when she returned to her core interest and passion for world history. She taught AP World History, AP Government, and economics until her retirement in 2010. She combines her interests in history, travel, and reading into her teaching, where she endeavors to bring a thoughtful global perspective.
Lew House has given several lectures on the Rise of China’s Military and was recently the keynote speaker on the topic at a gathering in Vancouver, BC. Among many other subjects, he has an avid interest in geopolitics and has published research on “The Behavioral Power of Nations.” Lew has a PhD in Astrophysics, an MS in nuclear physics and an undergraduate degree in geophysical engineering. In later years he received an MA in Military Studies. He retired as a senior scientist after 28 years in research and teaching astrophysics. He was a principal investigator on two NASA satellite missions. In a second career in the business world, he was senior director of corporate technology intelligence & alliances and later worked as a consultant to several domestic and foreign corporations in corporate intelligence. Currently he is president of the Rocky Mountain Churchillians, an affiliate of The Churchill Centre, London. He is a member Society for Military History, the U.S. Naval Institute and the U.S. Naval War College Foundation. He regularly attends the U.S. Naval War College Strategy Forums. Lew served on the Academy’s Board of Directors and has taught courses on Winston Churchill and The Big Bang.
Ginny Hoyle’s poems have appeared in a handful of journals, including Copper Nickel, MARGIE, Pilgrimage and Wazee. Through collaboration with noted book artist Judy Anderson, her work has been featured in exhibits in New York, San Francisco and Denver. Next up is an installation at Walker Fine Art, Denver, 300 W. 11th Avenue, Denver, opening March 25. (The working title is When We Were Birds.) From 2000 – 2003, she kept a personal journal with entries written in haiku—and fell in love with the form, which teaches practitioners to see the world more sharply, with heightened appreciation.
Phil Keenan is a founding partner of the law firm of Ambler & Keenan. He is a board certified attorney in estate planning, and is also a CPA and a CFP. His practice specializes in estate planning, probate and trust administration, and the taxation of trusts and estates. He has the highest peer reviewed rating from Martindale-Hubbell, and has been selected a Colorado SuperLawyer. He is a past-president of the Colorado Planned Giving Roundtable, and was recognized in 2009 with the Denver Foundation’s Philanthropic Leadership Award. Phil is also a member of the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys.
Joe Klocek has been a professional in the photographic industry for tens years. In that time he has worked as a wedding and portrait photographer, course instructor, and camera store manager. He has been a guest speaker at photo clubs, the Amazing Aging Exposition, and the Colorado Travel and Leisure Exposition.
Leah Klocek is a historical and genealogical researcher here in Denver. She has an undergraduate degree from Brandeis University, and a Masters from the University of Pennsylvania. The founder and owner of a small business, Crossroads Historical Research, Leah is also a certified history teacher.
Sally Kneser 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. While volunteering with the Junior League, Sally chaired several committees, including the Facilitators and 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.
Barry Mahoney has worked on criminal justice issues for over 50 years as a litigating attorney, researcher, teacher, and consultant. He is the author of numerous publications on justice system operations and issues, has taught widely in the U.S. and abroad, and has received awards for distinguished service from leading national organizations. Barry is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Harvard Law School, and holds a PhD in Political Science from Columbia University.
Sara Marsden retired in May 2012 from Adams County Social Services after 20 years as a caseworker. She has developed an interest in foreign policy over a lifetime of travel and living abroad in the Phillipines and Mexico. She served two years in the Peace Corps. and lived on and off in Mexico for five years in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s. Her oldest daughter was born in Mexico City. Both daughters are citizens of Mexico and and the US. She is a Denver native who attended CU Boulder and has Masters degrees from CSU and UCLA. She enjoys the interaction and stimulation that comes through courses at The Academy
Robin McNeil 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 more than 300 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, Robin 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. Robin 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. Robin now lives with his wife in Littleton where he teaches privately and continues to do research on the French composer Théodore Gouvy. He 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 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.
Dr. Jim Mingle has been a long-time facilitator for the Academy in both literature and history offerings. His working career was spent as director of a national association for university presidents and state officials concerned with higher education policy. During his retirement he has been a trip leader for the Sierra Club, led walking trips in Great Britain, and explored the wilds of Canada in his canoe. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.
Kerry O’Gorman has assisted Sally Kneser for many years in all of her Bridge courses, and has substitute taught for her on quite a few occasions. As her assistant, Kerry has become very familiar with all of her example hands and the specific lessons inherent in each of them. He has a lifetime of experience in education, primarily corporate training, and is an experienced presenter/teacher. Kerry has played bridge since he was quite young and continues to play regularly at the Denver bridge clubs.
Since retirement has unfolded, Sheila Porter’s interest in people and places have taken her to far flung locations and led her to doing psychological evaluations of asylum seekers seeking refuge in the U.S. Both activities have made her look at cultural differences, belief systems, the courage it takes to start a new life in a new place and the pros and cons of assimilation. As a psychologist and the granddaughter of immigrants, the multiple layers of what ‘diversity’ involves continue to engage her interest and provide her with a few answers and many more questions.
Howard Roitman retired in 2011 after 23 years at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, where he held such positions as Director of Environmental Programs and Director of both the Hazardous Materials and Waste Management and Health Facilities Division. In those capacities he was intimately involved in such issues as Rocky Flats, the ozone air quality standard, and impacts of oil and gas development. He was a recognized national spokesman for state environmental agencies. He has also taught for many years in DU’s University College environmental policy and management program. Howard received his B. A. from Brooklyn College and his J. D. from Yale Law School.
Retired school psychologist, Dr. Bob Rose’s, passions include education, peace studies, international development, conflict resolution, and reconciliation. He and his wife have worked with refugees for over 14 years and have volunteered with a number of NGO’s in the Middle East, Central America, Southeast Asia, and Africa. As a school psychologist at the secondary level, his work included conflict management, anger management, and training/supervising peer mediators. He taught graduate courses for educators for over 20 years. He recently earned a certificate in peace, social justice and reconciliation from Regis University.
Sharon Rouse is a retired art teacher who then enjoyed being a supervisor for art student teachers at Metropolitan State College. She 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.
Lorenz Rychner took up piano and clarinet lessons as a child in his native Switzerland. He combined a career in publishing with a busy performing schedule. After emigrating to Australia he spent 15 years as a full-time musician. In 1985, while in Los Angeles studying orchestration and conducting, he accepted an invitation to head up the music synthesis and electronic orchestration programs at the Grove School of Music. Many published books and articles later, he moved to Colorado in 1996 and was the Editor at Recording magazine (recordingmag.com).
Judy Schwartz is a career teacher and counselor. She taught at Temple Sinai for many years. She taught English and coached the speech and debate team at Denver’s East High School, taught teachers in the Philippines as a Peace Corps Volunteer from 1997 to 2000, taught and was the counselor at Emerson Street School, the former alternative school for expelled students, taught English in Guadalajara, Mexico, taught English acquisition classes in many Denver locations. Do you get the picture? Retired now from almost all of these positions, her time now is devoted to her children and four grandchildren and to hobbies and friends, all of which she loves dearly.
Chuck Shannon’s “two careers” began with twelve years as a division director for the Denver Regional Council of Governments and concluded with 20-plus years in the United Way system. In his last ten years with United Way, he split his time between serving as a Mile High United Way vice-president and as a senior fellow with the United Way of America (United Way Worldwide). In the latter role, he focused on national initiatives for development of low-income communities, serving part-time as a fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and collaborating with the Asset-Based Community Development Institute at Northwestern University.
Chuck’s post-retirement volunteerism embodies the same positive, community-building approach that he initiated at United Way. As an Arapahoe Library District volunteer, he has engaged immigrants from 62 countries in English conversational circles for the past four years. In addition, he has volunteered with Denver Kids, Inc., which partners with the Denver Public Schools to match students with mentors. Though his Denver Kids commitment was a formal one for the first three years, Chuck is now informally mentoring one student from the program.
Eileen Sharkey’s practical and global view of finance and easy-to-understand approach to the changing principles of money management makes her in demand as a financial educator. In 2010, Eileen was honored as one of the nation’s 50 most influential women in finance by WealthManagerWeb.com. Eileen is a Certified Financial Planner™ and has been a partner and principal of the financial planning and investment management firm, Sharkey, Howes & Javer, for 25 years.
Ted Stainman graduated from the Hebrew Union College, NYC (1970) with a master’s in Hebrew Letters. He also has a BA in history from Rutgers University (1964) and attended the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel 1964-65 as a special overseas student. He taught American Religion, a survey course, at Wesley College, Dover, DE, after retirement from the Air Force 1993.
Ralph Stern has spent the past 44 years reading about religious philosophy, 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 to intensify his study and transferred to the Jewish Theological Seminary, which is conservative. There he 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. He and his wife Frances, a past president of AJA, have lived in Denver for 22 years.
Before retiring after 30 years of teaching experience, Sandy Stolar taught Spanish at the middle school and high school and several semesters of community college, too. She loves getting people interested in speaking another language and learning about foreign cultures. As a staff developer, Sandy has experience teaching adults. Sandy has traveled extensively in Mexico, Spain, Costa Rica and South America. She looks forward to facilitating the Intermediate 2 Spanish class at the Academy.
Suzanne Walters was the director of marketing and development for the Denver Public Library during the successful bond election and capital campaign to build the new central library building as well as to remodel and build branches throughout the city of Denver. She has conducted workshops and seminars for libraries both nationally and internationally. Her latest publication, “Breakthrough Branding; Positioning Your Library to Survive and Thrive” was published by the American Library Association in 2013. Currently, Suzanne serves on the graduate faculty of Regis University, facilitating courses in social marketing. Her MBA comes from the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver.
Dr. Paulette Wasserstein 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 University of Phoenix departments of Communication and Masters of Education, Paulette 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 K-12 teacher training to raise literacy levels for students.
One of the Academy’s most accredited facilitators, Rear Admiral Richard (Dick) E. Young, 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 more than 50 years, and his four grown daughters.