TUES  11:30 am-1 pm,  2/14-3/14 (March 14 at DAM)
$70   Lecture, Discussion, Museum visit

NEW! Focus on this modernist art movement of the mid 19th century in Paris. Explore the biographies of key Impressionists and post-Impressionists. Through classroom lecture and a one-time trip to the DAM on March 14, experience how to ‘view’ Impressionists’ work and their palette; what makes their style so ‘revolutionary’ and how they differ among themselves. Topics covered include subject matter and composition of Impressionism. Participants will be encouraged to formulate their own preferences among the individuals and their works by developing a discerning eye. This class is a survey rather than an in-depth study. Includes DAM admission.

Paul Turelli has most recently taught Academy classes: “The Beatles: All You Need is Love” and “Female Songwriters of a Generation, Joni Mitchell to Bonnie Raitt.” Paul is a member of the Academy’s Board.

WED 11:30 am-3 pm, 2/15-3/22
$60   Movie viewing, Lecture, Discussion

NEW! The films Alfred Hitchcock made in the 1930s represent the second phase of his 50-years as a filmmaker, and are best known as the British Thriller Series. When he is given artistic control over his film projects during this decade, he produces some of his best and most enduring work. Blackmail, 1929, bridges the silent era to the sound era of motion picture history. View this film, along with four others, to witness Hitchcock’s styles and themes he will return to throughout his career.

Matt Wigdahl has led summer sessions at CU teaching the Films of Alfred Hitchcock and given over 50 lectures in library film series throughout Douglas and Jefferson Counties.

COURSE LEADERS: Joanne Mendes, Marty Corren
WED  1:30-3:30 pm,  3/1-3/22
$70   Docent-led tours at the DAM
*PREREQUISITES: Must be a DAM member and pay for own downtown parking.

NEW TOPIC! The original and iconic DAM Building, the North Building, opened in 1971 and is now in the early stages of a redesign for the building’s 50th birthday in 2021. Sessions will include the history, design and birth of the North and Hamilton Buildings.  Tours of exhibitions of art will include architectural features of the Hamilton and the important role design has played in fine and decorative arts across cultures in the permanent collections. All participants must be or become members of the Denver Art Museum. Call (720) 913-0130 to join.

Art Lovers Extraordinaire: Art enthusiast Joanne Mendes retired from organizing art history programs 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 her work as a DAM docent.


COURSE LEADER: Linda Bjelland, Various speakers
TUES  9:30-11 am, 2/28-4/4
$70   Various speakers, Lecture, Video, Q&A

A ‘pastiche’ is a mash-up of pieces from other works, and this course sets out to provide some tantalizing bits from the world of Opera. These include:
-Jernigan’s Opera Journeys and Other War Stories.Opera blogger Charles Jernigan (Jernigan’s Opera Journal) will share his adventures traveling the world in search of rarities in bel canto opera.
-The Tristan Chord.Jim Kneser explains the mystery and history of the chord that changed musical history.
-Rigoletto in Vegas??  Wha…..?? Linda Bjelland discusses why opera directors choose to set operas in places and times different than originally intended.
-Russian Opera:Dr. Mary Conroy presents a history of Russian opera, Eugene Onegin and Pikavaia Dama.
-The Making of an Opera Singer:Matthew Plenk of DU’s Lamont School of Music gives an overview of the academic and performance requirements for young opera singers.
Lucia di Lammermoor and The Bride of Lammermoor: Greg Carpenter, General Director of Opera Colorado, describes the history of Donizetti’s opera, as background for Opera Colorado’s production of Lucia.
On March 28, 11:30 am-1 pm, The Academy will present a performance of L’Elisir d’Amore by the Opera Colorado Young Artists in the Sanctuary

Linda Bjelland retired from a career in software development, and is now enjoying a second career traveling around the world to see opera.

TUES  9:30-11 am, 2/14-4/4
$85   Lecture, Discussion

Bob Dylan is arguably the most important American song writer and performer of the past half-century: poet laureate, folk hobo king, ‘60s protest poet, rock -and -roll icon, traveling troubadour, country blues outcast,  and an ever-relevant commentator on the American experience.  Examine the many facets of his career through his music, lyrics, video clips and interviews. Each participant will have an opportunity to share insights about a specific album or era. This is a repeat of a course taught in Fall 2014.

See Paul Turelli’s bio above.

THURS  9:30-11 am, 2/16-4/6
$75   Lecture, Q&A

NEW! Study a small selection of landmark compositions from the 18th and 19th Centuries, with the goal of understanding each work concerning form, harmony, style, and the composer’s adherence to the rules of his/her milieu. Questions to be explored include: Is the difficulty of the piece extreme? What did the composer do that attracted attention? What was the reaction of the composer’s contemporaries? What changes in the “rules of the day” did the composer make?

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.

COURSE LEADER: Lorenz Rychner
WED  1:30-3 pm, 2/15-3/15
$55   Viewing clips, Music, Lecture Q&A

This is a revamped new edition of the course first offered in the Spring of 2014. Much material has been added as the course follows the rise of the Big Bands against the background of The Great Depression; it also covers the outstanding small groups of the Swing era and tracks the careers of the major Blues artists of the period.

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’s an Academy Board member

TUES  11:30 am-1 pm, 2/21-3/21
$50   Lecture, Music, Discussion

We’ll examine six opera stars: Enrico Caruso, Feodor Chaliapin, Lawrence Tibbett, Rosa Ponselle, Jussi Bjorling, and Maria Callas, whose singing styles and distinctive personalities developed and transformed the art of opera. Through music and video, find out how these virtuosos raised the standards of vocal performance, acting, and dramatic presentation. These performers influenced and radically changed both how opera was presented and what the public expected. Repeat course from recent years-don’t miss out!

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.

THURS  1:30-3 pm, 3/16-4/27
$55   Lecture, Discussion, Listening to Music

Hear a lot of great singing and enjoy an introduction to a wider range of 20th Century performers, some of whom added realism to the opera stage, faced the challenges of racial or religious discrimination, and used personal charm, determination, and strength of will to overcome all barriers to success.

See Don’s bio above.

TUES  1:30-3 pm, 2/14-4/18 (SKIP 3/28)
$80   Music, Lecture, Q&A

Mahler has been called “a prophet for an age riddled with doubts and anxieties,” and understanding the composer’s tragedy-filled life is key to appreciating his music. Using new sources available from the past decade, we will unravel Mahler’s personality as we trace its expression in music that brought the Romantic period to a close: works that mark a dramatic change in artistic expression as he sought to reconcile his optimistic worldview with his personal tragedies and impending mortality.

A retired economist with a passion for western high art music in the Germanic tradition, Jim Kneser has led courses on the life and works of Mozart, Beethoven, Wagner, Schubert and Mahler.


WED  9:30-11 am, 2/15-3/22
$65   Lecture, Discussion, Q&A

In assessing the Presidents’ powers, can we compare Obama’s drone strikes on Al-Quaida strongholds to Jefferson’s attacks on North African pirate states 200-plus years ago? And what will incoming President Trump do? Join us as we consider how different White House occupants have exercised their military, political and economic powers, from waging undeclared wars and making high-level appointments to pardoning criminals and manning the “bully pulpit.” Come and put in your two cents’ worth.

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.

COURSE LEADER: Mary Schaeffer Conroy
WED  9:30-11 am, 3/1-3/29
$55   Lecture, Q&A

NEW What is Russia thinking? How do Putin’s recent policies fit in with past Russian strategies and what are his goals for the future? We will focus on Putin’s policies toward Ukraine, Crimea, Europe, the Middle East and Central Asia (the Stans).

World expert on late imperial Russia, Dr. Mary Schaeffer Conroy has given numerous lectures in the USSR. She has published several books and is an emeritus Professor at the University of Colorado, Denver.

COURSE LEADER: Beverly Chico
THURS  1:30-3 pm, 3/23-4/27 (SKIP 4/13)
$50   Lecture, Discussion, Trying on historical hats!

NEW! Over generations, headwear has been worn to symbolize ethnic piety, spiritual elevation, cultural traditionalism, political power, folk traditions and more. Learn how traditions related to covering the head began and flourished within religions. Among many items to be discussed will be the burqa, yarmulke, turban, miter and many more. See and experience some of these headpieces.

Dr. Beverly Chico is a collector, exhibitor and author of Hats and Headwear Around The World: A Cultural Encyclopedia. As a professor of History and Humanities at colleges in Baltimore and Denver, she has served on the Costume Society of America’s Board of Directors and Trustees for Endowment and was Consultant to Canada’s Museum of Civilization in Ottawa.

COURSE LEADER: Shellie Hochstadt
WED  11:30 am-1 pm, 2/15-3/22
$70   Lecture, Q&A

NEW! An examination of the Vietnam War, the course begins with the history of French Colonialism and continues through the American involvement in Vietnam. The course leader will talk about the country’s history from 1800-1975.

Shellie Hochstadt taught AP world history, government and economics until retiring from high school teaching in 2010. She combines her interests in history, travel and reading into her teaching, where her goal is to bring a thoughtful global perspective.

COURSE LEADER: Susan Blake Smith, various
THURS  11:30 am-1 pm, 3/2-4/20 (SKIP 3/23 & 4/13)
$75   Various speakers, Lecture, Music, Q&A

NEW! Hamilton, the record-breaking Broadway sensation, has sparked new interest in one of America’s most fascinating founding fathers. Using the musical as our backdrop, explore Alexander Hamilton’s remarkable story from a hard-scrabble childhood in St. Croix to his meteoric rise to Secretary of the Treasury, his role in the country’s first publicized sex scandal and his fateful duel with Aaron Burr. We will discuss the lyrics, the music and why the show has “revol-utionized” Broadway. Is the show historically accurate? Did Hamilton throw away his shot? Why is Lin-Manuel Miranda, the playwright, considered a literary and musical genius? This class will be fast-paced and fun.  Whether you are already familiar with the music or not, you’re going to “want to be in the room where it happens.”

Susan Blake-Smith, with Jack Keenan, chair of the history department at The Academy, Jim Kneser, music and economics buff, Paulette Wasserstein, literature rock star and MitchSamu, professional music director, composer, musician and pianist extraordinaire.

COURSE LEADER: Lorraine Sherry, Various speakers from Rocky Mountain Map Society (RMMS)
THURS 1:30-3 pm, 2/23-3/23
$60   Lectures, Map exhibits

NEW! In the case of antique maps, they don’t tell us where to go but tell us where we’ve been. Guest speakers from the Rocky Mountain Map Society will demonstrate these blendings of art, history and belief (“There be dragons here!)” that have shaped our growth as a people and as a nation. But where did their maps come from? We’ll answer that and other questions (including how some of the nations in the Eurozone got their shapes) by exploring the history of cartography from Ptolemy to Mercator to the present day. Along the way, we’ll come across some very intriguing myths and mistakes. Lecturers will exhibit some antique maps from their own collections.

Dr. Lorraine Sherry is Secretary/ Webmaster and Director of the Rocky Mountain Map Society (www.RMmaps.org). Various speakers are members of the Rocky Mountain Map Society, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the study and appreciation of maps and items of cartographic interest.


TUES  9:30-11 am, 2/14-4/25 (performance 4/25)
$90   Reading, Performing

Among a group of your Academy peers, analyze, prepare and rehearse one or two classic scripts for an end-of-class performance with Academy students, family and friends. Class members may act, serve as simple sound technicians or be involved in other ways (understudies, stage set-up, gathering and managing simple costumes and props, etc.); however, the whole group will contribute to script analysis and character development by helping create the production. Prior acting experience and line memorization are not required.

Karyl Meyer is a former high school theatre teacher, as well as a coach for speech and debate teams. She has also been a board member of the Colorado Thespian Society.

WED  11:30 am-1 pm, 2/22-3/29
$55   Interactive Writing Workshop

Whether you’re 19 or 90, 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 in your life in a supportive atmosphere. Limited to 12 participants. Repeat of popular Academy course.

Kathy Boyer, a retired teacher, has conducted Life Stories workshops for libraries, summer camps, churches, community centers, and the Academy. She also works one-on-one to help people record their memories electronically.

COURSE LEADER:  Paulette Wasserstein
TUES  1:30-3 pm, 3/7-4/18 (SKIP 4/11)
$65   Reading, Discussion

Join the celebration of the best short story writers of the 20th century. As an extension of the popular ‘Contemporary Short Stories’ class, we will pay tribute to classical writers such as Edna Ferber, Ring Lardner, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, William Faulkner and so many more. Examine one or two memorable stories each week, teasing out the meanings and building an appreciation of the short story as an art form. Broaden your knowledge and sharpen your interpretive skills with lively discussions and interactive challenges. This is a repeat course from Fall 2016.

Lorrie Moore, Heidi Pitlor, Eds. 100 Years of The Best American Short Stories. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015

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

TUES  9:30-11, 3/14-4/25 (SKIP 4/11)
$55   Discussion, Writing

“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 from Spring 2016.

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?

COURSE LEADERS: Ginny Hoyle, Art Elser
TUES  1:30-3 pm, 2/14-3/21
$65  Discussion, Writing

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.

COURSE LEADERS: Jim & Pam Mingle
WED  1:30-3 pm, 3/22-4/26 (SKIP 4/12)
$60   Movie viewing, Discussion, Q&A

NEW! Watch and compare classic novels and their film adaptations from some of the great authors across the pond. Drawn from a list of the best 100 British novels compiled by the BBC, the novels will include the works of Jane Austen, Thomas Hardy, Muriel Spark, Jean Rhys and Ian McEwan. We will discuss how the best novels often have common themes of a timeless nature. In watching film adaptations, examine the effectiveness of the director’s and screen writer’s interpretations.

REQUIRED READING: Choose one or two: Emma by Jane Austen, The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy, Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark, Atonement by Ian McEwan

Dr. Jim Mingle was a director of a national association for university presidents and state officials concerned with higher education policy.  Pam Mingle is a former teacher and reference librarian. She is the author of three historical novels, including The Pursuit of Mary Bennet, a Pride and Prejudice sequel.


COURSE LEADER:  Alec Tsoucatos
THURS  9:30-11 am,  2/16-4/6
$65   Lecture, Q&A

NEW! Get a completely different, alternative approach to economics from what you’re accustomed to. Our course leader posits “In a finite system, no subsystem can grow indefinitely. The system is the Earth, which is NOT growing; but one of the subsystems is the economy. We cannot grow the economy indefinitely, because we will run out of resources and garbage absorbers. The economy will then become unsustainable.” Is a sustainable, steady-state Economy attainable? Is it desirable? We will propose and assess actual and possible solutions to exhaustion of physical resources and pollution and ways of putting such solutions into practice in our own communities.

Dr. Alec Tsoucatos received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Economics from UC Berkeley and his PhD from CU Boulder under the tutelage of Kenneth Boulding. His interests include New Economics, Integrative Medicine and Positive Psychology.

COURSE LEADER: Eileen Sharkey
TUES  1:30-3 pm, 3/14-4/4
$55   Lecture, Q&A

Global and personal economic storms are hard to avoid, but you can improve your chances of survival. Students will use current, practical tools to audit their own financial situations and to help them improve results. We will also delve into advanced money- management techniques including the psychology of money, cash flow, inflation and investing. This is a repeat course, but we will incorporate new topics requested by students in the Spring 2016 offering. This course is not intended to address individuals’ issues, but to provide relevant and timely information.

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.

THURS  9:30-11 am, 3/23-4/27 (SKIP 4/13)
$60   Lecture, Discussion

Was the last version of your will written on a yellow legal pad with coffee rings and the faint smell of cigarette smoke? Kidding aside, legal hardships are usually caused by the lack of a will or power of attorney. Students will 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”). Repeat from Spring 2016.

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.


COURSE LEADER: Sara Marsden, Various speakers
TUES  9:30-11 am, 2/14-4/4
$105   (includes 2017 Great Decisions Briefings Book)
Various speakers, lecture, discussion, video

NEW TOPICS! The Great Decisions discussion groups are part of a nationwide annual  program developed by the Foreign Policy Association. The 2017 topics are: The Future of Europe, Trade and Politics, Conflict in the South China Sea, Saudi Arabia in Transition, U.S. Foreign Policy and Petroleum, Latin America’s Political Pendulum, Prospects for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Nuclear Security. Each 15-page chapter in the Great Decisions Briefing Book places the issues in historical context and provides background, current policies and alternative options. Videos featuring experts in the field provide more information.

Required Reading:  2017 Great Decisions Briefing Book, which will be distributed on Jan. 18 at the One-Day University.

Sara Marsden studied at the University of Colorado and received Masters degrees from CSU and UCLA.  She also completed a two-year stint in the Peace Corps in the Phillipines.

COURSE LEADER: Dr. Philip Tedeschi, PhD and DU Faculty
WED  9:30-11 am, 3/8-4/5
$60   Lecture, Q&A

NEW! What is the importance of human relationships with other animals and the living world? How do our connections with nature and the living world shape our character and create experiences which inform our mental, physical and spiritual well-being? Faculty from the DU Graduate School of Social Work will share knowledge about: the human-animal bond in research and practice; the new work of dogs–relationships at both ends of the leash; the history of the human-equine bond, equine-assisted mental health; conservation social work, humane education across the lifespan; and the Colorado LINK Project, which works to preserve this bond to keep both humans and animals safe.

The Institute for Human-Animal Connection (IHAC) is dedicated to supporting healthy communities for people and animals. IHAC provides educational, research and advocacy opportunities to students on campus, as well as professional development for individuals around the globe.  www.du.edu/ihac

COURSE LEADER: Dennis Wanebo
THURS  9:30-11 am, 2/16-3/23 (SKIP 4/13)
$60   Lecture, discussion

NEW!  Get a front seat to the trial system by turning one particular case inside out: the 1981 interstate-contract murder of a young mother in Boulder County. The instructor, who originally tried the case, will set the scene, introduce the characters, discuss constitutional issues, explore the pros and cons of “going for the death penalty,” discuss plea bargains and examine the jury system. Class limit is 25.

Dennis Wanebo is a retired lawyer who has tried hundreds of civil and criminal cases from both sides of the courtroom. He’s also an award-winning singer/songwriter.

COURSE LEADER: Dr. Barry Mahoney
THURS  11:30-1 pm, 3/16-4/27
$65   Lecture, Discussion

In the past three years, long-simmering resentments about police practices and, more broadly, about harsh sentencing practices have dominated the news. 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 the recipient of awards for distinguished service from leading national organizations.

COURSE LEADER: Rosalie Goldman, various speakers
WED  1:30-3 pm, 3/15-4/26 (SKIP 4/12)
$75   Various speakers, Lecture, Q &A

NEW!  This is an opportunity to expose yourself to viewpoints on challenging contemporary issues from representatives of local advocacy organizations. All classes will include presentation, Q&A and discussion.

These compelling issues include:
-A Voice for Medical Marijuana, Teri Robnett, Executive Director, Cannabis Patients Alliance
-The USA Patriot Act–Its Effect on Privacy, Speakers Bureau Representative, American Civil Liberties Union
-America’s Gun Violence Epidemic–Colorado Response, Tom Mauser and Eileen McCarron, Colorado Ceasefire
-Criminal Justice Reform–An Alternative Conversation on Public Safety, Juston Cooper, Deputy Director, Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition
-New American Slavery in Colorado–Sex and Labor Trafficking, Mary Durant,  Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking
-The Face of Hate in the 21st Century– Jeremy Shaver, Anti Defamation League Associate Regional Director

Rosalie Goldman is a retired special education teacher who has a keen interest in current events. Goldman is eager to present the views of multiple advocacy organizations in our community, each with its own mission.

COURSE LEADERS: Sharon Vary, Steve Bernard, Rosalie Goldman, Sheila Porter
THURS  1:30-3 pm, 2/16-3/16
$60   Lecture, Q&A

NEW! What do a judge, a defense attorney and a prosecutor look for in their jury selection? Who gets chosen and why? What is the impact of serving on a jury, of being sequestered or having a life or death decision rest in your hands? And, even more importantly, what is the history of this enigmatic system and what impacts on peoples’ approach to the whole concept of ‘punishment’? Join three judges, two attorneys and a panel of jurors for an in-depth look at this intriguing part of our justice system. Participants will hear about the history of the system from attorneys, judges and those who have served on a jury, capped off by a discussion of ‘punishment’ itself and our need to seek retribution.

REQUIRED READING: Morris B. Hoffman. The Punisher’s Brain. Cambridge University Press, 2014 Dr. Sharon Vary, Steve Bernard, Rosalie

Goldman and Dr. Sheila Porter have combined their experiences as a Clinical Social worker (Sharon), a forensic psychologist (Sheila), teacher and current events addict (Rosalie) and a former prosecutor and current appellate judge (Steve).


WED  9:30-11 am, 3/15-4/26 (SKIP 4/12)
$70   Brief lecture, Discussion

NEW! Consider famous philosophers’, artists’ and critics’ views about the nature and importance of Beauty for individuals, societies, and civilizations. Survey the writings and art from Plato, Aristotle, John Dewey, Peter Schjeldahl, David Shapiro, John Berger, Louise Bourgeoise, Agnes Martin, Picasso, as well as art from primitive times, ancient Greece, Renaissance Europe, the Romantic era, the 20th century, and today to see how they exemplify different philosophical views about the nature and importance of Beauty. Each class includes a short introduction, and then becomes a discussion class in which every class member’s views will enrich everyone’s understanding.

REQUIRED READING:  Eco Umberto. History of Beauty, ed. Rizzoli Press, 2002 and John Berger. Ways of Seeing. Penguin, 1990.

Rex Brown has been facilitating philosophy discussions at the Academy for three years. He’s taught at every level of schooling and founded an inner-city charter school specializing in experiential, project-based learning. He’s on a Board at DAM and runs Pattern Studio shop in RiNo.

COURSE LEADER:  Ted Stainman
THURS  1:30-3 pm, 2/23-3/30
$65   Lecture, Discussion, Q&A

NEW! Jump into the history of Israel, picking up from the Babylonian exile, through the Persian, Greek and Roman occupations and come to the time of Jesus. Using the biblical text as the prime source of research and some surviving Greek and Latin literature, the class will take a historical look at Israel. Writings from the Macabees, the later prophets and the Jewish writer Josephus will bring us to the time of Jesus and the destruction of the Temple in 67 A.D.  This class is a continuation of previous Israeli history, but anyone is welcome to join in. Class maximum of 25 participants

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 retiring from 23 years as an Air Force chaplain.

TUES  11:30 am-1 pm,  2/21-4/25 (SKIP 4/11)
$90   Lecture, Q&A

NEW! While based on previous Islam courses taught by Walt, he has designed this course to assist non-Muslims to better relate to those Muslims that they meet. A three-week intro into the origin and history of Islam will be followed by a look at how Islam relates to Jesus; Jews/Christians; charity, finance and violence. Finally, examine what is an Islamic State.

Walt Meyer, a “retired technocrat,” enjoys sharing his research into the historical, political, and religious roots of relations between Muslim cultures and the West.

COURSE LEADER: Bob Neuwoehner
TUES  1:30-3 pm, 2/14-4/25 (SKIP 4/11)
$80   Lecture, Discussion

NEW! The Gospel of John has been called the spiritual gospel, the maverick gospel, the mystical gospel, and more. You’ll learn the history behind this uniquely poetic gospel, get an overview of its narrative, and engage with some of the living symbols found throughout the text.

Dr. Robert (Bob) Neuwoehner holds a PhD in biblical interpretation from the University of Denver & Iliff School of Theology’s Joint PhD Program. He has taught at DU and a number of churches in the Denver area.


Jim Bergstrom, Jim Eraker, Lew House
TUES  11:30 am-1 pm, 2/21-3/21
$70   Various speakers, Lecture, Q&A

NEW! The Sun, the source of all life on Earth, is but an ordinary star amongst the billions of stars in the Milky Way.  Thus, we begin with a brief overview of the origin of the Universe, the Milky Way and our Sun. Next comes the study of Mars, and in comparison to our planet, it was once much wetter than originally thought. There is also recent news surrounding life on Mars and missions to the red planet. Enjoy presentations about some of our lesser-known planets, Mercury, the closest planet to the sun, and Jupiter, the largest planet.

Dr. Lew House an astrophysicist, studied the atmospheres of the sun and stars and was a Principal Investigator on two NASA satellite missions. Jim Bergstrom, PHD, is a consultant to Ball Aerospace and Chief Systems Engineer for the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera, currently in Mars orbit. Jim Eraker also worked for Ball, where he provided technical leadership to design, build, and test the ultra-cold electronics for the Webb telescope.

THURS  1:30-3 pm, 3/16-4/27 (SKIP 4/13)
$75  Lecture, Q&A

Get the facts behind healthcare for people your age and the why’s behind all of the screenings, pokes and prods. CPMG physicians will lead the way in educating you about: screening and prevention, over-diagnosis and incidents; medical studies in the media; cardiovascular risk reduction and cholesterol; caring for others: parents and grandchildren; avoiding falls:  keeping mobile and arthritis; lifestyle vs medication; the aging brain and prevention of dementia; Medicare and policy; alcohol and addiction; and shared decision making: advocacy, end of life issues. This course is a joint venture between The Academy and Colorado Permanente Medical Group. Repeat class from Fall 2016.

Colorado Permanente Medical Group partners with Kaiser Foundation Health Plan to serve the more than 640,000 members of Kaiser Permanente Colorado.  Their mission is the same—to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of its members and the communities they serve.

THURS  11:30 am-1 pm, 2/15-3/22
$70   Discussion, Lecture, Q&A

NEW! The human immune system is a highly evolved, complex system that continuously protects us from our hostile environment.  When in balance, it does an incredible job keeping us alive and healthy; but when the system gets out of balance – either too little or too much activity, a wide variety of acute and chronic diseases develop. Cancer, allergies, lupus and strep all have a place in this delicate system.

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. He’s also one of the chairs of The Academy’s curriculum committee.

THURS  9:30-11 am,  3/2-4/27 (SKIP 4/13
$75   Lecture, Q&A, Optional bike ride

NEW! Course format is lecture, discussion, reports.
Get the background you need to learn about environmental science so that you can objectively assess newspaper and magazine articles. With a focus on issues important to the Rocky Mountains, topics will include the basics of environmental policy, science principles (focus on chemistry), and environmental impacts. An optional bicycle ride along the South Platte River will identify environmental issues not observed by most Denverites. No math or chemistry required.

John Lanning has been a professor of chemistry at UCD, with an interest in atmospheric chemistry and indoor air quality.

SCIENCE SAMPLER: Cybersecurity to Black Holes
COURSE LEADER: Woody Emlen, Various Speakers
THURS  11:30 am-1 pm,  2/23-4/6 (SKIP 3/16)
$75   Lecture, Q&A

NEW! A Series of six lectures will cover a wide range of science topics that are in the news or relevant to everyone today. Speakers and topics include:

-The Concerns and Reflections of a Geologist,
Bob Raynolds, PhD
-Cybersecurity, Ross Duncan –
-Gravitational Waves: When Black Holes Collide;
Jonathan Ormes, PhD
-Mass Extinctions: Causes and Effects;
Larry Matten, PhD
-Chemical Warfare, Andrew Ternay, PhD -;
-NASA’s Earth Observations of the Global Environment: The View from Space, Michael King, PhD

See Woody’s bio above.


COURSE LEADER: Ann Westerberg
THURS  1:30-3 pm,  3/2-4/6
$60   Lecture, discussion

NEW! Somewhere in the corner of each mind is a curiosity—a question about something you see every day or just occasionally think about. Investigate and develop your interest in class, and then complete your writing piece after the class is over. While you supply the idea, the instructor will provide the methods of finding information, sharpening writing skills, structuring a paragraph and refining grammar.

Ann Westerberg’s articles have been published in the Denver Post and The Christian Science Monitor. She has wrote Castles of Colorado, which has sold out of three runs, and Colorado Ghost Tours, a travel book.

TUES  1:30-3 pm, 3/21
$30   Participant drawing, Demonstrations

This hands-on course will take you step-by-step through a process that will unlock your ability to draw anything accurately.  Students will discover a way of seeing that will surprise in its simplicity. As an artist who has taught thousands over the past 20 years, Chuck Ceraso states, “I have never met anyone who can’t learn to draw.”  If you can sign your name, you have the capacity to draw as well as Rembrandt! Supply list will be provided in advance.

Chuck Ceraso has been teaching at the DAM for the past 18 years, and at The Art Students League of Denver. He is the author of The Art of Color Seeing.

TUES  9:30 am-2:30 pm, 4/18
$40   Demo, Hands-On

Bring your brushes and supplies to participate in this “studio day” to paint, explore, or even finish a painting. Explore the 4 S’s to create textures plus a few surprises. Participants, both beginner and experienced, will be encouraged to take brave, bold new steps to broaden their watercolor repertoire. A suggested supply list will be sent to participants. Class limit is 18. If you have questions about whether this class is a good fit, please contact Sharon at (303) 773-6740 or SNRouse@aol.com.

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.

COURSE LEADER:  Susan Blake Smith
TUES  1:30-3 pm, 2/28-4/18 (SKIP 3/21 & 4/11)
$60   Conversation, Reading

Tailored to fit beginners with “un poquito” of previous Spanish language experience, this class will include the 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) 794-9635.

REQUIRED READING:  Dorothy Richmond, Practice Makes Perfect Spanish Verb Tenses.  McGraw-Hill, 2010. It’s $15.

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.

TUES  11:30 am-1 pm, 2/14-4/4  (SKIP 2/21, 3/28)
$60   Conversation, Reading

The Beginning/Intermediate class is for those who have taken some Spanish, but want to “brush up” on grammar and vocabulary and keep building conversational skills. Participants should be comfort-able with the present tense, familiar with the past tenses and ready to sharpen their communication skills through reading, speaking and listening. Class max is 14. Is this class a fit? Llámame at (303) 399-8241.

REQUIRED READING:  Reading any Spanish text from your favorite bookstore, watching television in Spanish or listening to the Spanish radio station

An educator for 36 years, Linda Gordon retired 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.

COURSE LEADER:  Sandy Stolar
WED  1:30-3 pm, 2/15-4/5
$70   Conversation, Reading

¡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 have a lot of fun doing it—esta es la clase para ti. Limited to 12 participants. Is this a fit? Llámame at (303) 708-9716.

REQUIRED READING:  Dorothy Richmond, Practice Makes Perfect Spanish Verb Tenses.  McGraw-Hill, 2010. It’s $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. She recently received a license to teach Tai Chi.

WED  9:30-11 am, 3/8-4/19
$10/class.   First class FREE

3/8: Free Class on Troubleshooting Your PC and Overview of Future Classes
3/15: Streaming video:  Netflix, Hulu, Xfinity
3/22: Internet for Video Lovers: YouTube, Fandango, and Movie Previews
4/5:  Using Google for Far More Than Searching
4/19:  Research and Purchasing Using Amazon

Onsite Consulting owner, Scott Henke, has been a consultant for 33 years. His company offers PC consulting, network troubleshooting, repair, virus and spyware solutions, free Carbonite backup monitoring, remote emergency help and more. He is available for free advice via email: scott@henke.com

TUES  11:30 am-1:30 pm, 2/14-3/21


THURS  9:30-11:30 am, 2/16-3/30 (SKIP 3/9)

This is a continuation of the fall 2016 course on Planning A Suit Contract and is a repeat of the spring 2012 course.  The exclusive concentration of this offering will be on declarer play of notrump contracts.  Lectures and examples will focus on planning play, finesses, promoting length and establishing a suit, learning when to hold up on taking winners, and how to “win the race” in a notrump contract. This class will not examine bidding and will only indirectly touch on defensive play. The first half of the class will include lectures with slides, Q&A, examining sample hands, and drilling, followed by an hour playing pre-set hands.  Participants in the fall course had priority registration, and the class is limited to 78. The course is organized consistent with Barbara Seagram and David Bird’s book: Planning the Play of a Bridge Hand.

REQUIRED READING:  Must have read, or have equivalent knowledge to Audrey Grant’s Play of the Hand in the 21st Century (Baron Barclay Bridge, 2008).

Sally Kneser 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.

As a teenager, Bill Shaw taught himself to play bridge from a Charles Goren book, played fraternity bridge in college (don’t ask) and then ignored the game for over 40 years and is now a bronze life master. When not playing bridge, he enjoys downhill skiing and tai chi.

TUES  1:30-3 pm, 2/14-3/21
$25   Play set hands


THURS  11:30 am-1:00 pm, 2/16-3/30 (SKIP 3/9)
$25   Play set hands

NEW!  Looking for a place to relax and play bridge? No instruction to interrupt your playing time with friends. Pre-set challenges in bidding and play will be available each week or you can shuffle and play random deals. Come with your own group or mix around with other bridge lovers. Participants from the Play of the Hand course can bring a lunch and continue the fun. Each course limited to 90 participants.


Our course leaders 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.

Jim Bergstrom, PHD, is a consultant to Ball Aerospace and Chief Systems Engineer for the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera, currently in Mars orbit.

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.

Linda Bjelland retired from a career in software development for the travel industry, and is now enjoying a second career traveling around the world to see opera.  She has seen 13 of Rossini’s operas.

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 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.

Susan’s alter-ego is a history buff who has facilitated three discussion classes using counterfactual essays by renowned historians to reimagine history’s critical turning points.   She will bring this enthusiasm and curiosity to the subject of Alexander Hamilton with the help of Jack Keenan, chair of the history department at The Academy; Jim Kneser, economics and music aficionado; Paulette Wasserstein, literature rock star; and Mitch Samu, music director, musical theater expert and pianist extraordinaire.

Kathy Boyer 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.  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.

Rex Brown has a BA in American Literature from Middlebury College, a Masters in American and British Literature from the University of Iowa, and a Ph.D in Modern Letters from the University of Iowa.  He is the author of Schools of Thought: how the politics of literacy shape thinking in the classroom; It’s Your Fault, an insider’s guide to learning and teaching in city schools; and scores of reports and articles about teaching reading, writing, art, and critical thinking. He has 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 everyday lives.

Chuck Ceraso has been teaching at the Denver Art Museum for the past 16 years, and is now teaching at The Art Students League of Denver and at his studio in Lafayette, Colorado. He recently completed the book, The Art of Color Seeing. Ceraso studied art at the University of Notre Dame, and the New Orleans Academy of Fine Art as well as with Henry Hensche at the Cape School of Art. His work is in private and public collections in both this country and abroad. Ceraso is listed in Who’s Who in the West and The Dictionary of International Biography.

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).

Sharisse Arnold-Rehring was born and raised in Chicago, and moved to Colorado in 1994 after training at Northwestern University. She spent two years as a Hospitalist working for Children’s Hospital of Boston, but since graduation has spent the bulk of her career at a primary care doc and Hospitalist with Kaiser Permanente.

Colorado Permanente Medical Group partners with Kaiser Foundation Health Plan to serve the more than 640,000 members of Kaiser Permanente Colorado.  Their mission is the same—to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of its members and the communities they serve.

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 attended the Art Center School in Los Angeles, then for a time he thought he might become a popular singer – until an unwillingness to face rejection combined with a lack of talent and the emergence of the Rock Generation to convince him otherwise. Don was the first general manager of The Magic Castle in Hollywood (no, he can’t do any magic tricks) and then spent 46 years with Executive Car Leasing Company before retiring. After the death of his wife in 2010, Don moved to Aurora, Colorado where he has pursued a life of indolence interrupted only by hours spent on the computer and reading his favorite authors, and by the bursts of activity needed to research, write, and present classes for the Academy. He tried never to take life or himself too seriously and injects that attitude into his classes.

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).

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!

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 scott@henke.com

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 lots of degrees – Geophysical Engineering, MS Nuclear Physics, MA Military Studies and a PhD in Astrophysics. His research career focused on the atmospheres of the sun and stars. At the Academy he has taught courses on Winston Churchill, the Big Bang, and the Rise of China’s Military.

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.

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.

Jim Kneser is in his fourteenth year of leading classes in economics, public policy, and high art music. He has led more than 60 economics and public policy classes with more than 3,500 class members and has facilitated more than fifteen classes in music, focusing on the Germanic tradition from Bach to Mahler and from sonatas to opera. 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 placing current economic and public policy issues in proper historical context, explaining the fundamental economic principles that apply, and allowing class members to draw their own conclusions on the proper course of action. Past participants have consistently praised his classes, emphasizing that he “thrives on questions and discussion” and commenting that he is “One of the finest teachers I have ever seen in a classroom—including the graduate level—brilliantly informed!” and that “In all my years of teaching economics at the college level, I have never seen anyone explain the subject as clearly as Jim does.”

John Lanning is professor emeritus of chemistry at the University of Colorado Denver.  He taught chemistry courses in general, analytical, and environmental chemistry to college freshmen through master’s students.  His chemistry research interests included atmospheric chemistry and indoor air quality.  As a college associate dean and assistant vice chancellor, John developed programs that promote student success for entering freshmen, transfer students, and undergraduate students.   John has a passion for active learning and student success, and he is the recipient of a national award for promoting student success for first-year college students.

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.

Walt Meyer 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. My wife and I have been married 52 years and have three grown children and four grandchildren. His interest in the religions of the Middle East stems from having led courses on Islam, on the Crusades and on the Inquisitions. He has led these classes a total of ten times over the past nine years and has received rave reviews of the depth and quality of his presentations. He has done considerable reading on the subject. The religions that will be discussed are frequently in the news and the danger facing some of them is real and in some cases threatening.

Karyl Meyer has been involved in educational and community theatre most of her life. After majoring in theatre and speech (and minoring in math) she spent many years teaching high school (even math on occasion) and directing plays and musicals as well as coaching speech and debate teams. For several years she was on the board of the Colorado Thespian Society and directed university auditions for high school seniors, bringing in 25 university representatives from around the country. She has also directed a variety of productions for community and church groups. Her favorite aspects of play production are the creative and collaborative efforts to bring a piece of literature fully to life for an audience.

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.

Pam Mingle is a former teacher and reference librarian. Her debut novel, Kissing Shakespeare, won the 2013 Colorado Book Award for young  adult fiction. Her latest book, The Pursuit of Mary Bennet, is a Pride and Prejudice sequel.

Robert (Bob) Neuwoehner holds a PhD in biblical interpretation from the University of Denver & Iliff School of Theology’s Joint PhD Program. In his dissertation, which was nominated for DU’s distinguished dissertation award, Bob used a Jungian method to explore the symbolism in the Gospel of John. Bob has taught at DU and a number of churches in the Denver area.

Philip Tedeschi and DU Faculty:  Dr. Tedeschi, Clinical Professor,  is an Animal-Assisted Social Work and Experiential Therapy Specialist and co-founder and Executive Directory of the internationally known Institute for Human-Animal Connection (IHAC) at the University of Denver Graduate School of Social Work (GSSW).  He also teaches MSW courses in forensic social work and experiential therapy approaches, with emphasis on conservation and environmental social work in areas such as East Africa and the inclusion of animals in therapeutic settings.

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.

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).

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.

As a teenager, Bill Shaw taught himself to play bridge from a Charles Goren book, played fraternity bridge in college (don’t ask) and then ignored the game for over 40 years.  When he retired from medical practice in 2008, he took up the game again, partnering with his wife, Marsha, who had played duplicate since high school and is the real bridge player of the family.  After adjusting to the many changes which had occurred since the 60s, he began playing regularly at local clubs.  He is currently a bronze life master.  When not playing bridge he enjoys downhill skiing (it helps speed up his bridge game and be a bit reckless) and practicing tai chi (it helps him slow down, relax and focus on his game).

Lorraine Sherry is a long-term member of the Rocky Mountain Map Society (www.RMmaps.org), a 501C3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the study and appreciation of maps and items of cartographic interest.   She currently serves as Secretary/Webmaster and Director of the Society.   Our members share a common interest in collecting antiquarian maps, learning about the history of discoveries, and understanding how the invention of maps has shaped our culture, politics, and destiny throughout the ages.  All of the speakers in this 5-week lecture/presentation course are members of the Rocky Mountain Map Society.  Lorraine became interested in antique maps when she received a 1665 Nicolas Sanson map of southern Lithuania and Belarus as a birthday present 15 ago.   Lorraine’s personal map collection focuses on Russia and Eastern Europe, with a concentration on Lithuania and the Baltic States in the 16th-19th centuries.

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.

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.

Alec Tsoucatos was born in Alexandria, Egypt of Greek parents a day before Pearl Harbor. He attended a primary British school in Alexandria and finished Junior High and High School in Athens Greece. He has lived in Egypt, Greece, England and America. He received his Bachelors and Master’s degrees in Economics from UC Berkeley and his PhD from CU Boulder under the tutelage of Kenneth Boulding. His main interests are in New Economics, Integrative Medicine, Positive Psychology and progressive mystical Christianity.

Paul Turelli is a retired middle school teacher and administrator from Littleton Public Schools. He’s taught successful courses at The Academy including The Beatles, Female Songwriters of the 60s and a previous version of Bob Dylan (before THE prize.) Paul studied literary and film criticism as a graduate student in college and also taught literature during his teaching career.

Sharon Vary graduated from Vassar as a self-proclaimed hippie war protester in 1970 and then got an MSW from Smith. She spent most of her adult life as a therapist doing a lot of grief and couples’ work–sometimes those are connected. Sharon loves to read almost anything, discuss almost anything and travel almost anywhere. Musician James Taylor and Sharon were born on the same day, same year so her motto is, “the secret of life is enjoying the passage of time,” which is why she’s always been an avid Academy member.

Dennis Wanebo is a lawyer who has tried hundreds of jury trials—civil and criminal—as a prosecutor and as a defense attorney.  He has tried complex civil cases, and, on the criminal side, everything from traffic to murder.

Dennis is a Denver native, Vietnam-era Navy veteran, graduate of Metropolitan State University, and the University of Colorado School of Law, where he was editor-in-chief of the law review.  He currently serves as a part-time municipal judge in Boulder and in Westminster.  He coaches a small high school’s mock trial team, and has taken that team to the state finals year after year.

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.

Ann Westerberg is a Denver native and currently lives in Littleton.  As a writer she’s been employed by and written travel items for The Denver Post, and has had personal and travel essays published in both The Post and The Christian Science Monitor.  Her books, Castles of Colorado and Colorado Ghost Tours were bought and published by Johnson Books, an arm of Big Earth Publishing out of New York, the former selling out of three runs.  Ann’s focus is on the unusual.  She edited and wrote for The Denver Jazz Club Newsletter for over ten years.

Matt Wigdahl began his teaching career with Kindergartners and the next 28 with high schoolers at Douglas County Schools,-teaching Literature, Grammar, Composition and Creative Writing. Matt developed a Humanities Course and a Literature of Film Class. His love of film prompted him to spend summer sessions at CU teaching the Films of Alfred Hitchcock and give over 50 lectures in library film series throughout Douglas and Jefferson Counties. Matt is a published poet who writes sonnets. He’s earned BA degrees in History and English from CSU, and a Masters of Humanities from CU in Film Study & Art History. Matt, Pam and their daughter, Liz, live in Castle Rock and Cannon Beach, Ore.

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.