Mara Liasson, National Political Correspondent for National Public Radio, reports on the White House and Congress. She also is a contributor to Fox News. She is well-known for first-rate reporting that gives audiences a balanced view of news events centered in Washington. She covered the White House for all eight years of William Jefferson Clinton’s presidency. Her reports can be heard on NPR’s news magazines All Things Considered and Morning Edition.
Jennifer Michael Hecht
Jennifer Michael Hecht is a poet, historian, essayist, and commentator. She is the author of Doubt: A History: The Great Doubters and Their Legacy of Innovation from Socrates and Jesus to Thomas Jefferson and Emily Dickinson. She has also written The End of the Soul: Scientific Modernity, Aetheism, and Anthropology. Her best-known volume of poetry is Funny. She also has written several journals, including A History of Ideas.
Steve McIntosh is an American philosopher and president of the Institute for Cultural Evolution think tank (‘ICE’). ICE focuses on the cultural foundations of America’s political dysfunction, working to expand the scope of what voters can value. In 2017 McIntosh is co-authoring a book describing an innovative new form of politics based on optimism and creativity. McIntosh’s recent 2015 book, The Presence of the Infinite, applied ICE’s philosophy of cultural evolution to help harmonize Eastern and Western forms of spirituality.
Sylvie Simmons has written about music since the late 1970s and is one of the rare women included among the rock writing elite. She is the author of fiction and non-fiction books; the most recent is I’m Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen (2012). The New York Times called it “the definitive Cohen portrait, fearless and smart. Mesmerizing.” Sylvie is also a singer-songwriter and recording artist. She’ll be bringing her ukulele and will sing some Cohen songs.
“I heard there was a secret chord” A memorial tribute to Leonard Cohen
Workshop: The Rock Chick
An interactive workshop on interviewing a rock star, literary celebrity, or anyone you want to write about. Participants are given limited information about their subject, and they adapt questions accordingly to elicit the information they need.
Musician in Residence
Bill Carter blends his work as a jazz composer and his calling as a
Presbyterian pastor. Walking the dotted line between the sacred and the
secular, he preaches sermons each week at First Presbyterian Church of
Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania, and makes music with jazz musicians throughout
the northeast. A graduate of Binghamton University (SUNY) and Princeton
Theological Seminary, he has taught jazz piano at Marywood University in
Scranton, Pennsylvania, for the past fifteen years. Over the course of his
career, he has made music with Phil Woods, Dave Brubeck, Bobby McFerrin,
and David Liebman, among many others. He is the author of eight books, and
travels widely as a speaker, teacher, workshop leader, and jazz pianist.
Ellen Carroll, like Barack Obama, began her career with “Baskin Robbins 31 Flavors,” went on to work as a copywriter, an appearance agent for children’s authors and illustrators, and an events coordinator for Paul Newman’s “The Hole in The Wall Gang Camps.” She received her MA in literature from University College London and currently does stand up comedy and live talk shows. She is also a wife, mother, quilter, and professional grudge holder.
How Awfully Forgiving of Me
Artist in Residence
Daryl Thetford works in photography-based digital media and collage. His work has appeared in solo exhibits in galleries around the country, including the Gallery at Penn College, Williamsport, PA; the Lubeznik Center for the Arts in Michigan City, Indiana; the Coffman Gallery at the University of Minnesota at Minneapolis, the Contemporary and Modern Art Fair, San Francisco, CA; and many group shows, including the Annenberg Space in Los Angeles. His work hangs in many corporate collections, including commissioned works for a luxury hotel (Hotel at The University of Maryland in College Park); works for ESA Architectural headquarters in Nashville; and individual pieces in other corporate offices, including Sony Music Headquarters in Nashville.
Donna J. Fetzko, MS, RYT, offers yoga classes for all levels. She is co-owner of Heart to Heart Wellness, LLC, a studio in Tunkhannock, PA. She is certified through Yoga Alliance and trained in the Yogafit style. As a yoga instructor and health educator, Donna takes a holistic approach to wellness. She has shared the benefits of yoga in the community for 10 years.
Begin the day focused and energized with the ancient practice of yoga. Yoga is an ideal exercise to promote overall health, strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular conditioning. Classes are suitable for all levels and presented in the user-friendly, demystified, safe, and effective Yogafit style. Come prepared with comfortable clothes, a mat, towel or blanket, water, and be prepared to enjoy the enlightening experience of yoga.
Panel on Climate Change
Bernie McGurl is a fourth generation native of the Lackawanna Valley. He studied Public Administration at the University of Scranton, Geology and Earth Science at Keystone College and Cabinet Making at Johnson College. Between 1970 and 1990 he served in various occupations in the railroad and construction industries. He was a co –founder of the Lackawanna River Conservation Association (LRCA) in 1987 and has served as Executive Director of the LRCA since 1991. He also serves as a member of the boards of directors of several regional conservation, community development and human services agencies.
is Vice President, Corporate Development at Gentex Corporation. In this role, Mr. Pullo is responsible for providing leadership in high-level Business Development efforts and the evaluation of strategic opportunities, with particular focus on international growth and technology acquisition.
A proud 1969 alumnus of Keystone, Mr. Pullo also holds a BA in Economics from Wilkes University and an MBA with a concentration in Operations Management from the University of Scranton. He is also a graduate of the Executive Master of Science in Technology Management (EMTM) program at the University of Pennsylvania, an advanced degree program in strategic technology management conferred jointly by the School of Engineering and Applied Science and the Wharton School.
Liska C. Chan is associate professor of landscape architecture and leader of the Overlook Farm Field School in northeastern Pennsylvania.