Past Speakers 2020

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September 20, 2020 – Rick Sickles discussed non-fiction book Yuval Noah Harari’s, Sapiens–A Brief History of Humankind.

September 13, 2020 – Nancy Robbinson, Exe. Dir. of United Against Poverty, spoke about the mission and success of UP Orlando.  Their mission is to serve those in poverty by providing crisis care, case management, transformative education, food and household subsidy, employment training and placement, personal empowerment training and active referrals to other collaborative social service providers.

September 6, 2020 – Gary Cain President and CEO since 1994  of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida. Club members are provided with academic support, extracurricular opportunities, and positive adult role models. The clubs are serving 16,236 young people, 91% of whom qualify for free or reduced school lunches.

August 30, 2020 – Wrangle.  A discussion of Nu Class giving through donations from The Shirley Scott Endowment balance of $8,300, left with the Nu Class after Shirley’s death 4 and a half years ago.  The outcome of this discussion was choosing the  charity(s) to distribute funds  to right away. For a list of charities chosen click the “Donations” tab above. Host John Richard, NU Class President.

August 23, 2020 – Retired Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court Charles Wells, Part Two. Discussed concerns about multiple voting problems in the  forthcoming November Presidential Election.

August 16, 2020 – Retired Chief Justice of Florida Supreme Court Charles Wells, Part One. Discussed contested elections, counting electoral votes, and fixed dates to count and electoral votes at the State and Congressional levels – December 8 and January 6, 2020 respectively.

August 9, 2020 – Orlando’s Co-Founder, Jack McGill and President, Sherry Paramore, from ELEVATE Orlando, an educational, non-profit organization designed to meet the complex needs of at-risk youth by providing character classes and life skills training through the public-school system with the goal of empowering youth to become successful, responsible adults. Jack  Sherry  Xinia    

August 2, 2020 – Host John Richard, NU Class President. A Class Wrangle.

July 26, 2020 – Rev Jim Coffin, Executive Director of the Interfaith Council. His presentation was titled: “Calamities, Catastrophes, Covid-19 and Other Things that Show How Really Ticked-Off God Is … Or Not.”  Is every calamity God-manufactured and God-managed? Are human groups to blame for stirring up God’s wrath?

July 19, 2020 – Rev. Katrina Jenkins, M.Div., Dean of Religious and Spiritual Life at Rollins College.

July 12, 2020 – Jill Pelaez Baumgaertner, poet editor of The Christian Century Magazine, author of the essay “The Impossible, Essential Task of Writing Poetry After Auschwitz,” among other writings, talked about her own awakening and introduced us to several Jewish poets who ask unanswerable questions.

July 5, 2020 – Anna Eskamani, Representative in Florida House of Representatives, discussing current legislative issues. 

June 28, 2020 – Eric Camarillo, founder of SALT (Service and Love Together), discussing SALT’s outreach to the homeless in downtown Orlando including the trailer he brings to the First Church driveway three times a week, providing showers, food, clothes and other services.

June 21, 2020 – Rev, Dr. Vance Rains, Lead Pastor, First Church Orlando, His Mission Trips to Guatemala

June 14, 2020 – Jennifer Sandoval, Jennifer Sandoval, Ph.D, Associate Professor and the Program Coordinator for Communication and Conflict at the Nicholson School of Communication and Media at the University of Central Florida. Speaking on “Reproductive Justice.”

June 7, 2020 – Frank Gilbert, Director of the Test Development and Measurement (TDM) Department of Orange County Public Schools,responsible for the testing of students in the 7th largest school district in the country.  “COVID-19 Student Academic Study–How bad will it be, and what can be done about it.”

May 31, 2020 – Lora Gilbert, Senior Director of Food and Nutrition Services for Orange County Public Schools. How OCPS (under her direction) is feeding over 100,000 kids under stay-at-home orders with the Pandemic.  She is responsible to the 7th largest school district in the nation, 226 schools, 1,624 Food Service Employees, 39 million meals served in school year 2016, 1 million meals every week.

May 24, 2020 – Scott Maxwell.  “The Gospel of Good News. Why we need it. Why we share it. Why so many people ignore it.”

May 17, 2020 – Pastor Emily Sterling talked and showed  pictures of her “Reflections from the Holy Land” based on the recent visit she made there and the amazing impact it had on her life.

May 10, 2020 – Dr. Larry E. Webb  spoke from his and Jean’s home in North Carolina on the Topic:  “Making Sense of Life’s Changes.”

May 3, 2020 – Pastor Ron Lee spoke for 20 minutes about Luther’s time of isolation after participants were invited to talk for a few minutes about  their lives during this isolation time.

April 26, 2020 – Rev. Dr. James A. Harnish. A biblical basis for Earth Day, entitled “Can You Hear Creation?” based on Romans 8:18-27.

March 8, 2020 – Suzzi Machalek, infection specialist=coordinator.  How viruses operate and how our behaviors affect transmission.

February 23, 2020 – Ron Lee, Retired Lutheran Minister. Session 2: Building on our knowledge of each of our personal, God-given gifts, we will examine various spiritual habits, and how they impact our life of faith. We will also explore ways to make congregational worship more vital and inclusive for the wide variety of spiritual “soul” types.

February 16, 2020 – Ron Lee, Retired Lutheran Minister. Session 1: We will examine our personal, God-given gifts and our wide variety of spiritual “soul” types.