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TALK Discussion Leaders

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

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Shawn Leigh Alexander 

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Shawn Leigh Alexander is a professor of African and African-American Studies at the University of Kansas. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Shawn Leigh Alexander is a historian for African and African-American Studies at the University of Kansas. He received his Ph.D. in Afro-American Studies from the University of Massachusetts. Alexander joined the TALK program as discussion leader in 2008. 
 

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Randee Baty 

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Randee Baty teaches literature at Labette Community College.

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Randee Baty is an English instructor at Labette Community College in Parson. She received her master’s in English with an emphasis in Literature from Pittsburg State University. Randee's research interests include Arthurian literature, Detective novels and mysteries, Kansas authors, and Shakespeare. She joined HK TALK program as a discussion leader August 2018.  

Annette Billings 

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Annette Billings is an African-American Kansas poet, playwright, actress and nurse, who shares her poetry and prose in speaking events. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Annette Billings is an African-American Kansas poet, playwright, actress and nurse, who shares her poetry and prose in speaking events. Billings has written 2 collections of poetry, one-act plays, and numerous short stories. Her first book of poems titled, A Net Full of Hope,earned the ARTSConnect Arty Award for Literature in 2015. She joined the TALK program as a discussion leader in 2018.

Ann Birney 

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Ann Birney is an independent scholar and partner in Ride into History, an historical performance touring troupe. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Ann Birney is an independent scholar and partner in Ride into History, an historical performance touring troupe. She holds a Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Kansas. Birney has been leading TALK discussion since 1994. 

Lori Brack 

Press Release Bio 1 (Short)  Lori Brack is from Salina in central Kansas who is an author and a poet who has published her latest poetry collection this year titled, Museum Made of Breath. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Lori Brack is from Salina in central Kansas who is an author and a poet who has published her latest poetry collection this year titled, Museum Made of Breath. She received her M.A. in English with a writing emphasis from Western Washington University. Brack is also a journalist, an educator, an artist, editor, and essayist.  

William Clyde Brown 

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) William Clyde Brown is professor emeritus of English and Humanities at Kansas Wesleyan University. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) William Clyde Brown is professor emeritus of English and Humanities at Kansas Wesleyan University. He earned his Ph.D. in literature and religion from the University of Chicago. Brown has been a part of the TALK program since its inception in the early 1980s. 

Valerie Brown-Kuchera

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Valerie Brown-Kuchera coordinates seminars and conferences for the Northwest Kansas Educational Center. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Valerie Brown-Kuchera coordinates seminars and conferences for the Northwest Kansas Educational Service Center. She received her M.A. in literature from Fort Hays State University. Brown-Kuchera joined the TALK program as a discussion leader in 2012. 


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Susan Ann Carlson

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Susan A. Carlson is an English and Modern Languages professor at Pittsburg State University in southeastern Kansas. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Susan A. Carlson is an English and Modern Languages professor at Pittsburg State University in southeastern Kansas. She received her Ph.D. from Ohio State University and her areas of study cover British Romantic and Victorian literature, 19thcentury women writers, and literary theory. 

Michaeline Chance-Reay

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Michaeline Chance-Reay teaches courses in Women's Studies and Education at Kansas State University.

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Michaeline Chance-Reay teaches courses in Women's Studies and Education at Kansas State University. She received her Ph.D. in Humanities Education from Ohio State University. Chance-Reay has been leading TALK discussions since 1999. 

Gene T. Chávez

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Gene T. Chávez is the founder and president of Chávez and Associates, Kansas City.

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Gene T. Chávez is the founder and president of Chávez and Associates, Kansas City. He received his Ed.D. in the philosophical foundations of education from Arizona State University. Chávez is a former member of the Humanities Kansas board of directors and has been leading TALK discussions since 1996.


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Dan Eells

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Dan Eells is a librarian at Newton Public Library.  

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Dan Eells works as a librarian at Newton Public Library in Newton, Kansas. After having earned a B.S. in Information Technology with a Minor in English Literature from McPherson College, Eells also earned a M.L.S. from Emporia State University. In addition, Eells writes book reviews and creates video content for NPL. 

Miranda Ericsson

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Miranda Ericsson is a librarian for the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library, where she specializes in programs for readers and writers..

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Miranda Ericsson is a librarian for the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library, where she specializes in programs for readers and writers.. Ericsson earned her Masters of Library & Information Science from Emporia State University. In her role at the Topeka and Shawnee Public Library, she leads programs and discussion groups that engage readers and writers.  

Dennis Etzel Jr.

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Dennis Etzel Jr. is an instructor of English at Washburn University. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Dennis Etzel Jr. is an instructor of English at Washburn University. He received his M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Kansas. Etzel joined the TALK program in 2012. 


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Steven Foulke

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Steven Foulke is a professor of history at Ottawa University. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Steven Foulke is a professor of history at Ottawa University. He received his Ph.D. in geography from the University of Kansas and his Master's degree in American Studies from the University of Wyoming. Foulke has been leading TALK discussions since 1999. 


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Rachel Waltner Goossen

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Rachel Waltner Goossen is a history professor at Washburn University. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Rachel Waltner Goossen is a history professor at Washburn University specializing in 20th century U.S. and women's history. She received her Ph.D. in history from the University of Kansas. Rachel joined the TALK program in 2008. 


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Randi Hacker 

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Randi Hacker is the former outreach director for the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Kansas. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Randi Hacker is the former outreach director for the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Kansas. She received her M.A. in English as a second language from St. Michael's College. She joined the TALK program in 2008. 

Anne Hawkins

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Anne Hawkins teaches U.S. history at Washburn University, and U.S. and world history to homeschooled youth across northeast Kansas. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Anne Hawkins teaches U.S. history at Washburn University, and U.S. and world history to homeschooled youth across northeast Kansas. She received her M.A. in History from the University of Kansas. Hawkins joined the TALK program as a discussion leader in 2012. 


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Marilyn E. Klaus

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Marilyn E. Klaus is a lecturer with Religious Studies and African and African American Studies at the University of Kansas. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Marilyn E. Klaus is a lecturer with Religious Studies and African and African American Studies at the University of Kansas. She received her M.A. in Religious Studies from the University of Kansas and M.Div. from Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminaries. Klaus joined the TALK program in 2008. 

Sister Rosemary Kolich

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Sister Rosemary Kolich teaches English for the University of Saint Mary. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Sister Rosemary Kolich teaches English for the University of Saint Mary at both the main campus in Leavenworth and the Overland Park campus. Kolich joined the TALK program in 2008.


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Linda M. Lewis

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Linda M. Lewis recently retired from Bethany College where she was professor of English for 27 years. Today she is employed as an editor for Wedgestone Press. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Linda M. Lewis recently retired from Bethany College where she was professor of English for 27 years. She received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Nebraska, moved to Lindsborg, Kansas, immediately upon completion of her degree, and has been a TALK leader since 1989. Lewis is the author of four books and many articles on British writers. Currently, she writes for various journals and is employed as an editor for Wedgestone Press. 

Denise Low

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Denise Low, Kansas Poet Laureate 2007-09, is winner of the 2018 Red Mountain Press Editor’s Choice Award for "Shadow Light."

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Denise Low, Kansas Poet Laureate 2007-09, is winner of the 2018 Red Mountain Press Editor’s Choice Award for "Shadow Light." Other books are "The Turtle’s Beating Heart: One Family’s Story of Lenape Survival," a memoir (U. of Nebraska Press) and "A Casino Bestiary: Poems" (Spartan Press). She co-edits Mammoth Publications, an independent literary press with a focus on Indigenous authors. She edited a selection of poems by William Stafford in an edition with essays by other poets and scholars, "Kansas Poems of William Stafford" (Woodley). She has won 3 Kansas Notable Book Awards, 5 Pushcart Prize nominations, a 2017 Best of the Net nomination. Low has an MFA (Wichita State U.) and Ph.D. (K.U.). She teaches for Baker University’s School of Professional and Graduate Studies. www.deniselow.net


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Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg is the 2009-2013 Poet Laureate of Kansas and the author of over 20 books. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, Ph.D., is the 2009-2013 Kansas Poet Laureate, is the author of over 20 books, including two novels, a non-fiction book on the Holocaust, a bioregional memoir on cancer and community, and six poetry collections. Her recent books are "Miriam's Well," a novel; "Everyday Magic: Fieldnotes on the Mundane and Miraculous," a memoir; and" Chasing Weather," a poetry and photography book co-created with photographer Stephen Locke. Caryn teaches interdisciplinary studies at Goddard College in Vermont through the low-residency Goddard Graduate Institute, which allows us to work with students around the country and reside full-time in Kansas. She is also founder of the Transformative Language Arts program at the college. Caryn leads community writing workshops widely, and with singer Kelley Hunt (with whom she writes songs), Brave Voice writing and singing retreats. Caryn loves traveling Kansas to talk about what brings us meaning and vitality, and she is proud to have served as a TALK scholar since 1992. www.CarynMirriamGoldberg.com


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Al Ortolani

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Al Ortolani is a former English instructor, published poet, the founder and president of Chávez and Associates, and facilitates Vietnam veterans writing workshops as part of the Kansas Stories of the Vietnam War initiative.

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Al Ortolani is a former English instructor, published poet, the founder and president of Chávez and Associates, and facilitates Vietnam veterans writing workshops as part of the Kansas Stories of the Vietnam War initiative. Ortolani published prose, poetry, and collection books include, Slow Stirring Spoon, The Last Hippie of Camp 50, Finding the Edge, Wren’s House, Cooking Chili on the Day of the Dead, Waving Mustard in Surrender, and more.

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Deborah E. Peterson

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Deborah E. Peterson is an instructor of Chinese language and East Asian civilization at the University of Kansas.

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Deborah E. Peterson is an instructor of Chinese language and East Asian civilization at the University of Kansas. She is a Ph.D. candidate in Chinese Anthology with the University of Chicago and received her M.A. in Chinese from the University of Michigan. Peterson joined the TALK program in 2012. 

Erin Pouppirt

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Erin Pouppirt, Overland Park, is an independent scholar. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Erin Pouppirt is an independent scholar. She received her M.A. in Psychology and Counseling from the University of Kansas. Pouppirt joined the TALK program in 2008. 

Thomas Prasch

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Thomas Prasch is a professor and chairs the history department at Washburn University. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Thomas Prasch is a professor and chairs the history department at Washburn University. He received his Ph.D. in history from Indiana University. Prasch has been leading TALK discussion since 1999. 


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No discussion leader with that name.
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Kevin J. Rabas

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Kevin J. Rabas is an associate professor of English at Emporia State University, where he co-directs the Creative Writing Program. He is the 2017-2019 Poet Laureate of Kansas. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Kevin J. Rabas is an associate professor of English at Emporia State University, where he co-directs the Creative Writing Program. He is the 2017-2019 Poet Laureate of Kansas. He received his Ph.D. in English from the University of Kansas. Rabas joined the TALK program in 2008.

Trish Reeves

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Trish Reeves is retired from teaching English at Haskell Indian Nations University. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Trish Reeves is retired from teaching English at Haskell Indian Nations University. She holds a B.J. in journalism from the University of Missouri, and an M.F.A. in creative writing from Warren Wilson College in North Carolina. Reeves has been leading TALK discussions since 1999.

Sara Jane Richter

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Sara Jane Richter is dean of the School of Liberal Arts and professor of English at Oklahoma Panhandle State University in Goodwell, Oklahoma. 

Press Release 2 (Long) Sara Jane Richter is dean of the School of Liberal Arts and professor of English at Oklahoma Panhandle State University in Goodwell, Oklahoma. She received her Ph.D. in English from Oklahoma State University. Richter has been leading TALK discussions since 1991. 


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Martha Ortiz Sanchez

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Martha Ortiz Sanchez is a community educator for the City of Wichita and adjunct for both Friends University and Wichita State University, where she has taught Mexican American History and Spanish. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Martha Ortiz Sanchez is a community educator for the City of Wichita and adjunct for both Friends University and Wichita State University, where she has taught Mexican American History and Spanish. She earned her master's degree from WSU. Sanchez has been leading TALK discussions since 1996. 

Nicolas Shump

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Nicolas Shump teaches history and English at the Barstow School in Kansas City, Missouri.

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Nicolas Shump teaches history and English at the Barstow School in Kansas City, Missouri. He received his M.A. in American Studies from the University of Kansas. Shump joined the TALK program in 2012.

Kim Stanley

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Kim Stanley chairs the Department of Modern Languages at McPherson College. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Kim Stanley chairs the Department of Modern Languages at McPherson College. She received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Texas at Austin. Stanley is a former member of the HK board of directors and has been leading TALK discussions since 1992. 

Margy Stewart

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Margy Stewart is retired from teacing English at Washburn University and is co-founder of the Prairie Heritage Institute. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Margy Stewart is retired from teacing English at Washburn University and is co-founder of the Prairie Heritage Institute. She received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Wisconsin. Stewart joined the TALK program in 2008. 


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John Edgar Tidwell

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) John Edgar Tidwell is a professor of English at the University of Kansas. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) John Edgar Tidwell is a professor of English at the University of Kansas. A native of Independence, he received his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota. Tidwell joined the TALK program in 2008. 

Sara W. Tucker

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Sara W. Tucker is retired from teaching at Washburn University. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Sara W. Tucker is retired from teaching at Washburn University. She holds a Ph.D. in history from Indiana University. Tucker has been leading TALK discussions since 1988. 

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Dana Waters

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Dana Waters taught literature and composition, chaired the Fine Arts and Humanities Division, and she has written extensively on the art of composition. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Dana Waters taught literature and composition, chaired the Fine Arts and Humanities Division, and she has written extensively on the art of composition. She earned her master’s degree in English from Fort Hays State University. She has been a TALK discussion leader since 2009.

Tom Weso

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Tom Weso is an educator, writer, and artist, whose book Good Seeds: A Menominee Indian Food Memoir was a national Gourmand Award winner.

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Tom Weso is an educator, writer, and artist, whose book Good Seeds: A Menominee Indian Food Memoir was a national Gourmand Award winner.Weso has a Masters in Indigenous Studies from the University of Kansas and teaches social science and Native American Studies classes at Kansas City Kansas Community College. 

Sandra Wiechert

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Sandra Wiechert is a native of Wichita with an M.A. in American History from Kansas State University. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Sandra Wiechert is a native of Wichita with an M.A. in American History from Kansas State University. She is the author of Historic Mount Oread:  A Catalog of KU's Landmarks and has received Lawrence's "Phoenix Award for the Literary Arts."

 

Carmaletta Williams

 

Press Release Bio 1 (Short) Carmaletta Williams is a retired English and African American Studies professor from Johnson County Community College. 

Press Release Bio 2 (Long) Carmaletta Williams is a retired English and African American Studies professor from Johnson County Community College. Currently, she writes and edits for Williams Publishing Group, LLC. She received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Kansas specializing in African American literature. She is a published author for both creative and scholarly writing.

 

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