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Our Speakers

LOUIS MASUR
LOUIS MASUR

"Learning from Lincoln"
October 13, 2021

Louis Masur is a Distinguished Professor of American Studies and History at Rutgers University. A graduate of the University at Buffalo and Princeton University, he is a cultural historian who has written on a variety of topics. His most recent work is "Lincoln's Last Speech: Wartime Reconstruction & The Crisis of Reunion (2015), and Lincoln's Hundred Days: The Emancipation Proclamation and the War for the Union (2012). Masur's essays and reviews have appeared in many well-known newspapers including the New York Times, and Boston Globe. This session is titled "Learning from Lincoln." We will learn that Abraham Lincoln was born in humble circumstances, had only a year of formal schooling, struggled with mood swings, and endured repeated political disappointments. Yet he became a prosperous lawyer, skilled debater, masterful writer and ranks with Washington in the pantheon of American presidents. A century and a half after his assassination, his life still offers critical lessons about leadership.

LORI BORGMAN
LORI BORGMAN

"The Lighter Side of Aging"
November 10, 2021

Audiences who have enjoyed columnist Lori Borgman in print, enjoy her even more in person. Like her columns, distributed weekly to more than 300 newspapers in the U.S. and Canada, Lori's presentations are like having coffee with a good friend. Her commentary offers wit, warmth and humor. Lori has spoken at hundreds of fundraisers, civic events, lecture series and Woman's Clubs across the country. In this session, columnist and humorist Lori Borgman looks on the lighter side of aging without the mayo and fat grams. With her characteristic wit and humor, insight and grace, Lori leads audiences on a humorous and poignant romp through the ups and downs, outright shock waves, delights and milestones of getting older.

JAN McINNIS
JAN McINNIS

"Finding the Funny..."
April 13, 2022

Learning doesn't have to be boring! Jan McInnis has a knack for humorous analysis, which enables her to keep audiences laughing. In her Finding the Funny..., she gives practical tips on handling life's curveballs using humor. Her creative guidelines to mastering change are taken from her own experiences leaving the cushy "regular" job and heading out into the bumpy road of comedy.

Over the past 16+ years on the full-time speaking circuit, she has spoken at conferences, training sessions, employee retreats and banquets. Jan was featured in the Wall Street Journal as one of the top convention comedians whose material is clean and in the Washington Post for her clean comedy writing.

Jan has sold comedy material to just about everyone...from the Tonight Show monologue, to greeting cards, hundreds of radio stations and even guests on the "Jerry Springer Show" (yes, some of it is staged). For comedienne and professional speaker Jan McInnis, life is full of "finding the funny." She - and the audiences who continually rate her programs "hilarious" - wouldn't have it any other way.

ELLIOT ENGEL
ELLIOT ENGEL

"The Overbearing Genius of
Frank Lloyd Wright"
May 11, 2022

An Oakland Town Hall favorite, Dr. Engel vividly brings to life Frank Lloyd Wright who is widely recognized as America's greatest architect. With anecdotes, analysis and large doses of humor, Professor Engel explores Wright's personal life and his non-conformist passion that shaped his brilliant professional career.

Professor Elliot Engel is considered one of the most insightful, personable, and entertaining academic keynote speakers. His witty, engaging speaking style imparts hard, factual information, leaving his audiences virtually spellbound, yet charmed by periods of laughter and flashes of insight. He earned his M.A. and Ph.D. as a Woodrow Wilson Fellow at UCLA. While at UCLA he won that university's Outstanding Teacher Award.

Dr. Engel has written ten books published in England, Japan, Turkey, and the United States. His articles have appeared in numerous newspapers and national magazines including Newsweek. He has lectured and delighted audiences throughout the United States and on all the continents including Antarctica.

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