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Below is an alphabetical list of the presenters at the Institute for Learning in Retirement.

Adams, Kathy

She is a retired Business and Computer teacher from North Royalton High School. She received her BA and MA from BW. She previously taught computer skills for the ILR in 2017. 

Atkinson, Renee C.

She is a writer, artist and local history speaker. Her debut novel, "Rum Run" was selected for Ohianan and inclusion in the state's library.  She lectures local history for lifelong learning courses,libraries and organizations, and was a recurrent program speaker for Case Western Reserve University's STEM program. 

Auble, Donald C.

Holds a BA from Baldwin Wallace and an MS from the Scripps School of Journalism, Ohio University. He owned Jaeger Advertising, a full service ad agency, for over 20 years. He taught marketing and advertising classes as an adjunct professor at Baldwin Wallace for many years. Interests including flying, sailing, family and travel.

Bailey, William

William Bailey received a B.A. and M.A. in History and a Ph.D. in Financial Planning from Texas Tech University and a M.Th. from SMU. He has taught elementary to medical school students. He served on the faculty of several universities ranging from the University of Wyoming and IUPUI to more than 20+ years at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. He and his extended family recently moved to Rocky River.

Baron, Dan

Is a member of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, West Shore Bar Association, Akron Bar Association and Elder Counsel. He focuses his practice in the areas of estate planning and elder law. Dan is a published author and creator of Dollars and Sense© magazine. In 2019 he was nominated by his professional peers as “Ohio’s Super Lawyer, rising star.”

Bartasavich, Vera

Vera Bartasavich earned graduate degrees in Health Education and Nutrition Education and is a Certified Health Education Specialist. Vera has 30+ years of experience in the food industry. She enjoys presenting health and wellness topics in a variety of settings.

Barto, Robin

Is a Master Martial Arts instructor and a retired Psychotherapist with over 50 years involvement in Chinese arts, including Karate, Tai Chi and Qigong. He holds a 7th degree Black Belt in Karate and is certified to teach Tai Chi and Qigong.

Berzins, Gail

Graduated from Miami University (Ohio) with a degree in education. She spent 13 years teaching home economics. She has been digital scrapbooking since 2010. She has a passion for helping people preserve and tell their stories for future generations.

Blackmon, Patricia

Is in her fourth term at the Eighth District Court of Appeals in Cuyahoga County. She earned the H. Jones Award in History and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in three disciplines: African-American Studies, Political Science and History from Tougaloo College in Mississippi. Judge Blackmon received her Juris Doctorate from Cleveland Marshall College of Law at Cleveland State University. She served as Chief Prosecutor for the City of Cleveland and was the city’s first night prosecutor. She also served as Assistant Director of the Victims/Witness Program and was a part-time professor at Dyke College. She became the first African-American woman elected to the Court of Appeals for the State of Ohio, Eighth Judicial District.

Boyer Sagert, Kelly

Is a full-time, freelance writer who has traditionally published numerous biographies, written scripts for plays and documentaries and ghostwritten memoirs. She teaches writing online and in person.

Brauning, Bill

Bill Brauning spent his prior career 35 years in the field of Education, in both direct and Supervisory activities. Alongside that, he has been playing music since 1964 playing all styles from rock, R&B to Jazz and Latin and toured, recorded and recently composed and arranged his own compositions. For the past 15 years, he has been presenting PopCulture Programs to local colleges and universities, libraries and senior communities. He focuses on the mediums of Television, Film, Hollywood Musicals and all decades of music. LET'S GET POP CULTURED!

Brown, Carolyn

Carolyn Brown is a wife, mother, grandmother, homemaker and quiltmaker. A Baldwin Wallace graduate, she retired from a career in accounting and now enjoys the increased time she can spend on quilting. She has been quilting for 45 years. She has made more than 100 quilts, 40 or so within just the last two years.

Caperton, Shannon

Shannon Caperton, L.Ac was inspired to become an acupuncturist after witnessing the power of this type of medicine. It improved the health of family members struggling with health issues and who were bereft of relief using standard medical care. She attended graduate school at Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in Chicago where she earned her Masters in Traditional Chinese Medicine. During her time in Chicago she was privileged to work in underserved communities at the Project Vida clinic in the Little Villages neighborhood on the city's west side, as well as at Chicago Women's Health Center. In addition to these experiences, she worked extensively in the school's student clinic, which prepared her for working with a diverse population and gave her the experience to treat a wide variety of disorders. Shannon is nationally certified by the NCCAOM , as well as licensed by the Ohio Medical Board. She lives in Medina, OH and enjoys spending time with her dog and hiking in the Metroparks in her spare time.

Cleary, Ann

Is a National Board Certified teacher in Adolescent and Young Adult Science. She taught 9th grade Earth and Space Science for over 30 years. She hopes to make topics simple and easily understood.

Croy, Gary

Taught both "American Tradition" and "Advanced Placement United States History" at Berea High School. He also served as a faculty consultant for the College Board’s United States History Exam for eleven years. Following his retirement from Berea High School, he taught the U.S. History and European History survey classes at Baldwin Wallace for five years. He is a member of the Berea City School District Distinguished Staff Hall of Fame.

Darling, Deborah

Debbie Darling is a singer and speaker. She has sung with The Tommy Dorsey Band, Peter Duchin and many notable Cleveland musicians and has presented her musical talks all over the country.

Deutsch, Melanie

The former fiction specialist for the Cuyahoga County Public Library, has a Bachelor of Arts in English and Spanish from Cleveland State University and a Master of Arts in Library Science from Case Western Reserve University. With 27 years experience in public libraries, she has presented workshops for national and state library organizations and has facilitated a local book discussion group for over 20 years. She has presented courses for the ILR on nonfiction books, mysteries and other book related topics.

Dougherty, Joseph

Is a graduate of Western Kentucky University with a Bachelor of Arts in History and Political Science. He has a Master of Arts in Contracts and Acquisition Management from Florida Institute of Technology and a Master of Arts (equivalent) in Military History from the National Defense University. His military includes Infantry Officer Basic course, Quartermaster Officer Advanced Course, the Army Command and General Staff College and the War College for Logisticians at the Industrial College of the Armed Forces.

Fassett, Bert

Has a BA and MA from Cleveland State University. He taught in the Lakewood School System for 25 years. In 1994 and 2002 was named “Educator of the Year.” In 2016 he was selected for the “Lakewood Staff Hall of Fame.” He also coached middle school basketball for 15 years. He has been married for 42 years and has two sons.

Gramlich, Jane

Jane Gramlich has been a genealogy librarian at the Akron-Summit County Public Library since 2007. She holds a M.A. in History and M.L.I.S. from Kent State University.

Greenberg, Barbara

Barbara Greenberg received a Bachelor of Science - Education from The Ohio State University. She taught junior and senior high school in Columbus and Cleveland, Ohio and has many years of adult education teaching experience. She received a J.D. degree from Cleveland-Marshall College of Law and is admitted to the Bars of the State of Ohio and the United States Supreme Court.

Halstead, Suzanne

Has an MA in education from Concordia University and a BFA in studio arts and art education from Syracuse University. She is an artist, educator and museum professional, having taught art in public schools, colleges, galleries, studios and museums throughout her career. She has worked extensively in many cultural and museum environments as an educator and exhibits and program developer. Suzanne believes in enabling and empowering others so each may find and explore his or her own creative energies.

Harmon, Andrew

Was awarded a Master of Divinity from the Asbury Theological Seminary. He also has a Master of Arts degree in Russian History from the University of Chicago and a Bachelor of Arts in History from North Dakota State University. He has been pastor of St. Matthew Church in North Royalton for over 29 years.

Higgins, Bette Lou

Bette Lou Higgins holds a M.Ed. from Cleveland State and a BA in theatre from Baldwin Wallace. She researches, writes and performs programs designed to make history meaningful for all ages.

Horne, Douglas

Douglas Horne graduated from The Ohio State University in 1974. He served with the U.S Navy in various capacities for 20 years. From 1995-1998, he held a critical position on the the staff of the JFK Assassination Records Review Board, where he headed the military records team. Doug also worked for the U. S. Holocaust Memorial Museum from 1998-2001 and completed his 40 years of Federal Service with the State Department, retiring in 2016.

Imhoff, Doug

Earned both a BA and MBA at Baldwin Wallace University. He is a Certified Public Accountant and worked as an internal auditor in various management positions for several companies in the Cleveland area. In addition, he has a lifelong interest in American and World history, government and politics.

Kemock, Lude

Is a licensed real estate broker in Ohio and has been practicing real estate for over 45 years. He has taught real estate at several Northeast Ohio colleges for over 30 years and recently retired from his final position as national director of transitions and implementation at Coldwell Banker Real Estate Corporate Office in Madison, New Jersey where he worked for over 30 years previously as a manager, national trainer, business consultant and innovator of marketing and training tools. He is currently associate broker at Coldwell Banker Schmidt Realty in Westlake.

Kolecki, Joe

Joe Kolecki is a planetary physicist who worked at NASA for almost 40 years. His work involved environmental studies in space and on planetary surfaces to provide data for future spacecraft, surface landers and life support systems in piloted missions.

Kolk, Mary Ruth

Has produced a DVD set and authored a book titled “How We Beat Diabetes.” She was president of LIVE Multimedia and a past vice president of Cleveland Advertising Association, and a former member of Toastmasters and the Cleveland Coach Federation. Her extensive research and study on diabetes and her hands-on success have brought her numerous speaking engagements, including those at The Ohio State School of Medicine and Humana Health Center.

Kusak, Doug

Is an Historical Interpreter with Cleveland Metroparks (since 2007), a part- time Guest Engagement Specialist with Great Lakes Science Center (since 2002), as well as on the Steamship William G. Mather Museum (since 2003). From mid-May through mid- October, he can be found leading the two-hour Cuyahoga “River By Boat” programs on Cle2 – the 17-passenger Cleveland Metroparks excursion vessel.

MacKeigan, Judy

Judy MacKeigan is currently serving as Historian/Archivist for Cleveland Metroparks. She joined the park system in 2010 while completing her MA in History from Cleveland State University. Judy has the joy and privilege of researching, compiling and sharing the history of Cleveland Metroparks as well as local history of the many communities in the Metroparks district. She was lead author and chief editor of the book The 100 Year Trail: A Centennial Celebration of Cleveland Metroparks and she served on the Centennial Celebration steering committee.

Maurer, Mel

Has a Bachelor of Science from John Carroll University. His education includes many historical symposia focused on Abraham Lincoln. He is past president and historian of the Cleveland Civil War Round table, and has appeared in several of its plays. He is a lifetime member of the Lincoln Forum. For 43 years he was Manager of Administrative Quality and Distribution for the Boston Weatherhead Division of Dana Corporation. In retirement he is a writer, speaker and actor.

Meehan, Terry

Earned a BBA in marketing from Cleveland State University and an MA in literature and film from Kent State University. He teaches film appreciation at Lorain County Community College and at several adult education programs, including the Cleveland Film Society. At Chautauqua Institution, he has presented the Movies of Alfred Hitchcock and Early Western Films. He also curates and presents a monthly film series.

Miller, Sue Ann

Sue Ann earned a BS in Clothing & Textiles and Home Economics from The Ohio State University. After a 14 year career in retail management at The May Company, Sue began her teaching career at Parma City Schools and then Berea City Schools. Sue taught Family & Consumer Science classes. After earning her Masters of Educational Technology at BW, she taught computer classes (Grades 5-12) and then served in the role of the district instructional technology coach at Berea until she retired in 2020. Sue is a Google Education Certified Trainer and teaches adult education classes at Polaris Career Center.

Napoleon, Ed

Is the president of Tutis Security Consulting and Training, LLC, an adjunct instructor at BW, and has over 30 years of information technology and information security experience. He is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and a Certified Information Security Manager (CISM). Edward, now retired, was lead principal in Ernst & Young’s Global Information Security practice. He received his bachelor’s degree from Baldwin Wallace University and a Master of Science degree from Cleveland State University.

Nemeth, Gerry

Earned degrees in Electronic Engineering Technology from Tri-C and CSU. He previously worked in the electronics industry for several major corporations. He is currently employed at Tri-C and LCCC as a Math Instructor.

Neuzil, Ken

Earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degree from Kent State University. He taught social studies at the high school level for 38 years, specializing in world history. For several years he taught a class on Eastern cultures and was asked to create a course and develop the curriculum for a class in Great Religions and A History of Ethics, which is still being taught at the high school. After retiring in 2004, Ken taught a graduate-level class on literacy for Walsh University offered through Communicate Institute.

O'Connor, Patrick

Patrick O'Connor is an Emeritus Professor, now retired from Kent State University college of Education. Patrick does a lot of writing and enjoys biking and kayaking with his wife, Sue. He considers himself semi-retired and keeps busy with small consulting projects, does some teaching and writes a monthly Blog for Boomer and Beyond.

O'Leary, Patrick

M.S., M.Div., is an international management consultant specializing in conflict resolution, leadership development and coaching small group effectiveness. He is co-author of an original textbook on personality theory that has been published in seven languages. He is the author of the first Enneagram textbook. He will present information and facilitate group dynamics that provide tools and skills to improve communication, relationships, conflict resolution and emotional intelligence.

Olszewski, Mike

Is a veteran radio-TV-print journalist currently teaching college level courses on mass media and pop culture. Along with his wife, Janice, he is co-author of a series of highly acclaimed books about local media history and personalities.

Prusinoski, Beryl

Received a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Case Western Reserve University and a Master of Science in Statistics from Purdue University. Beryl worked in the chemical industry for more than 40 years. Upon retirement, Beryl decided to take her extensive collection of history books to form the basis for ILR classes. London is her particular interest, since that is where her parents met during the war.

Richardson, Barbara

Barbara Richardson directs currently all creative aspects of Emerald & Violet Studio in Olmsted Falls. She graduated from Cooper School of Art and earned her Interior Design Certification from New York School of Interior Design. Her career began at Glidden as a Color Consultant, then Manager and later Director of Color Marketing for AkzoNobel, North America. Barbara wishes to inspire individuals with color and creativity.

Sadowski, Beverly A.

Earned a BA in history and psychology and an MA in Education from Baldwin Wallace University. She taught in the Berea City Schools until her retirement in 2014. Bev continues to speak on both the JFK and RFK assassinations throughout the local area to a myriad of groups, including libraries in Cuyahoga and Medina County.

Scanlan, Patrick

Received a PhD degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Modern Chinese History. He has visited China on numerous occasions. He also spent some years in countries contiguous to China.

Scavuzzo, David

Received a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Akron and a Master of Divinity from Ashland Theological Seminary. He has served the United Methodist Church for 33 years. His current position is senior pastor at Strongsville United Methodist Church.

Slack, Judi

Judi Slack received her bachelor's degree from Iowa State University and Master's degree in Education from Cleveland State University. Her early career days were as a psychiatric social worker. The remaining years of her career were spent as an elementary teacher and then as an administrator. She has taught education courses at Cleveland State, University of Akron and Notre Dame. Tea has been a lifelong passion and she has four different certificates from the World Tea Academy: Tea Specialist, Tea Professional, Tea Sommelier, Tea Health Expert.

Smith, Ted

Is a graduate of Baldwin Wallace. His interests and research are in traditional Chinese medicine, history, current events, science and theology. In his personal quest for balance, he has done considerable independent research into various spiritual, historical and sociological practices in an effort to see what has worked for and against humanity’s quest for balance.

Sowden, Carrie

Earned a graduate degree from Texas A & M University. She is the Archaeological Director of the National Museum of the Great Lakes. She has participated in digs in Lake Erie and the Ohio and Mississippi rivers. Carrie currently divides her time on new archaeological digs and giving lectures on Great Lakes history.

Spears, Aaron

Earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Motion Picture Theory, History and Criticism from Wright State University, and a Master of Science degree in Library and Information Science from Kent State University. For 13 years, he managed the Cedar Lee Theater, with five years on the selection Committee for the Cleveland International Film Festival.

Stropko-O'Leary, Patricia

Has 55 years of emergency room and hospice nursing that includes 23 years as a hospice administrator. She has an MBA in Health Care Administration from Baldwin Wallace College as well as a B.S. in Health Care Administration and is a Registered Nurse.

Tanke, JoAnn

Earned a Bachelor of Arts in Education at Otterbein College and studied for a Master of Science degree in family therapy at the University of Akron. She taught French and home economics in the Maple Heights and Berea School Systems for 31 years in grades 6-12. She has traveled with and led student trips to Europe several times.

Townsend, Beth

Beth is a recently retired registered nurse who has 35 years of experience in spiritual formation, healthcare leadership and graduate nursing education. For 10 years, Beth was the director of a spirituality center sponsored by the Ascension Healthcare System where she created programs on how to integrate spirituality into day-to-day life and work throughout the life span. She is certified in Formative Spirituality through the Pittsburgh-based Epiphany Association, holds a master's degree in nursing administration from Indiana University and a doctorate in adult education from Walden University. Beth has extensive experience in leading retreats founded on the principles and practices of spiritual development and has given numerous presentations on the topic of spiritual formation. She strives to help others distinguish between spirituality and religion and to learn how to apply spiritual principles in everyday life.

Weber, Susan

Susan Weber received her Bachelor of Arts from Heidelberg College, her Masters of Education from Ashland University, and her Masters of English Literature from Cleveland State University. She taught English for 36 years with the Elyria City Schools. She was also an adjunct professor at Lorain County Community College for 20 years.

Wido, Diane D.

Taught African pastors in Guinea from 1986-1996 as a professor and nurse. In June 2000 she married widower, Air Force Chaplain Bob Wido. She had unknowingly studied at Alliance Theological Seminary with him in the 1980s! She enjoyed Air Force service alongside him through retirement in 2015. Though she has a BSN and an MPS degree, her passion is making the fascinating characters of the Bible vibrant and relevant.

Wido, Robert W.

Is a retired Air Force Chaplain. He is ordained by the Christian and Missionary Alliance. He holds a Master of Divinity, a Master of Arts in Family Therapy and Doctor of Ministry degree. Over his 34-year Air Force career, Chaplain Bob has worked side by side with literally hundreds of clergy persons from nearly every religious background. His wife is a former missionary nurse to West Africa.

Witkowski, Linda

Holds a Master of Arts degree in modern language and literature from Case Western Reserve University where she did several years of fellowship teaching. She is recently retired, having spent 50 years in the computer technology field, witnessing the emergence of this fascinating industry. She has also performed at area theaters for countless years, more recently working with ‘Women in History’ and the Downtown Cleveland Historic Gateway Walking Tour program “Take a Hike.”

Zak, Betty

Received Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts degrees. She has been a college educator for over 30 years serving as lead faculty and area chair, adjunct professor and presenter/lecturer at conferences, at the Cleveland Museum of Art, a 2017 Emmy nominated production and numerous other events. Some of her distinctions are: YWCA Woman of Professional Excellence Award. Outstanding Faculty Award, Recipient of 2015 Scholar of the Year Award and 2016 Lead Faculty/Area Chair Award.

Zawatsky, Michael

Received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, summa cum laude, from The Ohio State University. He earned the designation of Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor and Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist from the College for Financial Planning. He is also a Certified Financial Educator and is president of the Lake Erie Chapter of the Society for Financial Awareness.

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