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Osher Presenter Biographies

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Fall 2018 Presenter Biographies

Explore this page to read the biographies for each of our presenters for the fall semester. Simply click on the presenter’s name to reveal their biography.


Lectures:

Walt Adams — Notorious Criminals of Idaho's Past


Walt Adams is a 25 year Boise resident with an interest in history. He is a graduate forester and holds a Master of Business Administration. He spent forty-three years in the forest products industry, first as a forester and then as a corporate security manager. In retirement, he now turns his investigative skills to searching out little known historical facts and locations.

Dr. Leslie Durham and Kathleen Keys — Building Boise State's School of the Arts

Dr. Leslie Durham is the Interim Dean of Boise State University’s College of Arts and Sciences and a Professor in the Department of Theatre, Film, and Creative Writing. She is the author of three books: Staging Gertrude Stein: Absence, Culture, and the Landscape of the American Alternative Theatre; Theatre Lives: An Introduction to Theatre; and Women’s Voices on American Stages in the Early Twenty-First Century: Sarah Ruhl and Her Contemporaries. Her current research projects on the ways universities support the arts ecologies in small cities in the Intermountain West and on Latino cultural expression in Idaho neighborhoods are supported by funding from the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities.

Kathleen Keys is the Interim Director of Boise State University’s School of the Arts and a Professor in the Department of Art. Her research has appeared in the Journal of Cultural Research in Art Education, Visual Arts Research, Journal of Social Theory in Art Education, and several National Art Education Association anthologies. Her current research includes various education-based, critical writings on the life and work of Idaho artist James Castle and the collaborative development of the James Castle Curriculum Project, where she works with several educators, artists, and arts organization partners from across Idaho. Keys is completing her eighth year as a Boise Art Museum Board Trustee.

Ted Epperly, MD — Idaho's Journey with Health, Healthcare, and Medical Education: If Not Now, When?

Ted Epperly, MD, is the President and CEO of the Family Medicine Residency of Idaho, a large Federally Qualified Teaching Health Center. He received a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Anthropology from Utah State University in 1976 and graduated from the University of Washington School of Medicine in 1980.  Dr. Epperly completed his residency in Family Medicine at Madigan Army Medical Center, Fort Lewis, Washington in 1983. He currently serves as the Governor appointed Chairman of the Board for the Idaho Healthcare Coalition that is in charge of helping transform healthcare for the State of Idaho. Dr. Epperly is a member of multiple other Boards of Directors and the President of several non-profit organizations. He has published over 50 articles and book chapters and is a staunch supporter of family medicine education, research, and both rural and underserved healthcare. Outside of medicine, his interests include golf, skiing, fly-fishing, reading, and rock drumming.

Dr. Brian Jackson — Alien Worlds, Alien Life

Dr. Brian Jackson is a planetary astronomer and Assistant Professor of Physics at Boise State University. Before coming to Boise State, he was a postdoctoral fellow at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and also at the Carnegie Institution of Washington’s Department of Terrestrial Magnetism in Washington, D.C. He received a Bachelor of Science in Physics from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a PhD in Planetary Science from the University of Arizona. His research focuses primarily on orbital dynamics and transit observations of extrasolar planets, planets outside of our solar system. Dr. Jackson also does planetary science fieldwork, notably on Death Valley’s Racetrack Playa and on terrestrial and Martian dust devils.

Josh Johnston — A Human's Guide to Artificial Intelligence

Josh Johnston is an Artificial Intelligence Scientist who exploits information, automates decisions, and focuses attention on relevant data. He received a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University and a Master of Science in Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University. Josh has led research teams fighting credit card fraud and building autonomous and remotely operated robots for Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), NASA, Army, Air Force, and Navy labs. His past programs include taking a team to the semi-finals of the DARPA Urban Challenge self-driving vehicle competition, developing autonomy and visualization for explosive ordnance disposal robots, designing the electro-optical/infrared sensor solution for the Sea Hunter unmanned anti-submarine warfare vessel, and creating scientific visualizations in Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality.

Greg Kaltenecker and Teague Scott — Critically Endangered Vultures of Gorongosa National Park

Greg Kaltenecker received a Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Master of Science in Raptor Biology from Boise State University. He co-founded the Intermountain Bird Observatory (IBO) in 1993 with his major professor, Dr. Marc Bechard. IBO was created when Kaltenecker and colleagues discovered that the Boise Ridge is a significant raptor migration concentration point. They decided that a long-term study of bird migration was in order, and created a unique research program intimately connected to Boise State to accomplish this goal. He daydreams often of his favorite outdoor pursuit: saltwater fly fishing. Greg and his family vacation to the salt as much as possible to chase this passion.

Teague Scott is a master’s candidate in the Raptor Biology Program at Boise State University. His research focuses on the movement ecology of two critically endangered species of vulture in Gorongosa National Park: the White-headed Vulture and the White-backed Vulture. He is particularly interested in the birds’ habitat and resource use within and outside of the protected area and the conservation implications associated with massive home ranges. He began working with raptors during his undergraduate studies at University of California, Santa Cruz, and has been working with the IBO since 2012. Throughout his years chasing birds in Idaho, Teague became hooked on the state’s wild places. In his free time, he loves getting lost in the wilderness while camping, birding, foraging, and botanizing.

Oni Kinberg — Music and Memory: Dementia and the Power of Music

Oni Kinberg received a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Oregon. After working for a few years as a certified nursing assistant pursuing Alzheimer’s care, he decided to pursue a career in helping people through the aging process. Oni received a Master of Social Work from the University of Wisconsin—Madison and has since become the Director of Social Work at the Idaho State Veterans Home. Oni also serves as the Dementia Partnership lead for the State of Idaho, President of the iCare coalition, and serves on the Idaho Health Care Association Education Committee.

Karl LeClair — City of Boise's Public Art Collection

Karl LeClair is a versatile arts professional and trusted emissary of the City of Boise Department of Arts & History. Karl has focused his attention and resources in the public art realm, working with and promoting the work of emerging and established Boise artists. He currently leads the process of initiating and managing new public artworks for the City and its partners. In addition to being an energetic and trusted team player in the Department of Arts & History, Karl is a superb printmaker, maintaining an active artist studio practice.

Detective Mike Miraglia — Human Trafficking in Idaho'

Detective Mike Miraglia has been an Idaho law enforcement officer for over 18 years and has served as a member of the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force and the Boise Police Gang Unit. He is currently assigned to the Boise Police Violent Crimes Unit. In partnership with local and federal agencies, Mike has successfully investigated several local and regional sex trafficking organizations.

Dr. Bob H. Reinhardt — Variola Vanished? The Complicated History and Legacy of the Smallpox Eradication

Dr. Bob H. Reinhardt is an Assistant Professor of History at Boise State University and author of The End of a Global Pox: America and the Eradication of Smallpox in the Cold War Era (2015). He teaches, researches, and writes in the fields of environmental history, public history, the history of public health, and the history of the American West. Bob received a Bachelor of Arts from Willamette University, a Master of Arts in History from the University of Oregon, and a PhD in History from the University of California, Davis. Prior to joining Boise State in 2017, Bob served as Executive Director of the Willamette Heritage Center, a five-acre museum in Salem, Oregon.

Dr. Martin Seidenfeld — The Iliad and The Ramayana: Universal Tales of Passion and Struggle

Dr. Martin Seidenfeld received a PhD in Psychology from Boston University in 1966 and has practiced in Boise for many years. Besides his clinical work and university teaching, Dr. Seidenfeld provides consulting to organizations on management issues and organizational stress. He is currently deeply involved in the Death with Dignity movement. In recent years, he has been an enthusiastic student of history, anthropology, mythology, and related topics. He has presented lectures and seminars on these subjects to numerous groups in the U.S., Europe, India, and East Asia.

Pamela Kleibrink Thompson — Women in Animation at Walt Disney Studios

Pamela Kleibrink Thompson worked in animation as production manager on The Simpsons and the “Amazing Stories” episode of Family Dog. She recruited animators for Disney’s Mulan and was a lunchtime lecturer on women and animation at Disney. She also recruited for animation and visual effects companies in Europe, Asia, and North America and was named a top recruiter by Animation Magazine. She is a founding member of Women in Animation and a member of the Visual Effects Society and speaks about animation careers at conferences and universities from Singapore to Stuttgart. She is a career coach specializing in helping creative people succeed.

Michael Keyes and Jon Turnipseed — Burning Man: Where Disneyland meets Mad Max

Michael Keyes earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Loyola Marymount University. His passions lie with traveling the world and serving as an elected city councilman. He is an adventure lover and a dedicated tinkerer.

Jon Turnipseed is a retired Safety Engineer who worked in the Space industry and is a retired Major from the United States Air Force. He has been an Osher Institute member for the last four years and serves on the Track 2 Curriculum Committee (Engineering and Technology).

Michael has participated in Burning man twice, Jon once, and both can’t wait to return in August. Both participate in art project workshops at Xanadu in Boise (a burner community makerspace) and are part of the crew for Joule, an art car, and Illumicone, an interactive light sculpture.

Mary Beth Whitaker and Scot Oliver — Exploring the Songwriting Process

Mary Beth Whitaker began writing songs in 1985 and has performed since she was 3 years old. She has sung madrigal, classical, Slavic, Celtic, American folk and original music. She is a Yale graduate.

Scot Oliver has lived in Grangeville, Moscow, and Boise after moving west from the southern Appalachians. He is a singer, songwriter, and guitar maker drawing from an array of influences.

Whitaker & Oliver have played music on stage together for over five years—but much longer in living rooms. They perform a mix of original songs and covers at many local venues, including every First Friday at Boise’s High Note Cafe. They participate in the Idaho Songwriters Association and Sisters in Songwriting.


Short Courses:

Ralph Bild — The Greatest Intelligence Successes and Failures of the CIA

Ralph Bild is a retired intelligence analyst who served in the Central Intelligence Agency from 1973-2000. As an analyst, his primary duties involved providing timely reports and estimates on political and economic developments in key countries of interest to U.S. policy makers. His career spanned assignments in the Agency’s Near East, East European, and East Asian Divisions. Ralph also helped guide intelligence collection efforts in the field and worked out of CIA field stations in Europe and Asia. Ralph was selected for the DCI Exceptional Intelligence Analyst Program and received four exceptional performance awards over his career. He received a Bachelor of Arts in History from Oberlin College and a Master of Arts in International Studies from The John Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. Following his retirement from the CIA, Ralph began a new career as a teacher at Borah Senior High School where he taught economics and world history for 12 years before retiring again in 2014.

Dr. Megan Dixon — The Russian Intelligentsia: Past and Present

Dr. Megan Dixon received a PhD in Russian and Polish literature and a PhD in Urban Geography with a focus on Russia. She is fluent in Russian and has traveled to Russia several times since her first trip in 1989. She has studied Russian visual art and music of the early 20th century, Russian and Polish poetry, and urban development and migration issues in contemporary Russia.

Jennifer Drake — Leonard Bernstein

Jennifer Drake, one of the most enthusiastic musicians you will ever meet, is a conductor, violinist, teacher, clinician, and camp director. Known for her versatility, humor, and energy, Jennifer has been a transformative force for the arts in Boise since 1999. Jennifer is the Music Director of the Serenata Orchestra, the assistant conductor and principal violist for the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival, and was recently named the Interim Music Director for the Boise Philharmonic Youth Orchestra.

Steven Feldstein — Statecraft in a Turbulent World

Steven Feldstein is an Associate Professor and holder of the Frank and Bethine Church Chair of Public Affairs at Boise State University. He also serves as a nonresident fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University and a Juris Doctorate from Berkeley School of Law. Before coming to Boise State, Steve was a deputy assistant secretary for democracy, human rights, and labor at the State Department. He previously served as the director of policy for the U.S. Agency for International Development. Steve has also served as counsel on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee under Chairmen Joseph Biden and John Kerry. His articles and commentary have appeared in Foreign Affairs, The National Interest, National Endowment for Democracy, Newsweek, U.S. News & World Report, World Politics Review, The Hill, and The Conversation.

Susie Fisher — They Should Have Been Famous: Women Artists 1500-1800

Susie Fisher taught drawing, painting, and art history at Eagle High School for over two decades. She is a versatile artist whose work has been on display in the Boise Art Museum and nationally. In retirement, she has been able to delve more deeply into her favorite art topics. Her presentations include hundreds of beautiful images and remarkable details. With enthusiasm and energy, she engages her listeners in the drama and magic of art history. Susie received her Bachelor of Science degree from Kansas State University and has done post-graduate work at the University of Kansas and Boise State University.

Chuck Folkner — A Brief History of Science: Gravity Edition

Chuck Folkner received a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from the University of New Mexico and a Master of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Wyoming. He worked at the Hanford Nuclear Site managing nuclear waste and as a civilian Nuclear Engineer at the U.S. Navy’s Puget Sound Naval Shipyard. At the Shipyard, Chuck was assigned to automate the process of managing radiation dosimeters, despite being unqualified for the job. He continued to take on computer-related work, spending less time at his nuclear engineering desk, and after several years he was transferred to the computing department. In 1997, he was offered a job at the then-relatively-small Starbucks Coffee Company in Seattle. With the exception of a brief stint at a dot-com internet startup, he spent the rest of his working career at Starbucks in coffee business computing. In 2012, he retired and joined his brother, sister, and mom in decidedly sunnier Boise, where he travels, walks the dog, and completes the occasional home project.

Dr. Eric Yensen and Mike Heckler — Climate Change: Science and Response

Dr. Eric Yensen received a Bachelor of Science from The College of Idaho, a Master of Arts from Oregon State University, and a PhD from University of Arizona. He is an adjunct professor at Boise State University and Professor Emeritus of Biology at The College of Idaho where he taught for 33 years. He was also Professor of Animal Science at Michigan State University. Dr. Yensen won the Idaho Academy of Science Distinguished Scientist Award in 2008 and the Idaho Chapter of The Wildlife Society Charles R. Harris Lifetime Achievement Award in 2015. He is the author of over 60 peer-reviewed technical articles and 10 book chapters and is editor/co-author of three books.

Mike Heckler is chair of the energy committee for the Idaho chapter of the Sierra Club. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting, a Master of Business Administration in Finance, and a PhD in Jurisprudence. Early in his business career, Mike worked in economic and financial analysis at a large commercial bank and managed high-value computing service contracts for an aerospace company. Later he exported rocket stages and associated launch equipment from states of the former Soviet Union and acquired launch licenses for an international satellite launch partnership. More recently, Mike directed the development of two utility-scale wind farms in Southeast Idaho before retiring and taking on his current volunteer role in the Sierra Club.

Dr. Heike Henderson— Contemporary Germany: Culture, Politics, and Current Challenges

Dr. Heike Henderson is Professor of German and Associate Chair of the Department of World Languages at Boise State University. She was born and raised in Germany and holds a PhD in German Literature with a designated emphasis in Feminist Theory and Research from the University of California, Davis. Her research interests include crime fiction, intercultural relations, and literary representations of food in contemporary German literature. At Boise State, she has taught a wide variety of classes on German language, literature, and culture, as well as workshops on international food culture and food films.

Dr. Manda Hicks — Communication, Gender, and Difference

Dr. Manda Hicks is an Associate Professor for the Department of Communication at Boise State University. She received a Master of Arts in Communication at Boise State University and a PhD at Bowling Green State University. Her research interests include communication theories, feminist theories, qualitative methods, rhetoric, gender, culture, identity, and war. Dr. Hicks also serves as the Director of Forensics for the reigning Pi Kappa Delta national champions, Boise State University’s Speech and Debate Team, The Talkin’ Broncos.

Dr. Elizabeth Hunt — Fierce Lions, Monstrous Centaurs, and Half-Men: Marginalia in Medieval Art

Dr. Elizabeth Hunt is an adjunct faculty member for the University Foundations program at Boise State University. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Art History and Museum Studies from Rhodes College and a PhD in Art History and Archaeology from University of Missouri-Columbia. She has published essays on the social contexts of marginal imagery, heraldry, material culture, and the urban fabric of northern European towns in late medieval art. Her book, Illuminating the Borders of Northern French and Flemish Manuscripts (Routledge 2007), examines marginal images appearing in devotional books, encyclopedia, and romances during the late-thirteenth century. Her forthcoming study,The Count’s (Im)Pious Prayers: The Psalter of Guy of Dampierre, contextualizes a family of deluxe books destined for the court of Flanders.

John Jannuzzi — Weather, Western Style

John Jannuzzi is a fellow of the American Meteorological Society and a member of the National Weather Association. He spent 19 years as the Meteorologist-in-Charge of the Boise National Weather Service Forecast Office, and took assignments at six different weather offices across the western U.S. He recently retired in 2011. After retirement, John served as an adjunct faculty member at Boise State University and taught Introduction to Meteorology. He stays busy by serving at his church, reading, walking, biking, kayaking, and pursuing hobbies of  photography and astronomy.

Marc Johnson — The U.S. Senate in American History

Marc Johnson has worked as a broadcast journalist, a top aide to Idaho Governor Cecil D. Andrus, and as a public affairs and communications consultant. He retired from Gallatin Public Affairs in 2017 and now lives on the north coast of Oregon. With a passion for history and politics, Marc writes a blog, “Many Things Considered,” and produces and hosts a podcast. His writing on politics and policy has appeared in the New York Times,California Journal of Politics and Policy, The Blue Review, and Montana: The Magazine of Western History. He has presented on numerous subjects at Osher Institutes at Boise State University and the University of Arizona. The University of Oklahoma Press will publish Marc’s political biography of Montana Senator Burton K. Wheeler in early 2019.

Dr. David Lachiondo — The Basques: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

Dr. David Lachiondo is the former Director of the Basque Studies Program at Boise State University. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Saint Mary’s College of California, a Master of Education in Guidance and Counseling from Idaho State University, and a PhD from the University of Idaho with a dissertation focused on education law. He completed his 41 year career in secondary education serving as a teacher, counselor, and administrator in both public and private schools.

Dr. Rick Leahy — Greek Tragedy: The Death of Agamemnon

Dr. Rick Leahy is Professor Emeritus of English at Boise State University. He received a Bachelor of Science in English from the University of San Francisco, a Master of Arts from the University of Iowa, and a PhD from the University of California, Davis. He taught at Boise State from 1971 to 2003. His PhD training was in medieval English literature, but he changed to the field of composition and rhetoric while working at Boise State. In addition to teaching, he served as Director of Boise State’s Writing Center and the Writing Across the Curriculum program. He has been happy to pursue his lifelong interest in the Greek and Roman classics while teaching at the Osher Institute.

Aaron Leonard — The Bureau and the Folksingers

Aaron Leonard is the author of Heavy Radicals: The FBI’s Secret War on America’s Maoists (2015) and A Threat of the First Magnitude—FBI Counterintelligence & Infiltration: From the Communist Party to the Revolutionary Union 1962-1974 (2018). He received a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science with a concentration in history from New York University and is a regular contributor to the History News Network, Truthout</em, and other publications.

Dr. Clyde Moneyhun — The History of Rhetoric

Dr. Clyde Moneyhun is an Associate Professor of English at Boise State University. He received a PhD in Rhetoric from the University of Arizona and has published research on Ancient Greek and medieval European rhetoric, with special attention to Ramon Llull (1232-1316).

Paul Nelson — A Tour of the Mysterious World of the Atom

Paul Nelson is recently retired from Micron Technology where he was Senior Engineer in the Dynamic RAM Division working on new generations of memory chips. While there he taught Python programming courses as well as other topics related to Computer-Aided Design. Paul received his Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Fresno State University and his Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Wyoming. Paul has also worked at AT&T Bell Laboratories designing telecom infrastructure equipment, participated with the future-microprocessor design team at Intel, worked on NASA contracts for science satellites at Ball Aerospace, and was a professor for 7 years at Fresno State in the electrical engineering department.

Del Parkinson — Chopin: Poet of the Piano

Del Parkinson began studying piano at age five in his hometown of Blackfoot, Idaho. He received a Doctor of Music from Indiana University, a postgraduate diploma from The Juilliard School, and he was the recipient of a Fulbright-Hays grant for graduate study in London. Del was Coordinator of Piano Instruction at Brigham Young University—Idaho for eight years before joining Boise State University as a Professor of Music. His London debut recital was on the American Bicentennial Series, and his New York debut recital in Carnegie Recital Hall was sponsored by the Idaho Commission on the Arts.  He has performed with the Guadalajara Symphony, the Indiana University Symphony, the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, the Utah Symphony, and the Boise Philharmonic. He is featured on four compact disc recordings and is the recipient of the Boise State University Foundation Scholar Award for creative activity, the Boise Mayor’s Award for artistic excellence, the Morrison Center honor medallion, the Idaho Commission on the Arts career fellowship award, and the Idaho Governor’s Award for excellence in the arts.

Dr. Tara Penry — The Original Cowboy Romance: Owen Wister's The Virginian

Dr. Tara Penry is a Professor of English at Boise State University, where she has taught and published on 19th-century and western American literature since 2000. Some of her past Osher Institute classes have studied American sentimentalism, the literature of the Civil War, and Wallace Stegner and Mary Hallock Foote. In her 2017 course on Idaho-Montana writer Mary Clearman Blew, she began studying cowboys in fiction from a contemporary feminist point of view. The course she is presenting this semester, “The Original Cowboy Romance: Owen Wister’s The Virginian,” continues the investigation begun in 2017 by leaping back to a foundational novel of 1902, the source of many later images of the American cowboy and frontier justice.

Barbara Perry Bauer — Camps, Company Towns, and Rural Villages of Southwest Idaho

Barbara Perry Bauer is a historian and preservationist with a passion for all things Boise.  She received a Bachelor of Arts in History from Boise State University in 1985 and a Master of Arts in Public History from Boise State in 2000. She is a founding member of TAG Historical Research and Consulting, a public history consulting firm established in 1993.  She is the author of South Boise Scrapbook: A Neighborhood History, Treasure Valley’s Electric Railway and Legendary Locals of Boise. Barbara has a special interest in the history of neighborhoods and urban development and loves to share history through presentations, walking, and bike tours.

Lance Thompson — John Ford Westerns

Lance Thompson is an award-winning consultant to the motion picture advertising industry and currently works as a script doctor and actor. He has written for television and is a veteran of hundreds of motion picture ad campaigns for studios including Paramount, 20th Century Fox, and Disney. His writing and photography have appeared in over 40 magazines and major newspapers across the country. He is the founding president of Idaho Media Professionals and has previously presented Osher Institute courses on directors Alfred Hitchcock and Howard Hawks.

Will Whelan — A Journey Down the Snake: Understanding Idaho's Great River

Will Whelan received a Bachelor of Arts in History from Yale University, and a Juris Doctor from the University of Oregon. Since 2001, he has been the Director of  Government Relations for the Idaho Chapter of The Nature Conservancy in Idaho. Prior to joining The Nature Conservancy, Will worked for the Natural Resources Division of the Idaho Attorney General’s Office, where his assignments included Columbia Basin salmon, hydropower issues, and water policy. Will was an adjunct faculty member at Boise State University and the University of Idaho, where he taught courses on Idaho salmon, wildlife law, and environmental law. Will has a lifelong passion for learning about nature and visiting wild places. He started visiting the Northern Rockies from his home in Florida at the age of 16. His connection to the region inspired him to study environmental law and pursue a career in conservation. Will lives in Boise with his wife, Mary Beth, and enjoys backpacking, rafting, fishing, and skiing.

Dr. Shelton Woods — China Between 1936-1956

Dr. Shelton Woods spent the first eighteen years of his life in Southeast Asia. He moved to the United States for university training, receiving a Master of Arts in Modern Chinese History from California State University, Northridge, and a PhD in Southeast Asian History from University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Following three years of teaching at UCLA, he accepted a position in the History Department at Boise State University in 1994. His professional passions include teaching, writing, and conducting research. He has served in Boise State’s administration for the past seventeen years in the roles of Associate Dean and Dean. He is married to Karen Woods, a professional artist, and they have one son who holds the title, Dr. Woods in Mechanical Engineering.

Dr. Eric Yensen — Making Ecosystems Healthy Again

Dr. Eric Yensen received a Bachelor of Science from The College of Idaho, a Master of Arts from Oregon State University, and a PhD from University of Arizona. He is an adjunct professor at Boise State University and Professor Emeritus of Biology at The College of Idaho where he taught for 33 years. He was also Professor of Animal Science at Michigan State University. Dr. Yensen won the Idaho Academy of Science Distinguished Scientist Award in 2008 and the Idaho Chapter of The Wildlife Society Charles R. Harris Lifetime Achievement Award in 2015. He is the author of over 60 peer-reviewed technical articles and 10 book chapters and is editor/co-author of three books.


Seminars and Workshops:

Dr. David Adler — The First and Second Amendments

Dr. David Adler, President of The Alturas Institute, has lectured nationally and internationally on the Constitution and presidential power. His scholarly writings have been invoked by the U.S. Supreme Court, the Justice Department, the White House and by both Democrats and Republicans in Congress. He has taught courses on the Constitution at all three of Idaho’s universities. At Idaho State University, he served as Director of the Center for the Study of the Constitution. At the University of Idaho, he was the James and Louise McClure Professor of Public Policy, served as Director of the McClure Center, and was a member of the faculty of the College of Law. At Boise State University, he was the Cecil D. Andrus Professor of Public Policy and served as the Director of the Andrus Center.

Terra Feast — Introduction to Drawing with the Boise Art Museum

Terra Feast is the Curator of Education at the Boise Art Museum. She began her career at the Tucson Museum of Art and joined Boise Art Museum as the Associate Curator of Education in 2005.  Altogether, she has fifteen years of experience in museum education. Terra received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from The College of Idaho and a Master of Arts in Art Education from Boise State University.

Chuck Folkner — The Ascent of Gravity by Marcus Chown

Chuck Folkner received a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from the University of New Mexico and a Master of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Wyoming. He worked at the Hanford Nuclear Site managing nuclear waste and as a civilian Nuclear Engineer at the U.S. Navy’s Puget Sound Naval Shipyard. At the Shipyard, Chuck was assigned to automate the process of managing radiation dosimeters, despite being unqualified for the job. He continued to take on computer-related work, spending less time at his nuclear engineering desk, and after several years he was transferred to the computing department. In 1997, he was offered a job at the then-relatively-small Starbucks Coffee Company in Seattle. With the exception of a brief stint at a dot-com internet startup, he spent the rest of his working career at Starbucks in coffee business computing. In 2012, he retired and joined his brother, sister, and mom in decidedly sunnier Boise, where he travels, walks the dog, and completes the occasional home project.

Lonnie Morgan — Apps for Your iOS and Android Mobile Devices

Lonnie Morgan has a background in healthcare and in development of health care delivery software. His career interests included electronics and engineering development for civil and military systems. He is currently retired but enjoys teaching technology and computer-related courses in Arizona and at the Osher Institute.

Darcy Williamson — Medicinal Plants of Boise's Greenbelt and Sagebrush Steppe

Darcy Williamson has spent over thirty years studying, harvesting, and preparing medicinal plants of the Rocky Mountains. As the author of 26 books, Darcy has been selected as a featured speaker for organizations including the Idaho Physicians Association and Idaho Rare Plants Society. She has led more than 300 medicinal plant forays and classes throughout the Rocky Mountains and Pacific Northwest, including many regions of Idaho’s Primitive Area.

Elizabeth Word Gutting — Personal Narratives & Creative Nonfiction: A Writing Workshop

Elizabeth Word Gutting is the Program Coordinator of the Master of Fine Arts (MFA) program in Creative Writing at Boise State University. Her essays have appeared in The New York Times, and her writing has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Millions, Humanities, and Juked, among others. Before moving to Boise, she served as the program director of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation in Washington, D.C. She received her MFA from George Mason University and her Bachelor of Arts from Kenyon College, where she studied English and Creative Writing.


Special Events:

Steve Sweet and Melinda Jean Stafford — Beekeeping in Boise

Steve Sweet is a professional engineer and a graduate of University of California, Davis, where he took the first of many beekeeping courses and participated in a campus work-study program at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility. Since then, he has kept bees continuously in California, Washington, and Idaho. Steve helped found and remains active in the Treasure Valley Beekeepers Club and is President of the Western Apicultural Society. Steve is a certified Journey Beekeeper through the Oregon Master Beekeeper Program at Oregon State University and is currently working to satisfy Master Beekeeper requirements.

Melinda Jean Stafford is the club advisor to Boise State University’s beekeeping club, The Bee Team, and is President of the Treasure Valley Beekeepers Club. As a hobbyist beekeeper, Melinda Jean has developed a series of educational materials for D&B Supply, including classes, blogs, podcasts, and video tutorials targeted to new and aspiring beekeepers. When she is not busy with beekeeping, Melinda Jean works at Boise State as Assistant Director of the Student Involvement and Leadership Center.

Tate Mason — The Peregrine Fund and Archives of Falconry Tour

Tate Mason is the Director of the World Center for Birds of Prey. He received Bachelor of Science in Biology from Western Washington University and a Master of Science in Raptor Biology from Boise State University. Tate has traveled widely in pursuit of birds and has worked with a multitude of conservation-related projects. His interests are birding, bicycling, and banjo picking.

Dr. Amy Moll and Dr. Elton Graugnard — Materials Science Lab Tour

 Dr. Amy Moll is a Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Boise State University. She received a Bachelor of Science in Ceramic Engineering from the University of Illinois, Urbana in 1987. She also received a Master of Science and a PhD in Materials Science and Engineering from University of California, Berkeley in 1992 and 1994. Following graduate school, Amy worked for Hewlett Packard in San Jose, California, and in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Amy’s research interests include microelectronic packaging, semiconductor materials, and engineering education. Amy especially enjoys teaching the Introduction to Engineering and Introduction to Materials Science courses.

Dr. Elton Graugnard is an Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Boise State University. He received his PhD in Physics from Purdue University in 2000 and completed post-doctoral positions at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and the Georgia Institute of Technology. His research interests are atomic layer deposition, scanning probe microscopy, and DNA-based nanotechnology, which he pursues as a member of the Nanoscale Materials and Device Group. Prior to joining Boise State, Dr. Graugnard taught physics at Rollins College and involved students in photonic crystals and atomic layer deposition research. He is a recipient of a 2013 Osher Faculty Research Grant for his work on developing nanoscale optical materials for electronic computer circuits.

James Patrick — Morrison Center Tour

James Patrick is the Executive Director of the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts on the campus of Boise State University. He received a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, and a Master of Fine Arts in Performing Arts Management from the City University of New York (CUNY). As the Chief Executive Officer of Idaho’s premier performing arts center, he reports directly to the University President. James oversees all day-to-day operations including the artistic programming of the main theatre as well as various arts education programs. The Morrison Center is regularly ranked as one of the top university performing arts centers in the nation. Prior to the Morrison Center, James was Executive Director of the historic Warner Theatre in Torrington, Connecticut. Prior to that, he worked for CUNY as the Director of the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center on 34th Street and 5th Ave. in New York City. His previous experience in the arts also includes managerial positions at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, New Jersey’s Union County Arts Center, Renaissance and Celebrity Cruises, as well as producing his own projects in film and theatre. James was a professional actor for 6 years, with his most recognizable role being “Dr. Jacobs” on the soap opera Another World.