Friday, 3 to 4 p.m., Campus Locations

Following the afternoon seminars each Friday, an "open forum" is held from 3-4 p.m.

The Forum features invited speakers of note, usually from outside Renaissance, who share their views on varied topics with members, followed by lively question-and-answer sessions. The locations vary depending on CSUS availability, so check below. The speakers and locations can change due to campus scheduling, so check here right before each Forum.

Feb. 7: No Forum, but a Special Event: Getting to Know Your Renaissance Society
Del Norte 1004
Come join us on the first day of classes from 3 to 4 p.m. Meet the officers, members of the Board of Directors and committee chairs and hear how Renaissance works. It takes a great deal of planning to create all that we offer in our Activities Catalog each semester. It takes long-range planning also to prepare for our future. We welcome your questions. Hope to see you there!
Feb. 14: Lloyd Connelly, Retired Sacramento County Superior Court Judge
Del Norte 1004
Lloyd Connelly
Career Anecdotes Too Good To Forget, Or, "Did You Really Steal an Alligator from the Zoo?" Connelly recently completed a highly regarded 35-year career as a local, state, and judicial official. He's still handling tough cases when asked to fill in on a part-time basis largely because of his sterling reputation as being careful and fair-minded. He agreed to take on such convoluted, high-profile cases as untangling Colorado River water rights in Imperial County, dealing with local government redevelopment agencies, requiring Sacramento County to pay UC Davis for indigent care and settling a funding dispute on San Francisco 49ers new Santa Clara football stadium. He plans to spend at least portion of his retirement time consulting on thorny legal cases, in addition to traveling and living in several South American countries. His career is one of classic upward mobility. After law school (McGeorge School of Law), Connelly served on the Sacramento City Council and was elected to the state Assembly, where he spent a decade in the Legislature before successfully running for an open Superior Court seat in 1992. He told a Sacramento Bee reporter in late 2012 that 20 years on the bench was long enough.
Feb. 21: Karen Massie, High-Speed Rail Authority Information Officer
Del Norte 1004
Karen Massie
High-Speed Rail: Connecting California. Join Massie of the California High-Speed Rail Authority as she gives us an update on the historic high-speed rail project slated to begin in the Golden State's Central Valley. It's touted as the largest infrastructure project in the U.S. and will put thousands to work. Massie will discuss planning, contract opportunities, funding and the future of high-speed rail. Note: This was postponed from last semester!
Feb. 28: Don Forrester, Physician and Certified Physician Executive
Del Norte 1004
Dan Forrester
Avoiding Chronic Disease and Disability with a Plant-Based, Whole Food Diet. Don Forrester is a Family Medicine physician who is also certified in medical management and quality improvement. He graduated from Lehigh University (Chemical Engineering); received his medical training at Georgetown University; and completed his Family Medicine training at UC Davis. He held leadership positions and worked as a staff physician with Kaiser Permanente for 30 years. Currently, he serves as Medical Director for Meals for Health; staff physician for McDougall Whole Foods program; board member for; and spokesperson for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.
March 7: Jack Ohman, The Sacramento Bee Cartoonist
Redwood Room, Union NOTE: Location Change!
Jack Ohman Jack Toon
Making a Bee Line: Cartooning the Sacramento Scene and California Politics. Jack Ohman will discuss his first year at The Sacramento Bee, and take questions about the art of political cartooning. He joined The Bee in 2013. He previously worked at The Oregonian, the Detroit Free Press and the Columbus Dispatch. His work is syndicated to more than 200 newspapers by Tribune Media Services. Jack has won the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, the Scripps Foundation Award, the national SPJ Award, the National Headliner Award, the Overseas Press Club Award, and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2012 and the Herblock Prize in 2013. He has written and illustrated 10 books, many of them about fly fishing.
March 14: Dr. William Hanford Lee, Founder, The Sacramento Observer
Del Norte 1004
William Hanford Lee
50 Years of Observer History. In November 1962, an unusual four-page newspaper was born, a black publication that became one of the nation's leading African-American newspapers in America, The Sacramento Observer. The principal architect of the publication's fantastic development and growth was Dr. William Hanford Lee, a successful real estate broker and businessman. Few if any of this country's black newspapers can match The Observer's record of publishing a publication the size of 300 pages or top the unprecedented recognition given it for outstanding historical, governmental and youth coverage. Six times The Observer has been named the nation's top black newspaper by receiving the John B. Russwurm trophy, given annually by the National Newspaper Publishers' Association. The newspaper has been honored with over 600 local and national awards for outstanding community service and journalism excellence.
March 21: Dr. Aaron Cohen, Chairman, CSUS History Department NOTE: Speaker change!
Redwood Room, University Union
Aaron Cohen
Russia and the Tug of War over Crimea and the Ukraine. Dr. Cohen is extremely well versed in Russian history; his appearance could not be more timely, given the geopolitical tussle underway over the fate of Crimea and the Ukraine. He is the author of Imagining the Unimaginable: World War, Modern Art and the Politics of Public Culture in Russia. He has written a number of articles for literary journals covering various aspects of Russian history and culture. The courses he has taught include Medieval Russia; Culture and Politics in Imperial Russia; and The Fall of Communism. He has history degrees from Pomona College, the University of Oregon and Johns Hopkins University (PhD).
March 28:
Spring Break; No Forum.
April 4: Diana Dooley, Secretary, State Health and Human Services Agency
Del Norte 1004
Diana Dooley
The Affordable Health Care Act. Secretary Diana Dooley was appointed to lead the California Health and Human Services Agency by Gov. Jerry Brown. As CHHS Secretary, Dooley will serve as a voting, ex-officio member of the newly created California Health Benefit Exchange Board. Prior to leading CHHS, she was President and Chief Executive Officer of the California Children's Hospital Association, which advocates for children's health on behalf of the eight, non-profit regional children's hospitals in California. Dooley began her professional career as an analyst at the State Personnel Board. In 1975, she was appointed to the staff of Gov. Jerry Brown and served as Legislative Director and Special Assistant until the end of his term in 1983. Before becoming an attorney in 1995, she owned a successful public relations and advertising agency. Dooley left her private law practice in December 2000 to become General Counsel and Vice President at Children's Hospital Central California near Fresno. Dooley is a native of Hanford. She received her bachelor's degree in Social Science from California State University, Fresno, in 1972 and her law degree from San Joaquin College of Law in 1995.
April 11: Frances Kakugawa, Writer
Redwood Room, University Union

Frances Kakagawa
I Am Somebody: Dignity in Aging. Frances Kakugawa, who lives in Sacramento, was born and raised on the Big Island of Hawaii in Kapoho, which was demolished by lava when she was 18 years old. She taught for many years in the Michigan and Hawaii public school systems; conducted language arts workshops for teachers in Micronesia and in Hawaii; and was a curriculum writer and lecturer for the University of Hawaii. Today, she writes, conducts writing support groups for caregivers, gives writing workshops for adults and children, and gives lectures on caregiving and writing throughout the U.S. Her books include Breaking the Silence, an essential book for Alzheimer's caregivers; Mosaic Moon: Caregiving through Poetry; three Wordsworth children's books; and Kapoho: Memoir of a Modern Pompeii.
April 18: Allen Fahden, Corporate Trainer NOTE: Speaker Change!
Redwood Room, University Union
Allen Fahden
Since Change is Inevitable, How Can I Just Lie Down, Shut Up and Surrender (What we can Learn from Change) Corporate trainer and former stand-up comic Allen Fahden has traveled all over the world helping people to transform their work, relationships, and purpose. He says we don't mind change; we just don’t want to BE changed. Allen has worked with Fortune 500 companies and celebrity business owners such as Bill Murray. He has been featured in People Magazine, ABC News, and the BBC. A respected member of the Sacramento Speakers Meetup, he has contributed to The One Minute Millionaire by Chicken Soup for the Soul co-author Mark Victor Hansen. He has also spoken at Sacramento's TEDx. In addition to having his own ad agency, Allen has held numerous executive positions including at D'Arcy, Masius, Benton and Bowles.
April 25: Richard Cionco and Natsuki Fukasawa, Concert Pianists
Capistrano Recital Hall
Richard Cionco Natsuki Fukasawa
Four-Handed Piano. Cionco is a Professor of Piano at California State University, Sacramento, and joined the faculty in 1993. He first performed as soloist with orchestra at age nine, and has since performed with many orchestras around the world. He graduated from the University of Maryland and The Juilliard School. A scholarship and fellowship recipient at Juilliard, he was also awarded the Carl M. Roeder Memorial Prize in Piano and upon graduation, the Helen Fay Prize, for exceptional achievement and character. He is also a recipient of a Solo Recitalists Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and a career grant from the Bagby Foundation for the Musical Arts in New York City. Fukasawa is a Fulbright Scholar and has earned her degrees from Juilliard, Prague Academy in the Czech Republic and University of Maryland. She is on the artist faculty for the Orfeo Music Festival in the Italian Alps, and Calcap Chamber Music Workshop in Sacramento. She has taught at CSUS, St. Mary's College of Moraga, and has been a guest faculty at University of South Florida. She also enjoys nurturing the young talents in her own private studio. Both are Steinway Artists (More than 1,600 concert artists and ensembles bear the title Steinway Artist, which means that they have chosen to perform on Steinway pianos exclusively, and each owns a Steinway. None are paid to do so.) as well as being spouses.
May 2:
No Forum.