Lecture Series

IMPORTANT information

10:00 - 11:30 am

All lectures are held in the Spring Valley Building, 4801 Massachusetts Ave. NW in either Room A on the First Floor or Room 601 on the Sixth Floor.

Room 601 holds 120 people and Room A holds 105. Reservations are required on Eventbrite. Registration for members opens at 8:30 am on TUESDAY of the preceding week. Registration for the public opens at 8:30 am on THURSDAY of the preceding week. At that time, you may register for each of the following week’s lectures. Your name must be on the Eventbrite list to enter the lecture. You must be seated five minutes before the lecture begins to guarantee your seat.

Note: Most lectures are on Tuesdays or Thursdays, except Edward Doyle-Gillespie’s which is on a Wednesday.

January 2018 Lectures


Tuesday, January 9 — Anthony Fauci, Room 601

What’s Next? Emerging and Re-emerging Infectious Diseases: A Perpetual Challenge
In 2015, a mosquito-borne virus named Zika began spreading in the Western Hemisphere. Identified in Uganda in 1947, it received scant attention until the infection broke out in Latin America and the Caribbean and was associated with an abrupt increase in birth defects. After the initial reports of Zika virus disease in Brazil, the pandemic spread to more than 60 countries and territories. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony S. Fauci will discuss the history of Zika, the biomedical research response, and what has been learned to prevent the next … what?
Anthony S. Fauci, MD, is director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the US National Institutes of Health, where he oversees an extensive research portfolio focused on infectious and immune-mediated diseases. He serves as one of the key advisors to the White House and Department of Health and Human Services on global HIV/AIDS issues, and on initiatives to bolster medical and public health preparedness against emerging infectious disease threats. He is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the National Medal of Science, and the Lasker Award for Public Service.

marcia greenberger LECTURE IS SOLD OUT

Thursday, January 11 — Marcia Greenberger, Room A
Women’s Rights -- Where Have We Been? Where Are We Going?
Today’s news is full of assaults on women’s rights — literally reports of assaults on women and girls, cutbacks on coverage of women’s health care, stubborn pay gaps, and glass ceilings. But women are standing up, demanding safety and equality, and running for office. The history of the women’s movement is progress despite setbacks, and that progress can be repeated.
Marcia Greenberger is the Founder and Co-President Emerita of the National Women’s Law Center. She founded the Center 45 years ago, becoming the first full-time women’s legal advocate in Washington. Author of numerous publications, recipient of many awards including her induction into the National Women’s Hall of Fame, she has been described by The New York Times as leading women’s rights movement’s battles. She has worked on employment, education, health, and income security for women and their families.

*Wednesday, January 17 — Edward Doyle-Gillespie, Room 601
Policeman by Day, Poet by Night

Baltimore Police Officer Edward Doyle-Gillespie patrolled some of the most murderous corridors of the city for 12 years. Now, by day, he conducts training courses for police in ethics, suicide bombers, citizen extremists, and chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear survival. By night, he writes poems. He will share observations about the state of criminal justice in Baltimore and its impact on his poetry. Still, he cannot explain why Baltimore, with a population of 600,000, is on track to have more murders this year than New York City, with a population of more than 8 million.
He will say only that he ruminates on segregation, red-lining, drugs, addiction, and poverty. His latest book is On the Later Addition of Sancho Panza.
Edward Doyle-Gillespie is a member of the Baltimore Police Department. He is a graduate of George Washington University in History and holds an MFA from Johns Hopkins University.
*Note: This lecture is on a Wednesday.
Register on Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/olli-lecture-edward-doyle-gillespie-tickets-41243455285

Thursday, January 18, 2018 — Scott Pearson, Room 601
Why Have Charter Schools?

Almost half of all public-school students in DC now attend public charter schools. How does their performance stack up in comparison to their traditional public-school counterparts? How are public charter schools different from traditional public schools in DC? How much do they cost and who oversees them? Scott Pearson will discuss the roles and record of public charter schools, as well as untangle DC’s educational bureaucracy — from the Deputy Mayor for Education and the State Superintendent of Education to the Chancellor of DC Public Schools — and how charter schools fit into this framework.
Scott Pearson has been Executive Director of the DC Public Charter School Board (DC PCSB) since 2012. He served in the Office of Innovation and Improvement for the US Department of Education in the Obama Administration. He co-founded Leadership Public Schools, a network of college-prep public charter high schools in the San Francisco Bay Area and is currently Board Chair of the National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA). He holds a BA from Wesleyan University, an MPA from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.
Register on Eventbrite:  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/olli-lecture-scott-pearson-tickets-41243651873


Tuesday, January 23, 2018 — William Kloss, Room 601
On Vermeer and His Times
Timed to coincide with the National Gallery of Art’s exhibition, Vermeer and the Masters of Genre Painting, The Great Courses’ immensely popular art historian William Kloss will discuss the art of the seventeenth century. Kloss will take us on a tour of great Northern Baroque art, and explain the interconnections of generations of painters working between 1650 and 1675. He will closely examine Johannes Vermeer, represented today by only 35 extant paintings, who worked during one of the most exciting periods in the golden age of Dutch painting.
William Kloss is an independent art historian and scholar who writes and lectures on a wide range of European and American art. He earned a BA in English and an MA in Art History at Oberlin College. Kloss has taught at the University of Michigan and the University of Virginia, has presented more than 150 courses for the Smithsonian, has lectured for The Art Institute of Chicago and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and has won national awards for his books. Most recently, he coauthored the United States Senate Catalogue of Fine Art.

Thursday, January 25, 2018 — Melanie Nezer, Room 601
65 Million and Counting

There are more refugees and displaced people in the world in 2018 than at any time in recorded history — including after World War II. Refugees have only three “durable solutions” — returning home, integrating into the country to which they have fled, or resettling in a safe third country. The US, traditionally the recipient country of the most refugees, has retreated from its leadership in helping refugees. Few refugees can return home or fully integrate where they are. Solutions seem remote. Melanie Nezer outlines the facts and the demanding road ahead.
Melanie Nezer is senior vice president for HIAS, a venerable organization that serves refugees of all faiths and backgrounds. She previously served as HIAS' migration policy counsel and director of the employment visa program representing at-risk Jewish professionals and religious workers seeking to work in the US during crises in their home countries. Earlier, she was immigration policy director for the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants and practiced criminal defense and immigration law in Miami. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan and Boston College of Law.
Register on Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/olli-lecture-melanie-nezer-tickets-41243901620

Tuesday, January 30, 2018 — Nate Jones, Room 601
Nuclear War by Miscalculation?

Able Archer 83, a 1983 NATO exercise that led the Soviet Union to think it was under nuclear attack, caused the Russians to mobilize to fight back. This close scrape with Armageddon was little known until the National Security Archive unearthed almost a thousand pages of documents from US, British, Politburo, and KGB archives. Able Archer is a hair-raising case study of the risk to national security of deteriorating US-Russia relations, attempts to reintroduce intermediate range nuclear weapons into Europe, and aggressive nuclear posturing on the Korean peninsula.
Nate Jones is the Director of the Freedom of Information Act Project for the National Security Archive. A two-term member of the Federal FOIA Advisory Committee and board member of the American Society of Access Professionals, he holds a master’s degree in Cold War History from the George Washington University and is a Nuclear History Research Fellow at the Odessa Center for Nonproliferation, Ukraine. He edits the blog “Unredacted,” and is the author of  Able Archer 83: The Secret History of the NATO Exercise That Almost Triggered Nuclear War.

Thursday, February 1, 2018 — Frank Smith Jr., Room A
Truly Unknown Soldiers — African Americans in the Civil War

Frank Smith seeks to rectify one of the great injustices of American history, the erasure of the record of African-American soldiers during the Civil War. Soon after war started, slaves began to walk off plantations to join the Union Army. General Benjamin Butler refused to send them back to work for the enemy. He declared them “contraband” of war and eventually 209,000 “colored” men served in the Army and Navy. They fought important battles and took the lead after the Battle of Appomattox in integrating millions of new citizens into the nation. Correcting the narrative of the role of African Americans in their own liberation is Dr. Smith’s mission at the African American Civil War Museum in DC.
Frank Smith, PhD, is the founding executive director of the African American Civil War Museum. He was a founder of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, registered sharecroppers to vote in Holly Springs, Mississippi, and founded a black cooperative community — Strike City. In the 1960s, he worked to support the Mississippi Freedom Party, which attempted to supplant the whites-only state delegation. Upon moving to the District, Smith was elected to the DC Board of Education and then to the DC City Council, where he represented Ward 1 for 16 years. He has served as chair of the DC Housing and Economic Development Committee, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, and the Baseball Commission. He attended Morehouse College.


Why We Are Using Eventbrite
We have been having overflow crowds at many of our lectures. Due to fire code, we have to limit the number of people who can attend lectures. Rather than turn people away at the door,  we have decided to use Eventbrite, which is a free, widely used event-management website and app. Please take the time to read the directions below thoroughly.

How to Use Eventbrite

  1. When you receive the email announcing the lectures, click on the Eventbrite link below the lecture description. That will take you to the Eventbrite page for the lecture.

  2. On the Eventbrite lecture page, click on the green "REGISTER" button on the lower right.

  3. A pop-up window with the lecture name will appear. Select whether you want 1 or 2 tickets. Click on the green "CHECKOUT" button.

  4. You will have 8 minutes to finish your registration. Enter your first name, last name, email address, and confirm your email address. Click on the green "Complete Registration" button. A confirmation screen wlll appear and you will receive an email with your ticket(s). You are done.

You do not need to bring your ticket to the door. We will have a list at the door of individuals with reservations.


OLLI does not endorse any of the viewpoints expressed by the speakers in its series.


We thank the Lecture Committee and all those who suggested and contacted speakers: Paul Brown, Lew Cohen, Martha Cutts, Chuck Edson, Judith Havemann (Chair), Tina Fried Heller, Lynne Heneson, Jeanne Kent, Mary Fran Miklitsch, Stan Newman, Diane Renfroe, Richard Ringell, and Steve Sherman.