OLLI Outlook
The Monthly Newsletter of OLLI @Berkeley
November 2012
Election Night Live!
Interest Circles
Fourth Age Salons
OLLI in the News
Faculty Profile: Henry Brady
Volunteer Profile: Mark Medress and Wendy Willrich
OLLI Faculty News and Events
Welcome to "New" Staff
On Campus and Around Town
The Lunch Bunch
Member Benefits and Partner News
2012-13 Academic Calendar
Gift Certificates
Join Our Mailing List!
Donate to OLLI

Find OLLI on Facebook

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OLLI @Berkeley Staff
Susan Hoffman


Program Coordinator
Aileen Kim


Communications Coordinator
Satya Levine


Classroom and Events Coordinator 
Gerard Alcantara 


Research Assistant
Sandra von Doetinchem


Student Staff

Nika Allahverdi,  Vickie Tran My Duong, Stephen Frianeza, Alex Lee, Sabrina Liu, BriAnne Lynn, Alexis Nya, Tina Savong,  Julie Xiao, Wei Zhuo


OLLI @Berkeley
University of California
1925 Walnut St #1570
Berkeley, CA 94720-1570
tel. 510.642.9934
fax. 510.642.2202
Election Night Live! ~ Nov 6

Join OLLI @Berkeley, KALW, and Freight and Salvage for live radio coverage of the election returns with KALW host Rose Aguilar, OLLI @Berkeley instructor and political analyst Larry Bensky, and a long list of expert guests 


Tuesday, November 6, 6:00-11:00 pm

Doors open at 5:00 pm

Freight and Salvage Coffeehouse
2020 Addison St, Berkeley

Free to OLLI @Berkeley members, and UCB students, staff, and faculty (with ID) 

$5 donation at the door


More info | RSVP


We are expecting a large turnout, so RSVP to let us know you're coming and arrive early to get a good seat. 

Interest Circles (Nov 13-Jan 17)

Interest Circles are self-organized discussion or activity groups proposed by members and coordinated by participants. Past Interest Circles have included a Shakespeare play-reading group, Lucille's Lunch Bunch restaurant exploration group, a group centered on the energy crisis, a poetry writing group, several film groups, and an international fiction reading group.   


Sign up for an Interest Circle on a topic from the Fall 2012 term or propose a topic of your own.  


There are two established Interest Circles that are currently open to new members, Mahfouz and Beyond, a book group that reads contemporary literature from the Muslim world, and Friday Lunching Adventures with Lucille Poskanzer. Visit the website to learn more about these groups and how to contact the facilitator


Fourth Age Salons

Are you an OLLI member 80 years of age or older? The Fourth Age Salon is an opportunity for OLLI to better understand your learning needs and interests. All participants must be Annual members. If you haven't registered yet for the year, call 510.642.9934.


A Garden of Social (Media) Delights 

Guest Speaker: Professor Ken Goldberg, UC Berkeley's College of Engineering and School of Information

Monday, November 5, 3:15-4:45 pm (note new time) 

Details and location  


The Ashby Village and the Village Movement   

Guest Speaker: Andy Gaines, Executive Director, Ashby Village 

Monday, December 3, 3:15-4:45 pm (note new time) 

Details and location   


OLLI in the News

Did you see our article in the The (East Bay) Monthly? Director Susan Hoffman was interviewed extensively for a feature article on lifelong learning. Read the article here.


Faculty Profile: Henry Brady

By Linda Lazzeretti


In the upcoming winter term, OLLI @Berkeley will be offering a most interesting course by Henry Brady, Dean of the Goldman School of Public Policy at UC Berkeley.


Dean Brady will focus on the trend toward increased political polarization throughout the nation, specifically in the mass public, Congress, and political parties. During the course of the class, various contributing factors and ways to address them will be explored in detail by Dean Brady and a series of equally distinguished guest speakers (focuses in parentheses):

  • Barbara Sinclair (Congress)
  • Mo Fiorina (Public)
  • Eric Schickler (General polarization themes, including filibuster)
  • John Ellwood (Budgetary & states)
  • Paul Pierson (National)


Additionally, aspects of the very serious January 'fiscal cliff' tax and spending sunset dates, Congressional decisions regarding them, possible slide into deep recession along with a possible recurring yearly $675 billion dollar loss, and negative growth will be discussed and analyzed throughout the weeks during this class.


Dean Brady has a long-standing interest in and commitment to public policy work, having received his Ph.D. in economics and political science from MIT in 1980 and many awards for his contributions to public opinion research. His expertise includes areas of electoral politics, political participation, management information systems, program evaluation, and social welfare policy. He also has considerable experience working at the federal Office of Management and Budget and other organizations in Washington, D.C.


Currently, Dean Brady is focused on providing venues for enlightened citizenry participation in our democracy at this critical junction in its history. He sees the current election as a crucial turning point in how income disparity will manifest, who will be responsible and/or blamed for its distribution, how well Congress will get things done, and how much the demands of a 24-hour media news cycle will influence the entire process.


In providing venues for greater citizen awareness, Dean Brady was on the calendar at the Commonwealth Club of California in October with the subject "A Political Prognosis for the Presidential Race & Its Aftermath." The focus was what we could expect to happen on election night and the shifts that would occur in the political landscape if these expectations were realized. Attending the OLLI class should prove to be an important milestone in the political landscape that will be rigorously informative, thought-provoking, and insightful.


Henry Brady will teach "Polarization and Governing the American Electorate" on Wednesdays, starting January 30 from 2:00-4:00 pm.


Volunteer Profile: Mark Medress and Wendy Willrich

Mark Medress Mark Medress

Where were you born? Green Bay, Wisconsin (Go Packers!)
How long have you been a member of OLLI @Berkeley? Since its initial inception in 2003.
What are your hobbies? Besides taking OLLI courses, spending time with our two daughters and six grandchildren, biking, hiking, swimming, traveling, and theater.
What was the last OLLI course you took, or your favorite one? I've loved history and politics courses, both domestic and international, including those by Harry Kreisler, Bev Crawford, Darius Zahedi, and Gloria Neumeier.
What roles have you had as an OLLI volunteer? I've been co-chair of the Annual Fund Committee with Wendy Willrich for a number of years and have also been class assistant many times.

What do you like most about being an OLLI volunteer? Getting to know more members better, and helping to build and sustain the OLLI @Berkeley community.


Wendy Willrich Wendy Willrich  

I was born and raised in San Francisco and have been a member of OLLI @Berkeley since its original inception in 2003. My hobbies are hiking, tennis, the stock market, and non-profit boards like UC Berkeley's Cal Performances. I also help with literacy training in the 1st grade at the Piedmont Avenue School in Oakland. My favorite OLLI courses include Harry Kreisler's courses, Linda Rugg's "Mark Twain," Curtis Caton's "The Dilemmas Facing our Legal System." I am a co-chair of the Annual Fund Committee and host an annual luncheon honoring the faculty and members who have made significant contributions to the Annual Fund. The thing I like most about being an OLLI volunteer is making new friends.


OLLI Faculty News and Events

Tamim Ansary, the author of Destiny Disrupted: A History of the World through Islamic Eyes, will deliver an accessible history of modern Afghanistan from the Afghan point of view, showing how great power conflicts have interrupted its ongoing, internal struggle to take form as a nation in his talk about his latest book, "Games without Rules: The Often Interrupted History of Afghanistan"  

Thursday, November 15, 7:30 pm at the Hillside Club (2286 Cedar Street, Berkeley)

Tickets: $12 ($7 students, OLLI, and Hillside members in advance only at Brown Paper Tickets online or 800.838.3006) $15 at the door (no discounts at the door)  


Mary Winegarden's collection of poetry, The Translator's Sister, is a winner of the American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation. The awards ceremony, hosted by Ishmael Reed and the Before Columbus Foundation, took place at Wheeler Hall on the UC Berkeley campus on October 7. View the press release.


Lynne Kaufman's new play has premiered at The Marsh in Berkeley. Acid Test is a one-person show about the life and times of Richard Alpert, aka Ram Dass, running from October 18-November 24. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit http://www.themarsh.org/.


Welcome to "New" Staff

We congratulate Sandra von Doetinchem on her new, full-time appointment as OLLI's Research Assistant. In addition, to her ongoing work at OLLI @Berkeley in the field of research, Sandra will now be working on OLLI's travel study program, as well as on the development of new collaborative courses with campus partners.


Sandra holds a German university diploma in adult educational sciences with a focus on older adult education and lifelong learning from the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany, and has worked for various universities and research institutions, including serving as a consultant for the German Institute for Adult Education--Leibniz Center for Lifelong Learning (DIE), Bonn, Germany.  


On Campus and Around Town


The Berkeley Art Museum offers free docent-led tours on the Berry McGee exhibit on Thursdays (12:15 pm) and Sundays (2:00 pm) between September 27 and December 9. For more information, visit: http://www.bampfa.berkeley.edu/events/education 


The Lunch Bunch

by Lucille Poskanzer


Platano Salvadoran Cuisine

2042 University Ave, between Shattuck Ave and Milvia St 




This bright and friendly storefront restaurant is close to the OLLI classrooms and offers moderately priced Salvadoran cooking, which is deliciously different. The portions are hearty. The lunch specials feature pupusas (stuffed thick corn masa tortillas) with various fillings, along with salads and small plates. You can also order from the large plate menu which is slightly more expensive. The Salvadoran meatballs (albondigas) are highly recommended.



Member Benefits and Partner News

Berkeley City Commons Friday Lunch Talks

City Commons Club of Berkeley meets every Friday from 11:45 am to 1:30 pm at the Berkeley City Club (2315 Durant Ave, Berkeley) to promote the lively discussion of topics of interest to Bay Area residents. Come for lunch or just for the talk. For upcoming programs, visit: http://www.citycommonsclub.org/UpcomingPrograms.html 


Berkeley Symphony offers $5 discount to OLLI members

OLLI members for the 2012-2013 year can receive a $5 discount on single advance purchase tickets at the Berkeley Symphony for advance tickets. Use the discount code olli2013. More info


Berkeley Arts and Letters: 50% Discount

Berkeley Arts and Letters offers a 50% student discount to OLLI members on advance tickets purchased through their website. Visit http://berkeleyarts.org for more information.  


Jazz Cafe: 10% Discount
Ongoing through the Spring term, show your OLLI student card and get 10% off on food and non-alcoholic beverages. The Jazz Cafe is located at 2087 Addison Street, just across the street from Freight and Salvage Coffeehouse.


2012-13 Academic Calendar

Open House: January 8
Term: January 28-March 11
Holiday: February 18

Open House: March 12
Term: April 1-May 10

Courses: June 4-27

Term dates through the 2012-13 academic year are available at: http://olli.berkeley.edu/calendar/academicCalendar.html.

Gift Certificates
Share the sweetness of lifelong learning with a friend or loved one. Take a course together, or explore different interests and discuss what you've learned over lunch after class. Gift certificates are available for OLLI memberships, courses, and workshops. Download an order form or contact the OLLI office (510.642.9934) to purchase a gift certificate.