Community Conversations is a series of three events bringing together Waterville faith and community institutions with Colby faculty and students to consider major issues of common concern. This series engages scholars from the field of Jewish studies and civic leaders in order to discuss the intersection of Jewish civilization and current political issues in the United States.
Sunday, January 27, 2019
What is the role of the American family today?
Featuring Naomi Schaefer Riley, Beth Cooper Benjamin, and Adrienne Carmack
The event will take place in the new Chace Community Forum—a communal events space on the first floor of the Bill & Joan Alfond Main Street Commons in Waterville. A light dinner will be served beginning at 6 p.m., followed by desserts from Acadia Cakes, and coffee and tea.
Naomi Schaefer Riley is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, focusing on issues regarding child welfare. She is also a senior fellow at the Independent Women’s Forum. She is a former columnist for the New York Post and a former Wall Street Journal editor and writer, as well as the author of six books, including, Be the Parent: Stop Banning Seesaws and Start Banning Snapchat (2018).
Beth Cooper Benjamin is associate director of The Joseph Stern Center for Social Responsibility Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan. She serves as a vocal advocate for girls in the Jewish communal world and has addressed audiences including the Jewish Funders Network and the Jewish Women’s Foundation of South Palm Beach County, and contributed writing to Sh’ma: A Journal of Jewish Responsibility, the Union for Reform Judaism’s Torah at the Center journal, Moving Traditions’ Rosh Hodesh: It’s a Girl Thing!, and the Journal of Jewish Communal Service.
Adrienne Carmack is a 2018 graduate of Colby College. Originally from Veazie, Maine, Adrienne has a background in community organizing and youth work, She has worked around the state to further progress in gender equity, racial justice, and reproductive rights. She lives in New York City and works at the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Center in youth education services.
Sunday, November 11, 2018, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
What must we give—and give up—to be American?
The event will take place in the new Chace Forum—a communal events space on the first floor of the Bill & Joan Alfond Main Street Commons in Waterville.
Thought leaders: Bethashley Cajuste and Rabbi Erica Asch
Bethashley Cajuste ’20 has been working intimately with the Pugh Administration for two years and has been serving as a domestic violence advocate for five years. She is an Independent Global Health major at Colby with a focus on Women’s Health. Bethashley is also a QuestBridge scholar and mentor.
Rabbi Erica Asch is the spiritual leader of Congregation Beth El in Augusta, and the Hillel advisor and Jewish chaplain at Colby. She received her rabbinic ordination from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2008 and then took a position as a community organizer with the Industrial Areas Foundation, the first rabbi to do so directly out of rabbinical school. After three years with IAF, she served as an assistant rabbi at Temple Sinai in Washington, D.C., before moving to Augusta in 2013.