Women's History Month Speakers

"Women in Politics and Society"

Professor Ann J. Atkinson chairs the Department of Communication, Philosophy and Journalism at Keene State College and teaches courses in rhetorical criticism, ethics, persuasion and political communication.
In her research, she analyzes the rhetorical strategies employed by women in politics. She contributed a chapter to "Inventing a Voice: The Rhetoric of American First Ladies of the Twentieth Century" called "Lou Henry Hoover: Mining the Possibilities as Leader and First Lady" (2003). Her essay about Frances Perkins will appear in "American Rhetoric in the New Deal Era," Volume 7 of a 10-volume series called "A Rhetorical History of the United States: Significant Moments in American Public Discourse." Currently she is completing a project about May Craig, a political journalist who worked for Gannett newspapers for four decades, beginning in the 1930s.
Atkinson earned her Ph.D. in communication at the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 1996.


Book Reading and Signing

Donna Ciocca, a New Hampshire resident, is an educator at the middle school and university levels. She has long been an authority on children's literature and has been a frequent presenter and keynote speaker at professional conferences and workshops. She has received several awards for her contributions to literacy.

"Harley and Homer," Ciocca's first major book, is aimed at encouraging boys to embrace reading. She shared its development with her students along the way, much to their delight. "Tavern Tales" is a fictional memoir of her childhood growing up in a small town tavern run by her grandparents. The tavern is populated by a broad range of fascinating characters. A native of southeastern Missouri, Ciocca shares the influence of her upbringing with her readers, mixing warmth, poignancy, and humor.

Married with three adult sons and two grandchildren, Ciocca is an avid gardener and creative artist.

Gender Differences and Leadership Development Panelists

Tracey Sherman, human resources manager for CR Bard Inc., develops, interprets and coordinates human resources policies, practices and programs.  She provides staff services in the areas of employee relations, employment, training, compensation, benefits, health and safety and community relations.  She makes human resources recommendations that permit or enhance the accomplishment of short- and long-range objectives for CR Bard, a provider of products and services for the healthcare industry.  She is an alumna of Southern New Hampshire University, where she earned her M.B.A. and B.S. She also holds an SPHR certificate.  

Denise Miano is president and CEO of NEPS Inc., a systems integration and development firm focused on digital technologies, high-end print deployment and enterprise content management strategies.  She was actively involved in the acquisition of NEPS by Moore in April 1996 and the re-launch of NEPS in December 2003. She has more than 23 years experience in systems design and the implementation of leading-edge document management and printing technologies.

Prior to relaunching NEPS, Miano was the vice president of Customer Technologies for Moore Wallace Inc, where she was responsible for developing technical solutions, digital offerings and partner relationships for the company and its customers. She also provided extensive consulting and strategic systems analysis services to Moore Wallace's major customer accounts, focused on print procurement, digital technologies and supply chain management.
With her extensive background in document automation and management, she has become a recognized leader in document management and mid-range to high-end printing strategies and tactical implementation. She has been a featured speaker at industry forums such as Xplor, AIIM and the Financial Document Forum. She also has authored numerous articles for industry publications that include Print on Demand Business, National Underwriter and 3X/400 Systems.

Miano holds a B.S. from Merrimack College in North Andover, Mass., and has completed additional postgraduate work at the University of Massachusetts and Kellogg University. She is a certified Electronic Document Printing (EDP) Professional, and has participated as a member of both the EDSF Sponsorship Committee and the Xplor Vendor Advisory Committee recipient of 2003 HVCO Women of Distinction Award.

Cheryl Abbott, vice president for Community Affairs for the Manchester Monarchs, has been a member of the Monarchs front office since November of 2003. Her role is an integral part of incorporating the Monarchs into the Manchester community and in the state. She oversees the Monarchs' public presence and community involvement through the Monarchs Care Foundation, the Goals for Success Program and the Monarchs D.A.R.E. Graduation Program. She is responsible for orchestrating special fundraising events and oversees all fundraising activities and the disbursement of funds to local community organizations. She also coordinates all mascot and player appearances, and handles requests for promotional items and donations.

"How is a Book Feminine? Gendering the Reading Experience in 19th-Century England"

Katherine D. Harris is an assistant professor at San Jose State University. She recently completed her dissertation, "The Nineteenth-Century British Literary Annual: A Genre's Journey from Nineteenth-Century Popularity to Twenty-First Century Re-Presentation," and has created an online resource for the study of literary annuals, The Forget Me Not: A Hypertextual Archive. With Laura Mandell, Paula Feldman and Eliza Richards, she coedited The Poetess Tradition, an online resource focusing on both British and American 19th-century women authors. Her latest article, "Feminizing the Textual Body: Female Readers Consuming the Literary Annual" (PBSA, December 2005), addresses feminine, bibliographical and textual aspects of the literary annual genre. Her current work has been leading her further into the cultural phenomenon of the book, especially in our digital age. See her full curriculum vita.

Indiegrrl Showcase I Lunchtime Concert

Patti DeRosa: What you get when you cross a singer-songwriter-guitar player, a former steel drummer and a social justice activist. Contemporary, acoustic folk, peppered with rhythm and spice. "A honey warm voice, inventive guitar work and and incisive lyrics . . ." -- Vance Gilbert. DeRosa is back into music after a hiatus as president of Changeworks Consulting (which helps communities and organizations work towards diversity, social justice, and equity). Her new release, "Paradise," is being played on radio stations across the country.

Tara Greenblatt: Accompanied only by her djembe drum, Greenblatt's acoustic, progressive folk is rooted in her passion for storytelling and flows effortlessly from her soulful voice. Traces of R&B, jazz, blues and bluegrass are woven into the fabric of her songs. Her music is unique, contagious, warm and engaging. Her voice captures both a wild innocence and age-old wisdom. Her melodies are strong, her harmonies and rhythms are solid and bold. "It's great to see Tara use the West African Djembe drum as a lead instrument, and have it work so well in the context of her great song writing." - Jonathan Shulm, Rhythm Magazine.

Jane Fallon: Take a cattle rancher's daughter from the West Coast, add university degrees in literature and music, transplant her to New England and you'll end up with a singer/songwriter with a unique musical voice. Her original songs cover a wide variety of topics with a contemporary flair that incorporates those influences of folk, pop, swing and country. One of the "special artists whose music cannot be categorized . . . each song is beautifully crafted . . . [her] voice is lovely and soothing, [leaving you] breathless." Nicky Baldrian Internet Review. Fallon teaches English at Southern New Hampshire University.

Indiegrrl Showcase II Lunchtime Concert

Thea Hopkins: An emerging presence on the national folk stage, Hopkins has been called "one of the most poetic, literate and powerfully moving of the new singer/songwriters to emerge on the scene in the last few years." Her ". . . gorgeous dusky voice wraps itself like mist around country-folk songs of tenderness and substance." -- The Boston Herald. She has opened for Maura O'Connell, Connie Kaldor, Tracy Grammer, Brooks Williams, The Burns Sisters, Rod MacDonald, Harvey Reid, John Hammond and Ellis Paul.

Susan Levine: An Emerging Artist at the 2002 Falcon Ridge Folk Festival and finalist in several national songwriting competitions, "Susan is a literate and intelligent lyricist whose songs are laced with evocative images [. She] has a flowing and expressive voice, powerful yet capable of wrapping you up with warmth and tenderness." - Richard Fox, WCUW, 91.3 FM, Worcester. "Not only does this woman sing brilliantly and perform powerfully, her songs speak to and stay with her listeners." - Esther Friedman, WUMB Folkwaves Magazine.

Kate Klim: Klim's folk/pop style is making a name for her in the Boston music community. "Her angelic voice harnesses purity. Delicate, flowing and lush, it portrays an incisive, emotional honesty." Sirensong.com. She has appeared in the Club Passim "New Faces" show, opened for folk icon Mary McAslin and performed as an invited guest of the Pushstars. "A poignant songstress . . . and just when Klim cajoles listeners with her crippling fragility, she is able to shatter it, sweep the pieces under her piano bench, and crown it with a rascally wink." - Aaron Jenkins, The Mercury.

Mary Lou Ferrante: Not a songwriter and not an official Indiegrrl, Ferrante is a special invited guest. An accomplished blues guitarist and singer, Ferrante plays traditional blues in the vein of Robert Johnson and Blind Boy Fuller. What attracts her to country blues is the raw emotive truth expressed through songs with intricate beats and sounds. Her sweet delta blues guitar and sultry, passionate voice will win you over. "Marylou has the soul of a blues player." -- Robert Jones. She has performed at venues throughout New England, including Club Passim, Tupelo Music Hall and Amazing Things Arts Center (opening for Guy Davis).

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Women's History Resources
 

At-a-Glance Calendar (PDF)

Recommended Reading (PDF)