In Memoriam: Shirlee Madow

In Memoriam: Shirlee Madow


We note with sorrow the passing on December 1 of a special CVEC member, Shirlee Madow, of Faribault. Shirlee was recognized at the annual membership meeting last May as the student who took the most courses (52) over the past 10 years—and now digging farther back to our 1997 beginning, we find a grand total of 73, far surpassing anyone else’s. Clearly the Elder Collegium was an important part of the last fifteen years of her life. She also served on the Board as our “Faribault representative” between 2008 and 2011. We will miss her presence.


In Memoriam: Dick Cantwell

In Memoriam: Dick Cantwell


It is with sadness that we note the loss of one of our most valued instructors of recent years. Dick Cantwell died on September 7 after a period of declining health. He taught eight courses for us from 1998 to 2011, most involving his great love of opera. He was the featured speaker at the 2008 annual membership meeting, when he told us about “The Greatest Lied (Song) in the World.” His illness and passing have left a large hole in our curriculum, and much sorrow in our hearts.

Third Annual Northfield Film Festival


July 8, 15, 22, and 29  are  now traditional dates for the Northfield Film Festival.    This year’s theme is The Hollywood Renaissance, featuring very popular films of the 1960’s and 1970’s.   Some important bullet points:

  • Each weekly film will again be screened at the Weitz Center Cinema,  at Union and Third Streets,  on Tuesdays in July,  at 7:30 PM.
  • You may wish to come a little early:   the audiences last year were large.
  • An added feature this year will be three short films created by Northfield students—-one each from St. Olaf,  Carleton,  and Northfield High school.   These students,  in order,  are Horacio Lopez,  Diana Fraser,  and the team of Sarah Goldfeather and Athena Currier.


  • Bonnie and Clyde  is the first film,  on July 8.   As in the past,  seminars will be conducted on the mornings following the films,  in room 104 of Carleton’s Language and Dining Center,  9:30-11:30 AM, and will require registration (form available online or at the Senior Center) and a fee of $25 for the four seminars.    The first seminar will be given by Jay Beck.
  • The Graduate  is the second film,  on July 15.   The seminar on July 16 will be led by Eric Nelson.
  • 2001:  A Space Odyssey  is the third film,  on July 22.  The seminar on July 23 will be led by Charlie Black.
  • Chinatown  is the last film,  on July 29.   Carol Donelan will lead the seminar on July 30.


Horacio Lopez

Horacio Lopez

Sarah Goldfeather

Sarah Goldfeather



Diana Fraser

Diana Fraser

Since this year’s film festival will highlight the impact of young directors and screenwriters on movies of the sixties and seventies, we are also featuring short films by innovative filmmakers at St Olaf, Carleton and Northfield High School. Each of these five-minute movies will precede the main feature of the evening. The Nerd (2005)will open the series on July 15th. Written and directed by Sarah Goldfeather and Athena Currier of Northfield, it is a gently humorous portrayal of the social challenges of high school. Selected for the Walker Art Center’s “Girls in the Director’s Chair” series, the film brings to mind the early comedies of Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton.


Oh, Glory, by Horatio Lopez, a graduating senior from St Olaf , will be shown July 22nd. Horatio, born in the South Side of Chicago, has a strong interest in the intersection of racism and foreign policy. His self-declared ambition is to “challenge society in a creative manner …and to keep creating until my brain goes dull and I become a college professor.”

Diana Fraser is a 2014 graduate of Carleton’s Cinema and Media Studies program. In her senior comps she explored recent romantic comedies that feature darker themes such as divorce, adultery, mental illness and addiction. Her short film The Little Things, shown on July 29th, explores the relationship between two college sweethearts that emerges after their conventional “happy ending.”

Please join us whenever you can for this enjoyable series.


Film Festival 7-17

Ian Barbour Panel at Carleton

We are pleased to forward this invitation from Carleton College.    Ed

April 30, 2014

Dear Mr. Noer,

On behalf of the Carleton College Religion Department, I would like to share with you some information about a special event to honor the legacy of Ian Barbour. On Wednesday, May 14,

a panel discussion on “Ian Barbour and the Future of Religion and Science” will be held at    7:30 p.m. in the Weitz Center Cinema.

Since many Northfield residents took Ian’s classes at the Elder Collegium, we wanted to extend a special invitation to those who are active in the collegium and at the senior center. Five renowned theologians, who were also friends and colleagues of Ian, will speak on topics related to issues that were central to Ian’s work: evolution, faith, environmental theology, technology and ethics:

Philip Clayton, Claremont School of Theology (theology, pluralism, and cosmology)          Celia Deane-Drummond, University of Notre Dame (humans and evolution)Nancy Howell, St. Paul School of Theology (ecofeminism)Ted Peters, Graduate Theological Union (ethics and stem cell research)Bob Russell, Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences (religion and science)

We would be delighted if participants in the Elder Collegium were interested in attending this event, and we would be most grateful if you would be willing to share this information with them, by posting the enclosed flyer and, if possible, by putting a blurb in your newsletter or on your webpage. I have attached some suggested language for a possible announcement or blurb.

We hope to see you and/or any members of your community on May 14!


Lori Pearson, Professor and Chair, Carleton Religion Department



Annual Meeting A Friendly End of Academic Year

ShirlOnce again,  the annual meeting of CVEC was a pleasant elixir of business and pleasure.    The emphasis this time,  on Sunday, May 3,  again at St. John’s Lutheran Church,  was on the students who had taken the most courses since the Fall of 2004,  headed by this lady, Shirlee Maddow of Faribault:    It will be some time before anyone surpasses her record of 52 classes!






President ReJean Schulte went on to recognize 9 others who had taken 30 or more classes   and 45 who had taken 20-29 classes.     She was justifiably proud of them all.rj











Joan Kark, one of the over-30-courses students,    then described her own long-term involvement with CVEC.    She highlighted the close connection between CVEC and her alma mater,  St. Olaf College,  the cjoanhance to meet so many people with similar passion for lifelong learning,  and the broadening of her horizons.






She was followed by Richard Schulte,  who gave us some witty recollections of his life in South Dakota, including this amazing scene of a dog who reportedly could climb trees in pursuit of squirrels  (!!)





Our last featured speaker was Pat Surrat,  being introduced here by President ReJean.     Pat








Next on the agenda was the recognition by Executive Director Rich Noer of retiring board members,  Diane Hagen,  Bruce Roberts,  and Jon Rondestvedt.  Also he recognized Jim Holden and Walt Stromseth for having taught at least 5 courses.

Jim HWalt

Jim, by the way,  chairs the Nominations Committee,  and he introduced 5 new board members for a 3 year term,   in this order:   Randy Cox,  Joan Drenth, Phil Eaves,  Judy Mason,  and Dale Talley.

Randy Joan Drenth Phil Judy Dale Talley





The meeting concluded with staff reports by Finance Director,  Barb Jenkins, Operations director,  Dale Sommers,  Curriculum Director,  Ed Langerak,  and the Director of our Summer Film Festival,  Eric Nelson.   You will be hearing full details about each of these projects in the near future.      Ed