June 2019
Introducing the Program Leadership Team
Story by Karin Evans

As Ashby Village approaches its 10th anniversary, there is a lot going on—and much has changed. As an all-volunteer organization with a very small staff, Ashby Village has had to reimagine itself a number of times. How do we get everything done? How do we give members what they want and need? How do we make sure our programs are working? How do we keep everyone informed?

For the first several years, in order to keep everything running, the original Ashby Village Board of Directors was a working board that did almost everything—from raising money to developing new programs, to managing all that was going on. In 2013, to better serve everyone, the leadership structure was changed and streamlined. The Board turned into a policy-making board, and the Program Leadership Team (PLT) was formed to oversee all programs and services.
Montage by Cliff Gaines
Top: Irene Marcos, Emily Sexton, Sigrid Duesberg, Holly Brownscombe
Bottom: Joan Straumanis, Mary Jo Powell, Roberta Pressman, Joan Cole
Over time, the Ashby Village Board and the Program Leadership Team have collaborated on ways to better serve members. There’s been more and more to consider. During the past few years numerous new programs and services have been launched—from the Decluttering Team to the Caring and Connection Team.  To keep relationships close as the village has grown, and to help members know what’s going on, Board members began attending neighborhood meetings and happy hours, and the newsletter began to highlight different teams and their activities.  

Currently, says Joan Cole, who serves as liaison between the Ashby Village Board of Directors and the Program Leadership Team, there’s a focus not only on generating new programs, but on evaluating programs, making sure there’s communication and coordination between programs, and putting plans and training in place for leadership development and succession. Especially in an organization of older members, it’s important to avoid burnout and to identify new people to take on key roles.  

In October there will be an all-members Community Forum, hosted by the PLT, to hear from members about what they need and want, to generate new ideas, to talk about what’s working and what isn’t, and to plan the village’s next steps as we move into the second decade.  Executive Director Andy Gaines says, “This coming year, our ten year anniversary, will be an exciting time to step back, take stock, and celebrate how far we’ve come.”  “The focus of this anniversary will be on working toward inclusion of the whole community,” adds Joan Cole, “and getting everyone involved in forging the next steps for the village.”  More information on the tenth anniversary and the fall Community Forum will be coming. Stay tuned!  
Upcoming Events
A conversation with Betty Reid Soskin
Sunday, June 30, 2:00-4:00 pm
Epworth United Methodist Church
1953 Hopkins St, Berkeley, 

Betty Reid Soskin grew up in a Cajun/Creole African-American family that settled in the East Bay after the historic floods that devastated the City of New Orleans in 1927. Her parents joined her maternal grandfather, George Allen, who had resettled in Oakland at the end of World War I. The Allen family followed the pattern set by the black railroad workers who discovered the West Coast while serving as sleeping car porters, waiters, and chefs for Southern Pacific and Santa Fe railroads – settling their families at the western end of their run where life might be less impacted by southern hostility.   

Betty worked in a segregated union hall, Boilermaker’s A-36, during World War II as a file clerk. In 1945 she and her young husband, Mel Reid, founded a much-loved Berkeley music store -- Reid’s Records.   

Betty has since held positions as staff to a Berkeley city council member and as a field representative serving West Contra Costa County for two members of the California State Assembly; former Assemblywoman Dion Aroner and Senator Loni Hancock. Betty was instrumental in the establishment of the Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park in 2000.  

The event is open to all.
Pre-Happy Hour event
Twenty Years Of Bringing Women's History Documents From Archives To Online
Friday, June 7, 3:00-4:00 pm
Ashby Village 1821 Catalina Avenue, Berkeley

Kitty Sklar and Tom Dublin will speak about their work during the past twenty years of creating three online databases in Women's History, collectively comprising over 400,000 pages of primary sources. 
Tom Dublin will speak about creating "The Online Biographical Dictionary of the Women's Suffrage Movement in the United States, 1830 to 1960," which will be complete in 2020 to celebrate the centennial of the adoption of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  
Living Room Chats
Sunday, June 9 , 2:00-4:00 pm
Oakland RSVP for location
Invite a friend to join our Living Room Chat! They'll have the opportunity to hear what Ashby Village offers to our members and volunteers, how it enhances their quality of life, and why it helps them develop peace of mind about the future.
Sunday, June 23, 2:00-4:00 pm
Richmond RSVP for location
Science & Ideas Forum
Plants, Bugs, and Molecules: The Chemistry of Plants and Insects with Greti Séquin
Wednesday, June 12, 3 - 5:00 PM Ashby Village Office 1821 Catalina Avenue, Berkeley

Greti Séquin will introduce the subject of her recent book, The Chemistry of Plants and Insects: Plants, Bugs, and Molecules. With her enthusiastic and accessible way of connecting chemistry with plants and insects, she presents organic compounds in a motivating, understandable context that captures the interest of people who would like a deeper understanding of the natural world. Her presentation and book are aimed at non-chemists who enjoy observing plants and insects during walks in the outdoors or while visiting botanical gardens and other nature areas.
Saturday, June 15
2:00-4:00 PM
on this celebration of you!
Upcoming Hearts N' Hands Events
Gardening Project
Wednesday June 20, 2019

For this event, the project will include weeding in the back yard. 

Come and join us! Light lunch provided. RSVP
The Hearts N' Hands program provides volunteer assistance to Ashby Village Members when they need a hand
Volunteers gather for a half day to complete multiple
jobs at once. 
Hearts N' Hands Thank You!
"Hearts N' Hands team did an amazing job cleaning my many windows. And never resting until lunch...wow! We’re so appreciative!"
~Members, Joan and Alec Blair

"It was fun having you all here and getting to know you...windows look sensational." ~Member, Sarah Smith
Erik Whitaker Joins Ashby Village as Program Manager
Story by Charli Depner 

Erik Whitaker’s new role as Ashby Village Program Manager builds on a career establishing and managing programs dedicated to the well-being and engagement of people in the second half of adulthood. He says that his “everyday goal” is enhancing the quality of life for adults as they age.  

The Program Manager is responsible for member support services (e.g., prevention and early intervention, assessment, and referral of members to appropriate clinical and social services) as well as for an array of member engagement activities that support member needs, interests, and social activities. With a long history of volunteer experience himself, Erik is excited to start working with Ashby Villages’ stellar corps of volunteers.

Read the full story on Ashby Village website
WANTED: Your Speaker and Performance Recommendations!
Some of Ashby Village's most successful events have come to the us by way of member and volunteer recommendations and offers - in other words, they came from you!

Are you interested in sharing your subject matter expertise, or artistic and musical talents, or do you know someone who may be willing to share theirs?

Contact Sigrid, our Volunteer Events Coordinator, with the info!
Plan Ahead to Submit Articles to This Newsletter
Would you like your event or notice to appear in the Village Voices Newsletter? Use this simple form to submit your material. 

It takes us time to prepare each issue! Remember that the DEADLINE for each newsletter is the 15th of the previous month. Late submissions are not guaranteed placement in the next newsletter.
Tech Tips
Would you like personal assistance from Technology & Electronics Volunteers?

Volunteers can help you with a wide range of devices!

Do you want to learn how to get more out of your smart phone or tablet? Call us!

Not sure how to get your TV hooked up? Call us!

Interested in finally getting your printer to work? Call us!

Are you ready to learn how to use Skype or FaceTime to have video calls with friends and family? Call us!

Have you had enough of that weird thing that keeps happening with your computer? Call us!

To request service, please email info@ashbyvillage.org or call 510-204-9200.

Click here to find technology resources on Ashby Village website.
Neighborhood Groups &
Ongoing Activities
Monday, June 3, 10:00 - 11:00 am, Monday Morning by the Bay - César Chávez Park (every Monday). Contact Claire Heinzelman 650-619-4016 

Tuesday, June 4, 2:00-4:00 pm, Thousand Oaks-Hamlet Mac User Group (accessible). Contact Ken nakayama@g.harvard.edu

Wednesday, June 5, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, Emery Bunch Mah-Jongg. Watergate Condominium, Emeryville. Contact Jean Goldman 510-207-6600

Sunday, June 9, 2:00 - 4:00 pm, Clarewood Documentary Viewing:Free to Rock. Home of Mary G. Contact mmarigold100@aol.com

Monday, June 10, 3:30 - 4:30 pm, Outlandish Android Group. Contact Alison

Tuesday, June 11, 2:00 - 4:30 pm, Bridge Group. Contact Mary Jo 510-525-0545 or Betty 510-524-8260 

Wednesday, June 19, 3:30 - 5:00 pm, Hearing impaired support group at Ashby Village. RSVP info@ashbyvillage.org or call 510-204-9200.

Tuesday, June 25, 12:30 - 2:30 pm, Emery Bunch lunch: Paisan. Contact Frank Lewis flewis@usc.edu

Monday, June 24, 4:30 pm, Midlandish Tea. Home of Wanda Nusted. Call 510-527-5931. 

Sunday, June 23, 2:00 - 4:00 pm, Thousand Oaks Hamlet Meeting & Social Time. Carol's home, contact 510-527-1926

Wednesday, June 26, 1:00 - 3:30 pm, Shakespeare Reading group at Ashby Village. Contact Don Hubbard wdh1935@gmail.com

Saturday, June 29, 8:00 - 10:00 am, Tilden Seasonal Bird Walk. Contact Celeste Burrows celesteburrows@sbcglobal.net or 510-601-1211, or Eric Schroeder ejschroeder@ucdavis.edu or 510-301-2618

Check out our online calendar for the full view of our upcoming meetings, activities and other events.
Reflections on Past Events
Video recording of the latest Arts&Culture event
Did you miss the talk by Dr. Harry Edwards on April 7 on the topic of "sports as an instrument of social change"?

You can watch the recording here

Cannabis and pain management by Dr. Laurie Vollen
Story by Bob Waxmann
Cannabis seems to be everywhere, at least in California and every other state where its been legalized. But questions persist. 

Is it really safe? Does it actually have medical uses? And what kind and what amount is most effective? 

On Wednesday, April 17 Dr. Laurie Vollen, MD, MPH (physician, Master of Public Health) and expert on the use of Cannabis for the treatment of pain answered these questions and more for Ashby Village Members, Volunteers and Guests.

Using her Public Health expertise, Dr. Vollen started comparing cannabis treatment for pain with traditional pharmaceutical options, discovering that Cannabis has one of the best safety records of any treatment, even better than caffeine. Dr. Vollen concluded that cannabis is a reasonable alternative to pharmaceuticals for the treatment of mild to moderate pain. Now, Dr. Vollen in her practice exclusively prescribes Cannabis exclusively for a multitude of symptoms, including pain. 
Pre-Happy Hour Event: a talk by Peggy Reskin
Photos by Nancy Rubin
"Where were you in 1964?" was the way that Peggy Reskin (on the right in the photo) opened her illuminating talk about her book BAREFOOT FRONTRUNNERS: Sex, Women and Power.
It was fascinating to hear the diverse responses from the 20 or so people (mostly female) who attended the discussion. The personal stories that were shared, along with Reskin's remembrances, research, and insight, made the 60's and 70s come alive again."
Ashby Village Nature Walks in April
Story by Audre Newman
Nature was very kind to us Nature Walkers in April! We had wonderful weather for the most part, plenty of camaraderie and good times, beautiful views, and the best part, spring flowers.

The Walks on Tilden’s Seaview trail and the Quarry Trail got us to many patches of wildflowers and a stunning flash of a Western bluebird.
The ride took only 20 minutes. We caught a PresidiGo (free shuttle) from a street corner near the Embarcadero Ferry Building, and a short and fascinating ride later we were at the Presidio Visitor’s Center.

Participants: Chris, Judy, Andreé, Audre, Roger, Shirley and Celeste.
After a picnic lunch on the Lawn overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge, some of us went to see the photo exhibit “Then They Came For Me: Incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II and the Demise of Civil Liberties” featuring works by photographers Dorothea Lang and Ansel Adams, alongside works by incarcerated Japanese American artists Toyo Miyatake and Miné Okubo.
The return trip by shuttle and ferry got us back to Jack London Square in Oakland by 4pm. The whole trip was very relaxed, yet varied in all aspects. Thanks to Celeste and Shirley for their meticulous planning.
Bulletin Board
Berkeley Police: An Oakland man who worked for an authorized Verizon dealer in North Berkeley has been charged with a dozen felonies after using the credit card numbers of elderly customers to rack up thousands of dollars in fraudulent fees, according to court papers.

Thank you to the Ashby Village volunteers who contributed to this issue of the Village Voices newsletter.
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