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Mary Tefft White Cultural Center

In Fall 2004, Mary Tefft (Happy) White provided Roger Williams University with a generous gift to launch the annual program, Mary Tefft White Lecture Series.  The following lectures are free and open to the public.

Under this year's theme, Talking in the Library, the speakers offer compelling personal stories of unique calls to service to the community through their individual creative contributions.  


Fall 2014 Lecture Series


Padma Venkatraman - Writing for Young Adults: From Oceanographer to Young Adults Author

October 7, 2014
4:30 p.m.
The author of the acclaimed young adult novels Climbing the Stairs, A Time to Dance, and Island’s End. As a young child she developed a keen interest in Mathematics, Sciences and Literature. As a result of the tugof- war between her passion for the world of numbers and her passion for the world of words, she moved to the United States from India at the age of nineteen to pursue a graduate degree in oceanography. Currently she teaches at URI.

Adam Braver - Lincoln in Fiction

October 28, 2014
4:30 p.m.

Adam Braver is the author of five novels, most recently Misfit, a novel about the life of Marilyn Monroe.  His books have been selected for the Barnes and Noble Discover New Writers program, Borders' Original Voices series, the IndieNext list, and twice for the Book Sense list, as well as having been translated into multiple languages.  At Roger Williams University, he is on faculty in the Creative Writing program, and Writer-in-Residence with the University Library.


Taylor Polites & Jeffrey Meriwether -  From the Stacks to the Pages: How Research Tells the Stories from History

November 18, 2014
4:30 p.m.
Taylor M. Polites is the author of The Rebel Wife (Simon & Schuster, 2012). His work has appeared in the anthologies Knitting Yarns: Writers on Knitting (W.W. Norton, November 2013) and the upcoming Providence Noir (Akashic Books) as well as in local and regional arts and news publications including Provincetown Arts, artscope, and the Cape Codder. He teaches in the Wilkes University Creative Writing MFA program, at Roger Williams University and the Rhode Island School of Design. He lives in Providence, Rhode Island with his small Chihuahua Clovis.

Jeffrey Meriwether is an Associate Professor of History at RWU. A U.S. Navy Reservist when he began his career at Roger Williams in 2001, Meriwether’s zeal for all things historic has only grown since he arrived in New England. In 2003, Meriwether took full advantage of the region’s colonial roots by signing on as a Revolutionary War re-enactor with His Majesty’s Tenth Regiment of Foot, one of several British regiments stationed in the Boston area during the Revolution.


All lectures will be held in the Mary Tefft White Cultural Center, University Library