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Asilomar 2009 “Change In American Life: Past, Present, And Future”

Phi Beta Kappa Northern California Association 23nd Asilomar Conference,
February 13-16, 2009

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Ninety-seven Phi Betes and their guests attended our 23rd annual conference at Asilomar in Pacific Grove over President’s Day Weekend, February 13-16. Stimulating lectures and discussions alternated with relaxing time to renew old friendships and make new acquaintances.

Our speakers presented various views on “Changes in American Life: Past, Present, and Future.”

Friday night Mr. Peter Hannaford spoke on “Presidential Leadership and the Nature of Change,” followed by a lively discussion led by some of our physicist members who commented on Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative.


Saturday Dr. LeAnn Flesher spoke on the influence of premillennial dispensationalism and the Left Behind fiction series that cobbles together biblical references out of context and interprets apocalyptic literature as prophecy.

Saturday night Dr. Ellen Hanak excited the group when she addressed the future of water in California and rehearsed the pros and cons of a peripheral canal.


On Sunday we heard about ergonomics helping workers and saving Intel thousands of dollars in workers' compensation insurance costs from Mr. Earnest Ray.

In the afternoon Miss Julia Morgan (aka Betty Marvin) made an appearance across space and time to tell us about her life and how she became California’s first woman architect.

Jonathan O’Bergin, owner of Gryphon winery in Carmel Valley, joined us for a delightful wine seminar and tasting of his Chardonnay, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, and Pinot Noir.

That night Ms. Sharon Burke arrived from Washington to tell us about Obama’s proposals for changes in the nation’s approach to national security. Interview with Sharon Burke on "PRI's The World"

On Monday morning Dr. Sara Gilliland explained how new discoveries in neuroanatomy are helping physical therapists improve the quality of life of their clients.

After three years as Asilomar chair, Jae Emenhiser is passing the torch to Calvin Wood. You may contact him by email to reserve your space for the 24th annual conference, February 12-15, 2010.

Hope to see you in 2010,

Jae Emenhiser, Past Asilomar Chair

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