The LSCF is proud to sponsor the Levy Lecture Series, an educational program for residents 55+ years who are passionate about learning. Additional support is provided by Avidor Evanston. The series is free, but registration is required.

Lectures through March will be presented on Zoom. Register and you will be receive an email with easy-to-follow steps. Need more help? Watch this video.

Virtual lectures continue weekly through March. Stay tuned for full spring schedule.


Tuesday, March 2 at 1pm

Golem Girl

Riva Lehrer: author

Presented via Zoom. 

Riva Lehrer is an artist, writer, and curator whose work focuses on issues of physical identity and the socially challenged body. She is best known for representations of people with impairments, and those whose sexuality or gender identity have long been stigmatized. A longtime faculty member of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Riva Lehrer is currently an instructor in medical humanities at Northwestern University.

Tuesday, March 9 at 1pm

Tales of Old Chicago

Rich Lindberg: author, journalist

Presented via Zoom. 

Richard C. Lindberg is an award-winning author, journalist, and lecturer who has written nineteen other books about Chicago history, politics, criminal justice, sports, and ethnicity. The 2011 memoir of his Northwest Side boyhood, Whiskey Breakfast: My Swedish Family, My American Life, was named nonfiction book of the year by the Chicago Writer’s Association.

Tuesday, March 16 at 1pm

Find the Helpers

Fred Guttenberg: author

Presented via Zoom. 

Find the Helpers tells of Fred Guttenberg’s journey since the loss of his brother Michael, a first responder on 9/11 who passed away from cancer related to his service, and the murder of his daughter Jaime, one of the innocent victims of the Parkland school shooting. As someone who has been directly affected by two distinct American tragedies, he shares how he has been able to get through the worst of times thanks to the kindness and compassion of others.

Fred and his wife Jennifer now spend time challenging our elected officials to do more. They began a nonprofit organization dedicated to Jaime’s life called “Orange Ribbons for Jaime.” He has been a regular on TV news programs and a myriad of online and print media. Through the formation of the non-profit, this is now his full-time mission.

Tuesday, March 23 at 1pm

From Skunkweed to Skyscrapers: The Emergence and Evolvement of Blues Culture in America

Fruteland Jackson: author, musician, storyteller, oral historian

Presented via Zoom. 

Fruteland Jackson is an author, musician, storyteller, oral historian, and entertainer who grew up in Chicago. He is a five-time Blues Music Award Nominee and a recipient of the Blues Foundation’s Keeping the Blues Alive Award. Fruteland performs Americana, acoustic blues, folk, traditional, and singer-songwriter styles around the world. He also created the award winning All About the Blues Series as part of the Blues in the Schools programs and works to bring more music education to public schools.

Tuesday, March 30 at 1pm

The Cutting Room Floor: Adventures in Filming My Rock and Roll Heroes

John Anderson: filmmaker, producer, musician

Presented via Zoom. 

John Anderson is Emmy-winning director, producer and editor. In 2006 he was nominated for a Grammy for his direction of “Brian Wilson Presents SMiLE,” a live performance DVD and fourth collaboration with the Beach Boys leader. Other directorial projects include "Born In Chicago," a documentary on the Chicago blues; "Sam Lay in Bluesland," a documentary about the legendary blues drummer; and "Horn From The Heart: The Paul Butterfield Story," a documentary about the Chicago bluesman.

Tuesday, April 6 at 1pm

We Crossed a Bridge and it Trembled: Voices from Syria

Wendy Pearlman: author, professor

Presented via Zoom. 

Northwestern University Professor Wendy Pearlman will present her acclaimed book, "We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled: Voices from Syria," based on interviews that she has conducted with more than 450 displaced Syrians across the globe since 2012. Called essential reading by the New York Times, and using exclusively Syrians’ own words, the book is a mosaic of stories and reflections that express the human dimension of the Syrian uprising, war, and refugee experience. Her talk will use the stories of ordinary people to chronicle the origins and evolution of the Syrian conflict, examine the status of the conflict today, and identify key issues for stages to come.

Tuesday, April 13 at 1pm

Sheila Arnold as Daisy Bates, Civil Rights Activist and Arkansas NAACP President

Sheila Arnold: teaching artist

Presented via Zoom. 

Daisy Bates was the backbone of the Little Rock Nine. In this moving historical representation, Sheila Arnold tells the story of the woman determined to help integrate the Little Rock, Arkansas schools as well as overcome the severe opposition she and the students were subjected to daily. Daisy talks about her life before becoming NAACP president, atrocities she has seen committed, her relationship with Thurgood Marshall, and the infamous academic year, 1957-1958, when Central High School in Little Rock was to be integrated and the Federal Troops were called in by President Eisenhower. You will not forget meeting this strong, determined woman once you've heard her stories.

Tuesday, April 20 at 1pm

The Watergate Girl

Jill Wine-Banks: author, attorney, legal analyst

Presented via Zoom. 

In "The Watergate Girl," Jill Wine-Banks takes us inside this troubled time in American history, and it is impossible to read about the crimes of Richard Nixon and the people around him without drawing parallels to today’s headlines. The book is also the story of a young woman who sought to make her professional mark while trapped in a failing marriage, buffeted by sexist preconceptions, and harboring secrets of her own. Her house was burgled, her phones were tapped, and even her office garbage was rifled through.

At once a cautionary tale and an inspiration for those who believe in the power of justice and the rule of law, "The Watergate Girl" is a revelation about our country, our politics, and who we are as a society.

Tuesday, April 27 at 1pm

The Sanford Underground Research Facility: Exploring the Unseen

Deb Wolf: education, PR, and IDEA director, Sanford Lab

Presented via Zoom. 

As the Education and Public Relations director at the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in Lead, SD, Deb Wolf knows for a fact that she has the most amazing job. In guiding the Education and Communications teams, they work to translate the world-leading physics research into learning opportunities for K-12 students, teachers, and the public. One of her passions is to support teachers as they develop leadership skills to advocate for high quality science learning opportunities for all students in South Dakota. She also knows that to answer some of the world’s most challenging questions, we need a diverse, inclusive, and welcoming culture. As the project manager for their IDEA work (inclusion, diversity, equity, and access), that is what SURF foregrounds each day.

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Recent Lectures

Bette Davis: A Living History

Leslie Goddard | Historian, Actress

The Asian Lunar New Year

Yvonne Wolf | Cultural Educator 


Meet Emily Dickinson

Paddy Lynn | Actress, Storyteller


Ensemble: An Oral History of Chicago Theater

Mark Larson | Educator, Author

Boots in the Ashes

Cynthia Beebe | Former AFT agent


The Speckled Band

Megan Wells | Actress, storyteller

The Roving Red Planet

Michelle Nichols | Director of Public Observing, Adler Planetarium


The Firsts

Jennifer Steinhauer | New York Times reporter, author

Ode to Beethoven: The Man Behind the Music

Anette Isaacs | German Historian


Our Power as Playwrights

Gloria Bond Clunie | Playwright

Redlined: A Memoir of Race, Change, and Fractured Community in 1960s Chicago

Linda Gartz

Science and the Societal Impact of Hearing Loss

Sumit Dhar, Doctor of Audiology, Northwestern University

From Evanston to Uganda: DeliveringHealth Care to the Developing World

Ken Schaefle, M.D.

The State of Hate in America

Lecia Brooks, Chief of Staff, Southern Poverty Law Center

Emmet Till 65 Years Later: Looking Back and Looking Forward

Chris Benson | Journalist, Lawyer, associate professor, Medill, Northwestern