Circle of Friends Annual Meeting 6.15.2022

Circle of Friends, the community support arm for the NSU Alvin Sherman Library held its Annual Meeting on Wednesday, June 15, 2022. Included was the recognition of 4 long time Board Members who, because of their significant contribution to the Circle of Friends over the years have been invited to stay on in an advisory capacity as Emeritus Board Members. The Report of the Nominating Committee also included the Announcement of Officers and Members of the Board for the 2022-2023 fiscal year and Circle of Friends’ accomplishments this past year. Keynote Speaker was Mystery Writer Elaine Viets, whose wit and humor kept the crowd laughing with her anecdotes. Elaine is so devoted to her craft that she does intensive work for each book, everything from taking on a multitude of jobs to autopsy research for forensic mysteries.

As of May 31st of this year, Circle of Friends has 119 memberships, compared to 113 memberships for the prior year at this time. We gained 4 new Board Members during the past year.

Emeritus Board Members honored:

Rona Levitt, past Secretary, long time member of the Circle of Friends and LifeLong Learning Institute and a wonderful ambassador for the Library and Circle of Friends and has recruited not only several new members over the years but also past and current Board Members.

Ann Porterfield, also a past Secretary, is a major supporter of the Library and NSU over the many years, whose generosity knows no bounds, between the Ann and Bill Porterfield Study Room, the Digital Media Lab, the Maker Space, support for the NSU Oceanographic Center Library and so much more!

Janet Speth, Past Program Chair, long time Library supporter never stops recruiting friends and neighbors for membership, events, group Library tours, and even Library cards on her own and together with her husband Dr. Robert Speth of NSU.

Ronnie Oller, former CoF President, longtime supporter of the Library and University, and along with her husband Dr. Robert Oller of NSU, she is co-founder of A Day For Children.

FY 2021-2022 Circle of Friends Funded Projects / Events:

· 3 year Strategic plan with Library Strategies for both the Library and CoF are in progress.

· 20th Anniversary of the NSU ASL- reception catering supported

· Support for the Pen To Purpose 4 part Author Series in collaboration with Dr. Efrat Friedman, a Creative Writing Professor of the Halmos College of Arts & Sciences

· Support for Starmark for content and creation of marketing plan

man speaks at podium
im Hutchens, Vice President for Information Services and University Librarian, University Libraries welcomes the guests.
photo of people seated at a lecture
Presentation by author Elaine Viets
Two people standing together
Circle of Friends Board Member Dr. Douglas Ford with Elaine Viets and her recently published book, Life Without Parole
smiling woman
Author Elaine Viets
4 people pose for a photo
Chuck Morton, President of the Circle of Friends, with Emeritus Board Members Janet Speth, Rona Levitt, and Ann Porterfield. Not pictured: Ronnie Oller

Pen to Purpose; Cultivating Writing as a Brand of Professionalism with Malcolm Mitchell

On Monday, April 11, 2022, at the NSU Alvin Sherman Library’s Cotilla Gallery on the 2nd Floor, this semester’s final discussion in the Pen to Purpose series was held featuring author Malcolm Mitchell.  This author series, founded by Professor Efrat Friedman, is the result of a collaboration between the NSU Department of Communication, Media, and the Arts and the Alvin Sherman Library, sponsored by the Circle of Friends.

Malcolm Mitchell was the former Wide Receiver for the New England Patriots, and the rookie who helped the Patriots win Super Bowl LI. For years, Mitchell’s life revolved around his athletic pursuits, and he devoted little attention to books or writing. His focus, however, changed while recovering from knee

Event poster surgeries when Mitchell made time to pursue higher literacy levels and joined a book club. He eventually created the “Share the Magic Foundation” to promote literacy to children from disadvantaged backgrounds, and “Read with Malcolm,” which introduces book ownership to students, and works to improve literacy in schools.

Mitchell is the author of the children’s books, The Magician’s Hat and My Very Favorite Book in the Whole Wide World which encourage a positive association with literacy and the idea that books promote growth and opportunity.

NSU Library’s Circle of Friends is the community support arm for Alvin Sherman Library. The funds raised are used to enhance the library’s services, materials, and programs. For more information about Circle of Friends, please call 954-262-4593, email or visit   To become a member or renew, please click here.

Pen to Purpose: Cultivating Writing as a Brand of Professionalism with Jean Hanff Korelitz

On March 29, 2022, the third discussion in the Pen to Purpose series was held; a collaboration between the NSU Department of Communication, Media, and the Arts and the Alvin Sherman Library sponsored by the Circle of Friends,. This event features New York Times bestselling author Jean Hanff Korelitz in conversation with NSU Professor Efrat Friedman. The writer of several novels, including The Plot (adaptation forthcoming from Hulu, to star Mahershala Ali)Event poster and You Should Have Known (adapted for HBO as “The Undoing” by David E. Kelley and starring Nicole Kidman and Hugh Grant), her most recent novel, The Latecomer to be released in May 2022 (television adaptation already in development).
Jacob Finch Bonner was once a promising young novelist with a respectably published first book. Today, he’s a dried up author, teaching in a third-rate MFA program and struggling to maintain what’s left of his dignity; he hasn’t written–let alone published–anything decent in years. When an arrogant student, Evan Parker, announces he doesn’t need any help because the plot of his prospective book is a sure thing, Jake is prepared to dismiss the boast as typical amateur narcissism. But then . . . he hears The Plot.

If you missed it, view the recording. Learn more about the author here.
NSU Library’s Circle of Friends is the community support arm for Alvin Sherman Library. The funds raised are used to enhance the library’s services, materials, and programs. With more Friends, we can make an even greater impact. For more information about Circle of Friends, please call 954-262-4593, email or visit To become a member or renew, please click here.

Pen to Purpose: Cultivating Writing as a Brand of Professionalism with David Weill, MD

On Wednesday, February 23, 2022 the second discussion in the Pen to Purpose series was held. This author series is the result of a collaboration between the NSU Department of Communication, Media, and the Arts and the Alvin Sherman Library, and sponsored by the Circle of Friends. Professor Efrat Freidman, who teaches undergraduate Even postercreative writing at NSU created the Pen to Purpose series in order to impress upon her students the value of strong writing skills in any profession. She conducted the interview and compelling conversation with Dr. Weill, former Director of the Center for Advanced Lung Disease and the Lung Transplant Program at Stanford, and author of the book Exhale.
Exhale is an inside look at the world of high-stakes medicine, complete with the decisions that are confronted, the mistakes that are made, and the story of a transplant doctor’s slow recognition that he needed to step away from the front lines. This book explores the cost of holding on too tight, of losing one’s way, and of the power of another kind of decision—to leave behind everything for a fresh start.
Dr. Weill’s account of his ten years spent directing the lung transplant program at Stanford illustrates not only the miracle of transplantation, but also how it is a very human endeavor performed by people with strengths and weaknesses, powerful attributes, and profound flaws.

If you missed it, watch the recording here.

NSU Library’s Circle of Friends is the community support arm for Alvin Sherman Library. The funds raised are used to enhance the library’s services, materials, and programs. With more Friends, we can make an even greater impact, so that we can bring more programs like this to the NSU and Broward County communities. So… what are you waiting for… why not consider becoming a member?!! For more information about Circle of Friends, please call 954-262-4593, email or visit To become a member or renew, please click here.

Civil Rights in the Sunshine State

The Alvin Sherman Library is currently exhibiting the Museum of Florida History’s Civil Rights in the Sunshine State. This rich and engaging exhibit explores the struggle of African Americans for equality in Florida from Reconstruction in 1877 through the 1970. Civil Rights in the Sunshine State is one of the first attempts to view the Florida civil rights movement through a statewide lens.

This exhibit and its three associated programs are a part of NSU’s Celebration of Black History Month. Each program will be presented in the Alvin Sherman Library’s Cotilla Gallery as well as through Zoom. Light refreshments will be served.  Full program abstracts are below the image. Thank you!

“The Lynching of Rubin Stacy”

Dr. David Kilroy, Chair, Department of Humanities and Politics- – Tuesday, February 15, 5:00-6:30PM

According to records maintained by the NAACP, between 1882 and 1968 there were 4,743 documented cases of lynching across the United States, with the majority of victims being African American.  A combination of their frequency and the system of white supremacy which condoned these mob killings ensured that most victims were soon forgotten. The case of Rubin Stacy, who was lynched by a mob in 1935 on what is today the corner of Davie Boulevard and SW 31st Avenue, stands out though because it was a recorded in a number of searing photographs taken that day. From the NAACP fliers that used these images in support of its anti-lynching campaign to the recent decision of the City of Fort Lauderdale to rename a stretch of Davie Boulevard in his memory, this talk will revisit the story of Rubin Stacy’s murder and photographs which propelled it to national attention.


“Eula Johnson and the Fort Lauderdale Wade-ins”

Ms. Janay Joseph, senior history major at NSU, and Ms. Tara Chadwick, Artist, and Curator of Exhibitions at History Fort Lauderdale – Friday, February 18, 5:00-6:30PM

Prior to the 1961 Wade-ins on Fort Lauderdale Beach, and a landmark district case, public facilities in Broward County were segregated. Eula Johnson was the first woman president of the Broward chapter of the NAACP. Johnson, along with Dr. Von D. Mizell coordinated and organized a series of protests called the “Wade-ins” in the summer of 1961 to desegregate the beaches. Both faced white supremacist backlash during and after the protests. The City of Fort Lauderdale eventually sued Johnson and Mizell for “disturbing the peace” during their demonstrations. Johnson and Mizell won their case, which set the precedent for the future desegregation of Broward County. This talk will be led by Janay Joseph and Tara Chadwick on Johnson’s legacy, and the work that can be done today within our current political climate. A preview of the documentary short film “She Had a Dream: Eula Johnson’s Fight to Desegregate Broward County” will also be featured, along with a discussion on the research and production of the film.


“Social Change through Art” – Open Classroom Series

Ms. Kandy Lopez-Moreno, M.F.A., Associate Professor in the Department of Communication, Media, and the Arts – Monday, February 21st, 5:00-6:30PM

Professor Lopez-Moreno will discuss how contemporary artists use art as a form of social activism to challenge the historic use of images as a tool to marginalize women of color. This discussion is the first of the multi-part Open Classroom Series.  The Open Classroom Series, a collaboration between the Farquhar Honors College and the Alvin Sherman Library, features open conservations with scholars from various disciplines.  These academics will share their expertise on important issues and provide insightful perspectives rarely seen in the media. Farquhar Honors College Dean Andrea Nevins will host and moderate the discussion.

The Florida Humanities Council Brings Events To YOU!

Over the years, the Florida Humanities Council  (FHC) has provided the Circle of Friends with wonderful programming.  

Perhaps you joined us for “Miami Vice”, or the 3 viewpoints of Hemingway, or maybe you “met” Marjorie Stoneman Douglas, or Harriet Beecher Stowe,  and more…

Now you can enjoy  presentations, discussions, author talks, lectures and more remotely, in the comfort of your own home, brought to you by FHC!
We encourage all of our members to check out the Florida Humanities Council’s site and attend their free events. Virtual and hybrid events are marked accordingly and registration is required, and in some cases, limited.

To register, just check out the event calendar by clicking here

Message from Florida Humanities:

“Alert: Due to COVID-19 (Coronavirus), some events have been cancelled or postponed. We are working to ensure that our events calendar remains accurate. We strongly urge you to call the event contact for any program you are interested in to confirm that the event is still planned.”

The Florida Humanities Council is the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities which, through funding from the Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, funds and coordinates statewide public humanities programs and publications that explore the people, places, and ideas that shape our state. In addition to their Speakers Bureau program, FHC awards grants for humanities projects, provides seminars for Florida teachers, organizes cultural tourism events around the state, and publishes FORUM, an award-winning magazine.


Circle of Friends Committees News

The Circle of Friends (CoF) for the NSU Alvin Sherman Library (ASL) has formed and/or expanded three new committees: Development and Events Committee (DEC)Marketing and Programming Development Committee (MPDC), and the Nominating Committee (NC).

The MPDC Committee met on November 1st. Kyle Fisher, Vice President of Public Relations and Marketing and Creative Services participated in the discussion. Their primary responsibilities are to develop a marketing plan and related materials for the COF and the ASL. The following charge will be submitted for vote at the November Board meeting.

The Marketing and Program Development Committee will work with University staff to develop a greater awareness of the Alvin Sherman Library and the Circle of Friends which supports it, and to generate an understanding of the Library’s needs and ideas for increasing annual donations and library card memberships. In addition, this committee will work with University staff to promote programs hosted by the Circle of Friends throughout the year.

The NC met on November 8th. This committee is responsible for developing a strong CoF Board of Directors. They voted to move forward with the further evaluation of two candidates for Board membership. The following charge will be submitted for approval:

The Nominating Committee will recruit and orient new Board members who will be approved by the full CoF Board. It will also make a recommendation for a slate of officers of the Board each year to be approved by the full Board. In addition, this committee recommends Chairs for each of the standing committees which are then approved by the full Board. This committee also provides methods for evaluating the performance of each Board member annually.


Circle of Friends Update

The Circle of Friends, the advisory board and fundraising partners of the NSU Alvin Sherman Library held its Annual Meeting on May 19, 2021  online to celebrate the achievements of the past year and installation of incoming Board and Officers.

Douglas Ford, M.D.  was installed as the newest Board Member, Chuck Morton as President, Barbara Grosz, M.Ed., D.H.L. as Vice-President, and Peter Woolf as Past President, while Rona Levitt and Daniel Fleischer will continue to serve in their roles as Secretary and Treasurer, respectively.

Also serving on the Board of Directors are Dr. Stephanie Brown, Adolfo J. Cotilla, Jr., Tony DuBose, Peter Garcia, Bonnie Lippman, Vilma Lopez, Greg McDermott, Luis A. Muriel, Ronnie Oller, Ann Porterfield, Janet Speth and Ex-Officios: Diane Klein, Lorraine Shim, Laura Sturaitis and Jim Hutchens.

During his address, outgoing President Peter Woolf thanked the Board for supporting the following three initiatives:

•    Two years ago, Circle of Friends’ funding enabled the ASL to upgrade our digital signage to include large touchscreen displays on the first and second floors. This year, this important project was completed, and today, digital signs are located throughout the building.
•    This year the Circle of Friends also invested in the ASL/OCL staff by funding our professional development budget. Although the pandemic lead to the cancellation of several opportunities, many more online offerings became available.
•    Circle of Friends is especially proud to have funded the Alvin Sherman Library’s contract with the consulting firm Library Strategies. This contract provides for 3-year strategic plans for both the library and the Circle of Friends.

Dr. John Wensveen, Ph.D., Chief Innovation Officer, Nova Southeastern University’s Alan B. Levan | NSU Broward Center of Innovation was the Keynote Speaker at this year’s Annual Meeting. Dr. Wensveen spoke about the development of the Levan Innovation Center and its impressive cutting edge, world class features and presented a virtual tour of this state-of-the-art center.

Circle of Friends is ready for another terrific year!