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Beacon Hill Village

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Boston, MA 02114
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HomeConversation With... Resource Library


Beacon Hill Village presents leaders in a relaxed and conversational format. With expertise in a variety of disciplines --science, technology, medicine sports, politics, current events, the arts, pop culture and more—our speakers our always informative and entertaining. 

Conversations With…has presented more than 100 speakers since 2009 with ongoing support from: 


November 2022

Conversations With... Judy Foreman   

Join members of BHV for a discussion with local author and journalist Judy Foreman about her debut novel, CRISPR’d: A Medical Thriller.  Judy Foreman uses her decades of writing medical columns and science stories for The Boston Globe to take readers on a wild, all-too-plausible-ride into the future, featuring the cutting edge gene-editing technology: CRISPR.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.


october 2022

 Conversations With... Ken Gloss   

Kenneth Gloss, proprietor of the internationally known Brattle Book Shop in Boston’s Downtown Crossing section, will give a hybrid presentation on Thursday, October 27, 5:30 pm at King’s Chapel Parish House, 64 Beacon St, Boston. Ken will discuss the value of old and rare books. Ken, a rare book specialist and appraiser who is frequently seen on national TV, will talk in part about the history of his historic bookshop (, which goes back to circa 1825. He is a second-generation owner. Ken will discuss growing up in the book business, show some of his favorite finds while enjoying “the thrill of the hunt,” and explain how he appraises books and manuscripts. He has many fascinating anecdotes to share about private and institutional collecting as well as guidelines for building and maintaining a significant collection. There is also a Q&A session at the conclusion of his talk. Following the talk and question-and-answer session, Ken will give free verbal appraisals of books participants have on hand or will do so at his shop in Boston at a later scheduled date. This program is presented as part of Beacon Hill Village’s “Conversations with...” series with support from Cambridge Trust.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.


June 2022

Conversations With... Kevin Kenny of Wolf Hollow   

Wolf Hollow is a State and Federally licensed 501c3 nonprofit gray wolf sanctuary and educational facility located in Ipswich, Massachusetts. Their mission is the preservation of the wolf in the wild through education and exposure. They host the public on Saturdays and Sundays for educational tours and presentations and they host schools for field trips throughout the week.

Wolf Hollow hopes that through their presentations and tours that they can help debunk much of the misinformation surrounding wolves and, with any luck, create some advocates for the protection of wolves in the wild.

Kevin Kenny is the Operations Manager for Wolf Hollow. Joining as a volunteer in 2013, Kevin was hired on as Wolf Hollow's first employee in 2018 after graduating from Salem State University with a Bachelors of Science in Biology and Environmental Science.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.


may 2022

Conversations With... Tito SantosSilva    

Francisco "Tito" SantosSilva knows all about urban violence. 

As a young man growing up in Brockton, his educational and professional journey was almost derailed by street violence which took the life of a close friend. 

Since completing his education, he has worked to help young people from underserved communities reach their potential, including work with the Massachusetts Department of Youth Services supporting incarcerated young adults. 

Now he is meeting another immense challenge as the Executive Director of Boston Uncornered, which seeks, as its name suggests, to help gan-involved Boston youth find their way from a street corner to college instead of to prison. 

Hear about Boston Uncornered's inspiring work, and learn how you might help.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.


APril 2022

Conversations With... Bill Wilson    

Bill Wilson is the co-founder and Managing Partner of Birds & Beans coffee. With the help of three other families and support from Scott Weidensaul, Bridget Stutchbury, and Kenn Kaufman, they launched their company in 2008 to save the Smithsonian 'Bird Friendly®' shade grown coffee certification.
Half of the people in the US have a cup of coffee every day, but few understand the environmental impact of coffee.  Even fewer prioritize origin and know how coffee farming affects people, farms, forests, and birds all over the world.

Today Birds & Beans is an established Bird Friendly Coffee destination. our success has come from our loyal, conscientious customers and our dedicated partners. At Birds & Beans Coffee, we believe humanity will flourish if we are simply more friendly - to each other and to the natural world around us. We strongly support our certifications and give back 5% from every bag of coffee sold to our conservation partners. Birds & Beans is the only coffee brand in the USA that is 100% certified Smithsonian shade grown Bird Friendly®, USDA Organic and Fair Trade. Every bean in every bag helps to save birds, tropical forests, family farmers and their workers. local rural economies, and the Earth we all share.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.


March 2022

Conversations With... Mike Zoob on the Evolution of Road Scholar    

Fifty years ago, older adults were rarely viewed as a "marketing opportunity." As we all know, that has changed: Just witness the flyers that stuff our mailboxes heralding investment opportunities and so-called paradise retirement communities.

For better or worse, Road Scholar, formerly known as Elderhostel, and its residential educational adventures, helped change the view of older adults. Once thought of as rocking-chair-bound, mildly-addled, non-inquisitive beings who were counting their declining days, older Americans are now viewed as actively engaged - both physically and mentally - in all aspects of society. 

Road Scholar's story has been quite a saga: From the 200 adventuresome souls who took a chance on the company's inaugural offering in 1975, Road Scholar now has more than 120,000 annual participants across all 50 states and more than 150 countries

Click the link above for a recording of the event.



Conversations With... Imari Paris Jeffries    

Imari Paris Jeffries is Executive Director of King Boston, a nonprofit organization founded through The Boston Foundation in 2020 working to establish a 22-foot memorial sculpture, "The Embrace," on the Common next year. The memorial will pay tribute to the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Coretta Scott King and their work to further racial and economic justice here in Boston. Since embarking on this flagship project, King Boston has greatly expanded its scope, and is now developing a 25,000-square-foot research-oriented Center for Economic Justice in Roxbury, as well as Embrace Ideas, a weeklong festival that engages the community in anti-racist discourse through the arts and humanities.

At this next installment of BHV's speaker series "Conversations With..." Imari Paris Jeffries will speak about his vision for King Boston, the influence of the Black Lives Matter movement, and what it's like to lead a new nonprofit during the pandemic. He will also describe how "The Embrace" and other core King Boston projects are progressing, and, more broadly, offer his take on both the progress and remaining challenges to addressing systemic inequities and furthering racial and economic justice here in Boston and beyond.

Imari was recently named one of Boston's most Influential Bostonians by Boston Magazine and the Boston Business  Journals Power 50. He is a three-time graduate of UMass Boston and is currently pursuing his Ph.D. through UMass Boston's Higher Education Program. An Army veteran, Imari served from 1991-1996. He currently lives in Hyde Park with his family.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.

January 2022

Conversations With... Matthew Wilding    

Matthew Wilding is the Director of Visitor Experience & Content Development at Revolutionary Spaces. In this position, he oversees the development and implementation of educational and general visitor experiences for audiences of all ages. Previous to arriving at Revolutionary Spaces, he served as Director of Visitor Experience & Program Development at the Edward Kennedy Institute for the US Senate. Matt studied history at Suffolk University and UMass-Boston and has also held director-level positions at the Freedom Trail Foundation, Cambridge Historical Tours, and Peabody Essex Museum.

At this iteration of BHV's "Conversations With..." speaker series, we invite you to join Matthew Wilding for Massacre & Memory, a virtual tour exploring the complicated history of the Boston Massacre. With visual 'stops' at the historic sites we care for and neighboring locations, we'll look into the conversations and discourse that took place between a small community confined within jut four square miles.

Massacre & Memory explores the surprisingly small geography of colonial Boston and its central civic buildings - the Old State House, the Old South Meeting House, and Faneuil Hall - to uncover the roots of the conflict that escalated into a deadly riot, leaving five dead and a city changed. Was the tragedy that night the unlikely consequence of unpredictable events or the inevitable eruption of a close-knit community under intense strain?

Click the link above for a recording of the event.

november 2021

Conversations With... Alex Krieger    

"Throughout American history, a reconfiguring of society following a crisis often catapulted the nation forward. Shouldn't today's interrelated crises do so as well?"

Alex Krieger (Cornell '74), a Research Professor in Practice of Urban Design at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design shares his research on historical exhibits of idealism and optimism in American society with a focus on our contemporary moment and how a recommitment to optimism can help us move together towards a more equitable and secure future. 

At Harvard, Alex studies forms of settlement, considering what aspirations and desires shape our towns, cities and urban regions. His work highlights the efforts, cultural trends, and beliefs about what makes a good neighborhood, a better town, or a more humane city, and considers some longer consequences of proceeding to build such places. He is the author of City on a Hill: Urban Idealism in America from the Puritans to the Present (2019).

Click the link above for a recording of the event.


Conversations With... Barbara Shapiro    

B.A. Shapiro is the award-winning and New York Times bestselling author of nine novels, including Metropolis (May, 2022), The Collector's Apprentice, The Muralist and The Art Forger, which won the New England Book Award for Fiction among other honors. Her books have been selected as Community Reads throughout the country and have been translated into over a dozen languages. She holds a PhD in sociology and has directed research projects for a residential substance abuse facility, worked as a systems analyst/statistician, headed the Boston office of a software development firm, and served as an adjunct professor teaching sociology at Tufts University and creative writing at Northeastern University. She likes writing novels the best. Barbara splits her time between Boston and Naples, Florida.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.

June 2021

Conversations About... Gas Lamps, Gas Leaks and more    

We love our gas lamps and our beautiful trees on Beacon Hill - but the gas leaks from our lamps and streets threaten the trees. Ania Camargo, a Beacon Hill resident and community organizer on climate issues with Mothers Out Front, is leading the search for ways to preserve the unique character of Beacon Hill while transitioning to a healthier and more sustainable future.  Join Ania and her recent recruit, BHV member Betsy Peterson, to learn more about gas lamps, gas leaks, and other local impacts of natural gas.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.

may 2021

Conversations With... Michael Maler  

Michael Maler is the Metro-Boston Regional Site Administrator for Historic New England, overseeing the daily operations of eight of the organizations' thirty-eight historic sites. He holds a degree in art history from Duke University and a Masters Degree in Museum Studies from Harvard University, where he currently assists with graduate level teaching. He has held interpretive positions at the Paul Revere House, the Portland Museum of Art, and the Brick Store Museum in Kennebunk, Maine. Michael currently serves as a trustee for Historic Beverly and is an active member of the New England Museum Association, The American Association for State and Local History, and the Downtown Boston House Museum Alliance.  Join Michael as he provides insight into his role at Historic New England, a brief history of Otis House's past, and the bright new future it is facing amidst the current West End redevelopment projects.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.

April 2021

Conversations With... Bob Mannino   

U.S. Lightship Museum President, Robert Mannino, Jr., will take us back in time to Boston Harbor's vibrant past, illustrating its unique rich history, culture and evolution as an important maritime port of call from its discovery in 1614 to the present day. In his presentation, Mr. Mannino will be showing many rare historic photos, illustrations and charts of Boston Harbor area landmarks that are no longer in existence and not seen by many people.  After seeing the presentation, you will gain a new appreciation of Boston Harbor's past.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.

april 2021

Conversations With... Ben Rosenberg 

Ben Rosenberg is a principal at Silman, a structural engineering firm with offices in Boston and elsewhere.  In his fifteen years at Silman, he has worked on new construction, renovation, and historic preservation projects that range from single- and multi-family residences, to commercial and institutional buildings, to a number of major new buildings for higher education institutions. He also has significant experience on a variety of historic preservations projects. Recent projects include the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., the Howard Thurman Center renovation at Boston University, and the flood mitigation project for the Farnsworth House in Plano, IL.  Ben also teaches both Concrete Structures and Steel Structures at the Rhode Island School of Design.  Ben is the principal-in-charge of the restoration and seismic retrofit of the Shaw Memorial.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.

april 2021

Music Salon: The Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival     

This music salon takes us inside one of the country's training grounds for the next generation of chamber musicians. The acclaimed artist faculty of the Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival are performers of the highest caliber who gather every summer in Burlington, Vermont, to work with some of the finest violin, viola, cello and piano students from throughout the United States and across the globe. The intensive, month-long program, which includes private lessons, study and performance of the chamber music repertoire and master classes with eminent artists, teaches these student musicians not only to perform, but to be advocates for their art.

Click the link above for a recording of the event.

MArch 2021

Conversations With... Carl Scovel 

The Reverend Carl Scovel, Minister of King's Chapel for many years, has presided at more than 600 weddings, and once remarked that his own marriage of more than sixty years has been a sequence of different marriages.

Carl has just published his latest book , I Do: Quotes on Marriage from the Married, the Unmarried, and Me. The book is available from Carl (autographed on request) as well as from Amazon and other booksellers.  


Click the link above for a recording of this event.

MArch 2021

Music Salon: Conversation with Sharon Isbin  

Acclaimed for her extraordinary lyricism, technique and versatility, multiple Grammy Award winner Sharon Isbin was named the 2020 Musical America Worldwide Instrumentalist of the Year, the first guitarist ever to receive the coveted honor in its 59 year history. Soloist with over 200 orchestras, Isbin has performed in the world's finest halls.  She has premiered over 80 works written for her by some of the world's finest composers, and directs the guitar departments at the Aspen Music Festival and the Juilliard School. We are honored and delighted that she joined our March 3 Salon over Zoom.

Click the link above for a recording of this event.

february 2021

Conversations With... Stephen Kendrick       

Martin Luther King, Jr. was arrested in October 1960 and held for nine days in a Georgia jail. When Jack and Bobby Kennedy were told his life could be in danger, they helped engineer his release. The Kennedys broadcast their success to Black voters in churches all over the North and South. On election day, grateful for King's safety and freedom, Blacks voted overwhelmingly for Jack Kennedy for president of the United States, giving him a crucial edge in his victory over rival Richard Nixon.

The Reverend Stephen Kendrick, minister at the First Church, Boston, and his son Paul Kendrick, have written a new book about this dramatic story and the people who were involved.

Reviewers have praised the book. "No brief review can do full justice to the Kendricks' masterly and often riveting account of King's ordeal and the 1960 "October Surprise" that may have altered the course of modern American political history. Suffice it to say that any reader who navigates the many twists and turns and surprises in this complex tale will come away recognizing the power of historical contingency," wrote Raymond Arsenault in the New York Times

Click the link above for a recording of this event.


January 2021

Conversations With... Jeff Sparr   

Paint4Peace™ is the original PeaceLove program. It uses creativity and artistic expression as a way to inspire, build self-confidence, and deliver a message of hope.
Jeff shares his story of personal struggle, and how painting has helped him find self-love and peace of mind.

Click the link above for a recording of this event.