Members of our faculty are area residents representing a wide variety of intellectual and experiential backgrounds. While many have had careers on college campuses or at private or public schools, others are businessmen, medical professionals, lawyers, artists, and more. Each one brings new perspectives and a readiness to engage constructively with our senior learners. As of Spring 2017, 148 different instructors have offered courses for MSC; 51 of them are still active.
If you are interested in teaching for us, please contact read our New Faculty Information page first. Questions? Contact us by e-mail (email@example.com) or mail (29 Burbank Avenue, Suite 6, Brunswick ME 04011) with your background information and a course proposal. Our Curriculum Committee is responsible for selecting faculty and courses.
New Faculty (listed alphabetically)
We welcome the following new faculty members for the 2018-2019 academic year:Edward Cherian spent 32 years as Professor of Information Systems at George Washington University. His distinguished career includes awards (curriculum, research, service, publications) and honors (Ford Foundation Fellow, Senior Fulbright Scholar, National Science Foundation Advisor), and numerous technical publications. His consulting assignments include work with the Defense Science Board, The U. S. Department of Education, Google, IBM, and others.
Norm Curthoys received a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of California, Berkeley and conducted basic biomedical research with over 40 years of continuous funding from the National Institutes of Health. During this time, he also taught biochemistry to undergraduate, graduate, and medical students.Susan F. Goran is a nurse with 45 years of full-time experience in a variety of roles in specialty ICUs; she has extensive teaching experience with both professional and public audiences. Currently she is an Adjunct Faculty Member in the School of Nursing for the University of New England. Richard Mears is a 20+ year veteran of Law Enforcement in Maine, a national and internationally recognized police trainer, and a retired Associate Professor with the University of Maine System. Dan Possumato is a retired Deputy Garrison Commander and a former anti-terrorist consultant for the U.S. Army. He is a graduate of the U S. Army War College and is a part-time Special Investigator for the U.S. Department of State. Sarah Timm, M.A. Art History, studied Medieval and Early Modern art and culture at Florida State University, where she also taught courses in art history and public speaking. Sarah is currently the Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator at Maine Maritime Museum.
Recent Faculty (listed alphabetically)
We are proud to highlight members of our faculty who have taught for us in the past few academic years. The following brief introductions are representative of the breadth and background of all our instructors.
Morton Achter — Educated in musicology, music theory, piano, and theater history at the University of Michigan (BM, MM, PhD), Morton’s extensive academic tenure was at Otterbein College in Ohio, where he served as Chair of the Department of Music and taught theory, composition, music history, music appreciation, opera, and musical theater. He has also taught at Indiana University-Purdue University in Indiana, University of Michigan, Boston University, and the Boston Conservatory.
Morton has been responsible for the overall direction, the music direction, and the choreography for five dozen operas, musicals, and plays at the professional, college, and community levels. Since retirement in 2002 he has been a consultant for the National Association of Schools of Music, director of eight theater productions in the Damariscotta area, and led pre-opera talks for the Met HD broadcasts in Damariscotta.
David Baker — David has over 50 years of acting and 10 years of theatrical, stage managing and directing experience in both the UK and the US. He has had roles in Oklahoma, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Oliver and many others. Some of the plays he has directed are Pirates of Penzance, Carousel and Twelve Angry Men and Women. He is a resident of Bath and has recently been involved in a number of theatrical productions at the Chocolate Church.
John Beaven — In the early years of Senior College, John Beaven offered courses on the City of Jerusalem, on the operatic composer Verdi, and “Seekers and Belivers,” co-taught with the late Bill Brown. More recently, John has taught several courses on opera, of which he is a long-time student.
John has been a University organist and music faculty member (Cornell) and considers music to be his “first life,” playing also piano and harpsichord. He is an ordained Episcopal priest having served parishes in Montana and New York State, been chaplain and head of the Theology Department at the Kent School in Connecticut, and Dean of St. Luke’s Cathedral in Portland, among other positions.
Doug Bennett received his PhD in Political Science from Yale University after graduating magna cum laude from Haverford College. He has taught Political Science at Temple University, Swarthmore and Earlham College. Before retiring in 2011, Doug served as president of Earlham College for 4 years. Doug lives in Topsham and is very active as a board member of the Brunswick Topsham Land Trust.
Bob Bunselmeyer — Since his 2007 course on British soldier poets of World War I, Bob has been teaching Modern European History at Bates College. Formerly he taught at Yale, Fordham, and Villanova; he served as a university administrator at Yale (his doctoral alma mater) and at Columbia. As a professor of British history, he has sought to draw from other disciplines to enrich students’ understanding of the times. Bob has a lifelong interest in how the novel helps us to understand history. In historians’ unending effort to interpret the past, they have employed a host of tools from written and photographic documents to computers to carbon-dating and more. Among the oldest tools historians have been using is creative literature to aid in recapturing the events, representative characterization, mood and spirit of times far removed from their own. It should be said that, from the time early man first spun tales around a campfire, creative stories have been indispensable in capturing and perpetuating the spirit of an age.
Marlis Cambon — Of herself, Marlis Cambon writes: “Like Dante, I am a traveler at heart and in reality, because I divide my life between the two poles of my life: Europe and the US. I am at home in both and my life adjusts naturally to each environment. So do my interests: while in Italy, I take in as much art, architecture and its history as possible, some mountain hiking, and during the winter cross-country skiing. While in Harpswell I enjoy the sea, the woods and their creatures around my house, my modest garden, and the fruits of the earth: mushrooms in particular, and berries. I enjoy crafts: knitting, felting, and weaving baskets.”
Fred Cichocki is a long time college professor with a doctorate in ecology and evolutionary biology from The University of Michigan.
Susan Danly — Susan was Senior Curator at the Portland Museum of Art from 2002-2012. During her career she specialized in the fields of American art and the history of photography. She received her Ph.D. from Brown University and her B.A. from the University of Wisconsin. From 1993-2000 she was Curator of American Art at the Mead Art Museum at Amherst College. Prior to this she was a Curator at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art. She has also been a lecturer at several universities.
Leona Dufour — Leona lives in Georgetown and holds a B.A. in English from Wilkes University and a M.A. in English from the University of Maryland. She taught honors and advanced placement in English at Carmel High School in Carmel, New York.
Charles Dunbar has been immersed in international relations for over 50 years as professor, writer, and State Department foreign service officer, including service as ambassador to Qatar and Yemen and chargé d’affaires at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan in the early ‘8O’s. He has served in Iran, Afghanistan, Morocco, and elsewhere in the Mideast in countries which some of us are challenged even to locate on a map. Since leaving the State Department, Ambassador Dunbar has taught at Case Western Reserve University where he is Professor of International Affairs. He has also taught, and is still teaching, in such other higher education institutions as Boston University, Simmons College, and Cleveland State University where he has also served as President of the Cleveland Council on World Affairs. Widely published, Dunbar has written numerous journal articles, chapters in books on Foreign Policy and op-ed pieces in such newspapers as The Boston Globe, The International Herald Tribune and The Cleveland Plain Dealer, as well as frequent stints as commentator on international affairs in both radio and television
Stuart Gillespie retired from a 30-year career as Director of Choral Ensembles and chair of Fine Arts at Naugatuck Valley Community College in. He began his career in music as a baritone singer with the United States 7th Army Chorus – Europe. He was the choral master of the Manchester Symphony Chorale from 1972 to 1984 and a singer of historical sea music at the Mystic Seaport Museum in Mystic, CT. In 1998 he received the American Choral Director Association’s “Outstanding Choral Director of Connecticut” award. He is a published composer and when not messing around with old boats, old cars or old music, he takes delight in teaching the 50 voice Midcoast Senior College Singers.
Peter Goodwin earned his A.B. in Geology from Dartmouth College, 1958, and his Ph.D. in Geology from the University of Iowa, 1964. He was Professor of Geology at Temple University, Philadelphia PA, from 1963-2000.
Peter Griffin — After earning degrees from Dartmouth and Stanford, and a three year stint teaching at Whitman college in Washington, followed by working for an international commodity merchant, Peter would turn, in his spare time, to playing Bach on the piano and his kit-built harpsichord. Upon retirement to Maine in 2006, Peter now free to pursue his passion, studied the pipe organ with Ray Cornils and began a personal in-depth study of Bach, his life and music.
When not messing about with Bach, his organ, or his small catboat, Peter volunteers as a docent for the Kotschmar Organ in Portland and serves as Director and Treasurer of both the Holbrook Community Foundation in Cundy’s Harbor and the Bowdoin International Music Festival. He says his vegetable garden is much too large, and he is learning to grow winter greens in an unheated hoop house.
Paul B. Janeczko taught high school English for 25 before leaving the classroom and working as a writer and visiting poet. He has published over 50 books, including fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and poetry anthologies.
Alison Johnson — Alison lives in Topsham and is the author of Henry James: His Life Revealed Through His Letters and Wallace Stevens: A Dual Life as Poet and Insurance Executive and recently released her documentary titled “The World of Wallace Stevens.” She is also an expert on Willa Cather.
Karen Johnson — is a graduate of the University of Maine and a literacy, reading and writing specialist.
Paul Johnson has taught many Senior College courses on East Asian cultures after teaching at Shandong Province’s Qufu University in 2000-2001. More recently his courses have dealt with the Western Hemisphere– cultures where his American Studies background has focused in his previous teaching career at universities & independent schools.
Paul Kalkstein — hired in 1970 at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, Paul had been educated at Phillips. He then took degrees at Princeton and Yale. His specialization is English and American literature with particular interest in the writings of the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries. He has taught advanced high school classes on Milton, Shakespeare, and Spenser. He is also much concerned about good writing and has both taught composition and published several books on the subject. In this vein he has sat on the Commission on Composition of the National Council of Teachers of English. Further, Paul is very much interested in distance learning, the importance service of online enrichment programs.
Janet Kehl taught all levels of French at Phillips Exeter Academy and at the Trinity School in Manhattan.
Ann Kimmage — Ann was a professor at SUNY-Plattsburg. There and elsewhere she has taught literature, composition, and autobiographical writing, the Russian and Czech languages, and the philosophy and practice of yoga. In writing her own memoir, An Un-American Childhood, about growing up in communist Czechoslovakia and China, she became inspired to teach memoir. She is also writing a yoga memoir.
Dennis Kimmage — Dennis has a Ph.D. from Cornell and years of college teaching experience. Courses he has taught at the Senior College include Pasternak’s Dr. Zhivago, Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead, and The Quicksand World of Alfred Hitchcock.
Jane Knox — Jane received a Ph.D. in Slavic Languages and Literature from the University of Texas, is Professor Emeritus in the Russian Department at Bowdoin, and is a specialist in Russian cinema.
Mike Knudsen — Mike lives in Bath. He has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon and was a computer scientist with Bell Labs.
Gary Lawless — Many of us are familiar with Gary, co-owner of Gulf of Maine Bookstore in Brunswick. Educated in Mane with a honorary Doctorate from University of Southern Maine, for a time he lived as poet’s apprentice in the residence of California’s notable environmental activist and poet, Gary Snyder.
He has taught at several public and collegiate schools in this State, including Bates College. Long-time editor/publisher of Blackberry Books, he has written sixteen collections of poetry and given readings and workshops here and abroad. He has traveled nearby and far-and-wide to be poet in residence, as well has been published in numerous magazines and anthologies. He lives in Nobleboro, Maine, as caretaker of the Maine home of authors Elizabeth Coatsworth and Henry Beston, and their daughter Kate Beston Barnes, Maine’s first poet laureate.Cynthia M. Little was born and raised in Chicago and both her parents immigrated from Palestine in the 1940’s. She has seven siblings, and notes that “it was important for us to know our culture, our language, and our lineage as taught to us by our parents. In our home we lived our culture.”
Tom McCarthy — a graduate of Northeastern University and a Viet Nam Veteran, Tom is a retired U. S. Secret Service Special Agent. Since 1995 he has traveled worldwide, including war zones, for the Department of State lecturing and providing training to host countries’ protection services. Tom has retired to Camden.
Leonard Meiselman — Born and raised in NYC, Leonard received his art education at the Cooper Union, the Skowhegan School of Art, and the Cranbrook Academy in Michigan.After living in Florence, Italy, he returned to the United States and now maintains studios in New York and Wiscasset. Leonard has had one-person exhibitions at the Camden Arts Center in London, the Yeshiva University Museum in New York, the Holocaust Center in Manhasset, Long Island, and elsewhere.
Susan Mikesell — Susan has been involved with Senior College for many terms. With RN, BSN, MSW, and Ph.D. degrees, she is a well-trained and long-experienced psychologist, psychotherapist, clinical social worker, and nurse. She has given many years to clinical and consulting experience, to independent practice, and teaching in continuing education courses and in workshops.
David Miller grew up in Pennsylvania and graduated from Princeton in 1964, doing further graduate work at Georgetown University, the University of Dallas, and Connecticut State University. He has taught and taken various positions around the country; Teacher, Director of Development, Dean of Admission, Headmaster ofa boarding school, and Principal of a high school for learning disabled students. More recently, since coming to Maine, David has substituted at various schools in Maine and has Chaired the Bath Patten Free Library Board of Trustees, and the Woolwich Central School Building Committee, coached the Bowdoin Rugby team, and worked on the RSU 1 Maine consolidation effort.
Duncan Newcomer is a teacher, a licensed psychotherapist, and an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. He is a published poet and the author of “Desperately Seeking Mary” a book on the role of the sacred feminine in psychotherapy and religious life. He is a labyrinth facilitator and maintains a small practice for spiritual direction in Belfast. He and his wife, the poet and Latin teacher Rebecca Jessup, live in Belfast.Richard S. Neiman is a retired physician. A native of Boston and a graduate of Harvard College and Tufts University School of Medicine, he was on the faculties at Harvard, Tufts, and Boston University and at Indiana University School of Medicine, where he directed the Division of Hematologic Pathology. He retired in 2000 as Emeritus Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and Internal Medicine. Since retirement, he has served on several Harpswell town committees, on the Boards of the LARK Society of Chamber Music, the DaPonte String Quartet, and Curtis Memorial Library, and is a member of Town and College Club. Mark S. Oliver earned a B.A. in English Language/Literature – M.A. in English from Southern New Hampshire University and is part of The National Honor Society. He retired from the military after traveling extensively as an aviator aboard land based P-3 Orions and carrier based S-3 Viking aircraft. On those travels he experienced the rich cultures of the Middle-East, Europe, South America, Australia, and Asia. In England, Scotland, and Wales however, he became fascinated with British literature and how it reflected, commented, and shaped Western Culture; specifically, he developed a passion for Shakespeare’s literature, his enigmatic story, and how it inter-played with the Elizabethan (Tudor) Era. For over 20 years Mark has taught, tutored, and mentored military members, university students, and teachers on a myriad of subjects. Victor Papacosma is Professor Emeritus of History and Director Emeritus of the Lemnitzer Center for NATO and European Union Studies at Kent State University, where he taught for 42 years. He received his A.B. from Bowdoin College and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Indiana University.He has published extensively on Balkan issues, particularly on twentieth-century and contemporary Greek politics and security issues.Among his publications are The Military in Greek Politics: The 1909 Coup d’État, which also appeared in Greek translation, and ten coedited volumes of Lemnitzer Center conference proceedings.He served as an officer of the Modern Greek Studies Association and as its Executive Director for ten years until 2014. Jeff Pengel is a former geologist, outdoor educator & high school science teacher (biology & earth science) is a Maine Master Naturalist instructor and a volunteer naturalist for the AMC. He is presently employed by a regional internet and data services provider. Steve Piker is an anthropologist who taught for 44 years at Swarthmore College before retiring to Yarmouth in 2009. He has taught several courses at OLLI at USM, Portland. Steve also does volunteer work at the Portland Boys and Girls Club and at the Riverton Elementary School in Portland.
Charlotte Price — With emphasis on the study of economics, monetary policy, and diplomacy, Charlotte took degrees at Denison University, Duke, and Columbia (B.A., M.A., Ph.D.). Following research in the public and private sectors, she commenced an extensive teaching career, at Columbia, Barnard, and Vassar before over thirty years at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, NY. A sampling of her courses at Sarah Lawrence includes: Economic Policy and the Environment of the Future, American Economic History, and Domestic and International Monetary Policy.
Bob Pring taught philosophy in the State University of New York system for many years. At MSC, he has taught courses on Socrates, Plato, Montaigne, Epicurus, Barbara Kingsolver and Terry Tempest Williams.
Ted Reese — brought up in Massachusetts, Ted earned a B.A. from Yale, an Ed.M. from Harvard, and a M.A. and a Ph.D. from Brandeis. Prior to coming to Midcoast Senior College, he taught English at public and private schools and colleges for almost forty years, then ten years at Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) in Portland. Here he has led classes in Arthurian Literature, American Poets, and Modern American Drama.
In his “other life,” Ted helps with Mt. Ararat’s wrestling team, has assisted with Olympic and World Cup Teams, and contributed to the USA National Wrestling Syllabus. He was the first person in the USA to earn the FILA (international wrestling’s governing body) designation of “Master Coach,” was Maine’s Coach of the Year six times, was National Coach of the Year in 1996, has begun programs in five schools (including USM), and is in Maine’s Wrestling Hall of Fame.
Stuart Ross — After teaching in various colleges in Michigan and New York, Stuart Ross came to Maine in 1970 to teach in the Art Department at Colby College in Waterville. He has painted and exhibited in midcoast Maine since, and currently teaches painting, drawing and printmaking at Midcoast Senior College in Bath, where he lives.
Niles Schore practiced law for thirty-five years, mostly in Pennsylvania with a brief stint in Georgia where he founded the Elderly Law Project and was staff lawyer for a statewide health law project. In the Pennsylvania Senate he says he was privileged to work for Senator Roxanne Jones, a welfare mother and the first African-American woman ever elected to that Senate. He was also the Democratic Counsel and Executive Director for the Public Health & Welfare Committee. Prior to retiring to Maine in 2010, he spent seven years as senior management in the Department of Public Welfare where he developed. implemented and monitored policies for poverty programs with nearly two million customers.
Gardner Shaw is a former high school history teacher, a former professor of Political Science, a former consultant to government and industrial organizations, and a former taxi driver. He has worked in recent years helping organizations decide what their future should look like, what to do to get there, and how to know if it’s working. He lives with his wife, Barbara, on Pitch Pine Hill in Phippsburg. They are both active members of both the Midcoast Senior College and the Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain Civil War Round Table.
Robert Small — born in Australia, Robert attended schools and worked there until leaving for France in 1961. In his senior year in high school, he had been cast in the role of Koko in the Mikado. He never recovered and has been a devoted fan of Gilbert and Sullivan ever since. His course on Gilbert and Sullivan inspired the same delight that these wonderful musicals have been giving the world for over 100 years.
Barbara Snapp has taught many courses at Senior College – all telling the “stories” of science. Stable themes include: ecology and evolution, structure and function, impact on culture, connections between the physical and the biological – interwoven to build a multidimensional understanding.
Craig Snapp — Craig comes to Senior College from the world of industry. A physicist with a doctorate from Cornell University, he began his career with Hewlet-Packard Company, responsible for process technology, product design and product planning for semiconductor geometry, microwave bipolar transistors and integrated systems. Involved in establishing silicon bipolar technology and semiconductor products, he was also a consultant for microwave power amplifiers for wireless communications. Craig has a particular interest in GPS navigation.
Linton Studdiford is a graduate of Princeton and the University of Pennsylvania where he earned his B.A. and M.A. in English which he taught as headmaster at Doane Academy, an Episcopal day school in Burlington, N.J. In 1985 he was ordained an Episcopal priest and served in parishes in Skowhegan, Sanford and Cape Elizabeth. After retiring he was assistant to the Diocese of Maine with responsibility for congregational development and clergy deployment.
Linton and his wife Bonnie live in Brunswick where they indulge their passion for the outdoors and for gardening. Much of this passion can be traced, at least partially, to Linton’s interest in Wendell Berry, whose poems and essays are classic works in the environmental movement, and whose book, The Unsettling of America, has become a classic in thinking about sustainable communities.
Pilar Tirado has a doctorate in Hispanic Studies from Brown University and has taught at undergraduate and graduate levels including at Bates and Bowdoin. Pilar lives in Brunswick and offers private and small group instruction in Spanish. Her passion is Cervante’s masterpiece Don Quixote.Joy Vaughn has been a practicing artist and teacher for over 40 years. She lives in South Bristol where she takes care of gardens, a cat and is the steward of an island in the Damariscotta River. She has been passionate about the world of images since high school and equally passionate about the preservation of open spaces in Maine since 1972.
Bud Warren has spent the majority of his eighty years in the lower Kennebec region, and nearly half a century studying and sharing its history.
Howard Whitcomb — Howard earned his B.A. at Brown University in 1961. He earned his Ph.D. at Rockefeller College, University of Albany in 1972 in Political Science. He spent the next 30 years at Lehigh University and from 1992 to 1996 he was an Associate Dean in the College of Arts and Sciences. In that capacity he oversaw faculty personnel matters in 16 academic departments. He retired and moved to Georgetown. Howard’s specialty in Political Science is American constitutional Law.
Bob Williams — Bob has taught Russian and European history at Williams College, Washington University in St. Louis, Davidson College (where he was also Dean of Faculty) and (in retirement) at Bates College. He is the author of numerous books and articles, one of which, Russian Art and American Money (1980), was nominated by Harvard University Press for the Pulitzer Prize. Bob received his B.A. in Mathematics from Wesleyan University, his A.M. in Russian Studies and Ph.D. in History from HarvardUniversity and an honorary doctorate from Wittenberg University. He currently resides in The Highlands with his wife Ann and serves on the board of Senior College.David Wood is a retired Coast Guard Captain with extensive seagoing experience, including 4 years in command of the Coast Guard’s training barque EAGLE, a 3-masted sailing ship. He is a past chairman of the American Sail Training Association, and has been its representative to Sail Training International. He is a graduate of Amherst College, the Boston University School of Education, and the Naval War College senior officer course. Reiko Yonogi is a native of Tokyo. She received a B.A. in English and American Literature from a Japanese university in Tokyo, and a M.A. and Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She taught Japanese language, culture and literature at the University of Georgia, Athens, and Indiana University at Indianapolis for over 20 years.
George Young earned a B.A. in English from Duke, and a Ph.D. in Slavic Languages and Literatures from Yale. He has taught Russian language and literature and general humanities at Grinnell, Dartmouth, and UNE, written extensively on Russian literature and intellectual history, and conducted previous courses on Tolstoy at OLLI in Portland. His most recent book is The Russian Cosmists (Oxford, 2012). He and his wife, Pat, live in Brunswick.