Skip to main content

October 2014


the latest from FedState — October 15, 2014

See you in Philadelphia, October 30 to November 2—
the program officers meet October 29.

Benjamin Franklin is the muse of the National Humanities Conference, the topic of which is Leadership in a Time of Change. Franklin said: "When you’re finished changing, you’re finished."

"Benjamin Franklin is the founding father who winks at us. ... [H]e turns to us from history's stage with eyes that twinkle behind those newfangled spectacles. He speaks to us, through his letters and hoaxes and autobiography, not with orotund rhetoric but with a chattiness and clever irony that is very contemporary, sometimes unnervingly so. We see his reflection in our own time."

Benjamin Franklin: An American Life by Walter Isaacson


 How Millennial Are You? Click on the image to take the Pew Research Center's quiz.
Homework: How Millennial Are You? Click on the image to take the Pew Research Center's quiz.

This year's Capps Lecture will be given by Paul Taylor of the Pew Research Center. He talked about his new book, The Next America: Boomers, Millennials, and the Looming Generational Showdown, with John Stewart on The Daily Show. Takeways from that conversation include: The Millennials are "a very liberal group. ... They still believe in government. ...We are becoming a rainbow nation ... and the Millennials are totally cool with that." The Daily Show video is on Taylor's bio page.


working together / leading together

NEH Chairman William D. Adams
NEH Chairman William D. Adams

Chairman Adams' October is full of state humanities councils. On the 23rd he visits the Kansas Humanities Council to participate in "The Heart of the Matter: Humanities and Civic Life" at the Eisenhower Presidential Library in Abilene. He spends the day of October 27th with the Maine Humanities Council in Portland. Later that week, he will be at the Federation of State Humanities Councils conference in Philadelphia from Thursday through Saturday. Set your alarms so you won't miss Saturday's 8:45 breakfast with him.


The NEH staffers on the program, with the days and times of their sessions.
The NEH staffers on the program, with the days and times of their sessions.


Share ideas with NEH staff members during the National Humanities Conference. On FRIDAY, Robert Straughter and Tarsha Johnson take you through the details of working with the Office of Grant Management (10:30-11:45); Edie Manza, Director of Federal/State Partnership; Karen Mittelman, Director of Public Programs; and Eva Caldera, Assistant Chairman for Partnership and Strategic Initiatives,in "Standing Together: The Humanities and the Experience of War" (1:30-4:30); Carol Peters of EDSITEment joins the Marketplace of Ideas (1:30-2:30); and Judy Havemann, Director of Communications, explores media options (2:30-4:30). SATURDAY starts with the Chairman's breakfast from 8:45-10:15. There are three sessions with NEH staff in the 10:30-11:45 slot: look into the future with FedState's Kathleen Mitchell; Courtney Chapin, Chief of Staff, talks about best practices for dealing with Congress; and Inspector General Laura Davis brings you up to date with what's going on in her world. Edie Manza introduces new board members to NEH at 1:15-3:15. Interested in Challenge Grants? Be sure to talk with Andrea Anderson and Brandon Johnson.

All the NEH staffers attending the conference. Most names have links to their emails.
All the NEH staffers attending the conference. Most names have links to their emails.


William D. Adams, Chairman; Andrea Anderson, Acting Director, Challenge Grants; Leondra Burchall, Program Officer, Federal/State Partnership; Eva Caldera, Assistant Chairman, Partnerships & Strategic Initiatives; Courtney Chapin, Chief of Staff; Laura Davis, Inspector General; Lindsay Forcade, Confidential Assistant to the White House Liaison and Director of Congressional Affairs; Anna Gillis, Writer-Editor; Caitlin Green, Special Assistant to the Chairman; Judy Havemann, Director of Communications; Tarsha Johnson, Grants Administrator; Brandon Johnson, Senior Program Officer, Challenge Grants; Edie Manza, Director, Federal/State Partnership; Meg Ferris McReynolds, Program Officer, Federal/State Partnership; Kathleen Mitchell, Senior Program Officer, Federal/State Partnership; Tony Mitchell, Director, Human Resources; Karen Mittelman, Director, Public Programs; Carol Peters, Director, EDSITEment; Malcolm Richardson, Senior Partnership Officer; Robert Straughter, Director, Grant Management; and Carole Watson, Deputy Chairman.

thoughts on leading

“Leadership is not only about making things happen but also—and perhaps more importantly—about enabling others to do so.” —Esther Mackintosh, President, Federation of State Humanities Councils

"Peter Drucker remained top dog among management gurus for 50 years not because he attended more conferences but because he marinated his mind in great books." —Schumpeter in The Economist


Walter Capps "taught the community, but just as importantly, he learned from the community."


"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." —Maya Angelou


"I was very proud that the right thing was done regardless of political consequences."—Eleanor Roosevelt


Franklin "believed in having the humility to be open to different opinions." —Walter Isaacson


“Instructions for living a life. / Pay attention. / Be astonished. / Tell about it.” —Mary Oliver


"We do not need magic to change the world, we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already: we have the power to imagine better." —J. K. Rowling at Harvard


"We must come to see that human progress never rolls in on wheels of inevitability." —Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail



National Endowment for the Humanities
400 7th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20506
202.606.8254, main number — 202.606.8365, fax

Leondra Burchall, program officer, 202.606.2324 [ about ]
Edie Manza, director, 202.606.8257 [ about ]
Meg Ferris McReynolds, program officer, 202.208.7100 [ about ]
Kathleen Mitchell, senior program officer, 202.606.8302 [ about ]
Shirley Newman, program assistant, 202.606.8254 [ about ]

connect with us twitter