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Hale Series Announces 2014 Speakers

Audiences for the scheduled talks in the 2014 Anne and Lee Hale Speaker Series will have an opportunity to hear speeches ranging on topics from sports to cancer care.

               Hale committee members announced this week that the seventh annual series will kick off on March 19 with “Elizabethtown: the 350th Celebration of the Founding of New Jersey,” a talk given by Rev. Dr. Robert Higgs, a historian and chairman of the Elizabethtown Anniversary Committee. He will discuss the history of New Jersey’s founding and the events planned for 2014. Higgs is pastor of The First Presbyterian Church of Elizabeth.

               Westfield resident Darlene Gibbon, chief of gynecological oncology and Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, will speak May 14 on “Personalized Medicine: What Targeted Therapy Will Mean for Cancer Care.” Dr. Gibbon, who also is a researcher, has been cited by New Jersey magazine as a Top Doctor.

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               “Westfield, the Sports Capital of New Jersey” is the topic for a Sept. 17 talk by Bruce Johnson, a former Westfield resident and author of the column, Devil’s Den, in The Westfield Leader. Johnson has written three books related to sports and is completing “It’s Official: Westfield Is No. 1,” a history of early Westfield High sports.

               Freia  Mitarai, the former executive director of The Westfield Foundation, will discuss “The Volunteer Program at the Metropolitan Museum of Art” in a Nov. 5 talk. Mitarai , now a Manhattan resident, is on the Executive Committee of the Volunteer Organization at the museum where more than 400 volunteers offer 35 tours daily in many languages. 

               The series was started by Lee Hale in honor of his wife, Anne, who was active in the community prior to her death in 2007. Mr. Hale passed away last year. Funding comes from the Thomas Glasser Foundation and the Anne and Lee Hale Fund. 

The Hales’ daughter, Barbara, is a member of the Speaker Series committee that also includes Linnea Rhodes, Mary Orlando, Tina Lesher, Joel Farley, and Sherry Cronin.  The Friends of Westfield Memorial Library hosts the series.

               All of the hour-long talks will take place starting at 7 p.m. at the library, 550 East Broad St.

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