Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning Announces 2018 “Global Issues” Series

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Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning Announces 2018 “Global Issues” Series

Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning launches its 47th season with its hard-hitting Global Issues series in Sarasota, Venice and Lakewood Ranch. Internationally acclaimed experts explore the challenges and dilemmas we face at home and around the world in this engaging series of lectures and lively conversations.


(Sarasota, Florida) Internationally renowned experts discuss a vast range of domestic and global issues as part of Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning’s (SILL) 2018 “Global Issues” series. The new season features 72 programs in Sarasota, Venice and Lakewood Ranch, and runs from January through March. Speakers will explore dozens of topics, including the opioid crisis, artificial intelligence, America’s volatile politics, and topical issues in China, Korea, Russia and the Middle East.

This year’s headliners include: Hedrick Smith, the bestselling author and Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter; Martin Walker, senior fellow of the Global Business Policy Council, and a senior scholar of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars; James Collins, former U.S. ambassador to the Russian Federation and diplomat in residence at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; Dennis Ross, former Special Envoy for Middle East Peace and the William Davidson Distinguished Fellow at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy; and Mickey Edwards, vice president of the Aspen Institute, director of the Aspen Institute’s Rodel Fellowships in Public Leadership and a former U.S. congressman.

Robert Deutsch, a retired U.S. Foreign Service Officer who served as a State Department senior advisor on Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, is the program committee chair.

“We’re looking forward to an outstanding mix of returning and new speakers,” he says. “Ten speakers are new to our series, offering fresh perspectives we haven’t heard before.” Deutsch adds that a host of favorite speakers will return to offer their perspectives on key global issues ranging from the impact of Brexit to the future of the European Union to the motivations for Russia’s push for greater global influence.

“This is going to be another fabulous year for SILL,” says Jorie Lueloff, former NBC Chicago news anchor and the new president of SILL. “Our speakers for both Music Mondays and Global Issues are among the best in their fields. They will share with us their candid insights on the state of the world and what can be done about it. SILL patrons tell us all the time that these series engage their minds and expand their intellectual horizons, and that SILL is a rich and exciting part of the region’s cultural tapestry.”

SILL’s Global Issues lectures are 40 to 50 minutes, followed by 30 minutes of audience questions. The lectures are Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, 10:30 a.m., at First Church, 104 S. Pineapple Ave., in Sarasota; Tuesdays, 2:30 p.m., and Fridays, 10 a.m., at the Venice Community Center, 326 S Nokomis Ave., in Venice; and Thursdays at 7 p.m. at Cornerstone Church, 14306 Covenant Way in Lakewood Ranch. Doors open 40 minutes prior to the start of the lecture. Season subscriptions are $85 for a 12-lecture series. If seating is available, single lecture tickets are $10.  To purchase subscriptions, or learn about the program in more detail visit For more information, call 941-365-6404.



About the Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning

The Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning (SILL) is a non-profit organization that offers an expert lecture series to provide information on and discussion of the arts and contemporary global issues. SILL is guided by an all-volunteer board committed to modest pricing and enhanced outreach. Visit

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