Features Writing

Don’t Deflate Meals On Wheels

Don’t deflate Meals on Wheels

There are basic needs we have in our quest for a basic human existence. We need love. We need food and water. We need shelter. These are the bare minimum of things that we need to have a good life. Certainly, we can exist with these items in varying measures, but they are essential to being.

To risk sounding like a scratched record and looping a bad refrain, I’m at a loss here trying to figure out how this country arrived at Donald John Trump as a solution to any problem. I’m baffled. How did we default to Trump? Rational-me understands the climate that made him possible, but — wow, what a misstep.

The budget proposals that are coming from this administration to drastically cut money for programs that the most vulnerable depend upon are draconian. They simply are not OK.

When Meals on Wheels delivers food, it is more than a hot meal being given to someone in desperate need of food: For some of these people, these deliveries are their only contact with another person. Some delivery people are the only ones who know that these folks are alive.

These meals serve 500,000 veterans yearly, and, again, the delivery people serve as an important point of contact to people who have given their lives and, for many, their sanity for a nation that repeatedly turns its back to them. For a nation that gloats about the military, we do a terrible job of caring for those veterans.

In Kentucky, between 15 and 20 percent of senior citizens struggle with food insecurity. Nationally, the number is about one in six.

I firmly believe that statistics don’t help us understand the importance of what it means to be hungry. It is cold data. It has no tears to shed and no face to be designated as the face of the hungry. It can’t speak back. Data is easy to ignore. People are not. These budget cuts will affect real people, some who you may know.

I don’t have any personal stories about starving, because I’ve never been hungry. My parents managed, even in the leanest times, to put something on the table. There were times they were scared that they wouldn’t be able to provide a meal, but they were young and healthy. They managed to scare up enough money to get something. When I was in school, there was the availability of free lunch. It wasn’t a luxury handout, and knowing that you were poor enough to qualify was a source of shame.

For that past few years, I’ve worked as a part of the Art on the Parish Green committee. The art fair raises money for a weekly soup kitchen at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in New Albany. Many of the committee members cook and serve in the kitchen.

The people who come to eat don’t always look poor. They don’t look like the families in Somalia who are starving to the point of emaciation, covered in flies and scooping rice pudding from metal bowls. The poor in America are often unseen. Perhaps our ability to hide the ugly parts of our society is one of our best Victorian holdovers. We throw shutters over the things we don’t wish to see. We hate to see poverty but we do so little to end it. Because of our aversion to, and secret affection for, our own dirty colonial past, we’ve managed to sanitize poverty.

I guess what I’m getting at is just because being poor in America comes with clothing, televisions and cheap cell phones — this doesn’t erase the devastation of being poor. Poverty isn’t fun. It isn’t iPhones and glamour. Being poor is long hours, the hardest work with the least respect. Being poor is being trapped into doing the most to be given the absolute least and then having wealthy council folk and politicians argue about whether you deserve a shade more to make life a bit easier.

To end programs such as Meals on Wheels is simply gross. The rationalizations about why it is necessary to take food from the mouths of the old, and others who are food insecure, presents a dilemma that all American communities should be united in rejecting.

I’m not going to consider why people who eat from golden plates want to take a Styrofoam box from a lonely old man. I will only consider those who will be hurt and ask that we all stand up for them.

Also posted in Opinion and Editorial, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , |

For Salvation Army’s New Frontier Chronicle: Chef Timothy Tucker

New Frontier Chronicle

Chef treats food as medicine


Culinary Arts Program teaches healing through a healthy diet.

By Erica Rucker –

Chef Timothy Tucker (c) with Chef Patricia Nesbitt, owner of Epic Gourmet Boston and a graduate of the Culinary Arts Program, and Eric Hall, life skills coach at The Salvation Army Boston Kroc Center.

Chef Timothy Tucker (c) with Chef Patricia Nesbitt, owner of Epic Gourmet Boston and a graduate of the Culinary Arts Program, and Eric Hall, life skills coach at The Salvation Army Boston Kroc Center.

Chef Timothy Tucker had a vision to help others through food.

He created a Culinary Arts Program at The Salvation Army Center of Hope in Louisville, Kentucky, in 2005, and expanded the program to the Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center in Boston in 2014.

Featured on CNN and in USA Today, the 10-week program teaches knife skills, food terminology, kitchen safety standards, recipes and teamwork. Students work with guest chefs, compete in cook-offs with classmates and prepare healthy food for community events.

Tucker’s road to the kitchen started with studying business management in his hometown of Springfield, Illinois.

“I always felt the need to get out of town,” he said. “I had every intention of going to culinary school but I was kind of biding my time.”

He eventually attended Sullivan University’s culinary arts program and worked as a private chef for the former CEO of Texas Roadhouse, GJ Hart. Tucker wanted to work in the nonprofit sector, though, and met Theodore Dues, then executive director of the Louisville Salvation Army social services.

Dues believed The Salvation Army had a duty to not only feed people but also to heal them, and that included teaching people to use food as medicine. He was looking for a chef who would improve the lives of the people who came to The Salvation Army for help and he found that person in Tucker.

“When I started, the focus was getting food of healthier quality and treating the food as medicine,” Tucker said. Whole Foods Market offered The Salvation Army large amounts of fresh and organic food. Tucker recalled getting “garbage bags full of stuff.”

He recalls the difficulty in getting clients accustomed to the fresh food.

“It was very much a struggle at the beginning,” he said. “We were able to replace doughnuts with fresh fruit and organic milk. It didn’t really go over that well. A lot of people got upset.”

But despite the resistance, Tucker used his culinary training and business management skills to create the culinary arts training program.

Former student Jackson Hodges went on to earn a full scholarship to Sullivan University, and he now runs The Salvation Army program that Tucker created.

Tucker wrote “Destination: Chef: A Culinary Training Program Guide to Becoming Food Service-Ready in Ten Weeks,” which he plans to use as a teaching manual.

Also posted in Newsletters, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , , , , , |

Kentuckiana’s five most innovative high school classes


Kentuckiana’s five most innovative high school classes

All over the country, school systems realize that students are living in a new era. This is no different in our local schools. All over the Metro, schools are changing the way students approach their studies. To meet the demands of the changing world and to prepare the next generation to take the reigns or the flight controls, these five high school courses challenge students with next level education, offering them a chance to change the narrative of education.

Biomedical Science (Mercy Academy)
“We had a course called Advanced Biology II for years and years, and it was kind of boring. But with this big STEM focus we’re really trying to bolster our science, technology and math, so we shifted that course into something called Biomedical Science,” says Mercy Academy (5801 Fegenbush Lane) faculty and Science Department Administrator Patrick Burton.

Burton took his experience from a stint in medical school and updated the advanced biology course to meet the interests of the students and demands of their potential careers.

At Mercy, an all-female Catholic school, the introduction of STEM-style courses broadens the focus from regular science to something that can be applicable in a later college or career decision.

Students in the Biomedical Science course are provided the chance to discover biology through the fields of medicine and applied technology. They are given the opportunity to explore minor diagnosis, symptomology and, in the process, gain valuable patient interaction and interview skills. Students are also taught to build medical models and develop biomaterials to mend simulated broken bones.

“I gave groups of students a patient case, and they got a patient profile and some x-rays that showed some broken bones,” says Burton. “They had to design a biomaterial that would fix that. In the end, I felt like they learned more about the structure and the surgical process than I thought they would starting out.”

Burton finds the course revitalizes the material, and the students agree. Senior Jessie Nalley says of the course, “Coming into the class I was really interested in the medical field. I’m interested right now in going into radiology. This class allows you to look at everything outside the box.”

Philanthropy (Kentucky Country Day)
Nestled on 85 acres in Northeast Louisville, students at Kentucky Country Day(KCD) (4100 Springdale Rd.) get the chance to give back to the local community. In fact, they are taught how to give back through a unique course called the Philanthropy class. Juniors and seniors are given instruction on the history of philanthropy, serve as the board of the school’s Artemis Fund, host a fundraiser, solicit, and award grants to local nonprofits. The course is an elective for juniors and seniors in regular courses but mandatory for juniors in the Honors program.

The course was the brainchild of former KCD parent, Judy Miller whose Miller Family foundation funded the original Artemis Fund with $10,000. The original endowment has grown, according to the Artemisfund.org, to more than $130,000. Each group of students enrolled in the Philanthropy class replenishes and awards new monies to grantees.

The students gain valuable insight not only into the importance of stewardship to their community, but they learn skills necessary to make their giving effective and sustainable. Past grant recipients have included Dare to Care, Americana Community Center, The Lincoln Foundation and Visually Impaired Preschool Services.  

KCD Director of Development and course instructor Gentry Easley says of the students’ experiences in the Philanthropy class, “I think it’s very eye opening to them when in a very short period of time we get upwards of 20 grant applications for a couple thousand dollars. It’s important for the students to see how much of an impact they can make with a small amount of money.”

National Air and Space Education Institute (Assumption High School)
Dr. Tim Smith, pilot, educator and founder of the Air and Space Academy, believed that helping kids apply STEM knowledge in the field of aerospace would deliver a well-trained workforce and help students discover a field they might never have considered. Assumption High School students have the exclusive opportunity to enroll in the Academy.

The program extends past Assumption High School to several high schools in Kentucky and Tennessee. Students from all of the programs get the opportunity to expand both their STEM knowledge and experience the world of aerospace. These students are in grades 9-12 and join a yearly academy-wide competition hosted in Somerset, Ky. Students can participate in flight training, design and engineering, restoration, and mechanics—all skills that will transfer to advanced aerospace learning or the workforce.

The operations base of the academy is at Bowman Field on Taylorsville Road, which is just a short drive from Assumption High School (2170 Tyler Lane)—an all-female Catholic learning environment.

Freshman, Alayna Breslin says of her experiences, “I have learned a lot about flying and engineering. I feel like it is a good program. I am really wanting to continue this program and learn as much as I can.”

The program is tough, and some of the students find learning so much new material complex but are eager to try new things. When asked what she’ll take away from her experience, Freshman Carly Crawford says, “I will remember how this has prepared me or at least exposed me to the tasks I will hopefully be performing in my future career.”

Theatre Program (Community Montessori)
“Montessori philosophy asks the adults to follow the child, wherever possible, and to nurture their independence,” says Hannegan Roseberry.

With that in mind and the knowledge that theatre exposure in children is, like many arts, key to unlocking intellectual curiosity in young people, Community Montessori’s theatre program does this a bit differently. Because of the nature of Montessori learning, this program is led by the students with guidance from Roseberry and Debi Cline both instructors at Community Montessori (4102 Saint Joseph Rd) in New Albany, Ind.

“We have learners ages 12 – 18 involved with these productions, and we rehearse a fraction of the time that you would in a traditional program; they are asked to work as independently as possible until it’s time to pull the show together as opening night approaches. This is their theatre program, and they are expected to lead onstage and off,” says Roseberry.

Community Montessori students get experience in all the areas of theatre production.  This includes the marketing, set design, lighting and costuming. Students are given the opportunity control and decide how each performance should be presented. This offers them a unique opportunity to develop a good sense of their capabilities and maturity.

“The thing about theatre is that it is full of constant surprises. It’s always interesting for me to see how shows will play out because you never really know until it’s actually happening,” says Sophomore Lily Barnett, who has participated in the program for four years, acted in five productions and been part of the technical crew in two. She has spent her life at Community and hopes to take her experiences forward.

“Something I would take with me, after leaving, would be the friends I have made and the ability to go out into the world and inspire,” she says.

Manufacturing Technology Program (Doss High School)
Preparing young workers for future careers in manufacturing is at the core of a new partnership between Jefferson County Public Schools and Lightweight Innovations for Tomorrow (LIFT), with Doss High School (7601 Saint Andrews Church Road) as its home. The Manufacturing Technology program at Doss High School is part of a regional effort to cultivate individuals in nearby communities to fill a void in the more than 32,000 skilled technician positions that have been posted.

Students in this program learn valuable skills in machining and industrial technology. They are trained in a four-course major and provided hands-on learning experiences while working with local industries such as GE Appliances, Ford-Louisville Assembly Plant and Amatrol.

Students are also given the opportunity to earn two certifications, the National Career Readiness Certification (NCRC) and the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council – Certified Production Technician (MSSC-CPT) credential. The on-the-job training and certification helps students get a leg up on entry-level manufacturing jobs.

The students are given highly desirable and employable skills that will help them as they go on to college and out into the workforce. “At JCPS our core mission is to prepare students to graduate college and career ready,” said Dr. Donna Hargens, JCPS Superintendent, in a news release. “Combining national certifications with local, work-based learning experience and regional partnerships will prepare tomorrow’s workforce for the high-skilled, high-tech lucrative manufacturing careers of the 21st century.”

From the arts to sciences and everything in between, students across our area are experiencing education in new ways. Embracing technology and deep analytical processes, these students are sure to be well prepared to meet the future needs of Louisville and our country.

Also posted in Super Quill-ian Blog, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , |

Entrepreneur starts out at Salvation Army

Entrepreneur starts out at The Salvation Army

Also posted in Interviews, Marketing/B2B, Newsletters, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , |

Menopause: A time to renew your spirit (Norton Healthcare “Get Healthy” magazine Jan-Mar 2016)

gethealthycover2016 PUB-7082 Get Healthy Jan-Mar_2016_LR 3

Also posted in Marketing/B2B, Super Quill-ian Blog, Uncategorized Tagged , , , |

A&E Guide: Artist Profile – Kevin Warth



“I’ve been reading a lot of Roland Barthes. I’m influenced by qu

His work heavily explores, through the language of portraiture, issues involving the body and “family-making.” Warth speaks with authority beyond his youth. His work is tied closely to his own experiences as a gay man in the Bible Belt where family values are on the lips of every preacher and politician. Warth examines these issues all the while intending to subvert the ideas of family and sexuality. “I see myself as a rule breaker, an academic and an activist. I strive to create meaningful sociopolitical commentary through my work and I believe one of art’s greatest strengths is the ability to create a dialogue.”

Growing up in Southern Indiana but based in Louisville, Warth became interested in photography through the influence of his father, also a photographer, and a high school media arts class. When he graduated, it seemed natural to continue at the university level, exploring his interests in both photography and ideas of the queer body in the language of the family.

His most recent body of work, “boy and his SIR: BDSM and the Queer Family,” explores these issues by placing couples or groups, often in BDSM attire, in situations akin to those of the hetero-normative idea of family. Vividly and sometimes quietly questioning what it means to be a family and how that family appears for someone exploring a varied sexuality. “I’m taking this language of family portraiture and photographing queer couples and groups. I wanted to present this alternate mode of family-making and that is reified through the photograph itself.”

Warth has participated in a few shows locally — his most recent solo effort at Gallery K & Coffeehouse on Story Avenue. “My work is more and more self-referential and talking about photography as a medium itself, challenging the way we think about that. I, of course, identify with [photographer Robert] Mapplethorpe to a degree. He paved the way in showing beautiful images of very sexual things which is something I do but in a very different way.”

Also posted in Interviews, Super Quill-ian Blog, Uncategorized Tagged , , , |

A&E Guide: Artist Profile – Scott Scarboro



Racecar driver Mario Andretti said, “Desire is the key to motivation but it’s the determination and commitment to unrelenting pursuit of your goal — a commitment to excellence — that will enable you to attain the success you seek.” Scott Scarboro, veteran local artist, finds these words helpful in keeping focused. His only lament about being an artist in Louisville is the lack of gallery spaces and web presences that patrons can readily access. “The patrons are out there; they just don’t know where to go.”

A prolific creator, Scarboro produces multimedia and kinetic artworks. “My last solo exhibition at the Green Building [Gallery] could have passed as a 4-person show. Getting older only amplifies the need to get ‘er all done.”

Scarboro mines his childhood and personal mythology for subject matter — a practice that resonates with admirers of outsider folk art and assemblage. His work calls in to question innocence and exploration, both ideas closely associated with youth. “I am drawn to images of iconic characters from my childhood as subject matter. Much like the ‘Dynamite’ magazine collages that used to grace my bedroom walls.”

Scarboro manipulates not only the materials of his youth, but teases at the commercialization and commodification of childhood through his glitch video work.  Using snippets of 1970s television programming, commercials and cartoons, he creates “short hypnotic daydreams.”

Like most artists, his process changes with new elements. Recently adding his mother’s sewing machine to his repertoire, Scarboro incorporates yet another layer of his youth into his creations. “My mother and I had many conversations at the sewing machine. That’s where I learned about the birds and the bees. It’s a natural and rich part of my life.” Sewing non-traditional materials into his work, Scarboro says almost anything can be utilized, “Taco Bell wrappers, plastic caution tape, foils, cardboard, copper, wire, movie film, chicken feed sacks, et cetera. If a needle can go through it, it is fair game.”

When not working on his own mixed media projects or encouraging his artist children, Scarboro can be found planning Good Folk Fest. This year’s Good Folk Fest will be held at the Tim Faulkner Gallery in Portland on Nov. 20-22. “I’m excited about having it at the Tim Faulkner Gallery. I want all the artists to be successful, all the musicians to have a good time and be well received, and I want everyone who walks into the door to experience something inspiring and meaningful.”


Also posted in Interviews, Super Quill-ian Blog, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , |

Norton Healthcare-“Get Healthy” Magazine Jul-Sep 2015

Page 5 Get HealthyPage 5 Get Healthy



Also posted in Interviews, Super Quill-ian Blog, Uncategorized Tagged , , , |

Norton Healthcare-“Get Healthy” Magazine Jul-Sept 2015

Page 3 Get Healthy

Page 3 Get Healthy

Also posted in Uncategorized Tagged , , , , |

Article for NAC in WEUSA

Also posted in Interviews, Marketing/B2B