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Speaker Nights is our foundational series, held 5 times throughout the membership season (Oct., Nov., Mar., Apr., May) at the Carroll Center for the Blind in Newton, the 1st Monday of the month, 7-9:00 p.m. The Forum provides a delicious meal, wine and other beverages, followed by a 45-minute speaker - all complimentary for Forum members. See below for the Speakers planned this current season.

We welcome non-members to attend for $35 per evening. Guests who join during the month they attended the Speaker event can apply the $35 fee toward the $165 annual membership dues. Our Forum Season runs from Oct. 1 to Sep 30. 

New members who join NWF starting April 1, 2024 for $165 get an extended membership that includes the rest of this 2023-2024 season and continues through the full 2024-2025 NWF season (Oct. 1, 2024 to Sep. 30, 2025). This is a great value and a terrific way to join our community and enjoy the bonus benefits of this longer membership.

Please join us as a guest! Simply RSVP to newtonwomensforum@gmail.com by the Sunday before the Speaker event. We look forward to meeting you!

2023-2024 Speakers: Contact!

  October 2, 2023

Blind and Low Vision Communication

David Kingsbury works as an assistive technology instructor at the Carroll Center for the Blind. He is the president of the Bay State Council of the Blind, an organization that advocates for the community's interests. Prior to becoming blind in 2004, David worked in international development as an agricultural economist and for the United Nations. He also served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Senegal and Chad.

November 6, 2023


Cheryl Hamilton is Founder and Executive Director of Stellar Story Company. She has devoted her career to advancing more inclusive communities and storytelling, from her first job managing the unexpected migration of 2,500 Somali migrants to her hometown in Maine to her current role directing curation and coaching for Stories from the Stage. She was the national coordinator for RefugeeWorks where she advised companies on how to welcome immigrants into their workforces. She is also the creator and director of Suitcase Stories, a program that features stories of refugee and immigrant life. In addition to the trainings and events she leads for institutions, Cheryl has coached over 1000 people from 80 countries to tell their stories. Her personal stories have been featured on national podcasts, and she routinely performs on stages throughout the U.S.

March 4, 2024

Astronomer Here

Yvette Cendes is a postdoc at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and was inspired to pursue astronomy by the Ellie Arroway character in Carl Sagan's sci-fi novel CONTACT. Her main area of research is supernovae. Yvette has written for several publications, including Astronomy, Discover, and Scientific American and is currently the astronomy consultant for Guinness World Records. she is also known by many as /u/Andromeda321 on Reddit where her "astronomer here!" comments are ready by millions around the world.

April 1, 2024

Indian Matchmaking

Radha Patel is the founder of Single to Shaadi. She lives in Dallas and has been married for 14 years, with two kids and their family dog. Never having used dating apps, she was surprised to hear from friends and family how they were just not working. People wanted to get married, but the current climate of “swiping” is actually hindering people from finding real relationships. Radha’s approach is to serve as an extension of a client's “friend group” to make more meaningful introductions. Previously, she lived in Chicago and Maryland, working in the hospitality industry, a training ground for managing relationships.

May 6, 2024

Leadership and Letters

Shannon A. Mullen is the author of In Other Words Leadership: How a Young Mother's Weekly Letters to Her Governor Helped Both Women Brave the First Pandemic Year. She is a journalist, screenwriter, playwright, podcast host, and film producer, who has been telling stories in one form or another since childhood. She grew up in the White Mountains of New Hampshire and has spent more than two decades contributing to national programs on public radio, including Marketplace, Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Weekend Edition, and print reporting for The New Yorker, Boston Magazine, and The Boston Globe, among others. She is currently developing multiple projects for the stage and screen.

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