Programs for Feb 27-Mar 30

Please make reservations at 215-732-0334 or

Steward Shefqet and Chef Tamara VanWinkle depend on day-ahead reservations in order to prepare enough food!

*  *  *  SEE ANNOUNCEMENTS, BELOW  *  *  *

February 24, Monday Quarterback Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Dick Goldberg is our Quarterback.

Menu: Butternut Squash Soup, Steak over Salad, Dessert TBD

February 27, Thursday Luncheon Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Speaker is Joseph Otis Minott, executive director and chief counsel of the Clean Air Council, on “Right to Breathe versus Dirty Energy”

Menu: Green Salad, Roast Chicken and Herb Rice, Dessert TBD

Joseph Minott has led the Clean Air Council for more than three decades, developing statewide recognition for his work on transport-related urban air pollution and environmental justice issues. He started the Council’s Indoor Air Pollution Information Center over 20 years ago and is an expert on the Clean Air Act and regulatory policies in Pennsylvania. He holds an M.A. in political science from Penn and a J.D. from Villanova and has taught courses in environmental law and policy at both Penn and Temple.

March 2, Monday Quarterback Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Tom Tropp is our Quarterback.

Menu: Tomato Soup, Mac and Cheese with Salad, Dessert TBD

March 3, Tuesday Evening Buffet, 6:00 pm

Speaker is Alex Conner, millennial artist, educator, and collector, on “Painted into a Corner—Emergent/Divergent Paths in American Art”

Menu: To come

What’s the deal with contemporary American art? It’s no longer an art world, but art planets zooming off into their own orbits. As an artist, educator, and collector, Alex looks at how art is socially constructed from its cultural context–whether in real life or in the digital realm–when makers and audiences engage as collaborators or even antagonists, or when they seem to speak an entirely different visual language. He will share his perspectives as both an artist immersed in this art multiverse and a collector who is able to step outside it.

Alex Conner holds an MFA in studio art from Moore College of Art and a post-baccalaureate certificate in fine arts from PAFA. At the Barnes Foundation, he works as a gallery educator with K-12 students, teaching them the history and cultural contexts of works in the collection and also developing interpretative approaches to focus on social inclusion, cultural awareness, and global history. He is a collector of contemporary American art and president of Philly Stewards, a membership organization founded to support artists and guide collectors. In his very busy life, he is also an entrepreneur with pivotal roles at Felt+Fat, a Philadelphia ceramic design studio that provides handmade porcelain ware to top chefs. And he plans to open his own gallery in 2021.

March 5, Thursday Luncheon Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Speaker is Beth Shalom Hessel, executive director of the Athenaeum, on “Cultivating Our Sense of Wonder at the Athenaeum: Tales of Membership Libraries”

Menu: Green Salad, Japanese Chicken Curry, Dessert TBD

What happens when you walk in the doors of the Athenaeum of Philadelphia? How do the Athenaeum and other historic membership libraries in the United States deepen the curiosity and joy of their members and guests while strengthening appreciation for our urban environment? Beth Shalom Hessel, Ph.D., will explore the history and purpose of membership libraries from their 18th-century beginnings to today, to show their contributions to the vitality of our city and its residents.

Dr. Hessel became executive director of the Athenaeum in July 2019 after serving as executive director of the Presbyterian Historical Society for four years. A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, she received her doctorate in U.S. history from Texas Christian University. Her research focuses on religion, ethnicity, and transpacific relations, particularly WWII Japanese American incarceration camps. As an ordained Presbyterian cleric and an academic, she also spent more than 20 years pastoring churches and teaching at colleges across the United States before taking on leadership roles in the nonprofit world. She is the proud parent of four.

March 9, Monday Quarterback Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Tom Ricks is our Quarterback.

Menu: Green Salad, Owen Wister’s Chili Con Carne, Dessert TBD

March 12, Thursday Luncheon Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Speaker is Innmate Margaret Chew Barringer, founder and chair of American Insight, on “Issues of Free Speech Examined Through Film”

Menu: Green Salad, Roast Chicken with Vegetable Rice, Dessert TBD

Innmate Margot Barringer, who was the Franklin Inn Club’s first woman president, has founded several high-impact nonprofits, including the American Poetry Center and American Insight.  American Insight’s mission is to promote knowledge of, and insight into, free speech, human rights, and the rule of law” by broadening exposure to the history and future of free speech through emerging technologies. The organization combines the resources of a broadcast-quality television production company with a fully integrated digital network and delivery system for multi-platform media content.  It reaches Internet audiences through the latest advances in all-digital historic archival research, video production techniques, and Internet-based delivery systems.

March 16, Monday Quarterback Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Bill Untereker is our Quarterback.

Menu: Carrot Soup, Egg/Cheese/Broccoli Casserole, Dessert TBD

March 20, Friday Club Dinner, starting at 5:30 pm

Speaker is Scott Guzielek, vice-president and general manager of the Academy of Vocal Arts, on “Training and Nurturing Voices and Singers”

Menu: Spinach Salad with Dried Cherries, Roast Turkey with Gravy, Scalloped Potatoes, French Green Beans, and Lemon Tart

[Please request Roasted Salmon entreé, if desired, when making reservations]

For the past 85 years, the AVA has consistently trained and produced some of the most successful singers in opera. Scott Guzielek will explore and explain the fundamentals of operatic singing with demonstrations by mezzo soprano Anne Marie Stanley and AVA master vocal coach Luke Housner.

March 23, Monday Quarterback Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Roberta Kangilaski is our Quarterback.

Menu: Green Salad, Mujadara (lentils and rice) with Lamb, Dessert TBD 

March 26, Thursday Luncheon Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45

Speaker is Dianne Semingson, chair of the Women 100 Advisory Committee, on “A Seat at the Table”

Menu: Green Salad, Chicken Paprikash, Dessert TBD

Dianne Semingson will highlight Philadelphia’s leading role in the 1920 passage of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which granted a select group of women the right to vote.  In 2020, Philadelphia honors the centennial of the ratification — and the future of the women’s rights movement — with special exhibitions and events. The Women 100 Advisory Committee, a citywide program featuring live and fine arts, a road rally, and a massive public toast to the suffragettes.

Ms. Semingson is a strategic marketing, communications, and business development consultant.  She serves on the boards of several corporations and nonprofit organizations, including the executive committee of the Committee of Seventy. Recognition of her business and community contributions has included the 2015 Brava! Award from SmartCEO Magazine; listing in Pennsylvania’s 50 Best Women in Business; naming as a Woman of Distinction by Philadelphia Business Journal; and the 2012 Woman One award from Drexel’s Institute for Women’s Health and Leadership. She was named a Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania in 2016 and was inducted as a Fellow of the College of Physicians in 2018.

March 30, Monday Quarterback Roundtable, 12:30 – 1:45 pm

Gresham Riley is our Quarterback.

Menu: To come

*  *  *  ANNOUNCEMENTS *  *  *

Dues payments are due by February 29

Checks are welcome, as always, but remember that you can now pay by credit card, too.

To pay by credit card, use the “Member Dues” payment portal on the Franklin Inn Club website.

April Program Highlights

April 2, Thursday Luncheon Roundtable – Joseph Otis Minott, executive director of the Clean Air Council, speaking on “Right to Breathe versus Dirty Air” (rescheduled from February 27)

April 7, Tuesday Evening Buffet – David Brooks, columnist for The New York Times, and Ann Snyder, editor-in-chief of Comment magazine, speaking on “Culture Drives Politics: How Social Forces Are Reshaping American Life” [NOTE: Advance registration required for members and partners only]

April 9,  Thursday Luncheon Roundtable – Bob Skiba, founding member of the Association of Philadelphia Tour Guides, speaking on the history of Camac Street

April 17, Friday Club Dinner – David Young, executive director of the Delaware Historical Society, speaking on “The Battles of Germantown: Effective Public History in America”


April Quarterbacks

April 6:   Palmer Hartl

April 13: Michael Brooks

April 20: Basil Talbott

April 27: Alina Macneal