David Dinkins, former St. Johns County agent, was honored in December by the Northeast Florida Elected Officials at the group’s luncheon and regional leadership awards for excellence event. The Dec. 1 gathering was held at the University of North Florida University Center, Jacksonville.
Dinkins received the Northeast Florida Regional Council Regional Leadership Award for more than 30 years as a county agricultural agent. The award noted that Dinkins has provided “educational support in subjects ranging from basic farm production to marketing to agriculture awareness and youth development.
FIRST COAST OPERA GALA
Fans of the First Coast Opera organization will gather from 6 to 8 p.m. Feb. 11 at the home of Faith Tiberio for a gala. The night features complimentary wine and heavy hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction.
Reservations closed Feb. 4.
BROWN TO BE HONORED
Nettie Ruth Brown, former home economist and acting county agent who retired as 4-H coordinator for St. Johns County, will be honored Feb. 11 at a scholarship dinner at the St. Johns County Agricultural Center. Proceeds from the event will benefit a scholarship in Brown’s name awarded at the University of Florida Gainesville.
Reservations for the Brown dinner closed Feb. 1.
FLAGLER COLLEGE SPEAKER
As part of Flagler College’s Writers-in-Residence series, author Maile Chapman will be discussing her book, “Your Presence Is Requested at Suvanto,” in the Gamache-Koger Theater on Monday, Feb. 20, at 7 p.m. Her fictional novel centers on the real and imagined experiences of women in a Finnish hospital during the 1920s.
Chapman’s book was short-listed for the Guardian First Book Award and was a finalist for the PEN Center USA Literary Award in fiction.
According to The Guardian reviewer Lucy Ellmann, “‘Your Presence Is Requested at Suvanto’ is a gem; weird, vivid and acrobatic, its intricacies are sophisticated, its stance beguiling and complex. This is a writer of real power and aplomb.”
After receiving her MFA in Fiction from Syracuse University, Chapman went on to earn her doctoral degree in English from the University if Nevada, Las Vegas. Chapman has been a fellow at the New York Public Library’s Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers as well as a Fulbright grantee to Finland. Currently, Chapman teaches in the English department and MFA program at University at Nevada, and serves as editor of Witness Magazine.
Chapman’s stories have appeared in “A Public Space,” “Dublin Review,” “Fairy Tale Review” and “GRANTA Online.”
The Flagler College Writers-in-Residence program has hosted a number of world-class novelists, short fiction writers, poets and playwrights in the 30-plus years of its existence. The program takes place during the fall and spring semesters of the academic year and is free and open to the public. On Feb. 20 at 7 p.m., Chapman’s reading will be held in the Gamache-Koger Theater, located at 50 Sevilla St. Reservations are not required. The reading will last approximately 45 minutes with a question and answer period to follow.
If you are a person with a disability and need reasonable accommodations, please contact Lynn Francisco at (904) 819-6460. Sign language interpreters are available upon request with a minimum of three days’ notice. Call (904) 826-8617 for more information.