Great Conversations

Great Conversations

Great Conversations offers an unforgettable evening of fine dining and stimulating conversation with prominent individuals from our vibrant community.

Guests had so much fun talking with the accomplished and fascinating Host Conversationalists at
last year’s Great Conversations that no one wanted to leave! This year’s distinguished hosts include
novelist Susannah Marren, Combat Paper founder and pioneer in veteran initiatives David Keefe,
as well as award-winning quilt artist Bisa Butler, among others. Be sure to mark April 21, 2016 on
your calendars now and reserve your place as soon as invitations arrive in January. Experience a
one-of-a-kind evening while helping Morris Arts continue its valuable work in the community!

Great Conversations was held Thursday, April 30, 2015.
See pictures from the event.

Mingle with the distinguished conversationalists at a cocktail reception, then enjoy in-depth discussion over dinner with one of the host conversationalists. Learn about these remarkable individuals, their work, their insights into their fields and the experiences that shaped their lives. This is an evening to exchange ideas and thoughts and savor the pleasure of a live discussion, all while supporting Morris Arts.

Learn about our 2015 Conversationalists in:
Arts, Sports, Healthcare, Science, Public Service, and Industry:


Victoria Craig
Art in the Atrium – Co-Founder
Harry Ettlinger
WW II “Monuments Man,” helped rescue art looted by Nazi regime; Wallenberg Foundation of NJ – Co-Chair
Peter Genovese
Food/features writer overseeing “Munchmobile” coverage – NJ Advance Media
Joseph M. Goryeb
Mayo Performing Arts Center – Chairman of the Board of Trustees; Champion Mortgage Company – Former Principal
Corey W. Heyer
The Bernards Inn – Executive Chef
Lori Laitman
Internationally Acclaimed American Vocal Composer
Kimberly McCreight
NY Times Bestselling Author of Reconstructing Amelia
Antoinette Montague
International Jazz & Blues Singer; “Jazz Woman”
Stephen Sichak
New Jersey Symphony Orchestra
Co-Chair, Board of Trustees; Becton, Dickinson – Senior VP, Integrated Supply Chain
Lora S. Urbanelli
Montclair Art Museum – Director
Frank Vignola
World Renowned Jazz Guitarist


Howard Cross Jr
NY Giants Former Tight End;
“This Week in Football” Analyst for YES Network
Ken Daneyko
NJ Devils Three-time Stanley Cup Champion; NJ Devils Broadcast Analyst for MSG Network
Paul H. Teti
Three-time US Olympic Rower; Normandy Real Estate Partners – Principal


Everett Cunningham
Quest Diagnostics – Senior VP, Commercial
Raymond F. Kerins Jr
Bayer Corporation – Senior VP, Communications, Government Relations and Policy
John Maki
Vicus Therapeutics – Founder, President & CEO; BioNJ Board of Trustees
Charles Mohs
Pfizer Consumer Healthcare – Chief Marketing Officer
Patrick A. Roth, MD
Hackensack University Medical Center – Chairman, Department of Neurosurgery; Author of The End of Back Pain
Kathleen T. Ruddy, MD
Breast Health & Healing Foundation – Founder & President; Breast surgeon
Eva Turbiner
Zufall Health Center – President & CEO


Robert Socolow, PhD
Princeton Environmental Institute – Director, Climate & Energy Challenge; Carbon Mitigation Initiative-Director; Princeton University – Professor Emeritus

Public Service

Phil Abramson
Morristown Town Planner; Topology NJ – Principal
Brig. Gen. Patrick W. Burden
Picatinny Arsenal – Senior Commander & Deputy Program Executive Officer Ammunition
Honorable Harriet Derman
Former NJ Judge; Assemblywoman & Chief of Staff to Governor Whitman
Lt. Col. Ingrid Parker
Picatinny Arsenal – Garrison Commander


Brian Fox
MetLife Investments – Chief Marketing Officer
Beth Kinerk
Avis Budget Group, Inc. – Senior VP, Sales for North America
Gail Mandel
Wyndham Exchange & Rentals – President & CEO
Anna Maria Tejada
Kaufman Dolowich & Voluck LLP – Partner & Director of NJ Employment & Labor Group; Hispanic National Bar Association – Regional President for NJ
Stephanie Wilkes
Mondelēz International – President, Global Gum & Candy

Event Co-chairs

Edda and James Gillen
Alan Levitan

Great Sponsors of Great Conversations

We thank the following corporate sponsors for their support of Morris Arts. Click on the sponsor’s name to link to their website.

Any questions? If you have any questions, please call Gina Moran at 973-285-5115 x13 or email her.

Read about last year’s Conversationalists.