ESU Colonial NC Branch Photo Gallery

ESU Colonial NC Branch Queen’s Birthday and Annual Meeting

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ESU Colonial NC Branch Queen’s Birthday and Annual Meeting

The ESU Colonial NC Branch Queen's Birthday and Annual Meeting, held on June 12th at the New Bern Golf & Country Club was a grand affair attended by 60 members and guests.  Following her welcome remarks, President Elinor Kelly recognized special guests, Dr. Julia Van de Water, Chair of the Regional Representatives of the ESU leadership in New York, and the Region 1V representative Darlene Brown, the Executive Director of Craven County Partners in Education (PIE), the fundraising organization that raises money for the Craven County School System, April King, Executive Director of the Craven Literacy Council and Charles Wethington, Director of the Community College Foundation.

The two families of the 2020 and 2021 recipients of the ESU English Second Language Merit Award, Ruay Htoo -2020, Spencer Ha were recognized. They were chosen by the teachers of the ESL program through the Craven County School System and the Branch contribution is given to PIE for this program. In addition to an annual contribution of $1,000 to PIE, each ESL student recipient receive $100 and a certificate of achievement.

Bob Husson, Chair of the Shakespeare committee, related the challenge of doing the competition virtually and other plans he has to enhance the competition in the coming year.

Susan Moffat-Thomas, Board Vice President and Chair of Program and Publicity Programs, provided an overview of the organization, her work as the program chair, to expand the diversity of programs offered and her appreciation the board chose to support her recommendation to expand the Branch's visibly and community outreach by making annual contributions to the three organizations that offer ESL programs. She extended thanks to Carolyn Peterson who will take on the responsibility of being in charge of publicity and programs for the coming year. She then called Charles Wethington, the Director of the Craven Community College Foundation and presented him with a check for $2,000 to be used for the College English Second Language program.

Lee Purcell, Membership and the Nominating Committee chair presented the proposed slate of officers and directors for the coming year. With no nominations from the floor, the members approved the slate presented and the yeas were unanimous.

Elinor recognized Susan Moffat-Thomas for her work on the board programs, publicity, updating the website, keeping it current etc. and presented her with a certificate of appreciation for her stellar work.

She then called the new slate of officers and board members to the front to be installed. Each person swore to perform their duties to the best of their ability, as defined in the Colonial NC Branch bylaws, whose duties begin effective July 1,

In tribute to Queen Elizabeth II, everyone raised their glass of champagne and toasted the Queen with wishes for a happy birthday and pieces of cake were served.

As a final note, the three judges announced the winners of the hat contest and the meeting was adjourned at 4pm.

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Ruay Htoo, Recipient of First Annual Colonial NC Branch, ESL Award of Merit

The local  Colonial NC Branch of the English Speaking Union is pleased to announce Ruay Htoo, a 5th grader at A.H. Bangert Elementary School is the recipient of their first ESL Award of Merit for his outstanding achievement of mastering English and becoming an excellent student since his family moved to New Bern as refugees from Burma in 2015.

As an advocate for local literacy programs, the Colonial NC Branch invited teachers in the Craven County Schools, English Second Language (ESL) Program, to annually select an outstanding student based on their determination and growth in becoming proficient in the English language, excelling in their studies and embracing the American culture.

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Grace Blizzard, First Place Winner in Colonial NC Branch Competition

Grace Blizzard, student of Michael McGinn and Julie Salyards, West Carteret High School, Morehead City, NC, won first place at the English-Speaking Union National Shakespeare Competition Colonial NC Branch tournament on March 7, held in the Craven Community College Orringer Auditorium. She is submitting a video of her winning performance to the ESU National Shakespeare Competition in New York City, in competition with 50 other student first-place winners from around the country, for an all-expense-paid scholarship to attend the Midsummer Conservatory at the British American Drama Academy in Oxford, England. Truu Danns student of Caroline Scales, from Early College East, in Havelock won second place. Each student performed a Shakespearean monologue of their choice and recited a sonnet. Judges for the competition, Per Erichsen, Deirdre Kiernan, and Penny Viglione, judged the students on their understanding of their selected texts and on their ability to communicate their interpretation to the audience.


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5th Annual Shakespeare Dinner
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February 2020 Program: An Unexpected Journey: 30 Years at the Central Intelligence Agency

Elinor Kelly discussed her exciting and
challenging career with the CIA.

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A great turnout for the January program.

Dr. David Skaggs presentation, George Mason: Forgotten Founding Father was outstanding. Mason, a Virginia delegate to the 1787 Constitutional Convention whose principal argument for a declaration of rights led James Madison to champion Mason's ideas, in what became the Bill of Rights.

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September 2019 Branch Contribution Supports Board of Education's English as a Second Language Program.

September 2019 Branch Contribution Supports Board of Education's English as a Second Language Program.

President Barbara Dotterer passing  Branch's check/contribution to Principal Thomas Wilson, for the Craven County Department of Education's, English as a Second Language Program.

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Christmas 2019 Luncheon
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Members Tour Dartmouth House

In August 2019, members Lee and Mary Purcell enjoyed high tea and a tour of the gardens during their visit to the ESU Commonwealth headquarters, Dartmouth House in London. 

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2019 Queen's Birthday Lunch

Catered English Tea in a historic house in New Bern. The new officers for 2019-2020.

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Shakespeare Dinner March 2019
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Nursing in Vietnam, “The Rest of the Story”

Jane Knowles, Former Army Nurse March 2018 

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2018-19 Colonial NC Branch Programs

The branch had a full program of presentations, lectures, and the 4th annual Shakespeare Dinner. Here Dr. Caroline Paul prepares for her presentation on the Bayeaux Tapestry.