Sandi Page

By Sandi Page, guest blogger, LLS student and volunteer, LLS Marketing Committee member


Whenever the credits roll at the end of a film, I am always amazed at the sheer number of people necessary to create the final product. Such is also the case with the lively, diverse and intellectually stimulating programs offered here at LLS. In previous posts, we’ve examined the roles that our wonderful volunteers play here at LLS and have highlighted some of our many inspiring Professors. This week, we’re putting the spotlight on our talented LLS staff. So that you can get to know them better, each staff member has provided an answer to the question “What you may not know about me is…………” To get the ball rolling, what you may not know about me is that I love to read English translations of Romance language poems. I then read the poem in its original language (a challenge as it is only French that I speak fluently) to compare the Latin-based words to their French counterparts and then compare the differences in sentence structure between the three languages. A strange hobby, to be sure, so you will not be surprised to learn that I also loved diagramming sentences as a child! Oh, and another thing you may not know about me is that I had to wear an eye patch my entire year of kindergarten. I looked like a little blond pirate. Arrrggghhh, Matey!

Now, prepare to be surprised and delighted by how our staff members finished the challenge sentence:



Josette Valenza

Josette Valenza – Director

I have a 21-year-old stepdaughter that just got accepted into the Scripps Ph.D. program. I am so proud!






Kami Barrett-Batchelder

Kami Barrett Batchelder – Associate Director

My first job coming out of grad school was for American Media, Inc. which owns and operates the leading celebrity and health & fitness media brands in the country. I am also a runner and love to participate in half marathons and marathons. I completed the New York City Marathon in 2010.





Kristen Robbins

Kristen Robbins – Assistant Director

I was a red belt in karate. A red belt signifies the ninth degree rank where the tenth degree is the highest attainable. As a child, martial arts taught me self-respect, confidence and conflict resolution.






Donna Eberle

Donna Eberle – Senior Administrative Assistant

I have 5 awesome grandchildren whom I absolutely adore.






Kimberly Bowman

Kimberly Bowman – Coordinator of Academic Programs

Given 20 attempts to shoot a basketball through a hoop, I would most likely “knock it down” just one single time – on a good day. However, given a brush, pastels, and a sketchbook or even sugar, cream, and flour – I could whip up 20 fabulously creative basketball renditions, in what I’d consider my type of slam dunk. I enjoy the creative process in just about any form.





Suzanna Wells

Suzanna Wells – Program Assistant

Hi, I’m Suzanna Wells, known around here as Suzie. I started at LLS in July 2014 as Program Assistant, having come from managing a very busy IT helpdesk in the heart of London. My husband, who works for an English publishing company, was relocated to their Boca office in 2011 and I followed him in 2012. What you may not know about me is that when I found out I was pregnant with identical twins in 1992, I thought it would be fun to become a magician, so I could make one child disappear and then reappear from elsewhere in the room! I never did do that trick, but I did complete a magic course in London and became a Children’s Magician for several years when my daughters were young. I went by the name “Dolly Daisy.”



Wendi Geller

Wendi Geller – Class Coordinator

My favorite activity in the world is going to rock concerts!






Emily Morton

Emily Morton – Class Coordinator

I am very passionate about martial arts and practiced Tae Kwon Do for a majority of my upbringing. I currently hold a red belt (second degree), my mother has her black belt (first degree), and my brother has earned his black belt (third degree).





Judi Ross

Judi Ross – Class Coordinator

In November 1963, I was on staff at Harvard University as Head of Housing when President Kennedy was shot. He and his Cabinet were celebrated graduates of Harvard and at this horrifying event, the school and its environs closed up like a tomb. Every door, window and entry way was draped in black. No-one spoke on campus. The sadness was pervasive, paralyzing and incomprehensible. Our world and time had ceased.





Justin Beyer

Justin Beyer – Audio/Visual Specialist

I am a native Floridian and while I love this state, my passion is traveling. I have traveled to over 20 countries around the world and plan on seeing many more.






Ralph Duckett

Ralph Duckett – Audio/Visual Technician

I played and captained championship Senior USTA tennis teams for 11 years. We went to State competition all eleven years and National competition three of those years.

I also have a sand collection from all over the world.





Mahmoud Kassassir

Mahmoud Kassassir – Computer Support Analyst

I was born in Kuwait and lived there through the early parts of the Iraqi invasion in 1990.






Stephanie Rosner

Stephanie Rosner – Office Manager

I have a CAM (Community Association Management) license from the State of Florida. I was a Community Association Manager for a number of years and changed careers to be the Office Manager at LLS. I just love my job!!!






Mary Ellen Bernstein

Mary Ellen Bernstein – Receptionist

Like so many others here, I am a transplant. Until 1986, my home was in Blue Bell, Pa.

I have been a receptionist at Lifelong Learning for 6 years. It is impossible to consider my position as “work.”  How fortunate I am to meet people from all over the world and assist them in selecting lectures or courses to meet their varied interests. We at the Front Desk do our very best to make the signing-in process very easy and also to solve any problems our students may have. We certainly hope we have succeeded.




Evelyn Reintanz

Evelyn Reintanz – Receptionist

After retiring twice – once from teaching and the second time from being an Administrative Assistant – I decided to come back to work part-time and, as a result, have spent the last ten years happily working at the Front Desk. I enjoy meeting the students and attending some of the classes.








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3 comments on “GETTING TO KNOW YOU……….
  1. Ginny Higgins says:

    Wow! Love your comments. Congratulations to all of you on your amazing accomplishments and interesting stories. Can’t wait to see you all in person now so we can discuss them more! Martial arts – who knew we had such talent!!!!
    LLS never ceases to surprise me. Go staff!

  2. Gene Monahan says:

    This is a great blog entry. Now I feel like I know the staff at LLS much better. Great job Sandi!

  3. Rene Friedman says:

    Sandi I love the blogs. So thrilled you did this one on staff. I learned a few things too and they all deserve a lot of recognition Great job! Thanks