Teaching Learning Leading K-12
Mikhal Dekel discusses her book Tehran Children: A Holocaust Odyssey - 274

Mikhal Dekel discusses her book Tehran Children: A Holocaust Odyssey - 274

December 19, 2019

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Mikhal Dekel discusses her book Tehran Children: A Holocaust Refugee Odyssey (W.W. Norton & Company, 2019). This is episode 274 of Teaching Learning Leading K12, an audio podcast for educators.

Mikhal Dekel was born in Haifa, Israel, to a Holocaust refugee father and an Israeli-born mother. Over the course of seven intense years, she completed her mandatory military service, earned an L.L.B. from Tel Aviv University’s Buchmann School of Law, interned at the Tel Aviv State Attorney’s Office and joined the Israel Bar Association, before deciding to take a complete break.

In New York, where Mikhal traveled to regroup, she worked odd jobs, sat for hours at the MOMA (Museum of Modern Art) before Manet’s Water Lilies, and eventually began a graduate program in English at the City College of New York and then a Doctoral program at Columbia University.

She now lives in Manhattan with her family, teaches English and Comparative Literature at the City College and the CUNY Graduate Center, and directs CCNY’s Rifkind Center for the Humanities and Arts.

Tehran Children: A Holocaust Refugee Odyssey (2019) is the culmination of Mikhal’s decade-long journey to understand her father and the odyssey at the core of his young adulthood—an experience which he never talked about, though it informed every aspect of his being.

His wartime odyssey was also part of a larger chapter in the history of World War II, that of refugees in Central Asia and the Middle East. The fact that most Polish Jews who survived the war had followed this path was virtually unknown at the time when she began writing.

At CCNY, Mikhal teaches courses on Literature and Theory of Migrations; the Historical Memoir; Representations of Trauma; Law and Literature, and other topics.

Mikhal also directs the Rifkind Center for the Humanities and Arts at CCNY, which under her leadership has supported faculty research, awarded fellowships and hosted talks, conferences and interdisciplinary seminars that seek to broaden the academic conversation.

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Length - 35:55

Dr. Brian P. Simon: The Real Estate Journey - 273

Dr. Brian P. Simon: The Real Estate Journey - 273

December 13, 2019

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Dr. Brian P. Simon is a serial entrepreneur, specializing in real estate marketing, advertising, land acquisition, new construction, and mortgage advisory.

He is also the author of a new book,
The Real Estate Journey: From Dreaming and Home Buying to Realty and Entrepreneurship. (Morgan James Publishing, October 15, 2019).

Dr. Simon, who also owns a title company, Lender’s Title, a full-service branding studio, Simon Studios, a real estate firm, Fit Realty, and a home-building company, Custom Homes of Virginia, now helps others embrace the entrepreneurial spirit and shows them how to be successful at whatever passion they pursue.

His business leadership and communication skills were honed while serving as the academic dean at Tidewater Bible College, an adjunct professor at Regent University School of Divinity, and as an ordained minister.

He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Fairmont State University, majoring in business management. His Master of Arts in church history and doctrine was earned at Regent University. His doctorate in ministry with an emphasis on leadership training was earned at Regent University, as well.

He resides in Suffolk, Virginia with his family. He enjoys fishing with his son, hunting, and lock-down Netflix binges with his wife. He also thoroughly enjoys staying current on the latest technology.

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Length - 45:52

Lorenzo Gomez III - Tafolla Toro: Three Years of Fear -272

Lorenzo Gomez III - Tafolla Toro: Three Years of Fear -272

December 7, 2019

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In his new book, Tafolla Toro: Three Years of Fear (2019), Lorenzo Gomez III reaches back in time to share stories of his turbulent, traumatic, and often violent middle school years in one of San Antonio’s most crime-riddled neighborhoods. This is episode 272 of Teaching Learning Leading K12, an audio podcast.

Lorenzo opens up to reveal the fear, anxiety, and hopelessness he felt as a teenager and how those forces shaped his life until he began taking steps as an adult to improve his mental health.

Alternating between shocking stories from his youth and letters written to his 12-year-old self, Lorenzo shows young people how to retake the battle of their mind by dealing with what is true and dismantling the lies that lead to self-deception. In Lorenzo’s journey, readers will see someone who understands what they feel, knows what they’re going through, and is standing up to tell them: Decide today that you are worthy.

Lorenzo Gomez III overcame his mental health obstacles to become a proud participant in the transformation of the city he loves—San Antonio.

He’s the chairman of Geekdom, Texas’s largest coworking space, the co-founder of the 80/20 Foundation and Tech Bloc, and has served on the board of several non-profits, including SA2020 and City Education Partners. 

Lorenzo is also the author of The Cilantro Diaries, which quickly became a bestseller (and required reading at Texas A&M) when it was published in 2017. 

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Amazon link for Tafolla Toro





@LGomez123 (Twitter)

LGomez123 (Instagram)


Length - 54:42

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