Upcoming Events: San Francisco

Mon 11/23

Andrea Ponsi: San Francisco Through the Eyes of an Italian Architect

Andrea Ponsi: San Francisco Through the Eyes of an Italian Architect

Date: Mon, November 23, 2015
Time: 6:30 PM
Often described as the most European of American cities

Andrea Ponsi, Architect; Author, San Francisco: A Map Of Perceptions

Florence native Andrea Ponsi shares his unique vision of San Francisco, the city often described as the most European of American cities. An award-winning architect, designer and artist who has lived and worked in San Francisco for 10 years, Ponsi takes us on a personal exploration of San Francisco that is at once visual, literary, poetic and historical, with illustrations informed by the architect's Renaissance sensibility and passion for urban design.

Join us for a program with the man San Francisco Chronicle art critic Kenneth Baker called “an impassioned but critical admirer, aware of what he sees on more levels than most.”

Tue 11/24

Image - Eight Elements to Transform Your Personal Brand, Career and Life

Eight Elements to Transform Your Personal Brand, Career and Life

Date: Tue, November 24, 2015
Time: 6:00 PM

Ellen Looyen, Author, Branded for Life!; Branding Commentator, CBS News, The Wall Street Journal and KGO Radio

You already have a Personal Brand, whether you know it or not! Personal Branding is important for anyone who wants to move ahead in their career, climb the corporate ladder or attract new clients. Called “America’s leader in personal branding” by the NYC Conference Board, Looyen wants to help you redefine your personal brand, enhance your visibility and put you in a whole new league.

Mon 11/30

Explore the World from The Commonwealth Club

Date: Mon, November 30, 2015
Time: 5:15 PM
A one-hour planning meeting.

All interested Club members are welcome to attend our bimonthly, one-hour planning meetings of the International Relations Member-Led Forum. We focus on Europe, Latin America, Africa and worldwide topics. Join us to discuss current international issues and plan programs for early 2016.

Middle East Discussion Group

Date: Mon, November 30, 2015
Time: 5:30 PM

Make your voice heard in an enriching, provocative and fun discussion with Club members as you weigh in on events shaping the face of the Middle East, North Africa and Afghanistan. Each month, the Middle East Member-Led Forum hosts an informal roundtable discussion on a topic frequently suggested by recent headlines. After a brief introduction, the floor will be open for discussion. All interested members are encouraged to attend. There will also be a brief planning session.

Image - Week to Week Political Roundtable and Member Social

Week to Week Political Roundtable and Member Social 11/30/15

Date: Mon, November 30, 2015
Time: 6:30 PM
Lively, intelligent, and fun political discussion

Panelists TBA

The year&;s almost over; one big election is behind us, but 2016 is racing toward us at top speed.

Join us as we explore the biggest, most controversial, and sometimes the surprising political issues with expert commentary by panelists who are smart, are civil, and have a good sense of humor. Join our panelists for informative and engaging commentary on political and other major news, audience discussion of the week’s events, and our live news quiz!

And come early before the program to meet other smart and engaged individuals and discuss the news over snacks and wine at our member social (open to all attendees).

Tue 12/1

Image - Nob Hill Walking Tour

Nob Hill Walking Tour

Date: Tue, December 01, 2015
Time: 1:45 PM
A neighborhood adventure with Rick Evans

Explore one of San Francisco’s 44 hills, and one of its original “Seven Hills”. Because of great views and its central position, Nob Hill became an exclusive enclave of the rich and famous on the west coast who built large mansions in the neighborhood. This included prominent tycoons such as Leland Stanford, and other members of the Big Four. Highlights include the history of four landmark hotels: The Fairmont, Mark Hopkins, Stanford Court, and Huntington Hotel. Visit the city’s largest house of worship, Grace Cathedral, and discover architectural tidbits and anecdotes about the railroad barons and silver kings. A true San Francisco experience of elegance, urbanity, scandals and fabulous views.

Pope Francis: Climate Change and the Poor

Date: Tue, December 01, 2015
Time: 6:00 PM
The moral dimensions of climate change

Kenneth Weare, Ph.D, Adjunct Professor of Social Ethics, University of San Francisco; Board Member, San Francisco Archdiocesan Board of Education; Former Director, School of Pastoral Leadership, Archdiocese of San Francisco; Board Member, Catholic Charities CYO Board of Directors; Pastor, St. Rita Catholic Church

Weare will discuss Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home, which offers a moral argument on climate change that also includes a profound concern for the poor as a teaching on both global warming and global poverty. He describes Pope Francis’ focus on the moral dimensions of climate change in addition to the contributions from scientific researchers and environmental experts worldwide over the years.

Weare’s lecture will highlight the key elements of his moral analysis and evaluation, including creation theology, integral ecology and the socio-political and economic realities constituent to the challenge of climate change.

Wed 12/2

Image - What You Need to Know Before You're 65: A Medicare Primer

What You Need to Know Before You're 65: A Medicare Primer

Date: Wed, December 02, 2015
Time: 5:15 PM
Wirth gerontologist Esther Koch

Esther Koch, MBA, Gerontologist; Founder, Encore Management; Aging Network Partner, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid

If you are approaching the Medicare qualifying age of 65 and Medicare seems like one big alphabetical maze to you, you are not alone. Come hear what every boomer needs to know before they turn 65 to successfully navigate Medicare. Learn the ABCD’s of Medicare, the realities of what you can expect (and what not to expect) and what options might be best for you.

Thu 12/3

Image - P.J. O'Rourke

P.J. O'Rourke

Date: Thu, December 03, 2015
Time: 6:30 PM
Entertaining and provoking political satire!

P.J. O’Rourke, H.L. Mencken Research Fellow, Cato Institute; Author, Thrown Under the Omnibus

P. J. O’Rourke has had a prolific career as one of America’s most celebrated humorists. From his early pieces for the National Lampoon, through his classic reporting as Rolling Stone’s International Affairs editor in the ’80s and ’90s, and his witty political satire, P.J. has been entertaining and provoking readers for years.

Tue 12/8

Image - Perception and Deception: Understanding Misunderstandings Across Culture

Perception and Deception: Understanding Misunderstandings Across Cultures

Date: Tue, December 08, 2015
Time: 6:00 PM

Joe Lurie, Executive Director Emeritus, International House, UC Berkeley

Inspired by a West African proverb that says, “The stranger sees only what he knows,” Lurie shares a feast of cross-cultural stories and misadventures, exploring the deeper cultural messages that escape people who hear largely what they’re used to hearing and see mostly what they’re used to seeing. Gleaned from his years of research, travel and managing Berkeley’s International House, Lurie’s cross-cultural experiences reveal how perceptions and cultural filters affect the way people understand others. One reviewer of Lurie’s book observed, “Already I can hear the reader calling out to a friend across the room, ‘Wait, you’ve got to hear this!’”

Image - David Gregory

David Gregory

Date: Tue, December 08, 2015
Time: 6:30 PM
Who do we want to be and what do we believe?

David Gregory, Former Moderator, NBC’s “Meet the Press”; Author, How’s Your Faith?: An Unlikely Spiritual Journey

In conversation with Rev. Alan Jones, Dean Emeritus, Grace Cathedral; Twitter

Join Gregory as he probes various religious traditions to better understand his own faith and answer some of life’s important questions: Who do we want to be and what do we believe? David’s journey has taken him inside Christian mega-churches and into the heart of Orthodox Judaism. He’s gone deep into Bible study and asked tough questions of America’s most thoughtful religious leaders. David approaches his faith with the curiosity and dedication you would expect from a journalist accustomed to holding politicians and presidents accountable.

Mon 12/14

Image - Nimat Hafez Barazangi

Women’s Identity and Rethinking the Hadith

Date: Mon, December 14, 2015
Time: 12:00 PM
Uncovering unjust practices

Nimat Hafez Barazangi, Visiting Fellow, Cornell University

Barazangi will discuss her work in Muslim and Arab women's education, identity development and belief studies as well as feminist and gender issues. She will sign her newest book, Woman’s Identity and Rethinking the Hadith. She describes this book as a first step in a comprehensive attempt to contrast Hadith with the Qur'an to uncover unjust practices concerning women and gender issues.

Image - Week to Week Political Roundtable and Holiday Social 12/14/15

Week to Week Political Roundtable and Holiday Social 12/14/15

Date: Mon, December 14, 2015
Time: 6:30 PM
Our special year-end political wrap-up!

Panelists TBA

It&;s our annual holiday special social hour followed by a special year-end edition of our popular Week to Week political roundtable. We&;ll discuss the biggest (and some of the oddest) political news of the day with intelligence and wit, and you&;ll get to meet other interested and interesting people.

Tue 12/15

Image - San Francisco Architecture Walking Tour

San Francisco Architecture Walking Tour

Date: Tue, December 15, 2015
Time: 1:45 PM
A neighborhood adventure with Rick Evans

Explore San Francisco’s Financial District with historian Rick Evans and learn the history and stories behind some of our city’s remarkable structures, streets, and public squares. Hear about the famous architects that influenced the building of San Francisco after the 1906 Earthquake. Discover hard-to-find rooftop gardens, Art Deco lobbies, unique open spaces, and historic landmarks. This is a tour for locals, with hidden gems you can only find on foot!

Image - Dr. Chris Field: The Stephen Schneider Award

Dr. Chris Field: The Stephen Schneider Award

Date: Tue, December 15, 2015
Time: 6:30 PM

Chris Field, Director, Department of Global Ecology, Carnegie Institution for Science

The award is underwritten by Tom R. Burns, Nora Machado, and Michael Haas.

Climate One at The Commonwealth Club will award Dr. Chris Field the fifth annual Stephen H. Schneider Award for Outstanding Climate Science Communication. Dr. Field is director of the Department of Global Ecology at Stanford University’s Carnegie Institution for Science. The $15,000 award is given to a natural or social scientist who has made extraordinary scientific contributions and communicated that knowledge to a broad public in a clear and compelling fashion. The award was established in honor of Stephen Henry Schneider, one of the founding fathers of climatology, who died in 2010.

Mon 12/21

Image - Socrates Café

Socrates Café

Date: Mon, December 21, 2015
Time: 6:30 PM
Discussion of philosophical issues.

On one Monday evening of every month the Humanities Forum sponsors Socrates Café at The Commonwealth Club. Each meeting is devoted to the discussion of a philosophical topic chosen at that meeting. The group's facilitator, John Nyquist, invites participants to suggest topics, which are then voted on. The person who proposed the most popular topic is asked to briefly explain why she or he considers that topic interesting and important. An open discussion follows, and the meeting ends with a summary of the various perspectives participants expressed. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Mon 1/11

Image - Values that Guide Healthcare Decisions

Values that Guide Healthcare Decisions

Date: Mon, January 11, 2016
Time: 6:00 PM
A critical component of end-of-life choices

Mileva Saulo Lewis, Ed.D., RN, Associate Professor, Samuel Merritt University; Vice President, The Center for Medical Ethics and Mediation

The values that guide our medical treatment decisions become increasingly important when we face the sudden onset of a stroke or heart attack and become even more critical when we cannot speak for ourselves after serious trauma from a car accident or fall. Dr. Lewis' presentation draws on a values history approach developed at The Center for Medical Ethics and Mediation in San Diego, which examines the decision-making process and quality-of-life factors. It provides a way to shape and share health-care decisions with family and health-care providers, and to review or revise them as your health changes. It is a critical component of end-of-life choices.