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College Hosts Human Library September 19th

Central Missouri Community Action (CMCA) is partnering with State Technical College of Missouri (STC) to bring The Human Library to Osage County on September 19 from 2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. in the STC Library. 

The Human Library, an idea designed to engage diverse audiences, promote dialogue and encourage learning in new creative ways is being offered for the first time at the STC Library.  The Human Library gives patrons the opportunity to “borrow” one of up to 15 “human books” for a brief, 20 minute, one-on-one conversation.

The Human Library is a pilot program that supports CMCA's overall strategic commitments of building relationships across class and race lines as well as supporting STC’s commitment to embracing diversity at the college level.

“We are hoping that students and residents alike will take advantage of this opportunity to access information, people, culture and experiences in such an innovative way,” said Fran Stumpf, Director of Library Services, STC.

“Sitting down with someone and engaging in a one-on-one dialog is a great way to break down barriers and get to the truth of the matter,” said Martha Ray, Community Services Specialist at CMCA.  “I believe everyone that participates will come away glad that they did.”

Students and residents can place a hold on a must-read human book online through the college library website or in person at the campus library.  Space is limited so participants are encouraged to place a hold on their favorite human book in advance.  Time slots may also be available the day of the event.

Below is a list of the human books available at STC Campus Library:

STC Human Library Books

Ralph Voss, Retired Judge and Grass Farmer; Ralph spent 23 years on the bench, sentencing those convicted to anywhere between 1 and 105 years.  Ralph has spent over 10 years perfecting the art and science of grass farming. Ralph raises South Poll cattle and can talk in depth about any of those fields. Ralph plays in cow poop on a daily basis and will be happy to tell you why.

Mike Kehoe, Senator; Senator Kehoe, the youngest of six children was raised by a single mother, and struggled to get by.  The Senator led and grew an emerging local business before selling it to the employees and then moved on to establish a nationally recognized automotive dealership. The Senator can tell you about the struggles he and his family faced growing up and how he managed to end up representing the people of Osage County in the State of Missouri.

Tricia Orscheln, Survivor;  Tricia faced what most will not, the devastating diagnosis of her husband’s traumatic brain injury, Tricia will share her story of loss, hope, sheer will and determination and how her faith, her love and laughter got her through.

Hilly & Hart (KAT Radio team) Morning Radio Team; Waking up Mid Missouri each morning with music, conversation and entertainment, Hilly and Hart will be on hand to share their combined on air experience of nearly 40 years!  They will share their love of radio, the personalities they have met and what makes them get up long before the break of dawn on a daily basis to greet their listeners. 

Lucy Brenner, Former Nun; Lucy has had a varied life of commitments, to the church, her husband, a child, a university, a farm and her community. Lucy will be very open about her life choices and her end of life choices. 

Donna Zeilmann, Red Cross Volunteer; Donna has volunteered for the Red Cross for almost 20 years.  During that time she assisted disaster efforts in Louisiana after Katrina, flooding here in Missouri, wildfires, various tornadoes and culminating in the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York.  Donna spent 8 months in New York after the attacks and can share with the reader what the aftermath of that attack was from her perspective. 

Sameera Brickey & Kathy Saleh, Muslim Immigrants and Convert;  Sameera and Kathy are both of the Muslim religion, Sameera was born in Jordan and relocated to the United States; Kathy was born in the United States and converted to Islam after years of research and investigation.  Both Sameera and Kathy openly practice the Muslim faith here in Missouri and have experienced both acceptance and prejudice here in the community.  They are both open to any and all questions about their faith, their homeland and why they chose the path they have.  

Dick Preston, On Air Newscaster; Dick has been on air for over 45 years.  Dick has had 11 co-anchors and 10 news directors.  Dick has been on air through some of our nation’s most trying times, and can speak to the reader about the behind the scenes stories as well as highlights of his most incredible interviews.  Ask Dick about his unsurpassed collection of Frank Sinatra recordings!

Greg Hronick, Firearms/self-defense Expert; Greg, in addition to his current role as a trainer and instructor for the Missouri Department of Corrections has been a bodyguard, a bouncer and a martial arts competitor, ask him about the 300 concerts that he worked at as a private bodyguard.  Greg also helped to establish the Osage County Drug Court Program and worked with gang offenders, sex offenders and dangerous felons.  Ask him anything.  But if you ask him … Chuck Norris or Bruce Lee?  The answer would be… Chuck Norris wins every time.

Cathy McCuskey, Caregiver; “Your daughter is just delayed they said…” The words no mother wants to hear.  But what every mother needs to have is a diagnosis.  What was her greatest fear? What would yours be? Ask her about her daily grind… what does a family look like when they have a child that progresses normally and one that doesn’t? What is in her future?  And how will she cope? Talk to Cathy about unconditional love and how you get through tough times.

Tom Loehner, State Representative; After spending 8 years in the State House of Representatives, ask Rep. Loehner what he has learned.  What is his advice? How did he end up there with only a high school diploma? Starting out by volunteering to run for a local school board, Rep. Loehner had no idea it would lead to the state capital.  Hear his story directly from him.

Neal Johnson, Editor/Author; Neal didn’t go to college, but has excelled in the business of journalism; he is an editor, a published author and a photographer.  Neal has worked since he was 13, contributing to his families support and his own… ask Neal what his best and worst jobs were… but if you want to get him going… ask him what it’s like to merge two households… one long distance relationship and today two families make one. 

Jim Brandon, NHRA Racer, Instructor; For Jimmy, life never turns out like you think it will... he admits he’s addicted to adventure, doing it, dreaming it and living it.  He builds, races and restores cars, and when he needs to get off the track… he sails.  Ask him why he does it, and why he can’t quit now!

Chelle Hentges, From Addiction and Abuse to Redemption; Chelle has had a troubled past, going from one abusive relationship to the next, dealing with addiction and abortion, a college dropout, subsisting on ‘welfare’ and two children to support.  Ask Chelle how she got out of this mess… how she ended up with a master’s degree, a job, a husband and a happy ending. Be careful… she’ll tell you the truth.

Dylan Hentges, Physically Disabled; When Dylan was just 18 years old, a recent grad and military recruit, his life took a radical turn.  In medical terms, a T10-T11 Compression.  While Dylan’s body is still confined to a wheelchair after seven years, his ‘can do’ spirit is not.  Dylan kayaks, he swims, he hunts he still tries to live on the ‘hairy’ edge as he puts it.  Reserve Dylan and learn what you don’t know about being wheelchair bound.  And why you might be surprised that Dylan is paralyzed.

CMCA serves eight counties in Central Missouri including Audrain, Boone, Callaway, Cole, Cooper, Howard, Moniteau, and Osage.  CMCA empowers individuals and families to achieve self-reliance through a multi-faceted approach that follows the continuum of human development by engaging the community to assure that all people's basic needs are met, ensuring that there are opportunities for lifelong learning, that personal and community assets are plentiful, and that relationships exist across race and class lines. For more information about CMC, visit

With more than 35 programs, State Technical College of Missouri is Missouri’s only public two-year technical college with a statewide mission.   STC prepares students for profitable employment and a life of learning.  STC has three locations in Linn, Mexico and Jefferson City.  

This program is funded with federal funds received from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Community Services Block Grant, as provided by the Missouri Department of Social Services, Family Support Division.

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