Gathering family history stories is our team of writers who are devoted to creating a place for everyone to share stories about ancestors who inspire us:
Bennett Lentczner (with Thelma Salzberg Lentczner, his mother)
Linda Whitesitt, my wife, tells me I’m the best storyteller she knows. She should know. She’s been listening to my stories for almost forty years. I bet she’s heard some of my stories hundreds of times. I know that because she gets a glazed look in her eyes that says, “Not this one again!” She always lets me tell it, but lately, she’s been excusing herself to go do the dishes so I can tell it to friends without her having to hear it for the hundred-and-first time.
I have stories about everything — my years as a trumpet student at Juilliard, my experiences playing in the Catskills, teaching and directing a high school band, my career in higher education (first as a professor of trumpet and later as a dean and provost), my consulting work, my conducting gigs, my golf games (you should see her eyes when I tell these!), my volunteer work . . . Lots and lots of stories.
Stories connect us with each other. We see ourselves in the words of a friend’s story. When I’m telling a story and my wife is listening to me (she humors me more often than not), I know that my life is valued and my voice matters. That’s what I hope TreeStories does for the people who add their stories and the ones who read them — let them know that their unique, once-in-all-eternity life, has been worth the living.
And read my story about an important mentor in my life here.
Kate Green (with William “Bill” D. Bagis, her brother)
Kate Green is an eco-feminist, a GreenFaith Fellow and was a leader of EarthKeepers, an environmental ministry of Myers Park Baptist Church in Charlotte, NC. EarthKeepers helped church members understand the relationship between spirituality and ecology. As an advocate for women, children and people in poverty, Kate served in leadership positions on Boards and non-profit agencies spanning two decades. Her experience as a mediator helped her work with diverse groups of people seeking consensus. Kate also credits her professional training as a Communication expert and editor in the corporate sector as being instrumental in helping her further develop skills needed to advocate for social and environmental justice issues. Described as a poet-activist, she changed her name to”Green” 20 years ago as an important symbol of her commitment to address the critical issues facing our environment.
Read Kate’s story about her mother here.