History as It Happens: Contributors part I

History as It Happens: Community Bloggers in Lowell, Mass. contains 500 pages of community writing by 40 contributors who cover politics, history, culture, economics and business, education, the environment, crime, urban planning, family, philanthropy, the law, health care, folklife, war and terrorism, media old and new, preservation, religion, sports, social issues, and more from Lowell and beyond. Each article in this book first appeared on this website during its first ten years of existence (2007-2016).

History as It Happens will be released at a book launch event on Saturday, August 5, 2017, from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm at Lowell Telecommunications Corporation at 246 Market Street. Thereafter, the book will be available locally and online.

Each week between now and the launch of the book, I will do blog posts identifying the contributors and their works contained in the book. Here is the first installment:

History as It Happens: Contributors part I

Anthony Accardi, adjunct professor of English at Middlesex Community College, is the former assistant Register of Deeds at the Middlesex North Registry of Deeds in Mass. Tony’s contributions include Obamamania in Nashua, a 2008 account of a Barrack Obama rally; Ed McMahon, WLLH, and Paul Sullivan, about a visit by Lowell-native Ed McMahon to WLLH, and several others.

Mehmed Ali is the author of The Search for a Master’s Legacy: Yousuf Karsh & John Garo. An administrator at UMass Lowell, he is also the first official City Historian for the City of Lowell. He contributed Moody Gardens (co-authored with Beth Brassel), a story about a 1950s gay and lesbian bar in Lowell.

Marjorie Arons-Barron is president of Barron Associates Worldwide, Inc. a consulting firm specializing in communications. She is the former editorial director at WCVB-TV, Channel 5, in Boston. Marjorie contributed Market Basket Deal: Time to Celebrate, a story about the resolution of the 2014 dispute over ownership of the Market Basket grocery store chain.

Colleen Brady is a government- and community-relations associate at UMass Lowell. She holds a master’s degree from UMass Lowell and a law degree from Massachusetts School of Law. Colleen contributed Remarks at Lowell Plan Breakfast, co-authored with Francey Slater), an account of the lessons they learned from the Public Matters leadership development program.

Beth Brassel is a librarian for Young Audlt books and readers at the Pollard Memorial Library in Lowell. She has a master’s degree from the State University of New York, Buffalo, in American Studies with a concentration in Women’s Studies, as well as a master’s in Library Science (Simmons College, Boston). Beth contributed Moody Gardens (co-authored with Mehmed Ali), a story about a 1950s gay and lesbian bar in Lowell.

Michael Casey is the author New and Selected Poems, Obscenities (Yale Series of Younger Poets award), Millrat, and Million Dollar Hole. His poems have appeared in The Nation, Rolling Stone, and The New York Times and other publications. Mike contributed two poems, Coffee Truck and  Blue Dot Sign.

George Chigas is a senior lecturer in Asian Studies at UMass Lowell. He is the author of The Story of Tum Teav and editor of Cambodia’s Lament and Resolute Heart: Selected Writing from Lowell’s Cambodian Community. He was associate director of the Cambodian Genocide Program at Yale University, 1998-2001. George contributed 35 Years Ago: Khmer Rouge Terror, a poem about his wife’s experience as a refugee who escaped the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia.

Matthew C. Donahue, a lawyer in private practice with an emphasis on environmental law, is a former Lowell city councilor and co-founder of the Lowell Parks & Conservation Trust. An accomplished musician, Matt’s songs are available on the web. Matt contributed Lowell Environmental Attorney Tries to Declare Car Independence! an account of his efforts to go without a car in Lowell in 2010.