In the Frunchroom: Sheila Maloney

The third reader in our ladies-only* edition of The Frunchroom is Sheila Maloney, a Beverly resident and wearer of many hats.

1273177_10201527814333688_1993180055_oAt work Sheila is the Director of Externships at Northern Illinois University, College of Law. In addition to her work at the university, Sheila has a private legal practice focusing on arbitration and mediation where she resolves cases, conducts trainings and works with high school students on restorative justice issues. She is the author of The American Bar Association’s Guide to Resolving Your Dispute: Inside and Outside of the Courtroom. At home she has the title of Mom to her 3 kids and Wife to her dear husband. Sheila tries to balance work and family and finds that it’s almost always just one big zoo.

Sheila is a student of life who enjoys traveling, reading, dancing, and binge-watching Netflix series. She’s passionate about diversity issues, current affairs and sweet white wines. Sheila was born in São Paulo, Brazil, grew up in the Chicago suburbs and has lived in Wicker Park (before it was cool), the West Loop (when it was turning cool) and now Beverly (which has always been cool). She’s also a member of the Southside Diversity Collaborative.

Sheila received her undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign and her law degree from Northwestern University, School of Law. She has a mediation certificate from the Center for Conflict Resolution. She will read a piece about choices and says it will be more “drama” than comedy, but promises a couple jokes all the same.

See Sheila and the rest of our readers at Beverly Woods on Tuesday, September 27th at 730pm.

* Ladies-only readers. Gentlemen welcome in the audience!

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In the Frunchroom: Katy Jacob

Many of this month’s readers have strong Beverly ties, including our next reader – even though she doesn’t live in Beverly anymore.

me-ann-15Katy Jacob is a professional nerd, a mom of two and a wife to one. Given “spare time,” she likes to be by herself. She writes at  as well as at and is proud to have been part of the inaugural cast of Listen to Your Mother Chicago (2012).

Katy spent almost twenty years working on financial services and economic development research and policy for nonprofit think tanks and the Federal Reserve System. After a decade as a business economist and senior payments consultant for the Federal Reserve, Katy quit the daily grind and started her own consulting company, Katy Jacob Consultants LLC. (This just happened, so she’s still trying to figure out exactly what to do with herself.)

She hopes that now she will have more time to devote to writing poetry and missives about Chicago. Katy lived in Beverly for twelve years until last month, when she moved to Oak Park, her hometown. Her kids will always be native south siders and she will always believe that the Dan Ryan is the most efficient expressway in Chicago. She will read a bittersweet personal essay about he dysfunctional relationship with Chicago.

Join us at The Frunchroom at Beverly Woods Restaurant on September 27th at 730pm.

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In the Frunchroom: Eve Ewing

We’re less than a week away from our Beverly Art Walk Week show on Tuesday, September 27th at 730pm. We’re expecting our second show at Beverly Woods to be as lively as our July show so get ready.

But first, if you haven’t already read South Side Weekly‘s picks for the best of Beverly/Morgan Park – which just so happen to include us – or seen its editor-in-chief Jake Bittle talk about The Frunchroom on Windy City Live, do that now! And then come back and read about our first reader, Eve Ewing!

dsc_4841Eve Ewing grew up in Logan Square, and since then has lived in Pilsen, Hyde Park, and now the South Loop. She’s a sociologist of education whose research is focused on racism, social inequality, and urban policy and the impact of these forces on American public schools and the lives of young people.

Eve is also an essayist and poet. Her work has been published in many venues, including Poetry Magazine, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The Nation, The New Republic, Union Station, and the anthology The Breakbeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop. She co-directs Crescendo Literary, a partnership that develops community-engaged arts events and educational resources. Crescendo recently hosted the Chicago Poetry Block Party in the Bronzeville community, where Eve also used to teach middle school.

Eve will read an excerpt from a piece she wrote for The New Yorker about Dyett High School, specifically about the relationship between public schools and public housing in Bronzeville.

See you on September 27th at 730pm at Beverly Woods!

Photo: Fatimah Asghar

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Volume VII of The Frunchroom: Ladies night edition

In the first edition of The Frunchroom in our new, larger space at Beverly Woods back in April, I assumed we’d draw a good-sized crowd and then expand into the space over time.

We ended up packing the room and having to bring in more chairs.

All the support from the Beverly Area Arts Alliance and the community of regulars we’ve attracted since we started made that possible.

frunchroom_vol7_092716We hope you’ll join us again for a special Tuesday edition of The Frunchroom on Tuesday, September 27th at 730pm.

It’s special for two reasons:

1) It’s on a Tuesday to kick off Beverly Art Walk week, which will culminate in Saturday’s Art Walk starting at noon. More details are available here.
2) Longtime fans will know we don’t do themes at The Frunchroom, except for stories of the South Side told by people who know it well. But sometimes our readers come together in a certain way and this time we have an all-women lineup, which is the first time that’s ever happened.

As we did last time, we’ll have retro-inspired, arts-driven decor created by Alliance members. In addition, Alliance board member and Horse Thief Hollow manager Lizzy Benner will guest bartend at Beverly Woods serving unique craft cocktails not found elsewhere.

Without further ado, here are our readers:

Eve Ewing
Essayist, poet, sociologist, editor, artist

Katy Jacob
Writer, professional nerd, payments expert

Sheila Maloney
Mom, lawyer, professor, friend, wine enthusiast

Eileen O’Connor

Mare Swallow
Writer, founder of Chicago Writers Conference, fan of gin, ukulele novice

See you September 27th at 730pm at Beverly Woods! A $5 donation is requested at the door.

Bios and more to come in the following weeks.

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In The Frunchroom: RHYTHM

As we mentioned, this edition of The Frunchroom features two educator/poets from Avalon Park—pure serendipity but a happenstance sure to bring a deep resonance to the evening as Rhonda Gholston rounds out our lineup for July 21st.

me againRhondapreferably known as RHYTHM, is a mother, Chicago Public School art teacher and visual performing artist.  She is a member of the performing artist group P.O.E.T.R.E.E. Chicago and has been performing her poetry for the last 17 years. P.O.E.T.R.E.E. presently has one album and one mixtape, respectively titled Positive Pollution and The Group Who Sat By The Door.  Those albums were created to combat the negative messages translated through present day hip hop.

RHYTHM’s main goal as a human being is to teach the children the truth and that is the journey her life has taken. RHYTHM and P.O.E.T.R.E.E. have also conducted artistic expression and anger management workshops that target at-risk youthimplementing literacy through the arts as a means of violence prevention and to obtain knowledge of self and history.

RHYTHM will read a poem and a story that encapsulates “a day in the life of South Side RHYTHM,” which is about her day and night living on the 111th & Peoria. See you on July 21st at 730pm at Beverly Woods.

Need a reminder about The Frunchroom? RSVP on our Facebook event. And be sure to follow us on Facebook or on Twitter.

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In the Frunchroom: Peter Nickeas

nickeaseReaders at The Frunchroom range from artists to business owners, from poets to reporters. Peter Nickeas is in that last category.

When asked to describe himself and his work, Peter says:

I cover breaking news and violence for the Chicago Tribune, where I have worked for almost five years. I live in Norwood Park with my wife and two dogs. I find joy in spending time outside with my wife, growing things and tending to our garden. 

You can read Peter’s work in the Tribune here and hear his story on July 21st at Beverly Woods at 730pm.

Need a reminder about The Frunchroom? RSVP on our Facebook event. And be sure to follow us on Facebook or on Twitter.


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In the Frunchroom: Bill Leslie

In each edition of The Frunchroom, we try to showcase many aspects of the South Side. But we also love telling stories about the Beverly/Morgan Park neighborhood where we live. On July 21st, Bill Leslie brings us just such a story – one steeped in his own upbringing.

LeslieBill has spent his entire life in the City of Chicago, except for a four-year stint at the University of Illinois in Champaign, which at the time was just considered a part of Chicago’s far south side.  He has moved all the way from St. Margaret of Scotland to St. Barnabas to St. John Fisher.  He has been published in the Chicago Sun-Times, the Chicago Tribune, and the Chicago Reader, and was a weekly football correspondent for the Beverly Review in 1973, keeping the public informed on the exploits of his football team, the mighty 7th and 8th grade Buckeyes of St. Barnabas.

At Quigley Preparatory Seminary South, the image of Barbara Eden in her “I Dream of Jeannie” costume kept him from ever seriously considering a vocation as a Catholic priest. Yet after four years at the U of I, Bill thirsted for more Catholic education and attended DePaul Law School. He also studied improv comedy through the Second City, and once wrote a much better ending to a Saturday Night Live skit.

Bill then became a Senior Assistant Attorney General and realized his life-long ambition of marrying a Mother McAuley girl.  Along the way, he coached many youth sports teams, in baseball, softball, soccer, and basketball.  He is currently lawyering at Scannell and Associates on Western Avenue in Beverly.  Bill and his beautiful wife Marianne reside with three of their four kids in Beverly – one is off the payroll, thank God.

Bill will read a hyperlocal story – set on the square city block that comprises Sutherland Public School– about his adventures as a kid playing various forms of baseball there.

Need a reminder about The Frunchroom? RSVP on our Facebook event. And be sure to follow us on Facebook or on Twitter.

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