Florida Humanities Speakers Directory

2021 Florida Humanities Speakers Directory

Engaging Speakers, Compelling Topics, and Thought-provoking Discussions

Welcome to the Florida Humanities’ Speakers Directory, a curated collection of the Sunshine State’s best and brightest experts, scholars, journalists, folklorists and more, poised to bring engaging presentations and conversations right to your local community.

Florida Humanities is the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Partnering with nonprofit organizations across the state, Florida Humanities funds a wide variety of grants and public programming that explores Florida’s rich history and culture.

How to use this directory:

Using this directory, organizations can connect with these experts to bring a wide variety of compelling humanities programming to their community.  Speakers can engage the public is several ways:

Florida Talks

Speakers may be asked to give a program for one of our Florida Talks partners. Florida Talks offers nonprofit organizations an easy, inexpensive way to host informative and thought-provoking presentations across the state.

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Community Project Grants

Speakers may be contacted to participate as a scholar, presenter, or panelist for a Florida Humanities-funded Community Project Grant. These grants support a variety of humanities programming based on the specific needs of a community.

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Museum on Main Street

Speakers may be asked to give a program that complements the theme of one of our Museum on Main Street exhibits. These exhibits travel to small and underserved communities and explore a variety of humanities topics.

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Please Note: Speakers on this directory have agreed to a capped speaking fee of no more than $300 for a Florida Humanities-funded event. This fee does not include travel, so be sure to discuss those details as you plan your event.

2021 Speakers Directory

Photo of Betty Jean Steinshouer

Betty Jean Steinshouer

Author, Historian, Actress
Contact Phone:: 727-735-4608


About the speaker

Betty Jean Steinshouer first came to Florida with “Willa Cather Speaks” in 1989. Floridians convinced her to add Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings to her repertoire, and she moved to the state in order to do her research. She has since toured 43 states presenting Humanities programs on women authors (including five with Florida connections), homelessness in literature, Ernest Hemingway, America at War, Jim Crow Florida, and marriage equality.

In 2004, she was named a Fellow in Florida Studies at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg.

Her book about Willa Cather, Long Road from Red Cloud, was awarded the 2020 International Book Award for biography.

Programs Available

Scribbling Women in Florida

A dozen women authors have put Florida on the map, between Reconstruction-era Harriet Beecher Stowe and Constance Fenimore Woolson, the Gilded Age’s Sarah Orne Jewett, the homesteading Laura Ingalls Wilder and her libertarian daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, environmentalists Marjory Stoneman Douglas and Rachel Carson, friends Zora Neale Hurston and Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, and poets Edna St. Vincent Millay, Elizabeth Bishop, and Anne Morrrow Lindbergh.

They all gravitated to the Land of Flowers, and here are the lessons they learned.

Boston Marriages gone South

Here are the lives of four lesbian couples who traveled to Florida together in the 19th and 20th centuries, long before marriage equality: Sarah Orne Jewett and Annie Fields; Katharine Loring and Alice James; Marjory Stoneman Douglas and Carolyn Percy Cole; Elizabeth Bishop and Louise Crane.


Program format(s) available:

  • In-person
  • Virtual

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Local Color event, Tallahassee, 2018
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