The 8th Annual Waterlow World Maturity Conference

Boston Nature Center, October 18th-19th, 2019

500 Walk Hill Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02126 

for information, please call Adam Frost, one of the conference co-ordinators, at 617-522-1049, or click here to email.

Register for the conference here:

Registration for October 18th-19th, 2019 conference at the Boston Nature Center (you can pay by credit card or paypal here, or call Adam to arrange to pay by check or volunteer work). The regular fee is $40 per household. If you are on a tight budget, choose one of the lower fees.

Fee choices

Brad Baker on gardeningCaroline Bridgman-Rees and Kathleen Robinson

An introductory note from Adam:

My high school history teacher, Charlotte Waterlow, died several years ago in England, where she had retired after a long and full career of teaching, writing, speaking and cheerful revolutionary agitation. In seeking a way to celebrate this wonderful organizer, I realized-- we should organize! In that spirit, we held the first conference in Charlotte's honor in 2012 in Boston. The conference was rich and moving, and provided inspiration, guidance and nourishment for the year.

In 2013-2018 we held our annual conferences, which continued some themes and introduced new ones.


2019 Conference


As with the last seven annual conferences, this is a participatory conference, with each person, if s/he wishes, giving a talk or a presentation in a media of her/his choosing. People also are welcome to come and simply listen and join in the discussions. The theme, once again, is something you do that helps the world become a more mature place.

Charlotte wrote that human society has developed into a sort of adolescence, filled with "joy riding" and other self-defeating and destructive behaviors, that may seem fun or necessary at the time but are leading us all to the edge of a cliff. She frequently said our choice now is "grow up or blow up".

The purpose of this conference is to nurture our efforts to help the world grow up and not blow up. These efforts can be part of paid, professional work, or part of one's personal or volunteer life. Our goal has been to share this work with each other, get encouragement and constructive suggestions, and see how our work fits together.



Tentative Schedule for the October 2019th conference:

Saturday, October 18th:

the day starts at 9 am and goes to 4 pm.

9 am-- Introductions, making sure everyone has what they need.

9:30 am-- Remembering and learning from Charlotte Waterlow

led by Charlotte's friends and colleagues, including a reading from Caroline Bridgman-Rees and a talk by Adam Frost

10 am - 3:45 pm talks, eating, a nature walk, and chatting

4pm- People are encouraged to walk and visit the sanctuary together. The building closes at 5 pm.


Sunday, October 19th:


10 am-- meet and get re-acquainted

10:30 am - 1 pm Talks, presentations, and discussions

1 pm - 2 pm lunch and poetry reading, and music performed by participants

2 pm - 4 pm Talks, presentations and discussions

4 pm - nature walk and au revoir till next year


Here are the talks from the 2018 conference:

Dina Baker

Dina is an author / publisher who heads Baker's Dozen Press (  and enjoys other entrepreneurial endeavors; leads marketing and communication for a mission-driven firm that partners with the public sector; and participates in a number of community organizations. Dina and her husband Brad are empty-nesters living in the Greater Boston area.


Let's create an overground

When we cannot trust the Federal government to function within the conceit of a Democracy or for the best interests of the people, I believe we must organize and act on a local and regional level and develop a deliberate structure of linkages among those local and regional efforts--facilitated by large, systemic, humane nonprofits--so we end up with a national network strong enough to serve the nation and facile enough to serve localities in a manner that meets human needs and fights the injustices from the Administration. I believe houses of worship can have a role in that, their linkages with other local organizations can be a start of this network, and the larger religious and other nonprofit governance bodies and foundations can further it. Before we have no choice but to resist through an underground, perhaps we have an opportunity to fight immoral and unjust leadership through this "overground." I'll share some of my thoughts on the issue, as background for inviting dialogue to get us closer to a means to repair our world.


Brad Baker: I am Bio-hydrology researcher and Community Garden activist.

My talk is on "Tree Appreciation!"  for poetry and commerce and the collective good.


Victoria Suescum artist and activist, native of Panama, will talk about her art and political resistance in an oppressive dictatorship, and what we can learn from her hard experience to help us in our current political situation. You can see some of Victoria’s art work at


Helena Snow experienced an aspect of Charlotte Waterlow that some of us may not have known about. Charlotte was a mystic and had the gift of clairvoyance. Charlotte once offered Helena a "reading" that she has never before spoken publically about but has spent a life-time growing into. Helena, a  positive parenting coach and freshly- minted Jungian psychoanalyst who lives and practices in France, would like to speak to us about that experience.


Linus Idemudia will teach us about developments in Nigeria.


Diane Taraz: folk singer, composer and music historian, will sing and talk about music, and will have some of her albums available for sale.  Please read about Diane's work and purchase music at httpS:// Please also note that on the eve of the conference, Oct. 12th, Diane will be giving a presentation about Elizabeth Freeman, a slave who successfully sued in Massachusetts for her freedom in 1780. See httpS:// for details.


Johnn O'Sullivan: engineer and poet, Johnn will introduce us to the work of Hugh Kenner, philosopher and literary critic of the work of Ezra Pound and R. Buckminster Fuller.


Mark Destler: educator and philosopher and founder of Tutors for All, may talk about how newness comes into the world.


Christian White: author and teacher, will share some of his writing and thinking about maturity, both his own and that of his peers.


Wayne Clark:  philosopher and co-op creator/manager, may talk about the connection between the deep philosophy of process analysis and the daily life of co-ops.


Marlene Archer: educator and computer entrepreneur, may talk about natural burial, or about her work helping kids on the autistic spectrum learn to fix computers


Peter Hoerr: attorney and Belmont Police supervisor, may talk about his participation this year in a discussion group about Ferguson and its larger implications for citizens and police


Jamie Leighton: poet and attorney, may read some of her poetry and talk about how poetry and law talk with each other.


Joshua Hoerr: College student and restaurant worker, may talk about working life for young people these days.


Linus Martins: Linus will talk about his experiences in Nigeria and the U.S.


Jan Green, musician and activist, will share her music and political experiences.


Omar Khudari, farmer, software engineer and business developer will talk about and give a demonstration of electric bicycles, which are becoming a major form of transportation in Europe. Omar is a retired computer software entrepreneur. Since starting his first company in 1987, Omar has been active in several start-up companies and not-for-profit organizations as an investor, advisor, and board member.


"Learning to love electric bicycles (ebikes)—they are good for your health and good for the environment."


Caroline Bridgman-Rees, peace activist and professor of history, will talk about  her decades in the peace movement, from the end of World War II to the present.


Adam Frost, computer repairman and educator, will talk about how to change the legal and practical framework so that people with disabilities can become full members of the working world.










From previous conferences:

To give you a feel for the conference, here are some descriptions of the presentations from the past six years:

To read detailed notes from the 2015 conference, click here

Summary of talks from the 2015 conference:

Orion Kriegman introduced us to the Boston Food Forest organization, and took us on a tour of their food forest at the Nature Center.

Ed Chancy talked about how his parents helped him become an educated man, working effectively and compassionately with the challenges of Ed’s cerebral palsy.

Marlene Archer shared the story of helping her business partner understand how capable kids with autism can be, by helping her team of students master sophisticated processes of computer repair and refurbishing.

Marguerite Rosenthal introduced us to the basics of the “so-called” criminal justice system, including the dangerous policy of excluding people with criminal records from public housing projects.

Lillia Greaves talked about the vital importance of having a place for troubled people to work out their issues, particularly young people.

We talked about Charlotte Waterlow’s life and work.

We discussed the Palestine-Israeli conflict. Brad Baker presented a vision for sharing water in the Middle East. Yehuda shared his personal experience of violence in Israel-Palestine.

We read aloud the children’s version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (httpS://

Liz Anker shared with us her efforts to help adults learn to sing and perform.

In talking about a serious car accident, we discussed how our culture deals with guilt, mistakes and making amends, and compared this approach to other cultures.

We talked about the vital importance of people thanking and communicating with their teachers over the long term.

Claude Solnik introduced us to the life and work of Victoria Woodhull, the first female candidate for president in U.S. history.

Marlene Archer introduced us to the logistical and spiritual issues of natural burial.

We talked about the peace work of Caroline Bridgman-Rees, one of the founders of the conference.

Carl Johnson and Mary Ni demonstrated their method of teaching attentive listening. and the way it can help people perform the vital task of expressing the full range of their emotions.

Wayne Clark talked about his efforts as a board member of Harvest Co-op to help teach the board and management about the vital importance of member involvement.

Adam Frost talked about “co-worker theology”, using your relationships with your co-workers as an opportunity for practicing the full and deep interactions that make for godliness.


Here is the sampling of some of the presentations given in 2014 :

Anne Kern: I want to talk to the group and ask their advice about my self-titled "Read-Aloud" project. The idea is that reading aloud is one of many ways to make the world a better and happier place, specifically in education, for seniors or others that may feel lonely or isolated, for those who are physically ill or unable to read due to blindness or age, as a community building activity, a family bonding experience, an altogether magical experience, and lastly (but not least) as a terrific soporific. Problem is, I need ideas/advice about how to turn my theories into practice: where, with whom, when, and how can I build this project while still paying my mortgage. "

Ben Beckwith: will discuss his 35 years as a social activist, and discuss ways of focusing activism so that it reaches its goal.

Ed Chancy: Ed will help us to learn about life with a serious physical disability, and taught us about the different kinds of work that have helped him and others to thrive, in spite of many obstacles both inside and outside.

Jan Green: Jan may sing songs about life and labor.

Frank Fisher: an Emeritus Professor of economics at MIT, will give a talk on the economics of water, particularly in the Middle East.  He will show that the view that water is a source of war is simply mistaken.  Then he will discuss how how thinking about water values rather than water ownership can both make water systems much more efficient and also lead to gains for all parties rather than to conflicts.

Rosemary Jones: I plan to talk about a couple of low-tech community projects that I dream of: setting up a system for neighbors to take responsibility for clearing storm drain inlets, and making the area friendly for bees and (especially monarch) butterflies.  For the latter, I would like to copy the Cambridge ladies who fought the monarch-destructive black swallowwort vine

Tamara Safford: Tamara, an artist who works with people with development obstacles, presents a short video that illustrates the project on "social stigmatism"

Phoebe Aina Allen: As a mystic, intuitive, astrologer, and healer, Phoebe Aina Allen has found through witnessing her own and others’ life experiences that one of the biggest obstacles to maturity is consciously or unconsciously collapsing into our emotional wounds.  Phoebe’s work is focused on healing the emotional body (wherein resides the Wounded Child) and helping people recognize their unique gifts.  She will share how astrology and energy reading and balancing can bring one into a state of full integrity, empowerment, and maturity, which allows one to know who one is, what one is, and how to fully partake in the creation of one’s personal life and the co-creation of our world.”

Brad Baker: will talk about his concept for The Nexus Project, a multi-faceted community engagement approach.

Dina Wolfman Baker: will talk about The Bernard Wolfman Civil Discourse Project,  through which we practice and model civil discourse as a means to take on and pass on the legacy she has inherited in the power of and responsibility for open-minded discussion,  learning and action.

Marlene Archer: Marlene will give us an in-depth view of her work helping kids with autism learn to run a computer refurbishing business.

Jose Lacèn: draws on his deep religious education an beliefs to help severely disabled patients at the Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital spinal cord injury floor.

Carl Johnson: I have worked for years with my friend, Mary Ni, Associate Professor of Education at Salem State University, teaching people to build safe and caring communities through the development of listening skills. We have been especially successful using these techniques in diverse communities around issues of oppression. Recently Mary was invited to be a keynote speaker at a teachers’ conference in Shandong, China, where we taught and demonstrated use of these listening skills to build closer relationships.  Subsequently we presented workshops on these topics at the Peking University in Beijing, China.  Over the last thirty years we have helped people build relationships and communities at MIT, BU and Holy Cross and taught these skills at conferences. 

Elaine Kolb: Through her work as a disability rights advocate, artist and administrator, Elaine has helped many people achieve independence in a society that often makes it difficult for disabled people to be independent.

Adam Frost: Helping the world grow up by 1) crafting one's self, 2) creating nurturing and lively ecosystems, and 3) helping the individual and the society nurture and challenge each other.

Wayne Clark: Wayne, an authority on co-operative organizations, will continue last year's discussion of Process Analysis, with a view towards the macro level.




2013 presentations:

Claude Solnik: Claude taught us to find a phrase that captures our life in just a few words, and to use that phrase as a way of knowing who we are now, and a way of learning to grow. Examples are: "Do it to them before they do it to you", "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you", and "Let's do it together."

Ed Chancy: Ed helped us to learn about life with a serious physical disability, and taught us about the different kinds of work that have helped him and others to thrive, in spite of many obstacles both inside and outside.

Joe Waldbaum: Joe passionately expressed his view that terminally ill people have the right to control the time and circumstances of their death. This continued the ongoing debate that emerged in the 2012 Waterlow conference (see the 2012 presentations, below).

Adam Frost: What I learned from my friendship with Manson Whitlock, typewriter repairman.

Jamie Leighton: When doing Claude's exercise (see above, Claude Solnik), Jamie chose "Poet, Lawyer, Mother, Teacher". She used her talk as an opportunity to advocate for raising the minimum working wage in Massachusetts.

Nena Odim: Helping law students learn about ethics.

Deirdre O'Neill: Teaching small children and their big parents simple ways to speak their feelings, share their stuff and work things out.

Tina Odim-O'Neill: Led us in a discussion about the role of violence in international relations-- is it necessary?

Sequoia Odim-O'Neill: How kids are using technology to communicate with each other, and do their schoolwork. We talked about how texting sometimes gets in the way of people growing.

Mary Lennon: Mary pointed out the effort to dismantle the middle class in this country, including the attacks on unions. We worked hard during the conference to contrast this disrespect with our own respectfulness and nurturing.

Tamara Safford: Tamara gave us an example of a story that about people helping each other. Tamara also showed us some pictures of her visit to Israel, and talked about the advantages and disadvantages of being on top of the hill.

Bill Himelhoch: Bill helped Adam improve his chairing of the conference, and pointed out that Palestine had been exporting fruit to Britain before the Second World War.

Caroline Bridgman-Rees: Caroline led us in a discussion about how countries mis-use their abilities by harming people in their own and other countries.

Kathleen Robinson and Andres Molina: Kathleen and Andres lent their ears and hearts to the conference.

Brad Baker: Brad taught us to care for our gardens by respecting the life that is in them, talking with the nature in our lives instead of coercing it.

Dina Wolfman Baker: Dina read from her book, I Remember Mommy's Smile and led us in a discussion about loss and healing.

Jan Green: Jan sang songs about storms and survival.

Wayne Clark: Wayne introduced us to his long-gestating work on Process Analysis, an approach to understanding that combines deep philosophy and ethical caring.

Marlene Archer: Marlene gave us an in-depth view of her work helping kids with autism learn to run a computer refurbishing business.

Julie Brandlen: Julie, who directs the Boston Nature Center, talked with us about how an archaic state mental hospital was replaced with a place for everyone in the city to learn to be friendly with nature.


Presentations in the 2012 conference:

Claude Solnik, who works as a journalist in New York, discussed about his experience in helping to rescue an innocent men unfairly imprisoned

Bill Himelhoch discussed his work with Final Exit and Choice in Dying.

Cathy Jarcho spoke about helping an elderly parent through health care and financial complexities.

Tamara Safford spoke about growing organic gardens in two group homes in Somerville as part of a pilot project that will promote healthy living and healthy eating

Angelo Paul described how the Paul Robeson Center created an environment that helped him and his friends grow from confused kids to strong adults

Mary Lennon prepared a presenation on relying on one's Higher Power, particularly when people are being difficult

Adam Frost created a presentation showing how helping people with computers can foster fundamental social growth

Caroline Bridgman-Rees shared with us memories, work and hope from 7 decades of peace advocacy

Wayne Clark discussed his life work of advocating for co-ops as a means for world development

Marlene Archer shared her work with autistic adolescents to teach them how to refurbish donated computers

Kathleen Robinson-- founding and nurturing the Leland Community Garden

Ellen Wolfson-- visiting Nepal and exploring caste issues and the complex moral and strategic issues of helping people in foreign cultures

Rob Spencer-- the struggle to teach palliative care