Stephen A. Stills is a singer, songwriter, philanthropist and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer whose legendary six-decade career traces its origins to Gainesville.
One of rock music's most enduring figures, Stills has had multiple solo works and been a part of four hugely influential groups - Manassas, Buffalo Springfield, Crosby, Stills & Nash, and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. He has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice for Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills & Nash, is a member of the Songwriter's Hall of Fame, and is a BMI Music Icon.
As renowned for his instrumental virtuosity as for writing era-defining anthems including "For What It's Worth" and "Love The One You're With," Stills is ranked No. 28 on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time, calling his acoustic picking on "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes" "a paragon of unplugged beauty." Three of his albums are among Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Stills is ranked No. 28 on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time, calling his acoustic picking on "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes" "a paragon of unplugged beauty."
Stills lived in Gainesville during the 1950s when he attended J.J. Finley Elementary School and again in the early 1960s, when he attended Gainesville High School. The 1963 GHS yearbook shows that Stills was in the marching band, the chorus and played guitar in the group called The Accidental Trio. He remembers selling soft drinks in UF's stadium during football games.
Stills also briefly enrolled in UF in 1963 before leaving for New York City to try his hand at performing. He donated generously toward the construction of what is now the George Steinbrenner Band Building, home to the Stephen Stills Rehearsal Room.
Stills rose to national and international fame with Buffalo Springfield, which formed in Los Angeles in 1966. He continues to tour and record. Currently, Stills is on tour with Judy Collins, following the release of their 2017 album Stills & Collins.
Alongside music, Stills lends his support to a number of causes including this year's 5th Light Up The Blues Concert, held at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. Hosted by Stills and his wife, Kristen, the concerts have been emceed by Jack Black, featured a variety of artists and raised over $1.8 million for Autism Speaks' research and advocacy efforts.
Onye Ozuzu is a dance administrator, performing artist, choreographer, educator, and researcher currently serving as dean of the University of Florida College of the Arts. Actively presenting work since 1997, Dean Ozuzu has presented work nationally and internationally at The Joyce Soho (Manhattan, N.Y.), Kaay Fecc Festival Des Tous les Danses (Dakar, Senegal), La Festival del Caribe (Santiago, Cuba), Lisner Auditorium (Washington, D.C.), and McKenna Museum of African American Art (New Orleans, La.). She has performed locally in Chicago at Hamlin Park Summer Sampler, with Red Clay Dance in La Femme, and in the Afro-Latin@ Summer Dance Intensive at Columbia College Chicago. Dean Ozuzu has been Artist in Residence at Dorchester Art + Housing Collaborative of the Rebuild Foundation, EarthDance Workshop and Retreat Center, Bates Dance Festival, Chulitna Wilderness Lodge and Retreat, and Lagos danceGATHERING in Lagos, Nigeria.
Her collaboration with jazz composer Greg Ward, Touch My Beloved's Thought, premiered at the Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park (Chicago, Ill.)—a live dance and music performance in honor of Charles Mingus and commissioned by Links Hall and Constellation. Her recent project, Project Tool, which explored the relationship between mind, body and tool, was a 2018 Joyce award and a 2016 Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artist recipient as well as a National Performance Network (NPN) Creation Fund Project co-commissioned by Links Hall in partnership with Dancing Grounds and NPN.
Dr. Ozuzu has dedicated much of her work as a dance artist to cultivating space for diverse dance forms to exist in pluralist relationship to one another. In her body she has negotiated the inter-sectionality between many movement forms from tennis to ballet, West African dance to Hatha Yoga, freestyle House to salsa, contemporary dance to Aikido. Rather than just "collecting" these dance styles, she cultivates the ability to make choices among these techniques with an intention to access a purposefully hybridized movement practice. She seeks a relationship that is like the relationship of a maker to their tools, rather than a person to their habits. Dean Ozuzu makes contemporary dance that is "tooled" by, but not dictated by, traditional movement cultures in style, technique, concept and execution.
Thomasenia Lott Adams is a professor of mathematics education and the associate dean for research and faculty development in the UF College of Education. She is energized by providing support and services to novice and experienced researchers who are pursuing external funding for their scholarships. She recognizes that the world of external funding is becoming increasingly competitive, so she expertly leads her team to help faculty build engaging, productive, and multi-disciplinary efforts that further the college's mission of improving the lives of people across the spectrum of early childhood through adulthood. To demonstrate this model, Dr. Adams provided leadership for an interdisciplinary project concerning mathematics, science, and school counseling for which she and two colleagues were successful in securing funding from the National Science Foundation to study girls' positionality in mathematics and science as they transition to middle school.
As Dr. Adams embarks on her 25th year on UF's faculty, not only does she have external funding to her credit, but she has also written 10 books and more than 50 journal articles related to teaching and learning mathematics. One of her recent books, Making Sense of Teaching Mathematics, Grades 3-5, received the 2018 Teacher's Choice Award. In April of this year, she culminated her role as program chair of the annual conference of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, and she recently accepted the invitation to become an associate editor of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics' journal, Mathematics Teacher: Learning and Teaching, PreK-12. She is highly regarded by her peers in mathematics education, and she uses her influence to mentor future scholars, as evidenced by her cadre of doctoral graduates and collaborations that she has with mathematics educators across the nation.
As the mathematics program officer for the UF Lastinger Center for Learning, Dr. Adams contributes to the success of Algebra Nation, a platform designed to support students to pass the end-of-course exam for Algebra I, which is a requirement for high school graduation in the state of Florida. Through this and other collaborations, she continues to build a record of engagement and scholarship in her field.