In 1944, under the direction of President Franklin Roosevelt, nearly 1,000 war refugees from countries across Europe were brought to Fort Ontario in Oswego. The Oct. 4 session of the Institute for Retired People (IRP) will feature Elizabeth Ann Kahl, a former member of the Safe Haven Board of Directors. She will discuss how the president’s decision altered the lives of those refugees and the small community that gave them shelter and hope.
Kahl was raised in Muncie, Ind., where she attended Ball State Teachers College and Marian College, earning a bachelor’s degree in English. She moved to the Syracuse area in 1970 and taught English in various schools in the area until 1982.
Kahl received a master’s degree from SUNY Oswego in 1982 and became a computer program developer in education for federal grants. She began her advanced studies at Syracuse University and remained at SU as a computer consultant for faculty for 20 years. She served on the Safe Haven Board of Directors from 1999– 2010, was elected vice president in 2003 and board president in 2005.
The IRP program runs from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., and is free and open to the public. IRP sessions are held at the First Baptist Church of Syracuse, 5833 E. Seneca Turnpike, Jamesville.