Healthcare lessons that apply to the opioid crisis.

Environmental threats to the endangered white abalone.

The continuing necessity of adult literacy.

And three major threats to the future of America.

There is one the common thread uniting this invigorating quartet of topics, and it happens to be the Petaluma Health Center. This Sunday, April 15, at Hawkwood Estate in Petaluma — as a fundraiser for the innovative local health institution — all four of these themes will be explored in a swift, invigorating series of short talks, each one delivered by an expert in the fields of health work, marine biology, adult literacy, and international diplomacy, respectively. It’s ‘Petaluma Talks,’ the inaugural kick-off to what organizers hope will become a regular speaker series bringing together some of the most brilliant thinkers and writers and creators in the country.

In just under two hours, including a brisk question-and-answer session, four top talkers will address four major issues facing the world right now — and maybe offer a few practical suggestions of what can be done about them. Snacks and drinks will be provided, along with some gorgeous views of Petaluma on this 200 acre equestrian and event center.

And the Petaluma Health Center is the beneficiary.

For the first Petaluma Talks event, the speakers certainly know their stuff.

Ted Eliot, former USA ambassador to Afghanistan, will deliver a talk titled, “The three largest threats to the well-being of the next generation.” In addition to his service as an ambassador, Eliot is Dean Emeritus of Fletcher School of Diplomacy and Law, at Tufts University, and is Trustee Emeritus of the Asia Foundation.

Kristin Aquilino, a marine scientist as UC David Bodega Marine Laboratory, will offer her own talk, with the colorful title, “Spa treatments, mood lighting, and matchmaking: Saving the endangered white abalone.”

Julianne Guariglia is Deputy Director of Initiatives and Information for the Clinton Foundation. Her talk is titled, “Community lessons learned from extensive health work and program management in Africa that apply to the opioid crisis in America.”

Finally, Paul Heavenridge, Executive Director of Petaluma’s Literacyworks, will present a talk entitled “The importance of a literate America: Why should we care?”

The mission of the Petaluma Health Center, which was established in 1996, is to ensure access and high quality health care, with a focus on prevention, to as much of the community as possible. The institution is a non-profit, Federally Qualified Health Center.

(Comments can be sent to David at