2018 marks the 47th season of the Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning. We are proud to continue serving you, our audience. SILL's Global Issues Series will present a broad overview of the global challenges we face. We will look at these challenges in the context of the new Administration in the U.S. which has adjusted the prism we use. We will deal globally with regions from China, Korea and Russia to our NAFTA partners and the Middle East. We will examine domestic challenges as well, such as the opioid crisis, automation or artificial intelligence and our changing politics. Areas of compelling interest which will shape our futures will be examined in depth for our 2018 participants by lecturers extremely well versed in these areas.
We have a good mix of returning and new speakers for 2018. Ten speakers are new to the SILL audiences, offering perspectives that have not been heard here before. Another 7 are returning speakers we have did not have the possibility to hear from last year but who have been well received in the past. Other favorite speakers are returning to the program to present their perspectives on key issues like the impact of Brexit and the future of the European Union and the motivations behind Russia's changing push for greater global influence.
Our programs are available during the day in both Sarasota and Venice. If you are busy during the business day and unable to participate in those programs, we have found the expanded Lakewood Ranch program an attractive alternative. The slightly smaller venue makes the presentations particularly accessible. This evening series is another way for us to expand the SILL audience.
SILL promises another great year examining the Global Issues which will impact us in 2018. We expect to deliver a lecture series of exceptional breadth and depth on topics in the news today.
Our Program Committee for this season's Global Issues programs are: Bob Barylski, Beth Cotner, Bob DeFillippi, Bob Deutsch, Richard Friedman, Peter Huber, Jorie Lueloff, Jeffrey Olsen, Chet Thompson and Bob Toplin.
Frequently one of us will be moderating for the speakers. However, you will find many of us at most lectures, and we welcome your feedback.
We hope you find the 2018 season enjoyable and informative.