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Author Vanessa Diffenbaugh to be keynote speaker at United Way’s Women in Philanthropy Luncheon

Image of Author Vanessa Diffenbaugh to be keynote speaker at United Way’s Women in Philanthropy LuncheonImage of Author Vanessa Diffenbaugh to be keynote speaker at United Way’s Women in Philanthropy Luncheon

Vanessa Diffenbaugh will be the keynote speaker for United Way’s annual Women in Philanthropy luncheon on Monday, October 15, 2012 at Crocker Art Museum.

Vanessa Diffenbaugh was born in San Francisco and raised in Chico, California. After studying creative writing and education at Stanford, she went on to teach art and writing to youth in low-income communities. She and her husband, PK, have three children: Tre’von, eighteen; Chela, four; and Miles, three. Tre’von, a former foster child, is attending New York University on a Gates Millennium Scholarship.Diffenbaugh and her family currently live in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where her husband is studying urban school reform at Harvard.

Vanessa is the best-selling author of The Language of Flowers.

The Language of Flowers

 The Victorian language of flowers was used to convey romantic expressions: honeysuckle for devotion, aster for patience, and red roses for love. But for Victoria Jones, it’s been more useful in communicating grief, mistrust, and solitude. After a childhood spent in the foster-care system, she is unable to get close to anybody, and her only connection to the world is through flowers and their meanings.

Now eighteen and emancipated from the system, Victoria has nowhere to go and sleeps in a public park, where she plants a small garden of her own. Soon a local florist discovers her talents, and Victoria realizes that she has a gift for helping others through the flowers she chooses for them. But a mysterious vendor at the flower market inspires her to question what’s been missing in her life. And when she’s forced to confront a painful secret from her past, she must decide whether it’s worth risking everything for a second chance at happiness.

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