Join Ray Smith and Dr. Pat Postma on Monday, July 9 at 6:30 in the Lawson McGhee Library meeting room for a discussion of The Atomic City Girls by Janet Beard.
June Walker is only eighteen years old when she boards a bus for a city that does not officially exist: Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Once there, she joins hundreds of other young women operating machines whose purpose is never explained. Cici, June's vivacious roommate, is on a mission to find a wealthy husband; Joe is an African-American laborer who works tirelessly to send money back home to his family; and Sam is a volatile physicist with whom June begins an affair. Through their stories, this novel relates a secretive period of American history.
Smith graduated from the United States Air Force’s electronics technical school and attended the University of Tennessee. He holds a certificate from the University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business. Almost five decades of experience at Y-12 provide Smith a deep understanding and high appreciation of its heritage. Through printed media complemented by film, presentations, tours, and a history center, he has made the history of the Y-12 National Security Complex and Oak Ridge available to all.
Postma earned a Ph.D. in Economics at the University of Tennessee. She is an Oak Ridge pioneer, having arrived in the mud of 1943. She attended the first day of the first elementary school here and, unexpectedly, she says, has spent her life here. Most recently she is involved with the restoration of the International Friendship Bell and with the Oak Ridge Fund for Achieving Community Excellence.