Ben Brotemarkle is author of the book Beyond the Theme Parks: Exploring Central Florida, a look at historic preservation efforts and cultural festivals throughout the region that provide residents with a sense of community and visitors with interesting vacation options. The book received the inaugural James J. Horgan Book Award from the Florida Historical Society. Dr. Brotemarkle’s book Images of America: Titusville and Mims, Florida is a photographic and textual history looking at one of the world’s most important archaeological digs, the home of civil rights martyr Harry T. Moore, and the launch site of America’s manned exploration of space. His book Barberville is a photographic and textual history looking at the infamous Barber-Mizell Feud of 1870, the establishment of the rural Barberville community, and the creation of the Pioneer Settlement for the Creative Arts where historic buildings from throughout Central Florida are preserved. His latest book Crossing Division Street: An Oral History of the African American Community in Orlando is an interdisciplinary examination of the past, present and future of an historic neighborhood.
Prior to becoming Executive Director of the Florida Historical Society, Brotemarkle was Associate Professor of Humanities and Department Chair at Brevard Community College in Titusville. As creator, producer and host of the weekly public radio program The Arts Connection on 90.7 WMFE-FM Orlando from 1992 to 2000, Brotemarkle covered the local arts and cultural scene including theater, music, dance, film, the visual arts, and literature. His award-winning features have been heard around the world on Voice of America Radio, across the country on National Public Radio, and throughout the state on Florida Public Radio. Brotemarkle also occasionally produces and hosts special programs for public television. His 1999 television documentary The Wells’Built Hotel: A New Guest Checks In was awarded the Presidential Citation of the Florida Historical Society. His latest television documentary A Legacy of Hope: The Moore Heritage Festival of the Arts and Humanities is airing on several PBS stations.
As a part-time professional singing-actor, Brotemarkle has appeared in more than two dozen Orlando Opera Company productions, with Seaside Music Theater in Daytona Beach, and has been a featured performer in Cross and Sword--the official state play of Florida in St. Augustine.
Brotemarkle serves on the board of directors of the Florida Historical Society, the state’s oldest cultural organization and is a member of the Brevard County Historical Commission. A board member of the Association to Preserve African American Society, History, and Tradition (PAST, Inc.), Brotemarkle helps to plan, present, and promote activities and exhibitions at the Wells’Built Museum of African American History and Culture in Orlando. Dr. Brotemarkle is the Education Committee Chairman for the Moore Heritage Festival of the Arts and Humanities, organizing student workshops, public forums, oral history panels, and appearances by guest speakers.
Brotemarkle has a Ph.D. in Humanities and History from the Union Institute and University, a Master of Liberal Studies degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Humanities from Rollins College, and an Associate degree in Voice Performance from the Florida School of the Arts. Brotemarkle lives in Titusville with his wife Christina.
Dr. Brotemarkle is available for signings, lectures and program participation. You can contact him via e-mail at ben,firstname.lastname@example.org
BEN BROTEMARKLE'S CROSSING DIVISION STREET...
The reviews are in for Crossing Division Street:
“Dr. Brotemarkle does not restrict his study to only the Orlando area. This well-written book provides an excellent overview of the history of African-Americans in Florida while including the national perspective as well. This Professor and Department Chair of Humanities/Communications/Social and Behavioral Sciences at Brevard Community College has penned a treasure trove of information on this subject. This book is a valuable addition to this field of study and is written in such a straightforward easy style, it should be made accessible to middle and high school students.”
Cathy Mathias, Florida Today
“James Baldwin once remarked: ‘American history is longer, larger, more various, more beautiful, and more terrible than anything anyone has ever said about it.’ Swap out the word ‘American’ for ‘Orlando’ and Baldwin’s observation provides a dead-on description of Benjamin D. Brotemarkle’s new book, Crossing Division Street: An Oral History of the African-American Community in Orlando.”
Darryl E. Owens, The Orlando Sentinel
“…Brotemarkle’s book “Crossing Division Street: An Oral History of the African-American Community in Orlando” has no competition...”
Billy Cox, Florida Today
“ …Ben Brotemarkle [is] well remembered in Orlando from his days on public radio. Now Brotemarkle is a professor and department chairman at the Titusville campus of Brevard Community College, and he’s got good news. His new book, Crossing Division Street: An Oral History of the African-American Community in Orlando, has just been published by the Florida Historical Society Press.”
Joy Wallace Dickinson, The Orlando Sentinel