Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Dr. Cleopatra Abdou: How Stereotype Threat May Be Impacting Healthcare for Minorities

Cleopatra Mariam Abdou is an assistant professor in the Leonard Davis School of Gerontology and Department of Psychology at the University of Southern California (USC). Most recently, Dr. Abdou co-authored a first of it’s kind study that “found evidence that the persistent health disparities across race may, in part, be related to anxiety about being confronted by negative racial stereotypes while receiving healthcare.” Prior to joining the faculty at USC, Abdou completed a postdoctoral fellowship in social epidemiology and population health as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health and Society Scholar at the University of Michigan. Abdou received her Ph.D. in social and health psychology, minoring in statistics, from UCLA in 2008. In 2000, she graduated magna cum laude from the University of Miami with a degree in psychology and art. 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Dr. Mahendra Rao: On The Future of Stem Cell Research

Dr. Mahendra Rao is a stem cell biologist, researcher, and the former founding director of the Center for Regenerative Medicine (CRM) at the U.S. National Institutes of Health. A professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the University of Utah School of Medicine, Dr. Rao has worked extensively in the field of stem cell research. Prior to his work at the NIH, Dr. Rao served as Vice President of Regenerative Medicine at the Life Technologies Corporation, and co-founded Q Therapeutics, a neural stem cell research company in Utah. Dr. Rao holds an M.D. from Bombay University and a PhD in developmental neurobiology from the California Institute of Technology. This spring, Dr. Rao stepped down from his role as director at the NIH to join the The New York Stem Cell Foundation’s Research Institute.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Jerry Power: On the Future of Digital Content Creation

Jerry Power is the Executive Director of the Institute for Communication Technology Management (CTM) and Assistant Professor of Clinical Marketing at USC’s Marshall School of Business. Mr. Power works with the Institute to identify emerging trends that will reshape the evolutionary trajectory of the communications sector, and co-authored the book, Transforming Business: Mobility, Big Data and Globalization, which explores how technology is changing business practices among successful companies. Over a 30-year career, Mr. Power has held positions in Marketing, Corporate Strategy, Business Development, Product Management, and Product Development at companies such as Alcatel-Lucent, Siemens, and Motorola. He received MSc in Computer Science from Pennsylvania State University in 1982.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Dr. Daniel Mark: On His Appointment to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom

Professor Daniel I. Mark was appointed to the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom on May 9, 2014 by Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH), who said, “Daniel is a young, inspiring teacher and a meticulous academic. He is an emerging thought-leader who has spoken extensively about religious freedom in the U.S. and abroad.” Dr. Mark is the youngest appointee to the commission by almost a generation. He is currently an assistant professor of political science at Villanova University, where he teaches political theory, philosophy of law, American government, and politics and religion.  He is also research scholar of the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, New Jersey and an assistant editor of Interpretation: A Journal of Political Philosophy. Dr. Mark holds a BA, MA, and PhD from the Department of Politics at Princeton University. Before graduate school, he spent four years as a high school teacher.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Tom First: On How to Succeed Against Industry Giants

Tom First is an entrepreneur and investor. In 1989, he co-founded Nantucket Nectars with college friend Tom Scott in 1989. Dubbed “The Juice Guys” in advertisements, the duo’s business was quickly named to Inc. Magazine’s “Inc. 500 list of fastest-growing U.S. companies and was subsequently sold to Ocean Spray for close to $100 million in 1997. Since Nantucket Nectar’s sale, Mr. First started several other successful ventures, including Eleven Technologies and OWATER. Today, he is the managing partner at First Beverage Group, a financial services and investment firm that focuses on the beverage industry. Mr. First graduated from Brown University in 1985 with an A.B. in American History.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Dr. Eric Sussman: Real Estate and the Modern American Dream

Dr. Eric Sussman is a lecturer in accounting and real estate at the UCLA Anderson Graduate School of Management. Businessweek recognized him as one of the Top Ten Most Popular Business School Professors in the country. Dr. Sussman is also President of Amber Capital, Inc., Manager of Fountain Management, LLC and Clear Capital, LLC, and Managing Partner of Sequoia Real Estate Partners and the Pacific Value Opportunities Funds, which have acquired, rehabilitated, developed, and managed over two million square feet of residential and commercial real estate in the past 20 years. He received his MBA from Stanford, with honors, in 1993, after graduating Summa Cum Laude from UCLA in 1987.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Dr. Farid Salama: On NASA Research and Recreating “Space Dust”


Dr. Farid Salama is a Senior Research Scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, and a founding member of Ames’ Astrophysics and Astrochemistry laboratory. Dr. Salama is an expert in molecular spectroscopy and does extensive work in the areas of laboratory astrophysics and astrochemistry in conjunction with ultraviolet, optical and infrared astronomy (ground-based, space-based and airborne). He was awarded the NASA Medal for Exceptional Scientific Achievement developing a unique experimental facility in laboratory astrophysics and recognizing innovative research on the diffuse interstellar bands. Most recently, Dr. Salama’s team recreated “space dust” in a laboratory setting.