Inaugural season December 2017 through 2018 for 5 Great Talks!
Confirmed Great Talks & Speakers
Cyber Wars, the Secrets, the Spies
DATE: Tuesday, December 5, 2017
VENUE: Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)
Former NSA Senior Executive. And Whistleblower
Thomas Drake served as a senior executive at the NSA from 2001 to 2008. He brought his concerns about wasteful spending at the NSA and the government’s surveillance program to a Baltimore Sun reporter; he was later charged by the Obama Administration with leaking classified information under the Espionage Act, but the charges were ultimately dropped.
Discover more about Thomas Drake:
- “Meet Thomas Drake” film project featuring Edward Snowden
- Smithsonian Magazine Article
- New Yorker Magazine Article
- Wikipedia Page
Dana Priest - MODERATOR
Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist
Washington Post investigative reporter and two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner, became the third John S. and James L. Knight Chair in Public Affairs Journalism at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism May 2, 2014.
Priest has spent the majority of her career focusing on national security, military operations and the U.S. intelligence agencies. A two-time Pulitzer Prize winner and three-time finalist, Priest uncovered secret CIA prisons in Eastern Europe and deplorable conditions for veterans at the Walter Reed Medical Center in Washington.
Discover more about Dana Priest:
We the People: A Crisis of Identity
DATE: Tuesday, January 9, 2018
VENUE: Maryland Public Television
Dr Lawrence Jackson
Johns Hopkins University
Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of English and History
Professor Jackson earned a PhD in English and American literature at Stanford University, and has held fellowships from the National Humanities Center, the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute at Harvard University, the Stanford Humanities Center, the Ford Foundation, and the William J. Fulbright program at the Council for International Exchange of Scholars. He began his teaching career at Howard University, and also taught at Emory University, before returning to his hometown to teach at Johns Hopkins University. Lawrence Jackson is the author of My Father’s Name: A Black Virginia Family after the Civil War (Chicago 2012), The Indignant Generation: A Narrative History of African American Writers and Critics (Princeton 2010) and Ralph Ellison: Emergence of Genius, 1913-1952 (Wiley 2002). Two of his books have been finalists for the Hurston-Wright Prize and The Indignant Generation won the 2011 William Sanders Scarborough Prize from the Modern Language Association and the Black Caucus of the American Library Association 2012 award for non-fiction. His forthcoming biography of Chester Himes will be published by W.W. Norton in 2017.
Maryland Democratic Party Chair
Kathleen Matthews has worked in the nation’s capital and Maryland for 40 years as a journalist, communications and public affairs executive, and Democratic political activist. She ran as a Democrat for Congress in Maryland’s 8th District in 2016 and was elected Chair of the Maryland Democratic Party on May 6, 2017. She serves on the boards of Emerge Maryland and Girl Scouts of the National Capital Area, and is active in the Women’s Democratic Club of Montgomery County. Kathleen was the chief communications and public affairs officer for Marriott International, the world’s largest hotel company, and one of Maryland’s largest and most respected employers from 2006-2015. In that role, she was responsible for the company’s global brand public relations, corporate communications, government affairs, social responsibility, and and foundation for people with disabilities.
Prior to her career at Marriott, Kathleen was an award winning news anchor and reporter at the ABC-TV affiliate in Washington, DC for 25 years, where she covered local news in Maryland and the nations capital. Matthews has been awarded multiple journalism awards, including nine local Emmys, the Human Rights Campaign’s Straight Ally Award, and Washingtonian of the Year for her community service.
Kathleen is a 1975 graduate of Stanford University, and a 2004 Fellow at the Institute of Politics at the Kennedy School at Harvard University. Her husband is American political commentator, talk show host, and author Chris Matthews.
- Kathleen Matthews listing on Maryland Democratic Party website
- Washington Post article on Matthews elected as Chair of MD Democratic Party
Star Trek Technology, Innovations, and Ideas—for Real
DATE: Tuesday, March 20, 2017
VENUE: Friend’s School of Baltimore
NASA Space Science Institute Project Scientist
Joel D. Green is the Project Scientist in the Office of Public Outreach at the Space Telescope Science Insitute — the Home of Hubble and the upcoming James Webb Space Telescopes, working closely with NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. Previously he was a research scientist at the University of Texas at Austin, and graduated with a doctorate in astrophysics from the University of Rochester. A New Yorker who spent twelve years in upstate NY, six years in Austin, and now a resident of scenic Baltimore, he has acquired a fondness for crab and barbecue, cowboy boots and hats, sunshine and Civil War battlefields.
Why Good Science and Research are Personal
DATE:Tuesday in 2018 TBA
VENUE: Maryland Science Center
A pioneer in the field of cancer genomics
Bert Vogelstein is Director of the Ludwig Center, Clayton Professor of Oncology and Pathology and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at The Johns Hopkins Medical School and Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center. A pioneer in the field of cancer genomics, his studies on colorectal cancers revealed that they result from the sequential accumulation of mutations in oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes. These studies now form the paradigm for modern cancer research and provided the basis for the notion of the somatic evolution of cancer. Together with Martin Nowak at Harvard University, he developed many mathematical models to understand the evolutionary process of cancer which lead to various hypotheses about mechanisms and timing of progression and seeding of metastases.
Dan Vergano is a science reporter for BuzzFeed News in Washington D.C. bureau, where he focuses on science and politics. He was previously a staff writer/editor at National Geographic, and senior science writer at USA TODAY. He is on the judging panels for both the AAAS and NAS science writing awards, and is a board member of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing (CASW).
Discover more about Dan Vergano:
Into Music: the Lines, the Heat, the Business
DATE: Tuesday in 2018 TBA
A conversation about the lines that cross over music cultures and genres, to what it is that makes some music hot—nor not—and the business that seems to rule it all.
Musician / Hip Hop Producer
Wendel Patrick has been referred to as “David Foster Wallace reincarnated as a sound engineer” by Urbanite Magazine and as “wildly talented” by the Baltimore Sun. He has been referred to by XLR8R magazine as “a hip-hop producer that could easily make any fan of Squarepusher, Boards of Canada, or Madlib flip out.” The alter-ego of classical and jazz pianist Kevin Gift, Wendel Patrick is rapidly making a name for himself as a producer to be recognized. His five albums, “Sound:”, “Forthcoming”, “JDWP”, “Passage” and “Travel” were all produced without the use of samples, with Patrick playing every note of every instrument. What is perhaps most astounding and perplexing to listeners is that there are actually no instruments…he crafts all of the instruments, and every note, electronically.
Equally at home performing on stage with his band, behind two turntables, beatboxing, improvising, or playing a Mozart Concerto on stage with orchestra, Wendel Patrick has toured Europe on several occasions and performed throughout the world with renowned spoken word artist and poet Ursula Rucker (The Roots, 4Hero). In 2014 Wendel Patrick traveled to Australia as a guest lecturer, speaking about music production and entrepreneurship in the arts at The Australian Institute of Music in Sydney and Melbourne. In 2011 Wendel Patrick co-founded the Baltimore Boom Bap Society, with Erik Spangler (DJ Dubble8) that performs monthly improvised hip hop shows with hand picked musicians and emcees. The monthly event was chosen by the Baltimore City Paper as the “Best New Hip Hop Night” of 2012. Wendel Patrick’s music has also been heard across the country on NPR stations, most notably on “OUT OF THE BLOCKS: 3300 Greenmount Ave.” an award winning program he co-produced with radio producer Aaron Henkin for WYPR that has been featured by the Third Coast International Audio Festival and Hearing Voices as well as the BBC. The program was also chosen as “Best Radio Project” of 2012 by City paper.
In addition to his music Wendel Patrick is an avid photographer and videographer. His photography has been featured on NPR, and he shoots all of the accompanying documentary photography and videography for “OUT OF THE BLOCKS”. He has filmed and directed numerous music videos for other artists.
Wendel Patrick/Kevin Gift majored in both music and political science at Emory University and earned his M.M. in Piano Performance as a scholarship student at the Northwestern University School of Music in Evanston Illinois. He was a full time professor of music at Loyola University in Baltimore where he taught piano, introduction to music theory, music history and electronic music production for eleven years from 2002-2013. Since 1998 Wendel Patrick has spoken at hundreds of programs in elementary schools in Baltimore City and throughout the greater Maryland area through Young Audiences of Maryland and The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s former Arts Excel program. In the Fall of 2016 He will be teaching Hip Hop Music Production: History, Theory and Practice at The Peabody Music Conservatory, the first such course in the conservatory’s history.
Aaron Henkin - MODERATOR
Radio Producer WYPR
Aaron creates and produces original radio programs for WYPR. His current project is the neighborhood documentary series, Out of the Blocks. His past work includes the long-running weekly cultural program, The Signal, and the Smithsonian Folkways Recordings series, Tapestry of the Times. Aaron’s stories have aired nationally on NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, PRI’s Studio 360, & The World.