Winter/Spring 2024


February 6 Rob Nichols, President and CEO, American Bankers Association

Policy Landscape for America’s Banks

February 20 Philip Taubman, Lecturer, Stanford University’s Center for International Security and Cooperation; author; 30-year career with the New York Times

How George Shultz Ended the Cold War

March 5 Caroline Winterer, Department Chair, professor of history at Stanford University

When Weather Changed the Course of History

March 19 Dave Barry, Longtime syndicated humor columnist for the Miami Herald; author; Pulitzer Prize winner; guitarist in an all-author rock band

A Morning with Dave Barry

April 2 Eli Saslow, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist; author; New York Times staff writer

Rising out of Hatred: The Awakening of a Former White Nationalist

April 16 Sarah Parcak, Archaeologist; Egyptologist; professor of anthropology, University of Alabama; uses satellite imagery to identify potential archaeological sites

Tales from the “Indiana Jones” of Space

May 7 Roberto d’Alimonte, Dean, professor of political schience, Luiss-Guido Carli University in Rome; journalist, commentator on American/European politics

Is It Still the American Century?

May 21 Kirk O. Hanson, Seminal thinker in the field of business ethics; professor, Stanford University and Santa Clara University; Executive Director Markkula Center for Applied Ethics

The Ethics of Artificial  Intelligence

June 4 Richard Kogan, Practicing concert pianist  and psychiatrist

Ragtime:  The Mind and Music of Scott Joplin

Fall/Winter 2023-2024


September 19 Thomas Berens,  Sales and Marketing Executive, turned avid outdoorsman

Hidden Gems Among Bay Area Parks

October 3 Ross King,  Internationally recognized authority on crucial episodes in the history of Renaissance art and architecture

Brunelleschi’s Dome

October 17 Barbara Rae-Venter,  Genetic genealogist, biologist, patent attorney; helped identify the Golden State Killer

Cracking Cold Cases with DNA: The Revolution of Genetic Genealogy

November 7 Michael Stehr,  A glorious walk through the museum with this fine artist, decorative painter and art historian

A Day at the Musée d’Orsay

November 21 David Greenberg,  A Baroque violinist weaves together the stories of classical violin and Scottish fiddle music

Bach Meets Cape Breton

December 5 Ignacio Ornelas Rodriguez, historian of civil rights and social justice movements, is joined by photographer David Bacon

Bracero and Guestworker Programs:  A Look at Farm Labor

January 16, 2024 Garth Illingworth,  Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of California, Santa Cruz; among the thinkers behind the telescope

Discoveries from the James Webb Telescope

Winter/Spring 2023


February 7 Rebecca Eisenberg, Santa Clara Valley Water Distric, Director: District 7

Toilet to Tap? The Surprising and Exciting Potential of Recycled Water in our Sustainable Future

February 21 Mohan Gurunathan, Engineer, Entrepreneur, Activist

The Earth on Your Plate:  How Diet Can Transform the Earth & Your Health

March 7 Frans Lanting, Award Winning Wildlife Photographer

Bay of Life:  From Wind to Whales

March 21 John W. Rick, Associate Professor Emeritus of Anthropology and Archaeology Center, Stanford

The Origins of Authority in Ancient Chavin de Huántar, Peru

April 4 Thomas Fingar, Shorenstein Asia Pacific Research Center Scholar

Update on China and US China Relations

April 18 Abbas Milani, Hamid & Christina Moghadam Director of Iranian Studies, Stanford

A Feminist Democratic Movement in Iran

May 2 Larry Gerston, Political Science Professor Emeritus, San Jose State University; political Analyst on NBC Bay Area

Trumpism, Racism and the Decline of American Democracy

May 16 LaDoris Hazzard Cordell, California Superior Court Judge, Retired

My Life on the Bench — What Works, What’s Broken, How to Change It

June 6 Richard Kogan, Concert Pianist and Psychiatrist

West Side Story: The Mind and Music of Leonard Bernstein

Fall/Winter 2022-2023

September 20 Kike Calvo, Photographer, Author, Bi-Lingual Educator

The Power of Creativity

October 4 Mohan Gurunathan, Engineer, Entrepreneur, Activist

The Earth on Your Plate: How Diet Change Can Transform the Earth and Your Health

October 18 Robert Hartwell, Music Department Head and Professor of Music, Author, Lecturer, Foothill College

Secrets, Rumors, and Lies: The Life and Death of Pyotr Illyich Tchaikovsky

November 1 Dr. Wallace J. Nichols, Marine Biologist, Author, PhD

The Blue Mind: The Many Benefits of Being In, On, or Near Water

November 15 Deanne Fitzmaurice, Pulitzer Prize Winning Photographer, Photojournalist

Luck is a State of Mind

December 6 Katie Antypas, National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center Division Deputy

Supercomputing For Science: Los Altos Native Works on Big Iron

January 17 Heidi Kuhn, CEO and Founder – Roots of Peace

Turning Mines to Vines Worldwide for 25 Years

Winter/Spring 2022


February 1 David McLain,  Photographer

The Search for Longevity

February 15 Dr. Sylvia Earle, Underwater Explorer

Creating Hope Spots in the Blue Heart of our Planet

March 1 Tim Farrell, Retired Teacher, Hogarth Collector

Gin, Sin, Sex in the City: William Hogarth’s London

March 15 David Kennedy, Stanford Professor of History, Emeritus; Founder, Bill Lane Center for the American West

How the West Was Won and What It Has to Lose

April 5 Norman Naimark, American Historian, Robert and Florence McDonnel Professor of Eastern European Studies, Stanford University

Putin and Ukraine

April 19 Michael McRay

Storyteller and Conflict Resolution Consultant

Conflict and Emotions: What Are They Trying to Tell Us?

May 3 Dr. Elizabeth Ward, Executive Director, Los Altos History Museum

The Use and Misuse of Medieval History

May 17 Akilah Carter-Francique, PhD, Executive Director – Institute for the Study of Sport, Society, and Social Change, San Jose State University

Sport: A Platform for Social Change

June 7 Dr. Richard Kogan, Concert Pianist and Psychiatrist

Beethoven’s Deafness: Psychological Crisis and Artistic Triumph

Fall/Winter 2021-2022

September 21 Caroline Cocciardi, Author: Student of all things da Vinci

Leonardo’s Knots

October 5 Elizabeth Cobbs, Melbern G. Glasscock Professor of History, Texas A & M University

Defender of the Nation: Harriet Tubman and the Civil War

October 19 Pete McBride Photographer, Filmmaker Kevin Fedarko, Writer

Into the Grand Canyon: A 750 Mile Exploration

November 2 Carl Raymond, Professionally Trained  Chef, bringing together the worlds of food, history, literature and opera

From Dickens to Downton: The World of Victorian and Edwardian Food

November 16 Michael Kodas, Photojournalist and Educator. Senior Editor, Inside Climate News

Living With Megafires

December 7 Sean Hartley, Playwright, composer and lyricist. Director of the Kaufman Music Center Theater Wing

Four Musicals that Changed Broadway

January 18 Tina Rivers Ryan, Assistant Curator of contemporary art at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, New York

What’s the Deal with Contemporary Art?

Winter/Spring 2020

February 4 Bruce Pittman Director of Commercial Space Development; Chief System Engineer, NASA Ames Research Center, Silicon Valley

How Billionaires Are Changing the Space Program

February 18 Mark Lapadula, Playwright and Screenwriter, Film Producer and Senior Lecturer, Yale University Film Studies Program

The Greatest Romantic Moments in Movies

March 3 David Troxel, Worked in Dementia Care for over 30 years

The Art of Dementia Care

March 17 Caroline Cocciardi, Author, Student of all things da Vinci

Leonardo’s Knots  NOTE: this lecture is cancelled due to COVID 19

April 7

Sean Hartley, Leading Authority on the History of  the Broadway Musical

Four Musicals That Changed Broadway  NOTE: this lecture is cancelled due to COVID 19

April 21 Michael Kodas, Author and Photo Journalist

Living With Megafires NOTE: this lecture is cancelled due to COVID 19

May 5 Elizabeth Cobbs, Melbern G. Glasscock Professor of History, Texas A & M University

Defender of the Nation: Harriet Tubman and the Civil War  NOTE: this lecture is cancelled due to COVID 19

May 19 Carl Raymond, Professionally Trained Chef, bringing together the worlds of food, history, literature and opera
Foothill College

From Dickens to Downton: The World of Victorian and Edwardian Food  NOTE: this lecture is cancelled due to COVID 19

June 2 David Kennedy, Stanford Professor of History, Emeritus; Founder of the Bill Lane Center for the American West

The Transcontinental Railroad at 150: Reflections on the History of the American West NOTE: this lecture is cancelled due to COVID 19


Fall/ Winter 2019-2020

September 17 Leslie Dewan, National Geographic Emerging Explorer; CEO of Tailfin, a conservation technology company

A New Approach to Nuclear Power

October 1 Dolores Davison, Professor and Chair, Departments of Women’s Studies, Foothill College

Celebrating 100 Years of American Suffrage

October 15 Thomas Fingar, Shorenstein Asia Pacific Research Center Scholar

Getting US China Policy Right

November 5 Carol Berkin, Former Presidential Professor of History, Baruch College

Myths of the American Revolution

November 19 Patrick HuntNational Lecturer for the Archeological Institute of America’s Stanford Society


Hannibal’s Secret Weapon

December 3 Michael McFaul, Former Ambassador to Russia

An American Ambassador in Putin’s Russia

January 14 Victoria Johnson, Associate Professor of Urban Policy and Planning, Hunter College, City University of New York

Founding America’s First Botanical Garden

Winter/Spring 2019

February 5 James Dixon, Architect and expert on architectural styles in San Francisco and the Bay Area

Victorian/Edwardian Residential Architectural Styles in San Francisco

February 19 Steven Burchik, Veteran, Author, Photographer

Compass and a Camera: One Soldier’s View of the Vietnam War

March 5 Brian Merchant, Technology journalist and author of The One Device: The Secret History of the iPhone

The World Inside the iPhone

March 19 Caroline Winterer, Anthony P. Meier Professor in the
Humanities and Director of the Stanford Humanities Center

The Remarkable Genius of Benjamin Franklin

April 2 Elliot Engel, Emeritus English Professor, University of North Carolina, North Carolina State, and Duke University

Shakespeare 400 Years Later: More Alive Than Ever

April 16 Tomas Jimenez, Associate Professor of Sociology and Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, Stanford University

Making Sense of Immigration Hysteria in the Nation of

May 7 Megan Smolenyak, Genealogist and Author

No Man Left Behind (Bringing our Soldiers Home from WWI, WWII, Korea, and Vietnam)

May 21 Andrew Fraknoi, Emeritus Chair, Astronomy Department,
Foothill College

Celebrating Stephen Hawking: His Amazing Life and Scientific Work

June 4 Richard Kogan, Julliard-trained concert pianist and Harvard-educated psychiatrist

The Mind and Music of George Gershwin

Fall/Winter 2018-2019

September 18 Janine Zacharia, Carlos Kelly McClatchy Lecturer, Stanford Department of Communication, former Jerusalem Bureau Chief for the Washington Post

The Era of Noise: From Fake News to the Future of Journalism

October 2 Chris Bliss, Tonight Show comedian, TED speaker, and Bill of Rights advocate

Comedy is Translation

October 16 Allison Hobbs, Associate History Professor and Director of African and African American Studies at Stanford University

A Chosen Exile: A History of Racial Passing in American Life

November 6 Joseph Luzzi, Author and Professor of Comparative Literature at Bard College

The Presidential Library: Books That Shaped Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Roosevelt, and Other Commanders-in-Chief

November 20 Thomas Sanger, Author and Journalist

The Athena Story: The Forgotten Tale of a Passenger Ship Torpedoed on the First Day of WWII

December 4 Gregory Boyle, Founder, Homeboy Industries, the largest gang-intervention, rehabilitation. and re-entry program in the world

Lessons from the Field: Kinship as an Intervention

January 15 Laura Ling, Award-winning journalist and co-author of Somewhere Inside: One Sister’s Captivity in North Korea and the Other’s Fight to Bring Her Home

Journey of Hope