Science Fellows Program Faculty

The world-class faculty for PopTech’s Science Fellows Program generously share with the Fellows their deep expertise in leadership, collaboration, communications and public engagement.


Moran Cerf

Moran Cerf
New York University, UCLA, and CalTech
Moran Cerf is a neuroscientist who has shown how to project patients’ thoughts onto a screen in front of their eyes by implanting electrodes deep inside their brains and reading the activity of cells. Patients can use the feedback from the electrodes to regulate their own emotions and alter decisions. This research sheds light on the mechanisms that are involved in thinking or imagining a concept in our own mind, and the ways by which we ponder upon memories.


Michael Duarte

Michael Duarte
Duarte Design
In his 18+ years at Duarte Design, Michael has worn many hats ranging from production artist, project manager, account manager, multimedia producer to emcee. In each role, Michael has leveraged his love of problem solving to help his clients develop innovative solutions for their communication needs and brings his passion for learning and facilitation to the role of instructor. Michael has a degree in psychology, is a lifelong audio enthusiast and a constant technology “tinkerer.”


Sarah Fortune

Sarah Fortune
Harvard School of Public Health
Sarah Fortune, a 2010 PopTech Science Fellow, is an Assistant Professor of Immunology and Infectious Diseases at the Harvard School of Public Health, where she studies the pathogenesis of tuberculosis. Specifically, her laboratory seeks to understand the molecular basis and importance of bacterial heterogeneity in shaping the outcome of infection. Fortune is supported by awards from HHMI, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, and a New Innovator Award from the National Institutes of Health.


Chloe Holderness

Chloe Holderness
Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation
Chloe B. Holderness is the Managing Director of the Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation. The Foundation’s mission is to engage Lex Mundi’s global network of leading independent law firms to support and empower those working to bring about high impact and sustainable social change that improves communities and lives. The Foundation achieves its mission through two core programs. The first program utilizes Lex Mundi lawyers to provide critical pro bono legal services to the world’s leading social entrepreneurs (www.lexmundiprobono.org). The second program is a recently launched unique online legal community, LawForChange, that provides a one-stop source of legal information and resources specifically designed to support, strengthen and empower the U.S. (and soon global) social sector (www.lawforchange.org).


Kathy Hudson

Kathy Hudson
National Institutes of Health
Kathy Hudson is the deputy director for science, outreach, and policy at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and oversees the activities of the communications, legislative, and science policy offices. She works with NIH leadership to develop and implement strategic and scientific initiatives, and is the liaison with the Department of Health and Human Services. She represents the NIH in high-level collaborations and negotiations with other federal agencies and the White House, as well as with private research institutions, patient voluntary organizations, and professional societies.


Robert Metcalfe

Robert Metcalfe
The University of Texas at Austin
Bob Metcalfe is an Internet pioneer, starting at MIT, Harvard, Xerox Parc, and Stanford 1970-1978. In 1973, at Xerox Parc, he invented Ethernet, of which over a billion wired and WiFi ports are now shipped annually. He founded billion-dollar networking company 3Com in 1979, now after 30 years part of HP. He spent the 1990s as a publisher-pundit at IDG/InfoWorld and the 2000s as a general partner of Polaris Venture Partners. In 2005, he received the National Medal of Technology for “leadership in the invention, standardization, and commercialization of Ethernet.” He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a Life Trustee of MIT. Since 2011, he has been Professor of Innovation and Murchison Fellow of Free Enterprise in the Cockrell School of Engineering of The University of Texas at Austin.


Tom Neilssen

Tom Neilssen
BrightSight Group
Tom is the co-founder of the BrightSight Group. He has spent the past 30 years representing leading thought leaders and celebrities. Previously, Tom was one of the senior agents at the Leigh Bureau, where he advised and helped guide the careers of many of the top performers including, Malcolm Gladwell, Alex Haley, Bill George, Lester Thurow, Bill Schneider and Linda Wertheimer. In the early 1980’s Tom was an agent at BWI, a lecture/entertainment company that specialized in speakers for the college market and represented bands for the club market.


Joe Palca

Joe Palca
National Public Radio
Joe Palca is a science correspondent for NPR. Since joining NPR in 1992, Palca has covered a range of science topics — everything from biomedical research to astronomy. In addition to his science reporting, Palca is backup host for Talk of the Nation Science Friday. Palca began his journalism career in television in 1982, working as a health producer for the CBS affiliate in Washington, DC. In 1986, he left television for a seven-year stint as a print journalist, first as the Washington news editor for Nature, and then as a senior correspondent for Science Magazine. Palca has won numerous awards, including the National Academies Communications Award, the Science-in-Society Award of the National Association of Science Writers, the American Chemical Society James T. Grady-James H. Stack Award for Interpreting Chemistry for the Public, the American Association for the Advancement of Science Journalism Prize, and the Ohio State Award. Palca was president of the National Association of Science Writers from 1999-2000.


Soren Wheeler

Soren Wheeler
RadioLab
Soren Wheeler is the senior producer for WNYC’s RadioLab. He has a masters degree in science writing from Johns Hopkins University, has been a project coordinator at the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and has developed workshops and online courses for K-16 science and math teachers. At RadioLab, he produces and edits segments, manages the production staff, oversees development of future content and coordinates RadioLab’s segments on NPR’s Morning Edition. Wheeler has won awards for his work on segments about the periodic table and statistical understanding.


Lisa Witter

Lisa Witter
Fenton
Lisa Witter is an experienced executive, social entrepreneur, communications strategist, writer and commentator. As partner and chief change officer of Fenton, the largest, global, public interest communications firm, she heads up the firm’s work in innovation and co-leads the practices in women’s issues, health, philanthropy and global affairs for clients such as The Elders, Atlantic Philanthropies, Nobel Peace-Prize-winner Wangari Maathai, the Ford Foundation, the International Criminal Court, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, National Geographic, the American Medical Association, the David and Lucille Packard Foundation, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and the Avon Foundation.


Andrew Zolli

Andrew Zolli
PopTech
Andrew Zolli is a futures researcher who studies the complex forces at the intersection of technology, sustainability and global society that are shaping our future. He is the Curator and Executive Director of PopTech, has served as a Fellow of the National Geographic Society, and his work and ideas regularly appear in dozens of leading publications and media outlets. Andrew’s book Resilience: Why Things Bounce Back was published in 2012 by Free Press.