We came

Attendees
447
Connectors
80

447 Stanford alumni and guests connected in Sacramento, and 80 Connectors helped make it happen.

We saw

Who were the stars of Stanford+Connects? Professors, President Hennessy... and you!

We connected

Who did you connect with? Find and tag your friends!

Stay connected

The event may be over but your connections have only just begun. Explore the many ways you can keep learning from, and connecting with, your Stanford community.

Sacramento Connectors smile for the camera.

Schedule — Saturday, May 9, 2015

12:30 p.m.

CHECK IN & MEET UP

Pick up your name tag, grab some coffee and a light bite, and start connecting with your fellow alums.

1:00 p.m.

FIND A SEAT

1:15 p.m.

WELCOME

Howard E. Wolf, ’80, Vice President for Alumni Affairs and President, Stanford Alumni Association

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Howard has led the Stanford Alumni Association and its staff since 2001. He earned his bachelor's degree in psychology, with distinction, from Stanford in 1980 and his MBA from Harvard in 1985. Before his appointment as Vice President for Alumni Affairs and President, Stanford Alumni Association, he worked as both an entrepreneur and business manager in the publishing and commercial real estate development and management industries. An active alum and volunteer, as well as an avid Stanford athletics fan, he received the Stanford Associates Outstanding Achievement Award in 2000. In addition to his Alumni Association role, Howard is one of eight officers of the University and part of its senior management team, with particular responsibility for advising the University's president and the provost on alumni affairs.

PRESIDENTIAL REMARKS AND Q&A

John L. Hennessy, President, Stanford University

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President of Stanford University since 2000, John L. Hennessy is the inaugural holder of the Bing Presidential Professorship. He joined the faculty in 1977 and since then has served as chair of computer science, dean of the School of Engineering and provost. A pioneer in computer architecture, his technology revolutionized the computer industry by increasing performance while reducing costs. He has lectured and published widely and co-authored two textbooks on computer architecture design. Dr. Hennessy has received numerous honors, including the 2000 IEEE John von Neumann Medal, a 2004 NEC C&C Prize for lifetime achievement in computer science and engineering, a 2005 Founders Award from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the 2012 IEEE Medal of Honor, IEEE's highest award.

2:15 p.m.

SPECIAL GUESTS

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy in conversation with Law School Dean M. Elizabeth Magill

Anthony M. Kennedy, '58, P '86, '88, '90, is an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States

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Anthony M. Kennedy was born in 1936 in Sacramento, California, and this was his home for many years. He and his wife, Mary, who is also a native of that city, were residents there when they moved to Washington, DC in 1987.

Justice Kennedy practiced law in San Francisco beginning in 1961 and then returned to Sacramento, where he had a general practice. He was appointed to the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit by President Gerald Ford in 1975.  He was then the youngest appellate judge in the United States, and, at that time, was the third youngest in history to be appointed to a federal appellate bench.  Nominated by President Ronald Reagan to the Supreme Court of the United States, he was confirmed in 1988, and has served as Associate Justice since that time. He has authored a number of opinions for the Court on some of the significant legal issues of our time.

Justice Kennedy was educated at Stanford, the London School of Economics, and the Harvard Law School.  He holds an A.B. with great distinction from Stanford University and an LL.B. with cum laude from the Harvard Law School.

In California, during his practice and his years on the bench, he taught the evening course in Constitutional Law at the Pacific McGeorge School of Law. And for many years he has taught a course in Austria at The University of Salzburg entitled “Fundamental Rights in Europe and the United States.” He has also taught Law and Literature. 

Justice Kennedy has lectured in law schools and universities throughout the United States and in many other parts of the world.  He visits and teaches in China.  He represented the United States on the United Nations Commission for Empowerment of the Poor.

Among the honors and awards he has received are the John Marshall Award from the American Bar Association; the Lewis Powell Award from the American Inns of Court; the Thomas Jefferson Award from the University of Virginia; and the Learned Hand Award from the Bar Association of the City of New York. He is one of the few justices in the history of the Court to have received the American Bar Association Medal.

 

M. Elizabeth Magill, Richard E. Lang Professor of Law and Dean

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M. Elizabeth Magill, is the law school's 13th dean. An award-winning scholar and expert in administrative law and constitutional structure, Dean Magill teaches administrative law, constitutional law, and food and drug law. Before coming to Stanford, Dean Magill was on the faculty at the University of Virginia School of Law for 15 years, serving most recently as vice dean, the Joseph Weintraub-Bank of America Distinguished Professor of Law, and the Elizabeth D. and Richard A. Merrill Professor. A member of the American Law Institute, she served as a fellow in the Program in Law and Public Affairs at Princeton University, was a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, and was the Thomas Jefferson Visiting Fellow at Downing College, University of Cambridge.

2:45 p.m.

BREAK

3:00 p.m.

EVENT HOST

Leticia Britos Cavagnaro, PhD ’11 is the deputy director of the National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation (Epicenter) and a lecturer at the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (d.school).

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Britos Cavagnaro teaches students of all disciplines how to build their creative confidence to become engines of innovation in teams and organizations. She obtained her PhD in developmental biology from the School of Medicine and is a former member of the Research in Education & Design Lab (REDlab) at Stanford’s Graduate School of Education. She has taught design thinking, creativity and innovation to hundreds of teachers and students of all ages, as well as corporate and nonprofit leaders around the world. Last summer, she engaged thousands of people from more than 130 countries in an experiential Design Thinking Action Lab online course via Stanford Online

Micro Lectures

These bite-size lectures will get your brain buzzing.

The Racetrack as Classroom

J. Christian Gerdes is an associate professor of mechanical engineering, director of the Center for Automotive Research (CARS) and director of the Revs Program at Stanford.

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Professor Gerdes' laboratory studies how cars move, how humans drive cars and how to design future cars that work cooperatively with the driver or drive themselves. When not teaching on campus, he can often be found at the racetrack with students, instrumenting historic race cars or trying out their latest prototypes for the future. Vehicles in the lab include X1, an entirely student-built test vehicle, and Shelley, an Audi TT-S capable of turning a competitive lap time around the track without a human driver. Professor Gerdes and his team have been recognized with a number of awards including the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the Ralph Teetor award from SAE International and the Rudolf Kalman Award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Data Visualization for the Humanities

Maya Krishnan, ’15, is a 2015 Rhodes Scholarship recipient working at the intersection of philosophy and technology.

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Maya is a senior from Rockville, Maryland majoring in philosophy and minoring in computer science. As the lead technical developer for the POLIS project, she helped users generate maps and statistics relating to Greek and Roman history. She is currently writing her thesis on the relationship between mathematics, meaning and history in Kant. Maya received the 2014 Deans’ Award for Academic Achievement, given to extraordinary undergraduates for their intellectual accomplishments. She is an oboist who has performed with the Stanford Symphony Orchestra.

Brie Linkenhoker, MA ’01, PhD ’03, is the director of Worldview Stanford.

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Professor Bill Newsome is a leading investigator in sensory and cognitive neuroscience and teaches graduate and medical courses in neuroscience, and co-teaches an undergraduate course on social and ethical issues in the neurosciences. The long-term goal of his lab’s research is to understand the neuronal processes that mediate visual perception and visually guided behavior.

Brie Linkenhoker, MA ’01, PhD ’03, is the director of Worldview Stanford a new program that creates interdisciplinary learning experiences about the forces shaping the future to help prepare leaders for the strategic challenges ahead. After training in neuroscience, she moved to the private sector, where she applied what she had learned about decision making to real world problems faced by companies, national governments and non-profits. She returned to Stanford two years ago to start Worldview Stanford, which aims to move the new knowledge being generated at Stanford into the hands of decision-makers who need it most.

Musical Performance: “Music of the Night” from "The Phantom of the Opera"

Matthew Billman, ’15, is a pop-classical crossover singer/composer and undergraduate in the human biology program.

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Matthew is a human biology major straddling the fields of music and medicine. When not writing and performing music with the Fleet Street Singers, Matthew splits his time between the Margaret Fuller DevBio Lab, the MemAud stage (he starred last year as Jean Valjean in the Ram’s Head production of "Les Miserables"), and the CCRMA recording studio. Following graduation, Matthew will pursue a career as a surgeon and/or a pop/classical crossover singer. (Hopefully “and.”)

3:45 p.m.

Break

4:15 p.m.

Seminars

Choose one of three in-depth seminars for an intellectual deep dive.

DESIGN THINKING: Predict the Future by Inventing It

Leticia Britos Cavagnaro, PhD ’11 is the deputy director of the National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation (Epicenter) and a lecturer at the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (d.school).

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Want to be a better problem solver? Design thinking is a creative process driving a culture of human-centered innovation in organizations. This hands-on workshop puts you at the center of a d.school experience to learn design thinking skills and mindsets that can be applied to every discipline, at every stage of life.

Lecturer Britos Cavagnaro teaches students of all disciplines how to build their creative confidence to become engines of innovation in teams and organizations. Britos Cavagnaro obtained her PhD in developmental biology from the School of Medicine and is a former member of the Research in Education & Design Lab (REDlab) at Stanford’s Graduate School of Education. She has taught design thinking, creativity and innovation to hundreds of teachers and students of all ages, as well as corporate and nonprofit leaders around the world. In 2013, she engaged thousands of people from over 130 countries in an experiential design thinking online course through Stanford Online

NEUROSCIENCE: Brains, Biology and Free Will

Bill Newsome is the Harman Family Provostial Professor, director of the Stanford Neurosciences Institute, and professor of neurobiology and, by courtesy, of psychology.

Brie Linkenhoker, MA ’01, PhD ’03, is the director of Worldview Stanford.

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What really shapes our decisions: bottom-up, subconscious influences, or top-down, conscious goals and desires? Bill Newsome and Brie Linkenhoker discuss how research in neuroscience, psychology and philosophy is shedding new light on this age-old question, and why it matters in law, economics and public policy.

A leading investigator in sensory and cognitive neuroscience, Professor Newsome teaches graduate and medical courses in neuroscience, and co-teaches an undergraduate course on social and ethical issues in the neurosciences. The long-term goal of his lab’s research is to understand the neuronal processes that mediate visual perception and visually guided behavior. Professor Newsome’s honors include the Rank Prize for Optoelectronics, the Spencer Award for highly original contributions to research in neurobiology, the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award of the American Psychological Association, the Dan David Prize and the Karl Lashley Award of the American Philosophical Society.

Brie Linkenhoker, MA ’01, PhD ’03, is the director of Worldview Stanford, a new program that creates interdisciplinary learning experiences about the forces shaping the future to help prepare leaders for the strategic challenges ahead. After training in neuroscience, she moved to the private sector, where she applied what she had learned about decision making to real world problems faced by companies, national governments and non-profits. She returned to Stanford two years ago to start Worldview Stanford, which aims to move the new knowledge being generated at Stanford into the hands of decision-makers who need it most. Worldview Stanford's courses in 2015 will include The Science of Decision Making and Environmental Risk and Resilience.

 

 

Chris Gerdes photo

SELF-DRIVING CARS: Should Automated Vehicles Drive Like Humans or Robots?

J. Christian Gerdes is an associate professor of mechanical engineering, director of the Center for Automotive Research (CARS) and director of the Revs Program at Stanford.

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What does it take for a car to actually drive itself? Professor Chris Gerdes and his team bring engineers together with lawyers, philosophers and race car drivers to answer this question. Learn more about this cutting-edge research and engage in a conversation around the societal, ethical and engineering aspects of automated vehicles.

Professor Gerdes' laboratory studies how cars move, how humans drive cars and how to design future cars that work cooperatively with the driver or drive themselves. When not teaching on campus, he can often be found at the racetrack with students, instrumenting historic race cars or trying out their latest prototypes for the future. Vehicles in the lab include X1, an entirely student-built test vehicle, and Shelley, an Audi TT-S capable of turning a competitive lap time around the track without a human driver. Professor Gerdes and his team have been recognized with a number of awards including the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the Ralph Teetor award from SAE International and the Rudolf Kalman Award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

5:15 p.m.

Break

5:30 p.m.

Water Micro Lectures

This special block of micro lectures includes a panel of water experts.

The Legacy of John Wesley Powell, Water Master of the West

David Kennedy, ’63, is the Donald J. McLachlan Professor of History, emeritus and director emeritus of the Bill Lane Center for the American West.

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Professor Kennedy has long taught both undergraduate and graduate courses ranging from the 20th-century history of the United States to the comparative development of democracy in Europe and America. His research is notable for its integration of economic and cultural analysis with social and political history. His book Freedom From Fear was a main selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club and the History Book Club and winner of the Pulitzer and Francis Parkman Prizes. In 1988, Professor Kennedy received the Richard W. Lyman Award for exceptional volunteer service to alumni.

Seeing Into Earth: Imaging Our Groundwater Aquifers

Rosemary Knight, PhD ’85, is the George L. Harrington Professor in the School of Earth Sciences and senior fellow, by courtesy, at the Woods Institute for the Environment.

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Her research focuses on the development of geophysical methods to understand what’s occurring in the top 100 meters of Earth. By acquiring images of the near-surface region, researchers can monitor systems and extract information to help inform decisions regarding the evaluation and management of groundwater resources. In 2000, Professor Knight developed and still currently teaches The Water Course, where students complete projects describing the source, quantity, and quality of water in their hometowns to gain a perspective on water-related issues. The focus of her teaching has always been the education of those who are not Earth science majors. To that end, she pioneered I-Earth (Introduction to Planet Earth), a set of courses exploring the intersection of natural and human systems.

Increasing the Value of Water Diversions in California

David Freyberg, MS '77, PhD ’81, is an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering and senior fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment and, by courtesy, of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies.

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A hydrologist and water resources specialist, Professor Freyberg studies reservoir sedimentation and hydrology, hydrologic ecosystem services, summer drying of Pacific coast intermittent streams, tropical rainfall and throughfall, surface water-ground water interactions, especially in reservoir/sediment systems, and scaling and spatial distribution of recycled water systems. He has received the Stanford School of Engineering Tau Beta Pi Award for excellence in undergraduate teaching twice.

6:30 p.m.

Reception

Keep the connections going! Enjoy drinks and heavy hors d’oeuvres with new Stanford friends of all ages.

Look Who Connected

First Name Maiden Name Last Name Degree(s) Parent Year(s) City State
Jules Keane '94 Davis CA
Priscilla Agbeo '18 Chicago IL
Dave Gustafson '02, MS '04 Sacramento CA
Paula Shoemake Rhoades '95 Elk Grove CA
Michael Ashcraft '71 P '99, '02 Meadow Vista CA

Special thanks to all the Stanford+Connects Sacramento Connectors without whose help this event would not be possible. See all local connectors.

Student Ambassadors

No Stanford event would be complete without students. That’s why these star scholars—who also happen to be athletes, activists, entrepreneurs, artists and so on—were invited to join you as your student ambassadors for the day. They’re looking forward to connecting with you, so don’t be shy!

Priscilla Agbeo

Priscilla Agbeo, ’18, is a freshman with a passion for water purification and sustainability; she plans to major in civil environmental engineering with a minor in African/African American studies. When not in the classroom, Priscilla can be found writing and performing spoken word poetry, mentoring middle school students involved in the East Palo Alto Stanford Academy, and lending a voice as a member of Stanford's Black Student Union. She is also a participant of the Leland Scholars Program.

Graciela Arango

Graciela Arango, ’15, is a senior majoring in science, technology and society who recently began a graduate program in management science and engineering. When not in class, Graciela can be found playing around with post-its at the d.school, enjoying a cup of ginger tea at Coupa Cafe, or conducting studies on autonomous vehicles at the Stanford Automotive Innovation Lab. Originally from Panama (and a frequent traveler), Graciela enjoys exploring diverse cultures and speaks Spanish, French, and Portuguese. In the future, Graciela hopes to find a way to combine her interests in design, innovation, strategic planning, and Latin America.

Maryam Attai

Maryam Attai, PhD ’18, is a third year PhD student at the Stanford Graduate School of Education studying race, inequality and language education. She is interested in juvenile justice reform, and is currently working on a literature review examining the history of juvenile justice in California. She is also part of the first cohort of Experience Assistants at the d.school. While at Stanford, Maryam has enjoyed taking part in theatre and performance studies courses and recently performed in a graduate student production, Parts for Women Written by Men.

Akshai Baskaran

Akshai Baskaran, ’15, is a senior majoring in chemical engineering and is writing a CISAC honors thesis on China's water and energy security challenges. Akshai has been a member of Stanford Mock Trial, Stanford Consulting, dorm staff, and the sophomore and junior class cabinets. Akshai is currently a member of the ASSU Executive Cabinet and is leading the ASSU Energy & Environmental Committee.  Akshai hails from Kennewick, WA, loves Stanford Football, and is interested energy technology and policy.

Matthew Billman

Matthew Billman, ’15, is a human biology major straddling the fields of music and medicine. When not writing and performing music with the Fleet Street Singers, Matthew splits his time between the Margaret Fuller DevBio Lab, the MemAud stage (he starred last year as Jean Valjean in the Ram’s Head production of Les Miserables), and the CCRMA recording studio. Following graduation, Matthew will pursue a career as a surgeon and/or a pop/classical crossover singer. (Hopefully “and.”)

Nikhil Goel

Nikhil Goel, ’18, is a freshman considering a symbolic systems major and fascinated by the intersection between computer science and the human mind. Nikhil is a proud member of the Business Association for Stanford Entrepreneurial Students (BASES) and Raagapella, Stanford's all-male South Asian/Western fusion a cappella group. A Californian to the core—born and raised in Silicon Valley—Nikhil loves exploring new music of all genres, immersing himself in the literature of different cultures, and using non sequiturs. In the future, Nikhil hopes to learn seven languages, go into outer space, and continue creating unrealistic goals for himself.

Bryant Johnson

Bryant Johnson, ’17, is a sophomore majoring in political science. A native of Covington, Georgia, Bryant has immersed himself in Stanford culture. During his first year, a class called “The German Tradition of Bildung or How to Be a Global Citizen” has helped him shape his own unique perspectives about education and what it means to be an independent thinker. He is a Program Assistant at the Black Community Services Center, a member of the Stanford Blyth Fund, and still finds time to play the piano for the Stanford Gospel Choir.

Maya Krishnan

Maya Krishnan, ’15, is a senior from Rockville, Maryland majoring in philosophy and minoring in computer science. As the lead technical developer for the POLIS project, she helped users generate maps and statistics relating to Greek and Roman history. She is currently writing her thesis on the relationship between mathematics, meaning and history in Kant. Maya received the 2014 Deans’ Award for Academic Achievement, given to extraordinary undergraduates for their intellectual accomplishments. She is an oboist who has performed with the Stanford Symphony Orchestra.

Vincent Laurense

Vincent Laurense, PhD ’19, is a first year PhD student in mechanical engineering. During his studies in aerospace engineering at Delft University of Technology (The Netherlands), he worked as an intern at the Nissan Advanced Technology Center in Japan. After his thesis on modeling human control behavior and an honors program on automotive dynamics & safety, he worked as a research trainee on the development of advanced driver support systems in San Diego, and later on connected vehicles in The Netherlands. In addition, he worked as a data engineer for racing teams. At Stanford, he investigates how to control an autonomous race car at its physical limits, to make the self-driving car of the future a safer driver than a professional race car driver. When not in class, in the Dynamic Design Lab, or on the race track, Vincent might be found mountain biking, swimming, or running.

Lauren "Motown" Phillips

Lauren “Motown” Phillips, ’17, is an art history major who hails from the one and only Detroit, Michigan. She is on the Internal Development team for the Stanford Student Alumni Council and a member of Pi Beta Phi. Her proudest achievement so far at Stanford has been co-chairing the 16th Annual Black Student Union Youth Empowerment Conference. On campus, she can likely be found roaming around the Anderson Collection or the McMurtry Building during the day, or chowing on chicken fingers and waffle fries from the Axe & Palm at night.

Selby Sturzenegger

Selby Sturzenegger, ’18, is an undeclared freshman considering a major in international relations but looking forward to experiencing the many unique courses Stanford offers. Selby is an avid Cardinal sports fan who especially enjoys firing the cannon at Stanford Stadium as a member and the financial officer of the Axe Committee. When Selby is not in the pool with the Stanford Club Swim Team, you’re likely to find her in the gym or walking The Dish, listening to country music. A member of the Stanford Student Alumni Council, Selby enjoys organizing events that connect current undergraduates with alumni, expanding the Stanford community we know and love.

Andrea Sy

Andrea Sy, ’15, is a senior majoring in management science and engineering is using her last quarter at Stanford to reflect on the different opportunities she's had on campus—from leading BASES (the largest student entrepreneurship organization), to being a teaching assistant to GSB Professor Jennifer Aaker, to competing in intramural volleyball, to joining the Sigma Psi Zeta Sorority Inc. As an international student from the Philippines, her experience as a Data Science Intern at LinkedIn last summer inspired her to find different ways to harness innovative technology and scale it in emerging markets. She loves drinking drip coffee, traveling, dancing, and volleyball.

Jimmy Zhang

Jimmy Zhang, ’18, is a sophomore double-majoring in economics and mathematical and computational science. On campus, he is involved with the Hong Kong Student Association, Pilipino-American Student Union, Stanford Newtype Anime Club, and Stanford Students Environmental Consulting. He also works part-time during the school year as a Zero Waste Intern through the Sustainable Stanford Internship Program, working to increase waste diversion among the various preschools and elementary schools on campus. After completing a Stanford in Government Fellowship last summer, he worked as a Peer Advisor for the Haas Center of Public Service, spreading the word and offering advice about the many public service opportunities available to Stanford students. Jimmy loves traveling, and spent a few weeks last summer doing field research in rural China with the Freeman Spogli Institute. He is excited to do similar work again this summer in Chile!

 

About Stanford+Connects

Stanford+Connects was a 16-city event tour that helped alumni re-experience Stanford (minus the midterms), multiply their networks and stretch their brain in infinite ways.