Brent Schlender, Co-founder, Compass Conferences
Peter Petre, Senior editor-at-large, FORTUNE
Mariette DiChristina, Editor in Chief, Scientific American
Compass Summit, a forum for true interaction and exchange, examines some of today’s most pressing problems through the lens of global citizenship, recognizing that human ingenuity is an unlimited resource. Guided by NPR’s Ira Flatow, an intimate group of some of the world's best thinkers and doers convened along the rugged Palos Verdes coastline on Oct 23-26, 2011 at Terranea Resort to engage in meaningful conversation, ask questions, and challenge ideas -- we invite you to join in the conversation.
Mariette DiChristina oversees Scientific American, ScientificAmerican.com, Scientific American Mind and all news stand special editions. She is the eighth person and first female to assume the top post in Scientific American's 165-year history. A science journalist for more than 20 years, she first came to Scientific American in 2001 as its executive editor. She was named an AAAS Fellow in 2011. She was also the president (in 2009 and 2010) of the 2,500-member National Association of Science Writers.
She is a former adjunct professor in the graduate Science, Health and Environmental Reporting program at New York University. DiChristina is a frequent lecturer and has appeared at the New York Academy of Sciences, California Academy of Sciences, 92nd Street Y in New York, Yale University and New York University among many others.
Previously, she spent nearly 14 years at Popular Science in positions culminating as executive editor.
Her work in writing and overseeing articles about space topics helped garner that magazine the Space Foundation's 2001 Douglas S. Morrow Public Outreach Award. In spring 2005 she was Science Writer in Residence at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her chapter on science editing appears in the second edition of A Field Guide for Science Writers. She is former chair of Science Writers in New York (2001 to 2004) and a member of the American Society of Magazine Editors and the Society of Environmental Journalists. DiChristina was honored by New York's Italian Heritage and Culture Committee in October 2009 for her contributions as an Italian American to science journalism and education in New York City. In January 2010, she was honored by the National Organization of Italian American Women as one as one of its "Three Wise Women" of 2009.
Ira Flatow: Radio and television journalist and host of National Public Radio's Science Friday.
Veteran National Public Radio (NPR) science correspondent and award-winning TV journalist Ira Flatow is the host of Talk Of The Nation: Science Friday. He anchors the show each Friday, bringing radio and Internet listeners world wide a lively, informative discussion on science, technology, health, space and the environment. Ira is also founder and president of The Science Friday Initiative, a 501 (c)(3) non-profit company dedicated to supporting the Science Friday show, as well as engaging and creating scientific discussion among adolescents and young adults. Flatow's interest in things scientific began in boyhood - he almost burned down his mother's bathroom trying to recreate a biology class experiment. "I was the proverbial kid who spent hours in the basement experimenting with electronic gizmos, and then entering them in high school science fairs," Flatow says. Mixing his passion for science with a tendency toward being "a bit of a ham," Flatow describes his work as the challenge "to make science and technology a topic for discussion around the dinner table."
He has shared that enthusiasm with public radio listeners for more than 35 years. As a reporter and then News Director at WBFO-FM/Buffalo, New York, Flatow began reporting at the station while studying for his engineering degree at State University of New York in Buffalo. As NPR's science correspondent from 1971 to 1986, Flatow found himself reporting from the Kennedy Space Center, Three Mile Island, Antarctica and the South Pole. In one memorable NPR report, Flatow took former All Things Considered host Susan Stamberg into a closet to crunch Wint-O-Green Lifesavers, proving they spark in the dark.
His most recent book is entitled Present At The Future : From Evolution to Nanotechnology, Candid and Controversial Conversations on Science And Nature. It follows on the heels of They All Laughed ... From Light Bulbs to Lasers: The Fascinating Stories Behind the Great Inventions That Have Changed Our Lives.
On television, Flatow has discussed the latest cutting edge science stories on a variety of programs, including the new digital Cablevision program Maximum Science . He is also host of the four-part PBS series Big Ideas produced by WNET in New York. His numerous TV credits include six years as host and writer for the Emmy-award-winning Newton's Apple on PBS, science reporter for CBS This Morning, Westinghouse, and cable's CNBC. He wrote, produced and hosted Transistorized!, an hour-long documentary about the history of the transistor, which aired on PBS. He has talked science on many TV talk shows including Merv Griffin, Today, Charlie Rose, and Oprah. He is currently exploring new and better ways of bringing science news to radio, TV and the Internet.
On the Internet, Flatow has hosted numerous science related Web Casts for Discovery Online and the American Museum of Natural History in New York. His Science Friday Kids' Connection web pages won the award for one of the top 500 web sites in the country given out by Home PC Magazine. His Podcasts are among the most listened to on the Internet, frequently in the top-ten of all downloads on the iTunes web site.
In print, Ira has authored articles for various magazines ranging from Woman's Day to ESPN Magazine to American Lawyer. His commentary has appeared in The Los Angeles Times, and Current newspapers.
Public speaking and moderating discussions are a regular part of his schedule. As a host, he has "emceed" many public events, including the 100th Anniversary Celebration of the Science Museum of Minnesota (2007). He has spoken at Rockefeller University, the World Economic Forum, Sun Microsystems, Hewlett Packard, Calvin Academy, Cal Tech, MIT, Harvard, University of Wisconsin, OSHU, National Inventor's Hall of Fame and the Kentucky Author Forum. In 2004, Ira was resident scholar at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute.
His recent honors include: National Science Teachers Association Faraday Science Communicator Award (2007), National Science Board Public Service Award (2005), World Economic Forum Media Fellowshipo (2005), Elizabeth Wood Writing (2002), AAAS Journalism award (2000), Brady Washburn Award (2000), the Carl Sagan Award (1999).
Senior editor-at-large Peter Petre oversees coverage of infotech, biotech, medicine, industrial technology, and science at FORTUNE.
Petre joined FORTUNE in 1979 as a reporter covering computers and office automation.
Petre co-authored It Doesn't Take a Hero with General H. Norman Schwarzkopf, which sold more than one million hardcover copies and was on The New York Times bestseller list for 25 weeks. He also co-authored another New York Times bestseller Father, Son & Co.: My Life at IBM and Beyond with Thomas J. Watson, Jr.
Petre has a B.A. from the University of Iowa and an M.A. in comparative literature from Johns Hopkins University.
Brent Schlender is a Writer/Editor/Consultant who is a former FORTUNE Magazine Editor at Large. He also has served as the Deputy Bureau Chief of The Wall Street Journal.