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Brentwood School’s Guest Lecture Series to host Ray Kurzweil on January 14, 2011

In the fall of 1996, a speaker series was established in memory of former History and Political Science Chair, John Hutson, a passionate historian and beloved teacher. The series presents distinguished speakers each year, providing students, parents, faculty, and alumni, as well as community members, with unique opportunities to hear from highly notable, world-renowned authorities in literature, journalism, science, the arts, history, philosophy, and politics. This year we are honored to present Ray Kurzweil.

Past speakers have included Maya Angelou, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Frank McCourt, Jeanne Kirkpatrick, Edward Albee, Leah Rabin, Kurt Vonnegut, Amy Tan, Leon Panetta, Joyce Carol Oates, William Styron, Tony Kushner, Edward O. Wilson, Stephen Carter, Alice Walker, Alice Sebold, Eric Schlosser, Margaret Atwood, Daniel Pink, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Lisa See.

Visiting scholars also work with students and faculty in classroom visits and in assembly presentations. Past visiting scholars have included: U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins, Tobias Wolff, Wade Davis, Gus Lee, Luis Rodriguez, Clayborne Carson, Orville Schell, Mark Mathabane, and Sarah Culberson.

Brentwood School invites the community to hear renowned inventor, entrepreneur, author, and futurist RAY KURZWEIL, on Friday, January 14, 2011, as part of the series. Kurzweil’s presentations to diverse audiences combine wit and keen insight into contemporary issues of technology’s impact on society.

Called “the restless genius†by the Wall Street Journal, and “the ultimate thinking machine†by Forbes, Kurzweil’s ideas have been touted by fans, ranging from Bill Gates to Bill Clinton. His national best-selling book, The Singularity is Near, has achieved the #1 status on Amazon in both science and artificial intelligence.

Kurzweil is regarded as one of the leading inventors of our time. He was the principal developer of the first omni-font optical character recognition (OCR), the first print-to-speech reading machine for the blind, the first CCD flat-bed scanner, the first text-to-speech synthesizer, the first music synthesizer capable of recreating the grand piano and other orchestral instruments, and the first commercially marketed large vocabulary speech recognition. These technologies continue as market leaders in their respective industries, industries that Kurzweil pioneered.

Kurzweil received the $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize, the world’s largest award in invention and innovation, and was inducted in 2002 into the National Inventor Hall of Fame. He received the 1999 National Medal of Technology, the nation’s highest honor in technology, as well as scores of other awards, ten honorary Doctorates and honors from three U.S. presidents.

To purchase tickets, visit bwscampus.com. Tickets are $25.00 each for the general public and $10.00 each for students and teachers from other schools – when school I.D. is provided.

For tickets and more information contact: Shirley Blake (310) 889-2708 or sblake@bwscampus.com

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