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Five New Luminaries Featured on “Five Questions” Video Interviews

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Stony Brook’s video series “5 Questions With …” has released five new interviews with global thought leaders and celebrities, including actor-philanthropist Michael J. Fox and CNN medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta.

The ongoing series, part of the “In The Know” offerings created by SBU’s Office of Marketing and Communications, spotlights the university’s role in global thought leadership. Interview subjects are affiliated with or have visited the campus for student and community enrichment events and activities.

Also interviewed this month are high-tech entrepreneur Jonathan Oringer, internet pioneer Ben Shneiderman, and astrophysicist Frank Shu.

More on this month’s luminaries:

  • Michael J. Fox is an acclaimed actor and philanthropist, beloved worldwide for his acting in  Family Ties, the Back to the Future series, Spin City, and numerous award-winning roles in movies and television. During his seven years on Family Ties, he earned three Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe. Fox was diagnosed with young-onset Parkinson’s disease in 1991, and since then, he has committed himself to the campaign for increased Parkinson’s research. Fox is among the luminaries to receive honorary degrees at Stony Brook University’s 2017 Commencement. The honorary degree of Doctor of Fine Arts recognizes a career that has brought international acclaim, as well as a dedication to charitable endeavor best exemplified by the founding and stewardship of the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. The foundation is credited as the world’s largest nonprofit funder of drug development for Parkinson’s disease.
  • Sanjay Gupta  is the multiple Emmy Award-winning chief medical correspondent for CNN. Gupta, a practicing neurosurgeon, plays an integral role in CNN’s reporting on health and medical news for all of CNN’s shows domestically and internationally, and contributes to CNN.com. His medical training and public health policy experience distinguishes his reporting from war zones and natural disasters, as well as on a range of medical and scientific topics, including the Ebola outbreak, brain injury, disaster recovery, health care reform, fitness, military medicine, and HIV/AIDS. Additionally, Dr. Gupta is the host of  Vital Signs for CNN International and  Accent Health  for Turner Private Networks. In addition to his work for CNN, Gupta is a member of the staff and faculty at the Emory University School of Medicine. In Spring 2017, Dr. Gupta met with students at Stony Brook’s Center for Leadership and Service as the keynote speaker for the Graduate Student Organization’s annual lecture series.
  • Jonathan Oringer  is founder and CEO of Shutterstock and a Stony Brook University alum, Class of 1996. At SBU’s 2017 Commencement ceremony, he received a Doctor of Science for his contribution to the tech industry including the invention of one of the web’s first pop-up blockers and for creating and building Shutterstock, the global technology company which disrupted the image licensing industry. Oringer started Shutterstock with $10,000 in 2003 and became New York’s first tech billionaire  10 years later . He took the photo service public in 2012. The company started when Oringer noticed that email blasts of new products got more clicks when they included pictures, but stock photos were too expensive for advertisers to use, so he bought a camera, took 30,000 pictures and started a website that sold pictures for cheap. In 2016, Shutterstock announced an exclusive, multi-year distribution deal with BFA, a New York agency that specializes in fashion, events, and entertainment photography.
  • Ben Shneiderman  is Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Founding Director of the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory at the University of Maryland. He is a fellow of the AAAS, ACM and IEEE, and a member of the National Academy of Engineering, in recognition of his pioneering contributions to human-computer interaction and information visualization, including the direct manipulation concept, clickable web-link, touchscreen keyboards, dynamic query sliders for Spotfire, development of treemaps, innovative network visualization strategies for NodeXL, and temporal event sequence analysis for electronic health records. Shneiderman is the co-author with Catherine Plaisant of  Designing the User Interface: Strategies for Effective Human-Computer Interaction. With Stu Card and Jock Mackinlay, he co-authored  Readings in Information Visualization: Using Vision to Think. His book  Leonardo’s Laptop won the IEEE book award for Distinguished Literary Contribution. His latest book, with Derek Hansen and Marc Smith, is  Analyzing Social Media Networks with NodeXL.
  • Frank Shu  is Distinguished Professor of Physics at the University of California, San Diego. He received a Doctor of Science for his pioneering theoretical work in astrophysics at Stony Brook University’s 2017 Commencement ceremony. He has held faculty appointments at SBU and UC Berkeley. As a leader in his field, Dr. Shu has provided the world of science with many advances in how the stars are viewed and his ability to look at the galaxies for more than their beauty alone has impacted students and inspired scholars around the world. He is known for his pioneering theoretical work in a diverse set of fields, including the origin of meteorites, the birth and early evolution of stars, the process of mass transfer in close binary stars, and the structure of spiral galaxies. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the Academia Sinica in Taiwan. He received the 2009 Catherine Wolfe Bruce Gold Medal for a lifetime of achievement in astronomy from the Astronomical Society of the Pacific.

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