2019 Speakers

Keynote Presentation

Jon Meacham

Presidential historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning author

headshot Jon Meacham is a Presidential historian, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, a contributor to TIME and The New York Times, and one of America's most prominent public intellectuals. A regular commentator on television news and political programs, he is known as a skilled raconteur with a depth of knowledge about politics, religion, and current affairs. Meacham brings historical context to the issues and events impacting our daily lives.

His latest book, which made its debut at #1 on the New York Times bestsellers list, is The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels. It examines the present moment in American politics and life by looking back at critical times in U.S. history when hope overcame division and fear.

Meacham’s Presidential biography, Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush, also made its debut at #1 on the New York Times bestsellers list. The Times said, “Destiny and Power reflects the qualities of both subject and biographer: judicious, balanced, deliberative, with a deep appreciation of history and the personalities who shape it.” Meacham delivered a moving tribute at the funeral of First Lady Barbara Bush.

His book, Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power, was hailed as "masterful and intimate" by Fortune magazine. His other national bestsellers include Franklin and Winston, American Gospel, and American Lion: Andrew Jackson in the White House, which won the Pulitzer Prize in 2009.

A contributing editor at TIME, Meacham writes for the magazine’s Ideas section. He also pens “The Long View” column in The New York Times Book Review in which he “looks back at books that speak to our current historical and cultural moment.” He served as Newsweek's managing editor from 1998 to 2006 and editor from 2006 to 2010. The New York Times called him “one of the most influential editors in the news magazine business.”

Meacham has appeared on Meet The Press, The Colbert Report, and Ken Burns’ documentary series “The Roosevelts: An Intimate History.” Fox News produced an hour-long special about Meacham’s “Destiny and Power” in November 2015.

Featured Speakers

Dan’l Lewin

President and Chief Executive Officer, Computer History Museum

headshot Dan’l Lewin is a longtime Silicon Valley tech executive and industry icon who has brought financial, corporate, academic, and civic leaders together to advance emerging technology, digital transformation, and sustainability initiatives, leveraging 30-plus years of Silicon Valley leadership experience with companies that include Microsoft, NeXT, Apple, and Sony.

During his 17-year tenure at Microsoft, Lewin created groundbreaking initiatives to bring technology awareness and solutions to individuals, businesses, and organizations worldwide, launching efforts to engage the entrepreneurial and venture capital communities and leading strategic technical diplomacy efforts.

He now heads the Computer History Museum (CHM), a nonprofit organization with a four-decade history as the world’s leading institution exploring the history of computing and its ongoing impact on society. Lewin directs the strategic planning, fundraising, and ongoing operations of CHM, including those of its Exponential Center, dedicated to entrepreneurship and innovation, and Center for Software History.

Lewin serves on the boards of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, UI Labs, and StartX. He is also on the Advisory Council for the Department of Politics at Princeton University. Lewin holds an AB in politics from Princeton University.


Fei-Fei Li

Professor of Computer Science, Stanford

headshot Fei-Fei Li is a Professor in the Computer Science Department at Stanford University, and Co-Director of Stanford’s upcoming Human-Centered AI Institute. She served as the Director of Stanford’s AI Lab from 2013 to 2018. During her sabbatical from Stanford from January 2017 to September 2018, she was Vice President at Google and served as Chief Scientist of AI/ML at Google Cloud.

Dr. Li’s main research areas are in machine learning, deep learning, computer vision, and cognitive and computational neuroscience. She is the inventor of ImageNet and the ImageNet Challenge, a critical large-scale dataset and benchmarking effort that has contributed to the latest developments in deep learning and AI. Dr. Li is a keynote speaker at many academic or influential conferences and a recipient of numerous awards and has published nearly 200 scientific articles in top-tier journals and conferences. Work from her lab has been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fortune Magazine, Science, Wired Magazine, MIT Technology Review, Financial Times, and other publications.

Dr. Li obtained her B.A. degree in physics from Princeton in 1999 with High Honors and her Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in 2005. She joined Stanford in 2009 as an assistant professor. Prior to that, she was on the faculty at Princeton University (2007-2009) and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (2005-2006).

Murat Sönmez

Managing Director, Head of Centre for the 4th Industrial Revolution, World Economic Forum LLC

headshot Murat Sönmez started his professional career in 1989 as a Silicon Valley-based software engineer focusing on automating the leading semiconductor chip manufacturing factories globally. In 1994 he joined Teknekron Software Systems in Palo Alto, a company that digitized Wall Street by creating an integrated real-time trader workstation based on the early internet protocols (IP). In 1997, Murat was among the founding team of TIBCO Software, a real-time predictive data analytics software company based in Palo Alto, where he was responsible for TIBCO’s customer and partner facing global field operations. He was also a director and board member of TIBCO Software Federal Inc., servicing the U.S. Federal Government. In October 2014, he joined the World Economic Forum as a Member of the Managing Board in Geneva, Switzerland. He is currently the Head of the Forum's Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution at the Presidio in San Francisco.

Murat has personally been involved in many industry firsts, including helping companies such as eBay, Amazon and Yahoo! build their portal and e-commerce platforms; helping leading semiconductor companies to create the world’s first fully automated fab; laying the foundation for real-time track and trace operations for logistics companies; working with national intelligence agencies to help identify and respond to cyber-attacks; working with manufacturing companies to identify supply chain issues before they happen in order to take proactive action; working with leading retailers to match customers’ references to available inventory in real-time; working with leading banks for predictive customer management; creating the smart grid and cyber security infrastructure for utilities in the U.S. and Australia; and in one case doubling the electricity capacity of a grid without adding a single watt of extra generation, leading to $2 billion in savings annually.

In his executive sponsor role in several of these engagements, Murat worked directly with the CEOs and boards to help transform their organizations and gave keynote speeches globally at customers’ and partners’ gatherings. Murat has a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering from Bosphorus University, Istanbul, Turkey, and an M.S. in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from Virginia Tech.