NY Times Reporter
ALAN SCHWARZ is a Pulitzer Prize-nominated journalist best known for his reportage of public health issues for The New York Times. His 130-article series on concussions in sports is roundly credited with exposing the seriousness of head injuries in the National Football League and all youth athletics. His work was profiled in several films and was a finalist for the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service, journalism's highest honor. A subsequent series on A.D.H.D. and other psychiatric disorders in children led to his writing "A.D.H.D. NATION: Children, Doctors, Big Pharma and the Making of an American Epidemic," published in September 2016.
Cliffton Wang is a senior at Edgemont Jr/Sr High School. He is an All-American and State Champion wrestler and will be attending Harvard next year. He was recruited by basically every top-tier school that had wrestling. He has also won numerous wrestler of the year and most outstanding wrestler awards. Ray, his brother, was an All-State wrestler who guided Cliffton. He had the support of John Degl, owner of Iowa Style Wrestling, and Pete Jacobson, Head Coach of Edgemont, in his wrestling career. In academics, he has won many awards in the science and math fields and worked as an intern at New York Medical College for two summers. Cliffton will be talking about the impact that sports have had on every aspect of his life, not just in academics and athletics.
Partner at Law Firm: Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld
Doug Rappaport and his family have resided in Edgemont for 17 years. Doug’s son Scott is a sophomore at EHS and his son Matt graduated EHS last year. He is a litigation and securities partner at the law firm of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld in New York, and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard Law School. He has also previously served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Benjamin Cardozo School of Law in Manhattan.
Doug serves on the board of Ars Nova, a non-profit theater and performing arts organization in New York City. Doug and his wife Debbie are partners of the New York Public Theater and New York Theater Workshop, and supporters of Shakespeare in the Park. Doug has extensively read, seen and studied Shakespeare’s canon, as well as the works of American cultural icons such as Jay-Z, Eminem, the Wu-Tang Clan and Kendrick Lamar.
Greenburgh Town Supervisor
Paul Feiner began his career in public service when he was 12. At 16, Paul Feiner persuaded the county of Westchester to open the Bronx River Parkway on Sunday for cyclists, a program that still exists today. A former Westchester County Legislator, Mr. Feiner formed the Have a Heart for the Homeless Committee—helping a few hundred families avoid homelessness. In l99l, he was elected Town Supervisor of Greenburgh, the largest town in Westchester County. Under Feiner’s tenure the town’s crime rate has gone down to the lowest levels in recorded history. The town’s bond rating increased three times to AAA, the highest bond rating. The town increased open space from 200 to 600 acres. He has bicycled from Edgemont to Washington DC 3 times to lobby for different causes. Additionally, he is married to Sherrie Brown and has a daughter named Julia.
Post-doctorate Fellow at University of British Columbia
Raika received her Bachelor of Science in Molecular Biology and Genetics and subsequently finished her PhD in Neuroscience from The University of British Columbia. She is currently a post-doctoral fellow there. Her main research interests are how the visual system perceives the world and how ion channels in individual neurons make this possible at the molecular level. Her goal is to combine multiple scales of neuroscience from genetics to neuroimaging to study mechanisms and disorders of the human visual system.
Chair of Political Science
Robert Y. Shapiro (Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1982) is the Wallace S. Sayre Professor of Government in the Department of Political Science and Professor of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. He is a past chair of the Department of Political Science at Columbia University and served as acting director of Columbia’s Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy (ISERP) during 2008-2009. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, received a Distinguished Columbia Faculty Award in 2012, and in 2010 the Outstanding Achievement Award of the New York Chapter of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (NYAAPOR). He specializes in American politics with research and teaching interests in public opinion, policymaking, political leadership, the mass media, and applications of statistical methods. He has taught at Columbia since 1982. He will talk about polling specifically with reference to the previous election.
Principal, Artificial Intelligence and Research at Microsoft
Shane works on developing an artificially intelligent digital assistant at Microsoft, which he hopes will eventually automate all of the uninteresting things that he has to get done during the day. Prior to joining Microsoft, as the Vice President of Product at Lumiata, he worked on early identification of chronic diseases using AI and machine learning. He’s held various roles in product and engineering at Netflix, Shutterstock, Gliimpse (Apple), and Powerset/Microsoft; all focused around scaling machine learned products.
He holds a MS in Computational and Mathematical Engineering from Stanford and degrees in Mathematics and Molecular Biology from the University of Colorado. When not working, he tries to spend as much time with his family, which unfortunately involves a lot of cleaning, scheduling and laundry. He’s trying to automate that, too.