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ROBERT EDSEL, writer of the acclaimed book, The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History, opened the lecture series on Jan. 22. Edsel’s book follows the efforts of a special Allied force – made up of art historians, curators and architects – with a mission of tracking and retrieving art, historic documents and other cultural treasures stolen by the Nazis during World War II. Actor and director George Clooney’s movie, The Monuments Men, is based on Edsel’s book and had its premiere on Feb. 7, 2014.
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VINTON G. CERF, recognized as one of the “fathers of the Internet” and currently the vice president and chief Internet evangelist at Google, spoke on March 26. Cerf has received such honors as the National Medal of Technology, the Turing Award and the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his role in the creation of the Internet. In his work at Google, Cerf identifies and promotes new technologies used to develop Internet-based products and services.
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CHRISTIAN BELADY, general manager of Data Center Services for Microsoft’s Global Foundation Services and a UT Dallas alumnus, spoke on Feb. 26. He oversees all aspects of Microsoft’s global data center network, including the expansion of new data centers and the development of new standards in energy efficiency that have been adopted across the industry. Belady earned a master’s degree in international management studies at UT Dallas in 1990 and received the University’s Distinguished Alumni Award in 2010.
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MAE JEMISON, a chemical engineer, scientist, physician, entrepreneur, teacher and astronaut, spoke on April 16. She was the first African-American woman to enter NASA’s astronaut corps and flew aboard the space shuttle Endeavour in 1992. Jemison is currently leading 100 Year Starship, an initiative seed-funded by the Department of Defense's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to assure the capability for human interstellar space travel to another star is possible within the next 100 years.
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