Carl Sagan’s passion for the universe was so huge that the moment Johnny Carson saw him on a Dick Cavett special, he wanted the scientist booked on The Tonight Show. Sagan delivered “a cosmological crash course,” explaining the connection between the history of the universe and the development of life on earth.
After a diagnosis, patients at the Mayo Clinic meet with a team of specialists who help them understand what’s happening so they can decide about treatment together, says president and CEO Denis Cortese. This kind of teamwork is the stock-in-trade of Cortese, who won last year’s top leadership award from the National Center for Healthcare Leadership.
“The only thing that’s worse than ‘bad’ is ‘boring,’” critiques Sydney Brenner, a founder of molecular biology who shared a Nobel Prize for his achievements in 2002. At age 84, he keeps traveling the world, opening up new fields of research and stimulating ideas. Here's how.
In one way, Ezra Newman is the opposite of Stephen Hawking, another genius physicist. Unlike Hawking, who is great at attracting attention, Newman is great at deflecting it. Newman is unassuming, but boy is he influential. Like the black holes he studies, he gets noticed through his effects on his surroundings.
Astrophysicist Jesse Greenstein was the first to correctly describe the nature of quasars, co-discovered cosmic radio noise emanating from our galaxy and proved that stars in globular clusters have fewer heavy elements and thus predate the sun. As a boss, though, Greenstein was perhaps even more stellar.
Until his death in 2006, economist Milton Friedman kept up with opposing points of view, a practice being lost today as people find it increasingly easier to retreat into communities of interest reflecting only their own entrenched opinions. By contrast, Friedman read a range of material from conservative to liberal. “It seems to me more important to read stuff you disagree with than to read stuff you agree with,” he said.