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Larry Brilliant
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Videos

  • Larry Brilliant: A global pandemic calls for global solutions
    Larry Brilliant: A global pandemic calls for global solutions
  • Dr. Larry Brilliant
    Dr. Larry Brilliant
  • WHO global epidemiologist: Hawaii needs to do more to stop Omicron surge
    WHO global epidemiologist: Hawaii needs to do more to stop Omicron surge
  • Coronavirus: Lessons From Past Epidemics | Retro Report
    Coronavirus: Lessons From Past Epidemics | Retro Report
  • Season 2, Episode 11 - President M. Roy Wilson interviews alumnus Dr. Larry Brilliant
    Season 2, Episode 11 - President M. Roy Wilson interviews alumnus Dr. Larry Brilliant
  • Stamping out smallpox is just one chapter of his Brilliant life story
    Stamping out smallpox is just one chapter of his Brilliant life story
  • Building a Better World Together - Dreamforce '16 with Philanthropist Larry Brilliant
    Building a Better World Together - Dreamforce '16 with Philanthropist Larry Brilliant
  • Career with Compassion: How An Open Heart Can Ignite the World Stage | Larry Brilliant | TEDxMarin
    Career with Compassion: How An Open Heart Can Ignite the World Stage | Larry Brilliant | TEDxMarin
  • The Most Dangerous Global Health Threats | Larry Brilliant | Big Think
    The Most Dangerous Global Health Threats | Larry Brilliant | Big Think
  • Sometimes Brilliant | Larry Brilliant | Talks at Google
    Sometimes Brilliant | Larry Brilliant | Talks at Google
  • The Meaning of Compassion | Salesforce
    The Meaning of Compassion | Salesforce
  • Pandemics - Can we eliminate major worldwide epidemics
    Pandemics - Can we eliminate major worldwide epidemics
  • Larry Brilliant: TED Prize wish: Help stop the next pandemic
    Larry Brilliant: TED Prize wish: Help stop the next pandemic

Learn More About Larry Brilliant, MD

The tragedies and economic impact of COVID-19 can best be explained by the world’s foremost authority on pandemics and viruses, Dr. Larry Brilliant, physician, epidemiologist, global philanthropist and self-described social change “addict.” Through his consulting and advisory services, Brilliant offers leaders actionable, strategic advice for navigating uncertainty during global health crises.

Brilliant, who is the founder and CEO of Pandefense Advisory, is best known for having been a key member of the successful World Health Organization’s Smallpox Eradication Program. He was previously the president and CEO of the Skoll Global Threats Fund, vice president of Google, and the founding executive director of Google.org.

Brilliant is an M.D. and M.P.H. who is board certified in preventive medicine and public health. He also serves as a member of strategic advisory committees for the Berkeley School of Public Health at the University of California, Berkeley; Omidyar Network; and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers Venture Capital.

In addition to his medical career, Brilliant co-founded The Well, a pioneering virtual community, with Stewart Brand in 1985. He also holds a telecommunications technology patent and has served as CEO of two public companies and other venture-backed startups.

Brilliant is the cofounder of The Seva Foundation, an NGO whose programs have given back sight to more than 5 million blind people in two dozen countries. He has written two books, and dozens of articles, including “Sometimes Brilliant“, his account of the successful eradication of smallpox. Brilliant has worked at city, county, state, federal and international levels. He was a “first responder” for CDC’s smallpox bio-terrorism response effort, has volunteered in Sri Lanka for tsunami relief, and he established Pandefense Advisory, an interdisciplinary consultancy that aims to prepare for possible pandemic influenza. He recently worked for the WHO polio eradication effort as well. He was Associate Professor of epidemiology, global health planning and economic development at the University of Michigan.

Brilliant earned a Master of Public Health degree in health planning and economic development from the University of Michigan, and he received his M.D. from Wayne Medical School. He has received several awards from the Government of India and from WHO. In 2005, he received an honorary Doctor of Sciences degree from Knox College, and he was named “International Public Health Hero” by the University of California. In February 2006, he received the Sapling Foundation’s TED Prize.

Larry Brilliant is available to advise your organization via virtual and in-person consulting meetings, interactive workshops and customized keynotes through the exclusive representation of Stern Speakers & Advisors, a division of Stern Strategy Group®.

Larry Brilliant, MD was last modified: November 21st, 2022 by Meg Virag

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Changing the World: One Challenge at a Time

Larry’s career reads like a movie script. It starts with him as a young doctor who gets recruited to deliver a Native American baby on the occupied Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco Bay in the late 1960s. He then gets swept up into the literal making of a movie, which involves psychedelic buses traveling cross country with the likes of Wavy Gravy and culminates in a Pink Floyd concert in England. He and some others stay on the bus, and travel for the next few years all the way to India. There, Larry meets Ram Dass and studies with a guru in a monastery in the Himalayas. The guru tells him to join the United Nations and eradicate smallpox. After numerous attempts to join the effort, accompanied with journeys up and down the mountain, he finally gets a UN job and eventually becomes one of the leaders of the WHO program that indeed eradicates history’s greatest killer. The story doesn’t stop there. Brilliant goes on to launch a foundation that eventually helps as many as 2 million blind people regain sight – with the help of the Grateful Dead and Steve Jobs, among others. He also becomes involved in a technology company that provides the core hardware and software for the founding of the pioneering online community, the WELL. Brilliant’s career is in every way remarkable. So, too, are his insights into where the world might be heading. In this presentation, he delivers multiple perspectives: those of a physician, a former CEO, a technologist, and – now – one of the world’s most visible philanthropists, to challenge each of us to change the world.

Birds, Bugs, and Business: Preparing for Crisis

The first years of this century have brought increasing shocks – technological, political, economic, and climatic. Now we are facing mounting concerns about a possible biological crisis: an avian flu pandemic. But what is its probability? What steps can we take to prepare? And what are the broader implications for business and society?

Michigan Today Logo 2022

Calling Dr. Brilliant

September 23, 2022

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Corporate Giver

March 9, 2008

“Dr. Brilliant is a name to live up to, and he has.”

2006 TEDPrize Nominator

Senior Technical Advisor on the motion picture “Contagion” (2011)

Honored as an “International Public Health Hero” by the University of California

Named to the “100 Most Influential People in the World” list by TIME Magazine (2008)

Granted the “Community Peace Maker Award” from Wayne State University