Walter Isaacson: Simon & Schuster Speakers Bureau

Walter Isaacson

President and CEO of the Aspen Institute & Bestselling Biographer

Walter Isaacson is the President and CEO of the Aspen Institute. He has been the Chairman and CEO of CNN and the editor of TIME magazine. He is the author of Einstein: His Life and Universe, Benjamin Franklin: An American Life (2003), and Kissinger: A Biography (1992) and is the coauthor of The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made (1986).

Isaacson published the highly anticipated and only authorized biography – Steve Jobs. Based on more than 40 interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, colleagues—Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.

His newest title, The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution (October 2014), is a revealing story of the people who created the computer and the Internet. It is destined to be the standard history of the digital revolution and an indispensable guide to how innovation really happens. What were the talents that allowed certain inventors and entrepreneurs to turn their visionary ideas into disruptive realities? What led to their creative leaps? Why did some succeed and others fail? In his masterly saga, Isaacson begins with Ada Lovelace, Lord Byron’s daughter, who pioneered computer programming in the 1840s. He explores the fascinating personalities that created our current digital revolution, such as Vannevar Bush, Alan Turing, John von Neumann, J.C.R. Licklider, Doug Engelbart, Robert Noyce, Bill Gates, Steve Wozniak, Steve Jobs, Tim Berners-Lee, and Larry Page. This is the story of how their minds worked and what made them so inventive. It’s also a narrative of how their ability to collaborate and master the art of teamwork made them even more creative. For an era that seeks to foster innovation, creativity, and teamwork, The Innovators shows how they happen.

Isaacson was born on May 20, 1952, in New Orleans. He is a graduate of Harvard College and of Pembroke College of Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar.

He began his career at the Sunday Times of London and then the New Orleans Times-Picayune/States-Item. He joined TIME magazine in 1978 and served as a political correspondent, national editor and editor of new media before becoming the magazine’s 14th managing editor in 1996. He became Chairman and CEO of CNN in 2001, and then president and CEO of the Aspen Institute in 2003.

He is the chairman of the board of Teach for America, which recruits recent college graduates to teach in underserved communities. He was appointed by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate to serve as the chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which oversees Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, and other international broadcasts of the United States. He is vice-chair of Partners for a New Beginning, a public-private group tasked with forging ties between the United States and the Muslim world. He is on the board of United Airlines, Tulane University, and the Overseers of Harvard University. From 2005-2007, after Hurricane Katrina, he was the vice-chair of the Louisiana Recovery Authority.

At the podium, Isaacson brings a combination of wit, history, drama, and humanity to the stories of Jobs, Einstein and Franklin, and their contributions to the world. His presentations are informed by a deep knowledge of history and its significance to the news of the day.

He lives with his wife and daughter in Washington, DC.

Walter Isaacson latest book Leonardo da Vinci will be released in October 2017. Based on thousands of pages from Leonardo’s astonishing notebooks and new discoveries about his life and work, Walter Isaacson weaves a narrative that connects his art to his science. He shows how Leonardo’s genius was based on skills we can improve in ourselves, such as passionate curiosity, careful observation, and an imagination so playful that it flirted with fantasy.

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Contact Simon & Schuster Speakers Bureau.

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  • The Innovators: How a Group of Innovators, Hackers, Geniuses and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution
  • Steve Jobs: The Story of a True Visionary
  • Benjamin Franklin: An American Life
  • Einstein and Franklin: Leadership




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