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Award-winning science correspondent and TV journalist Ira Flatow is the host of the National Public Radio program Science Friday, heard weekly on over 400 public radio stations and podcast to an audience of two million listeners. Ira is also the founder and president of the Science Friday Initiative, a non-profit company dedicated to creating radio, TV and Internet projects that make science user-friendly.
Flatow’s interest in things scientific began in boyhood, when he almost burned down his mother’s bathroom trying to recreate a biology class experiment. “I was the proverbial kid who spent hours in the basement experimenting with electronic gizmos, and then entering them in high school science fairs,” Flatow says. Mixing his passion for science with a tendency toward being “a bit of a ham,” Flatow describes his work as the challenge “to make science and technology a topic for discussion around the dinner table.”
He has shared that enthusiasm with public radio listeners for more than 50 years. As a former science correspondent for NPR, Flatow found himself reporting from the Kennedy Space Center, Three Mile Island, Antarctica and the South Pole.
He is also the author of several books, the most recent of which is titled Present at the Future: From Evolution to Nanotechnology, Candid and Controversial Conversations on Science and Nature. Flatow has authored numerous magazine articles, and public speaking and moderating are a regular part of his schedule. On television, Flatow has discussed cutting-edge science stories on a variety of programs, and has appeared on the CBS hit series The Big Bang Theory.
Among the honors Flatow has received are the U.S. News Hall of Fame (2018), the Isaac Asimov Award (2012,) the Nierenberg Prize (2010), the Carl Sagan Award (1999) and many more.
One of Ira’s hobbies is gardening, especially orchids. He and his wife, Miriam, live in Stamford.