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When President John F. Kennedy announced on May 25, 1961 that the United States would land a man on the Moon by 1970, no one was more surprised than the engineers at NASA. On the day of the historic speech, America had a total of fifteen minutes of spaceflight experience. In fact, Soviet canines had more spaceflight experience than US astronauts. To fulfill President Kennedy’s mandate, NASA engineers had to invent space travel.

Drawing from his book One Giant Leap, Fishman introduced us to the men and women tasked with putting a man on the moon. From the halls of MIT, where the eccentric and legendary digital pioneer Charles Draper created the two computers aboard Apollo 11, to the factories where hundreds of women weaved computer programs with copper wire, Fishman captured the sweeping achievement of these ordinary Americans. Join us for the captivating story of men and women charged with changing the world as we know it—their leaders, their triumphs, their near disasters, all of which led to arguably the greatest success story of the twentieth century.

Charles Fishman is the acclaimed author of A Curious Mind (with Brian Grazer), The Wal-Mart Effect,and The Big Thirst. He is a three-time winner of the Gerald Loeb Award, the most prestigious prize in business journalism.

Recorded live in The Forum at Town Hall Seattle on June 28, 2019.

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