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Atlanta Science Festival

  • Atlanta Shakespeare Tavern 499 West Peachtree Street Northwest Atlanta, GA, 30308 United States (map)

Atlanta Science Festival

The Story Collider is delighted to once again be a part of the Atlanta Science Festival! Join us for five true, personal stories about science in the Peach State.


Stories by:

Stephen Granade is a physicist specializing in robotic sensors. His sensors have read fingerprints from ten feet away, controlled robot helicopters, and guided the shuttle to the Hubble Space Telescope. He’s provided scientific commentary for, CBS Marketwatch, and Jalopnik, and won awards for presenting to non-scientists. His PhD research involved trapping and cooling atoms to nearly absolute zero by using really powerful lasers, vacuum systems, and a fair amount of Mountain Dew. During that research he only set fire to himself once, shocked himself twice, and still has two working eyes. He is the director of the Dragoncon science track.


David Russell is a librarian, bookseller and storyteller who is thankful to live in Georgia after spending 28 years in the Buffalo area. He hosts Stories On The Square on the fourth Sunday of every month at Kavarna. He has also performed at Naked City, Carapace, Write Club Atlanta, Titans of Talking and Stories On The Edge Of Night. He won his first storytelling award at the age of 9 and has been addicted ever since.


Dr. Amanda Stockton is an assistant professor in the Chemistry and Biochemistry department at the Georgia Institute of Technology.  Her work walks the line between engineering and science to develop instrumentation capable of looking for organic molecules elsewhere in the solar system.  These molecules could be the feedstock for an emergence of life or the remnants of past life now extinct on places like Europa, Enceladus, and Mars.  Dr. Stockton grew up on a cattle ranch in Oklahoma, where she graduated from the Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics.  At the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, she majored in Aerospace Engineering and Chemistry – seemingly unrelated topics but perfect for her “dream job,” i.e. the one she has now.  After obtaining a masters at Brown in chemistry, she earned her PhD with Dr. Richard Mathies at the University of California, Berkeley working on increasing the analytical chemistry capabilities of the Mars Organic Analyzer microchip capillary electrophoresis instrument platform.  She continued in this vein at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, by furthering the microfluidic engineering side of the technology as first a NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellow and then as a Technologist.  At Georgia Tech, her group’s work seeks to do both the engineering and the science to synergistically promote instrument capabilities and robustness.  Currently, the group’s main NASA-funded project is a version of the Mars Organic Analyzer that could fit on a kinetic impactor mission to an icy moon – a project for which testing involves a giant rail gun and a magnetic capture system to decelerate the instrument at 50,000 g or the equivalent of hitting a planet at 5 km/s.


Nneze Akwiwu is currently a senior Biology major at Spelman College. She thinks of herself as a bubbly, outgoing and very family oriented individual. She has plans of becoming the first female president of Nigeria.


Dr. Brion Randolph is currently the Chief of Medical Oncology at Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) in Newnan, Georgia. He joined CTCA as a medical oncologist and hematologist when the hospital opened in August 2012 and is now Chief of Medical Oncology.  He also serves as Medical Director of Hematologic Oncology at the Newnan hospital.

Dr. Randolph earned his medical degree from the University of South Carolina in Columbia, and he is board certified in medical oncology, hematology and internal medicine. Dr. Randolph also earned a Master of Science in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Tennessee (UT) in Knoxville. He completed residency training in internal medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, where he also completed his fellowship training in hematology and oncology. 

While Dr. Randolph started his education in nuclear engineering, he switched to medicine when introduced to the field of hematology/oncology as a graduate student studying the physics of medical imaging and radiation therapy.

Dr. Randolph lives in Newnan with his wife and two children. He has a passion for music and the performing arts, and as a drum major he had the opportunity to lead the UT Band in the 1993 inaugural parade for President Bill Clinton. His hobbies also include tennis and running.

Earlier Event: March 20
Bangor - Maine Science Festival
Later Event: March 31
DC - Koshland Museum