The Brain: An Owner’s Guide, is the Center’s annual sell-out lecture series, with renowned leaders in the field discussing their groundbreaking brain health research. Virtual talks will take place on Zoom every Tuesday evening during February in 2021.


Tuesday, February 2, 2021 | 7:00-8:00 PM CT
Hormones’ Impact on Cognitive Health & Alzheimer’s 

Lisa Mosconi, PhD | The Gratitude Fund at The Dallas Foundation

There is no such thing as a gendered brain, but women’s brains do age differently from men’s, and those differences matter for our health. Nearly two thirds of the 5+ million Americans living with Alzheimer’s are women, the most common cause of dementia. Why?

Dr. Lisa Mosconi will share groundbreaking findings from her research, focused on the intersection of neuroscience and women’s health, to reveal how decreasing hormonal levels affect brain aging–and share a roadmap to support lifelong brain health. She is the founder and Director of the Women’s Brain Initiative and Associate Director of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic at Weill Cornell Medicine, where she also serves as Associate Professor of Neuroscience in Neurology and Radiology. She is the author of The New York Times bestselling books THE XX BRAIN and BRAIN FOOD.

Tuesday, February 9, 2021 | 7:00-8:00 PM CT
COVID and Total Harm Minimization: Looking Both Ways Before Crossing a Pandemic

David Katz, PhD | The Corgan Lecture

The COVID pandemic has hurt people by direct infection with SARS-CoV-2, with all of the adverse consequences now well known. It has hurt people as well by the unintended consequences of haphazard interdiction policies resulting in mass unemployment, supply chain disruptions, the amplification of social disparities, and the degradation of social determinants of health. Dr. David Katz will explore the concept of “total harm minimization” and the implementation of risk-stratified (vertical) interdiction policies, including implications for mental health. Whether or not management of this pandemic can still be enhanced, there is at least the chance to do better next time, but only if we learn the lessons of our failures.

Dr. Katz is the founding director (1998-2019) of Yale University’s Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center, Past-President of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, Founder/President of the True Health Initiative, and Founder/CEO of Diet ID, Inc. He earned his BA degree from Dartmouth College (1984); his MD from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (1988); and his MPH from the Yale University School of Public Health (1993).

Tuesday, February 16, 2021 | 7:00-8:00 PM CT
Portrait of a Brain: A Window into the Architecture of Our Mind

Nancy Kanwisher, PhD | The Caliber Home Loans Lecture

Brain imaging pioneer Nancy Kanwisher, PhD, uses fMRI scans to see activity in brain regions (often her own). She will share what she and her colleagues have learned: The brain is made up of both highly specialized components and general-purpose “machinery,” and each component is in approximately the same location in virtually every normal person. Knowing our minds are made up of selective, specific and specialized components gives us a window into the fundamental mechanisms that underlie our experiences and can ultimately lead to a better understanding of who we are and what it means to be human.

Dr. Kanwisher is the Walter A. Rosenblith Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT, and a founding member of the McGovern Institute. She joined the MIT faculty in 1997, and prior to that served on the faculty at UCLA and Harvard University. In 1999, she received the National Academy of Sciences Troland Research Award.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021 | 7:00-8:00 PM CT
Improve Your Brain Health with Brain Foods

Drew Ramsey, MD | The Highland Capital Management Lecture

If you’ve read about how omega-3 fats can benefit brain health or how the gut microbiome impacts depression, you were actually reading about nutritional psychiatry. This emerging area of attention seeks to understand how our food impacts our brain health: when we make better food choices, we are eating to build a better brain. Dr. Drew Ramsey will discuss how your brain’s energy is derived from the food you eat.

Dr. Ramsey is a pioneer in the field of Nutritional Psychiatry, as well as an author and a farmer. He is a clear voice in the mental health conversation and one of psychiatry’s leading proponents of using nutritional interventions. He founded the Brain Food Clinic in New York City, which incorporates evidence-based
nutrition and integrative psychiatry treatments with psychotherapy, coaching, and responsible medication management. Using the latest in brain science, nutrition and mental health research, as well as an array of delicious food, the clinic helps people live joyful, fulfilled lives. Dr. Ramsey is an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.


  • $25 per household / per lecture
  • $80 per household for the series


This course is offered for 0.4 ASHA CEUs (Advanced level, Related area)

Each lecture is worth .1 for a total up to .4 CEUs for the series

View 2020 February Lecture Series