John DeNero ‘98

Date: Thursday, Nov. 10, 8:30-10am
Location: Blake campus, Bovey

This edition of Breakfast at Blake featured our 2022 Young Alumnus of the Year John DeNero ’98.

DeNero is an associate teaching professor of computer science at the University of California, Berkeley, the associate dean for undergraduate studies in the UC Berkeley Division of Computing, Data Science, and Society and the co-founder and chief scientist at Lilt Inc., a language translation software and services company. At UC Berkeley, DeNero teaches some of the largest college courses in the country. His introductory computer science course includes 1,650 students, and his introductory data science course has 1,950 students (the highest course enrollment in UC Berkeley history). Prior to his current roles, he was a senior research scientist at Google working primarily on Google Translate.

During his talk on the Undergraduate Shift Toward Computing, Data Science, and Society, DeNero shared his perspective on how the rising popularity of computing and data science is reshaping the American college experience, changing the role of high school preparation and sparking student interest in the social implications of technology. He also described his own winding path from Blake into artificial intelligence research and founding Lilt, a Silicon Valley language technology startup.

DeNero entered Blake in seventh grade and participated in the math team, Blaker's Dozen, Quiz Bowl, Science Bowl and cross country running. He received his undergraduate degree from Stanford University, where his interdisciplinary studies ranged from statistics to philosophy. He received a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of California, Berkeley. He lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife, Jessica Wan, and first grade son, Ian.