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The Passing of a Dear Friend

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Professor Patrick Suppes pioneering research in computer based instruction with a girl seated at a terminal circa 1960.

Professor Patrick Suppes (1922-2014)

Last week, the world lost one of its greatest intellects. It is with a heavy heart that I share the passing of Stanford University Professor Emeritus Dr. Patrick Suppes – the incredible man and brilliant mind who was the foundation of our work at Redbird Advanced Learning and the catalyst for our mission at GiftedandTalented.com.

It would be impossible to list all the contributions Pat made as a scholar and visionary during his lifetime – and even more difficult to accurately describe their impact. During his 64 years at Stanford, Pat published hundreds of papers, worked with colleagues to write 32 books, and was widely recognized as a driving force of the university’s growth and development.  He was the recipient of numerous accolades and awards, including the National Medal of Science presented to him by President George H. W. Bush. Remarkably, Pat’s contributions extended far beyond the academic. As a true Silicon Valley pioneer, he founded the first company focused on using computers in the classroom.

Pat saw a future where every child was seen as a genius – not because they were inherently smart or because the bar was lowered for those who struggled in classrooms, but because they were taught in ways that helped each child realize his or her greatest potential. In this way, Pat was a visionary in education, spearheading the development of the very adaptive and personalized learning technologies that are transforming the way we think about learning today. I have never known a man who believed so strongly in the power of education. He was truly an inspiration to me and many others.

Through his creation of Stanford’s Education Program for Gifted Youth (EPGY), Pat made his vision a reality – igniting a lifelong love of learning in more than a million students. And I know that’s just the beginning. As a mentor and close personal friend, Pat told me often of his dreams to take EPGY’s powerful courses to the world, to help unlock the brilliance in students across the globe. He dreamed of what that would mean for innovation, business, science and technology in the next generation.  I am honored to continue his legacy through Redbird Advanced Learning and GiftedandTalented.com.

I hope you will join me in keeping his family and friends in your thoughts as we remember all he contributed as a father, husband, friend and educator.



Matthew Mugo Fields

Founder of Redbird Advanced Learning and GiftedandTalented.com


Matthew Mugo Fields, Founder of Redbird Advanced Learning and GifteandTalented.com, is a long-time social entrepreneur and leader in education, committed to improving education through technology and innovation.