• St. Paul's United Methodist Church (map)
  • 5501 Main St
  • Houston, TX, 77004
  • United States
Dr. John Leinhard will speak at the Foundation's annual dinner

The annual dinner of the St. Paul’s Methodist Foundation of Houston will be at 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 12, in Fondren Hall. The evening will celebrate the life and work of the Foundation — now in its 55th year.

Following the theme of “The Common Good,” the speaker will be Dr. John Leinhard, creator of and primary contributor to KUHF-FM Houston Public Media’s The Engines of Our Ingenuity. The Foundation's annual report will be distributed at the dinner and also downloaded here.

To reserve a $15 dinner, please use this form or call 713-528-0527 by May 8.  Childcare will be available by reservation. Please indicate if childcare will be needed when making your dinner reservation.

The M.D. Anderson Professor of Technology and Culture, Emeritus, at the University of Houston, Dr. Leinhard introduced the “Engines” public radio program on January 4, 1988, on KUHF Public Radio. The program was made available nationally three months later, and it continues to air twice a day over KUHF plus more than 30 other National Public Radio affiliates.

To tell the story of how our culture is formed by human creativity, the program uses the record of history to reveal the way art, technology, and ideas have shaped us. Episode topics range from arc lights to crop rotation, the connection between Romantic poets and Victorian science to the invention of the bar code.

Leinhard has not only won many awards for his work on this series and teaching, but an award has been designated in his own name — The John H. Lienhard Award was created by Region X of ASME in 1996 to honor contributors to a public understanding of engineering. 

He also has been awarded by ASME for his outstanding contributions to the science of heat transfer, the topic of one of his text books. Several books also have been published based on  “Engines” broadcast. These are How Invention Begins: Echoes of Old Voices in the Rise of New Machine, Inventing Modern: Growing up with XRays, Skyscrapers, and Tailfins, and The Engines of Our Ingenuity: An Engineer Looks at Technology and Culture.

After graduating with B.S. and M.S. degrees from Oregan State College and the University of Washington, he earned a Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley from which he was named Outstanding Engineering Graduate. 

At the end of every “Engineers” program, Dr. Lienhard closes with “we’re interested in the way inventive minds work.” 

St. Paul’s Foundation supports that concept through its scholarships and speaker funds as well as, more indirectly, its several other funds.