Google’s Brian McClendon to serve as grand marshal for KU Homecoming parade

Fri, 09/13/2013

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Jennifer Sanner
KU Alumni Association
785-864-9782

LAWRENCE — In keeping with the 2013 University of Kansas Homecoming theme, “Jayhawks Around the World,” KU graduate and Google Earth co-creator Brian McClendon will lead the Homecoming Parade as grand marshal. The parade will begin at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3, on Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence.

McClendon, a Lawrence native, earned his KU engineering degree in 1986. He joined Google in 2004 and now leads the Google Maps team, which includes Google Maps for Mobile, Google Earth, Street View, Waze and Google’s local business efforts. He holds 10 patents for advanced computer graphics hardware and software.

“As a loyal Jayhawk and Lawrence native, Brian is the perfect choice as this year’s grand marshal,” said Kevin Corbett, KU Alumni Association president. “Each month, more than 1 billion people around the world use the software he helped create and, thanks to Brian, Lawrence is the default center of Google Earth.”

McClendon serves on the advisory boards for the School of Engineering and the Department of Electrical Engineering and computer science. He and his wife, Beth Ellyn, established the McClendon Engineering Scholarship in 2007, donated computer tablets for electrical engineering and computer science students, and provided a Google Liquid Galaxy interactive display in Eaton Hall. The McClendons live in Portola Valley, Calif.

Following the parade Oct. 3, the Homecoming celebration will continue with a pep rally on Eighth Street between Massachusetts and New Hampshire streets. The Alumni Association and the student-led Homecoming steering committee have planned a week of events from Sunday, Sept. 29, through Saturday, Oct. 5, concluding with the Homecoming football game featuring KU vs. Texas Tech Oct. 5 in Memorial Stadium. Visit www.kualumni.org/homecoming to view a daily schedule, meet the steering committee and learn more about KU’s Homecoming tradition.



This past week, new Jayhawks moved in and started their first semester at KU. Madisen Pool, a freshman in computer engineering, captured one of his first sunrises on the Hill. With a fresh start, and a feeling of accomplishment for starting college, Pool thought this view was a great reminder to enjoy life. We asked Pool what his advice would be to his fellow new Jayhawks and he said, "make your time here at the university memorable. Have fun, do something you’ve always wanted to do, meet new people, and most importantly get the most out of your experience and shape your life the way you want it to be. Rock Chalk!" We couldn't agree more. Rock Chalk, Madisen! Show us your new experiences with the hashtag, #exploreKU.

KU physicists doing groundbreaking work at the Large Hadron Collider. http://t.co/blsTaCXfG5 #KUfacts #KUdiscoveries #CERN #physics
KU student tricks monkey flower into growing protective ‘hair’ Thanks to a KU Undergraduate Research Award (see more at http://ugresearch.ku.edu/student/fund/ugra), Sukhindervir Sandhu, a KU junior in biochemistry, figured out which genetic button to push to get a monkey flower, or Mimulus guttatus, to grow protective trichomes, or plant hair. Sandhu was able to track it down to a gene called SKP-1. By silencing SKP-1, he discovered that gene regulates plant hair growth in monkey flowers.


One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
26 prestigious Rhodes Scholars — more than all other Kansas colleges combined
Nearly $290 million in financial aid annually
1 of 9 public universities with outstanding study abroad programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
46 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
—ALA
$260.5 million in externally funded research expenditures
23rd nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets," Military Times