HarperCollins Speakers Bureau

Dr. Gary Small

Expert on Memory, Aging, and the Brain


  • iBrain: The Impact of Technology on Your Brain
  • Improving Your Memory
  • Strategies for Living Better Longer
  • Diagnosis and Treatment of Alzheimer's Disease
  • Alzheimer's and Dementia Prevention Strategies
  • Aging Well



Dr. Gary Small is a professor of psychiatry at the UCLA Semel Institute and directs the Memory and Aging Research Center and the UCLA Center on Aging. He is one of the world’s leading experts on brain science and has published numerous books and articles. Scientific American magazine named him one of the world’s top innovators in science and technology, and he frequently appears on The Today Show, Good Morning America, 20/20, and CNN. His most recent book is The Other Side of the Couch: A Psychiatrist's Solves His Most Unusual Cases (The Naked Lady Who Stood on Her Head) (William Morrow), which is a collection of anecdotes of Dr. Small's most interesting and humorous patients. In his previous book, iBrain: Surviving the Technological Alteration of the Modern Mind (Collins), Small reveals the remarkable brain evolution caused by the constant presence of technology today. He examines this evolution's widespread interpersonal, professional, social, and political impact on our lives and offers exercises for the digital immigrants and digital natives alike to help everyone thrive in this ever-changing environment.

Small lectures extensively throughout the United States to lay and professional audiences. He has been a national spokesperson for numerous organizations. He has been a featured lecturer at the national meetings of numerous organizations, including the Alzheimer’s Associations, AARP, American Psychiatric Association, American Geriatrics Society, American Medical Directors Association, National Institute of Mental Health, National Institute on Aging, and many others. Small also frequently advises executives and managers in major corporations, such as Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Lilly, Forest, Novartis, Merck, Dupont, Siemens, Radica, Mattel, and many others.

Small invented the first brain scan that allows doctors to see the physical evidence of brain aging and Alzheimer’s disease in living people. Among his numerous breakthrough research studies, he now leads a team of neuroscientists who are demonstrating that exposure to computer technology causes rapid and profound changes in brain neural circuitry.

Small’s research team, supported by the National Institutes on Health as well as major national foundations, has published in the leading scientific and medical journals (Science, New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of the American Medical Association, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences), and has made the headlines of the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and USA Today, among other publications.

In addition to his work on brain science, he has over 20 years of extensive clinical experience in treating young adult, middle-aged, and older individuals as a practicing psychiatrist, after completing his clinical training in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. Small was the host and executive producer of a public television special, Dr. Gary Small’s Memory Bible, which aired nationally during a 2004 PBS pledge drive. Small also helped to develop a new hand-held brain game with Radica, to compete with Nintendo’s Brain Age.

Praise for The Other Side of the Couch: A Psychiatrist's Solves His Most Unusual Cases

"When a psychiatrist promises to 'tell all' about his 15 most unusual cases in 30 years of practice, a reader gets his hopes up. In The Naked Lady Who Stood on Her Head, Dr. Gary Small delivers on his promise with some fascinating tales. . . . It's a good read."
-- Associated Press

"Gary Small draws on thirty years of practice as a psychiatrist to compile these stories of human behavior at its most extreme. Each case is a mystery in miniature, requiring equal measures of detective work and healing skill. With humor, compassion, empathy, and insight, Small searches for and finds the humanity that lies hidden under even the most bizarre symptoms."
-- Daniel H. Pink, author of Drive and A Whole New Mind

"The Naked Lady Who Stood on Her Head is filled with captivating and insightful stories revealing the inner lives of unusual patients the renowned Dr. Gary Small has treated through the course of his own development from student to world-class psychiatrist. His fascinating journey offers an insider's view into how mental health professionals grow. I found it hard to put this treasure of a book down, and still now reflect on the various lives Dr. Small and his wife and writing partner, Gigi Vorgan, have so vividly shared through these thoughtful lessons in wisdom and what it means to be human."
-- Daniel J. Siegel, M.D., author of Mindsight: The New Science of Personal Transformation and Professor of Psychiatry at UCLA

"Gary Small's remarkable achievement in this book is his uncanny ability to transport the reader into a heretofore unfamiliar world of psychiatry and mental illness. The reader feels like a fly on the wall, witnessing what it's really like to stand in both the doctor's shoes and those of his patients, who experience a variety of discomfiting and eye-opening mental health conditions. Reading it will entertain you, fascinate you, inspire you, and teach you more about other people and yourself than you ever thought you knew."
-- Sonja Lyubomirsky, author of The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want and Professor of Psychology, University of California, Riverside

"Fascinating . . . Small writes with empathy and humor about the complexity of human relationships, reflecting on his lifelong struggle to help his clients gain insight and surmount their problems."
-- Booklist