Beth Beck is passionate about public service, and views innovation and collaboration as a means to challenge bureaucratic status quo. As NASA's Open Innovation Program Manager, her role is to accelerate the identification and adoption of breakthrough innovation and cutting-edge data technology solutions through open government, digital strategy, and mass collaboration opportunities. Beth believes LAUNCH is an opportunity to make this world a better place while demonstrating the relevance between life on Earth and the extreme environment of space. She led creation of MindMapr, an interactive insight-gathering tool designed specifically for the LAUNCH forums. Beth, a social media addict, adopted Twitter early in 2007 as one of the first NASA users. She coordinated development of NASA’s Facebook account, and was instrumental in planning and supporting NASA’s spaceflight mission Tweetups. Beth received NASA’s Exceptional Service Medal for her innovative public outreach programs. Beth is currently pursuing PhD research on collaborative innovation networks and social intrapreneurship through Virginia Tech. You can learn more about Beth at Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and her blog.
Jason Kessler, NASA’s Asteroid Grand Challenge Program Executive, began his professional career at NASA back in 1994. After graduating with a degree in Chemistry, Jason earned a position in NASA’s Legislative office and spent the following six years in various positions at NASA, culminating with the position of Deputy Chief of Staff to the NASA Administrator. Jason’s entrepreneurial spirit eventually led him back to school, earning his MBA. Several businesses later, Jason returned to NASA to join the SERVIR program office combining his private and public sector experience into one venture bringing decision-support information for climate change adaptation to those in the developing world. As the Asteroid Grand Challenge PE, Jason is working to use open innovation to help accelerate NASA’s existing efforts to “find all asteroid threats to human populations and know what to do about them.”
Santiago Gowland is General Manager for Sustainable Business & Innovation (SB&I) at NIKE INC. He leads the Systems Innovation Function, which seeks to accelerate and scale innovation by catalyzing external resources and new ways of collaboration. Within Systems Innovation Santiago is driving Nike’s innovation external engagement agenda and developing network mobilization capabilities to catalyze knowledge, capital, creativity, and connectivity. As one example in this capacity, Santiago leads the partnership with LAUNCH for NIKE INC. LAUNCH’s mission is to maximize human potential by transforming our existing human systems into new ones that are more sustainable, accessible, and empowering.
US DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Alan Hurd is a Franklin Fellow, at US Department of State, in the Office of the S&T Adviser to the Secretary (STAS). Alan joined STAS in June 2012, where his portfolio includes energy and critical elements, LAUNCH, Science of Science Policy and national laboratory interactions. Alan is on leave from Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. As a materials physicist, Alan is personally interested in complex and high performance materials. He is associated with the Santa Fe Institute (SFI), the American Physical Society, and the Materials Research Society with which he helped develop “Strange Matter”, a traveling museum exhibit on materials.
David Ferguson is a member of USAID’s Office of Science and Technology focused on applied research and challenge models for development. Before joining USAID in September, 2009, he worked on international development over the previous 5 years as an independent consultant at the nexus of development, technology, and the private sector. His first career was 27 years at AT&T where he created and ran AT&T’s Professional Services Division, developing it into a US$200M profitable entity. He was based in Hong Kong for seven years and focused on the developing markets of China, India and Indonesia, for telecommunications services investment opportunities. He built seven joint ventures during this period. His technical expertise includes Information and Communications Technology (ICT) for development, economic growth through private sector engagement, and government technology and telecommunications policy and regulation. Mr. Ferguson holds a Master of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Stanford University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts. He is married, has three daughters, and resides in Oakton, VA.
Seema Patel is a Development Specialist at DAI and an Innovation Advisor to Center for Development Innovation at the U.S. Global Development Lab. She supports USAID to design and implement a portfolio of innovation programs and public-private partnerships to strategically invest in high potential social innovations, entrepreneurs and ecosystems. She is passionate about the power of market driven solutions to solve the greatest development challenges of our generation. Previously, she worked in U.S. development policy and was an investment banker at Citigroup London and Vector Healthcare Group in San Francisco.
Valador Team: Consultation, Strategy, Design, Implementation
A technologist and a strategist, Ben Slavin is an expert in the application of design and technology solutions. Ben is co-founder and CEO of Bolster, an interactive strategy, design and technology firm. In collaboration with NASA, Ben has worked to bring the Mind Mapr technology to LAUNCH, allowing greater exploration of the insights of the Collective Genius Network. Ben has a B.S.E. in Computer Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh and an MBA with focus in strategy, technology and entrepreneurship from the Robert H. Smith School at the University of Maryland.
In a world where everything is connected, Christine Jacobs is a systems-seer, believer and navigator. As a ‘Connector’ with FURTHER by Design, she works with organizations across sectors to develop holistic approaches to addressing sustainability issues by engaging the ecosystem of external players surrounding the issue at hand. Preceding this focus on social systems, she began her career reengineering and optimizing technical systems and processes as a consultant at Deloitte Consulting, and then at the S.D. Bechtel Jr. Foundation. She has a B.S. in Industrial & Systems Engineering from USC, is a life-long appreciator of the interconnected web of life, and will challenge you to a handstand contest any day.
Jeff Hamaoui is an expert in sustainability and public-private partnerships with 15 years’ experience exploring business models for social entrepreneurship. Jeff co-founded Origo in 1999, and has made a name as a cross-sector broker, facilitator and strategist. Origo was purchased by the Cazneau Group in 2010. Jeff spent several years working alongside the World Business Council for Sustainable Development and its 150 Fortune 500 companies looking at strategies for ‘inclusive’ business in emerging markets. This allowed him to consult across industry sectors, including healthcare (Pfizer), telecommunications (Vodafone, Nokia), oil and gas (BP and Chevron), utilities (Eskom, Suez, GE),and finance (Rabobank, Deutschebank, Wells Fargo, GE Financial). Jeff received his M.A. in Education from London University and B.A. in Philosophy and Literature from Swansea University. He is fluent in Spanish and French.
Rachel Lawley is an innovation facilitator with expertise convening systems of stakeholders around complex challenges. Through FURTHER she has supported projects as varied as public-private partnerships for health delivery in Africa, leadership programs for the emerging field of synthetic biology, and public-private partnerships for LGBTQ equality, as well as internal strategy development for health-focused NGOs. She joined the LAUNCH team in 2010. Previously, Rachel served as Vice Consul for the British Government, building connections between healthcare and biotechnology companies, researchers, funders, regulators, and government agencies in the U.S. and U.K. She started her career as a research analyst in the social enterprise space, and has spent over a decade supporting organizations with business development and new market strategies. Rachel received her B.S. in Psychology from Lancaster University in the United Kingdom.
James Parr is a product designer who’s spent 18 years thinking, drawing and inventing new businesses and communications ideas for global brands. A passionate environmentalist, James has been dedicated to sustainability and social entrepreneurship for over a decade. Based in London, James serves clients around the world, doing sustainability work for Nike, Shell, Barclays and BP and is considered an eco-business strategy pioneer. Before founding Imaginals he worked as a Project Lead at Innovation Consultancy IDEO.
Carrie Freeman is a partner with SecondMuse focused on applying the art & science of collaboration to solve perplexing problems and create positive impact. Previously, Carrie worked for Intel Corporation as the Director of Sustainable Business Innovation, responsible for developing the vision and business opportunities for Intel’s technology solutions in the areas of the environment and natural resource management. Carrie regularly speaks around the world on the role of technology and sustainability, innovation and corporate responsibility. She has collaborated with corporations, multilateral and development organizations, industry consortia, non-profits and academia on sustainability initiatives. Passionate about expanding human potential, Carrie is a certified performance coach and has trained hundreds of individuals. Carrie holds an MBA in environmental policy and planning from the University of New Mexico.
Chad Badiyan is a partner with SecondMuse, a consultantcy that is in the business of transforming complex systems for the better. Motivated by a belief that the fundamental purpose of business is to contribute to the advancement of civilization, Chad strives to align organizational structures and systems with a shared strategic mission, and to foster holistic, intrinsic models of motivation. Previously, Chad lead the design and development of IBM's online university, and was executive director of a non-profit that aided in providing education to persecuted populations. Chad received a B.A. in Communications and Information Systems from Purdue University and an MBA in Entrepreneurship from the University of St. Thomas.
Natalia Arjomand is a consultant with experience in social innovation, sustainability, shared value, strategy and finance. At SecondMuse she has worked closely in systems transformation focusing on the power of social innovation to change the world. She is passionate about the transformative power of business for social, economic and environmental good. Prior to SecondMuse, Natalia was a strategy consultant at Deloitte in the Energy Management and Sustainability group. Natalia began her career working at Lehman Brothers and Barclays Capital after receiving her B.S. in Finance. She received her Master in Business Administration and Master in Arts in International Development concentrating on Corporate Social Responsibility from American University.
Todd Khozein is a partner with SecondMuse, a consultancy specializing in the use of collaborative processes to conceive and incubate innovative initiatives. He personally focuses on studying and applying the emerging science of collaboration. His interests lie in the incubation of collaborative frameworks where the incentive structure, technological platform and human resource development initiatives align to create a culture of innovation. Todd holds a B.A. in Economics and a Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of New Mexico.
Dennis Bonilla is the Senior Digital Strategist at Valador, Inc. in Washington, DC and the LAUNCH Community Manager. As a data visualization professional Dennis has created community-driven federal websites, developed immersive environment software for NASA and commercial clients, and contributed to a variety of materials including documents presented to the U.S. President. As the LAUNCH Community Manager Dennis communicates the LAUNCH initiative and innovator stories across LAUNCH's social media platforms. Dennis is versed in the nuances of online conversation and shares content to provide insight about a program whose goals include changing the world. Follow our story here and on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and Vimeo.