As Former Director of Exhibits at the Smithsonian, Benjamin Lawless pioneered the practices of storytelling in exhibition design. Our 31-year association ended with his passing, but a memorial internship has been established at the Smithsonian to foster innovative storytelling in the next generation.
A freethinker, inventor, philosopher, and grape-breeder credited with saving the vineyards of Europe from the Phylloxera scourge, Thomas Volney Munson was the second American, after Thomas Edison, to receive the Chevalier du Mérite medal. A proponent of Dynamic Agriculture, Mr. Munson saw cultures as responsive to their place in time, and held that it was not enough to have an idea in the mind—it had to be worked out in dialogue with the real world.
Gerald Weinberg led the team that created the IBM 360 Operating System, as well as the Mercury and Gemini tracking systems. His 1970s mantra that technology can enhance lives, but also constrain lives if it forces us to conform to its functions and processes, are even more relevant today.
Dr. Robert Strom directed the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation’s commissioned research, working with the nation’s top scholars to advance knowledge in entrepreneurship, and is the co-editor of three books on entrepreneurship and economic growth. Prior to joining the Foundation, he was Assistant Vice President for public affairs at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, and regularly speaks on entrepreneurship to professional and academic audiences.
Bill Pearson is the Managing Director of Gallup Hill, LLC, a strategy and organizational consultancy that works closely with senior executives and private equity investors to achieve lasting performance improvements. As an operating executive, Mr. Pearson has served as co-CEO and CFO of a publicly held media company, CEO of a technology firm spun out of Motorola, and has led the restructuring, sale, and public offering of a technology company.
Formerly the President and CEO of the Urban League of Philadelphia, Rosalyn McPherson currently serves as the President and Founder of the Roz Group, an innovative, strategic planning and marketing/communications firm that is especially adept at working with communities to ensure that everyone has a voice in the important issues that affect us as citizens and human beings. As part of her distinguished career in museum administration and educational publishing, Ms. McPherson developed educational materials and enhanced the tour experience for the Apollo Theater in New York City, served as the Senior Vice President and Publisher for Time Life Education, and editor for Time, Inc.
Robin Reardon is Executive Producer at Walt Disney Imagineering, and mistress of the disciplined intersection of Numbers and Creativity. Originally our client at MCA Universal, and now a colleague, Ms. Reardon currently directs some 600 Imagineers to create and produce the equities of the Star Wars/Disney Intellectual Property. An accomplished and effective leader, Ms. Reardon understands how to marshal and inspire creative energies in the service of measurable ends.
A former Navy SEAL, Mark Hansen is a result-oriented manager with multifaceted international strategic and operational skills, whose experience was critical in turning around LEGO Systems, Inc., making it the number one toy maker in the world. Mr. Hansen was the original architect of LEGO Factory and currently, as the Senior Director of LEGO Digital Play Studio, serves as the lead in the development of LEGO Universe, a massively multiplayer online game. Mr. Hansen has also successfully implemented and managed innovative, diverse new products; software and technology services/businesses; product licensing; theme parks; education centers; government/nonprofit entities; and brand/mass retail outlets.
As the founding Director of the Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation, Dr. Arthur Molella developed a wide range of publications, exhibitions, and programs exploring innovation and creativity as a subject, and innovation and creativity within the realm of exposition. Dr. Molella currently serves as Director Emeritus and as a senior lecturer in the Department of History of Science and Technology at Johns Hopkins University, as well as serving on the boards of the National Academy of Inventors and the MIT Museum.
John Richard is president of Essential Information, a nonprofit organization dedicated to encouraging citizens to become active and engaged in their communities. He also supervises staff at The Center for Study of Responsive Law, the hub of Ralph Nader’s public interest activities in Washington, which includes consumer protection and public policy. Mr. Richard also pioneered the uses of GIS and data visualization to understand policy impacts.
Formerly an Investigator at the Stowers Institute for Medical Research, Rong Li is a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Cell Biology and Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Whiting School of Engineering. Ms. Li brings a culturally fresh, direct, and actionable focus to complex questions, such as the prevention (not cure) of Cancer, through an understanding of the mechanisms of degeneration and aging. Ms. Li’s lab has recently discovered a third (mitochondrial) pathway for aging, which opens fields of research possibilities.
As a Director of Health Outcomes Research at Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas City, Missouri, Dr. John Spertus focuses on methods for assessing patients’ healthcare quality, and the use of information technology to guide medical decision-making based on risk-prediction models so that treatment can be safer, more cost-effective, evidence-based and patient-centered. Dr. Spertus was the first to develop evaluation strategies and instruments for predicting patient risks, which are now the gold standard for measuring patients’ symptoms, function, and quality of life. Dr. Spertus is also the recipient of the highly competitive Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Heart Association’s Quality of Care and Outcomes Research, which is given to researchers who have made extraordinary contributions to outcomes research and the improvement of cardiovascular care.