Meet The Team

Making transformational change safer and easier to manage.
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Our People

Shirin Ardakani Shirin Ardakani

Shirin Ardakani
Senior Experience Designer

Shirin Ardakani

Shirin Ardakani
Senior Experience Designer

shirin@bif.is


Shirin is a designer, strategist, and storyteller—a communicator with an entrepreneurial spirit. Driven by an insatiable curiosity and a deep empathy, she approaches each new project with a beginner’s mind.  One of her greatest strengths is enabling others to learn, grow, and feel safe sharing their experiences as users, ultimately uncovering actionable insights. She’s leveraged these skills across a spectrum of domains, most recently in higher-ed. She was a founding team member of a Stanford University exec-ed initiative, Worldview Stanford, that creates interdisciplinary “blended learning” (online + in person) experiences for professionals. She helped design, develop and deliver the online learning platform, multimedia content, on-site experience, and curriculum for Worldview’s four unique courses: The Science of Decision Making, Behind & Beyond Big Data, Environmental Risk & Resilience, and The Future of Food-Scenario Planning Training.

She began her eclectic career as a print designer for a boutique design firm in San Francisco, creating award-winning annual reports and identity systems for tech and biotech companies in Silicon Valley and the Northwest. She’s served as Creative Director for an international video game industry publication, helped develop an operations and community engagement strategy for a co-working space focused around social entrepreneurship, and co-created a business concept around food and cooking in the collaborative consumption space.

Shirin was born and raised in St. Louis and earned her design degree from the School of Fine Arts at Washington University, St. Louis. She has an MBA in Design Strategy from California College of the Arts (CCA) in San Francisco. CCA’s unique MBA program unites the perspectives of systems thinking, design and integrative thinking, sustainability, finance, entrepreneurship, and generative leadership into a holistic strategic framework.

After growing up and attending undergrad in the Midwest, she headed West for adventure and put down new roots in San Francisco. The opportunity to join the BIF team inspired her to shake things up again and explore the unique beauty and character of the Northeastern corner of the U.S. She’s starting out this next leg of her journey identifying as a Northern Californian with Midwestern undertones, but it probably won’t take long before a Northeastern flair shows up in the mix. No matter what part of the country she’s in, come Sunday you’ll probably find her sifting through troves of antique baubles while munching on kettle corn at the nearest flea market she can find.

Jessica Brown Jessica Brown

Jessica Brown
Student Experience Lab Manager

Jessica Brown

Jessica Brown
Student Experience Lab Manager

@bifsxl
jbrown@bif.is


Jessica works as the Student Experience Lab Manager at BIF. She is excited to combine her passion for education and transformative systemsÍ change in this role.

Originally from Canton, OH, she concentrated in Business, Entrepreneurship, and Organizations as an undergraduate at Brown University. Throughout her time at Brown, she engaged in conversations and courses around the basis of social identity and inequities. These experiences led her to organize in various ways around race, education, gender, and socioeconomic status. In 2014 she co-founded and served as Chief Business Development Officer at 1vyG, the inter-Ivy first-generation college student network. 1vyG serves to increase support, mobilize, and source best practices for first-generation college students She is excited to support the Student Experience Lab’s work across all levels of education and to be a part of more innovation within the education landscape.

Jessica enjoys dancing, eating pasta, and discussing social justice–especially as it relates to her Blackness. If you are a changemaker or disrupter, however you define yourself, you will likely get along with her.

Tori Drew Tori Drew

Tori Drew
Chief Operating Officer

Tori Drew

Tori Drew
Chief Operating Officer

@toridrew
tori@bif.is


Tori is Chief Operating Officer, overseeing BIF’s day-to-day operations as well as finance, staffing, project management, and technology. She has over 10 years experience scaling the organization, which has more than tripled its size during her time at BIF.

Prior to BIF, Tori was Director of Production, Online and Emerging Technologies for Columbia Records a division of Sony Music. She executive produced over 50 websites a year, for Columbia artists and labels; working with designers and programmers. Artists included, Aerosmith, Fiona Apple, Destiny’s Child, Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, Fugees, and Billy Joel. Tori also acted as a liaison between Columbia, Sony Music creative services, artists and management.

Tori holds a BA from Ohio Wesleyan University in theatrical production.

Victoria Guck Victoria Guck

Victoria Guck
Finance & Operations Manager

Victoria Guck

Victoria Guck
Finance & Operations Manager

@vguck
vguck@bif.is


Victoria has the heart of a teacher and the enthusiasm and optimism of a student. She loves to be involved and is excited to help out wherever she can. She is primarily focused on bookkeeping and administrative assistant duties at Business Innovative Factory.

Victoria earned her B. A. from Tufts University in English and a minor in WomenÍs Studies. She holds a RI Teaching Certificate in Secondary English and has over a dozen years of teaching under her belt; although she loves English, her passion is rooted in mathematics. She is also a world class sailor and enjoys being active both on and off the water.

Reid Henkel Reid Henkel

Reid Henkel
Senior Experience Designer

Reid Henkel

Reid Henkel
Senior Experience Designer

reid@bif.is


Reid has always been fascinated with people and human behavior. As an Experience Designer at BIF, he draws upon his background in psychology and design to understand users needs and employ a human-centered design process to change their experiences with the world around them. With a background in youth development, he is especially interested in using this approach to create innovative change within the world of education.

For his graduate thesis, Reid explored ways in which design can help high school students mitigate the effects of low-grade chronic stress. He partnered with a New York City public school, and created a ten-week curriculum that guided students through a series of design activities that built a greater awareness of how their stress manifested in their daily lives. He also has experience in workshop design and facilitation, as well as co-creation and participatory design.

He holds a BA in Psychology from Rice University in Houston, Texas. He also received an MFA in Transdisciplinary Design from Parsons School of Design, where he used design methodologies to address complex social issues.

Reid enjoys finding new places to eat, good music, and good company. You can probably find him exploring Providence on his bike (even in the cold winter months).

Saul Kaplan Saul Kaplan

Saul Kaplan
Founder and Chief Catalyst, Business Innovation Factory

Saul Kaplan

Saul Kaplan
Founder and Chief Catalyst, Business Innovation Factory

@skap5
saul.kaplan5@gmail.com


Saul Kaplan is the founder and Chief Catalyst of the Business Innovation Factory and author of The Business Model Innovation Factory: How to Stay Relevant when the World Is Changing.

Kaplan started BIF in 2005 with a mission to enable business model innovation. BIF makes transformational change safer and easier to manage for institutional leaders by helping them explore, test, and commercialize next practices and new business models.

Prior to BIF Kaplan served as the Executive Director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation and as the Executive Counselor to the Governor on Economic and Community Development.

Prior to his state leadership role Kaplan served as a Senior Strategy Partner in Accenture’s Health & Life-Science practice and worked broadly throughout the pharmaceutical, medical products, and biotechnology industry. Kaplan also spent eight years working for the Pharmaceutical Division of Eli Lilly and Company. As a Marketing Plans Manager, Kaplan assisted in developing the launch strategy and successful introduction of Prozac into the U.S. market.

Kaplan shares his innovation musings on Twitter (@skap5) and on Medium (@skap5).

Kaplan holds an MBA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute focusing on the strategic management of technology and a BS in Pharmacy from the University of Rhode Island.

Will Kammerer Will Kammerer

Will Kammerer
Patient Experience Lab Manager

Will Kammerer

Will Kammerer
Patient Experience Lab Manager

@BIFPxl


Will works as the Patient Experience Lab Manager at BIF where he intends on transforming healthcare systems to focus on creating a positive, human-centered experience for patients and their families. Prior to joining BIF, Will worked as a digital media marketing consultant where he learned how to maintain customer relationships, generate content and gained a deep understanding of multiple digital media platforms.

In college, he helped create a marketing strategy and organized a charitable event for Providence Bagel to benefit the Ronald McDonald House of Providence.

Will graduated from Providence College with a Bachelor’s degree in marketing. Will also attended the Paris School of Business and International Affairs in the fall of 2016 while studying abroad.

Outside of BIF, Will enjoys playing basketball, surfing, snowboarding, eating good food, learning fun facts, and supporting positive environmental projects by sharing articles on social media and participating in green movements.

Samantha Kowalczyk Samantha Kowalczyk

Samantha Kowalczyk
Senior Digital Designer

Samantha Kowalczyk

Samantha Kowalczyk
Senior Digital Designer

skowalczyk@businessinnovationfactory.com


Sam is BIF’s print-making, video-shooting, photo-taking digital sorcerer. She is also our resident bleepy-bloopy music enthusiast and full-time dog petter.

Stephanie Lanoue Stephanie Lanoue

Stephanie Lanoue
Talent Manager

Stephanie Lanoue

Stephanie Lanoue
Talent Manager

@StephanieLanoue
stephanie@bif.is


As Talent Manager, Stephanie is responsible for connecting people to projects. In this capacity, she improves processes, manages assignments and priorities, and develops growth plans for her colleagues. A former educator, she uses her insight into an individual’s strengths to provide impactful opportunities for implementation. Her passion for, and experience in design thinking, was kindled by BIF when she served as team captain in piloting TD4Ed (see BIF’s Student Experience Lab, Teachers Design for Education) in her school district. She led the charge by creating a ‘Tech Team’ which trained teachers and inspired them to utilize technology as a primary teaching tool.

Eli MacLaren Eli MacLaren

Eli MacLaren
Chief Market Maker

Eli MacLaren

Eli MacLaren
Chief Market Maker

@elithechef
eli@bif.is


Eli is Chief Market Maker, leading BIFʼs development efforts and is responsible for the start up and scale of the Experience Labs. With over a decade of experience in building and leading social ventures, Eli is an accomplished social innovator with a deep knowledge of the new platforms required to catalyze and scale social innovation.

Eli joined BIF after serving as the Executive Director of the Maine Women’s Fund, a public foundation creating lasting change by investing in the power of women and the dreams of girls in Maine. Eli is a systems thinker with a proven track record building institutions — setting strategic vision and direction, raising capital, managing and developing partnerships and growing and integrating cross-disciplinary teams.

Before leading the Maine Women’s Fund Eli served as Chief Program Officer at GlobalGiving, the first online philanthropic marketplace that enables donors to find and fund social entrepreneurs around the world. Prior to GlobalGiving Eli served as the International Director for Ashoka’s Citizen Base Initiative, where she worked with social entrepreneurs from around the world on strategies to finance and scale their work.

Eli holds a MS in Strategic Design from New School, Parson’s School of Design and a BA in International Service from American University.

Emily McGinnis Emily McGinnis

Emily McGinnis
Citizen Experience Lab Manager

Emily McGinnis

Emily McGinnis
Citizen Experience Lab Manager

@bifcxl
emily@bif.is


Emily is the Citizen Experience Lab Manager, a role in which she helps grow and engage an actionable network of innovators and organizations working to transform communities and promote citizen well-being. She also communicates and amplifies the message of the work being done in the lab.

Emily comes to BIF from the International Development field after spending four years with the Peace Corps in Peru, working first as a grassroots community development facilitator promoting youth leadership in a small, rural community for two years, and subsequently as a volunteer coordinator for the Youth Development program, and supporting national level education and gender equality programs at both CARE Peru, an international NGO, and the Peruvian governmentÍs Ministry for Women and Vulnerable Populations. She is a progressive millennial and an intersectional feminist, passionate about global poverty reduction, gender equality, social justice, environmental conservation, cultural diversity, community development and human rights of all kinds.

Emily has a BS in Foreign Service from Georgetown UniversityÍs Walsh School of Foreign Service where she graduated Cum Laude, majoring in International Politics and receiving a certificate in Latin American Studies (the equivalent of a minor at other institutions). She studied abroad at the Pontificia Universidad CatÑlica de ValparaÕso in ValparaÕso, Chile and also completed a summer Social Justice Immersion Program in Cochabamba, Bolivia, and was very involved in various campus clubs and volunteer activities„serving on the leadership board of EcoAction, an environmental club, writing for the university newspaper The Hoya, working as a research assistant for the Institute for the Study of International Migration, and volunteering in several education-related programs.

Outside of BIF, Emily has diverse interests but loves to read, write, travel (especially around Latin America), eat good food, enjoy live music, and spend time outdoors„hiking / trekking, running, white water rafting, surfing or soaking up the sun at Second Beach in Middletown, where she grew up. She has run two half marathons, spent four days rafting down the Amazon river and three in Costa RicaÍs Pacuare, descended (and ascended) the deepest canyon in the world (four times!), trekked the Cordillera Huayhuash in Peru and Torres del Paine in Chilean Patagonia, and visited Machu Picchu three times. While she considers herself a RI native (born in Newport!), she spent time living in San Francisco, CA; Madison, WI; Washington, DC; Charleston, SC; Vina del Mar, Chile; Arequipa and Lima, Peru; and outside London in the UK. She also really enjoys hanging with kids, „volunteering, babysitting, tutoring, mentoring, or kicking it with her many cousins („probably because she is basically still a big kid herself), and spending quality time with her family; she is the oldest of four!

Liz Ouk Liz Ouk

Liz Ouk
Office Coordinator

Liz Ouk

Liz Ouk
Office Coordinator

liz@bif.is


Liz comes to BIF after working in the Biotechnology industry for 12 years. She began her career as an Administrative Assist and evolved into positions including Customer Service and Project Management. Liz Served as the main liaison between customers, management and sales team in planning, scheduling and oversights of various jobs.

Outside of BIF, Liz enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, arts and craft, cooking, and creating her own recipes by using pass down recipe from her mother and adding her own touches to create more of a modern appeal and fresher taste.

Elizabeth Rodgers Elizabeth Rodgers

Elizabeth Rodgers
Marketing Manager

Elizabeth Rodgers

Elizabeth Rodgers
Marketing Manager

@TheBIF
elizabeth@bif.is


Elizabeth Rodgers brings over 10 years experience in marketing, communications, design and public relations to her role as marketing manager at Business Innovation Factory.

Elizabeth’s primary focus is to continuously drive thoughtful, brand building marketing programs to help drive business results and visibility. She had responsibility and oversight of digital and traditional communications, content creation, social media and the BIF website, as well as directing media relations and brand management.

Before joining BIF, Elizabeth has provided strategic guidance, communications, and strategy as well as produced online, print, and marketing collateral materials for a wide range of clients and organizations. She has had a diverse experience in both agency and client-side alike, bringing to the table a proven track record of year-over-year growth and consistent returns. Elizabeth is passionate about exemplary design, creativity, and innovative thinking, thriving on collaboration as well as the power of beautifully crafted, thoughtful messaging.

Elizabeth graduated with honors from Johnson & Wales University with a BS in Marketing and Advertising Communications with a concentration in International Business, completing four years of study in three.

She has a profound love for endless summers, surfing, and West Coast way of life peppered in with her native Maine roots complete with three dogs and a baby.

Isabelle Yisak Isabelle Yisak

Isabelle Yisak
Experience Designer

Isabelle Yisak

Isabelle Yisak
Experience Designer

@iyisak
isabelle@bif.is


As an Experience Designer, Isabelle brings her experience in participatory design, facilitation, and social research methods to translate data into meaningful knowledge that can serve people and spark transformative change. Ever curious about how our physical and social environments can encourage more civically engaged cities, she also enjoys watching people unlock their own creative confidence.

Her first encounter with BIF was as a participant in the Student Experience LabÍs prototype for an educational reality series, When I Grow Up. Prior to joining BIF as an Experience Designer, Isabelle worked in the Chicago nonprofit scene on sustainability issues including cross-sectoral efforts to build regional resilience to climate change via participatory design processes. Additionally, she co-founded and served as the Chief Strategist of Kaya Collaborative, a student-created nonprofit that aims to inspire, educate, and mobilize youth in the Philippine diaspora as partners in long-term, locally-led social change in the Philippines. Throughout its first year, she helped recruit students nationwide for the first cohort of the Kaya Co. Fellowship and injected principles of community-driven design into the fellowship program.

Isabelle earned her B.A. in Architectural Studies from Brown University with a stint abroad in Copenhagen studying Urban Design. Her academic career was the marriage of her interests in the built environment and human culture, and she is continually looking to expand her knowledge.

If you want her to talk your ear off about a particular subject, ask her about mapmaking, Studio Ghibli films, or pad Thai.

Kay Zagrodny Kay Zagrodny

Kay Zagrodny
Senior Experience Designer

Kay Zagrodny

Kay Zagrodny
Senior Experience Designer

kay@bif.is


Originally from Rhode Island, Kay Zagrodny is excited to apply her anthropology background as an Experience Designer at BIF. She is interested in coming to deeper understandings about human motivations and behaviors, and has performed research on populations living with HIV/AIDs, food systems, community development and microfinance organizations. Her worldview is influenced by her background in ethnographic research methods and passion for looking at how morals and values impact peopleÍs decision-making processes. Kay holds a B.A. in Anthropology from St. MaryÍs College of Maryland, and an M.A. in Anthropology with a concentration in globalization, development, and culture from the University of Memphis.

Our Board

Angela Blanchard

Angela Blanchard
President & CEO, Neighborhood Centers, Inc.

Angela Blanchard

Angela Blanchard
President & CEO, Neighborhood Centers, Inc.

@CajunAngela


Through her more than thirty years of experience, thought leader Angela Blanchard has reached an epiphany: A community should be defined by its strengths, resources, achievements and hopes – not its degree of “brokenness”. As a result of her unwavering and passionate efforts as president and CEO of Neighborhood Centers Inc., Blanchard has extended this community development framework throughout the Houston region to impact over 500,000 people a year. Under Angela’s vision and leadership, Neighborhood Centers remains the largest non-profit in Texas and is ranked in the top 1% of charitable groups in the nation.

Blanchard’s insightful knowledge of community revitalization and its impact on metropolitan areas, has garnered three invitations to the White House to meet with community development leaders, senior white house officials and President Barack Obama. Blanchard is honored to have advised the administration on the President’s Promise Zone Initiative and Ladders of Opportunity, which will work to ensure that all families, no matter where they live, have ladders of opportunity to the middle class.

An expert in Human Capital Development, Blanchard, has participated in The Brookings Institution Metropolitan Leadership Council. The “Met Council” serves as a leader in providing policy makers with research, analysis, and ideas that impact metropolitan areas. Blanchard’s paper in the publication, “Investing in What Works for America’s Communities”, a project sponsored by the Low Income Investment Fund and the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, highlights ideas of leading experts in community and economic development, academia, government policy, and philanthropy who offer entrepreneurial solutions to the national epidemic of poverty. Blanchard’s work has also afforded her participation and collaboration at the Clinton Global Initiative, where she offered insight on innovative investment approaches that help build community programs, grow local economies, promote thriving neighborhoods, and present investors with expanded opportunities for financial and social returns.

Blanchard has been featured in Fast Company Magazine, as one of 2013’s Top 1000 Most Creative People in the nation and as a Gen Flux Leader for adapting and leading during troubled and disruptive times. Her Business Innovation Factory speech entitled “Emerging after the Storm” and TEDxHouston talk outlined a powerful transformational model for community redevelopment with important implications for other efforts throughout the nation.

In addition to her work with Neighborhood Centers, Blanchard serves as a Board Member at the Greater Houston Partnership (GHP), the National Community Advisory Board for JP Morgan Chase and was recently appointed to the GHP Regional Workforce Development Task Force. She has spoken at a number of high-profile events, including the White House Social Enterprise and Opportunity Series and Executive Leadership Academy in Australia where she discusses key issues like disaster recovery and leading in a crisis. Blanchard has also presented at the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce: Immigration Summit and Panel, the Houston Rotary Club and the PolicyLink Equity Summit, and many others.

Saul Kaplan Saul Kaplan

Saul Kaplan
Founder and Chief Catalyst, Business Innovation Factory

Saul Kaplan

Saul Kaplan
Founder and Chief Catalyst, Business Innovation Factory

@skap5
saul.kaplan5@gmail.com


Saul Kaplan is the founder and Chief Catalyst of the Business Innovation Factory and author of The Business Model Innovation Factory: How to Stay Relevant when the World Is Changing.

Kaplan started BIF in 2005 with a mission to enable business model innovation. BIF makes transformational change safer and easier to manage for institutional leaders by helping them explore, test, and commercialize next practices and new business models.

Prior to BIF Kaplan served as the Executive Director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation and as the Executive Counselor to the Governor on Economic and Community Development.

Prior to his state leadership role Kaplan served as a Senior Strategy Partner in Accenture’s Health & Life-Science practice and worked broadly throughout the pharmaceutical, medical products, and biotechnology industry. Kaplan also spent eight years working for the Pharmaceutical Division of Eli Lilly and Company. As a Marketing Plans Manager, Kaplan assisted in developing the launch strategy and successful introduction of Prozac into the U.S. market.

Kaplan shares his innovation musings on Twitter (@skap5) and on Medium (@skap5).

Kaplan holds an MBA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute focusing on the strategic management of technology and a BS in Pharmacy from the University of Rhode Island.

Mickey Ackerman

Mickey Ackerman
Professor, Rhode Island School of Design

Mickey Ackerman

Mickey Ackerman
Professor, Rhode Island School of Design

@MickeyAckerman


An internationally recognized design leader, BIF’s Chief Design Strategist Mickey Ackerman has spent decades teaching designers how to define problems clearly, then solve those problems through multidisciplinary teamwork. For 15 years as the head of the Industrial Design department at the Rhode Island School of Design, Mickey established a portfolio of sponsored projects and created real-world design solutions for industry leaders such as Intel, Rubbermaid, Frigidaire, and General Mills. He also established strategic partnerships with the Harvard Business School, MIT Sloan School of Management, NASA, and Boston’s Center for Integration of Medicine and Innovative Technology, among many others. An educator at heart, Mickey is passionate about student-centered learning and serves on the board of directors for the Yestermorrow Design/Build School in Vermont and the Green School in Bali, Indonesia.

Whitney Johnson

Whitney Johnson
Thinker, Author, Speaker, Advisor, Coach

Whitney Johnson

Whitney Johnson
Thinker, Author, Speaker, Advisor, Coach

@johnsonwhitney


Whitney Johnson came to Wall Street through a secretarial side door and worked her way up to success. After eight years on Wall Street, she was an Institutional Investor-ranked equity research analyst and rated by Starmine as a superior stock-picker. However, despite the allure of Wall Street success, Johnson left equity research, walking away from Wall Street at what seemed to be the peak of her career.

After that personal disruption, Johnson became even better known for her insight that personal disruption is a critical driver for corporate innovation. She certainly had the credibility to apply the concept of disruption to personal journeys. She has worked alongside Clayton Christensen, who created and developed the theory of disruption that has been widespread in the business world since its publication in 1997. Johnson and Christensen co-founded Rose Park Advisors.

Developing and communicating her insight on personal disruption has brought Johnson widespread recognition. She was included on a 2015 list of the world’s most influential management thinkers, and named one of Fortune’s “55 Most Influential Women on Twitter” in 2014.

Johnson has written two books — the critically acclaimed Disrupt Yourself, and Dare, Dream, Do.

Kare Anderson

Kare Anderson
Help Yourself And The World Through Unexpected Connections And Collaboration

Kare Anderson

Kare Anderson
Help Yourself And The World Through Unexpected Connections And Collaboration

@KareAnderson


Kare Anderson speaks and writes about behavioral research-based ways to become more deeply and diversely connected. She has won awards as a writer both for NBC and for the Wall Street Journal. She speaks and writes regularly for Forbes and the Huffington Post on behavioral research-based ways to become more deeply connected. She firmly believes that learning to connect and collaborate more effectively can not only help us succeed, but can also foster collaborations that create opportunities to serve the greater good. “Kare forever changes how you see yourself and your world,” said David Rockefeller Jr., after hearing her speak.

Anderson also consults for clients such as Salesforce, Novartis, the San Francisco Giants, and The Skoll Foundation. Her books include Mutuality Matters, Moving From Me to We, and Getting What You Want. Anderson serves on the advisory boards of Gloopt, Raynforest, Watermark, and TEDxMarin, is a founding board member of Annie’s Homegrown, and the co-founder of nine political PACs.

Vala Afshar

Vala Afshar
Chief Digital Evangelist, Salesforce

Vala Afshar

Vala Afshar
Chief Digital Evangelist, Salesforce

@ValaAfshar


Vala Afshar is Chief Digital Evangelist at Salesforce.com. His prior role was Chief Marketing Officer, Extreme Networks. Prior role was CMO and Chief Customer Officer of Enterasys Networks responsible for global marketing and customer service and support.

He contributes weekly technology, business and leadership articles to Huffington Post, INC Magazine, and other publications.. He also hosts a weekly video show on CXO Talk with the top business executives in the world covering the topics of digital business transformation – digital marketing, information technology, and the changing role of CIOs, CMOs and CDOs. You can watch the weekly show here.

He also contributes to SlideShare covering digital business trends: His SlideShare presentations are approaching 1.5 million views.

You can also read his book about social business excellence here — here is the review in Forbes.

Bruce Linton

Bruce Linton
Executive Director, ingenuityNE

Bruce Linton

Bruce Linton
Executive Director, ingenuityNE


Bruce Linton is Executive Director of ingenuityNE, a non-profit established to plan and operate FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) programs throughout New England. Bruce has worked for many years with the Dean Kamen-led FIRST competition, which helps get K-12 students excited about science, technology, engineering, math and the environment and helps prepare them for a technologically-advanced workplace.

Christopher Meyer

Christopher Meyer
CEO, Nerve LLC

Christopher Meyer

Christopher Meyer
CEO, Nerve LLC

@ChrisMeyer16


Christopher Meyer is Chief Executive of Monitor Networks, a new addition to The Monitor Group. Located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Monitor Group is a family of professional service firms comprising management consulting, financial services, and capital and advisory services. Monitor Networks is a “human capital intermediary,” providing Monitor and its clients access to leading thinkers in business and science, and offering these individuals attractive opportunities.

Deb Mills-Scofield

Deb Mills-Scofield
CEO/Founder & Mentoring Maven, Mills-Scofield, LLC

Deb Mills-Scofield

Deb Mills-Scofield
CEO/Founder & Mentoring Maven, Mills-Scofield, LLC

@bluelobsternets


Deb Mills-Scofield, a storyteller at #BIF9 and #BIF2017, helps organizations create and implement innovation-based strategic plans. Deb is a Partner at Glengary LLC, an early-stage venture capital firm in Cleveland, Ohio, who has more than years of experience in strategic planning, execution and innovation with manufacturing, service and high-technology companies from large global companies to early-stage. A Brown University alumna, Deb previously worked at AT&T Bell Labs, where one of her designs is recognized as one of AT&T/Lucent’s top revenue-generating patents. She was instrumental in spearheading AT&T’s strategies and execution into e-commerce.

Michael Samuelson

Michael Samuelson
Health Promotion Pioneer, Adventurer, Author & Fine Art Photographer

Michael Samuelson

Michael Samuelson
Health Promotion Pioneer, Adventurer, Author & Fine Art Photographer

@mhsamuelson


Over the past 35+ years — from Boston to Brussels, London to Little Rock, Peoria to Paris and Harrisburg to Havana, Cuba — Michael Samuelson has lectured on leadership, health promotion, patient experience, health policy, disease prevention and the dynamics of behavior change. An author of five books and numerous articles on leadership and behavior change, his work has been featured on the ABC News program, 20/20, The CBS Morning Show, CNN and MSNBC as well as numerous national print publications including The New York Times, Boston Globe, The Lancet, Employee Benefit News, Business Week and USA Today.

His distinguished professional resume includes successful entrepreneur, intrapreneur, senior executive in the health insurance industry, CEO, university professor and US health policy advisor.

His writings, audio work and behavior change programs have been distributed to millions throughout the world and have been publicly endorsed by scientists, politicians, advocacy organizations, business leaders and media personalities including: George H.W. Bush, Betty Ford, C. Everett Koop, Ken Blanchard, Jim Prochaska, Dee Edington, Livestrong, and Larry King.

Michael completed his graduate studies at the University of Michigan, is a Vietnam Era veteran of the US Air Force (1967- 1971) and a recipient of the Commander’s Coin of Excellence from the US Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine.

Michael is an avid world trekker with high altitude mountain adventures logged in Asia, Europe, Africa, South America, Alaska and the US lower 48. All after the age of 50 and after being diagnosed with cancer. Wellness works!

Don Stanford

Don Stanford
Chief Innovation Officer at IGT formerly GTECH

Don Stanford

Don Stanford
Chief Innovation Officer at IGT formerly GTECH

@dlstanford


Donald L. Stanford is a founding member of GTECH and currently serves as its Chief Technology Officer and Technology Fellow.

Don began working for GTECH’s founders in 1979 as Manager of Software Development. Over 30 years, he has held every technical leadership position, including Vice President of Advanced Development and Chief Technology Officer. Stanford guided the growth of GTECH’s technology organization from a software staff of four in 1979 to its current worldwide deployment of over 1000 technology professionals. From 1986 until 1989 Don served on the GTECH Corporation Board. Under Don’s leadership GTECH advanced the state of the art in both transaction processing and wireless communications which enabled it to dominate its industry worldwide and install systems on 6 continents. Stanford earned a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations in 1972 and a Master’s in Computer Science/Applied Mathematics in 1977 from Brown University. Don serves on several boards including Times Squared Academy Charter School, Spectra Systems and the Business Innovation Factory. Don is a member of the R.I. Science and Technology Advisory Council.

In 2001 Don was appointed Adjunct Professor of Computer Science at Brown University and has been teaching undergraduates since 2002. He is also an Adjunct in the School of Engineering and and is an instructor in the Program in Innovation, Management and Entrepreneurship (PRIME). He serves on the Brown advisory councils to the President and the School of Engineering.

In 1999 Don received the Black Engineer of the Year Award for Professional Achievement. In 1999 he also received the Honorable Thurgood Marshall award for community service from the NAACP. In 2002 he received the Brown Graduate School’s Distinguished Graduate award and the R.I. Professional Engineer’s award for Community Service.

Don and his wife Jane live in Pawtucket, R.I. and St. Thomas, U.S.V.I.

Barry Svigals

Barry Svigals
Partner Emeritus, Svigals + Partners, LLP

Barry Svigals

Barry Svigals
Partner Emeritus, Svigals + Partners, LLP

@BSvigals


Artist, architect, writer and public speaker, Barry is the founder of Svigals + Partners, an architecture and art firm, whose mission is to nurture and inspire prosperous, compassionate communities. He believes we are all creative and that capacity needs to find expression in how we live and work together. Awakening creativity, we can participate in bringing to life our communities and more fully contribute to the world we inhabit. It can remind us that our struggles, our joys and sorrows, are shared. They are what bind us as a community.

Perhaps now more than ever, we need to feel again a sense of our collective humanity. Through creative engagement, Barry’s aim is to touch that commonality we all carry in our hearts. This has been his effort as both an artist and architect: to remember, and remind others, that we are born to be creative and we need to bring that creative spirit to our lives, our communities and the world.

Trained as an architect at the Yale School of Architecture, Barry also studied sculpture at the Ecole Nationale Superiere in Paris. Encompassing a wide range of clients, his firm’s architectural designs include projects for Yale University, Boston College and the University of Connecticut, as well as numerous public schools, including most recently, the new elementary school for Sandy Hook. Corporate clients include PepsiCo, Yale New Haven Hospital and the Metroplitan Museum of Art. He has also designed homes for Jane Pauley and Garry Trudeau as well as Keith Richards and Patti Hansen.

Over the last 35 years, he has taught and lectured at a number of academic institutions including the Yale School of Architecture, the Harvard School of Business, and Stamford University. His love of sculpture and figurative art led to its integration into the architecture of his firm, bringing back an historical tradition and providing a dimension which could give it deeper meaning. For this contribution to the practice of architecture, he was awarded the Fellowship to the American Institute of Architects.

Rob Taylor

Rob Taylor
Partner, Partridge Snow and Hahn

Rob Taylor

Rob Taylor
Partner, Partridge Snow and Hahn


Rob Taylor is a partner in the law firm of Partridge Snow and Hahn. Mr. Taylor has almost 20 years of experience in litigation and arbitration proceedings around the country. He also counsels clients on antitrust, unfair competition and other trade regulation issues. He received his J.D., magna cum laude, from Georgetown University Law Center and his B.A., cum laude, from Yale University. He is admitted to practice law in Rhode Island, Connecticut and the District of Columbia.

Alice Wilder

Alice Wilder
Director of R&D, Producer, and Writer, Blue’s Clues

Alice Wilder

Alice Wilder
Director of R&D, Producer, and Writer, Blue’s Clues

@alicewilder


As the Director of Research and Development and Producer/writer for Nick Jr.’s break-out preschool series Blue’s Clues, Alice Wilder as part of the creative team is responsible for all content and creative decisions related to every aspect of the series. She conducts all of the formative research used in the creation and ongoing production of the series, and all of its ancillary businesses including publishing, online, magazine, consumer products and special events. She is also one of the Developers of Blue’s Room, a literacy-based spin-off of Blue’s Clues.

Lorne Adrain

Lorne Adrain
Financial Representative, Northwestern Mutual

Lorne Adrain

Lorne Adrain
Financial Representative, Northwestern Mutual

@LorneAdrain


Lorne Adrain has a national life insurance practice focused on estate planning and corporate applications. He has worked with entrepreneurs and businesses across the country.  Mr. Adrain has also been an executive at AT&T and worked for ten years as an entrepreneur in the technology and environmental sectors. He was the founder of KindMark, a leader in the creation of software and technologies to advance philanthropy.

Mr. Adrain is an active philanthropic and community leader.  He was appointed by Rhode Island’s Governor Chafee as Chairman of the Rhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education and to the Rhode Island Board of Regents for Elementary and Secondary Education.  He was a candidate for Mayor of Providence. He has served Chairman of the University of Rhode Island Foundation and as vice president and director of the Harvard Business School Alumni Association. He has served or serves on the Boards of The Rhode Island Foundation, Big Picture Learning and The Business Innovation Factory. He is also founder of National Neighborhood Day and is co-founder of Social Venture Partners / Social Enterprise Greenhouse – Rhode Island and BetterProvidence.  Mr. Adrain has served as Chairman of the Rhode Island Special Olympics and President of the University of Rhode Island Alumni Association.   He has climbed Mounts Kilimanjaro, Elbrus, Aconcagua, Denali (McKinley) and other peaks in recent years to raise funds in support of women’s education, economic and health programs on Lake Atitlan, Guatemala and to support aspiring inner-city students from Providence.

Mr. Adrain has twice received Northwestern Mutual Life’s National Community Service Award and was recognized as their Most Exceptional Volunteer in the Nation.  He has also been honored with the Rhode Island Foundation Inspiring Partner Award, the Jefferson Award for Public Service, Leadership Rhode Island’s David E. Sweet Leadership Award and the Providence Rotary’s 100th Anniversary Community Leadership Award.  He is also an Eagle Scout and grew up washing pots and pans at Camp Yawgoog.

Mr. Adrain earned his MBA from the Harvard Business School, and a BS from the University of Rhode Island.  Mr. Adrain lives in Providence, RI and has four children.

Irwin Kula

Irwin Kula
President, The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership

Irwin Kula

Irwin Kula
President, The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership

@irwinkula


An internationally sought–after speaker, Rabbi Irwin Kula has inspired people worldwide by using Jewish wisdom to speak to all aspects of modern life and relationships. An engaged and thoughtful trader in the global marketplace of ideas, he led a Passover Seder in Bhutan; consulted with government officials in Rwanda; helped build cultural and interfaith bridges in Qatar; and met with leaders as diverse as the Dalai Lama and Queen Noor to discuss compassionate leadership in the 21st century. Across the U.S., he works constantly with religious, business and community leaders, corporate and family foundations, and religious and philanthropic institutions to promote leadership development and institutional change.

#RCUS Network

Unleashing the Adjacent Possible through Random Collisions of Unusual Suspects

Saul Kaplan Saul Kaplan

Saul Kaplan
Founder and Chief Catalyst, Business Innovation Factory

Saul Kaplan

Saul Kaplan
Founder and Chief Catalyst, Business Innovation Factory

@skap5
saul.kaplan5@gmail.com


Saul Kaplan is the founder and Chief Catalyst of the Business Innovation Factory and author of The Business Model Innovation Factory: How to Stay Relevant when the World Is Changing.

Kaplan started BIF in 2005 with a mission to enable business model innovation. BIF makes transformational change safer and easier to manage for institutional leaders by helping them explore, test, and commercialize next practices and new business models.

Prior to BIF Kaplan served as the Executive Director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation and as the Executive Counselor to the Governor on Economic and Community Development.

Prior to his state leadership role Kaplan served as a Senior Strategy Partner in Accenture’s Health & Life-Science practice and worked broadly throughout the pharmaceutical, medical products, and biotechnology industry. Kaplan also spent eight years working for the Pharmaceutical Division of Eli Lilly and Company. As a Marketing Plans Manager, Kaplan assisted in developing the launch strategy and successful introduction of Prozac into the U.S. market.

Kaplan shares his innovation musings on Twitter (@skap5) and on Medium (@skap5).

Kaplan holds an MBA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute focusing on the strategic management of technology and a BS in Pharmacy from the University of Rhode Island.

Elizabeth Rodgers Elizabeth Rodgers

Elizabeth Rodgers
Marketing Manager

Elizabeth Rodgers

Elizabeth Rodgers
Marketing Manager

@TheBIF
elizabeth@bif.is


Elizabeth Rodgers brings over 10 years experience in marketing, communications, design and public relations to her role as marketing manager at Business Innovation Factory.

Elizabeth’s primary focus is to continuously drive thoughtful, brand building marketing programs to help drive business results and visibility. She had responsibility and oversight of digital and traditional communications, content creation, social media and the BIF website, as well as directing media relations and brand management.

Before joining BIF, Elizabeth has provided strategic guidance, communications, and strategy as well as produced online, print, and marketing collateral materials for a wide range of clients and organizations. She has had a diverse experience in both agency and client-side alike, bringing to the table a proven track record of year-over-year growth and consistent returns. Elizabeth is passionate about exemplary design, creativity, and innovative thinking, thriving on collaboration as well as the power of beautifully crafted, thoughtful messaging.

Elizabeth graduated with honors from Johnson & Wales University with a BS in Marketing and Advertising Communications with a concentration in International Business, completing four years of study in three.

She has a profound love for endless summers, surfing, and West Coast way of life peppered in with her native Maine roots complete with three dogs and a baby.

Adam Hansen

Adam Hansen
VP Innovation, Ideas To Go, Inc.

Adam Hansen

Adam Hansen
VP Innovation, Ideas To Go, Inc.


Deb Mills-Scofield

Deb Mills-Scofield
CEO/Founder & Mentoring Maven, Mills-Scofield, LLC

Deb Mills-Scofield

Deb Mills-Scofield
CEO/Founder & Mentoring Maven, Mills-Scofield, LLC

@bluelobsternets


Deb Mills-Scofield, a storyteller at #BIF9 and #BIF2017, helps organizations create and implement innovation-based strategic plans. Deb is a Partner at Glengary LLC, an early-stage venture capital firm in Cleveland, Ohio, who has more than years of experience in strategic planning, execution and innovation with manufacturing, service and high-technology companies from large global companies to early-stage. A Brown University alumna, Deb previously worked at AT&T Bell Labs, where one of her designs is recognized as one of AT&T/Lucent’s top revenue-generating patents. She was instrumental in spearheading AT&T’s strategies and execution into e-commerce.

Christopher Rice

Christopher Rice
Principal Consultant, Christopher S. Rice Consulting

Christopher Rice

Christopher Rice
Principal Consultant, Christopher S. Rice Consulting


Dan Ryder

Dan Ryder
Education Director, Success & Innovation Center, Mt. Blue Campus/Maine RSU 9

Dan Ryder

Dan Ryder
Education Director, Success & Innovation Center, Mt. Blue Campus/Maine RSU 9


Dara Goldberg

Dara Goldberg
President/Founder, Mindsets Consulting, Inc.

Dara Goldberg

Dara Goldberg
President/Founder, Mindsets Consulting, Inc.


Dustin Haisler

Dustin Haisler
Giving Citizens A Voice In The Public Sector Through Technology

Dustin Haisler

Dustin Haisler
Giving Citizens A Voice In The Public Sector Through Technology

@DustinHaisler


Q&A WITH DUSTIN HAISLER

What attracted you to the BIF Summit?

All the people who attend the BIF Summit and speak at the BIF Summit are people I’d love to be trapped on a deserted island with for extended periods of time. They are thinkers, innovators, people I respect and follow, people who are challenging conventional norms in society. The BIF Summit is an opportunity to learn and see them in action, to connect with people with shared visions and purposes. And I’m looking forward to not just sharing my story but hearing what other people are working on, and coming back with lots of ideas and new friends to help advance our mission.

Tell us just a bit about the subject of your BIF Summit story.

I’ll talk about the role people have in facilitating and driving change and innovation in the public sector, and what happens when you give people a voice in government. That’s considered something government agencies aren’t open to. But what happens when you actually do that? What kind of change can you drive in the community, not just the government agency itself?

What, to you, is the value of sharing stories?

Stories are opportunities to hear ideas and to connect different ideas all in one place. A good story will inspire you, inform you, and activate you. Stories drive change by activating people to learn more that they can do. And stories allow us to build on each other’s work. It’s very difficult to pore through pages of academic research — the simplest way to start that process is with a story.

Do you have a motto, or “words to live by”? If so, what is it?

I have one word — empowerment. The role empowerment plays in change is embedded in my talk. Often you’ll read a business book on transformation, and it’s all about leadership. But it’s not sustainable if it’s all driven from the top. True, sustainable change happens when you empower people to lead that change themselves, to create change on their own.

What’s one thing (or more, if you like) would you like Summit attendees to know about you before they hear your story?

What most people don’t realize is that I’m an accidental public servant. I had a career in banking and then was recruited to be the Chief Financial Officer for a city. It wasn’t something I’d planned on, once I got there it opened his eyes to the ability of government and people to work together and do so much together. It became my driving passion.

Dave Gray

Dave Gray
Founder, XPLANE

Dave Gray

Dave Gray
Founder, XPLANE


Elyse Burden

Elyse Burden
CEO, Real World Scholars

Elyse Burden

Elyse Burden
CEO, Real World Scholars


Marshall Votta

Marshall Votta
Chief Market Officer, RowdMap, Inc.

Marshall Votta

Marshall Votta
Chief Market Officer, RowdMap, Inc.


Matt Murrie

Matt Murrie
Chief Curiosity Curator, What If...?360

Matt Murrie

Matt Murrie
Chief Curiosity Curator, What If...?360


Michael Crawford

Michael Crawford
Director of Strategy and Partnerships, Real World Scholars

Michael Crawford

Michael Crawford
Director of Strategy and Partnerships, Real World Scholars


Mike Baldwin

Mike Baldwin
Market Access Manager, Boehringer-Ingelheim

Mike Baldwin

Mike Baldwin
Market Access Manager, Boehringer-Ingelheim


Molly Cantrell-Kraig

Molly Cantrell-Kraig
Founder, Women With Drive Foundation

Molly Cantrell-Kraig

Molly Cantrell-Kraig
Founder, Women With Drive Foundation


Paul Higgins

Paul Higgins
Emergent Futures Pty, Ltd.

Paul Higgins

Paul Higgins
Emergent Futures Pty, Ltd.


Tim McDonald

Tim McDonald
Purveyor of Purpose, CreatingIs LLC

Tim McDonald

Tim McDonald
Purveyor of Purpose, CreatingIs LLC


Cathryn Hrudicka

Cathryn Hrudicka
Founder/Chief Imagination Officer, Creative Sage

Cathryn Hrudicka

Cathryn Hrudicka
Founder/Chief Imagination Officer, Creative Sage


Phil Komarny

Phil Komarny
VP Innovation, Salesforce.com

Phil Komarny

Phil Komarny
VP Innovation, Salesforce.com


Matthew Fritz

Matthew Fritz
Founder, Advanced Vectors

Matthew Fritz

Matthew Fritz
Founder, Advanced Vectors


Philip McCreight

Philip McCreight
Founder, Beer and Napkins

Philip McCreight

Philip McCreight
Founder, Beer and Napkins


Tony Silbert

Tony Silbert
Partner, Spartina Consulting

Tony Silbert

Tony Silbert
Partner, Spartina Consulting


Jonathan Follett

Jonathan Follett
Principal, GoInvo

Jonathan Follett

Jonathan Follett
Principal, GoInvo


Ken Gordon

Ken Gordon
Content, Conversation, & Community Strategist

Ken Gordon

Ken Gordon
Content, Conversation, & Community Strategist


Doug Williams

Doug Williams
Sr. Director, Strategic Services, Spigit

Doug Williams

Doug Williams
Sr. Director, Strategic Services, Spigit


Mark Babbitt

Mark Babbitt
President and Senior Partner, WorqIQ

Mark Babbitt

Mark Babbitt
President and Senior Partner, WorqIQ


Mark Brand

Mark Brand
CEO, MB Inc.

Mark Brand

Mark Brand
CEO, MB Inc.