Cyndi is the co-editor of the Big Questions in Creativity book series and co-author of the books Weaving Creativity into Every Strand of Your Curriculum, 20 Lessons for Weaving Creativity into your Curriculum (coming Spring, 2021), and My Sandwich Is a Spaceship: Creative Thinking for Parents and Young Children.
Some of her projects include: working with educators to bring creative thinking into the classroom, connecting communities of creative thinkers via social media, and designing and running a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Everyday Creativity. She is the recipient of the President's Medal for Excellence in Teaching 2018 by SUNY Buffalo State, was Buffalo Business First, Woman of Influence 2018 for her work in creativity, and was featured in the New York Times article titled, "Creativity Becomes an Academic Discipline."
Cyndi has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theater, a Master of Science in Creativity and Change Leadership, and a Doctorate of Education in Curriculum, Teaching, and Learning, all of which she uses to help ignite creativity in education around the world. In her spare time, she can be found singing and dancing with her two children, propagating plants, and trying to find the world’s best slice of pizza.
Matthew blogs at DadsforCreativity.com and co-hosts the Fueling Creativity podcast. He also produces the occasional low-budget documentary film. Matthew currently serves on the Advisory board at St Gregory the Great Elementary School in Danbury, CT; he is also in the process of setting up a small UK-based charity dedicated to helping post-care foster children in London, England.
She holds an M.S in Creativity and Change Leadership from SUNY Buffalo State, where she also received the Mary Murdock Creative Spirit Award in 2020. She also earned a bachelor's degree in Psychology and two graduate certificates (Educational Psychology and Educational Management), both from universities in Brazil.
She has over two decades’ experience as a teacher and mentor. Before becoming a teacher, Katie worked in marketing, public relations, and event planning. Throughout her career, Katie has focused on helping her clients and students find their best selves. In addition, Katie uses creativity to teach social-emotional learning, creative problem solving, communication skills, team building, and personal well-being.
Her love for learning and research started at Luther North High School in the heart of Chicago and carried over as she earned a B.A. in English from Southern Illinois University. Years later, Katie wanted to focus on making a difference in the lives of teens and furthered her education by receiving a Master’s in Teaching and a Master’s in Education Administration. She is constantly researching the importance of embracing creativity and a new way of implementing strategies to assist individuals in finding their best selves.
Katie’s passion for these areas allowed her to start non-profit organizations, assist school districts in writing SEL curriculum, design programs for adults and students to encourage collaboration and communication and mentor new teachers to find their voice. As a result, Katie has won several Teacher of Excellence and Outstanding Educator awards.
As a mom in a blended family, Katie works hard to bring an energetic, joyful, and creative spirit to her children and grandchildren. She finds time to embrace creativity through crocheting, painting, writing, and reading fiction.
Barney has traveled to Israel, Vietnam, Spain, and India, to speak about his work. The United States State Department had him visit China and Russia as part of a cultural exchange program, where he spoke about creativity, the beauty of making mistakes, and where ideas come from. His books have won numerous awards, including NAPPA Gold Awards, Publishers Weekly and Kirkus Starred Reviews. Most recently, Melinda Gates chose Beautiful Oops as one of the top three books every child should read.
Barney has been writing and illustrating picture books since 1981. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two dogs. They have two adult children who often stop by to see what new books are being written and for dinner. In his spare time, Barney can be found playing one of his eclectic guitars, and babysitting Waffle Monster, his grand-dogger.
Her acumen for applied creativity is evident in her diverse range of projects and clients that include large organizations, entrepreneurs, governments, academics, not-for-profits, the armed forces, educators, parents, and children all over the world. Her clients range in age from five to “undisclosed,” and she has been known to provide on-demand creative conversations to just about anyone (and anywhere) including, but not limited to, complete strangers in coffee shop queues and Marines at the Pentagon!
Ismet was recently featured in TIME magazine’s special edition on the Science of Creativity for her creative approach to parenting and for the work she does globally to weave creativity into education. She is a graduate of the International Center for Studies in Creativity at Buffalo State where she received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence, the President’s Medal for Outstanding Graduate Student at Buffalo State, and the Firestien Family Creative Achievement award for her work in the field of creative thinking and facilitation.
John is a Professor Emeritus at the State University of New York, Buffalo State's Center for Applied Imagination and a Visiting Professor for two universities in Colombia. John was the Program Director of his university's Service-Learning and Civic Engagement program in Myanmar. He co-founded a nonprofit organization to support the Burmese refugees in the United States to become more confident in their creative thinking to address challenges facing them as they become accustomed to living in a different country.
John is a Fulbright Scholar. He completed his Fulbright assignment at the Universidad Autónoma de Bucaramanga (UNAB for short) located in Colombia. He helped UNAB change its organizational culture to become the first creative campus in Latin America.
John is also a Facilitator at Knowinnovation, a consulting firm dedicated to getting scientists to have the kinds of engaging conversations that result in interdisciplinary breakthroughs and new innovative research.
Some organizations that have benefited from his training and organizational development expertise include IBM, Coca-Cola, British Home Office, National Science Foundation, NASA, Harvard University's Department of Evolutionary Biology, National Oceanographic Laboratory System, The Pew Charitable Trusts, U.S. Embassy in Myanmar, and the United States Department of Agriculture.
John earned his Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology from the University of Manchester, England, and an M.S. in Creativity and Change Leadership from the State University of New York. He co-authored articles in business, engineering, and innovation journals. In 2017, he co-authored a book "Organizational Creativity: A Practical Guide for Innovators and Entrepreneurs" by SAGE Publications.
Her work has been recognized by The White House, Ashoka Changemakers, National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC), and Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). Prior to InnovatorsBox®, Monica was a nuclear nonproliferation policy expert. She holds an M.A. from SAIS Johns Hopkins University in Strategic Studies and International Economics and a B.A. from Boston University.
He served as a classroom teacher for 18 years teaching everything from 3rd graders to seniors in high school. He is currently the gifted services coordinator for Pickerington Local Schools where he lives with his wife and two daughters. He is also an adjunct professor at the University of Cincinnati. You can follow him on Twitter @the_gifted_guy or visit his website at thegiftedguy.com where you can access blogs, resources, and view presentations he has given.
playful sandbox. In it, there are methods that design cultures of innovation,
creative problem-solving sessions, biomimic analogies, design thinking
bootcamps, edutainment games and creativity tools. A TEDx and keynote
speaker, she works with mavericks and intra-preneurs to transform their work starting with the smallest cultural shifts that nurture creative environments in organizations.
Her bottom-top approach help translate ideas into multi-disciplinary
programs and develop internal innovation functions and squads. From The
“Creative Institute for Toronto’s Young Leaders”, to the Montreal-based
crowd-sourced powerhouse “My Arabic Story”, to the Dubai-based design-led
innovation consultancy “sajory” with its masterclasses and curated giftbox “IMAGINESS” that emphasizes imagining happiness at work.
Her artwork has been shown in over ninety exhibitions nationally and internationally and in the 1980's she received two Pennsylvania Council on the Arts grants for collaborative choreography. She has completed many artist's residencies at sites such as Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Jentel Foundation, Arte Studio Ginestrelle (Italy) and Centrum Franz Masereel (Belgium).
She is a co-founder of Integrative Teaching International (https://www.integrativeteaching.org/) and the founding editor of its main publication, Future Forward. She is also the author of Launching the Imagination: A Comprehensive Guide to Basic Design, one of the best-selling design textbooks in North America.
She received a Southeastern College Art Association Excellence in Teaching Award in 2010, the FATE (Foundations in Art: Theory and Education) Master Educator award in 2009 and the National Council of Arts Administrators Award of Distinction in 2008.
Professor Stewart is now working remotely on her second Fulbright Fellowship, a collaboration with the Atlantic Centre for Creativity. In this role, she has conducted over twenty interviews exemplars of creativity in the Atlantic provinces of Canada. Three of these interviews appear in her current book which is titled Creative Inquiry: From Ideation to Implementation.
She started her career as a computer scientist and worked for several years at top global hi-tech companies such as IBM and Mercury. Working at the forefront of this cutting-edge industry helped her understand the impact of technology on the future of work.
Additionally, as Ortal watched her three sons' journeys through primary school, she realised they were not being prepared for this future.
While Ortal saw the movement towards STEM as going in the right direction, essential skills such as creative thinking and the development of an innovative mindset, to name a few, were being left out. Having a solid technological background and being a Design Thinking practitioner, she could see that there was a need and a way to bridge this gap.
Therefore, Ortal co-founded “Glittering Minds” and created an innovative school program. This program helps teachers enhance their teaching and amplify their impact by using Design Thinking as a framework for learning.
Ortal is also an author and an international speaker.
She wrote the book “Think Unique- Your comprehensive guide to cultivating tomorrow’s innovators through PROJECT-BASED LEARNING ” which empowers teachers to create tomorrow’s innovators in their classrooms. This book provides teachers with the knowledge and tools required to set up children for success in the 21st century.
She also wrote the book “Think Unique - Raising a successful, innovative child”, which guides parents on how to raise a child who is innovative and able to thrive in an ever-changing world.
Outside of the college, Clayton has been a member of several nationally and provincially funded projects for Literacy Northwest, Connect Strategic Alliances, College Sector Committee for Adult Upgrading and Skillplan.
Clayton earned his Honours Bachelor of Arts from York University and his Master of Arts in Education from the University of Phoenix. During his spare time, Clayton enjoys bowling, slo-pitch, kayaking, and in-line skating.
Jim Friedman is a Cincinnati native and resident Wordsmith/Dreambuilder who may be best known for creating television shows and movies. He is a serial creative entrepreneur. In addition to his broadcasting ventures, he has created national marketing campaigns; been granted multiple patents; written books; written, recorded, and performed music; and danced the hokey pokey at age three on a television kid's show.
Since 2008 he has taught Creativity and Entrepreneurship at Miami University and is a frequent speaker on topics of creativity and personal branding. Friedman’s coaching centers on connecting creative/innovative thinking to entrepreneurship for companies and individuals across the country. He is also Chief Steward for World Creativity & Innovation Week/Day (April 15-21).
Friedman grew up in Wyoming, Ohio (Go Cowboys). He graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a B.S. in Design (Go Bearcats). He holds a doctorate in communication (Ph.D.) which he earned from the Union Institute and a doctorate in Creativity (Cr.D.) which he made up himself. He has won 65 Emmy Awards, has been inducted into three Halls of Fame, and is recognized for his creativity and effectiveness in the classroom.
Besides wordsmithing, Friedman enjoys asking questions, finding second right answers, silencing his voice of judgment, taking risks, and failing often and well.
Holly leads and facilitates creativity and design innovation methods to global audiences. Year-round she guides creative beginners to their creative potential from such institutions as Parsons School of Design, Culinary Institute of Barcelona, and the Hynes Institute of Entrepreneurship & Innovation at Iona College. Holly speaks to global organizations on creativity and design and has presented at the ADC*E European Creativity Festival at Disseny Hub Barcelona - Design Museum Barcelona. A lifelong creative practitioner herself, Holly has years of professional experience as a performing artist, designer, and marketing & branding professional. She blogs about the creative process on her website http://www.hollyblondin.com and connects with her audience in a weekly newsletter - Creative Bites. In addition to her passion for all things related to creativity, Holly is an advocate for literacy, arts & culture, and education. Holly is a resident of Barcelona.
MBA, Marketing and Entrepreneurship - Zicklin School of Business, Baruch College
BFA, Musical Theatre Performance - Western Michigan University
His artistic background and experiences through the fine arts has helped him to recognize the significance of creativity, but those experiences helped to illuminate the idea that creative development doesn't have to be secluded to fine arts oriented domains.
Vincent is currently a doctoral student at Lesley University and wants to use his research to bridge the divide between research and the application of those ideas.
Najja has earned a B.A. in Psychology from University at Buffalo and a Master of Science in Creativity and Change Leadership from the State University of New York, Buffalo State, where he is now an Adjunct Lecturer. He is also a decorated disabled veteran of the United States Air Force, where he honorably served in Operation Enduring Freedom. In addition to working with scientists around the world, Najja works with Buffalo’s local youth. He has an uncanny ability to get moody teenagers to care about creativity and entrepreneurship. Najja is a fan of science, a cheerleader for ideas and an empowering trainer. His talents are equalled only by his stylish hair and amazing collection of fashionable sweaters. Najja greets us from the lower East Side of Buffalo, New York. His greatest inspiration for integrity, service and enterprising excellence is being a father to his marvelous son, and stewarding culture.
Beverly was recently accepted into the Transformative Studies doctoral program at the California Institute of Integral Studies, which will start in the fall. Her hope is to become a modern-day alchemist, blending her key interests of creativity, alternative education, and archetypal themes into a transformative program for at-risk students.
Artist. Expressive arts facilitator. Yoga practitioner. Devisor. Melinda uses intermodal arts therapy intervention approaches to performance, facilitation, and community outreach and has worked in a range of educational, therapeutic, and artistic settings. As a teaching artist for the Coalition for Hispanic Family Services in Bushwick, Brooklyn Melinda worked to develop curriculum for school aged children promoting literacy through the use of a variety of artistic modalities. She also employed this multimodal method in a parenting through the arts program with female inmates in a maximum-security prison and with adolescents at a residential treatment center in upstate New York. As a physical theater performer and clown, Melinda traveled to New Orleans with Clowns Without Borders to perform and facilitate workshops with children and adults in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
For over 10 years Melinda helped to develop and direct the sibling support program at Friends of Karen, a not-for-profit organization providing financial and emotional support to families dealing with the life threatening illness of a child. She holds a master’s degree in expressive arts therapy from the European Graduate School in Switzerland. Research interests include Poesis and the human impulse to shape our world, expressive arts as a creative or aesthetic process, the effects of trauma and the relationship with play, and the use of clowning and it's effectiveness on shifting traumatic experiences to the integration of self growth. Melinda specializes in providing supportive sessions for children (particularly siblings of kids with special needs,) and adults. She specializes in working with new parents, as well as those facing illness related crisis, and provides arts based grief and bereavement support. Now working in private practice, she continues to help children and adults to navigate life’s challenges through art making and play. Find out more about Melinda’s work at https://www.pleasantvilletherapy.com/melinda-ferraraccio-lcat
James’ research program focuses on individual and contextual factors that contribute to early childhood development and learning. He is particularly interested in the ways caregivers, teachers, and early learning environments influence children’s divergent thinking and creative problem-solving skills. His scholarship also explores new methodologies and measures for studying various dimensions of early childhood creative thinking, learning, and development.
In his current appointment, James serves as a member of a research-practice partnership that was formed to co-develop and implement computer science and robotics education for culturally and linguistically diverse preschoolers. While the overarching goals of this project are to promote children’s computational thinking skills and sense of belonging in computer science and STEM-related fields, James has witnessed the potential of collaborations among researchers, parents, educators, and community leaders to promote creative parenting and teaching practices, nurture children’s creative thinking skills, and enhance children’s general learning experiences.
Ms. Frazier is a member of the Creativity for Kids Advisory Board, providing support in developing a new line of creative learning educational products. (Fabel Castell USA). She has made presentations at world, national, and state gifted conferences on topics including Creativity, Creative Problem Solving, Service Learning, and Integrating the Arts. She is co-founder of Touching the Future Today LLC, which provides professional development to teachers and creative arts schools locally and nationally. She recently acquired a nonprofit designation, “Educational Artistry,” to help schools finance professional development and creative student programs.
Called “The Gold Standard” of creativity training by his clients, he has presented programs in creativity to over 600 organizations nationally and internationally ranging from major fortune 500 corporations, government agencies, universities, associations and churches.
Dr. Firestien is an associate professor and senior faculty at the Center for Applied Imagination at SUNY Buffalo State, President of Innovation Resources, Inc. and a guest lecturer at the University at Buffalo School of Medicine.
Roger is the author of six books, including Leading on the Creative Edge and Why didn’t I think of that? His latest book: Create in a Flash: A leader’s recipe for breakthrough innovation is now available worldwide.
His expert views on creativity have been reported in Fast Company, Forbes, Investor’s Business Daily, INC and The New York Times.
You can find his new nine-part video series on innovation on the Open-Sesame on-line learning platform.
Dr. Firestien’s seventh book tentatively titled: What you think IS the problem, is NOT the problem, is scheduled for release in early 2023.
Known for her work as a Project Management Professional (PMP) and master facilitator of Creative Problem Solving (CPS), International Deliverables, LLC provides professional services in organizational development including change, leadership and team development on project management, problem solving and the innovation process. Teresa is a certified facilitator of FourSight, the leading assessment on how individuals and teams approach problem solving and innovation.
Since 2017, Teresa has provided facilitation and training to over 80K individuals, teams and organizations remotely and in-person. In 2019, International Deliverables, LLC was recognized by the Small Business Administration as a Home-based Business of the Year.
Dave seeks to support the personal growth of people in discovering lives of creative change, and joining others in bringing our species into a dynamic, restorative journey aligned with our native biophilia.
From 2015 to the present, Dave has served as a mindfulness teacher gaining much of his background in the traditions of the Himalayan Institute.
Dave earned his Graduate Certificate in Creativity and Change Leadership in 2009 from SUNY Buffalo State. Dave is the creator of the Change Leader Inventory (CLI), a life skills assessment tool for his clients to help them gain an understanding in their capacity and assets in living a life of creative change.
Dave served as an environmental sustainability consultant during his years as President of Sustainable Earth Solutions, Inc where he training teams of professionals in creating “green teams” within their organization.
From 1973 – 2007, Dave taught middle school and high science. His last 20 years of teaching were dedicated to teaching high school environmental science.