Alejandro Juárez Crawford
Alejandro’s mission is to expand the pool of people equipped to make solutions real. He is a senior consultant at Acceleration Group, where he helps ventures and nonprofits innovate and grow to generate sustainable impact and stimulate inclusive economic development. He is the professor of entrepreneurship for Bard’s MBA in Sustainability, teaches digital innovation at the Zicklin School of Business at Baruch, and has launched change-makers and innovators across half dozen universities and an array of client firms. He is also a co-founder of the Mountaintop Program, which challenges high school students to imagine solutions to the world’s most pressing problems, in a dynamic exchange with individuals who have created such solutions in practice. He earned his BA from Cornell University and his MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.
Thomas Gold, PhD
Tom’s mission is to build the capacity of social ventures through the effective use of research, data and evidence. For the past 18 years, Tom has held leadership positions focusing on research, measurement and evaluation in higher education, local government and nonprofit institutions. The policy reforms that were implemented as a result of his work have impacted the lives of millions of youth and young adults in low income neighborhoods and communities of color. His work has ranged from leading major studies in New York City’s public schools to spearheading the thought leadership and research efforts of the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, the leading entrepreneurship education organization in the United States. Tom has written extensively on urban education, entrepreneurship and European politics. Tom is a former Fulbright Fellow who received his BA. from New York University and his Ph.D. in Political Science from the New School for Social Research.
Nevaris is a designer, entrepreneur, consultant, media producer/performer, and brand strategist from New York City. He is a stakeholder in Tangible Creative and Acceleration Group and co-founder of Nolej Studios and the Uncomun Festival. Nevaris teaches entrepreneurship at FIT and previously taught E-Business at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering. He studied Fine Art at Bard College and has a degree in Design and Technology from the Parsons School of Design. As a producer/performer has worked with artists such as Grammy winner Bill Laswell, and late Hall of Fame keyboardist Bernie Worrell among many others.
Daniel is a writer, researcher and strategist with a history of working with diverse social impact organizations. As a consultant with Acceleration Group, Daniel uses his experience as an analyst at Urban Partnership Bank, his education at the University of Chicago, and the range of concepts in Acceleration Group’s toolkit to advise clients as they set strategies to produce social impact. Daniel has also worked as a research consultant for the Creative Impact and Experience Lab, where he’s been involved in several projects that seek to create social change through cultural innovation. Beyond these roles, Daniel has been involved with organizations that work in diversity and inclusion, international development, financial inclusion, and humanitarian aid. Across his work, Daniel has been driven by his belief that the world can become a more just and equitable place, and he is committed to turning his belief into action.
Zachary is a writer and researcher working with Acceleration Group to promote bottom-up innovation and expand access to entrepreneurship across all income-levels, backgrounds, and genders. While earning his B.S. in Entrepreneurship at the Fashion Institute of Technology, he worked closely with the tools and insights that Acceleration Group uses in its innovation and social impact work. He developed fluency with the entrepreneurial process and now, as an associate consultant, he shares his knowledge with entrepreneurs to support them and facilitate their journeys to launching new ventures.
Will, the founder of Speakable, is a communications and process specialist who specializes in helping organizations with mission-critical presentations. An adjunct professor of project management and public speaking at NYU, Will helps individuals, organizations and teams maximize their public speaking skills. In the past five years, 46 out of 46 clients coached by Will have won or achieved their goals, often against extreme odds. He has coached NYU Wagner to two national titles and three second place finishes in five years at a national graduate school presentation competition, he has coached a start-up to win a national venture capital competition with a $500k first prize (over almost 300 competitors), and he has helped an organization go from fourth place prior to oral presentations to winning a $450 million pitch to the City of New York over Accenture, Oracle
Director and Producer, A-Ray Productions
Amy is a communications strategist and digital media expert specializing in connecting organizational strategy with sustainability initiatives and storytelling. A life-long environmentalist, holistic health and social justice advocate, Amy believes that successful and sustainable businesses and non-profit organizations are key to creating a thriving regenerative economy. An award-winning documentary filmmaker (Two Angry Moms) and published book author (Lunch Wars), Amy has written, produced and/or edited hundreds of hours of TV and web programming. She is a sought-after public speaker at conferences, universities and in the media. Amy has been interviewed on NPR’s Justice Talking and Positive Discipline, Fox News Tonight, CNN’s Your Bottom Line and Good Morning America. She and her work have been featured on the cover of USA Today, in The New York Times, Redbook, People Magazine, Huffington Post and on Rachel Ray and CBS’s The Doctors.
Chief Dream Explorer, BloomSpace
Lee serves as the Chief Dream Explorer and the co-founder of BloomSpace. BloomSpace is a playful and purpose- driven innovation consultancy that focuses attention on exploring human potential through Design Thinking/human-centered design, Lego Serious Play, music, and story telling. Lee has taught and facilitated numerous workshops on Design Thinking and Lego Serious Play at various universities and organizations throughout the USA. She believes that by focusing our attention to the human-centered design process and experiences, we can arrive at solutions that are truly delightful and amazing.
Coordinator, Youth@Work Strategic Partnership on Youth Employability and Entrepreneurship of Erasmus+ National Agencies
Raluca’s mission is to create value for individuals, organizations and communities by empowering and connecting them through projects, platforms and partnerships across borders and sectors. She has worked for the “Education, Youth, Sport and Culture” Directorate General of the European Commission and for the SALTO-YOUTH Participation resource centre in Brussels Belgium, where she specialized in EU policies and programs in the fields of youth education, training, and entrepreneurship.
Currently based in Paris France, Raluca is the coordinator of the Youth@Work Strategic Partnership of Erasmus+ National Agencies, a transnational institutional alliance aiming to advance youth employability and entrepreneurship by using the Erasmus+ EU Program. She also consults on project development and event facilitation in the areas of entrepreneurship, social inclusion, and civic and political participation of young people. The capacity-building, networking and knowledge sharing events that she has organized have positively influenced thousands of NGOs, community-based organizations, public institutions, social enterprises and young people.