Erin Engelke, APR is the Vice President of Communications and Public Relations for Feed The Children, one of the largest charities in the U.S. She has more than 14 years of public relations, marketing and communications experience in the corporate, advertising agency and nonprofit arenas. She has been recognized as The Journal Record Achievers Under 40 2010 and 2013 40 Under 40 honor from okcbiz.com. She is passionate about work/life balance, nonprofit marketing, and global issues, having traveled and studied around the world. Erin is also a proud mother of three and a contributing writer for the national working mom website Work It! Mom.
David Ray joined the OU faculty in 1992, after teaching for 14 years at Georgia Tech in Atlanta, and before that 3 years at Boston College. Ray received his BA cum laude from Yale (1967), and his MA and PhD from Stanford (1969, 1978) in political science. He served in the US Army from 1969 to 1971. At OU, he has taught Honors courses almost every semester, but also large lecture sections of the required Gen Ed American government course – Ray typically has taught about 900 students per year in 3 or 4 classes per semester. He also supervised Graduate Teaching Assistants for the Department of Political Science and administered a program in teacher training for the Department’s GTAs. At Georgia Tech, he received the University Award for Teacher of the Year and the IFC (Inter-fraternity Council) Outstanding Teacher Award.
Kevin is an author of three highly successful books published by ESPN, Disney Press and McGraw-Hill. Newsweek called Kevin’s first book, Rules of The Red Rubber Ball, “…an adult’s version of Dr. Seuss’s Oh, the Places You’ll Go! – a pocket-size guide to finding your way in life.” He has helped turn creative ideas into reality for organizations such as Nike, Starbucks, Walt Disney, Target, Proctor & Gamble, Mattel, and many others. Kevin has dedicated his life to advancing sports and play as a vehicle for social change and success. He was honored to address the United Nations as part of the UN Year of Sports for Development and Peace in 2005 and to host the Beyond Sport Summit & Awards from 2009 thru 2012 featuring Archbishop Desmond Tutu. He is an ongoing advisor and active supporter for many global social innovation organizations. In 2013, Kevin was named by SUCCESS magazine as one of 19 “SEERS – changing the world!”
Dr. Nicole Jarvis was born and raised in Norman, Oklahoma. She attended medical school at the University of Oklahoma and graduated in 1999 with Honors and as a member of the prestigious Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honors Society. She is the mother of 6 year old identical twin boys, Zachary and Ryan. Two years ago, at age 38, Dr. Jarvis was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease. She has become actively involved in the Parkinson’s community, serving on the Board of the Parkinson Foundation of Oklahoma, in addition to being an active fundraiser for Team Fox, the grassroots fundraising division of The Michael J. Fox Foundation. In January 2013, Dr. Jarvis founded her own organization, The Nicole Jarvis MD Parkinson’s Research Foundation,Inc.
Akash Patel is a political science senior at OU and a Ewing Public Service Fellow who spent this summer researching education policy in Washington, D.C. After graduating in May, he plans to take a year off to work on immigration and education policy either in Oklahoma or in D.C. as well as apply for the Fulbright Scholarship. After spending 16 years as an undocumented immigrant, Akash was inspired to advocate for other struggling immigrants through his honors research project concerning undocumented students in Oklahoma. He now works with the American Civil Liberties Union on the Immigrants Rights Project as well as with the Oklahoma City Public School District to augment English Language Learning programs. After his time off from academia, Akash plans to apply to law school to develop his passion in immigration law and policy.
Dr. Irvin L. Wagner is a faculty member at the University of Oklahoma where he is holds the distinguished titles of David Ross Boyd and Regents Professor of Music. At the University he teaches trombone as well as serves as Coordinator of Graduate Music Studies. Complimentary to his regular duties at the University he is a trombonist in the Oklahoma City Philharmonic Orchestra. He also enjoys a successful conducting career having served frequently as a guest conductor of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, The Austin (Texas) Symphony Orchestra where he conducts ballet performances and children’s concerts, and the Kansas City Symphony Orchestra. Other orchestras around the world that he has conducted include the Russian Imperial Orchestra in St., Petersburg, Russia, the Cannes Symphony Orchestra in France, and Orquesta Sinfonica de Santa Fe, Argentina.
Jake Morgan & Neal Walia
Jake Morgan and Neal Walia are seeking to show the power of shared experience and how it can bring light to the emotions and thoughts we might never express. Both pre-med juniors at the University of Oklahoma, Jake and Neal see the inherent value of empathy not only in the occupation of a physician but also in our everyday interactions. Jake is a microbiology and Italian double major who dedicates his time to teaching his peers organic chemistry and the Italian language. When he’s not living and breathing peer education, he loves to “couchsurf” around Europe while honing his Italian. Jake plans to teach medical students in the future as a physician with the hope of communicating the significance of empathy in patient-physician interactions. Neal is studying psychology and hopes to utilize the principles in this field to connect with his future patients. A health fanatic, Neal is constantly active whether its break dancing or running around with Siberian husky, Boomer.
Melanie is passionate about using economics to find creative solutions to a variety of policy problems. While studying abroad in Peru, she experienced the stark disconnect between the solutions researchers propose and the realities of policy implementation, and work on her honors thesis project inspired her to share the creative environmental conservation solutions that contradict traditional paradigms. When she’s not talking about economics, you can find her singing, tap dancing, or planning a trip around the world. Melanie is a senior economics major and plans to attend graduate school in order to prepare herself for a career in public policy analysis.
Matthias (Ulli) Nollert is an Associate Professor in the School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering. He received his BS degree from the University of Virginia and his PhD from Cornell University. His research is in the area of biomedical engineering. In particular, he is interested in how mechanical forces can affect biological processes. This has several applications in understanding how blood flow affects the biology of the human vasculature, including cell adhesion and tissue engineering. He has numerous publications and presentations. His work was most recently presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions Meeting held in Dallas, Texas in November 2013. In addition to his research, Nollert teaches classes ranging from a freshman engineering orientation course to a graduate level class on bioengineering principles.
James Simpson is the CEO and Founder of GoldFire Studios, an Oklahoma City-based HTML5 game development startup focussed on real-time, community based gameplay. He began developing games and entertainment-related websites at the age of 13, selling his first game a year later. Since then, his products have reached over one hundred million people from around the globe, including one of the world’s 100 most visited sites. James earned a degree in Entrepreneurship and Venture Management from the University of Oklahoma in 2011.
Matthew Burch is an Oklahoma native who has been working in our food system from restaurants to grocery stores, on farms, farmers’ markets, and in food distribution since 2001. His company, Urban Agrarian was founded in 2008 to act as a distributor of Oklahoma agricultural products and other locally produced foods. Headquartered in the historic Farmers Market District, Mr. Burch hopes to help revive Oklahoma City’s once flourishing produce district and bring an increased viability to local food production statewide.
Aslan Maleki is an Iranian born, Oklahoma-raised entrepreneur and a petroleum engineering junior at the University of Oklahoma. Growing up, he wasn’t always as eager to speak. While being persistent at improving his personal speaking skills, he transformed his challenges with speaking into strengths. Aslan is currently a Kairos Society Global Fellow and a member of the Leaders Investment Club.
Amyie Kao was born and raised in Oklahoma. She and her husband, Daniel, founded Mariposa Coffee, an artisan micro-roastery in Norman. Mariposa is built on the principles of giving back to community, roasting coffee with passion, and advocating for social justice. In 2013, Mariposa partnered with Water4, to put a water well in a C.O.E. coffee-growing region of Rwanda that brings 600 villagers access to clean water. Amyie received her undergraduate and graduate education from the University of Oklahoma. She was pre-med, the recipient of the Fern L. Holland Award in 2006, served with AmeriCorps in 2008, and a LEND fellow in 2011.
Philip Dow graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a B.A in Letters and has been developing software professionally since. He taught English in Austria under the Fulbright program and has worked as an independent software developer in San Francisco and the Oklahoma City area. In 2007 he was recognized as one of the 25 most influential people in the Macintosh community by MacTech magazine. He is currently the Developer in Residence at the Center for the Creation of Economic Wealth and the I.T. Entrepreneur in Residence for the Price College of Business, both at the University of Oklahoma. Philip is fascinated by computers but recognizes that technology is not a panacea. When not programming, Philip is tinkering with electronics, playing classical piano, or studying mathematics.
Jonathan Stalling is an Associate Professor of English at OU specializing in Modern-Contemporary American and East-West Poetics, Comparative Literature, and Translation Studies and is the co-founder and editor of Chinese Literature Today. Over the last 15 years, Stalling has explored the poetics of transliteration and interlanguages (his thesis at the University of Edinburgh in 2000 was entitled “Prefacing the Text: Toward a Transliterational Telos”) and this work led to the publication of Yingelishi and more recently Phonotaxis, but over the last several years this preoccupation has led to larger projects on accents in language as epistemic space and on radical new paradigms of ESL pedagogy.