Founder & Creative Director
Amar C. Bakshi is an artist whose work focuses on how to integrate technology into environments and across pronounced distance to create new forms of digital-physical public spaces that challenge and subvert existing norms. In particular, he works to connect members of diverse communities who would likely not otherwise meet in intimate environments to create their own meanings. As an artist, Amar treats the formation of institutions as, themselves, sites of creation. Amar previously worked as a reporter at The Washington Post, an editor at CNN, and as Special Assistant to the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. Amar, a Soros Fellow and Truman Scholar, has an AB from Harvard University, a MA from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, and a JD from Yale Law School.
Co-Founder and Director of Global Development
Michelle Moghtader runs global development for Shared_Studios. Previously, she was a multi-media journalist based in the Middle East. She has written for Reuters, CNN, The Huffington Post and Energy Intelligence Group and worked as a community organizer across the U.S. Michelle graduated from the University of Virginia and received her master’s degree from the Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs. She speaks Persian, French and Spanish.
Chief Executive Officer
Luke provides overall leadership and strategic direction to Shared_Studios, building on his wealth of experience leading, advising, and developing diverse organizations including NGOs, startups, large enterprises and governmental agencies. He joined Shared_Studios from The Boston Consulting Group where he advised senior leaders of global organizations on strategy, finance, operations and growth. Originally from a small town in Tasmania, Australia, he has lived and worked across North and South America, the Middle East, Europe, and Oceania. Luke holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and an MA and BA from the University of New South Wales.
Associate Director of Technology
Danara oversees the prototyping, building, and deploying of technical solutions at Shared_Studios. She is a creative technologist that has worked on a range of productions, including sound, light, and kinetic installations. Danara was born in Kazakhstan, and grew up in Turkey where she was trained as an industrial engineer, before relocating to New York to pursue her master’s at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program. Coming from one cultural melting pot to another, Danara values experiences that broaden her horizons and allow her to improve both as an artist and a technologist. When she is not playing with code, Danara is likely to be sketching or having 1:1 fetch meetings with Oscar, the Portal_Dog.
Director of Global Engagement
Jake leads Portals programming, public activations, and community engagement across Shared_Studios projects. Immediately prior to Shared_Studios, he worked with the advocacy group Protect Our Defenders on issues of sexual assault in the military. Jake has a background in production management and public policy, having worked as a speechwriter for the New York City Mayor’s Office, as a Producer for Major Lazer in Havana, Cuba, and at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, where he advised senior executives on programming and outreach for young audiences. He is a graduate of Macaulay Honors College at Brooklyn College, CUNY, and a Truman Scholar.
Global Portal Curator
Emma Saperstein is a performance artist, curator and arts administrator based in San Luis Obispo, CA. A graduate of Wheaton College and the New York Center for Art and Media Studies, her experience includes serving as studio manager to internationally recognized artist Titus Kaphar, co-curator of Inverse Performance Art Festival, involvement in the thriving alternative arts and publishing community in Chicago, specifically with the Public Media Institute, Lumpen Magazine and the Co-Prosperity Sphere. For the past two years, she has served as an editor and curator for the feminist collective HYSTERIA. She currently splits her time between Shared Studios and the Harold J. Miossi Art Gallery at Cuesta College.
Director of Global Operations
Teun directs operations, procurement and logistics for all Shared_Studios activations and manages the curator team. He comes from a production background with an international track record in film and television, as well as co-founding and managing several start-ups in the entertainment sector. He obtained his Master of Arts from the National Film & Television School and completed Inside Pictures executive training in London and Los Angeles. Teun speaks Dutch, German, French and Spanish.
Industrial and Product Design Lead
Yu-Hsing was born and raised in Taiwan. She majored in industrial design in Rhode Island school of Design and worked as an event designer and visual merchandising designer. She is interested in translating ideas into compelling narratives, products, and experience. Her works are in a multitude of categories ranging from home, retail, and exhibition. She enjoys learning new skills, working on diverse teams, and getting lost in the city.
Ben Gordon oversees partnerships, sales, and business development activities for Shared_Studios. He also leads Shared_Studios' work in smart cities, community development, and placemaking in the U.S. and abroad. Before joining Shared_Studios, Ben ran business development and strategy for Manhattan Strategy Group, a federal consulting firm that provides technical assistance and program evaluation to the U.S. Departments of Education, Labor, and Housing and Urban Development. He has a BA from the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan. Ben is from Maryland, grew up in New Delhi, and now lives in Brooklyn.
Partnerships and Business Development Manager
Sam's experience in creative brand partnerships and live event production brought her to Shared_Studios, where she leads enterprise partnerships. Her career has spanned a variety of roles in the performing arts world, from commercial and non-profit theater to the international storytelling organization The Moth. There, she produced public brand activations and private storytelling events for companies like American Express, Google, Nike, and Spotify. Sam holds an MA in Arts Administration from NYU and a BS in Business Administration from American University.
Communications and Marketing
Alistair was a 2018 Schwarzman Scholar at Tsinghua University in Beijing, where he studied a Master of Global Affairs. Prior to that, he helped the Good Lad Initiative - a non-profit organisation that delivers workshops on masculinity and consent - launch in Australia, and supported the Sydney Convicts - Australia’s first gay and inclusive Rugby Union team - in their fight against homophobia in sport. He has degrees in Philosophy and English Literature from the University of Sydney, and is a keen writer and photographer.
Strategy and Business Operations Manager
Nina drives and delivers strategic initiatives and business operations. She has previously worked as a management consultant across the public, private and not-for-profit sectors to drive social and commercial value. Nina is a Westpac Scholar and member and former curator of the Global Shapers Community - an initiative of the World Economic Forum. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Melbourne and an Executive Certificate in Social Impact Strategy at the University of Pennsylvania.
Scheduling and Administrative Coordinator
Lela Welch's diverse experience ranges from working the in Art Department in Hollywood's film industry to non-profit work and helping young adults recover from addiction and co-occurring disorders. She is a practicing multi-disciplinary artist with an emphasis in sculpture and performance with a BFA in Art + Design from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with sights on applying for her MFA in the coming year. She is currently over-seeing the implementation of several murals through Community Action Partnership in San Luis Obispo and splits her time between the local homeless shelter and Shared_Studios. With Portals, Lela works directly with the Global Portal Curator to coordinate the vast network of Portals as well other scheduling and administrative support. Her spare time is reserved for her motorcycle, travel and running.
Graeme manages contracts, payments, and human resources at Shared_Studios. He comes to the organization with deep legal and academic research experience, having worked for Harvard Kennedy School professors, expert witnesses, and an educational publishing company. He joined the team to build and promote positive means of digital engagement worldwide. A graduate of Harvard University Extension School with an ALB in Government, he closely follows international relations, employment law, and science and technology policy.
JJ is a dog mom and interdisciplinary artist from central Texas, primarily working with video, text, and 3D objects. She has studied in Strasbourg, France; Venice, Italy; and earned her BFA in art video from Syracuse University. Her poetry has been featured on blush-lit and her 2019 U.K. solo show, An Elaborate Use of Time, can be accessed on the queer archive Horse Shed. Previously, JJ worked in post production for Vice News on HBO. She currently volunteers for the public access tv, radio, and zine library 8 Ball Community, and coordinates the QPOC-centered artist residency Activation. “Self expression as a multitude of voices” is at the heart of her work.
Junior Software Developer
Siam is originally from Bangladesh and has lived in the US for more than 8 years. He recently graduated from New York City College of Technology where he majored in computer science. Siam is passionate about computer programming and wanted to become a programmer since he was 10 years old. He feels blessed because he knew what he wanted do and so didn’t have change his major like 4 times to find what he loves. Siam has worked on many projects and has successfully deployed some of them in production. Some of them you actually might be using right now.
Kathleen comes to Shared Studios via Neil Leifer Productions, where she assisted Neil Leifer in both his photography and film making practices. Kathleen holds degrees in both Film and Literary Arts; her thesis work focused on creating literary experiences for immersive audiovisual environments. She can frequently be found in the nosebleed seats at Lincoln Center, and this fall season, she plans to see Philip Glass’s Akhnaten as many times as she can physically and financially endure.
Talent, Culture, and Community Manager
Kate joins Shared_Studios with over a decade of recruitment and program management experience across New York City. Her passion for people and storytelling has led to a range of roles at nonprofit arts organizations, including building and supporting diverse teams at StoryCorps, Textile Arts Center, and most recently Parsons School of Design. Kate holds a BA in Art from Vassar College and is currently pursuing a Masters in Media Studies at The New School. She lives in Borough Park with her cat named Earl.
Director of Accounts Retrievable
Oscar was born on a farm in Wiltshire, in South West England. He studied in London, where he honed his retrieving skills at Hyde Park and Hampstead Heath. Oscar was always a natural swimmer but, after moving to Venice, CA, discovered a true passion for the ocean. He is well traveled, having spent time in the Netherlands, Italy, France, Hungary and Ireland, and he now lives in New York City. He speaks English, Dutch, and Dog.
As Chief Curator and Provocateur at Prophet, Andy earned a reputation as one of the most disruptive and effective advisors in business. He spent the past 20 years helping companies like GE, General Mills, Proctor & Gamble, The United States Olympic Committee, and the Coca Cola Company drive innovation from the inside out - enriching their people and driving marketplace growth. Andy’s true passion lies in guiding clients through the powerful evolution from inspiration
to creativity to innovation. He teaches practical skills, leadership behaviors, and specific processes for developing and implementing ideas at work.
Andy is frequently featured on CNBC as a nationally recognized innovation thought leader, and acts as visiting professor at many leading universities, including Dartmouth, University of Michigan, Duke, University of Richmond, and the Wharton School of Leadership. He is a published author and is frequently called upon to share his insights with the media. He is currently writing a forthcoming book on innovation. To follow Andy on Twitter, click here.
In 1990, Andy co-founded Play, a creativity and innovation company, that changed the way business does business. While there, he helped many leading companies find ways to inspire and equip their people to create sustainable innovation. Prophet and Play joined forces in December 2008.
Andy strongly believes in supporting community through education, nonprofit, and civic initiatives including the HYDE school, HomeAgain and ChildSavers. Andy holds a B.S. from Miami University of Ohio.
Lily Sarafan is Chief Executive Officer of Home Care Assistance. Under Lily‘s leadership for more than a decade, Home Care Assistance has grown from startup to industry champion and today employs thousands of team members across more than 150 markets. The company is consistently recognized as an employer of choice and best-in-class consumer service, and Lily as a featured expert on digital health and innovation in aging at the White House and global conferences. For her role at the helm of Home Care Assistance, Lily has been honored as Women Health Care Executives 2016 Woman of the Year and Ernst and Young‘s 2016 Entrepreneur of the Year. She holds M.S. and B.S. degrees from Stanford University.
A seasoned Broadway sound designer, Nevin is a passionate collaborator on a wide range of live events and theater productions. His recent Broadway projects include the contemporary smash DEAR EVAN HANSEN, the blockbuster HAMILTON and the beautiful BRIGHT STAR with Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, IT SHOULDA BEEN YOU at The Brooks Atkinson, and Terrence McNally’s MOTHERS AND SONS.
In addition to his theater design, Nevin serves as the Audio Consultant for Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall. He holds a bachelor's degree from Harvard College in English and American Literature and Language, and in 2011 completed a Certificate Program in Arts Management at NYU's School for Continuing Professional Studies.
Graeme Harrison has worked in the commercial AV industry for the last 3 decades leading global sales, marketing and product management teams as well as helping to grow companies by formulating and implementing strategy on executive teams. He is also heavily involved in the TED community as a mentor for the fellows, a speaker host and an advisor on audio. His background is in research Chemistry in his native England, but he now lives in Portland, OR.
Tony Tjan, Cue Ball’s co-founder and leader, is an entrepreneur and counselor at heart. He has led multiple “ground-up to scale-up” ventures and served as a strategic advisor to several CEOs. Tony’s career started at McKinsey where he founded ZEFER, one of the earliest Internet advisory and development firms. He also co-founded MiniLuxe, an ethical nail care and beauty brand seeking to change an entire industry. For 15 years, Tony was Vice Chairman of The Parthenon Group and also served as a senior strategic advisor for Thomson Reuters, helping to lead its transformation into the largest media information company.
Tony has written over 100 articles for Harvard Business Reviewand is the author of Good People and the New York Times best-seller, Heart, Smarts, Guts and Luck. He is a World Economic Forum Global Leader for Tomorrow and recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. Tony holds AB and MBA degrees from Harvard and was a Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School. He sits on the Advisory Council for the MIT Media Lab and the Board of the Tory Burch Foundation.
Kristen Erickson has spent the past seventeen years as an educator at Greenwich Academy, an independent school for girls in Greenwich, CT. She teaches high school and middle school students and served for nine years as a grade-level dean. Prior to her time at Greenwich Academy, Kristen spent twelve years in the curatorial field at the Museum of Modern Art, Smith College Museum of Art, Ashmolean Museum, and Luchsinger Gallery at Greenwich Academy. She is fluent in French and has decades of experience as a competitive rower and rowing coach.
Patrick is an experienced systems architect and technical leader that has overseen products and projects of all scales. He is Vice President of systems engineering at LiveStream.
Nick McDonell is a novelist and journalist. Born in New York City in 1984, he studied at Harvard and St. Antony’s College, Oxford. His work has been published in twenty three countries and appeared on bestseller lists around the world.
Isabel Maxwell is a Technology Pioneer of the World Economic Forum. She is a media and Internet entrepreneur, international executive, and champion of social innovation. She is known for her energetic leadership of companies and non-profit organizations and leveraging her extensive network of investors, thought-leaders, business leaders and philanthropists around the world. She is multilingual and tri-national, and a graduate of Oxford University.
Sara joined Shared_Studios after completing a Masters in Anthropology from University College of London where she conducted fieldwork in the Calais ‘Jungle.’ She is interested in points at which material culture and human rights intersect; including materialized memory, imagined realities, the architecture of displacement, and the aesthetic and media responses to humanitarian crisis and civil injustices.
Anthony “Bud” Rock served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Association of Science-Technology Centers, Incorporated (ASTC), an international organization of science centers and related institutions dedicated to furthering public engagement with science worldwide. Mr. Rock also served as Executive Publisher of Dimensions, the leading professional publication of the science center field. Prior to his tenure at ASTC, Mr. Rock held the position of Vice President for Global Engagement at Arizona State University (ASU), where he was responsible for expanding global awareness among students and developing new and creative international programs of research and scholarship.
Before joining ASU, Mr. Rock had a three-decade career in U.S. government service, mostly within the U.S. Department of State. His diplomatic service included a five-year appointment as acting Assistant Secretary and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for oceans, environment, science, technology, and health. During this period, Mr. Rock also served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Science, overseeing the negotiation and implementation of more than 50 bilateral cooperative science and technology agreements throughout the world. He served abroad as Minister for Environment, Science, Technology, Health, and Non-Proliferation Affairs in the United States Embassy in Paris, France and in the United States Mission to the European Union in Brussels, Belgium.
Kyriakos is a polymath whose work and research focuses on communicating social impact and the value of shared recourses in doing so. Kyriakos’ career has been driven by creating positive social impact through real-world research and enabling people and organisations to participate in shared value ecosystems.
Kyriakos is the co-founder and CEO of Just Gold, Australia’s first full service digital agency that is an accredited social enterprise. The agency is founded on the premise that everyone should have access to opportunity to fully participate in society and economy regardless of age, gender, ability, background, sexuality or location.
Kyriakos previously lead the communications and events team (multicultural portfolio) for the Victorian Department of Premier and has a long-standing international broadcasting career. In Australia he is best known for his award winning work with the multicultural public broadcaster SBS.
He is a PhD researcher at the Centre for Social Impact, an Australian lawyer (non-practising) and holds a Juris Doctor and an Executive MBA from RMIT, a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practise from the Australian National University, a BA in International Studies from the University of Adelaide and multiple awards and scholarships.
Sophia is a social impact specialist, a media expert, a neurodiversity advocate and a mother of two that believes in human connection. Sophia is an avid storyteller; she is currently researching Digital Storytelling for Social Impact and its application to commercial projects and shared value ecosystems.
Sophia is the co-founder and Director of Emerging Media and Social Impact at Just Gold Digital Agency, Australia’s first full service digital agency that is an accredited social enterprise. The agency is founded on the premise that everyone should have access to opportunity to fully participate in society and economy regardless of age, gender, ability, background, sexuality or location. She was previously a household name in Greece, where she was the breakfast host of the top rating station Melodia FM 99.2 for 11 years. She has led big scale projects like The Athens WOMAD and held management positions at Warner Music Greece where she managed local repertoire and international exploitation.
Sophia holds an MA in Mass Communications from the University of Leicester and a Bachelor of Communications and Mass Media from the University of Athens. She is currently completing her MA of Social Impact at the Australian Graduate School of Entrepreneurship. She plans to use her research to change the world, story by story.