Instructors

Karen Allen – Certified Biomimicry Professional, Ecologist, Educator
Karen is a Certified Biomimicry Professional, biologist, and educator who is passionate about sharing the secrets of the natural world to inform sustainable innovations. Her interdisciplinary science background and love of natural history help Karen serve as a Biologist at the Design Table, translating nature’s strategies for architects, engineers, and designers. She is an integral part of Biomimicry 3.8′s teaching team, leading innovators in understanding the practice of biomimicry. She is currently co-developing and teaching the 8-month Biomimicry Specialist Program, the Costa Rica Biomimicry & Design course and other workshops. She has been practicing biomimicry in a variety of projects since 2000.

 

Zeynep Arhon – Founder, TRENDDESK
Zeynep is a Certified Biomimicry Professional and future trends consultant based in Istanbul. She drives the innovation process in the corporate world by leveraging a unique combination of nature and future. Inspiring management teams with nature’s strategies and future trends, creating new product ideas and communication platforms, revisiting key business concepts such as cooperation and simplicity are at the core of her work. The end result is a future-ready company.

 

Dayna Baumeister – Keystone & Co-Founder, Biomimicry 3.8
With a background in biology, a devotion to applied natural history, and a passion for sharing the wonders of nature with others, Dayna has worked in the field of Biomimicry since 1998 as an educator, researcher, and design consultant. As co-founder and keystone for Biomimicry 3.8, Dayna serves as a visionary leader for the organization.

 

Jamie Dwyer – Biologist & Design Strategist, Biomimicry 3.8
Biomimicry is the perfect setting to bring together Jamie’s background in the fields of biology and architectural design. Her work for Biomimicry 3.8 is currently focused on facilitating biomimicry in the built environment. Jamie seeks to transform the design framework by empowering others with the tools of biomimicry. Jamie is also a graduate of the Biomimicry Professional Certification Program.

 

Sara El-Sayed – Certified Biomimicry Professional, 2013, Outdoor Environmental Educator and Biologist
Co-founder of Dayma a company dedicated to journeys around Egypt’s natural areas that connect youth to self, community and biomimicry. She is also co-founder of an NGO called Nawaya dedicated to creating sustainable agriculture in the area of Abusir, Egypt. Passionate, pragmatic, curious, and has a great joy for life. A biologist and anthropologist, Sara is juggling with her many passions. Her interests include finding innovative ways of communicating with people, which has also been expressed in her theatre work through various theatre productions. Her jobs have included being an eco-guide in several of Egypt’s National Parks and working on educational programs and curricula for environmental education for both youth and adults. She dreams of co-creating an Egypt that is flourishing and expanding in a sustainable way based on nature’s inspiration.

 

Carl Hastrich – Assistant Professor, Ontario College of Art and Design, Biomimicry Speakers Bureau
Having been exposed to the unsustainable practices going on in Toy Design and the toxic factory manufacturing environments as an industrial designer in China, Carl was interested in looking for new avenues to address these issues. He now teaches at Ontario College of Art and Design (OCAD) and works with students to develop new design methodologies that incorporate biomimicry into their design process.

 

Claire Janisch – Founder, biomimicrySA; Co-Creator, Genius Lab
Claire, a chemical engineer by training, is a sustainability & innovation consultant, environmental educator and biomimicry professional. She is among the fifteen graduates of the first cohort of the Biomimicry Professional Certification Program and currently heads up the biomimicrySA (South Africa). She also co-created the Genius Lab in South Africa, an experiential learning organization inspiring innovation and future thinking for organizations and individuals.

Erin Leitch – Director of Certification & Design Strategist, Biomimicry 3.8
Coming from a background in architecture and sustainable building advisory, Erin now oversees the development and delivery of the world’s most innovative and comprehensive biomimicry educational program with Biomimicry 3.8. Erin graduated with the inaugural cohort of the Biomimicry Professional Certification Program in March 2010.

 

Tim McGee – Biologist & Biomimicry Strategist, Biomimicry 3.8
Tim is a trained interdisciplinary biologist with an interest in applying biological know-how to industrial systems. Tim is a regular contributor to Treehugger the leading media outlet dedicated to driving sustainability mainstream. Tim’s wealth of experience in biological research, industry, and design enables him to act as a Biologist at the Design Table with Biomimicry 3.8, where he helps clients explore how the natural world can help their company innovate and create a sustainable future.

Taryn Mead – Biologist at the Design Table, Biomimicry 3.8
Taryn’s training in ecology and the socio-industrial aspects of environmental issues provides a systems-based platform for discussion of biomimetic principles and methodologies. As a Biologist at the Design Table, she specializes in nature’s functions at the ecosystem level. With a bird’s eye view on planning, architectural and production challenges, she provides insights into ecological principles that can be used to enhance the way designs fit into the landscape of a place. She guides clients through a design process that asks the local organisms how to flourish in the regional habitat conditions and incorporate ecosystem nutrient cycling into landscape scale designs. Her assignments include consulting with corporate clients, researching biological strategies, facilitating workshops with design professionals and biologists and creating tools to assist in the design process.

 

Theresa Millard – Certified Biomimicry Professional, Founder, Biomimicry Iberia
Empowered by the vision of life’s genius, Theresa’s passion is finding opportunity inside of problems, particularly those manifested by the ‘Industrial Age’. Having spent 20+ years in durable goods manufacturing, she has seen firsthand the problems and challenges that we create. Born in the UK, trained as an artist, her career had been in the USA. Working for Kohler Company, in production, technical development, product design, creativity and business practice she recognized that as a purveyor of consumption she contributed to a way of living that is unsustainable. Rather than step away from the corporate world she moved to give some breathing space and perspective to see the world differently. Today, having turned her life upside-down; she lives in Granada, Spain with her family. She optimistically challenges industry on their sustainability journeys and is bringing Biomimicry to the Iberian Peninsula with the dream that together we find better answers.

Doug Paige – The Cleveland Institute of Art, Ohio, USA
Doug Paige has been teaching Industrial Design at The Cleveland Institute of Art since 1998, with a focus on problem solving methodology. Doug has been incorporating sustainability into the curriculum since 2000. Projects have included collaborations with local organizations to bring together students and the community for special projects including Cleveland Public Art urban bike racks, APOC furniture from deconstructed houses, and Cuyahoga County Planning Commission to explore biomimicry as a methodology for studying the Cuyahoga River bulkheads and fish health.

Doug spent 17 years with Thomson Consumer Electronics and consulting firms in California and Ohio, designing products from computer equipment and hi-tech luggage to day cruise ships. Doug has been a contributing author for three publications: Managing as DesigningProcess Materials and Measurements – design resource book, and Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative “Watercraft.” Passions include kayaking, design, and the art of fermentation beverages.

Sherry Ritter – Research & Education Specialist, Biomimicry 3.8
Sherry has worked much of her career as a wildlife ecologist for state wildlife agencies, and as a research/management coordinator for the U.S. Forest Service. She’s authored numerous magazine articles and a natural history book. While working with Biomimicry 3.8, she has maintained a database of biomimicry case studies, worked as content editor of AskNature.org, and served as a BaDT  for a variety of clients including Colgate-Palmolive, Coca-Cola, Natura, HOK, Shell, and Lucchesi Galati. She has helped teach Biomimicry and Design workshops in Costa Rica and Veracruz, MX. Biomimicry brings together her passion and appreciation for nature, her excitement about science, her love for sharing her passions with others, and her goal of a more sustainable way for us to fit in on this planet.

Juan Rovalo – Certified Biomimicry Professional, Principal, TOA
Biologist and Certified Biomimicry Professional, Juan Rovalo, founded Taller de Operaciones Ambientales (TOA) in 2005, a multi-disciplinary collaborative offering environmental design and innovation services. Juan has been featured in Fast Company (Biomimicry Challenge: TOA Uses Fungi to Reimagine Sustainable Neighborhoods) applying biomimicry to the concept of ecodistricts for city planning. He designed a biomimicry exhibit for the Asteroide B612 Diseno regenerativo y balances ambientales exhibit at the Modern Art Museum in Mexico City experienced by over 50,000 visitors. Juan also collaborates with a forward-thinking team of educators at Universidad del Medio Ambiente (UMA) in the design of their forthcoming Masters of Sustainability curriculum.

Lisa Schmidtke – Associate, Certified Biomimicry Professional
Lisa L. Schmidtke, CID, ASID, LEED AP, grew up in the Ohio Valley and earned her B.A. at Kent State University, where she studied Architecture and Interior Design. Lisa’s professional career has been focused on the design of commercial buildings, and she has over 24 years of experience in the design of healthcare, corporate, educational, and government facilities. She is also trained as a Strategic Planner, Project Manager, and is a LEED Accredited Professional.

Lisa is currently an Associate with Clark Nexsen Architecture and Engineering in their Norfolk, Virginia headquarters, and has worked as a senior planner and programmer for projects all over the world. Her current focus revolves around the exciting new science of biomimicry, and she hopes to equip Clark Nexsen with the knowledge and tools to fulfill a big dream…to design and build a building that has no negative impact on the environment!

Megan Schuknecht – Certified Biomimicry Professional; Director of University Education, Biomimicry 3.8
Megan works with faculty and administrators to incorporate biomimicry tools and concepts into university and college classrooms, curricula, and degree programs. Trained as a biologist and an educator, she fosters interdisciplinary approaches to design with an emphasis on solutions to address social and environmental challenges. She also coordinates the Biomimicry 3.8 Institute’s annual global Student Design Challenge and annual Biomimicry Education Summit.
Rose Tocke – Owner, Mover-Shaker at Full Circle Collaborative
Rose is most inspired by three things: the resilience of the human spirit, the elegance of nature, and the community building capacity of food. These are interconnected elements of the same story, and weaving them together in a way that addresses social and environmental issues is her passion. As a former Biologist at the Design Table with Biomimicry 3.8 and in her current role at Full Circle Collaborative, Rose integrates the concepts and methodologies of ecological literacy, biomimicry, and permaculture for a systems-thinking approach to problem solving. She lectures, teaches, and consults with communities and corporate clients alike to help them arrive at time tested, nature approved strategies for doing well by doing good. She also operates an edible landscaping business in Gunnison, Colorado, where she enjoys the challenge of designing forest gardens that can survive and thrive in a challenging high-altitude climate. Rose’s education and training are based in the sciences and span molecular biology to landscape ecology.

 

Saskia van den Muijsenberg – biomimicryNL
Saskia is the co-founder of biomimicryNL with a background in marketing, change management and strategic innovation. She is a Biomimicry Professional Candidate and currently involved in developing biomimicry curricula and innovation consultancy, acting as a catalyst for innovation, enabling others to explore and develop new ideas then helping to shape and develop real business opportunities.

Through biomimicryNL, Saskia proactively spreads the biomimicry meme across different disciplines and levels (schools, universities, professionals) through both education & practice.