Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Innovation Awards

We are pleased to announce the new annual Brain Fitness Innovation Awards, designed to foster innovation and best practice sharing by celebrating outstanding pioneers who apply neuroplasticity-based research and tools in the “real world”. The awards will recognize organizations that are devising and implementing results-oriented and scalable initiatives that demonstrate their commitment to the brain fitness of their clients, members, patients, students or employees, and showcase innovative uses of non-invasive tools to improve cognitive and emotional functions and “real-world” outcomes.

Brain Fitness Innovation Awards


1 Grand Prize Winner will receive: $2,500 check, consulting session with SharpBrains staff, 2 tickets for each SharpBrains Summits in 2011; 10 signed copies of The SharpBrains Guide to Brain Fitness

2 Silver Prize Winners will each receive: $1,000 check, consulting session with SharpBrains staff, 2 tickets for each SharpBrains Summits in 2011, 10 signed copies of The SharpBrains Guide to Brain Fitness

7 Finalists will each receive: $250 check, 1 ticket for each SharpBrains Summits in 2011, 10 signed copies of The SharpBrains Guide to Brain Fitness

How to Apply

Organizations can use this Entry Form to submit entries (opens a Word document).

The 2010 Brain Fitness Innovation Awards will recognize unique initiatives that not only bring measurable benefits to end users but also are closely connected to furthering the objectives of the organization in which they operate, via (for example) increased customer/ patient satisfaction, employee engagement, branding benefits, professional development gains, and others. All eligible submissions will be evaluated based on the following criteria: Measurable Benefits for end users, Measurable Benefits for organization, Creativity and Innovation of approach, Scalability of initiative, Value of Lessons Learned.

Main Dates

By April 15th: All entries collected
By April 30th: SharpBrains staff selects 10 finalists
By May 15th: judges score finalists and select 1 Grand Prize Winner and 2 Silver Prize Winners
May 24th: Winners will be announced on Monday, May 24th, 2010

Confirmed Judges:

shiv-babaBaba Shiv, Professor at Stanford Business School, conducts research on consumer decision making and decision neuroscience, with specific emphasis on the neurological underpinnings of emotion and motivation in decision making. His recent work examines the potential for nonconscious placebo effects related to pricing. He is currently the editor of the Journal of Consumer Research and sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Consumer Psychology and the Journal of Marketing Research.

Bill0828Bill Tucker, Managing Director at Education Sector, is a social entrepreneur who has founded and led both nonprofit organizations and for-profit companies. He is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of Education Sector, and also leads policy work focused on technology and innovation. His involvement in education dates to early in his career, when he managed a middle/high school student volunteer and service learning program, working with 22 schools and over 75 nonprofit organizations, and served as a community organizer for an adult literacy program. He is a graduate of Duke University and has both an MBA and a Master’s of Education from Stanford University.

murphyBrian Murphy, President of De Anza College, has led De Anza College since 2004 with a key focus on the preparation of students to be active, involved citizens committed to transforming their communities. Previously, President Murphy served for 12 years as executive director of the San Francisco Urban Institute at San Francisco State University, and was chief consultant to the California State Legislature’s reviews of the Master Plan for Higher Education and the community college reform process in the late 1980s. He has taught political theory and American government at the University of California, Santa Cruz, Santa Clara University and San Francisco State University.

jenningsCharles Jennings, Director of the McGovern Institute Neurotechnology Program, MIT, became an editor with the scientific journal Nature following postdoctoral studies in developmental biology at Harvard and MIT. He was the founding editor of Nature Neuroscience, widely considered a leading journal in its field. More recently, he was the first executive director of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, and he continues to serve as an advisor to the Connecticut Stem Cell Research Program.

house_for-webChuck House, Executive Director of Stanford Media X, leads Stanford University’s Industry Affiliate research program on media and technology, and is a senior research scholar in the Human Sciences and Technology Advanced Research division at Stanford. Previously, he was the director of Societal Impact of Technology for Intel Corporation, and the first Director of Intel’s Virtual Research Collaboratory. He recently co-authored The HP Phenomenon: Innovation and Business Transformation (Stanford University Press, October 2009).

colinmilnerColin Milner, Founder and CEO of the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA), is one of the world’s visionaries on the health and well-being of the older adult. Milner is a member of the Global Agenda Councils initiative run by the World Economic Forum, the active-aging spokesperson for the Canadian Association of Fitness Professionals, and the resident industry expert on aging for the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association. An award-winning writer, Milner has authored more than 200 articles on aging-related issues.

elizabeth_edgerly-head-shot-1Elizabeth Edgerly, National Spokesperson for Alzheimer’s Association “Maintain Your Brain”, is the Chief Program Officer for the Alzheimer’s Association and national spokesperson for the Association’s Maintain Your Brain program. She oversees the many programs of the Association for patients, families and health care professionals. In addition, she staffs the Medical Scientific Advisory Council of the Alzheimer’s Association – Northern California. She received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology at the State University of New York and specialized in geropsychology and neuropsychology. Dr. Edgerly joined the Alzheimer’s Association after completing a fellowship in clinical geropsychology at the Palo Alto VA Hospital.

gloria_cavanaughGloria Cavanaugh, Former President of the American Society on Aging, retired in 2006 as President and CEO after leading the organization for 31 years and transforming it from being a regional association to a national one with over 6,000 members. Ms. Cavanaugh is a founding member and former Board Chair of the National Alliance for Caregiving, and served as a Judge for the AARP Best Employers for Workers Over 50 Program. In addition to managing her San Francisco-based consulting practice, Cavanaugh currently serves on the boards of several organizations and coalitions.

150px-Kenneth_Kosik-150x150Kenneth Kosik, Co-Director of UC-Santa Barbara Neuroscience Research Institute, holds an M.D. degree from the Medical College of Pennsylvania. From 1980 until 2005 he held various appointments at the Harvard Medical School where he became Professor of Neurology and Neuroscience. In the fall of 2004 he assumed the co-directorship of the Neuroscience Research Institute and the Harriman Chair at the University of California Santa Barbara. He has received multiple awards, including a Whitaker Health Sciences Award from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Derek Denny-Brown Neurological Scholar Award from the American Neurological Association, the Zenith Award from the Alzheimer’s Association, and a NASA Group Achievement Award to the Neurolab Science Team.

MargaretMorrisMargaret Morris, Senior Researcher at Intel’s Digital Health Group, studies the ways that emerging technologies can enhance mental and physical wellbeing. She conducts ethnographic research to identify needs and works with engineers to develop and evaluate exploratory prototypes. Prior to joining Intel in 2002, she studied technology adoption in Sapient’s Experience Modelling group. Margie completed her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology with a minor in Behavioural Neuroscience at the University of New Mexico, her clinical internship at the San Francisco VA Medical Centre, and her postdoctoral fellowship at Stanford University. She has a B.A. in English from Haverford College.

339fc3fNigel Smith, AARP Strategy and Planning Director, is responsible for developing decentralized innovation models for AARP and for consulting with business units in the execution of innovation processes. Prior to AARP, Nigel was the Director or Product Innovation for Visa USA. Other professional experiences have been with McKinsey & Company, Goldman Sachs Group, and KPMG. Nigel holds a Masters in Business Administration degree from Stanford University and a Bachelors in Business Administration degree from Howard University.

picture-44Rod Falcon, Director of Health Horizons Program at the Institute For The Future, directs research across a range of health and health care issues with an emphasis on the global health economy: evolving consumer health markets, do-it-yourself health care, the shifting of care outside clinical settings, and the growing number of people turning to technology to become better-than-well. Rod has a B.A. in American history and ethnic studies and an M.P.P. from the University of California, Berkeley. Outside work, Rod keeps busy learning the myriad stories of his own large extended family.

DrMacknikStephen Macknik, Lab Director at Barrow Neurological Institute, has seen his research and scientific outreach activities featured in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal,The Chicago Tribune, The Boston Globe, NPR, and Der Spiegel, among hundreds of media stories. He is board member of Scientific American, where he has published several feature articles and for which he published a free monthly online column on the neuroscience of illusions.

susanhoffman.thumbnailSusan Hoffman, Director of OLLI @ Berkeley, leads the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute within the Vice Provost’s Office for Teaching and Learning at UC Berkeley. For the past fifteen years she has worked at UC and CSU campuses launching new interdisciplinary and international programs. Before then, she served as the Executive Director of the California Confederation of the Arts, representing California artists, art educators and arts organizations in Sacramento and Washington for a decade. Her creative work includes being a writer and filmmaker. Her faculty appointments have been in creative writing, theatre and political philosophy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a formal nomination process?
No. Any organization can submit an entry, and/ or encourage others to do so.

Can a vendor and a client organization submit a joint entry? if not, who submits the entry, and who wins the Award?
The Awards are designed to directly recognize Users, not Vendors. The primary organization to submit an entry and receive the Award is the one using latest tools and programs (technology-based on not) to take care of the brain fitness of their own clients/ patients/ employees. Now, the tools and programs used will be publicly recognized as part of Award Winner’s entry and case study.

Your evaluation criteria include “Value of Lessons Learned” (20%). What you mean by ‘lessons learned”?
Pioneers are willing to learn by doing and to share insights from their experience with other organizations which may be considering similar initiatives. For example, what were some difficulties in implementing and growing the program? what was end user response? how were results measured? what tool/s were selected and why?

Will the information contained in the submitted Entries be shared? They may be great case studies
Full 3 Winning Entries will be shared publicly, while full Finalist Entries will only be shared with Summit participants.

Overview of Summit Agenda

Monday January 18th, 2010:

8-8.15. My Continued Love Affair with the Brain. Marian
Diamond, UC-Berkeley

8.15-9.15am. Cognition & Neuroplasticity: The New Health & Wellness

  • Alvaro Fernandez, SharpBrains
  • Tom Warden, Allstate
  • David Whitehouse, OptumHealth Behavioral Solutions
  • William Reichman, Baycrest

9.30-11am. Tools for Safer Driving: The Opportunity with Teenagers
and Adults

  • Steven Aldrich, Posit Science
  • Shlomo Breznitz, CogniFit
  • Jerri Edwards, University of South Florida
  • Peter Christianson, Young Drivers of Canada

Noon-1.30pm. Baby Boomers and Beyond: Maintaining Cognitive Vitality

  • Kunal Sarkar, Lumos Labs
  • Elizabeth Zelinski, USC Davis School of Gerontology
  • Dan Michel, Dakim
  • Michael Cole, Vivity Labs

1.45-3.15pm. Next Generation Cognitive & Emotional Health Assessments

  • Evian Gordon, Brain Resource
  • Misha Pavel, OHSU
  • Albert “Skip” Rizzo, USC

3.30-4pm. The Future of Cognitive Health Tech - Intel's Perspective

  • Margaret Morris, Senior Researcher
  • Muki Hansteen-Izora, Strategist

Tuesday January 19th, 2010:

8-8.15am. Innovation, People and Technology.Chuck House, Stanford Media X

815-9.15am. Neurocognition & Medicine: Implications for Research,
Diagnosis, and Treatment

  • Keith Wesnes, United BioSource Corporation
  • Adam Gazzaley, UCSF
  • Michel Noir, SBT / HappyNeuron
  • Laurence Hirshberg, NeuroDevelopment Center

9.30-11am. How Can Neuroscience Inform and Refine Mental Health Care

  • Michael Merzenich, UCSF
  • Torkel Klingberg, Karolinska Institute
  • Joshua Steinerman, Albert Einstein – Montefiore Medical Center
  • Yaakov Stern, Columbia University

Noon-1.30pm. Integrating Cognition with Home Health and Medical
Home Models

  • Kenneth Kosik, UC Santa Barbara
  • Jonas Jendi, Cogmed
  • Holly Jimison, Oregon Health & Science University
  • Jesse Wright, University of Louisville

1.45-3.15pm. What's Next: Entrepreneurial And Funding Perpectives

  • Tim Chang, Norwest Venture Partners
  • Richard Levinson, Attention Control Systems
  • Lisa Schoonerman, VibrantBrains
  • Veronika Litinski, MaRS Venture Group

3.30-4pm. Future Standards and Channels for Neuroplasticity-based

  • Stephen Macknik, Barrow Neurological Institute
  • Charles Jennings, MIT
  • P Murali Doraiswamy, Duke University

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010:

Expo Day

  • 9am. Baycrest
  • 10am. CogniFit
  • 11am. Posit Science
  • Noon. SBT/ HappyNeuron
  • 1pm. SharpBrains

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