Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

40+ Speakers at the forefront of Brain, Health and Innovation


adam gazzaley

Dr. Adam Gazzaley, Director of the Neuroscience Imaging Center at the University of California, San Francisco

Dr. Gaz­za­ley is a fac­ul­ty mem­ber in the Neu­rol­o­gy, Phys­i­ol­o­gy and Psy­chi­a­try depart­ments, and prin­ci­pal inves­ti­ga­tor of a cog­ni­tive neu­ro­science lab­o­ra­to­ry that con­ducts research on the neur­al mech­a­nisms of atten­tion and mem­o­ry. A major focus of his research has been to expand our under­stand­ing of the alter­ations in the aging brain that lead to cog­ni­tive decline. His most recent stud­ies explore how we can pre­serve and improve atten­tion and mem­o­ry as we get old­er. He has received many awards and hon­ors for his research, includ­ing the 1997 Cor­ti­cal Schol­ar Award, Pfizer/AFAR Inno­va­tions in Aging Award and the Elli­son Foun­da­tion New Schol­ar Award in Aging.


Aki Nikolaidis, NSF Fellow at the University of Illinois Champaign Urbana

Aki’s research uses machine learn­ing tech­niques to inves­ti­gate how neu­ro­plas­tic­ity, as mea­sured in humans with MRI, relates to learn­ing and cog­ni­tive enhance­ment, and how neu­ro­plas­tic­i­ty can be guid­ed through the use of brain stim­u­la­tion, train­ing strat­e­gy, and exer­cise to max­i­mize those gains. Before com­ing to Illi­nois, he was a Research Assis­tant at Nation­al Tai­wan Uni­ver­sity Hos­pi­tal and at the Uni­ver­sity of Bern. He received his BA in Psy­chol­o­gy at Yale. His recent­ly pub­lished papers exam­ine the rela­tion­ship between plas­tic­i­ty in the pari­etal cor­tex and train­ing-induced gains in untrained tasks. Learn more.

Alex Doman

Alex Doman, Co-founder of Sleep Genius

Alex Doman is the Co-founder of Sleep Genius, CEO of Advanced Brain Tech­nolo­gies and best­selling co-author of Heal­ing at the Speed of Sound. The third gen­er­a­tion in a fam­i­ly of pio­neers in the field of child and human brain devel­op­ment, Alex has focused his career on sound, music, and tech­nol­o­gy and their capac­i­ty to improve brain health and per­for­mance. He has been inter­viewed for; NBC, CBS, ABC, MSNBC, Today, NPR Mar­ket­place, Wall Street Jour­nal, among oth­ers. He lec­tures inter­na­tion­al­ly and has trained thou­sands of allied health, edu­ca­tion and music pro­fes­sion­als in brain based appli­ca­tions of sound and music. Learn more.

Alvaro Fernandez

Alvaro Fernandez, CEO of SharpBrains

Alvaro Fer­nan­dez, named a Young Glob­al Leader by the World Eco­nom­ic Forum, co-found­ed and runs Sharp­Brains, an inde­pen­dent mar­ket research firm track­ing appli­ca­tions of brain sci­ence. He has been quot­ed by The New York Times, The Wall Street Jour­nal, and CNN, among oth­ers. Mr. Fer­nan­dez is the co-author of “The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness: How to Opti­mize Brain Health and Per­for­mance at Any Age” (2013), and the edi­tor-in-chief of the mar­ket report “The Dig­i­tal Brain Health Mar­ket 2012–2020: Web-based, mobile and bio­met­rics-based tech­nol­o­gy to assess, mon­i­tor and enhance cog­ni­tion and brain func­tion­ing.” Alvaro has an MBA and MA in Edu­ca­tion from Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty, and a BA in Eco­nom­ics from Uni­ver­si­dad de Deusto.

Ariel Garten, CEO and co-founder of InteraXon

Ariel Garten is the CEO and co-founder of Inter­aXon, which cre­ates thought con­trolled com­put­ing prod­ucts and appli­ca­tions. Ariel has also researched at the Krem­bil Neu­ro­science Insti­tute study­ing hip­pocam­pal neu­ro­ge­n­e­sis, dis­played work at the Art Gallery of Ontario, been head design­er at a fash­ion label, and opened Toron­to Fash­ion Week. Referred to as the “Brain Guru” by Now Mag­a­zine, CBC Radio and the Toron­to Star, Ariel has also run a suc­cess­ful real estate busi­ness, spent time as the design­er and own­er of a Cana­dian fash­ion bou­tique, and is a prac­tic­ing psychotherapist.

Barbara Van Amburg, Chief Nursing Officer at Kaiser Permanente Redwood City

Bar­bara Van Amburg has held the posi­tion of Chief Nurs­ing Offi­cer at the Kaiser Per­ma­nente Red­wood City cam­pus since 2006. Pri­or to this, she worked for 17 years at Com­mu­ni­ty Hos­pi­tal of Los Gatos, an affil­i­ate of Tenet Health, where she held the posi­tion of CNO. Bar­bara is a Board Cer­ti­fied Nurse Exec­u­tive and trained Heart­Math© instruc­tor. She is a recip­i­ent of the YWCA “Trib­ute to Women in Indus­try Award” (2004), and a cur­rent mem­ber of the Asso­ci­a­tion of Cal­i­for­nia Nurse Lead­ers (ACNL) and the Amer­i­can Asso­ci­a­tion of Nurse Exec­u­tives (AONE). In addi­tion, she has sat on the San Jose State Uni­ver­si­ty Nurs­ing Advi­so­ry Board. Ms. Van Amburg earned her Mas­ters of Sci­ence in Nurs­ing at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia at San Francisco.


Bill Prenovitz, Global Product and Service Management at Philips Healthcare’s Aging-in-Place Program

Bill Pren­ovitz recent­ly helped bring Philips Brain Fit­ness to the aging-in-place mar­ket­place. He has more than 20 years of expe­ri­ence devel­op­ing inno­v­a­tive, tech­nol­o­gy-based ser­vices, with the last ten years devel­op­ing these ser­vices for seniors. He grad­u­at­ed from SUNY Bing­ham­ton with a degree in Film­mak­ing, and with an MBA from Bent­ley Uni­ver­si­ty he worked in strate­gic mar­ket­ing and prod­uct devel­op­ment in the elec­tron­ic infor­ma­tion sec­tor. He has since played a lead­er­ship role in many of the prod­uct-enabled ser­vice inno­va­tions from Philips Life­line, includ­ing the Tem­po PERS Watch, the Cord­less Phone Com­mu­ni­ca­tor, and the soon to be launched, GoSafe, Lifeline’s Mobile PERS service.


Dr. Bill Reichman, President of Baycrest

Dr. Reich­man is Pres­i­dent and Chief Exec­u­tive Offi­cer of Bay­crest, one of the world’s pre­mier aca­d­e­m­ic health sci­ences cen­tres focused on aging and brain func­tion. Dr. Reich­man, an inter­na­tion­al­ly-known expert in geri­atric men­tal health and demen­tia is also Pro­fes­sor of Psy­chi­a­try on the Fac­ul­ty of Med­i­cine at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to. He is a not­ed author­i­ty on the deliv­ery of men­tal health and demen­tia ser­vices in nurs­ing home set­tings. Dr. Reich­man is a for­mer Pres­i­dent of the Amer­i­can Asso­ci­a­tion for Geri­atric Psy­chi­a­try and the Geri­atric Men­tal Health Foundation.

Robert Bilder

Dr. Bob Bilder, Direc­tor of the Ten­nen­baum Cen­ter for the Biol­ogy of Creativity

Dr. Bob Bilder is the Direc­tor of the Ten­nen­baum Cen­ter for the Biol­ogy of Cre­ativ­ity in the Jane & Ter­ry Semel Insti­tute for Neu­ro­science and Human Behav­ior, and the Michael E. Ten­nen­baum Fam­ily Pro­fes­sor of Psy­chi­a­try & Biobe­hav­ioral Sci­ences and Chief of Med­ical Psy­chol­ogy — Neu­ropsy­chol­ogy at David Gef­fen School of Med­i­cine. He has received many awards for his research con­tri­bu­tions, served on diverse fed­eral and inter­na­tional advi­sory boards, pro­vided edi­to­r­ial ser­vice to many schol­arly jour­nals, and received mul­ti­ple grants from the NIH, pri­vate foun­da­tions, and indus­try. Learn more.

Dr. Catherine Madison, Director of the Ray Dolby Brain Health Center at CPMC

Dr. Cather­ine Madi­son,  Direc­tor of the new Ray Dol­by Brain Health Cen­ter at Cal­i­for­nia Pacif­ic Med­ical Cen­ter, com­plet­ed her med­ical school train­ing at St. Louis Uni­ver­si­ty in Mis­souri, and her neu­rol­o­gy res­i­den­cy at George Wash­ing­ton Uni­ver­si­ty Med­ical Cen­ter in Wash­ing­ton D.C. She is board-cer­ti­fied in Neu­rol­o­gy, and has been prac­tic­ing at Cal­i­for­nia Pacif­ic Med­ical Cen­ter since 2001. A native of the Bay Area, Dr. Madi­son received her under­grad­u­ate at UC Berke­ley. After spend­ing eight years in the US Air Force, she returned to the Bay Area to help care for her moth­er who had become increas­ing­ly dis­abled with dementia.


Dr. Corinna E. Lathan, Founder and CEO of AnthroTronix

Dr. Corin­na Lath­an leads Anthro­Tron­ix, a bio­med­ical engi­neer­ing prod­uct devel­op­ment com­pa­ny and pio­neer in mobile plat­form tech­nol­o­gy. Their DANA prod­uct is a mobile med­ical app intend­ed to col­lect and dis­play per­for­mance infor­ma­tion for use in the eval­u­a­tion of patient brain func­tion. Dr. Lath­an has been rec­og­nized as one of Fast Company’s “Most Cre­ative Peo­ple in Busi­ness,” and as a Tech­nol­o­gy Pio­neer and Young Glob­al Leader by the World Eco­nom­ic Forum, where she cur­rent­ly serves as Chair of the Glob­al Agen­da Coun­cil for AI and Robot­ics. She is active­ly involved in edu­ca­tion­al out­reach pro­grams that empow­er women and minori­ties in sci­ence and tech­nol­o­gy. Dr. Lath­an is also on the Board of Engi­neer­ing World Health.

Dr. Daphne Bavelier, Head of the Brain & Learning Lab at the University of Geneva & U. of Rochester

Dr. Bave­lier’s work at Uni­ver­si­ty of Gene­va, Switzer­land, and U. of Rochester NY, USA, focus­es on brain plas­tic­i­ty and exam­ines the role of expe­ri­ence in shap­ing the func­tion­al orga­ni­za­tion of the human brain as well as in push­ing the bound­aries of behav­ior. She stud­ies pop­u­la­tions with altered expe­ri­ence such as deaf indi­vid­u­als, video game play­ers or indi­vid­u­als using a visu­al rather than a spo­ken lan­guage (e.g. users of Amer­i­can Sign Lan­guage), and asks basic ques­tions such as: Do deaf indi­vid­u­als see bet­ter? What is the impact of video gam­ing on vision and cog­ni­tion? How does the use of a visu­al, rather than spo­ken lan­guage, change the cere­bral orga­ni­za­tion for language?

Dr. Dharma Singh Khalsa, Pres­i­dent of the Alzheimer’s Research and Pre­ven­tion Foundation

Dhar­ma Singh Khal­sa, M.D. is the Pres­i­dent and Med­ical Direc­tor of the Alzheimer’s Research and Pre­ven­tion Foun­da­tion. Dr. Khal­sa grad­u­ated from Creighton Uni­ver­sity School of Med­i­cine in 1975, and received his post­grad­u­ate train­ing in anes­the­si­ol­ogy at the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, San Fran­cisco where he was chief res­i­dent. He is also a grad­u­ate of the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, Los Ange­les Med­ical Acupunc­ture for Physi­cians Pro­gram, and has stud­ied mind/body med­i­cine at Har­vard Med­ical School ‘s Mind/Body Med­ical Insti­tute. Dr. Khal­sa is board cer­ti­fied in anes­the­si­ol­ogy and pain management

Douglas Ziedonis

Dr. Douglas Ziedonis, Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School

Dou­glas Ziedo­nis, M.D., M.P.H., is also Pres­i­dent of UMass Memo­r­i­al Behav­ioral Health Ser­vices. He is inter­na­tion­al­ly rec­og­nized for his research and lead­er­ship in address­ing co-occur­ring addic­tion and men­tal ill­ness, in par­tic­u­lar tobac­co and also food addic­tion. He is Direc­tor of the UMass Cen­ter of Excel­lence (COE) in Addic­tions and Co-Direc­tor of the UMass COE in Neu­ro­sciences. He and his research team have been well-fund­ed by NIH, SAMHSA, Foun­da­tions, Vet­er­an Affairs (VA), and state research grants, and his stud­ies include devel­op­ing and eval­u­at­ing med­ica­tion and behav­ioral ther­a­py approach­es and orga­ni­za­tion­al change interventions.

Eddie Martucci, Vice President of Research and Development at Akili Interactive Labs

Dr. Mar­tuc­ci is a co-founder at Akili Inter­ac­tive Labs, a dig­i­tal health com­pa­ny aim­ing to make the first reg­u­la­to­ry-approved diag­nos­tic and ther­a­peu­tic video games. He spear­head­ed the clin­i­cal part­ner­ships that Akili now has with Pfiz­er and mul­ti­ple top-tier aca­d­e­m­ic insti­tu­tions. Dr. Mar­tuc­ci is also a Prin­ci­pal at PureTech Ven­tures. He was pre­vi­ous­ly a Kauff­man Entre­pre­neur Fel­low. Dr. Mar­tuc­ci com­plet­ed his grad­u­ate work at Yale Uni­ver­si­ty in the Depart­ments of Phar­ma­col­o­gy and Mol­e­c­u­lar Bio­physics & Bio­chem­istry, and received a BS in Bio­chem­istry from Prov­i­dence Col­lege and a PhD and MPhil from Yale University.

Evian Gordon

Dr. Evian Gordon, Executive Chairman of Brain Resource

Dr Evian Gor­don, PhD, MBBCh, is the Exec­u­tive Chair­man of Brain Resource. He ini­tial­ly drew upon his sci­ence and med­ical back­ground to estab­lish the inter­dis­ci­pli­nary Brain Dynam­ics Cen­ter, in 1986, help­ing estab­lish an “inte­gra­tive neu­ro­science” approach ground­ed in the use of stan­dard­ized meth­ods across mul­ti­ple types of data. Dr Gor­don then found­ed the “Brain Resource Com­pa­ny”, that cre­at­ed the first inter­na­tion­al data­base on the human brain. Brain Resource has also sup­port­ed the for­ma­tion of a non-prof­it 501c3 Foun­da­tion, called ‘BRAIN­net”, through which sci­en­tists have access to many of these datasets for inde­pen­dent research.


Itamar Lesuisse, Co-founder and CEO of Peak

Ita­mar Lesu­isse is the co-founder and CEO at Peak (pre­vi­ous­ly Brain­Bow), a new mobile brain train­ing plat­form with glob­al aspi­ra­tions recent­ly launched in Asia Pacif­ic to great suc­cess. Pri­or to Brain­Bow, Ita­mar was founder at Scov­ille and Kukunu, sold in 2013, worked on Euro­pean ePay­ments at VISA, launched new prod­uct lines in the UK at, and worked at The Boston Con­sult­ing Group. He hols mul­ti­ple patents and Mas­ter in CS and Elec­tron­ics Engi­neer­ing from Uni­ver­si­ty of Ottawa.


Jack Young, Head of Qualcomm Life Fund

Jack Young heads up the $100M Qual­comm Life Fund (QLF) at Qual­comm Ven­tures, which was recent­ly ranked as one of the most pro­lif­ic ven­ture investors in the dig­i­tal health sec­tor. His invest­ment inter­ests are focused in the areas of inter­sec­tion of health­care prod­ucts and ser­vices and digital/wireless tech­nolo­gies, with invest­ments includ­ing Airstrip, AliveCor, ClearCare, Fit­bit, goB­al­to and Tel­care. Pri­or to Qual­comm Ven­tures, Jack was EVP and US Coun­try Man­ag­er at ZTE. Ear­ly in his career, he held mar­ket­ing and busi­ness devel­op­ment posi­tions at 3Com, GDC, and Nor­tel. Jack earned a MSEE from Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­gary and a MBA from McGill University.

James Cavuoto, founder of Neurotech Reports

James Cavuo­to is edi­tor and pub­lish­er of Neu­rotech Busi­ness Report and the founder of Neu­rotech Reports. Cavuo­to was pre­vi­ous­ly the founder of Micro Pub­lish­ing Press, Inc., a pub­lish­ing com­pa­ny that helped pio­neer the mar­ket for elec­tron­ic pub­lish­ing, dig­i­tal imag­ing, and com­put­er graph­ics. He holds a degree in bio­med­ical engi­neer­ing from Case West­ern Reserve Uni­ver­si­ty, and has also stud­ied human fac­tors engi­neer­ing at Uni­ver­si­ty of South­ern Cal­i­for­nia in Los Ange­les. He is a mem­ber of the IEEE Engi­neer­ing in Med­i­cine and Biol­o­gy Society.

Jayne Plun­kett, Mem­ber of the Group Man­age­ment Board at Swiss Re

Jayne Plun­kett is a Mem­ber of the Group Man­age­ment Board and Divi­sion Head of Casu­alty Under­writ­ing for Swiss Rein­sur­ance world­wide. Based in Zurich, Switzer­land, she is respon­si­ble for all Casu­alty rein­sur­ance busi­ness writ­ten world­wide. Plun­kett has worked over 20 years in the insur­ance and rein­sur­ance indus­tries, hold­ing var­i­ous tech­ni­cal and man­age­ment roles at Swiss Re as well as pre­vi­ous employ­ers. Plun­kett received a BA in Actu­ar­ial Sci­ence from Drake Uni­ver­sity. She is a Fel­low of the Casu­alty Actu­ar­ial Soci­ety and a Mem­ber of the Amer­i­can Acad­emy of Actu­ar­ies. She serves on the World Eco­nomic Forum’s Glob­al Agen­da Coun­cil for Oceans.


Joan Severson, President of Digital Artefacts

Joan Sev­er­son is the Pres­i­dent of Dig­i­tal Arte­facts, the devel­op­er of iPad app Brain­Base­line. The firm spe­cial­izes in research and devel­op­ment of inter­ac­tive com­put­er graph­ics and 3D mod­el­ing and real-time visu­al­iza­tion and sim­u­la­tion of inter­ac­tive geo-spe­cif­ic and oth­er vir­tu­al envi­ron­ments. Joan has col­lab­o­rat­ed with and/or direct­ed research and devel­op­ment of sci­en­tif­ic ani­ma­tions, vir­tu­al envi­ron­ments, user inter­faces and soft­ware for the Smith­son­ian NMAH, the Nation­al Acad­e­my of Sci­ences, NASA, NOAA, the Nation­al Insti­tutes of Health, behav­ioral researchers (psy­chol­o­gists and neu­rol­o­gists) cor­po­rate and uni­ver­si­ty research and devel­op­ment organizations.


Dr. Joe Hardy, VP of Research and Development at Lumos Labs

Dr. Hardy works with a net­work of research col­lab­o­ra­tors from insti­tu­tions such as Stan­ford and Har­vard to val­i­date and improve the cog­ni­tive train­ing pro­grams. Dr. Hardy has over 15 years of expe­ri­ence study­ing the brain, and has pub­lished 20 peer-reviewed sci­en­tif­ic arti­cles on neu­ro­science and cog­ni­tion. He received his Ph.D. from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia, Berke­ley in Cog­ni­tive Psy­chol­o­gy and com­plet­ed a Post­doc­tor­al Research Fel­low­ship at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia, Davis Med­ical Center.


Kate Sullivan, Director of the Brain Fitness Center at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center

Kate Sul­li­van M.S., CCC-SLP, CBIS com­plet­ed her under­grad­u­ate and grad­u­ate degrees in Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Sci­ences and Dis­or­ders at James Madi­son Uni­ver­si­ty. She has been a speech-lan­guage pathol­o­gist at Wal­ter Reed Army Med­ical Cen­ter for 10 years where she recent­ly helped launch the Brain Fit­ness Cen­ter (BFC), locat­ed in the WRAMC’s Mil­i­tary Advanced Train­ing Cen­ter. Her team recent­ly pub­lished Out­comes from a Pilot Study using Com­put­er-Based Reha­bil­i­ta­tive Tools in a Mil­i­tary Pop­u­la­tion at Stud­ies in Health Tech­nol­o­gy and Infor­mat­ics, and her work at Wal­ter Reed was fea­tured on Nation­al Pub­lic Radio’s “All Things Considered.”


Dr. Kenneth Kosik, Co-Director of the UC Santa Barbara Neuroscience Research Institute

Dr. Kosik received his M.D. degree from the Med­ical Col­lege of Penn­syl­va­nia, com­plet­ed a neu­rol­o­gy res­i­den­cy from Tufts New Eng­land Med­ical Cen­ter, and held var­i­ous appoint­ments at the Har­vard Med­ical School. 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 MIT, the Derek Den­ny-Brown Neu­ro­log­i­cal Schol­ar Award from the ANA, the Zenith Award from the Alzheimer’s Asso­ci­a­tion, and a NASA Group Achieve­ment Award.

Mark Baxter, Head of Product at Fit Brains (a Rosetta Stone company)

Mark Bax­ter is the Head of Prod­uct at Fit Brains, which was acquired by Roset­ta Stone in Decem­ber of 2013. Pri­or to the acqui­si­tion, Mark was VP Prod­uct & Cre­ative and Co-founder of Viv­i­ty Labs, a devel­op­er of life-rel­e­vant gam­ing expe­ri­ences across Mobile, Web & Social plat­forms, the cre­ator of Fit Brains, a pop­u­lar casu­al brain gam­ing plat­form. As some­one who believes that games have great poten­tial to be a pow­er­ful medi­um for self-improve­ment, he has been in the games & dig­i­tal media indus­try for more than 13 years as a design­er and pro­duc­er of AAA, casu­al, mobile and social games.

Maseena Ziegler, Author and Forbes Contributor

Maseena Ziegler, named a Young Glob­al Leader by the World Eco­nom­ic Forum in 2014, is a BBC trained jour­nal­ist and an entre­pre­neur. Maseena is fas­ci­nat­ed by ordi­nary peo­ple who achieve extra­or­di­nary things – by cap­tur­ing the highs and lows in their jour­ney to suc­cess, she hopes to inspire oth­ers to take a step clos­er to ful­fill­ing their own dreams. Her book Ladies who Launch in Hong Kong was a num­ber one best-sell­er in Asia, and she cur­rent­ly lives in the US. Learn more.

Dr. Michael O’Donnell, Editor in Chief of the American Journal of Health Promotion

Dr. O’Donnell found­ed the Amer­i­can Jour­nal of Health Pro­mo­tion in 1986 and has served as Edi­tor in Chief since. He is also Direc­tor of the Health Man­age­ment Research Cen­ter at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Michi­gan. Dr. O’Donnell has more than 30 years’ expe­ri­ence work­ing direct­ly with employ­ers, health care orga­ni­za­tions, gov­ern­ment agen­cies, foun­da­tions, insur­ance com­pa­nies and health pro­mo­tion providers to devel­op new and refine exist­ing health pro­mo­tion pro­grams and has served in lead­er­ship roles in four major health sys­tems. He earned a PhD in Health Behav­ior from Uni­ver­si­ty of Michi­gan, an MBA and an MPH in Hos­pi­tal Man­age­ment, both from Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia, Berke­ley, and an AB in psy­chobi­ol­o­gy from Ober­lin College.

Dr. Michael W. Weiner, Lead Scientific Investigator of the Brain Health Registry

Michael W. Wein­er, MD, is Pro­fes­sor in Res­i­dence in the Depart­ment of Radi­ol­o­gy and Bio­med­ical Engi­neer­ing at the UCSF School of Med­i­cine. He is Prin­ci­ple Inves­ti­ga­tor for the Alzheimer’s Dis­ease Neu­roimag­ing Ini­tia­tive (ADNI), and recent­ly launched the Brain Health Reg­istry, a web-based tool for recruit­ing, screen­ing, and lon­gi­tu­di­nal­ly mon­i­tor­ing sub­jects for neu­ro­science stud­ies of all types. Dr. Wiener’s vision­ary goal is to dra­mat­i­cal­ly accel­er­ate and improve the diag­no­sis and treat­ment of neu­ro­log­i­cal dis­eases in a cost effec­tive man­ner by gath­er­ing an unprece­dent­ed amount of data in a sin­gle, eas­i­ly-acces­si­ble location.

Rajiv Pant, Chief Technology Officer & VP at The New York Times

Report­ing to the CIO and to the Exec­u­tive Edi­tor (edi­tor-in-chief) of The New York Times, Mr. Pant super­vis­es a staff of 300+ full-time employ­ees, includ­ing the vice pres­i­dents and heads of engi­neer­ing, e‑commerce, con­tent man­age­ment, inter­ac­tive news, data sci­ence, qual­i­ty, and project man­age­ment. Pri­or to his move to The NY Times, Rajiv spent four years at Conde Nast where, as Vice Pres­i­dent of Dig­i­tal Tech­nol­o­gy, he was respon­si­ble for tech­nol­o­gy for their sig­na­ture brand Web sites. Rajiv twice received the pres­ti­gious Knight Rid­der Excel­lence Award for Tech­nol­o­gy Inno­va­tion, and in 2014 was hon­ored by the World Eco­nom­ic Forum as a Young Glob­al Leader.

Rita Carter, science writer, broadcaster and BBC contributor

Rita Carter is a writer, broad­cast­er and lec­tur­er who spe­cialis­es in brain sci­ence. She is the author of “Map­ping the Mind” the first com­pre­hen­sive layman’s guide to neu­ropsy­chol­o­gy. Oth­er titles include “Explor­ing Con­scious­ness” , “Mul­ti­plic­i­ty – the New Sci­ence of Per­son­al­i­ty” and “The Brain Book”. Rita was a TV pre­sen­ter and pro­duced and pre­sent­ed radio and pro­grammes about med­i­cine and psy­chol­o­gy. She writes for a wide range of news­pa­pers and mag­a­zines, includ­ing BBC Focus, New Sci­en­tist, and the Dai­ly Mail, and talks and lec­tures about brain sci­ence through­out the world.


Dr. Susan Jewell, President of the International Space Medicine Consortium (ISMC)

Susan Jew­ell, MD is a physi­cian, sci­en­tist, researcher, edu­ca­tor, bio­med­ical engi­neer and work­ing to become a flight mem­ber as a com­mer­cial “medical/scientist” astro­naut for low earth orbit pay­load projects and even­tu­al to deep space mis­sions. Her vision is to expand space phys­i­ol­o­gy, tele­health, biomedical/life science/research inter­ests in low­er earth orbit, deep space explo­ration and col­o­niza­tion of Mars. Susan is an alum­ni of the Inter­na­tion­al Space Uni­ver­si­ty ISU and Uni­ver­si­ty of Texas Med­ical Branch UTMB / John­son Space Center,JSC, Space Med­i­cine Pro­gram, and trained at NIH Nation­al Can­cer Insti­tute and UCLA School of Med­i­cine, Dept of Mol­e­c­u­lar and Med­ical Phar­ma­col­o­gy. Learn more.

Thomas R. Insel, MD, Director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)

Thomas R. Insel is Direc­tor of the NIMH, the com­po­nent of the Nation­al Insti­tutes of Health charged with gen­er­at­ing the knowl­edge need­ed to under­stand, treat, and pre­vent men­tal dis­or­ders. Pri­or to this appoint­ment, Dr. Insel was Pro­fes­sor of Psy­chi­a­try at Emory Uni­ver­si­ty, where he was found­ing direc­tor of the Cen­ter for Behav­ioral Neu­ro­science. He has pub­lished over 250 sci­en­tif­ic arti­cles and four books, served on numer­ous aca­d­e­m­ic, sci­en­tif­ic, and pro­fes­sion­al com­mit­tees and boards, and is a recip­i­ent of sev­er­al awards, includ­ing the Out­stand­ing Ser­vice Award from the U.S. Pub­lic Health Ser­vice. Dr. Insel grad­u­at­ed from the com­bined B.A.-M.D. pro­gram at Boston Uni­ver­si­ty, did his intern­ship at Berk­shire Med­ical Cen­ter, Mass­a­chu­setts, and his res­i­den­cy at the Lan­g­ley Porter Neu­ropsy­chi­atric Insti­tute at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia, San Francisco.

Tommy Sagroun

Tommy Sagroun, CEO of CogniFit

Tom­my Sagroun is the CEO of Cog­niFit where he began as the Glob­al Prod­uct Man­ag­er over­see­ing prod­ucts and client rela­tion­ships. He start­ed his career in bank­ing retail at Soci­ete Gen­erale in Paris, and spent sev­er­al years at Deloitte & Touche where he worked in M&A and audit­ing. He lat­er left Paris and joined the New York branch of Bar­clais where he was respon­si­ble for busi­ness devel­op­ment in the biotech­nol­o­gy and soft­ware indus­tries. Mr. Sagroun earned a Mas­ter in Account­ing and Finance from the Acad­e­my of Paris, France. Learn more.

Zack Lynch, Founder and Executive Director of the Neurotechnology Industry Organization

Zack Lynch is the founder and exec­u­tive direc­tor of the Neu­rotech­nol­o­gy Indus­try Orga­ni­za­tion (NIO), the trade group that lob­bies and advo­cates on behalf of com­pa­nies involved in neu­ro­science, brain research insti­tutes, patient advo­ca­cy groups, and brain research foun­da­tions world­wide. He is also the founder and exec­u­tive pro­duc­er of the Neu­roGam­ing Con­fer­ence. Pre­vi­ous­ly, he co-found­ed Neu­roIn­sights and sev­er­al enter­prise soft­ware com­pa­nies in prof­it opti­miza­tion and col­lab­o­ra­tive fore­cast­ing. Zack received an MA in Eco­nom­ic Geog­ra­phy, BS in Evo­lu­tion­ary Biol­o­gy and BS in Envi­ron­men­tal Sci­ence, all from UCLA. Learn more.

Expo Day

Cather­ine Calarco, Chief Mar­ket­ing Officer of HeartMath

Cather­ine Calar­co has over 18 years of expe­ri­ence in gen­er­al man­age­ment, sales and mar­ket­ing, sci­ence and soft­ware prod­uct devel­op­ment, change man­age­ment and inno­va­tion for com­pa­nies in the USA, Europe and Asia Pacif­ic. Among oth­er activ­i­ties, she estab­lished the Poly­mer Advi­so­ry Coun­cil in the USA, sat on the Board of Direc­tors for the Insti­tute of Inter­na­tion­al Research, and co-Chaired the E‑Commerce Action Team. A rec­og­nized lec­tur­er, she has pre­sent­ed at APEC Work­shops, MIT Sloan School of Man­age­ment and the MIT Entre­pre­neur­ship Cen­ter., among oth­ers. Cather­ine holds a Mas­ters of Busi­ness Admin­is­tra­tion from MIT Sloan School of Man­age­ment Sloan Fel­low Pro­gram in Inno­va­tion and Glob­al Leadership.

Colin House, CEO of Sleep Genius

Col­in House is a ser­i­al entre­pre­neur and high­ly skilled in opti­miz­ing busi­ness per­for­mance and results by solv­ing com­plex strat­e­gy and go-to-mar­ket prob­lems. Col­in is respect­ed for his capa­bil­i­ty to guide process, oper­a­tional and strate­gic improve­ments with an entre­pre­neur­ial spir­it. He has exten­sive expe­ri­ence address­ing mobile and social media busi­ness­es and cre­at­ing new indus­try dis­rupt­ing ini­tia­tives to imple­ment pro­grams that pen­e­trate new mar­kets. Col­in has a proven track record of incu­bat­ing, start­ing, turn­ing around and grow­ing high poten­tial growth companies.

Debra Gilmore, Exec­u­tive Director of The Arrow­smith Program

Deb­bie Gilmore is the new Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of Arrow­smith Pro­gram, hav­ing been Arrow­smith’s rep­re­sen­ta­tive in Aus­tralia and New Zealand for 18 months. Deb­bie first heard about the Arrow­smith Pro­gram when she was Head of Diverse Learn­ing Needs at the Catholic Edu­ca­tion Office, Syd­ney, Aus­tralia. Her work as a teacher, lit­er­a­cy advis­er, assis­tant prin­ci­pal and prin­ci­pal helped her under­stand the need to ‘unlock’ the poten­tial of stu­dents with learn­ing dif­fi­cul­ties, and her role as a moth­er of a son with such chal­lenges gave her first hand expe­ri­ence of their strug­gles. Deb­bie holds a Mas­ters of Edu­ca­tion and var­i­ous Grad­u­ate Cer­tifi­cates in Education.

Dr. Dharma Singh Khalsa, Pres­i­dent of the Alzheimer’s Research and Pre­ven­tion Foundation

Dhar­ma Singh Khal­sa, M.D. is the Pres­i­dent and Med­ical Direc­tor of the Alzheimer’s Research and Pre­ven­tion Foun­da­tion. Dr. Khal­sa grad­u­ated from Creighton Uni­ver­sity School of Med­i­cine in 1975, and received his post­grad­u­ate train­ing in anes­the­si­ol­ogy at the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, San Fran­cisco where he was chief res­i­dent. He is also a grad­u­ate of the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, Los Ange­les Med­ical Acupunc­ture for Physi­cians Pro­gram, and has stud­ied mind/body med­i­cine at Har­vard Med­ical School ‘s Mind/Body Med­ical Insti­tute. Dr. Khal­sa is board cer­ti­fied in anes­the­si­ol­ogy and pain management


Joan Severson, President of Digital Artefacts

Joan Sev­er­son is the Pres­i­dent of Dig­i­tal Arte­facts, the devel­op­er of iPad app Brain­Base­line. The firm spe­cial­izes in research and devel­op­ment of inter­ac­tive com­put­er graph­ics and 3D mod­el­ing and real-time visu­al­iza­tion and sim­u­la­tion of inter­ac­tive geo-spe­cif­ic and oth­er vir­tu­al envi­ron­ments. Joan has col­lab­o­rat­ed with and/or direct­ed research and devel­op­ment of sci­en­tif­ic ani­ma­tions, vir­tu­al envi­ron­ments, user inter­faces and soft­ware for the Smith­son­ian NMAH, the Nation­al Acad­e­my of Sci­ences, NASA, NOAA, the Nation­al Insti­tutes of Health, behav­ioral researchers (psy­chol­o­gists and neu­rol­o­gists) cor­po­rate and uni­ver­si­ty research and devel­op­ment organizations.

Michael Meagher, Pres­i­dent of Cogniciti

Michael Meagher runs Cog­nic­i­ti, the cog­ni­tive health spin-off from research cen­ter and hos­pi­tal Bay­crest up in Ontario, Cana­da. His expe­ri­ence has been a mix of ser­i­al entre­pre­neur and cor­po­rate exec­u­tive. His career began with a 9‑year stint in Proc­ter & Gam­ble, and con­tin­ued by run­ning 5 suc­cess­ful busi­ness ser­vices firms where he helped cre­ate more than 3,000 net new jobs. Michael has been a lec­tur­er at the Ivey School of Busi­ness, co-authored a book on envi­ron­men­tal mar­ket­ing, man­aged a suc­cess­ful fed­er­al elec­tion cam­paign, chaired and served on numer­ous Boards, and received mul­ti­ple awards from the Young Pres­i­dents Organization.

Roy Zahut, Lead Scientist and Product Development at Peak

Roy Zahut, Lead Sci­en­tist and Prod­uct Devel­op­ment at Peak, led the win­ning team at the 2013 braini­hack hackathon, the first neu­rotech-relat­ed com­pe­ti­tion that took place at the Google TLV Cam­pus, in which par­tic­i­pants from all fields (physi­cists, pro­gram­mers, hack­ers, mak­ers, neu­ro­sur­geons etc..) had to take an idea that from vision to real­i­ty in under 36 hours. Pre­vi­ous­ly, as Prod­uct Man­ag­er at the Depart­ment of Psy­chol­o­gy at Bar-Ilan Uni­ver­si­ty, he co-led the devel­op­ment of a research-based com­mer­cial online cog­ni­tive enhance­ment & train­ing pro­gram. Roy holds a Mas­ter of Sci­ence (MSc) in Neu­ro­science from Bar-Ilan Uni­ver­si­ty and a B.A. in Psy­chol­o­gy from Open University.

Steve Quan

Steve Quan, VP of Business Development & Strategic Patnerships at Rosetta Stone

Steve Quan leads busi­ness devel­op­ment and strate­gic part­ner­ship efforts across Roset­ta Stone’s busi­ness units—both in the US and glob­al­ly. He is respon­si­ble for dri­ving the advance­ment of the com­pa­ny’s goals through strate­gic alliances, dis­tri­b­u­tion and mar­ket­ing, joint prod­uct devel­op­ment, prod­uct inte­gra­tion, and content/technology/brand licens­ing deals. Before join­ing Roset­ta Stone, he held exec­u­tive roles at AOL, Light­Squared, and new­Bran­d­An­a­lyt­ics. Steve received a BA in His­to­ry from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Michi­gan and a JD from George­town Uni­ver­si­ty, and is cur­rent­ly learn­ing Span­ish and Portuguese.