...ran screaming from academia and an intended career as a human geneticist, and fell headlong into the world of themed entertainment as a museum wonk. Starting with a stint at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, and now as a Principal at Thinkwell Group, she's had the opportunity to see the power and impact of cultural attractions and entertainment around the world. She believes we have a responsibility to do better: to create workplaces where every voice is valued and entertainment where everyone has an opportunity to see themselves positively reflected. And she's also really, really crabby about microaggressions.
Nicola 'Nikky' Rossini
She got tired of watching her industries add infinite "Next Gen" programs only to abandon people at 30 and decided that rather than just Life Coach one person at a time, we'd build an army to help raise each other up in response to the attrition of talented, brilliant, creative women tired of slamming their heads against brick walls.
Falling down the rabbit hole of Immersive Entertainment from Live Shows and Festivals meant Nicola brought with her a passion for supporting artists and technical minds on accelerated timelines, tackling multi-level integration with a decoder ring of understanding from interests best described as "Yes, and..." Most often found in airport terminals, out Riding Chaos whether that's recovering projects, defending show, clearing the paths to action and delivery, or helping coach artists and creators to their deepest truth.
Trent's storied career embodies the circuitous path so many of us take. After starting in theatrical production, migrating into film and digital creation, she said to hell with it and co-founded her own company, Blue Telescope. As Managing Director, she's overseen the company grow to be both respected and lauded, guiding an in-house team that's won more than 100 awards for creativity (including an AAM Muse Award) for their engaging, boundary-pushing interactives. She's executive produced projects for a constellation of big-name clients. And she is more than over having people she shocked that she is female and competent and technologically savvy and the head of the firm.
Hailing all the way from Cameroon, West Africa, by way of New Orleans with an MFA-layover at Columbia University, Fri has created distinctive guest experiences in film, theatre, publishing and live events. She has done it all, from waiting tables and acting in national commercials, to serving as creative director for Bollywood Parks in Dubai and PM for the Los Angeles Downtown Latin Museum Gala Opening and T-Mobile HTC’s corporate tours, while si. Simply put, when it comes to working the room, She's done it! As a featured consultant expert on national networks including KTLA, FOX and Huffington Post, Fri led an online movement to shed a more positive light on multi-cultural and interracial marriages, through Wedding Nouveau magazine, a premier online and print global lifestyle publication. When not multi-tasking like a beast, Fri can be found watching indie art house movies and contemplating her next hostile take-over.
Sarah Cole stumbled into museums by way of leaving med school (thanks to some crap assumptions about her path as a female doctor and failings of the mental health system) and needing a job. She fell in love with not what museums are but what the could be, and has been stumbling in fits and starts to push rocks up hills. She started in the trenches at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, moved through a few other organizations, and is now VP for Guest Experience at the Adler Planetarium. Having spent the last decade telling other people “You’ve got to meet so and so…” she’s ready to join and help lead this army. As a queer, cis, white, privileged mom, she pushes for intersectionality and centering of underrepresented voices. Still learning, falling down, trying to do better every day. Fired Up. Ready to go.
Traci's entertainment career started as a child actress/singer until as a teen she realized that she wasn't very good, and so she went to college to be a lawyer. However, her love for the entertainment world persisted and she ended up with a double major in Theatre and Government, and she fell (almost literally) into lighting design. Traci spent years designing theatre before she realized that Telling Stories with Light was her passion, and this allowed her to reach more people by working in many different fields...Broadway, museums, theme parks, and much more.
So, over the past 16 years, in addition to her continuing theatre career, she has been the leader of Luce Group, a New York based, woman-owned design firm that specializes in lighting design for museum, themed environments, and live entertainment.