Jake Schwartz co-founded General Assembly and as CEO, guides the organization’s growth and expansion. Under his leadership, General Assembly has scaled to nine cities in under two years and has helped more than 30,000 students create opportunities through high quality online and offline educational programming. Most recently, Jake was named to Vanity Fair’s “The Next Establishment.”
Prior to founding General Assembly, Jake worked for Associated Partners, a multi-stage private equity firm focused on telecommunications, media and technology co-funded by Liberty Media Corporation and Goldman Sachs Investment Partners.
Before joining the Skillshare team, Abigail Besdin worked on brand partnerships at Meetup. Prior to that she was on her way to a Philosophy PhD when she realized education could use an overhaul. A native New Yorker, she now lives abroad in Brooklyn and in her spare time, watches way too much TV and does not enough yoga. She currently leads the Education Team at Skillshare.
Joe Hall is founder and president of Ghetto Film School (GFS), an award-winning, independent film organization located in the South Bronx, USA. GFS uses hands-on production, professional and business skills development, cinema studies and advanced storytelling techniques to train 650 NYC teens each year. An in-house production company, Digital Bodega, generates earned income to support the organization’s free training programs while offering paid work and new professional experiences for alumni. An additional 300,000+ national and international students access GFS through an online MasterClass series led by top film directors and industry professionals.
Joel Rose is the Co-Founder and CEO of New Classroms. New Classrooms is a nonprofit organization made up of educators, operators and technologists who collaborate with schools to enable personalized learning for students. Previously, Rose served as CEO of School of One, an initiative within the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE), Chief Executive for Human Capital and as Chief of Staff to the Deputy Chancellor at NYCDOE. He has been involved in education for more than 15 years, first as a fifth grade teacher in Houston and later as a senior executive at Edison Schools where he served as the company‘s Associate General Counsel, Chief of Staff, General Manager and Vice President for School Operations.
Laura Pappano is an award-winning journalist, author and blogger who has written about education, social issues, politics and gender (especially in the context of sports) for more than 20 years. She has written about the online education landscape for The New York Times, and Harvard Education Letter in addition to devoting one of her books, Inside School Turnarounds (2010), to the larger topic of education. Pappano has also moderated education panels at SXSWedu and a Technapex meetup on “Open and Social Education.”
THNKR, created by @radical.media in 2012, is an original YouTube channel that gives viewers extraordinary access to the people, stories and ideas that are transforming the world. In a media landscape lacking in challenging and educational content, THNKR serves as the preeminent destination for smart entertainment, bringing the unfettered opinions of today's most intriguing and provocative minds to stimulate, challenge and perhaps, as the channel's tag line says, CHANGE YOUR MIND. THNKR was also the recipient of the 2013 IAWTV Award for Best Documentary Web Series for the show, PRODIGIES.
Check out THNKR: http://www.youtube.com/user/thnkrtv