Campfire Talks

 

Those who don’t heed conventional wisdom. Who are sick of the present. Who don’t care if the road less traveled is bumpy. An Original Thinker makes waves, and legions want to ride them. When was the last time you saw something wrong that no one else did? You just might be the next Original Thinker.

On Thursday, May 26, 2016 the UCLA Anderson Campfire, which followed TEDxUCLASalon, gathered students, faculty and alumni to share their perspectives on what it means to be an “Original Thinker,” inspired by Adam Grant’s TED Talk.

Campfire Talks

 
CAMPFIRE TALKS 2016

David Rhein (’17) and His Awesomely Weird Animal Energy

CAMPFIRE TALKS 2016

The story of Ali Kermani (’09), inventor and VP of new initiatives at Razor USA.

CAMPFIRE TALKS 2016

Ryan Cummins (’11) looped in A-lister after A-lister for deserving charities.

CAMPFIRE TALKS 2016

Professor Craig Fox and a team of researchers devised an ingenious way to prevent overprescription of antibiotics.

CAMPFIRE TALKS 2016

Why You Should Welcome Discomfort by Former Military Drone Pilot, Danny Feldman (’18)

CAMPFIRE TALKS 2016

Professor Maia Young learned personally how negative emotions can help you see the other side of the story.

Campfire Speakers

 

What Hunting Down Bin Laden Taught Me About Entrepreneurship

Daniel Feldman FEMBA (’18)

Danny Feldman is founder and CEO of Skyborne, a tech startup that allows businesses to find and hire drone pilots and utilize the data they provide in real time. A former U.S. Air Force combat pilot with over 1,000 hours on eight different aircraft, Danny earned his wings and commercial pilot license from the Air Force’s Undergraduate Pilot Training course before volunteering to fly MQ-1 Predator drones in Iraq, Afghanistan and other hostile territories. When he’s not working, Danny can be found flying, ballroom dancing and debating behavior economics with his finance professor as a UCLA Anderson FEMBA.

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Fighting Superbugs with Behavioral Insights

Craig Fox, Professor, UCLA Anderson, Behavioral Decision Making

Craig Fox is the Harold Williams Chair in Management at UCLA Anderson and holds joint appointments in psychology and medicine at UCLA. He is also co-director of the UCLA Interdisciplinary Research Group in Behavioral Decision Making.

Fox’s research focuses primarily on behavior under risk, uncertainty and ambiguity, using a combination of methods that include surveys, laboratory and field experiments, analysis of archival data and brain imaging. He also applies behavioral economics and social psychology to improving health and financial decisions. Fox’s research papers have appeared in top journals of management, economics, psychology, neuroscience, medicine, and law. He is founding co-editor of Behavioral Science & Policy and has served on numerous editorial boards. He currently serves as co-president of the Behavioral Science & Policy Association and is a former president of the Society for Judgment and Decision Making.

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The Entrepreneurial Alchemy

Ali Kermani (’09), VP of New Initiatives at Razor USA

Ali Kermani is a product designer, brand manager, and VP of new initiatives at Razor USA, where he has been working since the company’s founding in 2000. He oversees numerous aspects of Razor’s product development and marketing efforts. While Ali’s influence can be found on many of Razor’s products, his most notable work has been related to designing and marketing the award-winning Crazy Cart, which was named 2014’s Outdoor Toy of the Year. In his role as Razor’s VP of new initiatives, Ali is charged with leading Razor’s explorations down new avenues of marketing, sales and product design. An L.A. native, Ali currently lives in Monrovia, CA, with his wife and son.

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Is There Wisdom In Emotional Decision Making?

Maia Young, Associate Professor, UCLA Anderson, Organizational Management

Maia Young is an associate professor of management and organizations. She joined the faculty in 2004 after earning her Ph.D. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. She teaches Leadership Foundations, Organizational Behavior and an elective called The Emotionally-Intelligent Leader. Young studies the psychology of individual decision-making in the workplace, particularly the way that decisions can be affected by emotions, culture and religion. Her research has been covered by the Economist, NPR’s Marketplace, strategy + business, Inc.com, Science Magazine and Psychology Today.

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Disrupting the Philanthropic World

Ryan Cummins (’11), Co­Founder & Co­CEO of Omaze

Ryan Cummins is the co-founder and co-CEO of Omaze, a cause marketplace that raises money and awareness for charity by offering the chance to win once-in-a-lifetime experiences. In just two years, Omaze has disrupted traditional models of fundraising and raised millions for charity through campaigns ranging from the chance to appear in Star Wars: Episode VII, to riding in a tank and crushing a car with Arnold Schwarzenegger, to walking the red carpet on a date with George Clooney. Prior to launching Omaze, Ryan pursued his passion for using storytelling to create social impact as the executive producer of content for Decade of Difference, the Clinton Foundation’s globally televised concert event featuring stars of film, music, politics and sports. Before that he created Untitled Thinkers, a media property based on a series of intimate conversations he filmed with 120 Nobel Prize, Pulitzer and Fields Medal winners and Internet pioneers. Ryan started his career in cause content as the first director on Live Earth, the largest concert ever held, featuring 150 artists in seven major cities all on the same day. He holds a B.A. in economics from Stanford University and an MBA from UCLA Anderson.

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The Power of Beliefs

David Rhein MBA (‘17)

David Rhein studied economics and psychology at Harvard University, and afterward joined the Peace Corps in Ecuador. Later, working at Target Corporation in Minneapolis, he discovered yoga and quickly recognized its physical and mental benefits. He began studying yoga and Ayurveda, and embarked on an in-depth program of study in Thai Massage, ultimately leaving Target to study yoga and massage in Thailand and India for two years. He’s now studying entrepreneurship at UCLA Anderson, and is excited to apply the knowledge he gained in the East to the Western corporate world with his newest venture, EmployYoga. David is now offering yoga and mindfulness workshops at small businesses and helping to reshape what it means to be healthy at work.

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Campfire Hosts

 
Saki Takasu

Saki is originally from Saitama, Japan and grew up coast to coast in the U.S. during her childhood. Prior to UCLA Anderson, she began her career in global supply chain management at Fortune 500 companies in Hong Kong, England, France, and across the U.S., and subsequently pursued a career in non-profit management at a U.S.-Japan relations organization in Washington, DC. After graduation, she will start her consulting career at McKinsey & Company’s Business Technology practice in the Asia Pacific. Many of the Class of 2017 may recognize Saki from the orientation days, and the Class of 2016 from various student activities and social events. To date, Saki has traveled to 37 countries, and she records her various encounters with locals and (mis)adventures in a travel blog.

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Mark Reidy

Mark was born and raised on the East Coast, living in Washington, DC, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and New York City. Prior to attending UCLA Anderson, Mark worked for Strategic Social performing socio-cultural research, consulting for technology based infrastructure development projects in several post-conflict countries including Afghanistan, Iraq, Tunisia, Kuwait, and Lebanon. Mark is a competitive runner and cyclist, qualifying for Team USA in the Long Course Duathlon in 2014. He also enjoys surfing and playing piano in his free time.

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