MBA Innovation Summit 2015

Friday, April 10th | New York, NY

The Innovator's Journey

The MBA Innovation Summit (MBAIS) is a student-led initiative, jointly organized by students from Columbia Business School, The Wharton School, and the Yale School of Management. The purpose of the summit is to introduce top MBA students to the leading companies and thinkers driving innovation across sectors. The MBAIS brings together leaders from innovative companies, clients with innovative problems, and students who have innovative dreams to discover how we can learn from each other to build disruptive and evidence-based ideas for the future.Check last year's summit for more details.

Tickets on sale now! CBS & Public / Yale / Wharton


Learn from industry leaders, innovative companies, and each other about innovation


Build disruptive and innovative ideas for the future


Sustain and manage innovation through the company life cycle


Cristina Ripperger

What if!

Cristina unlocks our clients' product and business unit potential through market-focused insight. Her experience includes a diverse range of growth strategy, market entry, and disruptive innovation projects, particularly within the health care industry. As part of the ?What If! Commercial Strategy team, Cristina collaborates with clients to validate, plan, and implement their innovations. More about Cristina »

Cristina was formerly a Principal with the Health Services Practice of Booz & Company. She earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BBA from the University of Michigan. In her spare time, Cristina can be found cheering for Michigan football, biking in Central Park with her husband and two daughters, or fundraising for Cycle for Survival, the team cycling event that raises money for research at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Jon Stein

CEO and Founder

Jon Stein is the CEO and founder of Betterment. Passionate about making life better, and with his experience from his career of advising banks and brokers on risk and products, he founded Betterment in 2008. Jon is a graduate of Harvard University and Columbia Business School, and he holds Series 7, 24, 63, and is a CFA, Chartered Financial Analyst. More about Jon »

His interests lie at the intersection of behavior, psychology, and economics. What excites him most about his work is making everyday activities and products more efficient, accessible, and easy to use.

Reina Arakji

Parsons Strategic Design & Management Program

Reina Y. Arakji is a design and innovation strategist with transdisciplinary expertise in providing insights that drive business decision-making. She is currently Assistant Professor and Director of the undergraduate Strategic Design and Management program at Parsons NYC. More about Reina »

She teaches undergraduate, graduate and executive courses, publishes in leading peer-reviewed journals in the area of innovation strategy, as well as leads research and advisory projects that build innovation opportunities in situations of economic and social change. Reina is also Managing Partner of ANKA, an innovation strategy consulting firm offering services to progressive organizations throughout the design, tuning and transformation cycles of their evolution. Twitter: @ReinaArakji

Miles Begin

VP of UX and Design
American Express

Miles Begin is a design maker and thinker. He’s VP of UX and Design at American Express where heleads the Enterprise Growth design team, which develops products and services that bring new customers to Amex. He has a talent for collaborative problem solving and has worked to build a strong culture of design across the company. More about Miles »

Miles joined American Express in 2012 after founding a Manhattan office and building an interaction design group for product innovation consultancy Kaleidoscope. With a background in Industrial Design, Miles’ hand can be seen in products of all sorts – from electronics, to medical devices, to consumer packaged goods. He is also a co­founder of The Design Gym, which empowers people and companies to create change and innovate through access to the power of design thinking.

Stacey Benseler

Director, MinuteClinic Business Development
CVS Health

Stacey Benseler, JD. joined CVS Health in November of 2011 as Senior Manager of Medicare Product Management. Shortly thereafter, she took on the role of Director, Business Development for MinuteClinic. Stacey has more than 14 years of experience in the healthcare industry. More about Stacey »

Her current strategic focus is on the expansion and implementation of business development opportunities and the investigation and evaluation of new business to generate increased business and revenue for MinuteClinic. Prior to working at CVS, Stacey worked for Independence Blue Cross (“IBC”) in Philadelphia where she was responsible for Independence Blue Cross's entire book of Medicare Advantage and Medicare prescription drug plan business; as well as, IBC’s Medicare supplement and ancillary product portfolio. While at IBC, Stacey developed, implemented and managed Pennsylvania’s first ever senior-specific ancillary product, offering only hearing, dental and vision benefits to enhance IBC’s overall senior portfolio. Stacey worked closely with local Philadelphia advocacy groups and community leaders and was often called upon by local government leaders to speak on Medicare issues - specifically regarding Dual Eligibles. Prior to taking on that role, Stacey practiced law, specifically in the areas of Medicare and Medicaid. Stacey was formerly served on the Board of Directors for the West Chester Area Senior Center and St. Mary’s Family Respite Center – a respite center for families affected by HIV and AIDS. Stacey is a graduate of the Gettysburg College, holds her Juris Doctorate from Widener University School of Law and is currently obtaining a Masters in Healthcare Leadership at Brown University.

Stuart Eccles

Co­Founder, President of the Americas, Chief Technology Officer
Made by Many

Stuart Eccles is Co­Founder, President of the Americas and Chief Technology Officer of Made by Many, a global innovation company that helps brands invent new digital products that result in stronger customer relationships and new revenue streams.

Gene Liebel

Partner, Product Management
Work & Co

Gene Liebel guides clients in their efforts to envision, plan, and roll out best­in­category products and services. Most recently, Gene has led Work & Co engagements at Virgin America, Google, Showtime, and the NBA. More about Gene »

Prior to Work & Co, Gene was Founding Partner, Chief Strategy Officer at Huge, where he created the User Experience discipline and oversaw the development of the agency's unique capabilities and process, including its groundbreaking approach to UX, product design, and analytics. Gene also oversaw several of the company's most successful and newsworthy projects, including HBO GO, while helping to grow the company from three to 600 employees. Previously, Gene was Vice President, Product Management at Silverpop Systems, responsible for the definition and development of all products. At Silverpop, he created the company's first software, leading Forrester Research to call Silverpop ""the vendor to beat in the best­of­breed marketing automation category."" Gene's work has won recognition from Cannes Lions, Ad Tech, Communication Arts, the Emmys, One Club and many others. He holds a B.A. in Classics from Bard College.

Jennifer Lopez

Design Thinking Strategist
Capital One Labs

Jennifer has made it her mission to be a storyteller of the human experience. As a designer and entrepreneur she uses the human centered design process to create new products, business structures and approaches to marketing and strategy.When she isn't digging into design, she is cooking and creating recipes in her small white kitchen in the sunny side of San Francisco. More about Jennifer »

Jennifer currently is a lecturer at Stanford University and works as a Design Thinking Strategist at Capital One Labs.

Dan McClure


Dan McClure has spent 30 years as a hands-on insurgent innovator, working with diverse institutions spanning global manufacturers, fast moving startups, local government consortiums and international humanitarian agencies. Defining and codifying new ways to create value in a rapidly evolving economy is his passion. More about Dan »

He leverages extensive experience (and enthusiasm for) blowing up the status quo to shape and test approaches for innovating in complexity. Today he is a leader of Innovation Design efforts for ThoughtWorks, a global technology and innovation consultancy.

Tim Riley

Director of Online Experience
Warby Parker

Tim Riley is the Director of Online Experience for Warby Parker, where he works to make the process of buying eyeglasses online as fun and easy as possible. Prior to Warby Parker, Tim developed strategies for enhancing the customer experience for clients such as Volkswagen, Audi, Walgreens and Kaplan University. He's also done some other interesting stuff but he prefers to leave his bio short.

Davis Smith


Davis is the CEO of Cotopaxi, an outdoor gear brand with a social mission. He was previously the Co­CEO of and, Brazil’s Startup of the Year in 2012, which raised over $40M in venture capital. In 2004, he also founded, and later sold,, America’s largest pool table retailer. More about Davis »

Davis is a graduate of Brigham Young University and of the University of Pennsylvania where he obtained an MBA from the Wharton School and an MA from the School of Arts and Sciences. He is a Fellow of the Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies.

Richard Steele


Dickie joined SYPartners as a Principal in 2013 with over a decade of experience in corporate strategy and organizational consulting. During his time as a partner at Marakon Associates and as a senior partner and head of the New York office at The Bridgespan Group, he advised clients across the consumer goods, media and financial services sectors including senior leaders at Cadbury Schweppes, The Wall Street Journal and ABN Amro. More about Richard »

In the social sector, he has worked on problems relating to education, technology and global development for The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The Omidyar Network, and The United Nations Foundation, among others.Dickie has written extensively on strategic management for publications including in Harvard Business Review and Sloan Management Review. He also teaches a course on leadership at The School of International & Public Affairs, Columbia University and serves on the boards of The Atlantic Council, The Association of Public Television Stations and The DO School. He studied at Durham University and has an MBA with distinction from INSEAD.

Alan Tisch

CEO & Co-founder

Alan Tisch is the founder and CEO of Spring, a mobile marketplace where customers shop directly within the app from a curated community of brands. Prior to founding Spring, Alan spent time at and Mayor Bloomberg’s office, where he launched the NYC Big Apps initiative.

Jason Wisdom

Co-Founder & Managing Partner
The Design Gym

Jason has spent his career bringing bright minds together to take ideas and push them out into the world. As a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of The Design Gym, Jason has helped build creative capacity and culture change in some of the most forward thinking organizations in the world. More about Jason »

In his role at The Design Gym he oversees the Collaborative Projects practice, creating opportunities for the company’s thousands of community members to come together and tackle incredibly complex organizational challenges for The Design Gym’s clients. His work has spanned across industries with organizations including Capital One,, Etsy, Mozilla and Applegate Farms. Jason’s been quoted and featured in publications including Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Fox Business News and PSFK.


Tentative Schedule for the Summit

11:30 - 12:00 | Registration
12:00 - 12:25 | Opening Remarks & Keynote Address
12:30 - 1:15 | Learn: Viewpoints on Disruption in Business
1:15 - 2:00| Learn Workshop: The Power of the Interview
2:00 - 2:10 | Break
2:10 - 3:00 | Build: 10-minute Talks on Building Innovation
3:00 - 4:30 | Build Workshop: Ideation
4:30 - 4:40 | Break
4:40 - 5:25 | Sustain: Panel on Continuing Innovation in Large Organizations
5:30 - 6:00 | Ending Keynote
6:00 - 8:00 | Reception (beer/wine will be served)

Studio 450 - 450 W 31st St, New York, NY 10001


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