2015 Speakers

"Know Your Audience"

Andy Schadwinkel

Andy Schadwinkel Director of Strategic Marketing Initiatives, UNL

Andy is a CASE Grand Gold and Addy award-winning strategic marketing director with ten+ years of higher ed project management/writing experience and advertising agency copywriting experience.

"Transformation: Innovating in a World in Flux"

Mary Meehan

Mary Meehan CEO, Panoramix Global, Minneapolis, MN

Mary Meehan is the co-founder and lead cultural Intelligence analyst for Panoramix Global, an international research consultancy helping brands and organizations understand the complexities of future consumer behavior as a pathway to growth and innovation. She is an expert in providing clients with ahead of the curve insights on trends, movements, and market changes that will profoundly influence their business outcomes.

A serial entrepreneur with more than 20 years of experience as a leader in consumer behavior analysis, in 1992, Meehan co-founded the international consumer trend agency Iconoculture, recognized by Inc. magazine as one of the 500 fastest growing private companies in America and providing the research industry's first theoretical framework for translating trends into practical insights using a highly qualitative, proprietary methodology. Meehan has worked with Volvo, Hasbro, Wal-Mart, Pepsi Co, General Mills, J.P. Morgan, Time Inc., AARP, and a myriad of other companies in helping to better understand the realities of the consumer landscape.

In 2010 Meehan sold her firm and founded Panoramix Global, a next generation research and consumer behavior firm that specializes in providing clients with a hybrid, analytic perspective that maximizes cultural data to deliver expert foresights driving consumer decision-making, working with clients to develop effective strategies for growth in the face of these learnings.

Meehan is the co-author of The Future Ain't What It Used to Be: The 40 Cultural Trends Transforming Your Job, Your Life, And Your World. She speaks and writes frequently on the topics of consumer behavior and the market forces that influence change, currently a contributor to Forbes.com. Her opinions and insights have appeared in Advertising Age, the Associated Press, BBC, CNN, Wired, and The Washington Post, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and BusinessWeek. A frequent speaker, she has appeared at the Research Advertising Conference, Ad-tech, Future Trends, The Market Research Event, and the CEO Leadership Roundtable. Follow Mary on twitter @PanoramixGlobal

"Delivering the Message: One Tweet, Snap and Instagram Filter at a Time"

Tyler Thomas Social Media Specialist, Strategic Marketing, UNL

A professional communicator, Tyler Thomas is an online enthusiast with a passion for digital communication, content strategy and relationship building. To start his career, Tyler spent 2.5 years finding his natural roots in building interactive online experiences at Nebraska’s largest advertising agency Swanson Russell. Tyler is now knee-deep in building award-winning brand engagement via social media for the “BIG RED” brand as the Social Media Specialist for UNL. His expertise focuses on building branded experiences through social media communications. Along with building social communities, Tyler is a self-proclaimed foodie and runs his own Nebraska focused food blog “NebraskaFoodie.com.” Follow him on Twitter at @TylerAThomas.

"How to be More Creative"

Shane Farritor

Shane Farritor Ph.D. Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, UNL

Shane Farritor is a professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering at the University of Nebraska—Lincoln. He has created miniature surgical robots and robotic highway safety markers, among other things. This year he began teaching the first-ever makers’ course—a class that meets in a new Maker Space at Nebraska Innovation Campus for the purpose of creating. Farritor holds a Ph.D. and a master’s degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a bachelor’s degree from UNL.

Dr. Farritor joined the faculty of the Department of Mechanical Engineering in 1998. Prior to coming to UNL he worked in the Field and Space Robotics Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Unmanned Vehicle Lab at the C.S. Draper Laboratories. Dr. Farritor has studied at the Kennedy Space Center, Goddard Space Flight Center and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He is a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and serves on the AIAA Robotics Technical Committee. 

"The Story of M"

Steve Busch

Steve Busch Brand Manager, University of Michigan

Steve began the University of Michigan's first brand manager in 2012. In this role, Steve has refreshed and bolstered the “block M,” transitioning the iconic 'M' from a mark of school spirit and sports affinity into a logo that reinforces the ground-breaking achievements of one of the world's great public higher education institutions since its founding nearly 200 years ago.

In the historically decentralized U-M environment, he has successfully produced more than 2,500 cohesive brand extending ‘signatures’ adopted by academic, administrative, and auxiliary departments of U-M’s three campuses, providing constituents with a unified brand presence.

Prior to his current role, Steve spent five years as creative director and then interim marketing & communications director for U-M's top-ranked Ross School of Business. It was here that Steve learned first-hand the unique demands and constraints of managing a higher-ed brand in the 21st century.

Steve boasts a 20-year career as a creative director, working with significant international brands, including Audi, Ford, Microsoft, Reebok, Sony, and many others from the agency and corporate sides of the table.

"Organizing for Effectiveness - Web Content Strategy"

Kathe Andersen

Kathe Anderson Publications Coordinator, Hixson-Lied College of Fine & Performing Arts

Kathe Andersen manages multiple communications platforms for her college. She also orchestrates special events including the Nebraska Young Artist Awards and College Honors Day. Her work in college relations includes helping to manage relationships with donors, alumni and the Hixson-Lied Advisory Board. Andersen helped lead a recent college website renovation in cooperation with her dean, the assistant director of recruiting, and departmental web staff and faculty. The new site has won multiple awards.

Brad Stauffer

Brad Stauffer Director of External Relations, College of Education & Human Sciences

Brad Stauffer has spent most of his career in communications for educational organizations. He is accredited in public relations through the Public Relations Society of America, and has a strong background in strategic communications planning, writing, video production and project management. He began his career in news and sports broadcasting. He led the recent renovation of all content and organization of his college’s website.

Amber Wolff

Amber Wolff Director of Marketing & Digital Strategy, College of Law

Amber Wolff is successfully managing multiple communication platforms that connect with Nebraska Law stakeholders and increase visibility for the college. Amber joins Nebraska Law with over five years of advertising agency and higher education experience. She is an adjunct professor at Nebraska Wesleyan University and is the president-elect for the Lincoln Chapter of the American Marketing Association.