Founded: Spring 2012
Lead Organizers: David Grad

Times: Sessions occur on the last Thursday of every month from 6:45 – 9:30PM in Brooklyn.

In Brooklyn, our neighbors are innovators that cross virtually all sectors from media and business, to law, public policy, the arts and more. How can we leverage our collective creativity and entrepreneurial spirit to strengthen our local community and beyond? By bringing together our talents in an effort to support one another’s ideas.

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David GradDavid Grad, City Director
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David is the Executive Producer / Head of Integrated Production at the STUDIO in NYC. As a multidisciplinary strategist, producer and creator he helps organizations elevate their brands and develop campaigns to maximize social impact using storytelling, digital campaigning and audience engagement. He is especially passionate about working on issues related to social justice. Prior to working as a consultant, David traversed his way across the spectrum of television production as an actor, writer, set builder and producer. Next came 8 years at Viacom – first launching and overseeing on-air branding and promotion for MTV Tr3s, a channel for young Latinas and Latinos and then directing on-air social-impact campaigns at MTV. David is a husband, father and avid outdoor sports enthusiast.


jorge-fontanezJORGE FONTANEZ
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Jorge founded Marca Studio, a consultancy focused on partnership marketing strategy, stakeholder engagement and business model innovation. He currently serves in both advisory and consulting roles to a variety of organizations including for-profit social enterprise Givkwik, an employee engagement platform.Jorge has been involved with a number of nonprofit organizations committed to a range of issues related to youth, community building, and social justice. Jorge leads individual and organizational transformation work, building on his intrapreneurial work as a change agent in the private sector and as a First Mover Fellow since 2014 of The Aspen Institute, a program of the Business & Society Program. Jorge is a Afro-Latinx, queer affirming voice hailing from Philadelphia,representing the Puerto Rican diaspora in New York City.

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Shaunna is a passionate strategic marketer who helps intelligent and talented people share their ideas through compelling stories that inspire audiences to act.Whether it is helping search engine marketing professionals engage with their small business clients or forensic accountants position themselves as the thought leaders of their industry, Shaunna will find the key insight and build a unique campaign that connects with the right people at the right time. She is excited about working with House of Genius and building memorable experiences where the next generation of entrepreneurs can solve their toughest problems and reach their lofty goals.

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Andrea is a marketing communications professional with deep experience in energy, sustainability and corporate social responsibility from both the private and nonprofit sectors. A serial entrepreneur, she has built three tech start-ups, one of which received a top award from the U.S. EPA. She enjoys exploring creative approaches to business that produce measurable, positive social and environmental impact. Originally from California, Andrea lived in Norway for 5 years and has an undying thirst for languages, diverse cultures and nature.

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Andrew is the principal of Brooklyn Strategic, a digital communications firm focused on integrated marketing plans, development projects and campaigns. He also leverages his over 20 years of digital communications experience as an Adjunct Professor at NYU. Before Brooklyn Strategic, Andrew was the Managing Director of Connections Media in NY with clients like Bloomberg Philanthropies,CurePC, Cablevision and NBCUniversal. Andrew joined Connections Media after four years as VP, Digital Public Affairs at Edelman in Washington, D.C. At Edelman, Andrew conceived and managed communications strategies and led a team devoted to engaging online allies, managing digital advocacy tools, and developing and maintaining social media platforms for leading public affairs and advocacy clients. Andrew enjoys reading, biking, running and teaching and makes his home in Brooklyn with his wife and their two children. Andrew holds a BA from Dartmouth College in Philosophy and English.

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Maurice Russell is founder of Media Rights Management (MRM), a consultancy created to help music and media companies secure and manage the rights required to drive their businesses. A respected thought leader in intellectual property rights management, he has played a pivotal role in innovating music licensing structures for many of the industry’s best known digital music service providers. Prior to launching MRM, he held senior roles in operations and strategy at the Harry Fox Agency, the nation’s premiere music rights agency, where he led the transformation of the company’s core operations and business strategy. With two decades of experience in music company business affairs, his career has closely tracked the evolution of the industry from the heyday of the CD to downloads to streaming. A consummate music-lover and part-time composer, Maurice hails from the Washington, D.C. area and resides in the heart of NYC’s East Village.


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Brooklyn, NY 11201


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2017 Session Dates

June 10th
July 18th
August 22nd
September 19th
October 17th
November 21st
December 19th