MEET OUR EXECUTIVE TEAM & FACULTY
The Academy of Tomorrow is directed by a diverse group of creative, business and tech leaders who are committed to shaping our collective future by helping to develop the next generation of leaders and innovators.
Founder & Chief Executive Officer
Lital Marom is a digital visionary and serial-entrepreneur, passionate about finding new ways to use emerging technologies and system thinking to create impact on a global scale.
Lital led the global strategy and sales of Fortune 100 corporations across three continents before going on to found four enterprises: Unfold Media Group, the BDN Ventures, Beyond and the Academy of Tomorrow.
She founded the Academy of Tomorrow with the mission to prepare the next generation for the future of work. Lital’s passion is to create a new landscape for learning that fosters curiosity, tenacity and an undeniable belief that we are all capable of making a positive, long-term impact on the world around us.
Her company Beyond, an innovative design studio, was founded with the mission to explore the practice of leadership, self-organized learning, problem solving and design thinking. At her consultancy Unfold Media Group, she works closely with executive teams to leverage the power of exponential technologies and form data strategies to grow and scale their business.
A sought-after keynote speaker, corporate innovator and a frequent lecturer of innovation, new business models and the digital platform economy. She applies her extensive research to leading recurring Master Classes in partnership with Spark Institute, IBS Business School and Singularity University. She is a keynote favourite who has spoken at PechaKucha Vancouver, TEDx Amsterdam, and a long list of industry conferences including MEF, IAB, GSM, Mobile World Congress (MWC) Asia, NAB and iHollywood.
Lital started her career in engineering and product management in Israel and Europe. She is a thought leader on agile business processes, impact and transformation towards digital businesses. She holds a computer science and business degrees from the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. She studied investment banking at NYU’s Stern School of Business, Transformative Strategies and Artificial Intelligence at MIT’s Sloan School of Management, and is a fellow of THNK School of Creative Leadership.
Chief Impact Officer
Aranka Anema is a global thought leader in the use of scientific evidence and exponential technologies to promote social impact.
As scientist, Aranka has published extensively on global health, food security and sustainable development. She has won Canada’s highest academic accolades, and speaks regularly at industry conferences. Aranka has led impact audits for public, private and philanthropic organizations spanning operations across 50 countries and representing over US$300 Million in foreign aid investment. She is a globally appointed advisor the United Nations and World Bank, where she guides evidence-based policies and programs aligned with the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals.
She is passionate about giving youth the tools and practical know-how to use scientific innovation and technology to drive the change in the world they want to see.
Aranka has a Masters of Science from University College London, PhD in epidemiology from the University of British Columbia, and Post-Doc from Harvard Medical School and Boston Children’s Hospital. Aranka is Alumni of Singularity University’s 2017 Global Solutions Program and Ambassador of Singularity U’s Vancouver Chapter, which promotes the use of exponential technologies to positively impact the lives of 1 Billion people.
Chief Education Officer
Alex is an executive coach and leadership advisor, with extensive experience in leadership development, improving individual and team performance, and catalyzing organizational change. He has two decades’ experience working with leading global businesses, professional firms, and international organizations, and has served clients on all five continents and in a wide range of cultural and industry contexts, with a particular focus on knowledge-based businesses.
His experience includes 15 years advising senior leaders at McKinsey & Co., and three years working with the CEO and Management Team at IFC/The World Bank.
Alex has also worked with the CEOs and senior leaders at many Fortune 500 companies, business families, entrepreneurial start-ups and non-profit organizations. He holds a first-class degree in Theoretical Physics from Cambridge University, and a PhD in Leadership and Organizational Behaviour from London University.
Laura is a lifelong educator, performer, and social activist committed to cultivating creative confidence and collaboration skills through experiential and arts-infused learning. All of Laura’s socially impactful initiatives are designed to empower participants to become instruments of change in their own lives.
Laura’s powerful facilitation work has also had a broad global reach through youth songwriting and interdisciplinary art projects that she has led in India, Nepal, and Columbia. She founded Instruments of Change, a non-profit that leads highly innovative, arts-based community development initiatives with at-risk youth, underserved school children, marginalized adults and incarcerated women. Laura’s additional collaborative facilitation work brings her into several BC schools, leading cross-curricular Artist in the Classroom projects for ArtStarts, for the Vancouver Biennale’s Big Ideas program, and as a Vancouver Opera Music Champion.
With a doctorate from McGill, she formerly served on the music faculties of the Universities of Oregon, Wisconsin and Northern Arizona. In this capacity, she mentored many of North America’s most elite arts leaders into positions with various prestigious orchestras, universities and arts non-profits.
For over a decade, Matt has found life purpose in service to others locally and around the globe, empowering over 80,000 young people, educators and adults to become better versions of themselves. His journey started early, being selected as one of the Top 100 young leaders in Ontario by the Young Social Entrepreneurs of Canada (YSEC). Since then, Matt has applied his skills as a youth leadership speaker and facilitator (traveling around North America on a motivational speaking tour), Manager of Speaker Development for ME to WE, Executive Director of Youth Programs for the Institute for Health and Human Potential; Associate Director of Learning & Performance Development at WE (formerly Free The Children)—a movement and organization that empowers people to change the world; and as an Empathy & Leadership Facilitator with TwentyOneToys.
Matt’s facilitation, coaching and mentorship abilities have transformed workplaces, applying his CultureRX & IHHP certified experience studying and working with social emotional learning, as well as promoting effective approaches to integrating Millennials into the workplace. As a thought leader on the topics of leadership, team training, effective communication and human potential development, Matt has also contributed his comprehensive knowledge back to the community within articles written for Actionable Books, Empowerment Magazine, Ten Thousand Coffees, as well as for social entrepreneurial venture, SoJo.
Aisha Sheikh is an international educator, designer, technology enthusiast, and entrepreneur. She brings over a decade of experience working in San Francisco, Toronto, London, Nairobi and Amman.
Aisha is driven to empower others. She has consulted many social impact oriented companies, including large corporates with innovation strategy, to startups and non-profits. Most recently in the Bay Area: Stanford ChangeLabs, IDEO.org, and Elefint Designs. In the Valley, she simultaneously trained and worked at the renowned student-centered school for the gifted — The Nueva School. She taught several courses through the I-Lab, pioneered two, and coached educators and administrators at the Nueva Design Thinking Institute. She also stayed involved in global communities by publishing her thought leadership, and as co-ambassador of Sandbox Global, a high-impact network of global entrepreneurs. Prior, Aisha worked in Jordan with Junior Achievement, where she advised The World Bank and UNESCO to advance students in their entrepreneurship endeavors throughout 15 Middle East countries.
Aisha pursued a Bachelors of Design at OCAD and received a Masters of Architecture at McGill University. She is a recipient of The Coaching Fellowship – executive leadership coaching for female leaders; and Singularity University's Global Solutions Program Fellow, and Ventures Incubator – focusing on exponential technologies, and building scalable companies impacting a billion people.
Jared brings a deep expertise in the tools and techniques of design thinking, critical thinking and systems thinking, drawing on his years in emerging technology platforms and solving larger cross-disciplinary problems in the digital agency space, he earned his stripes in the startup world, leading strategy and design for early media innovators. In addition to Jared’s degree in Art & Business from Trinity Western University, he is also graduate of Industrial Design from Emily Carr University.
As a Lead Facilitator of the acclaimed Vancouver Design Nerds, Jared has hosted creative gatherings across the city for many years in service of sparking curiosity, collaboration and generating new solutions ranging from affordable housing to mobility and public space use.
As a brand planner, digital strategist and social entrepreneur, Sarah connects trends in popular culture for some the world’s most innovative values-based brands, and non-profits, from Starbucks and lululemon to Whole Foods Market, Nike, and EA Games. As co-founder of the THNK Vancouver, the School of Creative Leadership, Sarah’s deep understanding of emerging technology, behavior, and collective action is set to creating next generation of creative leaders that will have a significant societal impact in our world.
With a background in management training, leadership coaching, improvisation acting and writing, Robert trains leaders to use storytelling as a way of moving others into action, and leads innovation workshops for corporates and NGOs. As a facilitator at Stanford University’s MediaX Global Innovation Leadership program, he helps forward-thinking executives turn challenges and crises into opportunities, and lead break-through innovation in their organizations. He is also a member of the founding faculty of THNK School of Creative Leadership. Born in Australia, educated in Holland, and with vast international experience, Robert leverages his expertise as an author of young adult fiction to help students move confidently onto the leadership stage.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Academy of Tomorrow is directed by a diverse group of creative, business and tech leaders who are committed to shaping our collective future by helping world-changing ventures and entrepreneurs scale their social and environmental impact.
Serial Entrepreneur and Investor
Lee Feldman is founder and partner of the THNK School of Creative Leadership in Vancouver. Prior to this, he founded CycleSpace; co-founded and served as Chief Experience Officer of the digital agency Blast Radius (which went multinational 10 years after its beginnings in his apartment); mentored with Rockstart; was CMO of FITMO; and was a design sales consultant for IKEA Business.
Lee has been recognized with gold and silver Clios and mentions in Communication Arts Design Annuals and Marketing Magazine’s Top 100, and has contributed to numerous global design and awards panels.
Dean, School of Entrepreneurship and Management at ShanghaiTech, and former Vice Chancellor of NYU and NYU Shanghai.
Over the course of her 20-year career, May has become a sought-after partner for companies and organizations wishing to be successful in highly competitive, global environments. She has a knack for spotting—and realizing—growth opportunities. A leader with an independent spirit and steadfast integrity, she energizes teams to think big while never losing sight of the details..
Her career highlights include:
As Chief of Staff to the partners in charge of Goldman Sachs' Fixed Income Division, May envisioned and eventually became part of the core team that built the Credit Derivative business, which has since grown into one of the firm’s largest business units.
As CEO of Fly Communications, May grew revenues in the double digits year-over-year by strategically transforming the advertising firm into the agency of choice for select private-equity fund portfolio companies.
As Vice Chancellor of NYU Strategic Initiatives in Asia, May spearheaded the creation and implementation of NYU Shanghai, the first integrated western higher education program in China.
In 2014, May joined ShanghaiTech University as Dean of School of Entrepreneurship and Management. She has a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from NYU School of Law.
Executive Creative Director of the Google Creative Lab and one of the world’s most influential creative leaders.
He is also a passionate advocate for young leaders and innovators, as evidenced by his leading role in Google Science Fair, which invites youth to put their ideas forward to change the world. He’s also been central to the wildly successful YouTube Space Lab Channel and launch video (with 50 million chanel views to date), which encouraged teens worldwide to send their science experiments to space in partnership with NASA and judged by Stephen Hawking.
Steve has worked at some of the biggest and best creative agencies in the world—including VCCP London, Foote Cone & Belding San Francisco, WCRS Arnold Worldwide Partners in London, Modem Media UK and DDB in Vancouver. As one of the original partners and Creative Director at VCCP, he oversaw award-winning campaigns for O2, Coca-Cola and comparethemarket.com, and led the agency in creating campaigns and platforms that provide utility, content, entertainment and value to people’s lives. In his long and distinguished career, he has worked with many of the globe’s leading brands, such as Google, YouTube, Coca Cola, Levis, Microsoft, PlayStation, Apple iPhone and amazon.com.
Steve’s work has been featured in WIRED, The New York Times, Telegraph, and Wall Street Journal; he’s written columns for Adweek, Marketing, Campaign, Revolution, New Media Age, Cre@te Magazine; and he’s been interviewed by the BBC and CNBC Europe.
Director of the Center for Innovation in the Arts at Juilliard School
Edward joined the faculty of the Juilliard School in 1984 and developed many of the institution’s most innovative programs including the Arts and Education Program, the Music Technology Center, the Center for Innovation in the Arts and Beyond the Machine. In 2012 he was awarded the William Schuman Scholars Chair by the Juilliard School in recognition of his life-long contributions to arts education.
Bilous began his career in 1978 as one of the first teaching-artists at the newly created Lincoln Center Institute. He also served on the National Endowment for the Arts panel for Learning In the Arts and was the Senior Education Advisor in the creation of The Academy – A Program of the Juilliard School, Carnegie Hall and the Weil Institute.
Bilous’ creative work includes many projects that foster understanding and social awareness including Basetrack Live the documentary films Scottsboro (2001 Academy Award nominee) and Portraits of Grief – A Tribute to the Victims of the September 11th Tragedy (New York Times Television) and Forgiveness (PBS). He recently joined the creative team of SACRED a global-documentary event produced by PBS.
Other compositions include Basetrack Live, Lucid Dreams, (American Composers Orchestra) the score to The Emperor of All Maladies – a film by Ken Burns and five works for Pilobolus Dance Theater.
Bilous received his MM and DMA from the Juilliard School where he studied with Elliott Carter and Vincent Persichetti. He also studied privately with Krzysztof Penderecki.