Heather Fleming, Founder | Chief Executive Officer
Heather is a designer, an engineer, and an entrepreneur motivated by social inequality. In 2005, she led a volunteer group of engineers and designers focused on humanitarian design projects via a professional chapter of Engineers Without Borders (EWB). Three years later she co-founded Catapult Design in San Francisco to make design and technical capacity accessible to entrepreneurs and organizations working within disadvantaged communities. Heather is a Pop!Tech Social Innovation Fellow, a program aimed at high-potential young leaders with new approaches for transformational impact and a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader. She previously worked in the Silicon Valley product development consulting world and has nine years of experience working with multi-disciplinary teams to design, develop, and deliver product solutions for a diverse range of companies. Heather was also previously an Adjunct Lecturer at Stanford University in the Mechanical Engineering department and a Senior Lecturer at California College of the Arts in the Industrial Design department. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Navajo Chamber of Commerce on the Navajo Nation and chairs a committee within ASME’s Engineering for Global Development initiative. Heather has a BS in Product Design from Stanford University. Twitter: @heatherfleming
Tyler Valiquette, Founder | Chief Operations Officer
Having lived, worked, and traveled extensively in Latin America in his mid-twenties, Tyler returned to the United States in 2005 determined to devote the rest of his career to tackling the problems of human inequality and environmental degradation that had played such a major role in his travels. In 2007 he joined Engineers Without Borders and became very active in the San Francisco Professionals Chapter, particularly the Appropriate Technology Design Team where he led the development of a small wind turbine for rural Guatemala. Inspired by the role that technology can play in addressing social injustice and the ongoing global environmental crisis, he was one of the founders of Catapult Design in San Francisco, a firm using design and engineering to alleviate poverty within disadvantaged communities. Tyler has worked both as an industrial mechanical engineer for Chevron and as a project manager for a premier commercial construction company in San Francisco. He has his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Idaho.
David Kaisel | Program Director
With degrees in design, business administration and public health, David specializes in building cross-disciplinary collaborations involving product design, global health, and market-based solutions. Driven by a fascination for how the design of products and services influence behavior, David’s work focuses on understanding users to harness that influence to improve health and welfare, especially in marginalized communities.David’s experience ranges from the “traditional”- designing Italian office chairs, client management for a Silicon Valley product design consultancy and developing product strategy for a “lab-on-a-chip” device- to more experimental use of design process coordinating missions for Doctors Without Borders, forecasting disruptive global health innovations at the Institute for the Future, and cribbing UXR tools from the software world to unpack demand, adoption, and abandonment of proposed solutions for household water treatment and urban community sanitation. Work, and a passion for indigenous food and music, have led to extended residencies in Italy, England, Brazil, Colombia, Angola and Central America. When not at his desk, David can be found rowing on Lake Merritt or under his 4WD VW camper.
Noel Wilson | Lead Designer
Noel is a Lead Designer for Catapult Design in San Francisco, a product and process design firm developing tools to alleviate poverty within disadvantaged communities. An Industrial Designer by training, Noel previously worked in rapid prototyping, playground design, education, and bicycle empowerment. Prior to Catapult, Noel spent several years living in Malawi coordinating the R&D Department at Africycle and working with ETF Education Center in Sadzi. He works in the social empowerment sphere because he wants to have a hand in shaping our future. He hails from Adelaide, Australia, but has a healthy travel bug nibbling on him and a love of diversity. Noel has a Bachelors of Industrial Design with Honors and a BA in Professional Writing and Communication from the University of South Australia & Carlton University Ottawa, Canada.
Karin Carter | Product Designer
Karin is a designer and educator with diverse expertise as each. As an in-house designer, she worked on the advanced innovation teams at Nike and The North Face–working hands-on with global partners to research, invent, and develop new technologies for athletic gear. As a design consultant, she helps multinationals and start-ups alike in getting their ideas to market. As an independent designer, she has experience developing micro enterprises in the US, Ecuador, Thailand, and Mexico. As an educator, Karin taught Sustainable Design at Stanford University in California, Design Thinking at The African Leadership Academy in Johannesburg, and bilingual primary education both in the Denver and Mexican public school systems. These experiences have taught her to value cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural problem solving, indigenous knowledge, resourceful ingenuity, and courage when trying something new. Karin holds a BA in Economics from University of Colorado and a MS from the Joint Program in Design at Stanford University, where she also worked in the Product Realization Lab. Her green innovations have been awarded first prize in the California Clean Tech Open and featured in Newsweek.
Dr. Charlie Sellers | Technology Specialist
Combining a background in materials and processes with manufacturing management methods, Charlie serves as Technology Specialist for Catapult Design in San Francisco. Catapult is a product and process design firm developing tools to alleviate poverty within disadvantaged communities. His primary focus is the 3+ billion who depend on wood burning cook stoves, and the economic, health, and environmental effects this has. Charlie has devoted the past several years to implementing and testing of various fuel-efficient and indoor air pollution stoves around the world. Charlie’s skills reside in his ability to quickly assess and analyze operations and manufacturing strategy and optimize their potential. Prior to Catapult, he co-founded and served in leadership positions in various Bay Area corporations taking technologies from concept to market and has been a regular volunteer with Engineers Without Borders for six years. His passion: adapting developed world knowledge to local conditions in developing countries. Charlie received his BS in Physics from College of William and Mary and his PhD in Materials Science and Engineering from Northwestern University. Twitter: @charliesellers
Board of Directors
Executive Director, ASME
Thomas G. Loughlin, CAE, is the executive director of ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers), a not-for-profit professional organization founded in 1880 that enables collaboration, knowledge sharing and skill development across all engineering disciplines, while promoting the vital role of the engineer in society. Tom has overall responsibility for the Society’s wide-ranging technical and educational programs, finance and operations, and staff. A leader in association management with a strong track record in strategic planning and organizational assessment, Tom served as ASME deputy executive director and second assistant treasurer until taking on his current position in 2008. He also managed the ASME Engineering and Technology Enterprise area, which includes codes, standards and certification, the primary revenue producer of the worldwide organization. Before joining ASME, Tom worked as chief engineer at Securitas Lock Group, Inc., Emhart Corp., and is co-founder of Security Techniques, Inc. Tom received his B.S. in mechanical engineering from Lafayette College. He was named winner of the Keystone Award for Excellence in Membership from the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE). He holds five patents, and is a Fellow of ASME.
Senior Sustainability Design Manager, Autodesk
Interdisciplinary designer Dawn Danby, recognized by Fast Company as one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business, has spent 12 years working in sustainable design. Her design projects have ranged from a tree-covered pedestrian bridge on the US-Canada border to closed-loop manufacturing strategies and furniture design. As Sr. Sustainable Design Program Manager at Autodesk, Dawn leads the Autodesk Sustainability Workshop, which provides free, lightweight videos and resources online to teach young engineers and designers the principles and practice of sustainable design. Dawn co-authored Worldchanging: A User’s Guide to the 21st Century. She speaks regularly at events such as TEDGlobal. She is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and was named a Rising Talent by the Women’s Forum for Economy and Society. Dawn & her work have been covered in Metropolis, Fast Company, The Atlantic, Azure, Core77 and the BBC. She has done dozens of media briefings and interviews and has written for Worldchanging, Fast Company, Develop3D and Machine Design. She has an industrial design degree from the Rhode Island School of Design and an MBA in Sustainable Business from the Bainbridge Graduate Institute.
Catherine Howard Lovazzano
Senior Manager, Consumer Trends and Foresight, Chrysler LLC
In her current position, Catherine leads a hybrid team of social scientists, engineers, and designers in the discovery and understanding of macro forces that shape the future of human mobility. As an anthropologist, strategist and designer, she brings expertise in human behavior and attitudinal insight to inform the development of new and exciting experiences, products, and services. She recently contributed her expertise to a project on financial services for coffee farmers in Mexico with the Institute for Money, Technology, and Financial Inclusion at UC Irvine. She was previously a senior associate at growth strategy firm Jump Associates, researcher for Wired Magazine, and a documentary film producer. She is a frequent lecturer on design research methods for Stanford, CCA, and UC Berkeley. She holds a M.Sc. in Material Anthropology from the University of Oxford, focused on photography and indigenous self-representation, and a BA in Anthropology from UCLA. When not exploring the latest cultural trends, Catherine is a competitive open-water rower and plays bass in an indie rock band.
VP Interactive Planet Green, Discovery Communications Founder, Treehugger.com
Alternately described as serial entrepreneur, do-gooder and designer, Graham Hill certainly enjoys variety although now finds this future happily confined to the social entrepreneurship arena. Hill and the TreeHugger.com team recently joined the Discovery Communications family of networks as part of its Planet Green multi-platform, global environmental initiative. Besides this, he owns a product business that sells a New York souvenir he designed a few years ago, available in 175 stores including MOMA. Graham has a Bachelor’s of Architecture with distinction from Carleton University in Ottawa and did advanced studies in Industrial Design at E.C.I.A.D, Vancouver. Graham has lived all over the world and his guiltiest sin is air travel (offset of course). He speaks English, French, German and Spanish and is addicted to squash.
Strategy Operation, ServiceSource International
Hristo Gyoshev is a strategist with broad interest in business, technology, and social change. He served on Catapult Design’s Board of Directors in 2011 and 2012. Prior to his current role at ServiceSource, Hristo was a member of the corporate strategy team supporting the CEO of Yahoo! Inc., and also worked on products strategy across Yahoo!’s portfolio of web properties, and on negotiating and planning for large corporate partnerships. Earlier in his career, Hristo was a management consultant with Oliver Wyman, one of the leading global strategy and operations consulting firms, where he advised executive management at Fortune 500’s on opportunity assessment, growth strategy development, and operations improvement. Hristo holds a B.S. in Computer Science & Mathematics and Economics from Yale University. He lives in San Francisco with his wife and enjoys puzzle hunts, rollerblading, and sailing.
Elevate Design Consulting, Principal
Brian Lamb is a visionary business and design leader at Elevate Design Consulting. He has been a hands-on, multi-disciplinary Director and consultant for 10 years in Silicon Valley at D2M, a technology-oriented product design and development firm. He has worked with over 30 Silicon Valley startups in such wide ranging sectors as consumer electronics, medical, biotech and industrial. He has consulted on the development of new products for leading companies such as HDTV technologies with Intel and Texas Instruments; drug delivery devices with Johnson and Johnson internal ventures, power tools and safety equipment for Black & Decker and many more. Brian has adjunct lectured at Stanford University in their foundational design class Introduction to Visual Thinking, and coached students in the Mechanical Engineering, Product Design and d.School program classes. Brian has an MSME from Stanford University, a BSME from the University of New Hampshire and grew up in Rochester, New York.
Salesforce, Art Director
Lauren Peters began her work with Catapult Design in early 2009, contributing to organizational development on a volunteer basis. Professionally, she is an art director at Signal to Noise, a digital ad agency in San Francisco. Her love new ideas and telling the world about them began after receiving a Masters in Branding from VCU Brandcenter in 2006. Prior to Signal to Noise, Lauren was an art director at Agency.com and Hogshead Media. She has degrees in Graphic Design and Journalism from the University of Missouri.
Gary Zieff co-founded dissigno, an emerging markets project development company in 2006 with business partner Dave Williams. Since dissigno’s inception he has led project development, balancing technical, commercial and marketing skills. He supports primary research into social impact and enterprise development, develops business strategy, and creates partnerships with the private sector, NGOs, government groups, and local communities. Gary oversaw the social business and marketing plan for a renewable powered refrigerator that was a finalist in the William James Foundation Business Plan Competition, Business in Development Competition, and Global Social Venture Competition. In 2008 dissigno won a World Bank Lighting African Development Marketplace grant to develop LED lighting solutions for Tanzania. Gary has extensive developing world experience in Haiti and India. He initiated, negotiated partnerships for, and enabled the launch of the pilot project for Pedal Power – Haiti. He is also a strong believer in mentorship programs, having personally mentored interns from Stanford, UNC Chapel Hill and University of California at Berkeley.
Manna Energy Limited and Asst Professor at Portland State University
Evan A. Thomas, Ph.D., P.E., is an Assistant Professor and Director of the SWEET (Sustainable Water, Energy and Environmental Technologies) Laboratory at Portland State University. Evan’s research and teaching interests include developing sustainable life support systems for spacecraft and the developing world. Evan has professional experience working in government, industry, non-profits and academia. Evan holds a Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering Sciences from the University of Colorado at Boulder and is a registered P.E. in Environmental Engineering in the State of Texas. Evan is also a social enterprise executive and sustainable development engineer, designing and managing appropriate technology programs in developing communities since 2002. Evan has worked in Nepal, Rwanda, Kenya, Mexico and Afghanistan with Engineers Without Borders-USA and, since 2007, as the founding Executive Vice President of Manna Energy Limited. Manna is a social enterprise, installing water treatment, biogas and fuel briquetting technologies in Rwanda, Kenya and Afghanistan, funding these ventures, in part, and as the first organization to claim United Nations carbon credits for the treatment of drinking water. Prior to joining PSU, Evan worked as a civil servant at the NASA-Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas for six years. At NASA, Evan was a principal investigator and project manager in the Life Support and Habitability Systems Branch working on concepts for sustainable Moon and Mars spacecraft. These included microgravity fluid management technologies and water recovery systems spanning the range of technology readiness from research and concept development through operational spacecraft hardware flying on the Space Shuttle and International Space Station.
Otherlab, Interaction and Product Design
Nathalie Collins is a designer and innovator who has worked with businesses ranging from non-profit startups to large corporations to introduce human-centered products & services to their markets. Her work with Nuru International to develop a low-cost sanitation solution in rural Kenya sparked an ongoing passion for applying design to issues of global inequality. She has since returned to Kenya to develop a mobile technology approach to assessing community poverty and now consults in healthcare in the US to tackle vital problems closer to home. Prior to these endeavors, Nathalie spent several years designing the user experiences of Microsoft’s Hotmail and PowerPoint software. Nathalie has lectured at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and facilitated executive workshops at the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design. She holds a master’s degree in Product Design from Stanford University and an undergraduate degree in Computer Engineering & Computer Science from the University of Southern California.
Solutions Architect and Program Manager
Joseph is a seasoned Program Manager and Solutions Architect with a passion for designing and implementing sustainable technology-driven solutions to persistent problems in community development. Previously Joseph designed and implemented a virtual research environment to improve decision support in biomedical research and venture financing through literature-based discovery. He has over 15 years discovering and implementing innovative solutions in food security, business development, institutional development, energy management, and education for developing economies. This includes four years supervising financial management for economic and technology development programs in Southeastern Africa and West Africa, and five years managing economic development program in Sierra Leone, West Africa. Joseph resides in Vanderwagen, NM and is currently designing and implementing cloud computing solutions for education and service delivery.