Michael MontgomeryLecturer, UCLA Anderson
Managing Director of Space Angels Network
Chad Anderson is managing director of Space Angels Network, where he has facilitated millions of dollars of private investment into new commercial space ventures. He is also non-executive director of the UK Space Catapult where he supports the national strategy to grow the space sector in the country and is board director of WayPaver Foundation where he forwards the goal of sustainable lunar settlement. Prior to his current roles, Anderson enjoyed a successful career at JP Morgan Chase where he managed a $50-billion real estate portfolio through the Great Recession. Anderson holds an MBA from the University of Oxford.
Principal Filmmaker for VR at Google
Jessica Brillhart is the principal filmmaker for VR at Google. In 2009, she joined Google's Creative Lab where she spearheaded numerous award winning shorts and documentaries before joining the VR team in 2015. Since directing "World Tour," the first virtual reality film made with the Jump ecosystem, Brillhart has continued traveling the world, filming and experimenting, all in an effort to better understand and help inform others about this emergent medium.
Professor of Finance and Faculty Director, Impact@Anderson, UCLA Anderson School of Management
Chowdhry, professor at UCLA Anderson and faculty director, Impact@Anderson, began his teaching career at UCLA Anderson in 1988. Here he found “an opportunity to work with and learn from outstanding faculty colleagues and an ability to work with students on projects that will make a difference in the world.” His research interests are in international finance and corporate finance and strategy, topics on which he has published several papers in economic and finance journals. Microfinance, financial technology and impact investing are his recent teaching, research and applied interests.
Director and Producer
Jon Favreau began his career in the industry as an actor in the inspiring sports film "Rudy." He went on to establish himself as a writer with the acclaimed hipster comedy "Swingers." Since then, he has continued to challenge himself with a variety of eclectic projects, including "The Jungle Book," "Chef," "Iron Man" and "Iron Man 2." It was recently announced that Favreau will direct a live-action reimagining of the animated classic "The Lion King." Favreau is also currently working in the world of virtual reality. His latest project is "Gnomes & Goblins," an interactive VR experience set in the world of an enchanted forest.
Dr. Kevin Hand
Pre-Project Scientist for the Europa Lander, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (2014 Jury Member, The Rolex Awards for Enterprise)
As a key member of the Solar System Exploration Directorate at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, American astrobiologist and planetary scientist Dr. Kevin Peter Hand is driven by the desire to learn whether life exists beyond Earth. He is currently helping spearhead a project to send a spacecraft to the surface of Europa – one of Jupiter’s moons and a suspected source of life – in about 2024. Research for the mission has led Hand to Earth’s harsh extremes, from the glaciers of Mount Kilimanjaro to the valleys of Antarctica, and to explore the ocean depths. He has just returned from a two-month expedition near the North Pole. Hand served on the 2014 Rolex Awards jury.
Director and Producer
Werner Herzog is a German film director, producer, screenwriter, author, actor and opera director. Considered one of the greatest figures of the New German Cinema, he has made dozens of feature films and documentaries, directed opera and theater, and written several books. His documentary film about Antarctica, Encounters at the End of the World, was nominated for an Academy Award in 2009, and it was during the making of this film that he met Clive Oppenheimer.
VP, Special Projects at Virgin Galactic
Will Pomerantz is the vice president for special projects at Virgin Galactic. In that role, he helps extend Virgin Galactic’s business beyond suborbital space tourism, developing efforts such as the LauncherOne orbital launch vehicle for small satellites as well as suborbital research campaigns on board SpaceShipTwo. Prior to joining Virgin Galactic, he ran space prizes at the nonprofit XPRIZE Foundation, where he served as the primary author and manager of the $30-million Google Lunar XPRIZE and the $2-million Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander XCHALLENGE. Will has also worked at Brown University, the Futron Corporation,n and the United Nations, and was the co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of SpaceAlumni.com, an early social network for space professionals.
Neville Spiteri is co-founder and CEO of Wevr, a leading virtual reality studio and distributor. As one of the top software engineers and creative executives in the industry, Spiteri has been at the forefront of interactive storytelling for more than two decades. After working as a software engineer on Wavefront’s pioneering 3D-animation product, Maya, Spiteri joined James Cameron’s visual effects and production company Digital Domain as film technical director and digital effects supervisor on projects including “Apollo 13” and “Terminator 2/3D.” He then worked with Square on their animated feature “Final Fantasy,” served as producer and senior development director at Electronic Arts, and was director of product at the big data software company Greenplum (acquired by EMC, now Pivotal).
Founder of the Edible Schoolyard Project and Chez Panisse Restaurant and Café
Alice Waters is a chef, author, food activist, and the founder and owner of Chez Panisse Restaurant in Berkeley. She has been a champion of local sustainable agriculture for over four decades. In 1995 she founded the Edible Schoolyard Project, which advocates free school lunches and a sustainable food curriculum in public schools. She has been vice president of Slow Food International since 2002. She conceived and helped create the Yale Sustainable Food Project in 2003, and the Rome Sustainable Food Project at the American Academy in Rome in 2007. Her honors include election as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2007; the Harvard Medical School’s Global Environmental Citizen Award, which she shared with Kofi Annan in 2008; and her induction into the French Legion of Honor in 2010. In 2015 she was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Obama.
THE ROLEX AWARDS FOR ENTERPRISE PRESENT
Rolex Awards Laureate/Marine Conservationist
Australian marine conservationist Dr. Brad Norman is at the forefront of efforts to protect the elusive and endangered whale shark, the world’s largest fish. Norman won a 2006 Rolex Award for devising an innovative combination of citizen science and pattern recognition technology to identify and track individual whale sharks via their distinctive spots.
Photo credit: ©Rolex Awards/Violeta Jahnel Brosig
Rolex Young Laureate/Italian Geologist and Caver
Italian geologist and caver Francesco Sauro has participated in numerous expeditions to the remote tabletop mountains – tepuis -- of Venezuela and Brazil to study their dark underworld. Overcoming daunting logistical challenges, he and his team have been first to explore caves millions of years old, discovering new minerals and species that give clues to our ancient history. Sauro won a 2014 Rolex Award to expand this work.
Photo credit: ©Rolex/Bart Michiels
Rolex Young Laureate/Founder SaveLIFE Foundation
In 2008, Piyush Tewari founded the SaveLIFE Foundation to provide rapid emergency care to road accident victims in India, which suffers the world’s highest number of road crash fatalities. Since being named a Rolex Young Laureate in 2010, Tewari has reshaped the landscape of public policy across the country, advocating for vital new laws that are preventing countless lives from being lost.
Rolex Awards Laureate/Head of Swansea’s Lab for Animal Movement, Swansea University
Professor Rory Wilson, head of Swansea’s Lab for Animal Movement at Swansea University in Wales, has spent three decades inventing dozens of devices to monitor animal behavior. His Daily Diary, an electronic tag for which he won a 2006 Rolex Award, revolutionized animal tracking and has been used on more than 70 species.
Photo credit: ©Rolex Awards/Hugo Glendinning
Rolex Young Laureate/Inventor, Cardio Pad
Arthur Zang, a 28-year-old software design engineer from Cameroon, is the inventor of the Cardio Pad, believed to be Africa’s first medical tablet to help diagnose heart disease. A 2014 Rolex Young Laureate, Zang has won several major awards for his groundbreaking work, including the 2016 Africa Prize for engineering innovation.
Photo credit: ©Rolex Awards/Ambroise Tézenas
Columnist, Los Angeles Times
Patt Morrison is a longtime Times writer and columnist who has a share of two Pulitzer Prizes. Her broadcasting work has won six Emmys and 11 Golden Mikes. Her book about the Los Angeles River was a bestseller, and she was the first woman in nearly 25 years to be honored with the L.A. Press Club’s lifetime achievement award. Pink’s, the legendary Hollywood hot dog stand, named its veggie dog after her.
Assistant Managing Editor, California, LA Times
Ashley Dunn is the assistant managing editor of the Los Angeles Times and oversees the editors and reporters who cover the length and breadth of the state. The staff has won numerous awards, accolades and community recognition over the years, including Pulitzer Prizes for breaking news, features and most recently, its investigation of corruption in the city of Bell. He worked as deputy national editor from 2007 to 2011 and played a central role in the coverage of some of the biggest national stories of recent years, including the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and the 2008 election of President Obama.
Columnist, Los Angeles Times
Jonathan Gold is the restaurant critic for the Los Angeles Times. He won the Pulitzer Prize in criticism in 2007 and was a finalist again in 2011. A Los Angeles native, he began writing the Counter Intelligence column for the L.A. Weekly in 1986, wrote about death metal and gangsta rap for Rolling Stone and Spin among other places, and is delighted that he has managed to forge a career out of the professional eating of tacos.
Assistant Managing Editor, Arts & Entertainment
Mary McNamara was named assistant managing editor for arts and entertainment in September 2016. McNamara, who has worked at The Times since 1990, previously served as television critic and senior culture editor. When she won her Pulitzer for criticism in 2015, the judges cited her “savvy criticism...
An advisor and investor in early-stage companies, Montgomery is an active board member and a lecturer at the Anderson School of Business. He was co-founder and president of Montgomery & Co., LLC, a boutique investment bank focused on media and technology, from 1993 through 2013. He previously was an executive at DreamWorks and The Walt Disney Company.
Sanjay SoodProfessor of Marketing/Faculty Director of UCLA Anderson’s Center for Managing Enterprises in Media, Entertainment and Sports
Sanjay Sood, professor of marketing and faculty director of UCLA Anderson’s Center for Managing Enterprises in Media, Entertainment and Sports, teaches “Entertainment Marketing,” “Digital Marketing Strategy,” and “Entertainment Business Models.” He has served as an area editor for the Journal of Marketing and the Journal of Consumer Psychology and is a recipient of the Niedorf “Decade” and Citibank teaching awards.