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DML Competition 3 Judges

HASTAC and the MacArthur Foundation would like to thank the following finalist judges for their expertise, time, and dedication in selecting the 2010 Digital Media and Learning Competition awardees. At this stage of the process, judges evaluated all finalist applications and convened for collective review and final selection of awardees.

  • Betsy Aoki

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    Betsy Aoki is perhaps best known as Microsoft's "Blog Queen," responsible for launching Microsoft's corporate blogging efforts at and Since then, she has worked to deliver a few more community projects for Microsoft - Live QnA, a large-scale consumer question-and-answer site, and the Xbox Live Indie Games platform at, which allows developers to distribute their games for sale on the Xbox LIVE marketplace. Currently you will find her tweeting from @bing and working on social media outreach projects for An award-winning MFA poet and former Seattle Times columnist, she also founded the Seattle chapter of Webgrrls, the first Seattle chapter of Linuxchix, and was the first Web hire for

  • Bruce Caron

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    Bruce Caron is the founder and current executive director of the New Media Studio and the New Media Research Institute in Santa Barbara. Trained as a social anthropologist and an urban cultural geographer, he is skilled in a variety of multimedia authoring tools, and completed the first multimedia dissertation at UC Santa Barbara. Through the New Media Studio, he is realizing the goal of bringing new tools and skills to the public to help democratize the technological advantages of the digital revolution. Caron has been active for several years in issues of digital libraries, the use of social media in education, the role of democracy in virtual organizations, and the theory of digital media. In 2010, Caron was awarded the Martha Maiden Lifetime Achievement Award from the Federation of Earth Science Information Providers. Caron has taught at colleges and universities in Japan, and at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of California and has served as the president of the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners, the chair of the DLESE Data Access Working Group, on user working group for SEDAC (Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center) at Columbia University, and as an elected member of the NSDL Policy Committee. He is leading a public awareness action in Santa Barbara,, which proposes to paint the seven-meter elevation contour on that city's streets, to mark the vulnerability the community faces due to human induced climate change. He is the PI on a NASA ACCESS project, the Data and Information Application Layer (DIAL), which uses forefront technology to bridge Page 6 of 14 between commercial off the shelf data access/visualization software and multimedia authoring software. He is also the project director on a MacArthur Foundation funded Digital Media and Learning effort based at UC Santa Barbara. His latest novel, Junana, describes an alternative present, where a socially-networked learning game replaces formal education and pushes a cohort of teenagers onto new learning plateaus.

  • Anil Dash

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    Anil Dash is a pioneering technologist and blogger whose site at began in 1999 as one of the earliest and most influential blogs on the Internet. Dash is the founding Director of Expert Labs, an independent non-profit that creates new web technologies to help policy makers in the White House and the rest of the Federal Government tap into the expertise of the public. Dash is also the first partner in Activate, a new consulting firm that advises companies at the intersection of media, entertainment and technology. Prior to these positions, Dash was Chief Evangelist at Six Apart Ltd, where he joined as the first employee at the world's leading blogging company, and that work was preceded by roles in the newspaper and music industries. He is a recognized expert on web technology, web culture and the software industry. A frequent public speaker, Dash has delivered keynote presentations around the world about the future of social communication online, the relationship between social and traditional media, and the evolution of social web technologies for government, science and culture. Dash is regularly featured on television, radio, print and blogs including the Washington Post, Wired, MSNBC, CNN, ABC News, the BBC and NPR. His personal blog's role in popularizing web culture has been recognized in venues ranging from the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal to the Houston Chronicle, which labeled him a "legendary blogger." Dash has published over half a million words in the first decade of his blog's existence, earning a place as one of the top ten most influential people in New York City from NowPublic in 2008 and being named the second most media-connected person in technology by Forbes in 2010. Dash has had his works showcased in museums including the New Museum of Contemporary Art, and he has addressed institutions around the world including UC Berkeley, Columbia, Princeton and New York University. He is also a member of the advisory board for the Web 2.0 conference in New York City and is a United Nations Social Media Envoy in the effort to control malaria. Dash lives in New York City with his wife Alaina Browne, general manager of esteemed food community Serious Eats. Dash's personal blog can be found

  • Dale Dougherty

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    Dale Dougherty is the editor and publisher of MAKE and general manager of the Maker Media division of O'Reilly Media, Inc. Dougherty has been instrumental in many of O'Reilly's most important efforts, including founding O'Reilly Media, Inc. with Tim O'Reilly. He was the developer and publisher of Global Network Navigator (GNN), the first commercial Web site, which launched in 1993 and was sold to AOL in 1995. He was developer and publisher of Web Review, the online magazine for Web designers, and he was O'Reilly's first editor. Prior to developing MAKE, Dougherty was publisher of the O'Reilly Network and he developed the Hacks series of books. Dougherty is the author of Sed & Awk. and was a Lecturer in the School of Information Management and Systems (SIMS) at the University of California, at Berkeley from 1996 to 2000.

  • Sam Dyson

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    Sam Dyson is the Associate Director of Woodlawn Children's Promise Zone. Previously Dyson was the Interim Director of the Chicago Public School's Office of Science and the former Senior Instructional Specialist for Science, Office of Teaching and Learning. He taught physics at Walter Payton College Preparatory School from 2000 to 2009 where he developed the Honors and AP Physics C courses, taught science in South Africa in 1996, and has been a Trustee at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy since 2005. He is a 2007 Golden Apple winner and recipient of the Certificate of Distinction in Teaching from Harvard's Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning.

  • Ewan McIntosh

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    Ewan McIntosh is one of Europe's foremost experts in digital media for public services. He invests in startups on behalf of public and private investors, consults on digital media potential in communications and civic participation, and develops digital media skills in the world of education. He was a key player in setting up one of the most ambitious investment funds from a public service broadcaster in the UK, himself making the call on investing over £1m in cutting edge and high impact digital media products. He is also the founder of, the creative industries platform for the North of the UK. His understanding and application of the latest web, mobile and games technology also continues to influence policy and practice in the world of education, where his personal Page 8 of 14 passions lie. McIntosh's background is firmly in the world of education, latterly as National Adviser on Learning and Technology Futures for Learning and Teaching Scotland, the education agency responsible for curriculum development, and a member of several advisory boards, including the Channel 4 New Media Education Advisory Board. As a teacher of French and German in the high school sector and an educational technologist working with children aged 3- 18, he frequently gives talks and workshops around the world, trying to find new and better ways of using emerging technologies in education. McIntosh has also consulted for Governments around the world, and organizations including the BBC, British Council, General Teaching Council of Scotland, RM and Scottish Enterprise, advising on how social media can be harnessed for to improve learning in the organization, leadership and communication. More information and previous talks are available on his website:, and you can follow his take on current trends on his regularly updated blog:

  • Cory Ondrejka

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    Cory Ondrejka was the co-creator of Second Life, the revolutionary and award winning virtual world that has transformed how millions of people think about community, collaboration, and entrepreneurship. After Second Life, Ondrejka was a visiting professor at University of Southern California's Annenberg School of Communication. From there, Ondrejka spent 18 months driving digital strategy and cultural change at EMI Music, first as Senior Vice President for Digital Strategy, then as Executive Vice President Global Digital Marketing. Through a focus on consumer insight, technology awareness, and internal collaboration, EMI saved millions of dollars and enabled its artists to share the music experience with fans in new and innovative ways. Today Ondrejka is working on a new project, consulting on innovation, and advising early-stage startups.

  • Nichole Pinkard

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    Nichole Pinkard is a Visiting Associate Professor in the College of Computing and Digital Media at DePaul University in Chicago. She is the founder of Digital Youth Network and co-creator of Remix World, a social learning platform that connects youth's learning opportunities in school, home, and beyond. In collaboration with the Chicago Public Library, Pinkard helped found YOUmedia, a public learning space that immerses high school students in a context of traditional media – books – to make and produce new media artifacts like music, games, videos, and virtual worlds. Pinkard is a recipient of the Jan Hawkins Award for Early Career Contributions to Humanistic Research and Scholarship in Learning Technologies, an NSF Early CAREER Fellowship, and a grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation for research on how digital media affects literacy. She serves on the Advisory Board of the Joan Ganz Cooney Center and on the National Advisory Committee for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Health Games Research program. She holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Stanford University, an M.S. in Computer Science from Northwestern University, and a Ph.D. in Learning Sciences from Northwestern University. Her current scholarly interests include the design and use of pedagogical-based social networks, new media literacy learning outcomes, and ecological models of learning.

  • Aza Raskin

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    Aza Raskin is currently the Creative Lead for Firefox. Previously he was Head of User Experience for Mozilla Labs. Raskin gave his first talk on user interface at age 10 and got hooked. At 17, he was talking and consulting internationally; at 19, he coauthored a physics textbook because he was too young to buy alcohol; at 21, he started drinking alcohol and co-founded Humanized. Two years later, Raskin founded, a minimalist music search engine that had over a million song plays in its first week. In another life, Raskin has done Dark Matter research at both Tokyo University and the University of Chicago, from where he graduated with honors in math and physics.

  • Craig Wacker

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    Craig Wacker is a Program Officer in Digital Media & Learning, a strategy of the Program on Human & Community Development. Before joining the MacArthur Foundation, Wacker worked as an analyst in the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in Washington, DC, focusing on K-12 education policy. He has also served as a Congressional Fellow on Senator Edward Kennedy's staff, as a Research Associate at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and on secondment to the World Bank Institute (WBI) of the World Bank Group. Wacker received his Bachelors degree in History from Grinnell College and his Masters in Public Affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs of the University of Texas at Austin.

  • S. Craig Watkins

    Picture of S. Craig Watkins

    S. Craig Watkins has been researching young people's media behaviors for more than ten years. He teaches in the departments of Radio- Television-Film and Sociology and the Center for African and African American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. His new book, The Young and the Digital: What the Migration to Social Network Sites, Games, and Anytime, Anywhere Media Means for Our Future (Beacon 2009), is based on survey research, in-depth interviews, and fieldwork with teens, young twenty-somethings, teachers, parents, and technology advocates. While writing this book Watkins fully immersed himself in what he calls the "digital trenches," to see up close how young people learn, play, bond, communicate, and engage in civic life in the digital age. Watkins has also explored the intersections between race, youth, hip hop, and digital media. This work, for example, considers the politics of music production and remix tapes, the rise of hip hop communities on line, and the influence of the hip hop lifestyle in black youth's use of social and mobile media. Watkins participated in the MacArthur Foundation Series on Youth, Digital Media and Learning. His work on this groundbreaking project focused on race, learning, and the growing culture of gaming. He has been invited to be a Research Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (Stanford). Currently, Watkins is launching a new digital media research initiative that focuses on the use and evolution of social media platforms. For updates on these and other projects visit

  • Connie M. Yowell

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    Connie M. Yowell is the Director of Education in the MacArthur Foundation's Program on Human and Community Development. In this role, she focuses on grants relating to public education, and on the implications for education of young people's use of digital media. Prior to joining the Foundation, Yowell was an Associate Professor in the School of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where her work included the study of reasons why Latino youth drop out of high school. Previously she worked as a Policy Analyst in the Office of Policy and Planning of the U.S. Department of Education. Before that, Yowell was a Research Assistant at the University of California at San Francisco and at Stanford University. Yowell earned her bachelor's degree from Yale and her Ph.D. from Stanford University.