The ‘Nifty Fifty (times 4)’, a program of Science Spark, presented by InfoComm International, are a group of 200 noted science and engineering professionals who will fan out across the Washington, D.C. area in the 2014-2015 school year to speak about their work and careers at various middle and high schools.
Meet Nifty Fifty Speaker Dr. Dayna Baumeister
Co-founder and Keystone of Biomimicry 3.8, Dr. Dayna Baumeister's fascination with the natural world began with daily forays into the woods and mountains of Colorado, her childhood home. As an adult, nature has continued to inform her personal and professional endeavors.
Dayna received her Bachelors of Science degree in marine biology from New College in Sarasota, Florida. And after several years exploring the intricate relationships of coral reefs, she turned in her wetsuit and headed back to the mountains to later earn a Masters of Science degree in resource conservation, and her PhD in organismic biology and ecology from The University of Montana in Missoula, specializing in the dynamics of positive interactions among animal and plant life.
With a background in biology, a devotion to applied natural history, and a passion for sharing the wonders of nature with others, Dayna has worked in the field of biomimicry (an emerging field that emulates forms, processes and systems from nature to help solve complex human problems in science and engineering) with business partner Janine Benyus since 1998 as a business catalyst, educator, researcher, and design consultant. Together they founded the Biomimicry Guild consulting practice, The Biomimicry Institute 501c3, and most recently, Biomimicry 3.8, a B-Corp social enterprise and consulting firm that provides innovative solutions to clients and trains, certifies, and connects biomimicry professionals worldwide.
In her role as Biologist at the Design Table, Dayna has helped more than 100 companies consult the natural world for elegant and sustainable design solutions, including Nike, Interface, General Mills, Boeing, Herman-Miller, Kohler, Seventh Generation and Procter & Gamble. She is best known for her engaging ability to empower others to incorporate Life's Principles and strategies into every aspect of their work. Dayna is a natural systems thinker and brings a unique perspective to her work to help others see nature as model, measure, and mentor.
To meet the growing demand for more professional training, in 2008, Dayna designed and taught the world's first Biomimicry Professional Certification Program, a two-year master-level course for designers, business people, biologists, and engineers with participants from all over the globe, a program which she continues to teach. This program and the 8-month long Biomimicry Specialist program are soon to be offered through Arizona State University as a Master's degree and graduate certificate respectively.
Graduates of her programs are applying biomimicry in their work in different settings and places including Fortune 500 corporations, the EPA, South Africa, Germany, The Netherlands, Columbia, Chile, Egypt, Mexico, Turkey, among many other countries, as well as all over the U.S.
Dayna is a Professor of Practice at Arizona State University, co-director of the newly forming Biomimicry Center at ASU, adjunct professor at Ontario College of Art and Design, and a Dana Meadows Fellow of the Sustainability Institute. In her spare time, she serves on the board of her local science museum, ExplorationWorks!
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