Thinking Creatively Conference
Listen, Learn, Be Inspired


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Kenneth A. Gruskin, AIA/PP/CID

Principal, Gruskin Group

Ken founded Gruskin Group™ and has over 30 years of design and architectural experience. He has a wide range of clients in the educational; commercial (specialty retail, restaurant, entertainment, real estate, medical); corporate (telecommunications, financial and pharmaceutical); and non-profit industries. Ken has also designed mixed-use projects. His work and articles have been published in numerous publications, both national and international. He has been a guest on CNN TV, Bloomberg TV & Radio, and NJ News TV. He has won many awards for his architectural work, graphic design and photography.


Margaret Newman

Margaret Newman is a Principal at Arup directing the Integrated Planning team in New York. An architect and urban designer, Margaret Newman focuses on public realm projects prioritizing design excellence and transportation. With over 25 years of experience in New York, Ms. Newman has coordinated and managed the needs of multiple stakeholders: city and state agencies, private sector and real estate industry clients, community and non-profit organizations, and design commission and landmarks. She has managed a wide range of project consultants including civil and transportation engineering, structural, MEP, acoustic, lighting, product, furniture, graphic design, site and landscape design. Prior to joining ARUP, Ms. Newman served as Chief of Staff at the New York City Department of Transportation under Mayor Bloomberg, where she directed major agency projects including the capital construction plan for Times Square, and design direction for the implementation of new protected bike lanes, bike network design including new business strategies for NYC’s bikeshare system, Citibike. With oversight for the urban design team at NYCDOT, Ms. Newman developed and wrote NYC’s first Street Design Manual which was instrumental in setting consistent design standards for the City’s streets and sidewalks. LEED BD+C certified, Ms Newman had a key role developing and implementing the city’s green infrastructure initiatives included new standards for the use of sustainable materials and LED lighting across the five boroughs. A Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, Ms. Newman was recognized for her role in changing the streets of New York.


Brooke Roderick

Brooke Roderick is a 2017 Kean University alumna and art director in New York City. Over the course of her career, she has created digital and social campaigns for Google, Starbucks, Jet Blue, and Sony. Currently, she’s working at Giant Spoon — an award-winning advertising agency recognized for pushing the boundaries of traditional advertising by designing immersive, innovative experiences.

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Rich Tu

Rich Tu is a VP of Brand Design at MTV and a member of AIGA NY's Board of Directors. Rich is a first generation Filipino-American and award-winning artist residing in Brooklyn, NY. He is a graduate of SVA's prestigious Illustration as Visual Essay program and received the “Young Guns” award from the Art Directors Club, which recognizes the world's best creatives under the age of 30. Creatively, his focus is on emerging audiences and energetic brands that benefit from an eclectic and unique point of view. Commercially, Rich's clients include The New York Times, The New Yorker, Business Week, Alfa Romeo, Bombay Sapphire, G-Shock, Nike, Converse, American Express, NPR, NorthFace Purple Label, Coca-Cola, Verizon, Skype, Fuse TV, and Hamilton The Musical, among others. Also, he has exhibited at galleries and festivals in New York, Los Angeles, Berlin, as well as the SCOPE Miami festival, during Miami’s Art Basel week. Additionally, he hosts a podcast called First Generation Burden, about immigrants within the creative industry.


Lauren Wan

As a British trained designer/artist Lauren Wan creates contemporary and sophisticated original art for today’s leading brands that cover fashion, tabletop, home furnishing, stationery and fine art. Lauren’s inspiration is mostly from her world travels and beautiful things around her. It has been documented in many of her sketchbooks from the English countryside to Normandy landscapes, the labor views of Hong Kong and street corners of New York City. The sophisticated color palette and unique creativity has attracted many world class brands: Laura Ashley, Calvin Klein, Lenox, Wedgewood, Royal Doulton, Waterford, Villeroy & Boch, Monique Lhuillier, Vera Wang, Anthropologie. Barnes & Noble, Dayspring, Crane Paper. Peter Pauper Press. Ralph Lauren, Oscar De La Renta, Vogue, Victoria’s Secret, Tommy Hilfiger, Macy’s, Garnet Hill.