Board of Directors

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Mark Shieh · President

Mark is the co-founder of Take Root, a research-driven real estate company in Vancouver, Canada. Passionately curious about people and places, he started out as a Disney Imagineer and indulged a childhood dream to be a Disney character. Later, he worked as the Director of Research at ECCO Design in New York. Mark has a BS in Civil Engineering and an MS in Engineering Management, both from Stanford University. He was the research assistant to Sara Little Turnbull at the Process of Change Lab at Stanford from 1997 to 1998. He was also a Mayfield Entrepreneurship Fellow. He has served on the board of Vancouver Heritage Foundation, Vancouver City Planning Commission, and Vancouver Contemporary Art Gallery.
He currently serves on the board of Building Opportunities
with Business.

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Larry Eisenbach · Secretary

Larry has been the Principal and Founder of Deadline Design Consultancy, LLC, in Portland, Oregon since 2012, offering creative project management services for large corporations, startups and independent designers. His professional background is in product/industrial design and he has experience in exhibit design, consumer and commercial product design, design management, large scale project facilitation, collegiate creativity course development and instruction, and business development. During a 20+ year career at NIKE he designed Footwear, directed a global design organization, lead global technology integration projects in CAD/CAM, lead seminal sustainable product initiatives, assessed and recommended solutions for IP loss, directed a Women’s Global Product R&D Team, and facilitated advanced concept integration.

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Paula Rees · Treasurer

Paula is the principal of Foreseer, a Seattle-based, multi-disciplinary design firm founded in 1979. She has designed major destinations for public institutions and private companies from Los Angeles to Barcelona, including mixed-use developments, historic districts, civic parks, retail stores, public markets and transit environments. This work involves managing very large collaborative teams of designers, artists, and fabricators. Paula’s expertise makes her a highly desired speaker and writer. She has enjoyed guest teaching at universities around the world. Her award-winning work is featured in many publications on experiential design and urban identities. She has served on the executive board of numerous 501(c)(3) educational foundations, including an early founding member of Women in Design, and a past president of the International Society for Experiential Graphic Design (SEGD).


Amy Chen

Amy is a designer and entrepreneur. She co-founded KidDesign,
a children’s wear design studio and created The Leaf Storm, a fine tea store in New York City. In addition to studying merchandising at Central Washington University and apparel design at the Fashion Institute of Technology, Amy earned an MBA in 1993 from the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley. At the time, the business school lacked a design perspective. Amy fixed that by launching the first course of its kind at Haas to teach future managers about design.
As Director of the Process of Change Lab at Stanford, Sara Little Turnbull was an invited guest speaker and powerful design and business advocate. Throughout the years, students have unanimously responded that she changed their world view as managers and humans. In a cherished handwritten note, Sara wrote, “I know you can do anything/everything you want to do!”  Her encouragement continues to inspire. In joining the Center for Design Institute Board of Directors, she looks forward to advancing Sara’s influential legacy.

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Linda Kuo

Linda is the Director of Design and Product Development at Pottery Barn Kids & Teen. She is a passionate drawer, writer, and maker of things. During her 15+ years creative adventure with Williams-Sonoma Inc., she bridges high concept and mass production, working with artisans around the world to design a wide spectrum of products from storage solutions for different living spaces, wall organization system, to heirloom toys and school essentials across multiple brands. Linda has a BFA from Parsons School of Design New York and an MFA from Stanford University. Sara Little Turnbull mentored Linda and her team for the IDMM project at Stanford. Linda carries Sara’s words of wisdom ‘She who seeks orders creates elegant designs’ in her heart and practices it in the field every day.

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Cynthia Benjamin

Cynthia has over 20 years’ experience integrating innovation practice, design thinking tools and strategic insight for social impact across a wide variety of organizations. She is currently CEO of a digital health start-up serving seniors with dementia. She has been the Director of Design and Innovation at the Thrive Foundation for Youth, bringing creativity to programs for disadvantaged youth, and Director of Innovation at IMS Health, leading initiatives in big data and healthcare analytics. Cynthia has also been a Management Consultant at Strategic Decisions Group, a Design Engineer at IDEO, and founder and designer of children’s products at Samson-McCann. Cynthia is a lecturer in Design at Stanford, teaching “Designing for Impact” and “Forecasting for Innovators.” She received her MBA from the Haas School of Business at UC, Berkeley and holds an MS and BS in Mechanical Engineering/Product Design from Stanford. 

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Kathy Long Holland   

Kathy is a specialist in the development and launching of new products, strategies and business models. She was at Nike for 7 years as the Divisional Head of New Products and Markets. She founded her consultancy, LongSherpa Design, specializing in new businesses and business transitions, in 1987. She has worked with start-up entrepreneurs, cooperatives, corporate environments, and not-for-profit organizations and she co-founded ECO-D/OMBI,
a not-for-profit publicly funded corporation providing business development and advisory services to innovative enterprises. Kathy has lectured at Stanford, The School for Entrepreneurial Leadership at UC Berkeley, the University of Oregon Graduate School of Business and Oregon Health Sciences University. She has presented leadership and entrepreneurship training for the U.S. State Department in the Middle East and currently facilitates an executive CEO forum for women-owned companies. Ms. Long Holland serves on numerous Boards of Directors, both for-profit and non-profit.


Walter M. Bortz II, M.D.

Dr. Bortz is a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine and recognized as one of America’s most distinguished scientific experts on aging and longevity.
Dr. Bortz’s research has focused on the importance of physical exercise. Dr. Bortz has won many prestigious awards including the Presidential Award (2002). He is past co-chairman of the American Medical Association’s Task Force on Aging, former President of The American Geriatric Society, and Chairman of the Medical Advisory Board for the Diabetes Research and Wellness Foundation. He has written 150 articles for scientific research publications and has authored many books including: We Live Too Short and Die Too Long, and Dare to be 100.