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Visiting Faculty

The Master of Arts in Social Design (MASD) program utilizes a diverse network of visiting designers and faculty who serve as advisors to the program. This network includes but is not limited to the following:

Note: The network evolves and changes over time and not all advisors will be available or utilized each semester.

2012-14 Faculty Advisors

Elaine Asal is trained as an architect and is currently an Architectural Designer at Gensler. Her approach to problem solving and design-thinking is driven by balancing visionary ideals with realistic measures. She believes that positive impact comes from thoughtful, informed and tangible solutions, achieved when passionate people come together around a shared narrative and common goals. She is a visual communicator that excels at organizational development and strategic planning. Elaine received her Bachelor of Architecture in 2004 from the University of Oklahoma and is currently working for Gensler, a global design, planning, and strategic consulting firm. Elaine is leading an office initiative to incorporate social responsibility and community-driven design into architecture and planning projects throughout Baltimore City. She helped launch gServe, a corporate social responsibility program for Gensler and currently serves on the firmwide steering committee.

She also works with the AIA Baltimore Lecture Series, developing the overall theme and speakers as well managing the graphics for the last seven years. She is on the National Board for the Network of Arab-American Professionals, leading the local Baltimore chapter and managing the national re-brand effort. A Baltimore resident for eight years, Elaine was raised in Oklahoma City and speaks English and Arabic.

John Bielenberg is Executive Producer at Future Partners. He delights in helping people find the courage and sense of humor to bring their stories, ideas, and ingenuity out into the world—the wilder and crazier, the better. He has won more than 250 design awards in his career, including the 2013 AIGA Gold Medal for leadership in the design for good movement. He became an AIGA Fellow in 2008. The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art has acquired six of his design projects, and staged a solo exhibition of his work in 2000. In 2009, John was awarded the Washington University Skandalaris Award for Design Entrepreneurship and went on to receive an honorary doctorate degree from Maryland Institute College of Art. He was also awarded the 2011 NASAD Citation for outstanding work and overall impact in the fields of art and design, as an author, educator, social activist, and designer. He has been featured in the ID 50 and teaches at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco.

In 2003, John created Project M, an immersive program designed to inspire and educate young designers, writers, photographers, and filmmakers by proving that their work—especially their wrongest thinking—can have significant impact on communities. Project M has developed projects in Alabama, Baltimore, Connecticut, Costa Rica, Detroit, Germany, Ghana, Iceland, Maine, Minneapolis, and New Orleans.

Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson is a journalist, author, and editor whose articles, essays, and fiction have appeared or are forthcoming in The New York Times Magazine, The New York Times, Slate, The Baltimore Sun,The Atlantic cities blog, Conde Nast Traveler, Metropolis, and Little Patuxent Review, among others. She is a 2013 recipient of the Individual Artist Award in Fiction from the Maryland State Arts Council and was accepted into the 2013 Kenyon Review Writers Workshop. Her short story “The Hunt” was a semi-finalist for the 2013 Raymond Carver Short Fiction Contest. She was also accepted into the 2013 Kenyon Review Writers Workshop. Dickinson’s nonfiction has earned awards from the Society of Professional Journalists and the 2011 Roger D. Redden Award from the Baltimore Architecture Foundation for achievement in the field of architecture.

Dickinson is a contributing editor at Architect and Architectural Lighting magazines and has served as guest editor for publications like Fast Company, Johns Hopkins Magazine and Next City. She was also the editor-in-chief of Urbanite magazine in Baltimore for three years. She is an adjunct faculty member at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) where she teaches graduate level writing.

Greg Galle is Executive Producer at Future Partners. Greg has been exploring how design improves lives through story, experience, visualization, user interface, and ingenuity for more than 27 years. He has been nationally recognized with awards from The Clio Awards, Communication Arts Magazine, Critique Magazine, ID Magazine, The NY Art Directors Club, New York Arts Festival, and Western Art Directors Club, among others. The Los Angeles Museum of Modern Art has acquired his Suicide Book for their permanent Book Arts collection. Greg serves as a Fuse Corps Advisor, and as a Project M advisor. He is also a Board Member Emeritus on the board of Not For Sale, the campaign to end slavery and human trafficking within our lifetime.

Greg has also collaborated on and been cited in numerous books on design, communication, and business strategy, including The Brand Gap: How To Bridge The Distance Between Business Strategy and Design by Marty Neumeier, Why Business People Speak Like Idiots: A Bullfighter’s Guide by Brian Fugere, and Mass Career Customization: Aligning The Workplace with Today’s Nontraditional Workforce and The Corporate Lattice: Achieving High Performance in the Changing World of Work by Cathleen Benko and Molly Anderson.

M. A. Greenstein, PhD, aka "Dr. G" is an internationally recognized author, innovation strategist and thought leader in "whole-brain" learning systems. Dr. G. is wild about advancing the art & neuroscience of design thinking to impact the greater good. As the founder and CEO of GGI, a neuroconsulting / design thinking institute, Dr. G. leads a team that generates “brain smart/ mind awake” content for e-learning, training projects and offline neuroconsulting workshops and conferences for “youth” and “Military Vet” focused business and orgs in education, media and health working in the US, Asia and South America. A former Asia Pacific researcher of art and design cultures and a certified meditation teacher, Dr. G. is also an adjunct Assoc Prof at Art Center College of Design and thrilled to join the team of faculty advisors for the MICA Social Design Program. To learn more about Dr. G and GGI go to

Myra Margolin is a community psychologist specializing in community-based media production. She has worked in a wide range of settings helping people create media about their lives and communities. She recently led photography workshops for women in rural South India and has previously worked in Brazil and Rwanda. In the US, Myra works primarily with young people, including incarcerated youth. At MASD, Myra teaches key community psychology concepts—including theories of empowerment and social change—to enable the students to develop effective, well-conceptualized projects that truly promote social justice. Her films have been shown on PBS and at film festivals throughout the U.S.

Myra is currently completing her doctoral studies, received an MA in Community Psychology from the University of Illinois and holds a BFA in film and video production from New York University.

Henry Posko has been a social entrepreneur for over 30 years as CEO of Humanim. Serving 2000 individuals annually, Humanim’s core mission is creating opportunities for economic independence for those who have encountered obstacles to work. Through several social enterprises, individuals with disabilities, criminal backgrounds and those in poverty comprise Humanim staff and persons served.

Henry has presented Humanim’s work on social impact both nationally and internationally. In 2009 he joined a small group of experts on a poverty and workforce development exchange mission throughout Israel. In 2011 he presented at the Social Enterprise World Summit in Johannesburg on “Social Enterprise as a means of Job Creation” and in Los Angeles on “Social Impact in Disinvested Neighborhoods” at the Non-profit Centers Network National Conference. Henry also serves on the boards of the Horizon Foundation and Revere Bank.

David H. Sachs is a leadership development innovator, manager, teacher and consultant. He is the Executive Director of The Leadership, the highly-regarded program of the Greater Baltimore Committee for future business, civic and government leaders. Sachs has worked in leadership development for 15 years with individuals and organizations across industries, geographies and cultures.

Currently, Sachs provides strategic consulting and leadership development, design and facilitation to private, public, and non-profit organizations, including Johns Hopkins University. He also teaches in Harvard Business School Publishing Corporation's blended executive development programs.

Prior to establishing his independent consultancy in 2011, Sachs was vice president and head of corporate learning and development at T. Rowe Price. Previously, he led Harvard Business School's Executive Education as executive director and co-led the launch of The Erickson School at UMBC as the school's first vice dean. Sachs earned an MBA from Harvard Business School, a Masters in Public Administration degree from Harvard Kennedy School, and a BA in History from Amherst College.

Joshua To is a founder and managing fund principal at Hattery, where he delights in bringing talented, passionate people together to build extraordinary things across the intersection of design and technology. Joshua comes to Hattery from a Product Manager role at Google and previous experience as an entrepreneur himself. He founded BRUTE LABS in early 2006 to explore what impact a small group of passionate but fully-employed young people could have. Since its inception, the team has launched over 12 projects which include implementing clean water projects in Africa, tackling childhood obesity through a program called RUN! and distributing maps to the homeless of Santa Monica, California to help them locate services available to them.

At Google, Joshua led technology development for global email communications to advertisers, publishers and users. During his time there, he also served as a business development consultant with While still in his sophomore year of college, he founded the socially conscious clothing brand RESONANCE. By developing strategic partnerships, he created a global label that was sold in over 50 stores internationally. In 2005, Joshua was named “one of the top 15 college students in America” by Newsweek for the impact he created through thoughtful design aimed at fostering social and political awareness.

Joshua holds B.A. degrees in Design and Communication Studies from the University of California at Los Angeles.