Sebastian Alvarado is a postdoctoral fellow in the Dept. of Biology at Stanford, with a research focus on epigenetics, as well as co-founder of the video game science consultancy group, Thwacke! Consulting. Thwacke offers scientific insight from a diversity of disciplines to aid in narrative design, world building, and ultimately creating believable content for the video game industry. Thwacke has consulted on video games including Wasteland 2 and Outlast.
Dr. Joanne Budzien is an Assistant Professor of Physics at MacMurray College. Dr. Budzien's research is in materials science simulation and she has been at Frostburg State University, the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, Sandia National Laboratories, and what is now the Idaho National Laboratory. In addition to teaching undergraduate physics, chemistry, engineering, and mathematics, Dr. Budzien has also taught physical science to elementary education majors. A fan of sci-fi movies, television, and, of course, science, Dr. Budzien’s current big project is a seminar series using movie clips to look at “everyday” science with general audiences.
James Kakalios is a physic professor at the University of Minnesota, lecturer, and author of the books, The Physics of Superheroes, and the Amazing Story of Quantum Mechanics, which use science fiction, or speculative science, as a means to examine real-world science. Kakalios consulted on the Hollywood films Watchmen and Amazing Spider-Man.
Jeff Kleiser is president and co-founder of the visual effects studio Synthespian Studios. His pioneering work in computer animation has spanned the history of the medium. He has contributed to films with groundbreaking visual effects including Tron, Stargate, Judge Dredd, Mortal Kombat Annihilation, X-Men, and X2, X-Men, the Last Stand, The One, Exorcist The Beginning, Son of the Mask , Fantastic Four, Scary Movie 4, Ra One and Robocop. Kleiser serves on the board of the Visual Effects Society, the Williamstown Film Festival, and is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Joanne Manaster is a faculty lecturer teaching online biology courses for the Master of Science Teaching-Biology program at the School of Integrative Biology at the University of Illinois, and has taught lab courses in Bioengineering and Cell and Developmental Biology departments. A tireless science education and communication advocate, Joanne enjoys her activity on social media and also has a blog, JoanneLovesScience, and blogs and hosts online discussions for Scientific American. Her latest venture encourages science reading through Google Hangouts on Air, called Read Science! Joanne is passionate about helping to make science accessible and fun for students of all ages.
Steven Schlozman, M.D. is an assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and a staff child and adult psychiatrist at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA. He is also the co-director of Medical Student Education in Psychiatry for Harvard Medical School. His first novel, The Zombie Autopsies has been optioned by George Romero for adaptation to film. Dr. Schlozman's zombie curriculum has been adapted by Texas Instruments as part of an innovative STEM educational program STEM Behind Hollywood.
Steve Wolf has been producing film, TV and live events for 25 years. He is the President of Special FX International, and founder of Science in the Movies Inc., an organization that teaches physics and chemistry through stunt demonstrations. His feature film work includes: The Firm, 3 Men and a Baby, Do the Right Thing, The Last Boy Scout, The Client, The Jungle Book, Hustle & Flow and Cast Away.