Creative Technology Week is the brainchild of Isabel Walcott Draves. Isabel is a lifelong champion at bringing disparate groups together around a common cause and building new organizations from the ground up. She specializes in big-picture “what’s next” thinking, and in implementing plans from the brainstorm stage to finished product. Since 2009 Isabel has run the monthly speaker salon Leaders in Software and Art and the LISA conferences, bringing together an elite group of cutting edge thinkers who work at the intersection of art and technology. Prior to LISA, Isabel founded the Salontrepreneur dinner series, which she ran from 2001-2005. Working for well over a decade as a strategic consultant in the Internet industry, Isabel has helped dozens of early-stage CEOs get companies off the ground on multiple fronts: Strategy, Funding, Marketing, Operations and Recruiting. Her practice has included stints at Linden Lab (Second Life), Bertelsmann (Arvato) and Gartner (The Research Board) and advising founders in spaces such as word of mouth marketing, crowdsourcing, Internet identity, Internet security, online video, wikis, green e-commerce, tech recruiting and financial management.
As one of the first female CEOs of the first wave of Internet companies in the 1990’s, Isabel spoke on stages at tech and marketing conferences across the country and was a pioneer in many- to-many Internet communication, Internet start-up culture and online reviews. She started the first user-generated website for teenage girls, SmartGirl, in 1996 and was CEO of the start-up for 5 years before its acquisition by the Institute for Research on Women and Gender at the University of Michigan, where it was housed for 14 years until being decommissioned in 2015. Prior to SmartGirl, Isabel was the business manager of one of the first web/interactive design firms in NYC and the Director of Finance and Strategy of Teach For America. Isabel has a master’s degree in Communications, Computing and Electronics from Teacher’s College at Columbia University and an undergraduate degree in Literature from Harvard University. She is married to the world- famous software artist Scott Draves, founder of the Electric Sheep.