Tamara Christensen and Laura DeWitt are friends who bring over 40 years of combined experience and passion to delivering creative qualitative strategy and research solutions that generate actionable insights to fuel design and innovation efforts.
Tamara Christensen is a passionate and expansive thinker who can evoke the inspiration and brilliance that lives in each of us. She is uniquely skilled with facilitation methods that enable her clients to fully participate in the learning experience while she gently guides the process. Her wit and contagious laugh occur at the moment when you least expect them and most appreciate them. Authenticity and down-to-earth smarts combine to make Tamara an agent of positive change ready to tackle her client’s most demanding challenges.
Her life experience includes a cultivated academic career that launched her into the professional world of design problem solving. Combining an immersive understanding of design research pedagogy with the practical realities of 21st century business, Tamara designs effective training, ideation, and research programs that fuel product and service design efforts. She demonstrates collaborative leadership across multiple disciplines to oversee complex projects and foster fruitful cross-functional relationships. Tamara is an innovative coach and researcher, having demonstrated her dedication to utilizing insights as creative fuel for clients including JCI, Bausch + Lomb, DPSG, Coca-Cola, Heinz, Sony, Dolby, Logitech, and VML.
With multiple degrees in design and research plus doctoral work in creative thinking and education, Tamara masterfully synthesizes a theoretical understanding of design thinking with practical application and training in a variety of business contexts. Her curious and creative spirit paired with a commitment to human-centered design fuel Tamara’s approach to the development of ideation and training experiences. An expert teacher and learner, she artfully engages all of the senses and strategically designs for a variety of learning styles and preferences to ensure that all participants feel comfortable and confident.
Tamara received Bachelor’s degrees in Italian and Industrial Design from the University of Kansas. She has a Master of Science in Design (MSD) with a focus on Design Methodology, Theory, and Criticism from Arizona State where she also completed cross-disciplinary doctoral studies in creativity and education. She has successfully completed CPSI creative facilitator training. In addition to teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in multiple universities, Tamara has offered presentations and workshops at a variety of creativity and innovation conferences around the globe.
Her greatest joy is being a proud mom of a wildly creative little man who wants to be a Willy Wonka Mythbuster when he grows up.
Laura DeWitt is an empathetic and intuitive qualitative researcher who brings over 25 years of experience to her work. Her perspective is far reaching: from co-creation to usability, strategy to execution, and combining qualitative wisdom with quantitative insight. Laura believes that inspiration lives all around us, we just need to look and listen.
With significant global experience born from a love of diverse culture, Laura has worked tirelessly to bring fresh thinking and approaches to the disciplines of branding, strategy and design as she researched her way around the globe. The consistent thread she offers to each business challenge is a fresh viewpoint unearthed from the worlds in which both clients and consumers live. Her client base is expansive - serving the many of the Fortune 500 consumer packaged goods companies as well as companies in the B2B and technology sector.
Laura’s professional path has taken her to both the client and agency side of the business. Her 10+ years on the client side include research roles at Kraft Foods, The Quaker Oats Company and UNext.com (University of Chicago e-business school). During this time she enjoyed research positions that helped her gain deep appreciation and respect for the client’s broader perspective and daily business challenges.
Her agency experience is noteworthy spanning over 12 years. Her affection for the design community is the impetus behind much of her professional growth as she attained significant management positions with LAGA/Brandimage and Webb DeVlam. During this time Laura has been responsible for spearheading unique ways of combining research disciplines to offer value-added methods the take design thinking to the next level. She is most at home leading co-creative innovation efforts that support global client learning with proprietary, visually stimulating qualitative techniques.
Laura received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from Simmons College in Boston, MA, completing part of her studies at the University of London. Throughout her diverse career, Laura has had extensive training in moderating skills/analysis and has earned her Master Moderator Certificate from the RIVA Training Institute in Bethesda, MD. She has been actively moderating in the US and Canada and overseeing international work for her clients for more than 15 years, and is also a CPSI trained facilitator.
Her greatest joy is being a proud mom of two spirited teenage daughters and one Lucky dog.