Meet our Teachers.

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Don MacPherson, BS


Don is CEO of 12 Geniuses, a podcast he hosts where he interviews exceptional people about trends and technologies changing the way we live and work. A five-time entrepreneur, Don has spent 25 years studying the employee experience, the attributes of great leadership, and how healthy organizational cultures are created and sustained.

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Rahul Goel, MS


Rahul is a tech lead manager at Google Bard where he is leading modeling efforts at Bard Extensions. Prior to that Rahul was a modeling Lead at Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. Rahul is one of the leading voices in the field of LLMs with expertise in Generative AI and Dialogue systems.

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Kristen M Lee, MA


Kristen is a PhD student in Health Psychology at UCLA where she conducts research at the intersection of social connection, health behaviors, and wellbeing. Her work considers the broader social context as well as social-emotional factors (e.g., sense of belonging) that promote or inhibit positive behavior change.

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Mads Lillelund, MBA


Mads has 20+ years of C-suite experience in high-tech markets. He has led companies through massive product transformations with a focus on disaggregated, virtualized, and cloud native software solutions and has built high performance teams and led the exits for several firms.

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Laura Isela Hazlett, PhD


Laura has a PhD in Social Psychology from the Social and Affective Neuroscience Lab at UCLA. Her expertise is in understanding how positive social emotions, such as gratitude and social warmth, affect our brains and bodies. Laura is now interested in developing interventions that cultivate these emotions.

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Paul van der Laken, PhD


Paul’s PhD is in People Analytics, with a focus on the application, usage and deployment of statistical and algorithmic techniques in the HR domain. He has been leading and managing innovation and data analytics teams at multinational companies, including Mars and Royal Dutch Shell. Paul also teaches professionals in effective data science deployment.

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Luigi Maria Fierro, MBA


Luigi, Head of People & Culture at Clarity AI and former Head of of HR Strategy and People Analytics at ING, leads the HR strategic agenda globally with focus on developing people as well as advanced analytics solutions. Previously he worked with McKinsey & Co. for 10 years, where, among many other things, he contributed to the development of the Organizational Health Index.

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Laura C. Wells, MBA

Founder & CEO

Laura has trained leaders in emotional intelligence at organizations including LinkedIn, Facebook, and Kaiser Permanente. She also led Marketing at the nonprofit Brain & Behavior Research Foundation where she learned about neuroplasticity and human potential for behavior change. Prior to that she worked internationally in Fortune 100 CPG companies as a brand manager.

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We’re Looking for New Teachers

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Engage Teams!

Workplace teams of 4-10 access AwakeTeams in 3-month modules. These include synchronous team sessions, anonymous peer feedback, asynchronous bite-sized learning, and monthly progress reports. Team learning optimizes program engagement, application, and accountability.