Bold Rebel Leaders Panel
Using Creativity to Solve Problems and Advance Leadership
Don’t miss the Bold Rebel Leaders Panel at the 2019 Leadership Convention presented by NAAAP. Unconventional leaders will discuss how creativity can guide us in solving complex problems, shaping our experiences, and advancing our leadership. You’ll hear from experts and innovators in Global Sports Architecture, Global Cinema Design, Nationwide Interior Design and Landscape Design.
Register to hear this powerful panel discussion.
Moderator & Panelists
Samantha McCloud, AIA, NCARB, is an award-winning architect and the Director of Community Involvement, Diversity & Inclusion at design firm GastingerWalker based in Kansas City, MO. Her responsibilities include design leadership, project management, business development, public relations, and roles related to firm culture and human resources. In all her projects and ventures, Samantha implements design-thinking skills to discover solutions and deliver success. Working with people, environment, science, technology and culture, creativity is a valuable asset for blending abstract and technical problem-solving. Samantha has a project portfolio of over $500 million in construction value. Her design work includes cinemas, convention centers, higher education, multi-family and corporate office projects nationwide.
Samantha is a bold community builder, and her advocacy work breaks traditional models of power. Over the last ten years, through grassroots efforts and a bottom-up approach, Samantha has continuously launched and led multiple leadership development programs and talent pipeline efforts to improve equity, diversity and inclusion in architecture. Partnering organizations include the American Institute of Architects, 20/20 Leadership, and the Girl Scouts of America. Samantha is also the co-founder of Equity in Architecture and an active member of the KC D & I Consortium. Samantha speaks regularly to local, regional, and national audiences on success, and she governs the annual distribution of $50,000+ of scholarship funds. Samantha’s recent speaking engagements include the EQxDV National Conference, AGA Professional Development Conference, and the AIA Big Sibs Conference.
Samantha was recently honored by The Business Journal as a 2018 Kansas City NextGen Leader and Ink Magazine as a 2017 “30 Under 30” top individual making a difference. Her work has been published by Architect Magazine, AIA National Trust, and AIA Kansas City. Samantha received her Master of Architecture from Kansas State University.
Ninah Butler, PLA, ASLA is a Professional Landscape Architect with over 5 years of experience, currently working with BHC RHODES in Overland Park, KS. Her career has followed a winding path. Before becoming a Landscape Architect, she taught high school science for 10 years. It was while teaching that Ninah became interested in designing outdoor spaces that would engage and stimulate people. Wanting a change in career direction, she looked to landscape architecture as a way to creatively influence people’s daily lives. She earned her Master’s in Landscape Architecture at Kansas State University through their Post-Baccalaureate program in 2013. During her 5 years with BHC RHODES, she has worked with a team of civil engineers and one other landscape architect to design a wide variety of projects ranging from commercial sites, hospital therapy gardens, military projects, and streetscapes. Despite her career change, Ninah still has a passion for education. She is always seeking opportunities to share with others how landscape architecture is more than just making pretty spaces. She believes that design provides opportunities to engage the world that we daily pass through. Her background as an educator has provided her with the skills and interest to question the how, and why of the world around her. The leadership expertise gained during her time as a teacher have led her to be an active participant in PGASLA’s Executive Committee and serves as membership chair, helping to organize social events. She is also involved with the Center for Design, and teaches the Exploring Design Outreach Program.
Naihao Fan, Associate AIA is a Global Cinema Designer and Associate at GastingerWalker. Headquartered in Kansas City, GastingerWalker is an award-winning architecture firm recognized by the Business Journal, Architect Magazine, Thrillist, EDC KC, Architectural Digest and more. With a deep respect for context and culture, Naihao leads and manages projects from conceptual design to final construction. He enjoys using creativity to navigate the variety of stakeholder interests, schedules, budgets and goals. Naihao has designed over hundreds of cinemas and screens across the US and internationally. Notable clients from his project portfolio include AMC Theatres, Jackie Chan Cinema, China Film, Cinemark, and more.
Naihao designs by pushing boundaries and exploring innovative solutions for every project. He values design for its positive impact on people’s lives and environments. He appreciates architecture and creativity as a lifestyle, guiding him to constantly evolve and learn new things. Having lived and traveled to many different nations, Naihao enjoys engaging with communities that offer diverse perspectives and opportunities to develop new skills. He believes understanding and respecting peoples’ unique cultures improves creativity and communication.
Born in Zhengzhou, China, Naihao understands the challenges of working as an immigrant architect and navigating the green card process. Perseverance, patience, and creativity are important principles to prospering and finding belonging. Naihao received his Master of Architecture from Kansas State University.
Kloe Katubig, LEED GA, WELL AP is a Filipina American, Fashion Model, Community Organizer and Senior Interior Designer at HOK, located in the downtown Kansas City area. HOK is recognized by the Business Journal as the second largest architecture firm in Kansas City and specializes in sports, entertainment, office, mixed-use and civic projects. Kloe believes that the best way to lead a creative team is to create an environment that people love to work in. She has seen how happiness and wellbeing play a huge role in the success of a team and in the success of design outcomes. Kloe’s design portfolio includes numerous large-scale projects across the US, such as the Miami Dolphins – Hardrock Stadium, Atlanta Hawks- Statefarm Arena, and the Chicago Bears practice facility – Halas Hall.
Kloe’s passion for architecture is driven by her love for designing spaces that create beautiful experiences and memories for its users. She also explores this passion through organizing and supporting interdisciplinary design events in the Kansas City local community, such as IIDA Color + Couture, KC Fashion Week and KC Design Week. Established in 2010, KC Design Week is an annual 8-day creativity celebration that showcases a variety of design knowledge through unique workshops, presentations, tours, and experiences. Other community organizations Kloe partners with include Operation Breakthrough and WeCare.
Kloe values many diverse forms of bold creativity beyond and connected to architecture. Photography modeling and runway offer her new ways of exploring her artistic expression and new ways of collaborating with the creative community. As an entrepreneur, Kloe also strives as an independent cosmetic consultant, enriching women’s lives by making them feel beautiful and confident in their self-expression. Kloe earned her Bachelor of Architectural Studies-Interior Design from the University of Missouri.
Alex Ogata is an educator, designer and architect at Populous, a global architecture and design firm. As director, Alex leads Populous’ design studio which was formed specifically to foster ideas of innovation and push the boundaries of what is possible. The design studio accomplishes this, primarily by focusing on conceptual design, R&D and talent development. In his role as design studio director, Alex collaborates with project teams across the global Populous network to create places where millions of people come together to share incredible experiences. Alex also works with the firm’s management team to identify, mentor and grow young design talent into future leaders.
Creative work is often depicted as a lone, heroic act, brought about individual inspiration. The reality is that truly creative projects are the result of diverse groups of people who bring their own talents and worldviews into a cohesive whole. Every day, design teams face the challenge of balancing expectations for consistency and predictability out of an inherently chaotic and unpredictable process. Leading creative teams can require different techniques from what management books offer. Fostering a culture that empowers talented, headstrong individuals to take bold risks and question assumptions is a key aspect of creative leadership and a pillar of the culture at Populous and the firm’s design studio.
Alex has a unique and diverse background having worked in design practices in his native Peru as well as Italy and France. As an architect, Alex has worked on the design of major projects for San Francisco International Airport, the FBI, the National Nuclear Security Administration as well as a variety of civic, aviation, convention and sports facilities both in the United States and abroad.
As an educator, Alex has experience teaching comprehensive design at the University of Kansas, Kansas State and Stanford’s Center for Integrated Facilities. He has been recipient of the Fulbright/IIE grant, the SOM travelling fellowship and the Shinkenchiku Design Competition Award. He is also active in a variety of design and leadership organizations in his adopted hometown of Kansas City.
Diversity Career Fair Sponsors
American Advertising Federation (AAF) - Kansas City • American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) Kansas City • The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Kansas City • The Asian American Chamber of Commerce of Kansas City • International Relations Council • Kansas City Center for Inclusion • Kansas City Chinese Association •