Speaker Date Topic
Jessica Payne, University of Notre Dame Apr 29, 2019 12:00 PM
Sleep on it! There's More to it that Just the Old Adage
Sleep on it! There's More to it that Just the Old Adage

Dr. Payne’s research focuses on how sleep and stress influence human memory and psychological function.

After new information is encoded into memory, it continues to be processed and transformed by a process known as consolidation. This process solidifies memories, making them resistant to interference and decay, but emerging evidence suggests that it can also change memories in ways that make them more useful and adaptive. The questions driving this line of research are, “What happens to memories over time?” and “What are the mechanisms underlying memory solidification and memory change?” Dr. Payne uses two powerful tools to probe memory - sleep and stress. Both provide important mediums for targeting the consolidation process in humans. Dr. Payne combines behavioral, pharmacological and cognitive neuroscientific (EEG, fMRI) approaches to investigate these questions.

Another line of research examines important clinical questions, including how disturbances in sleep and stress influence memory consolidation in individuals with major depressive disorder and anxiety disorders such as PTSD, and how this, in turn, influences psychological functioning. 

For more on Dr. Payne's research CLICK HERE


Bryan Ritchie, VP and Associate Provost May 06, 2019 12:00 PM
University of Notre Dame Idea Center
University of Notre Dame Idea Center

Bryan Ritchie, Ph.D., M.B.A. is vice president and associate provost for innovation at the University of Notre Dame. In this role, Ritchie leads the University’s new IDEA Center initiative and coordinates the University’s innovation, commercialization and entrepreneurship programs. 

Ritchie’s wide range of business and academic experience spans entrepreneurial startups, large corporate management, consulting, technology transfer and academic teaching and leadership. An expert in venture startup, value creation, and organizational execution, he has helped many enterprises, large and small, create and execute on their highest strategic initiatives.

Ritchie is a serial entrepreneur who has formed several information technology companies. He has held management positions in or consulted for numerous other information technology companies including Century Software, Dayna Communications, IBM, Novell, IOMEGA, Seagate, Megahertz, and 3Com. His work with these companies focused on executing new product development initiatives, such as groundbreaking product launches of wireless computing adaptors (Dayna), mobile video (3Com/Megahertz), removable storage (IOMEGA), multi-media networking (Novell), and cross-platform communications (Century Software).

Ritchie also combined his private sector experience with academic work. As a professor of political economy at Michigan State University for 11 years and associate vice president for research commercialization at the University of Utah for five, Ritchie is a thought and execution leader on innovation, entrepreneurship, technological development, skills education and training, and social capital. He has authored books and articles on relationship economics, sustainable growth, and technological upgrading, all of which have influenced our knowledge about the decisions and processes behind high-growth enterprises. He is a widely renowned teacher and is the recipient of many awards and grants.

Dr. Ritchie has effectively provided leadership and community building to connect work among academics, business and government leaders, and student/community entrepreneurs.

Ritchie received an M.B.A. from the Marriott School at Brigham Young University, a Ph.D. from Emory University and a B.A. from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Brooke Ammerman - University of Notre Dame May 13, 2019 12:00 PM
Suicide Prevention in Our Community – What You Can Do
Suicide Prevention in Our Community – What You Can Do

Professor Ammerman’s research examines the spectrum of self-injurious thoughts and behaviors, including non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI), suicidal ideation, and suicide attempts; she works from the framework that self-injurious thoughts and behaviors serve as an extreme means of emotion regulation. Utilizing a multi-method approach, Professor Ammerman’s research seeks to understand how various intra- and inter- personal factors interact to increase chronic or imminent risk of self-injurious thoughts and behaviors. Professor Ammerman has a particular interest in the interpersonal context in which these thoughts and behaviors occur and how they may overlap with other risk behaviors (e.g. aggression, substance use).

Iris Hammel - Regional Innovation & Startup Educ. May 20, 2019 12:00 PM
Act Learn Build - A Phrase that Embodies both Innovation + Entrepreneurship
Act Learn Build - A Phrase that Embodies both Innovation + Entrepreneurship
Memorial Day - No Meeting May 27, 2019
We remember and honor those persons who have died while serving in the US Armed Forces
We remember and honor those persons who have died while serving in the US Armed Forces
Scott Ford Jun 03, 2019 12:00 PM
Associate Vice President for Economic Development
Associate Vice President for Economic Development

Scott Ford is the associated vice president for economic development at the University of Notre Dame. Prior to joining the University in March 2018, Ford served in leadership roles as the executive vice president with Bradley Company, and from 2012 to 2016, as the executive director of community investment for the City of South Bend.  

In his time with Mayor Pete Buttigieg's Administration, Ford implemented a strategic restructuring of the City's approach to economic development that yielded nearly 2,600 new announced jobs and $440 million in new private investment to the City. Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government recognized his work as one of the "Bright Ideas in Government" in 2014. Ford was also responsible for the strategic design, direction and funding of several placemaking initiatives including the Smart Streets initiative that the US Department of Transportation recognized in 2016 with the Secretary's Awards for Overall Success in the USDOT Mayors' Challenge. 

Prior to his tenure with the City of South Bend, Ford developed extensive experience in urban policy working in the related fields of economic development, architecture and urban design. Ford earned his bachelor's degree in government with a concentration in philosophy, politics and economics and a master's degree in architecture from Notre Dame. He also holds a master's degree in planning, growth and regeneration from the University of Cambridge. 

Ford is an active member of the Congress for the New Urbanism and the Certified Commercial Investment Member Institute. He currently serves as a board member of the St. Joe Valley Metronet and enFocus. He previously served as a board member of several other organizations including the South Bend Urban Enterprise Association, Community Home Buyers Association, the Economic Development Commission and the Industrial Revolving Loan Fund. 

Lisa Guedea Carreño Jun 10, 2019 12:00 PM
Director at Elkhart Public Library
Director at Elkhart Public Library

Lisa Guedea Carreño was working as a corporate librarian in Madison, Wisconsin. She’d been on the cover of “Inc.” magazine. She and her husband Sonny were happy. But her phone kept ringing.

In 1999 and 2000, Goshen College kept asking her to apply to be library director.

After the job offer came, they said, “Why not?” and committed to three to five years. In the summer of 2000, they moved and she found a new life to love.

They started a family and her family helped care for her daughter. They made friends who became “the family you find,” she said.

She found pieces of urban culture. “Had the Electric Brew not been in Goshen the first two or three years after I moved, I’m not sure I would have survived,” she said. Eventually the MapleHeart Trail gave her access to Goshen and Elkhart by foot or bike from her home.

Sonny started directing Lavender Jazz and has become not just a drummer, but a music mentor in a number of bands, including Lalo Cura. She got to lead three Study Service Terms in Nicaragua. Three days before she left for one of them in spring 2014, she hesitantly interviewed to be director of the Elkhart Public Library. The offer came that summer in Central America and she said yes.

“What I like about Elkhart is there is this sort of groundswell for making Elkhart appealing as a place to come and live and stay …” says Lisa Guedea Carreno.

She’s learned to know and love Elkhart the way she has Goshen. She loves being able to go to an organic restaurant one day for lunch and to a Mexican market the next day.

“What I like about Elkhart is there is this sort of groundswell for making Elkhart appealing as a place to come and live and stay, especially as young people,” she said, noting that Vibrant Communities (Lisa serves on the steering committee) and Regional Cities are helping the effort.

While people often think of a library as a place, Lisa and her staff are working to offer educational opportunities, family-friendly events, and ways to both build and engage the community.

That involves offering electronic services that allow access throughout the community and going out into the community. “We have live story times in the parks and at Wellfield Botanic Gardens during the summer. During the school year, our children’s librarians visit schools and lead classes in special activities that build literacy skills. Last summer we hosted an eclipse viewing party at Civic Plaza, working with local businesses to make it fun and memorable for the 600 or so people who came,” she said, adding that they’re working on quality of life and quality of place.

As a Latina community leader, Lisa is helping shape the story of this community.

Article by Marshall V. King, Goshen-based freelance journalist. He wrote this on behalf of Vibrant Communities.

Deb Alwine Jun 17, 2019 12:00 PM
Southgate Crossing
Southgate Crossing

The Mission of Southgate Crossing is grounded in preserving one of the largest Amish built peg and beam barns in the nation, a beautiful and unique cultural landmark in rural Indiana’s Elkhart County.

We are committed to creating an experience-based destination, rooted in celebrating the traditional know-how of our agricultural and folk heritage and we are dedicated to supporting local artisan producers.

People shape places! We invite you to join us in fostering an environment grounded in healthy food, sustainable practices, and community building. At Southgate Crossing you can take a class, gather for large and small events and meetings, find unique shopping items, enjoy a tasty meal, and experience entertainment and fun for the entire family.

The Big Red Barn
Located just off the bypass south of Elkhart, Indiana, the big red barn was built by Amish craftsmen using the old world tradition of joining mortise and tenon with wooden pegs. Construction on this expansive building began in 2006. Longer than a football field, it features hundreds of solid heavy timber beams, columns and braces that are prepared with mortise and tenons that were cut and notched together for the framing of the three-story structure. High clerestory windows provide natural lighting and ventilation for the open interior spaces. It has three towering cupolas with the center cupola topping out at 84-feet.

The Founder’s Beam
Early in 2006 four investors, farmer, Kenny BeMiller, architect, LeRoy Troyer, developer-builder, Art Moser, and attorney, Mick Tuesley gathered with their families to fell a 100 year old white oak. This act symbolized the beginning of the wood timber framing at the market. The beam can be found in the southeast corner of the second floor.

The Wood
Harvested locally and milled on an Amish farm, white and red oak, hickory, beech and poplar trees were used for the columns, slope beams and braces. Over nine truckloads of Douglas fir beams were sourced from Idaho. The largest timbers used in constructing the center court are 16″ x 16″. The American black walnut found on the wooden staircase railing and trim came from a 96͛’ tree which fell during a 2003 storm in a forest preserve behind architect LeRoy Troyer͛s home. The wood was harvested, cut and air-dried for 3 years before being used. The hardwood pegs were made by pounding wood through a short, one-inch round steel pipe. After shaping, they are pounded into pre-drilled holes in the timbers. This secures the mortis and tenons. Once assembled, timbers and wood pegs continue to dry ensuring a tight wood-to-wood bond that is virtually impossible to take apart.

The Construction
Four Amish construction crews totaling about 30 workers worked together to build the barn. Orie Lehman, of Lehman Carpentry, Shipshewana, Indiana was the construction coordinator, and David Bontrager and his son Rudy of D.L. Bontrager Construction, Middlebury, Indiana led the barn raising.

Lisa Koop Jun 24, 2019 12:00 PM
Associate Director of Legal Services, National Immigrant Justice Center
Associate Director of Legal Services, National Immigrant Justice Center

Lisa Koop, associate director of legal services, directs NIJC's asylum project, handles federal litigation, and provides representation and supervision in deportation defense matters.  Lisa specializes in litigation, policy, and direct services advocacy on behalf of immigrant survivors of gender-based violence. Lisa heads NIJC’s Indiana office and is an adjunct professor at Notre Dame Law School. Lisa graduated magna cum laude from Indiana University McKinney School of Law in 2004.