R.E. Dalrymple (Global Brand Lead, Kaijudo, Wizards of the Coast)
Began at Wizards in 1996, helping build the global tournament system for Magic: the Gathering. Transitioned to Wizards’ Brand Management in 2005, taking responsibility for Wizards’ Japanese business, with a particular focus on Brand Development for the market’s lead TCG for kids: Duel Masters. Spearheaded the reinvention of the TCG business in 2007 to create steady stream of interconnected, surprising and exciting products and stories keeping fans engaged in brand activity throughout each year. Duel Masters became the #1 selling toy (not just TCG) in Japan in 2008, reinvigorating the entire Japanese TCG category. In 2010, Wizards decided to take Duel Masters global, and RE became the Global Brand Lead responsible for reinventing the brand’s story, product and brand plan for a global audience under a new name: Kaijudo. In mid-2012, Kaijudo launched successfully on TV, online and at retail, continuing its growth and expansion to the present day.
Amy Peloff, Ph.D (Comparative History of Ideas Program, University of Washington)
Dr. Amy Peloff is the Assistant Director of the Comparative History of Ideas Program and an Affiliate Assistant Professor of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies at the University of Washington. Her work examines the role that popular culture has played in disseminating feminist ideas beyond the organizations and activists that identified as feminist in the United States, particularly during the second wave of feminism. A voracious consumer of female detective stories, sci-fi and fantasy television series, and Hollywood gossip, she continually studies the ways in which ideas about identities are created, presented, and shared through media and popular culture.
Mark Sherman (Writer, Strange Attractors–Retrografix Comics)
Mark Sherman is co-Author of Strange Attractors, a retro-science fiction comic epic that Jimmie Gownley, creator of Amelia Rules, calls “A compelling universe populated with the coolest female cast this side of Love and Rockets. Cohen and Sherman are the Lennon and McCartney of postmodern Sci-Fi comic books.” Sherman has taught professional and technical writing at WWU for the last thirty years while recording three CDs with his zydeco band The Kingbees of the Bayou. His handbook on the guerrilla art of palm reading Palms Up!: A Handy Guide to 21st-Century Palmistry is available from Penguin USA.
Anthony van Winkle (Creator, Night Zero)
Born and raised in Seattle, Anthony van Winkle is a technology director by day and pursues artistic passions by night. He is regularly found behind-the-scenes in improv, film, and theater throughout the area. In 2007 Anthony created NIGHT ZERO, a photographic novel of the post-apocalypse, and spent the next five years shooting his zombie apocalypse on location with a full cast and crew. The series has published five trade paperbacks and toured at conventions around the country, where Anthony has spoken on topics from zombie culture to independent production to gender roles in modern storytelling. He is pleased to be a speaker at VikingCon and looks forward to meeting you after the panel.
Jessica Obrist (Producer, Jo Jo Stiletto Events)
Jessica Obrist, aka Jo Jo Stiletto, is a burlesque producer, performer and historian, and is known as the Professor of Nerdlesque – the leading authority on all things nerdy in burlesque. She is currently working on a book project titled Nerdlesque: The New Burlesque represented by Red Sofa Literary and has been interviewed on the subject for several publications including The Wall Street Journal, Geekwire, Penthouse, and Seattle Pulp. Jessica has lectured and moderated panels on burlesque, feminism and fandom for events like GeekGirlCon, BurlyCon and Nerd Nite. Sometimes she does this dressed as Agent Scully.
Jennifer K. Stuller (Ink-Stained Amazon, GeekGirlCon)
Jennifer K. Stuller is a writer, author, scholar, media critic and feminist pop culture historian. She is the Director of Programming and Events for, as well as a co-founder of, Seattle’s own GeekGirlCon; the author of Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology (I.B. Tauris), and the editor of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Fan Phenomena (Intellect, 2013). Additionally, Stuller is a noted public speaker, and a member of Humanities Washington’s Speakers Bureau. She can be found at Ink-StainedAmazon.com, and has vowed to use her powers only for good.
William B. Davis (Author/Director/Actor, The X-Files)
A native Ontarian, Davis trained as an actor in esteemed company in the U.K. during the 1960s before returning to Canada to work as a theatrical director and drama teacher, eventually relocating to Hollywood North, Vancouver, BC. The 1980s saw him garnering small parts in inauspicious Canadian-shot television and movie projects, but he would establish a regular imprint in 1993 with a new science fiction series, The X-Files. He would remain one of Canada’s best-renowned thespian talents, both under the lights and behind them, yet be irrevocably identified as one of the creepiest personas in TV history, a gray-suited archetype of cold-blooded Machiavellianism.
Douglas Park (Department of English, WWU)
Douglas Park has been teaching science fiction and film studies at Western since 1994. He has been been a dedicated reader of science fiction for the past 60 years.
James Hawkins (Founder of BitCreature)
James Hawkins is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Bit Creature, a digital boutique about video games that has been featured in publications such as the New York Times, the New Statesman, and across video game websites like Kotaku and Giant Bomb. James is the former Senior Editor for Village Voice Media’s national video game website, Joystick Division, a freelancer for Paste Magazine, a published poet, and dabbling sportswriter.
Chris Clow (Columnist, Movies.com and GeekNation/Staff, The Comics Place)
Chris Clow is a freelance writer on topics of comics and geek culture that contributes to Movies.com, GeekNation, and Modern Myth Media. He is also a comics enthusiast, reviewer, and commentator, in addition to working locally at Bellingham’s oldest and best comic book store, The Comics Place. Chris’s writing has taken him from the halls of the San Diego Comic Con to the set of Christopher Nolan’s THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, and he has been fortunate enough to interview people like directors Matthew Vaughn (X-MEN: FIRST CLASS) and Zack Snyder (MAN OF STEEL), as well as actors like Jackie Earle Haley (WATCHMEN), Christian Bale (THE DARK KNIGHT), and Anne Hathaway (THE DARK KNIGHT RISES). Chris’s current contributions are to Movies.com, where he writes an article called “The Geek Beat” every week, and to GeekNation, where he writes on a variety of topics relating to comics. Find him on Twitter @ChrisClow.
Janet Lee Carey (Author, Dragonswood, Dial Books for Young Readers)
Janet Lee Carey is the award-winning author of eight Young Adult novels including Dragonswood, (Kirkus and School Library Journal starred reviews). School Library Journal calls her work, “fantasy at its best-original, beautiful, amazing, and deeply moving.” Carey links each new book with a charitable organization empowering readers to reach out and make a difference. She tours the U.S. and abroad presenting at schools, book festivals and conferences for writers, teachers, and librarians.
Shaawano Chad Uran (White Earth Anishinaabe/University of Washington)
Shaawano Chad Uran (White Earth Anishinaabe/PhD, Anthropology) finally made sense of his seemingly disparate interests in anthropological theory, indigenous activism, and horror films, by delivering his course, “Zombies and Indians,” at the University of Washington, not once, but twice, during the 2012-2013 academic year. While critics have examined social issues in zombie literature, such as race during the Civil Rights Era in Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead,” or post-9/11 bioterror and Islamophobia in Boyle’s “28 Days Later” and Snyder’s remake of “Dawn of the Dead,” Dr. Uran’s course extends analysis beyond contemporary social anxieties through an indigenist history of how human difference has been defined to serve Western colonial and imperial interests since at least 1492—the year Columbus sailed the ocean blue… on his way to Pacific Playland
Mark Rahner (Writer, Dynamite, Rotten)
Mark Rahner is the creator of the acclaimed independent zombie-western comic, Rotten. His work includes Green Hornet, Vampirella, Warlord of Mars, Lord of the Jungle (Tarzan), Dejah Thoris and the White Apes of Mars, Dejah Thoris and the Green Men of Mars and others for Dynamite. His weekly “Special Ops” Geek Nation podcast with Brandon Jerwa can be heard at KISW radio, Seattle. Rahner was also the longtime pop culture writer and critic for the Seattle Times.
Danika Dinsmore (Author)
Danika Dinsmore works and plays in speculative fiction with an emphasis on juvenile and young adult literature. With a background in performing arts and education, she often takes her show on the road, entertaining children at festivals and schools and teaching world-building to both kids and adults. She is author of children’s fantasy novels Brigitta of the White Forest, The Ruins of Noe, and Ondelle of Grioth (forthcoming Nov 2013). Most recently, her short story “String Theory” appeared in Futuredaze.
Brandon Jerwa (Comic Writer, Dynamite/DC/Image)
Brandon Jerwa is a freelance comic book and video game writer. His notable comics include Shooters, Vampirella, G.I. Joe, Battlestar Galactica, and his creator-owned digital series, Frost: Rogue State. Jerwa is also a major contributor to the Kaijudo card game franchise. He can be heard 4 times a week on the BJ SHEA’S GEEK NATION podcast (www.bjgeeknation.com) and has represented the United States twice at the FIBDA comics festival in Algiers, Algeria.
James Taylor (Co-Founder, Jet City Comic-Con)
James Taylor has a background in traditional art receiving a degree in Fine Art at Calvin College with an emphasis in graphic design in 1998. After finishing college James began working as a graphic designer in the tech industry while starting working as an artist/inker in comic books in the evenings. Within two years made the switch to a full-time freelance artist in the comic book industry and in 2003 he started his own little publishing company, Rorschach Entertainment.
Carl Thomas (Founder, Darthpixel)
Carl Thomas is the founder of Darthpixel, an online portal that provides unbiased game reviews that view a ‘videogame’ not just as a purchase but as a piece of interactive art. Carl is also a Software Engineer for Tag Creative Studios in Seattle, WA using cutting edge web technologies to make unique web experiences and pushing the boundaries on website design.