March 26, 2013



Maia Stone

Executive Director, Board Member, MBA, MT, CPA

MindSpark-StoneAfter receiving a Bachelor in Fine Arts, Maia worked for 10 years in hospitality, for companies such as Marriott, Hyatt, and Disney.  Maia obtained an MBA in Real Estate and a Master of Taxation from the University of Denver, and went on to become a CPA.  She has experience in Big 4 public accounting, corporate tax, and running a small bookkeeping and tax firm.  Maia has been active in other organizations around Denver, such as Social Venture Partners, Colorado Creative Industries, Roots and Branches, Northeast Denver Children’s Collaborative, and the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network.  Maia and her husband have two beautiful young kids, and in her free time, Maia enjoys family time with the two dogs, travel, yoga, knitting, sewing, and photography.


Phone: (303) 909-5353


Daniel Gwirtsman is a teaching assistant who is interested in fostering a creative experience through learning.  Daniel received a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology/Anthropology at Lewis & Clark College, and hopes to obtain an MBA in Teaching.  In his free time, Daniel enjoys reading, playing music, hiking, and snowboarding.

Ally Seeley graduated from the University of Denver in 2011 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Electronic Media Arts and Design.  While in school she developed her skills in the electronic textiles field (otherwise known as e-textiles).  Since graduating she has attended Maker Faire San Mateo and New York City, spearheading an e-textile community space for attendees to take workshops and makers to showcase their e-textile works. Ally has taught e-textile workshops/classes at the Denver Art Museum, Denver Green School, Kepner Middle School and University Park Elementary School.  When not teaching, Ally works for Something Independent to help continue their mission in providing leadership at the intersection of lifestyle and commerce.

For more visit her professional website.


Board of Directors

Johnny Klein, Board Chair


Johnny is Founder and President of Embassy Concepts, a group building urban and rural hospitality projects that get people talking. Prior to Embassy, Johnny was employed across Asia, Europe, and the Americas, applying his enthusiastic style and leadership to the likes of IBM, AT&T and Qwest Communications.




Gisela Flanigan


Dr. Gisela Flanigan is a consultant with more than a decade of experience in advocating for the arts at the local, state and national level.  Her wealth of knowledge and experience includes national and international affiliations, consultancies, site visits and panel participation with various arts organizations. Flanigan has given lecture-recital presentations for the College Music Society regional, national and international conferences, as well as presentations for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Educational Department. She has performed internationally in Europe and the Americas, most notably with the Orquesta Sinfonica Simon Bolivar, at festivals in France, Italy and, in Venezuela at the request of the El Sistema program. She earned B.M. and M.M. degrees in Piano Performance from the University of Miami and a D.M.A. from the University of North Texas.  She served as faculty at Drake University, Grinnell College, Bowling Green State University, Heidelberg University and the Barry Tuckwell Institute. Her current civic and professional affiliations include local, state, and national institutions: member and former Chair of the Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture, Board of Directors of the Crested Butte Music Festival, Denver-based non-profit MindSparkWestern Colorado Writers Forum advisory board, and CMS committees – Careers Outside the Academy and Cultural Inclusion. Her expertise is also in demand as a grant reviewer, conference planner and facilitator for Colorado Creative Industries. She was selected as one of 12 creative artists statewide to be a founding member of its new Change Leaders Institute.


Jay Nakashima


Jay has invested over twenty years in healthcare I.T. helping physicians, nurses, geneticists, and even blood bankers better treat patients using technology. Jay has an MBA and multiple technology certifications. Married to a DPS teacher, their two children attend the Denver Language School, a public language immersion charter school.  Jay was one of the original professionals that participated in MindSpark’s adult excursions program in 2004.



Todd Vitale


Vitale started his own public affairs consultancy in 2003, and since that time he and his firm have served more than 100 corporate, non-profit, and political clients in industry areas including technology, natural resources, science, transportation, real-estate, education, and labor law. Vitale offers his clients more than 20 years of experience in the disciplines of public opinion research, public policy research, stakeholder communications, public finance, campaign strategy, grassroots development, community outreach and public affairs technology.  In addition to serving on the Board of Mindspark, Vitale is a little league baseball coach for his 3 boys (6, 9, 11 years old) and a volunteer at their schools. Vitale has also been throughout his career a frequent panelist at public policy forums, conferences, and a guest on public affairs television shows.  Vitale was also chosen as one of Metro Denver’s top young leaders, as part of the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Denver program. And, Vitale was recognized by The Colorado Statesman, as one of the “Fifty for the Future.”   Vitale got his start in public affairs serving as a Legislative Assistant to a U.S. Congressman. Vitale earned his B.A. in International Business from Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

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