Innovation and Austin Shakespeare
Why is Austin the innovation mecca that it is today? Austin is recognized as a community with the cultural diversity that is known to lead to innovation. Exposure to new ideas helps people with creative problem solving (see Richard Florida’s work on the Creative Class, as well as one of Leslie’s papers on Problem Solving).
Austin Shakespeare, founded in 1984, is a professional, classical theater production and education company, passionate about providing theater education for all ages. The company performs plays by William Shakespeare as well as Tom Stoppard, Tennessee Williams, Oscar Wilde and Noël Coward. Young Shakespeare, a teen company, presents Shakespeare’s plays at the Curtain Theater, a replica of The Globe Theater in West Austin, with a professional director and creative team.
And Austin Shakespeare is one of the institutions that make Austin what it is today, especially through the annual Free Shakespeare in the Park, the performances of the Young Shakespeare theater company, programs for middle and high school students, and theater productions at the Long Center.
About our speaker:
Leslie Martinich is the President of Competitive Focus, concentrating on innovation and engineering leadership, and the Board President of Austin Shakespeare, combining her focus on innovation and culture.
Leslie’s early work in computer science includes developing operating systems and networking technology. She was the co-architect of RPC (Remote Procedure Call) Technology, enabling what is now known as cloud computing. She recognized the organizational skills needed for innovations to succeed and has published broadly in the area of innovation management.
As an executive in Austin’s technology sector, Leslie encourages people to explore the bold, imaginative, thought-provoking ideas eminently accessible through theater.
Leslie holds an M.S. in Computer Sciences from the University of Texas at Austin, as well as an M.A. in Philosophy from UT. She did her undergraduate work at the University of California at San Diego.
Leslie and her husband Al have lived in Austin for almost 50 years. And if you ask her, she’ll be happy to show you her mind-bending tricks (writing upside down and backwards, in cursive, on an Etch-A-Sketch) or make you one of her famous lemon meringue pies! Need to borrow a hat for next year’s Derby or an afternoon wedding? Leslie will loan you one of her more-than-a-hundred hats! She is always in favor of fun.