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Staff Bios

Believers in intelligent discussion

 

THE TEAM

JOHN DONVAN

@johndonvan

Host and Moderator The moderator of Intelligence Squared U.S. debates since 2008, John Donvan is an author and correspondent for ABC News. He has served as ABC’s White House Correspondent, along with postings in Moscow, London, Jerusalem, and Amman. John is the coauthor of In a Different Key: The Story of Autism (Crown, 2016). In addition to premiering his first one-man show, “Lose the Kid,” in 2013 in Washington, D.C., John is a four-time Emmy Award winner and was a National Magazine Award finalist in 2010.


CLEA CONNER

Chief Executive Officer Clea Conner was named one of Crain’s New York “40 Under 40” in 2018, and is responsible for accelerating growth and raising the profile of the nation’s premiere debate platform. She is a member of the Intelligence Squared U.S. Board of Trustees and previously served as Chief Operating Officer. She holds three Telly Awards for outstanding programming in politics and public affairs programming; a Clarion Award for Women in Communications; and has received serial gold, silver, and bronze awards for Best Public Affairs Programming by New York Festivals. 

 

Clea has served as Strategic Advisor to GZERO Media among other media and technology startups, and led national marketing campaigns for best-selling authors, journalists, and public officials at Greater Talent Network, a celebrity speakers bureau. She also managed direct marketing campaigns for BMG/Columbia House among other direct-to-consumer brands, and launched public affairs campaigns for The Center for Arts Education.

 

A classical flutist, Clea serves on the Board of Directors of Decoda, a nonprofit chamber music society dedicated to advancing global music education. She also sits on the board of Nora Gardner, a New York City based women’s workwear brand founded to empower professional working women.  Clea holds a dual concentration B.A. from The New School with Dean’s Honors and studied political science at American University in Washington, D.C. 


AMY KRAFFT

Chief of Staff With a unique background in cultural institutions, Amy specializes in facilitating thought-provoking conversations and creative initiatives. Prior work includes managing events and conferences for the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center, and acting as the liaison between the New York and Italian offices. She has also contributed to donor cultivation and event planning at the Museum of Arts and Design, the Museum of the City of New York, and the Chicago History Museum.

Amy holds a B.A. in History from the State University of New York in Buffalo and an M.A. in Museum Professions from Seton Hall University.


DAVID ARIOSTO

Head of Editorial. David is an author, executive, and journalist, having held leadership positions at CNN, National Geographic, National Public Radio, and GZERO Media, a Eurasia Group company. Based in Havana, Cuba in 2009 and 2010 for CNN, he later authored “This is Cuba: An American Journalist Under Castro’s Shadow,” a St. Martin’s Press publication. In addition, he is a former board member of the Overseas Press Club, having worked as a journalist in more than 40 countries, and holds a Master’s of Public Policy degree from George Mason University. David is also a professor and documentarian at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. A New York native, with a penchant for spy novels, salsa (the dance, not the sauce), and novice guitar, he currently resides in Phoenix with his family.


SHEA O’MEARA

Director, Editorial Shea O’Meara completed the New York City Teaching Fellows Program prior to joining IQ2US, where she taught high school students with disabilities in the Bronx. She has also worked in foundation and nonprofit development and conducted political research. Shea holds a B.A. in Journalism from Ithaca College and an M.S. in Education from St. John’s University.


CONNOR CURFMAN

Creative and Marketing Strategist Connor Curfman earned his B.A. from New York University, graduating Cum Laude with a major in music business. Before joining the IQ2US team, Connor coordinated experiential marketing campaigns for Production Glue, working on accounts that included Yahoo, Nike, and major television networks. Previously, he produced digital content for Wearables.com, The Orchard and Republic Records.


ELIZABETH HOLLAND

Director of Partnership Relations Prior to joining IQ2US, Elizabeth worked in fundraising at The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. She holds a B.A. in Theatre Arts from Dickinson College and a M.S. in Nonprofit Management from Columbia University. She is actively involved as a volunteer with other nonprofit organizations including Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church, Ministry of Hope Lesotho, and her alma mater.


JENN ZELMER

Senior Researcher Prior to moving to New York, Jenn lived in Vancouver, Canada and earned a Bachelors of Arts in Anthropology and History from the University of British Columbia. Her passion for improving the lives of marginalized populations led her to work in health research sectors including occupational therapy and women's health. Jenn recently completed a Masters of Arts in Latin American and Caribbean Studies from New York University. There, as a Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellow, she studied Quechua and researched topics related to indigenous politics, public health, education and women's rights in the Andes.


KIMBERLY STREMPEL

Events and Operations Coordinator Kimberly Strempel is a graduate of Baruch College, where she earned her B.A. double majoring in Arts Administration and Corporate Communications with a minor in Journalism. She originally started her career in theater, working for organizations such as The New 42nd Street and Davenport Theatrical Enterprises. Once she found her passion for events, Kimberly went on to hold positions at Viacom and Major League Soccer before joining the team at IQ2US. 


DAMON WHITTEMORE

Chief Audio Engineer and On-Location Recordist Damon Whittemore has been with IQ2US since its inception in 2006. His work as an audio engineer spans the globe and includes recordings for grammy-winning musical artists, corporate giants Nike, Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Intel, and work in renowned halls such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and St. Paul’s Cathedral. Damon owns his own studio in New York’s East Village (www.valvetone.com). Damon graduated from the University of North Carolina Asheville with a B.S. in Audio Engineering and Computer Science and holds a Master's in Television, Radio and Film from Syracuse University.