Jim Brazell has 27 years of experience in education, technology and business innovation. As president of VentureRamp Inc., he serves entrepreneurial, industrial, academic and government clients globally. To learn more check out eXtreme start-ups.
Over the past decade, his work includes: supporting the formation of the Austin-San Antonio Corridor, accelerating one dozen high technology start-up companies; catalyzing regional and international high technology initiatives; performing technology forecasts for the State of Texas; designing video games for major military commands and civilian workforce initiatives; and advocating for TEAMS and classical contemporary education in school reform.
A technology forecaster and strategist, Jim's message is that innovation is the key to education, workforce, and economic development goals in the 21st Century. His work in K-12 schools, community colleges, and universities includes facilitating design of new formal and informal learning programs, leading teacher professional development, and dissemination of best practices. Jim is a member of the Thornburg Center for Professional Development and he is IDEAS Orlando’s STEM consultant. Jim has led public policy, leadership training, and teacher professional development in STEM for a decade. In education, workforce, and economic development, his analysis of the changing nature of work, technology trends, and regional economic development strategy have influenced public policy nationally.
In 2014, Jim provided input to the: Office of Science and technology Policy Request for Information to create "Pull Machanisms" for Advanced Learning Technologies and the Texas Legislative Budget Board on the topic of STEM. In 2009, Jim and a team from the Society for Design and Process Science submitted comments that were read publicly to the President's Council of Advisors for Science and technology, a body composed of members of the National Academies of Science. The comments related to the vocation of STEM and the importance of Career and Technical education in the context of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM).
In 2008, the essay, "The Bellwether Sounds," was one of the first public voices proclaiming the need for the people to recognize the importance of science and technology to U.S. global competitiveness and security. Co-authored with support from General Robert F. McDermott, the founding academic dean of the U.S. Air Force Academy and Col. Francis X. Kane, Ph.D., military father of the Global Positioning System (GPS), the essay was the first public mention of a virtual Sputnik Moment in the context of social, political, and historical exigencies.
At the IC2 Institute, 2003-2009, Jim served as (1) facilitator for $10.1M in contracts to UT and partners for vide games for education; (2) researcher for emerging technology and jobs forecasts for a Texas legislative mandate, (3) project manager for DARPA and other defense, State and Federal contracts for video games for learning, (4) strategy of technology analyst with Dr. Eiza Evans, Dr. Alex Cavalli, and Dr. Mike Sekora (Project Socrates) for Digital Convergence Initiative in the Central Texas Research Triangle (College Station, San Antonio, Austin, Waco, Creve Coeur); and, (5) phase zero launch lead for University Technology Enterprise Network (UTEN), now in its eighth year serving UT Austin and the university system if Portugal with faculty and student exchange, technology commercialization, and training for technology transfer officers.
Jim also led Army Digitization with a focus on modeling, simulation and training. In this capacity, he served as a consulting analyst to the University of Texas, Austin, Innovation Creativity and Capital Institute, Digital Media Collaboratory and Institute for Advanced Technology, University XXI. Starting at the RGK Foundation site with Dr. George Kozmetsky’s Electronic Learning Technologies Laboratory (ELT Labs), Jim helped transform the lab into a unity reporting directly to the Vice President of Research.
A collegiate national champion in public speaking from Bradley University, a few of his audiences include: The World Book Fair, 11th and 12th International Conference on Technology Policy and Innovation, The World Congress on Information Technology, National School Boards Association, International Society for Technology in Education, Reliance 21 - Defense Science and Technology, National Security Agency, Armed Forces Communications Electronics Association, Society for Design and Process Science, and the Chautauqua Institute.
Jim is a 1995 graduate of Bradley University, Sociology, Summa Cum Laude. In 1994 he was a Discovery Institute, George Gilder Fellow in High Technology, Public Policy, and Entrepreneurship. In 2011, STEM Connector and Time Warner Austin, TX recognized Jim for advocacy of STEM+ARTS education. In 2012, Jim was recognized for by the Society for Design and Process Science for excellence in advocating transdisciplinary process in STEM education.
As a college student in San Antonio, he was the 1993 Battle of Flowers Oratory Champion kicking off the Fiesta celebration in the Alamo City. Jim and his family, wife Lisa and daughter Ava Brazell, live in the Hill Country of San Antonio, Texas.