Museum Tour App Experts

MEET THE GURUS

The Guru team is comprised of outstanding individuals who bring passion and excellence to their work every day–whether it’s building masterful data architectures, developing first-in-kind AR experiences or assisting customers with digital strategies. Our backgrounds range from art history to anthropology to archaeology, finance to design and customer service to engineering. As diverse as our experiences are, all Gurus have at least one thing in common–we love what we do!

As CEO, Suzie oversees the day to day operations at Guru.  She honed her skills while working as Senior Account & Operations Manager for Antenna International, where her portfolio included the Smithsonian, Empire State Building, the Museum of Modern Art and the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.  She was at the helm of all on-site staffed operations in the United States, providing Suzie the knowledge and the skills to deliver exceptional service and the ultimate visitor experience. She is a Jill-of-all-trades and a woodworking Guru. She is not a CEO to sit behind a desk - she will absolutely get her hands dirty onsite with clients when duty calls!

Do you ever deposit your checks using your phone? You can thank Clay Shinn for that. On top of being a tech guru (pun intended), he is also an avid traveler. He has visited over 50 countries, and is planning on completing a 50-mile trek in New Zealand for his 50th birthday. (The number 50 is a recurring motif at this juncture in his life.) At Guru, we know him as a typical San Diego native. What does that mean? He loves shorts. Before every meeting, he texts Paul Burke, “Is this a pants meeting?" It usually is.

A graduate from University College London’s Institute of Archaeology Master’s program, Paige gained expertise in exhibit design and execution, museum operations, and visitor management strategy. These skills have taken her to museums and cultural sites in both the UK and in her Southern California homeland, like the Billingsgate Bathhouse, V&A and the Getty. Paige finds engaging and innovative techniques to connect  the voice of the museum or heritage site to wider audiences. Prior to packing her bags for the UK and donning her required Indiana Jones fedora, Paige was an NBC Page (yes, Paige the Page) in Los Angeles and worked for several years in cable television production. In her free time she can be found sporting a pair of Mickey Ears on Main Street USA, Disneyland.

Mary has worked with museums and cultural attractions from Alaska to Australia, advising on the best digital strategy and content approaches to engage a variety of diverse audiences. Her expertise in user-testing and creative content workshops has been put to use at highly varied cultural sites like Sydney’s Hyde Park Barracks; Bethel Woods Center for the Arts – the Historic Site of Woodstock; The Institute of Contemporary Art Miami, and the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust. She is not just a Sales Guru, but a reliable consultant who brings energy and passion (and probably dynamite take-away) to each new client project. Outside of work life she can be found eating her way through her home city of Chicago, or visiting friends and families across the states to do the same.

Over the last decade, Dana has worked as Creative Director, Director of Content, and Head Copywriter developing brand voice, tone, and strategy for various businesses and industries. After earning a BA in Advertising and her Master’s degree in English, Dana managed content development and strategy in areas ranging from digital marketing and PR to non-profits. Over the last 6 years, Dana has cultivated the Guru voice and managed content for many Guru-powered apps including Space Center Houston, San Diego Museum of Art, The Dali Museum and more. Her ability to listen to and understand institution goals, as well as translate complicated subject matter into accessible and enjoyable information, enables her to manage accessible and memorable experiences in the digital space. When she’s not managing creative projects, Dana can be found at her sewing machine whipping up pop-culture wear and listening to Jane Austen novels.

Co-Founder, GoFundMe

Andy Ballester helped change the way the world gives when he co-founded GoFundMe in 2010. Since then, GoFundMe has helped raise over $6Billion dollars for medical expenses, education, community projects, sports, emergencies, pets and more, making it the largest online fundraising platform. But that’s not all Andy’s done to make the world a better place. He’s also co-founded Crushed, a restaurant in San Diego that specializes in brunch (drool!)...and mimosas (yes!)...lots of them (eek!). Seriously, just check out its Instagram account and you’ll see what has Crushed fans swooning, not to mention lining up every morning to get in. When he’s not crushing the brunch game, Andy spends his free time with his family, experimenting with virtual reality, or fostering a passion for creating products that drive change. Andy is as excited as we are about where Guru is heading in the AR/VR space.

Founder & Managing Director, Walden Capital

What do you get when you cross a passion for finding ground-breaking industry leaders, a mastery in leading investments across nations, and a deep-rooted love of museums and art galleries? You get Guru board member, Art Berliner! Art is the founder and managing director at Walden Venture Capital where he has spent the last few decades leading several IPO and M&A exits in the US, Israel, and Asia. Art has made investments in companies encompassing a variety of industries but is renowned for his expertise in consumer, retail and e-commerce business. When he isn’t looking for emerging industry talents, Art is perusing the galleries for new and emerging artists. We guess you could say, Art loves art. Contemporary art, to be exact. In fact, a favorite from his collection is a piece from Andy Warhol’s series “Ten Famous Jews of the 20th Century”, (Art likes to think of himself as the eleventh). Art lives in Berkeley with his family and his two fantastic rescue border collies.

CEO, Balboa Park Online Collaborative

Nik Honeysett is CEO of the Balboa Park Online Collaborative, a technology non-profit consultancy that provides support, development and strategy for the museums in Balboa Park, San Diego and beyond. Previously, he was Head of Administration for the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, California, (www.getty.edu) overseeing budget, personnel, operational and administrative services across the Getty's two sites, in Brentwood and Malibu. Prior to this role, he lead the Getty's Web Group, responsible for all aspects of their main website, intranets and web development activities. Before moving to Los Angeles in 2000, he spent 12 years at Cogapp (www.cogapp.com), a UK-based consultancy specializing in the publication of interactive and online multimedia for the cultural sector in Europe and the USA. He is a former chair of AAM's Media & Technology Standing Professional Committee and their Standing Professional Committee Council. He currently sits on the boards of AAM (www.aam-us.org), the Museum Computer Network (www.mcn.edu) and Guru (www.theguru.co), and teaches a course on the culture and management of museum technology through Johns Hopkins' Museum Studies Masters Program. He holds an undergraduate degree in Physics and a postgraduate degree in Electronics.

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