Cultivating and Sharing Education’s Best Ideas

We introduce our audience to leading change-makers whose innovative ideas are shaping the rapidly evolving educational landscape.


Ed Harris, PhD, is Professor Emeritus at Oklahoma State University with over 35 years of experience in educational leadership. He is the Administrator for the Brock Prize in Education Innovation.

Jentre Olsen, PhD, a Teach for America alum, joined the educational leadership faculty at OSU after earning his doctorate at OU. He is currently serving as the Brock Chair of Education Innovation.

As a Boomer and a Millennial, Ed and Jentre have learned a lot from sharing their inter-generational experiences. They are eager to showcase today’s innovators and change-makers who are making a difference in education.

Jentre Olsen

Ed Harris


Our audience includes educational leaders, policy-makers, academics, K-12 educators, parents and families, and anyone who is interested in ideas that influence how we learn, think, and act.


  • Episode 14: Innovating Education with Evan Rahman & Renee Venagas (Khan Academy)

    In this episode, Ed and Jentre visit with Evan Rahman and Renee Venagas from Khan Academy. We discuss Khan Academy’s latest project, Khanmigo–an AI-powered personal tutor and teaching assistant. As a globally trusted education nonprofit, Khan Academy has reached hundreds of millions of users with their mission of providing a free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere. Note our December episode featuring Sal Khan.

    In the past year, AI has taken the world by storm. Together we consider the role of AI in the future of education, addressing the compelling possibilities for educators to integrate AI into their practice as well as the reservations commonly held in the educational community. 

    More than a plug and play tool, Khanmigo offers engaging, on-topic, and effective learning for students, and is ethically designed with safety and learning as a top priority. Unlike other AI tools such as ChatGPT, Khanmigo doesn’t just give answers. Instead, with limitless patience, it guides learners to find the answer themselves. Khanmigo helps teachers with lesson planning, assigning content, and (if needed) refreshing teachers’ own knowledge. Khanmigo can also integrate state standards in the teaching and learning process. These features are helpful to all educators and can be particularly helpful for emergency certified teachers and those who sometimes must teach classes outside their subject area expertise. 

    To learn more about Khanmigo, please check out the links below. Khan/How AI Could Save Not Destroy Education?

  • Episode 13: Innovating Education with La Verne Ford Wimberly

    In this episode, Ed and Jentre visit with Dr. La Verne Ford Wimberly. Dr. Wimberly  is a veteran career educator who played a role in desegregating the Tulsa Public school system. She later became the first interim African American female superintendent of TPS and has a trail of honors in her wake, including her latest honor as the inaugural recipient of the Ellis Walker Woods Award given by the Brock Institute in partnership with OSU-Tulsa. 

    Dr. Wimberly was most recently the chairperson of the Greenwood Cultural Center Board of Directors and the chair of the Board of Trustees at her beloved Metropolitan Baptist Church. The library at her alma mater, Booker T. Washington High School, is named after Dr. Wimberly and there are murals of her in schools throughout Tulsa.

    After posting selfies in her Sunday best for fifty-two consecutive weeks during the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Wimberly became a viral sensation for her hats, her smile, and most of all, her joy. Her book, My Sunday Best beautifully displays her wisdom, warmth, and wit. She reminds us, loving God, loving people, and having fun are the hallmarks of a life well lived.


  • Episode 12: Innovating Education with Danish Kurani

    Description: In this episode, Ed and Jentre visit with Danish Kurani, architect and chief designer at Kurani, an architecture studio which designs education centers, public places, and community spaces to help people connect, learn, and feel a sense of belonging

    Danish’s philosophy, Baaham, treats architecture as an active participant in our daily lives, and he has been cultivating this approach over the past 20 years. He has taught at Harvard and Stanford, designed for Google and Khan Academy, and advised Fortune 100 companies and governments who seek out his expertise in designing spaces that drive progress and improve well-being.

    Danish has been honored by a number of prestigious organizations, including the US Department of State, the World Cities Summit, and the OECD. In 2021, Fast Company named Danish one of the most innovative architects in the world.


  • Episode 11: Innovating Education with Sal Khan

     In this episode, Ed and John Brock visit with Sal Khan, the founder of Khan Academy, a nonprofit organization with the mission of providing a free, world-class education for anyone anywhere. Khan Academy’s content and mastery learning platform has more than 145 million registered users from around the world and has been translated into more than 50 languages.  The organization partners with school districts across the country that serve students who are historically under-resourced.

    Sal is also the founder of Khan Lab School, a nonprofit laboratory school in Mountain View, California, a cofounder of, a nonprofit that offers free tutoring over Zoom, and cofounder of Khan World School, a new nonprofit online high school.

    Sal holds three degrees from MIT and an MBA from Harvard. He has been profiled by 60 Minutes and was recognized as one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People in the World. He is also the recipient of the 2023 Brock Brock for Education Innovation. 


  • Episode 10: Innovating Education with Lee Gordon

    In this episode, Ed and Jentre visit with Lee Gordon. Lee is the co-founder of Hand in Hand, an Israeli non-profit organization that has created a network of integrated public schools serving Arab and Jewish children. Starting with just 50 students in 1998, Hand in Hand now has six campuses serving over 2,000 Jewish and Arab students and is making a significant impact in Israel for Jewish-Arab partnership, coexistence and shared society. Beyond the classroom, Hand in Hand engages over 3,000 Jewish and Arab adults in its joint community programs.

    Lee lived in Israel for 20 years and earned a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Hebrew University and graduated from the Mandel Institute’s School for Educational Leadership. He also founded American Friends of Hand in Hand, a US-based non-profit supporting Hand in Hand’s work in Israel. To learn more about Hand in Hand and to take a virtual tour of a few of their schools, check out the links below. 


  • Episode 9:  Innovating Education with Sanjeev Arora

    In this episode, Jentre and Ed visit with Sanjeev Arora, the director and founder of Project ECHO® (Extension for Community Health Outcomes). He is a distinguished professor in internal medicine at the University of New Mexico and the recipient of the Heinz Award for Public Policy, Rosenthal Award, and American Telemedicine Association President’s Award. Dr. Arora was also the 2021 Laureate of the Brock Prize for  Education Innovation. 

    Dr. Arora developed Project ECHO, which uses technology to connect underserved communities with experts in their fields of interest, creating networks for knowledge sharing, mentoring, and best practices. Started in New Mexico for one disease, Hepatitis C, ECHO now has 205 partners in 28 countries addressing over 100 key problems affecting lives and livelihoods. 

    Through Project ECHO, Arora has expanded his focus into other sectors, including education, in order to realize his goal of improving the lives of 1 billion people by 2025. Oklahoma State University has been key in bringing Project ECHO to Oklahoma, with ECHO lines in healthcare, mental health, and education. To learn more about how you can get involved visit the links below. 


  • Episode 8:  Innovating Education with April Grace

    In this episode, Ed and Jentre visit with April Grace, Superintendent of Shawnee Pawnee Schools. With over 35 years of experience working in public education, April brings with her a wealth of knowledge and proven leadership experience. 

    Dr. Grace has won a plethora of awards for her excellence and innovation in leadership, namely she was awarded the 2021 Oklahoma Superintendent of the Year, which is the highest state-level honor an Oklahoma superintendent can earn. She has been a model leader through many challenges, including the historic 2018 teacher walkout, the COVID-19 pandemic, and a devastating natural disaster in the Spring of 2023. 

    While Dr. Grace has announced her retirement at the end of this school year, she will continue to be a valued advocate for education throughout Oklahoma. We hope this episode leaves you feeling elevated, empowered, and encouraged to change your world!

  • Episode 7: Innovating Education with Autumn Tooms Cyrès

    In this episode, Jentre and Ed visit with Dr. Autumn Tooms Cyprès. Dr. Cyprès is the founding Dean for West Virginia University’s College of Applied Human Sciences. As a scholar and practitioner, she focuses on servant leadership and the overlap of education, health, wellness and prosperity. Prior to this appointment at WVU, Cyprès spent four years at The University of Alabama at Birmingham, first as the dean for the School of Education and most recently as the school’s associate provost. 

    Over her career, Autumn has been a high school biology and chemistry teacher, elementary school principal, and held many leadership roles in higher education including founding director of the Leadership Academy at The University of Tennessee, founding associate dean for research and graduate studies at St. John’s University, department chair at Virginia Commonwealth University and program coordinator at Kent State University.

    Autumn’s authentic nature and experiential wisdom is on full display in this episode as she speaks candidly to her leadership journey.

  • Episode 6: Innovating Education with William Parker

    In this episode, Jentre and Ed visit with William Parker. William is the Founder of Principal Matters, LLC, an educator, author, and speaker who uses his expertise in school culture, leadership and communication to equip educators with solutions and strategies for motivating students, inspiring teachers, and reaching communities.

    Together, they discuss William’s experience as the executive director of Oklahoma’s Association of Secondary Principals and Oklahoma’s Middle Level Educator Association as well as his success in his former role as the principal of Skiatook High School, near Tulsa, Oklahoma.

    Will also writes a weekly blog and hosts a weekly ‘Principal Matters’ podcast for school leaders available at his website: or via iTunes. He is the author of three books for school leaders, including: Principal Matters: The Motivation, Courage, Action and Teamwork Needed for School Leaders; Messaging Matters: How to Motivate Students, Inspire Teachers and Reach Communities and Pause. Breathe. Flourish.: Living Your Best Life as an Educator.


  • Episode 5:  Innovating Education with Sugata Mitra & Jeff McClellen (Part 2)

    In this second episode of a two part series, Jentre and Ed follow up with Sugata Mitra and Jeff McClellen after Sugata’s 2022 Brock Prize Symposium talk. Jeff is the founding director of StartSOLE. StartSOLE helps educators and students implement student centered, inquiry-based learning experiences using self-organized learning environments (SOLE). Together we take a deep dive into SOLE and discuss how you can apply SOLE in your context.



    Twitter: @startsole @sugatam

  • Episode 4:  Innovating Education with Sugata Mitra (Part 1: 2022 Brock Prize Symposium)

    In this episode, Jentre and Ed introduce a two part series featuring the 2022 Brock Prize laureate, Sugata Mitra. In Part I, you will hear Sugata’s talk at the 2022 Brock Prize Symposium

    Sugata is best known in the education community for developing the concept of self-organized learning environments (SOLEs) following his groundbreaking “Hole in the Wall” experiment in 1999, where he placed a computer in the wall of a slum in India and observed that given the right circumstances, children could teach each other almost anything. The Hole in the Wall experiment inspired Indian diplomat Vikas Swarup to write his debut novel, Q & A, which later became the movie, Slumdog Millionaire. Sugata is also the first recipient of the $1,000,000 Ted Prize, for his talk “Build a School in the Cloud”. 

    If you would like to view the entire 2022 Brock Prize Symposium and coordinating slides, please check out the YouTube link below. Tune in next month for Part II. 


    2022 Brock Prize Symposium:

    Build a School in the Cloud:

  • Episode 3: Innovating Education with John Brock

    “The most important thing we do in this life is educate our children” (John Brock).

    In this episode, Jentre and Ed visit with John Brock, founder of the Brock Prize in Education Innovation. The Brock Prize exists to find the best educational ideas that make a positive societal impact, award the originators of those ideas, and showcase their concepts and practices to the world. 

    John’s life has been marked with a dedication to family, friends, and philanthropy. John achieved success over a dynamic career in the oil and gas industry. At 93 and Chairman of the Board of Medallion Petroleum, INC., John still goes to the office every day at 8:30 am. He is also an active outdoorsman, serves on numerous boards and in multiple civic organizations, and he is a strong patron of the arts. 

    He is a member of the Oklahoma Hall of Fame and a prime example of legacy and leaving the world a better place. He believes education is a way to do this and a means to give people hope and opportunity, which is the primary reason he established the Brock Prize. In this discussion, the focus is not only on education innovation but also on the importance of living a life in service to others.

  • Episode 2: Innovating Education with Ellen Moir

    “When new teachers get into school settings with talented teachers, and they partner…together the school community becomes the hub of hopefulness.” In this episode, Jentre and Ed visit with Ellen Moir, founder and past Chief Executive Officer of New Teacher Center (NTC), a national organization dedicated to improving student learning by accelerating the effectiveness of new teachers, experienced teachers, and school leaders. She is recognized as a passionate advocate for our nation’s newest teachers and for the students they teach. Ellen received the 2014 Brock International Prize in Education for her work in scaling high quality teacher induction services to a national audience through the New Teacher Center. She believes the best way to ensure all students are college, career, and community ready is to provide educators at every level with the support necessary to succeed from their first day of teaching to their last. Together we discuss the importance of teacher mentoring and how we might best support and recruit teachers into the profession today. To learn more about NTC and Ellen’s legacy work, visit​ ​

  • Episode 1: Innovating Education with Rick Miller 

    “A good education changes what you know. A great education changes who you are.” In this episode, Ed and Jentre visit with Rick Miller, the first employee and appointed President of distinguished Olin College of Engineering outside Boston, MA. Rick received the 2017 Brock International Prize in Education for leading Olin’s innovative approach to teaching engineering. Together we discuss the storied success of Olin as well as Rick’s latest project on the coalition for life transformative education. Richard K. Miller was appointed President and first employee of Olin College of Engineering in 1999. In June 2020, he became President Emeritus and Professor of Mechanical Engineering. He then served as the Jerome C. Hunsaker Visiting Professor of Aerospace Systems at MIT (2020-2021). To learn more about Rick and his work, click on the links below. 


  • Trailer: Innovating Education 

    Welcome to Innovating Education, where we introduce our audience to leading change-makers whose innovative ideas are shaping the rapidly evolving educational landscape. Our audience includes educational leaders, policy-makers, academics, K-12 educators, parents and families, and anyone who is interested in ideas that influence how we learn, think, and act. The Innovating Education Podcast is hosted by Ed Harris, PhD, and Jentre Olsen, PhD. Ed is Professor Emeritus at Oklahoma State University with over 35 years of experience in educational leadership and the Administrator for the Brock Prize in Education Innovation. Jentre is a Teach for America alum and joined the educational leadership faculty at OSU after teaching in an urban middle school and earning his doctorate at OU. He is currently serving as the Brock Chair of Education Innovation.