Tuesday, April 17, 2012

IJCAIP Advisory Board Profiles: Nick Nissley

Nick Nissley, Ed.D.
Dean of Business, Cincinatti State,

IJCAIP Advisory Board Member Nick Nissley, EdD, is currently Dean of Business, Cincinatti State. In his leadership role, in one of his many projects, he is collaborating with Cincinnati’s Contemporary Arts Center, to convene and host a community gathering along with select arts-based learning facilitators, to explore through a ‘Conversation Café’-like methodology (that also incorporates the CAC space/arts/exhibits), how the CAC might shape a future 'offering' to the community (e.g., position itself as a 'front porch' of the city - a 'commons space' – that enables arts-inspired dialogues, in service of imaginative possibilities). This project, being initiated by the CAC’s forward thinking leader, Raphaela Platow, will position the Contemporary Arts Center as: a space for reflection and dialogue, where the public can engage with artists, scholars, and each other around contemporary issues … remaining the place where opportunity transcends boundaries … an open cultural forum where people gather to gain exposure to new ideas and where art is a means for people to connect to each other and to the world outside.

Nick also invited singer/song writer Barbara McAfee (recent author of Full Voice: The Art and Practice of Vocal Presence) into the College following a painful strike, engaging the arts as a vehicle for healing. Nissley reports, “Together we practiced giving voice to what we care about, as well as simply listening to one another, and experiencing the joy of being heard."

Dr. Nissley is also recognized for his pioneering work internationally in the practice of arts-based learning in management education and leadership development. He was formerly The Executive Director, Leadership Development at the Banff Centre, Alberta. Under Nissley’s skilled leadership, The Banff Centre’s public programs, customized offerings, and Aboriginal programs developed a world-wide reputation for inspiring creativity in leaders from many disciplines.

Nick Nissley is an accomplished academic whose formal education includes a Doctorate in Education from George Washington University, in Washington, D.C., and an undergraduate degree in geology and mineralogy from Ohio State University. He has been a professor in the department of organization learning and development at the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, where he served as co-chair, department of organization learning and development, and program director for the master’s program in human resource development. Nissley has also held affiliations with the College of Business, Management Center, and Center for Nonprofit Management at the University of St. Thomas. While in academia, he consulted and presented to a variety of client organizations, including schools, government, for-profit, non-profit, and faith-based communities, local, regional, national, and international audiences.

At the center of Nick Nissley's research is applied imagination – helping individuals, organizations, and communities transform themselves through learning as they confront real-world challenges.

Over the past 10
years, Nick has helped define the field of arts based learning in management education. Story and narrative in the workplace is a special interest. In a recent article in "Issues and Observations" Nick Nissley writes, "the business world in recent years has shown increasing interest in the narrative lens and more specifically in the relationship between leadership storytelling and organizational change."

“In these times of economic distress, we should take a lesson from the pages of our history books – economic adversity can inspire extraordinary innovation, if we choose to engage the arts as enablers of business creativity.”

Nick Nissley, Journal of Business Strategy

Nick Nissley's interests in the arts, education, environment, and social service has led him, over the past fifteen years, to serve on the boards of organizations including: Editorial Advisory Board for Aesthesis: International Journal of Art and Aesthetics in Management and Organizational Life; Editorial Review Board for The Journal of Management and Organisation (Special Issue: Re-Conceiving the Artful in Management Development and Education); the Arts and Business Council’s Creativity Connection National Advisory Board in New York City; Minneapolis’s Springboard for the Arts; the Minnesota Association for Continuing Adult Education; the Hershey Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania; Duquesne University’s Capital Region Campus Advisory Board; and, presently in his home of Banff, he serves on the Board of Directors for Banff’s Mineral Springs Hospital and the Whyte Museum of The Canadian Rockies, as well as the Canadian Rockies Public Schools’ Futures Planning Advisory Board.

As an artist, Nick has also performed semi-professionally with Playback Theatre working as an actor on stages in Canada, Denver, London, and Krakow. He continues to engage with Playback Theatre, serving on the International Centre for Playback Theatre’s Strategic Action Plan Steering Committee.