Who We Are
We are an interdisciplinary professional group aligned by a belief that ecological systems can provide insights into innovative strategies for solving systemic sustainability challenges. We follow the “Bioteams” approach as our business model and form customized, skill-based teams to meet the needs of our clients' project goals. Using this "just-in-time" approach, our organization models responsiveness and resilience.
Taryn Mead, PhD
Sustainability and Innovation Strategist + Founder
Certified Biomimicry Professional
Taryn is an innovation and management scholar whose consulting and research focuses on the interface between corporate sustainability strategies and conceptualisations of nature. This includes subjects such as sustainability-oriented innovation, biomimicry, circular economy, the integration of planetary boundaries into corporate strategy, and the role of corporations in sustainable development. She also has substantial experience in sustainable design and expertise in creativity for sustainability amongst design and engineering professionals in interdisciplinary settings. As a practitioner of nature-inspired innovation, she has worked on domestic and international projects ranging from new product design to industrial ecosystems to new cities for 2 million inhabitants. She has also served as the lead facilitator for numerous workshops with corporate clients and blossoming biomimics and lectured for large audiences.
She graduated from Western State Colorado University with degrees in Biology and Environmental Studies, giving her a perspective on both the physical and socio-economic aspects of sustainability. During her early career, she worked at the John T. Lyle Center for Regenerative Studies at Cal Polytech as a regenerative designer. After several years as a field biologist, Taryn joined Biomimicry 3.8 (formerly the Biomimicry Guild), where she worked with Janine Benyus as a consultant, educator and lecturer. She taught in Biomimicry 3.8's Biomimicry Specialist program in addition to her work as a biomimicry strategist.
In 2017, she completed her PhD in Management from the Univesrity of Exeter, UK with a dissertation entitled "Factors Influencing the Adoption of Nature-Inspired Innovation in Multinational Corporations." Today, her research-based consulting work focuses on nature-inspired solutions to sustainability-oriented innovation with a deep understanding of both ecological systems and innovation management in practical settings. View her full resume here.
Catalyst and Facilitator
Barry Patterson leads sustainability and innovation initiatives through creative approaches to strategy, new business development, and organizational change. An innovator and change agent with extensive experience, he has a proven ability to provide new ideas and insights, then rapidly transform them into strategies, organizational platforms, and shared-value business opportunities.
Barry has worked on a wide range of strategy, innovation, and development projects – in the US, UK, Switzerland, Austria, Australia, and China – over the past three years, including bio-inspired design, integral, non-profit development, regenerative agriculture, renewable energy,
master planning, conservation and multi-sector collaboration. He is currently pursuing a Postgraduate Certificate Innovation, Enterprise and Circular Economy from the University of Bradford, UK. For more information about Barry's work, go to
Industrial Designer and Innovation Strategist
John is a Philadelphia-based independent industrial designer and biomimetic design consultant. After graduating from Philadelphia University in 2008 with his Bachelor's Degree in Industrial Design, John designed award-winning shower doors for MAAX Bath for a few years before deciding to leave the corporate world and design his own products. John’s entrepreneurial leap coincided with the inaugural Biomimicry Specialty program of 2011, where he received certification from the Biomimicry Institute (now Biomimicry 3.8) as a Biomimicry Specialist. He has since launched his WineHive modular wine rack on Kickstarter in March 2012, where he raised over $65k in preorders in less than 30 days. The WineHive is now well into production and can be seen in hotels and restaurants around the world, such as the Taj Hotel in Dubai, and will be featured on HGTV/DIY Network’s hit show I Want That in early 2013. John is always looking for new collaboration opportunities that can be found at the intersection of nature and design. For more information about John and the Winehive go to winehive.com.
Karen Allen, M.Sc.
Restoration Ecologist & Biologist
Certified Biomimicry Professional
Karen is a Certified Biomimicry Professional, restoration ecologist, and biologist who is passionate about sharing the secrets of the natural world to inform sustainable innovations. She is a seasoned educator, facilitator and consultant who has practiced biomimicry in a variety of projects since 2000. Karen offers project management, biological research, facilitation and training in nature-inspired innovation to corporate, government, private and non-profit clients. Her interdisciplinary science background and love of natural history help Karen translate biological information for non-biologists. She regularly teaches the core tools of biomimicry to biologists, designers, engineers, and business leaders throughout the world. Karen is a faculty member in the Masters of Science in Biomimicry and Graduate Certificate in Biomimicry programs at Arizona State University on-line. She taught Biomimicry 3.8’s 8-month Biomimicry Specialist Program in 2011 and 2012, the 2-year Biomimicry Professional Certification Program in 2013, and teaches numerous week-long workshops throughout the world. Karen also restores degraded stream and wetland habitat in Central Oregon through her company, Aequinox. For more information about Karen’s work, go to www.aequinoxhabitat.com
Organizational Culture and Leadership Specialist
Toby Herzlich is a facilitator, trainer, executive coach, and organizational consultant, with a practice dedicated to leading progressive groups through sustainable, transformative change and training leaders to be effective, adaptive, and resilient change agents. She is a Certified Biomimicry Specialist and Founder of Biomimicry for Social Innovation, translating ecosystem dynamics and Life’s Principles into leadership and social change strategies.
With 22 years of organizational development experience, Toby’s clients include non-profits, business, governments, foundations, and Tribes, including organizations such as the Rainforest Action Network, the Ford Foundation, the Bureau of Land Management, and MoveOn. She is passionate about creating innovative approaches to collaboration, building and guiding diverse networks including the Jewish Social Justice Roundtable and the national Young Climate Leaders Network. She has consulted with the leadership team of Biomimicry 3.8, through their own organizational change process and facilitated the first global summit of regional biomimicry networks. Toby is a Senior Trainer with the Rockwood Leadership Institute and on the faculty of the Center for Whole Communities. She is the founding co-facilitator of the Cultivating Women’s Leadership retreats and has supported the capacity-building of women leaders in war-torn countries of the Balkans and the Middle East. Toby loves to garden and telemark ski, and can often be found on mountaintops.