California Dreamland Visionary
Bran Ferren – Co-Founder/Co-Chairman/Chief Operating Officer, Applied Minds
Epitomizing the “what if” spirit of California, Bran Ferren stands out as a three-time Academy Award-winning visionary, combining his extraordinary imagination as an artist and designer with his technical expertise as a scientist and engineer. Ferren’s career hints at his unbounded creativity: he has provided advanced technology, creative design, and other expertise to help develop everything from special effects for The Walt Disney Company to planet-roving vehicles for NASA. Currently, he heads up Applied Minds, a Glendale-based research and innovation studio with the whimsical tagline, “the little Big Idea company.”
Before founding Applied Minds, Ferren held leadership positions including president of research and development of Walt Disney Imagineering and co-founder of Associates and Ferren, supplying visual effects for films including Star Trek V, Altered States, Little Shop of Horrors, and The Manhattan Project. Entertainment, architecture, science, industry—Ferren, selected as one of “The 100 Most Creative People in Business 2011” by Fast Company magazine, has been in the thick of it all, imagining the impossible and making it real.